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Saturday, November 14, 2015

China Background, Economic Warfare, and More

- the world feels very different when you get perspectives from all over the world... if you were to simply watch the local news you'd think that the Chinese and Russians were right on our border and were ready to invade us. The other problem is that due to the language problem we only get a snippet of what they intend to say. Younger people in China aren't much different from us and censorship is bad but isn't as horrible as we're meant to believe?
Freedom, Politics and Change in China - Does The West Fear China Documentary
BBC Documentary Our World Flashpoint South China Sea english subtitles
United States, China and Public Opinion
Are We Looking For A Fight In The South China Sea
Are China's ambitions in the South China Sea a threat
The Debate - South China Sea Tensions (May 30th)
Counting the Cost - The scramble for the South China Sea
Taiwan in the South China Sea
Chinese Assertiveness in the South China Sea - Harbinger of Things to Come
Five Former U.S. Ambassadors to China Discuss U.S.-China Relations
- if you listen to a lot of the what is being said it's a combination of fear, disbelief, concern, anger, etc... in varying quantities. A lot of countries are wanting to maintain current order or at least have an understanding of where they will fit into the world that is currently being shaped before our very eyes. Others wanting to change and looking for an idea of how far they can push things. There are a lot of commentators out there who have a limited understanding of the history behind what is happening, a lot of differing perspectives, highly concentrated media, on all sides, which makes it difficult to get a balanced idea of what is actually happening
The Heat - Henry Kissinger on China-U.S. relations
China and the U.S. Are Long-term Enemies-kd
India’s World – US-China face-off in South China sea
- the thing I find most bemusing is that people most often remember the most extreme examples of each and every society out there. If you were to listen to some media outlets it seems as though the Chinese government were against 'Falun Gung', 'Dalai Lama', etc.. for no reason. Dig further and most groups that the government is opposed to are wanting substantial social change (not judging here. There have been some pretty ugly accusations though...). The worse part of this is that while there is somewhat of a tacit agreement among intelligence agencies internationally on what type of covers/operations that they should and should not use. This may have changed of late somewhat with some targets/penetrations being considered of higher priority. Muddies the water a lot...
Kevin Rudd - Are China and the US doomed to conflict
The Debate - South China Sea Tensions (October 28th)
- they don't trust us and we don't trust them. Look at their history and you sort of understand why exactly they don't trust us. A lot of promises were broken. Since they have a long memory they're thinking why should they trust us if we can't be trusted to follow through on what we say. Makes the circumstances worse...
- if they want a 'peaceful rise' they'll need to export their culture either way. Make them seem less threatening and help us understand them within context. Whether it's the Russians, Chinese, Europeans, Arabs, etc... everytime they speak about US/Allied conspiracies they sound crazy. Music such as C-Pop, sporting/music stars, etc... help but they aren't accessible enough. Clearly, Putin believes in the old Soviet model of strengh entailing respect on the global stage whether in sport, technology, science, etc... Too simplistic. Fear and respect won't hold without a continual presence (similar to geo-political engineering). Admiration and respect is something different though. That holds and won't require a massive security apparatus to keep everything in order. Easier said than done with a lof of the problems the world faces now though. Something which China seems to be better at especially in the context of their neighbours...

