This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com:
- China extends its ‘Lebensraum’ policy to its passports
- Text of Constitutional Declaration by Egypt’s President Morsi
- Violent protests return across Egypt after Morsi’s power grab
- European Union budget summit collapses in disagreement
China extends its ‘Lebensraum’ policy to its passports
In a move that’s infuriating almost all of China’s neighbors, China isissuing a new passport containing printed maps that claim numerousdisputed territories, many of which have historically belonged toother countries.
The map claims as sovereign territory vast regions of the South ChinaSea, including areas that have historically belonged to Taiwan,Vietnam, Brunei, Malaysia and the Philippines. Vietnam andPhilippines have issued formal complaints against the map, pointingout that it was only recently at the ASEAN meeting that China askedeveryone to avoid doing everything provocative. China has alreadystationed military garrisons in the Paracel islands, and the Chinesehave repeatedly indicated that they will use their vast military powerto crush anyone who contests their claims. China frequently says thatthey want to live “in harmony” with their neighbors, but what theymean by that is “Do exactly as we say, and we’ll live in harmony;otherwise, we’ll kill you.”
Taiwan has protested to China because the passport map depicts China’ssovereignty over two Taiwanese islands that are famous touristattractions. Taiwan’s President Ma Ying-jeou urged China not toacross the Taiwan Strait.” Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council, theisland’s top China policy-making body, stressed that Taiwan “is anindependent sovereign country.”
The map depicts several regions within India as having Chinesesovereignty. India’s government has decided not to protest, andthey’re refusing to comment. Instead, they’re taking action: Anyonebringing a Chinese passport to the Indian embassy in Beijing will havehis passport stamp with a “corrected” map that shows the regions asbeing part of India.
China is becoming increasingly belligerent in its “Lebensraum” policybecause of two major factors.
The first is that the Chinese people are seething with nationalism,xenophobia, and a thirst for revenge for wrongs they suffered prior toand during World War II. This thirst will not be quenched by anythingshort of a major war, and everyone knows it.
The second factor is that China’s national policy toward land isnothing short of psychopathic. Several years ago I quoted the Chineseambassador to the U.N. as saying, “It’s not a matter of how big Taiwanis, but for China, one INCH of the territory is more valuable than theLIVES of our people.” I’ve quoted other Chinese officials and seennumerous stories as well that point to the following conclusion: Witha population of 1.5 billion people, it’s part of the Chinese DNA thatthe Chinese people are worth no more than interchangeable cogs in awheel, and China would willingly sacrifice million or even tens ofmillions of people for even a small piece of territory. There’slittle doubt in my mind that China is making military plans to occupyJapan, Taiwan, the Philippines and even North America in their questfor Lebensraum.
In the current situation, the passport maps are a faitaccompli. The Chinese government will never back down and removethe maps, and they’ll provide a constant source of irritation thatwill continue to infuriate all of China’s neighbors. This is not thelast we’ve heard of this issue.
A web site reader has suggested that there is a better historicalanalogy to China’s actions today than Hitler’s Lebensraum policy: TheLouis wanted France to “reunite” with foreign territories, based onold claims that were no longer valid:
There is a very clear political lesson about theChambers of Reunion that would be relevant if the Chinese keeppushing the way they are. Indeed one could even say that lesson isalready showing signs of being repeated.
Louis XIV managed to claim a few dozen cities and related lands.In the process, he alienated pretty much all of his neighbors tothe point that they united against him. Between the wars withthem and the civil unrest in France from trying to pay for thewars, he wound up bankrupting France and losing everything he hadgained in order to make the claims in the first place.
China has been overreaching, and now the ASEAN nations havestarted the process of uniting. They may not like each other allthat much, but none of them are interested in having China annexeverything not nailed down, along with a bunch of what is naileddown in the process.
