World View: Chinese, Vietnamese Officials Meet without Smiling, Agree on Nothing

World View: Chinese, Vietnamese Officials Meet without Smiling, Agree on Nothing

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com

  • U.S. is flying F-18 surveillance missions over Iraq
  • Chinese and Vietnamese officials meet without smiling and agree on nothing
  • Ebola unexpectedly surges again in western Africa

U.S. is flying F-18 surveillance missions over Iraq

After send 375 special forces troops to Iraq earlier this week,President Obama’s administration has authorized F-18 surveillancemissions over Iraq. The administration has also received a requestfrom the Iraq’s government to begin air strikes against targets fromthe Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). However, air strikeswould require special forces on the ground to identify targets.

F-18s are not traditional surveillance aircraft, but are attackaircraft, and they’re big and loud. It’s believed that the intent isto frighten the ISIS militants with a lot of noise. Fox News

Chinese and Vietnamese officials meet without smiling and agree on nothing

For years, China has been taking actions to annex the entire SouthChina Sea, including regions that have historically belonged toVietnam, Brunei, Malaysia, Indonesia, Taiwan and the Philippines.China has been using a “salami slicing” strategy, annexing the SouthChina Sea bit by bit, threatening anyone who stands in its way withmilitary action. The confrontation between China and the Philippineshas gotten moderately worse in the last few months.

But the confrontation between China and Vietnam has become extremelybitter in the last few months, after China set up an oil rig andstarted drilling for oil in a region in Vietnam’s exclusive economiczone (EEZ). China and Vietnam have been ramming each other’s ships,and Chinese warships frequently train their high-pressure water hoseson exhaust pipes, antennae, radars and windows of Vietnamese ships, inorder to disable to sink them. Last month, the oil rig triggeredanti-China demonstrations across Vietnam that turned violent,killing five Chinese nationals and injuries to hundreds more.

So China’s top diplomat Yang Jiechi visited Hanoi on Wednesday, tomeet with Vietnam’s foreign minister Pham Binh Minh and prime ministerNguyen Tan Dung, the media “expressed hope” that this would coolthings off.

So when Yang and Minh first met and shook hands, they did so withonly the faintest of smiles. According to Minh:

“Our meeting … demonstrates that the two parties andstates of Vietnam and China have the desire for dialogue to settlethe current complicated situation in the East Sea.”

According to China’s foreign ministry, Yang replied:

“The most urgent thing is for Vietnam to stop itsinterference and harassment, stop hyping up the issue and stopwhipping up disagreement to create new disputes, and properly dealwith the aftermath of the recent serious incidents ofviolence.”

China Daily and Thanh Nien News (Hanoi) and Reuters

Ebola unexpectedly surges again in western Africa

The World Health Organization (WHO) believed that the Ebola virusbreakout in Spring of this year had fizzled out, as there hadn’t beenany new deaths from the virus since April. But in recent days, sevenpeople have died in Monrovia, Liberia’s capital city. It’s nowbelieved that Ebola is still spreading in west Africa, where the deathtoll now exceeds 330. The outbreak began in Guinea, and later spreadto Sierra Leone and Liberia. The new deaths have spurred fears thatthe outbreak is no longer under control, as authorities had previouslysaid. VOA

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