- if you follow the financial markets you'll realise that a lot of things aren't adding up at the moment. A lot of numbers don't quite make sense. Others have noticed as well... not just the conspiracy theorists, speculators, etc... If we were to go on fundamentals many countries that technically shouldn't be in trouble are in trouble and vice-versa
$100 Trillion American Economic Collapse with Jim Rickards
Exclusive Interview - Jim Rickards & Peter Schiff Discuss Global Gold Markets [Full Discussion]
The Coming Financial Collapse Of Great Britain UK Explained _ Revolutionary Documentaries
China Warns US, It Has Begun Dumping Treasuries - Episode 751a
- one of the things that is obvious is that during moments of financial difficulty the US goes understands together and in solidarity for one another. Their debt purchases are split internally and externally. Think about the recent European Debt issues where interest rates when through the roof. By having someone step in and control the flow into the general community they've been able to manage interest rates, inflation, growth, etc... The US has made things slightly easier by having private entities step in to keep things in check. By using a proxy/third party it makes it more difficult for speculators if this is is what happening which would make it more difficult for the US. Who knows how much of their own debt they're actually buying?
- if the West goes to war it will be a multi-layered/complex war. Most countries that it is likely to go to conflict with have taken substantial measures to shield themselves from any impact that they likely to face. It will be economic, cyber, hybrid, conventional, and non-conventional warfare. With the way the US is being dealt with at the moment it feels as though it's enemies have found a moment of weakness (or else the US is in actual decline). They're basically seeing how far they can push the US and it's allies at the moment. The obvious question is how much will it weaken and whether or not it will be (relatively) terminal?
Cold War 2 Or World War 3 Economic Warfare Between The United States And Russia Has Begun
Cyber-Enabled Economic Warfare - An Evolving Challenge
- the West is getting outplayed. If you want to take a bet, there are plenty of under valued assets out there if you look hard/deep enough. Moreover, it's clear that prior to any major military move that is likely to trigger actions by others (such as sanctions) a lot of countries are betting on this and taking a bet on it to reduce their economic impact. In reality the US has been caught off guard a number of times... but it doesn't really matter if you have a massive military. Does it matter if you can't really afford (or have no appetite) to deploy it?
The Push For War With China Is Now Escalating -- Episode 234
Economic WAR Between U.S. & Russia _ Gregory Mannarino
Panel 2 - Russia, China, and the Future of  Economic Warfare
- if various parties have engaged in economic/algorithmic based warfare then it would explain a few odd market movements and why some people have been arrested for reasonably 'normal behaviour' (according to the press). Part of me feels as though the world is currently being re-shaped in front of us behind our backs (if that makes sense)
- the problem with a lot of activists and conspiracy theorists is that they sound crazy or that they mix up good with bad material. It makes it very difficult to judge their credibility. This is especially the case with financial makret speculators who have a bet on the other side
US Pushes War Against Russia, North Korea And China To Cover-Up The Collapse - Episode 747b
U.S. Government Financial Numbers Are Manipulated To Keep The Illusion Of A Recovery - Episode 786a
- countries are worried about surprise opportunistic moves. Think about Turkey, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Iraq, Israel, etc... in the Middle East region at the moment. With the advent of the Syrian/Iraq/Afghanistan conflicts all have made moves to re-shape the region as they see fit. US/Australia has troops stationed in the north in case an 'opportunity' rises (there are other reasons as well obviously)...

- difficult to read encoded URL's. Thankfully, don't need to memorise them (though you do tend to memorise things over time)...

- making extensions easier then you actually think

- Carla is a sound plugin host for Linux. May require code modification/re-compilation to get things running on your localhost
- lots of plugins to help secure your local setup...

- Ninite is not the only option for automated installation under Windows. If desperate plenty of options

- decoding video/sound streams used to be easy but is not becoming more difficult with the increase in encoding, obfucation, encryption, etc... Need more time but think I can come up with an elegant solution... (some of the existing code that I'm looking at is highly specific and needs extensive modification for each site. I want a generalised solution that is elegant if possible...)

Some recent interesting quotes in the media...

- Multiple Air Force and industry sources confirm that the Raptor has a lower radar cross section over a wider range of frequencies than the F-35 (as the Air Force maintained for nearly decade till 2014), but the newer aircraft is far better at managing its signature thanks to an incredibly advanced electronic warfare suite. That is likely why retired Air Combat Command commander Gen. Mike Hostage told Breaking Defense: “The F-35 doesn’t have the altitude, doesn’t have the speed [of the F-22], but it can beat the F-22 in stealth.” The operative word there is can. As current ACC commander Gen. Hawk Carlisle told National Defense Magazine: The F-35 has much better “passive capability to determine who’s out there [and] its ability to manage its own signature.”