Text of Constitutional Declaration by Egypt’s President Morsi
As we reported yesterday (see “23-Nov-12 World View — Mohamed Morsi appoints himself ‘Pharaoh’ of Egypt”), Egyptians were shocked onThursday by the announcement of a decree by Egypt’s presidentMohamed Morsi making himself a virtual dictator. Here’sthe text of the Constitutional Declaration:
We have decided the following:
Reopen the investigations and prosecutions in the cases of themurder, the attempted murder and the wounding of protesters aswell as the crimes of terror committed against the revolutionariesby anyone who held a political or executive position under theformer regime, according to the Law of the Protection of theRevolution and other laws.
Previous constitutional declarations, laws, and decrees made bythe president since he took office on 30 June 2012, until theconstitution is approved and a new People’s Assembly [lower houseof parliament] is elected, are final and binding and cannot beappealed by any way or to any entity. Nor shall they be suspendedor canceled and all lawsuits related to them and brought beforeany judicial body against these decisions are annulled.
The prosecutor-general is to be appointed from among the membersof the judiciary by the President of the Republic for a period offour years commencing from the date of office and is subject tothe general conditions of being appointed as a judge and shouldnot be under the age of 40. This provision applies to the onecurrently holding the position with immediate effect.
The text of the article on the formation of the ConstituentAssembly in the 30 March 2011 Constitutional Declaration thatreads, “it shall prepare a draft of a new constitution in a periodof six months from the date it was formed” is to be amended to “itshall prepare the draft of a new constitution for the country nolater than eight months from the date of its formation.”
No judicial body can dissolve the Shura Council [upper house ofparliament] or the Constituent Assembly.
The President may take the necessary actions and measures toprotect the country and the goals of the revolution.
This Constitutional Declaration is valid from the date of itspublication in the official gazette.
When you realize what it says, it’s actually pretty chilling.Al-Ahram (Cairo)
Violent protests return across Egypt after Morsi’s power grab
Thursday’s stunning power grab by Egypt’s president Mohamed Morsi,making himself a dictator who cannot be challenged in any way, hastriggered a return to massive and violent anti-government proteststypical of those directed against former president Hosni Mubarak andthe army junta last year. Police fired tear gas at thousands ofrock-throwing protesters in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, chanting demandsthat Morsi, a leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, resign.
In Alexandria, protesters stormed two of the Brotherhood’sFreedom and Justice Party (FJP) offices, ransacking themand burning the contents. However, there were also pro-Morsidemonstrators in both Cairo and Alexandria, claiming thatMorsi’s presidency should be honored, since he was “democraticallyelected.”
Morsi’s unexpected move has further polarized Egypt, and it may bethat Morsi has overplayed his hand. His decree has managed to reunitethe opposition, and they will vigorously challenge the decree on anongoing basis. Reuters and Al-Ahram (Cairo)
European Union budget summit collapses in disagreement
The pattern for European financial negotiations is that there’s bitterfighting and no agreement until the very last moment, and they there’sa compromise that kicks the can down the road and makes things worse.It had been hoped that the 27 European Union nations, whose leadersare meeting in Brussels, could agree on a new 7-year budget plan onFriday. But it’s way too early to force a last-minute solution, sothe negotiations collapsed in failure, with a new meeting scheduledfor early next year. In fact, they don’t have to reach agreement atall, which will cause the old budget simply to be rolled over. Someof the major issues are:
- Net contributor countries (countries that pay more in taxes than they receive in benefits), led by Britain, want to sharply cut spending, to match austerity policies of most countries. These include Germany, Denmark, Sweden, and the Netherlands. Britain’s prime minister David Cameron said: “More than 200 Brussels staff earn more than I do. Brussels continues to exist as if it’s in a parallel universe.” But net beneficiary countries, led by Poland, want the EU to spend more money than it does now.
- France and Poland want no reduction in the money they receive from EU’s Common Agricultural Policy (CAP or PAC), which provides agricultural subsidies to member states.
- Britain wants no reduction in the “rebate,” money that’s paid to the U.K. in lieu of an agricultural subsidy. The rebate was negotiated by Margaret Thatcher in the 1980s.