China’s military budget consistently sits at around 1.5 percent of its GDP, which is less than half of the USA’s. If China were preparing to conquer the world as so many hawks falsely claim, this would not be the case. The US is a nation with an interest in global domination, and its military budget reflects this. China is not a nation with an interest in global domination, and its military budget reflects this …
… No sane person would consent to agendas which threaten to kill our sons and daughters, impoverish us all, and even turn us into nuclear targets without copious amounts of propaganda. That’s why we’re seeing all these “news” reports about how urgent it is to prepare for war with China all of a sudden. Not because China poses a threat to us, but because we are allied with an empire that is planning to start a war of unfathomable horror.
On February 16, in The hazard of Oz: Canberra’s US nukes, I featured Caitlin Johnstone on the subject of her and her compatriots not being allowed to know if the USA – whose government she justly calls “the most tyrannical regime on the planet by a massive and easily quantifiable margin”, and whose endless aggressions on multiple fronts were soberly laid out by China’s Foreign Ministry on February 20 – has sited nuclear weapons on Australian soil.
Here she is again, responding to a Sydney Morning Herald feature which has five “experts” – all with lucrative links, undeclared by the SMH piece, to the war industries – arguing that Australia faces the threat of war with China within three years – and we’re not ready.
It is a central tenet of this site that the royal “we” of that header is a gigantic lie which conflates the interests of ordinary Westerners with those of the small group of beneficiaries – partners, junior partners, compradors and lackeys in the propaganda industries – with a stake, real or perceived, in Washington’s insanely perilous Project for A New American Century.
See in this regard my February 17 post, Did the crazies capture the USA? How?
Now read Caitlin’s response to the Sydney Morning Herald’s warmongering – or listen to it on her site via the link embedded in her title.
No, Australia Does Not Actually Need To Prepare For War With China
In the latest instance of the Australian media’s deluge of propaganda geared toward manufacturing consent for war with China, Nine Entertainment-owned newspapers The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age have brought together a panel of “experts” to assess how well-prepared Australia is for a hot war with its primary trading partner. The question of if that war is necessary or should be prepared for is left completely unexamined.
In a report titled “Australia faces the threat of war with China within three years – and we’re not ready,” we learn the names of the five “experts” SMH and The Age have recruited to make the titular claim, and you’re never going to believe this but it turns out they tend to work in professions that are intimately intertwined with the western imperial war machine.
This first “expert” is Mick Ryan, whom I have written about repeatedly because he seems to feature in literally every single Australian news media piece geared toward propagandizing Australians into accepting war with China as an inevitability which must be prepared for. Ryan is an Adjunct Fellow at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), which is funded by military-industrial complex entities like Raytheon, Boeing, Lockheed Martin and Northrop Grumman, and is also directly funded by the US government and its client states, including Australia and Taiwan. SMH and The Age make no note of this immense conflict of interest.
These five “experts” conclude that Australia needs to do much more to rapidly prepare for a hot war with China, saying that “The need to dramatically strengthen our military and national security capabilities is urgent, but Australia is unprepared.” They say Australia must make these dramatic changes not to defend itself from a Chinese invasion, but to fight a war over Taiwan.
“The war Xi is preparing for, they say, is one fought over Taiwan, a prosperous self-governing island of 24 million people that sits about 160 kilometres east of mainland China,” the report reads.
This is entirely in line with the appalling propaganda piece put out by Murdoch’s Sky News last month, which said Australia must double its military budget to prepare to back the US in a hot war over Taiwan.
The panelists paint Australia’s participation in this war as a settled matter, an inevitability should the US wage war on China.
“We have made our choice. If the United States goes to war with Taiwan, we are going to support them one way or the other,” says Mick Ryan.
“Neither the Australian military nor the public are presently truly prepared for the outbreak of war and Australia’s inevitable participation,” says Lavina Lee.
These military industrial complex-funded pundits are lying. Australia’s participation in an American war against China is not an inevitability, and is not necessary.
In reality, the best way Australia can protect itself from China is not to prepare for war with China. A hot war with our primary trading partner would destroy our economy and would likely cut off most of the imports we require to function as an island nation. We’ve got no business preparing to throw our nation’s sons and daughters into such a conflict, and we’ve got no business stealing from our nation’s most needful in order to effect that preparation.
An unresolved civil war between two adjacent bodies who both call themselves “China” is none of Washington’s business, and it is certainly none of Canberra’s. Let the Chinese sort out China, because China poses no threat to us.
That last point isn’t actually debatable, by the way. As Antiwar’s Daniel Larison recently noted on Twitter, China’s military budget consistently sits at around 1.5 percent of its GDP, which is less than half of the USA’s. If China were preparing to conquer the world as so many hawks falsely claim, this would not be the case. The US is a nation with an interest in global domination, and its military budget reflects this. China is not a nation with an interest in global domination, and its military budget reflects this.