Ultimately, it’s the pilot vehicle interface the United States has developed over the decades at great expense that affords it the edge over Russia and China’s upstart programs—as Carlisle himself told me a few years ago at the Pentagon. Nonetheless, the United States will have to keep developing new technology to stay ahead.
- "If the only problem the F-35 had was that the aircraft was $1 million more expensive, they wouldn't have a problem," he said. "The problem is the aircraft is tens of millions of dollars more than they originally told people it would be, and that's just the acquisition price. It's the sustainment cost that will destroy air forces."
Still, even with Canada pulling out of the program, costs of the F-35 will likely fall in the long term as production of the aircraft becomes more efficient, according to The Fiscal Times. Each plane now costs an estimated $108 million, according to Lockheed, and prices are expected to fall to $85 million per plane by 2019 if Canada stays in the program.
- The F-35 program includes variants for the Marine Corps, Air Force and Navy, and also has international developmental partners and customers. The fighter program has been plagued by numerous problems from helmet glitches that made pilots air sick to software issues. Most recently, the services discovered that pilots weighing less than 136 pounds could be killed by whiplash if they needed to eject
- Because of the importance and complexity of the project, Alexander Sergeyevich Yakovlev assigned a large portion of his OKB to the development of the new VTOL fighter, with no fewer than ten chief engineers working simultaneously on what was called "Product 48" (the military had designated it Yak-41). Over fifty designs were studied. One key problem was designing an aircraft with both vectoring thrust and an afterburner, which was essential for sustained supersonic speeds. A twin-engine design was considered, but abandoned as the loss of an engine on landing would result in an immediate roll to the side. Eventually it was decided that the best arrangement was a single vectoring nozzle located just behind the center of gravity, as well as dedicated vertical thrust jets positioned just behind the cockpit. A considerable amount of time was spent in the development of a flat, rectangular nozzle similar to that later employed on the American F-22 Raptor. Such a nozzle proved well-suited for the changes in configuration needed for both thrust vectoring and supersonic flight, and allowed for a thin, shallow tail. Ultimately, a circular nozzle was used, located between twin booms supporting the twin-finned tail.[1][page needed]

Parts subject to excessive heat from the engines during landing were manufactured of titanium, and no less than 26% of the overall aircraft was to be manufactured of graphite or composite material. Because of heat build-up, hovering was restricted to no more than 2½ minutes.[1][page needed]

All three engines were controlled through an interlinked digital system, which was capable of controlling both engine start-up as well as modulating the thrust of all three engines during landing and hovering flight. Twin tandem reaction control jets were positioned at the wingtips, while a swiveling yaw jet was positioned under the nose.[1][page needed]

The cockpit was pressurized and air-conditioned. The small canopy was bulletproof in front. It hinged to the right, but because of a long dorsal spine it had no rear vision. The ejection seat was automatically armed as soon as the engine duct was rotated past 30 degrees with an airspeed of less than 300 km/h (186 mph). The instrumentation in the prototypes was simple and similar to that planned for the earlier Yak-36M. The production version was to have been fitted with an extensive avionics and weapons suite including doppler radar, laser-TV ranging and aiming, as well as a heads-up multifunction display (HUD) which worked in connection with a helmet-mounted missile aiming system as found on the Mikoyan MiG-29. This system allows the pilot to lock onto an enemy aircraft by turning his head as far as 80 degrees from front.[1][page needed]
Following the announcement by the CIS on September 1991 that it could no longer fund development of the Yak-41M, Yakovlev entered into discussions with several foreign partners who could help fund the program. Lockheed Corporation, which was in the process of developing the X-35 for the US Joint Strike Fighter program, stepped forward, and with their assistance 48-2 was displayed at the Farnborough Airshow in September 1992. Yakovlev announced that they had reached an agreement with Lockheed for funds of $385 to $400 million for three new prototypes and an additional static test aircraft to test improvements in design and avionics. Planned modifications for the proposed Yak-41M included an increase in STOL weight to 21,500 kg (47,400 lb). One of the prototypes would have been a dual-control trainer. Though no longer flyable, both 48-2 and 48-3 were exhibited at the 1993 Moscow airshow. The partnership began in late 1991, though it was not publicly revealed by Yakovlev until 6 September 1992, and was not revealed by Lockheed until June 1994.[1]
- Iran is not an innocent country burdened by our sanctions, as some like to portray it. It is a country that deprives its citizens of basic needs in order to bankroll terrorism and violence throughout the world. Iran’s interests are far different than our own and to believe that handing over billions of dollars to this regime will go without bolstering our enemies is ludicrous. To ignore Iran’s intentions in the world is foolish. And to believe that this is a good deal is simply na├»ve.
- In Israel, much of the criticism has revolved around the cost of the US-made jet and the erosion of indigenous know-how. Former defense minister Moshe Arens, an aeronautical engineer by training and one of the program’s most vocal castigators, told The Times of Israel in October that while the F-35 might be “nice to have,” he didn’t see any need for it considering the country’s budgetary constraints. He noted that the military was still operating Vietnam War-era armored personnel carriers — to fatal effect this past summer in Gaza’s Shejaiya neighborhood this past summer — and said Israel would do better upgrading its existing F-15 and F-16 planes and investing the surplus funds in the ground forces.
In 1968, Israel bought the US-made Phantom, which was faster than the Mirage and could carry nearly six times its payload. “Our concept is that we will never win with quantity,” Lt. Col. B said. “We’ll win by being first.” The Phantom, he said, was “the first bomber that could escort itself deep into enemy territory.”
- This is not to say that today’s IAF planes lack the ability to unlock the S-300. Quite likely, the IAF has trained against the system in Greece and has created a combat doctrine capable of defeating it. The F-35 though, he said, “is similar to the iPhone,” in that the planners were able to take the capacity once housed on separate aircraft – stealth, intelligence gathering, advanced radars, planning, control, and electronic warfare – and “pack it all into a single fighter plane.”

Shapir conceded that the aircraft has “fantastic” capabilities and even said it might yet prove a useful tool against the S-300, but asserted that the only reason it is a truly necessary tool for Israel – which fights most of its battles near home but needs to maintain the capability of projecting its air power to places as distant as Tehran — is because Israel’s planes are aging and the United States “made the F-35 the only game in town.”

“There’s no other way,” he said, “because there’s nothing else out there.”
- Which raises the question of whether the RCAF will get new fighters at all. The lifetime of existing CF-18s has already been extended to 2025. The Liberals appear determined to end the RCAF’s participation in the aerial campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. Bearing that in mind, they may decide it makes more sense to invest in state-of-the-art drones, which can stay aloft virtually around the clock and patrol vast swathes of Arctic territory at high altitudes, than replace aging but still-serviceable manned fighters they would prefer not to use. In that event, there would savings in the billions, which could be redirected towards a navy in dire need of rapid, major investment.
- Because of their relatively long wavelength, VHF radars generally lack sufficient accuracy to guide a missile to a target on their own and are therefore used to cue higher frequency, shorter wavelength engagement radars to the approximate location of the target. Narrowband stealth aircraft such as the F-117, F-22 and F-35 were designed to be very low observable (VLO) in these higher frequencies in order to significantly limit the range at which they can be successfully detected by engagement radars. Consequently, despite inputs from the VHF acquisition radar, the X-band* engagement radar of Dani’s SA-3 battery was able to track the F-117 only at a distance of 8 miles (13 km), obtaining a lock and launching two missiles towards it only on the third attempt (the colonel would order his men to switch the engagement radar on for no more than 20 seconds for each attempt in order to avoid being targeted by NATO electronic warfare aircraft).
- Meanwhile, Germany spends a mere 1.2 percent. Italy, Canada, and Spain spend 1 percent or less. It’s understandable that people in those countries prefer to spend their money on universal health care and paid parental leave. But one of the reasons they’re able to do that and skimp on defense is the security subsidy they get from US taxpayers. The United States foots the bill for 73 percent of NATO’s defense spending, including the cost of keeping more than 40,000 troops in Germany. The fact that so many Europeans have come to take US protection for granted could be seen as a sign of the trust they place in the US-led NATO alliance. But a truly strong alliance requires equal participation from all members. Europeans can’t expect Americans to make sacrifices to defend them if they aren’t willing to make the same sacrifices to defend themselves.
- The humiliating failure of the two peace agreements signed in Minsk, Belarus, intended to halt the fighting in eastern Ukraine, proved what leaders of the free world simply refuse to admit: that there is no dealing with Putin the way they deal with one another. The model is repeating itself in Syria, as diplomats head to Vienna for peace talks. But confronting Putin doesn’t mean defeating the entire Russian army or starting World War III. Putin’s entire leadership cult in Russia is built on his image as an invincible strongman. He cannot afford to look like a loser, which is why he has maintained the feeble myth that Russian forces aren’t fighting in Ukraine, and why he picks targets NATO won’t defend. Any opposing force that threatened to inflict enough damage to pierce Putin’s illusion of invincibility would be enough to cause a real change in his behavior.