In reality the US has been encircling China with more and war machinery for years in ways it would never permit itself to be encircled, and has been preparing for a confrontation with Beijing for a very long time. The US is plainly the aggressor here, and Australia now has an existential interest in militarily uncoupling from that aggressor before it gets us all killed.
The report by the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age — which former Prime Minister Paul Keating just called “the most egregious and provocative news presentation of any newspaper I have witnessed in over 50 years of active public life” — actually comes close to actually admitting that there’s a concerted propaganda campaign designed to increase hysteria about China and manufacture consent for war. The “expert” panel asserts that there needs to be a “psychological shift” in the public toward this direction which they must be actively persuaded to accept.
“Most important of all is a psychological shift,” the report says. “Urgency must replace complacency. The recent decades of tranquillity were not the norm in human affairs, but an aberration. Australia’s holiday from history is over.”
The report cites Seebeck as saying “the nation’s leaders should trust the public enough to include them in what can be a confronting discussion,” and that the public must be regarded as “smart enough to talk about defence and national security.”
The reason they are saying the public needs to be spoken to and persuaded to psychologically accept hawkish escalations against China is because no sane person would consent to such madness if they weren’t psychologically manipulated into it. No sane person would consent to agendas which threaten to kill our sons and daughters, impoverish us all, and even turn us into nuclear targets without copious amounts of propaganda.
That’s why we’re seeing all these “news” reports about how urgent it is to prepare for war with China all of a sudden. Not because China poses a threat to us, but because we are allied with an empire that is planning to start a war of unfathomable horror.
* * *
Yes I read Caitlin’s piece this morning. Absolutely fucking insane, criminally insane. But how many ordinary Australians will take this garbage seriously? Whether we’re British, Australian, German, American, or whatever, we don’t count. We’re not the “we” these warmongering nut jobs are referring to.
George Carlin was right.
Caitlin’s piece today, March 12, is worth a read Margaret:
” If, however, as Pareto suggested… a governing elite is inevitable, then we are certainly under the wrong elites. Whether a circulation of elites can be completed in time to save the world economic system from ruin and the majority from destitution and veritable slavery is a question of no little urgency.”
— Michael Rectenwald
As Margaret observes this is criminally insane.
Although, to be fair, no more and no less criminally insane than everything else going on throughout the collective West/Zone A.
Trying to create your own reality and imposing it on everyone else on the planet – from Ukraine to Taiwan, wokeism to the parasitical financial Ponzi scheme of neo-liberalism – to the point of outlawing via Cancel Culture anyone and everyone who fails to be sufficiently enthusiastic represents a unique form of collective insanity.
The more you look around the more difficult it is to even find the enthusiasm to attempt an argument against the case presented here:
[Though there’s every likelihood of needing to find new descriptive words and terms to adequately describe how dire the situation actually is.
” Look no further than the fiasco in Ukraine, engineered by geniuses of the US foreign service in some daft exercise to show the world who’s who and what for. And, remind me: what was the basic idea there? To hamstring and hogtie Russia so badly that her people would overthrow the only rational head-of-state in Christendom, a figure who makes the presidents, chancellors, and prime ministers of Western Civ look like a troop of gibbering mandrills, with painted faces and blue butts, the ass-clowns of geopolitics?
We’re waiting for financial markets, banks, and monies to blow, as an engine will when submerged in water. It can’t not happen, though every known device has been deployed to keep up appearances. The credibility of finance was thrown overboard a long time ago. Capital was sloshing around in the bilges as the ship heaved and pitched in the angry waters, and it had to go somewhere. The next turn will be when you go looking for where it went and you discover to your nauseated chagrin that the capital is just… gone! Through some legerdemain of physics, it disappeared… turned into a kind of anti-matter… fell through a black hole (possibly ripped by that iceberg), or up the smokestacks, like it was never there at all.
When that happens, our collective attention finally gets galvanized as by no shock before. When capital is truly gone, transmogrified into a whole lot of nothing, the time for standing by making faces and whining is over. By the way, this is the way the world ends for the vacuum known as “Joe Biden” and the Party of Chaos he is propped up to represent. Chaos, we will be astounded to learn, is not your friend, is not the solution to anything, least of all a polity that is floundering in lifeboats over cold, dark, deep water a thousand leagues from dry land. What’s more, there are no ships coming to the rescue”
In summary, for anyone familiar with Pratchett’s Discworld novels, Ronnie Soak*, The Fifth Horseman, is riding out.
*Chaos without the suit.