But the politicians of the free world know that it is easier and more popular to do nothing and claim to be peacemakers than to endure the criticism that inevitably comes with any action, which is why it will be so hard to break the cycle in Ukraine, Syria, and wherever Putin prods next—whether it’s Libya, the Baltics, or Venezuela. The United States and Europe have overwhelming military and economic advantages over Russia, but their leaders seem to lack the realization that diplomacy has its limits when facing dictators, and that diplomacy is only possible from a position of strength. As long as Putin sends jets and tanks while the West sends blankets and diplomats, the dictator will be calling the shots.
In 1986, Ames told the KGB that he feared he would be a suspect after the loss of several CIA assets. The KGB threw US investigators off his trail by constructing an elaborate diversion whereby a Soviet case officer told a CIA contact that the mole was stationed at Warrenton Training Center (WTC), a secret CIA communications facility in Virginia. US mole hunters investigated 90 employees at WTC for almost a year and came up with ten suspects, although the lead investigator noted that "there are so many problem personalities that no one stands out".[22][23]
- China's efforts amount to a worldwide "market intelligence program," says former FBI analyst Paul D. Moore. "The reality is that China does not practice intelligence the way God intended," he jokes. America's intelligence structure arose during the Cold War to contain the Soviet Union. "In our model, professional intelligence officers go out and do the job," Moore says. "In China's model, anyone and everyone is a potential intelligence asset."
- “Of course, we too practice cyberespionage,” Clapper said. “In a public forum, I won’t say how successful we are at it, but we’re not bad at it. When we talk about what are we going to do to counter espionage, to punish somebody, or retaliate, I at least think it’s a good idea to think about the old saw that people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw rocks.”

That comment didn’t sit well with the committee’s chairman, Sen. John McCain, a Republican from Arizona.

“So it’s OK for them to steal our secrets that are most important, including our fighters, because we live in a glass house?” McCain asked. “That is astounding.”

Clapper replied, “I’m not saying it’s a good thing. I’m just saying that both nations engage in this.”
- “We should not have one-sided evaluations. People fell in love in the camps, people got pregnant; it wasn’t all bad,” he says, attributing negative information about the camps to a western campaign against Russia. “It was fashionable to say bad things about the USSR. Now it is again fashionable to insult Russia. We have sanctions against us. The west looks for negative things.”

Panikarov’s views on the Gulag are part of a larger trend. With the Soviet victory in the second world war elevated to a national rallying point under Vladimir Putin’s presidency, the forced labour camps, through which millions of Soviet citizens passed, are seen by many as an unfortunate but necessary by-product. In many museums and in much public discourse, the Gulag is not ignored completely, but is “contextualised” in a way that plays down the horror and pairs it with the war, suggesting the two come as a package.
- "If you want to hit an aircraft carrier, you just drop a bomb on the flight deck, and that puts the carrier out of action," he said, saying flight deck incidents have caused many deadly carrier fires over the years.

"You get a weapon — the bigger the better — and put it on the flight deck, preferably when they're launching, recovering or arming aircraft," Polmar said. Or, he added, "You knock out the propellers" with a torpedo designed to home in on their movement.
- As for new technology, Rear Admiral Ma said China has tested a new launch system “many times” and that all tests so far have gone quite smoothly. Ma spoke of “breakthroughs” in an electromagnetic catapult launch system for the new carrier. The new technology will set it apart from the Liaoning, which uses a more-outdated “ski jump” launch system. Breakthroughs in developing a catapult system would result in an “enormous increase” in the flight radius and payload of carrier-based aircraft, Ma said. With this technology, Ma claimed, China will be on par with or even more advanced than the United States.

Ma would not confirm, however, that the new technology was being used on the carrier currently under construction. Admiral Liu said the new carrier would “definitely” have areas of improvement over the Liaoning but declined to provide any specifics, saying the construction process is “extremely complicated.”
- China and Germany agreed to work on stopping economic cyber spying between the two nations amid mounting concern that the thousands of small- and medium-sized companies that form the backbone of German industry are ill-equipped to repel hacking attacks.

Similar no-spy agreements exist between China and the U.S. as well as the U.K., Merkel said Thursday in Beijing. Germany, the Asian nation’s biggest European trade partner, seeks such a deal “very quickly,” and China agreed, she told reporters after talks with Chinese Premier Li Keqiang.
- Britain spends £37.4 billion on its military budget, the fifth largest in the world.

Of this, £19.5bn is with British industry but less than half of new contracts are put out to competitive tender.

BAE Systems, Britain’s largest manufacturer, is the main supplier. In 2014 only 8 per cent of its contracts with the MoD were competitive.

Over 60 per cent of British arms sales are to the war-torn Middle East. Since 1945, British forces have carried out armed intrusions in foreign countries on 25 occasions — more than any other nation, including the US and Russia. Syria awaits.

Over the past 25 years Britain has spent £34bn on such interventions, mainly in Iraq and Afghanistan, where the army suffered significant military defeats.

This sum increases to £42bn if compensation for injury and death is included, plus a further £30bn on long-term care for veterans.

The consequences for the people of those countries are now only too visible, with thousands of refugees leaving their homes to seek respite in Europe from bombing, shelling and starvation.
- "By keeping silent," said Mr Shlosberg, "Russia's rulers have shown how far away they are from the Russian people -- on such unreachable heights that they hear nothing, feel nothing and understand nothing. The landing of their aircraft will not be a soft one."
- Back in 2004, when Australia was in the process of negotiating a trade deal with the United States — one that John Howard initiated — we were told that there would be no changes to the Pharmaceutical Benefit Scheme, the great scheme that ensures that all Australians, no matter their economic status, will have access to medicines at a reasonable price.

The US pharmaceutical industry hates the PBS with a passion because it would love to get Australians to pay much higher prices than what we do. Howard knew that it would be political poison, especially with an election due in 2004, to say anything indicating that the Americans would be able to manipulate the PBS. But that is precisely what happened.
- Young children brought up not believing in God are more likely to be generous and tolerant than those who grow up in a religious household, a study has suggested.

Agnostic and atheist kids were significantly more likely to share than children whose parents were religious, researchers claimed.

But children who believe in God were more likely to be vengeful and back harsher punishments for those who hurt others, they said.

It is suggested this is because religious children feel as they are going to heaven they are less concerned about the consequences of being mean.
- “Yeah, the good old prosperous days when US had a country that cared about Israel and our own morality. We stopped communism dead in South America. Consider how things would be now if Obama had been running things then. Instead of an Islamic Spring, we’d have had a Commie Spring. Mexico under communist rule, our borders being overrun worse than they are now, was a viable possibility back then. Cuba would’ve been thrilled. Even Jimmy Carter would have been happy.”

What a load of crap. America back in the 80s faced very different threats than today, and even Reagan didn’t let Israel control our foreign policy in the Middle East. Imagine where we would be now if Alfred E. Bush hadn’t invaded Iraq, or enacted his economic policies that cratered our economy. Whichever President that took over after GW would have had to make similar choices to what current administration has done. We are simply tapped out economically and militarily to repeat what was done during the Cold War, let alone shoving our weight around the world. Grow up.
- A central thrust of Soviet propaganda throughout the Cold War was to portray all Soviet misconduct, however outrageous, as no different from what the West was doing — including the propaganda itself. Accordingly, if the West accused the Kremlin of some gross wrongdoing, it was promptly depicted as another hypocritical attempt to belittle the Soviet Union. To a degree it worked: Many Russians, lacking any direct experience of the West, accepted a moral equivalence between their system and Western democracy — along with an instinctive fear of a world forever scheming against them. Alas, this approach has become an integral part of Vladimir Putin’s Russia.

- as usual thanks to all of the individuals and groups who purchase and use my goods and services

Quick Beef Stew Recipe, Random Stuff, and More

This is the latest in my series on quick, easy, and tasty meals:   http://dtbnguyen.blogspot.com/2017/11/chinese-style-congee-jook-recipe...