‘Not intimidated’: US Navy tweets sharp comeback to China on ‘aircraft carrier killer’

A news report in China claimed that the South China Sea is fully within grasp of the Chinese army. The US Navy responded by tweeting pictures of the two aircraft carriers it has sent to the region for military exercises.

WORLD Updated: Jul 06, 2020 08:08 IST

hindustantimes.com | Edited by: Amit Chaturvedi – Hindustan Times, New Delhi

The United States Navy took a jibe at China after a news report claimed that Beijing has a wide selection of anti-aircraft carrier weapons and the South China Sea is fully within grasp of the Chinese army. The US Navy said that it is “not intimidated”.

“China has a wide selection of anti-aircraft carrier weapons like DF-21D and DF-26 “aircraft carrier killer” #missiles. South China Sea is fully within grasp of the #PLA; any US #aircraftcarrier movement in the region is at the pleasure of PLA: analysts,” a tweet from China’s Global Times said.

In response, the US Navy’s chief of information tweeted, “And yet, there they are. Two @USNavy aircraft carriers operating in the international waters of the South China Sea. #USSNimitz & #USSRonaldReagan are not intimidated.” It tagged the Global Times report and used the hashtag #AtOurDiscretion.

 

The United States has sent the two aircraft carriers – USS Ronald Reagan and USS Nimitz – to the South China Sea to participate in a military exercise.

The exercise is long-planned but comes as China conducts military drills of its own in the area, near the contested Paracel Islands, exercises that have been criticised by the US and other countries.

The US Navy’s operation of two nuclear-powered aircraft carriers in the South China Sea region further represents a significant show of force and comes amid heightened tensions between Washington and Beijing over a number of areas, including Hong Kong.

The US has also targeted China over the coronavirus disease which was first reported in the Chinese city of Wuhan and later spread to the world. Washingtomn accuses Beijing of hiding information from the world.

China responded with a short video on Twitter in May which said that Washington didn’t listen to the words of caution from Beijing on the coronavirus outbreak.

The animated video was posted on Twitter by the Chinese Embassy in France on Thursday and was titled “Once upon a virus”.

The video lists the timeline of the outbreak, with cartoon figures representing China and the United States accusing each other. While the Chinese side in the video says it informed about the discovery of a new virus in January, the US didn’t take any note of it.

The one minute 39 seconds video further shows China announcing its lockdown in January, and the US calling it barbaric. It also shows the US accusing China of human rights violation – more than once. (Click to Source)

 

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Indian soldiers unarmed and caught by surprise in China clash, families say

REUTERS

Indian soldiers who died in close combat with Chinese troops last month were unarmed and surrounded by a larger force on a steep ridge, Indian government sources, two soldiers deployed in the area and families of the fallen men said.

One of the Indian soldiers had his throat slit with metal nails in the darkness, his father told Reuters, saying he had been told by a fellow soldier who was there.

Others fell to their deaths in the freezing waters of the Galwan river in the western Himalayas, relatives have learned from witnesses.

Twenty Indian soldiers died in the June 15 clash on the de facto border separating the two armies. The soldiers all belonged to the 16th Bihar Regiment deployed in the Galwan region.

No shots were fired, but it was the biggest loss of life in combat between the nuclear-armed neighbors since 1967, when the simmering border dispute flared into deadly battles.

Reuters spoke to relatives of 13 of the men who were killed, and in five cases they produced death certificates listing horrific injuries suffered during the six-hour night-time clash at 14,000 ft (4,267 meters) amid remote, barren mountains.

Reuters contacted the military hospital in India’s Ladakh region where the bodies were brought. The hospital declined to comment on the cause of death and said that the bodies were sent to the families along with the death certificates.

Reuters also spoke to two soldiers of the Bihar Regiment deployed in the area, who were among those who accompanied the bodies of fallen colleagues to their homes in the area. They were not directly involved in the melee.

The soldiers cannot be named because of military rules and all the families asked for anonymity because they said they were not supposed to speak about military matters.

The Indian Defence Ministry did not respond to a request for comment on the fighting on June 15.

In response to a Reuters query, a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson repeated previous statements blaming the Indian side for crossing the de facto border and provoking the Chinese.

“When Chinese officers and soldiers went there to negotiate, they were suddenly and violently attacked by the Indian troops,” the spokesperson said. “The rights and wrongs of the incident are very clear. The responsibility absolutely does not lie with the Chinese.”

China has not provided evidence of Indian aggression. China’s Defense Ministry did not respond to a request for comment.

Three of the dead men had their “arteries ruptured in the neck” and two sustained head injuries caused by “sharp or pointed objects,” the death certificates seen by Reuters said.

There were visible marks on the neck and forehead, all five documents said.

“It was a free-for-all, they fought with whatever they could lay their hands on — rods, sticks, and even with their bare hands,” said a government official in Delhi briefed on the clash.

The Indian government has said that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) acted in a premeditated manner, but it has not provided a full account of the clash that stunned the country and stoked popular anger against China.

China has dismissed an Indian government minister’s claim that China had lost 40 soldiers from the PLA’s western theater command deployed in Galwan.

Its envoy to Delhi suggested in remarks to local media and posted on the embassy website that there had been losses on both sides.

“The Indian Army suddenly and violently attacked the Chinese officers and soldiers who went for negotiation, causing fierce physical conflicts and casualties between the two sides,” Sun Weidong said.

Indian government officials have told Reuters that the conflict began when the commanding officer of the Bihar regiment led a small party to Patrol Point 14 to verify whether the Chinese had made good their promise to withdraw from the disputed site and dismantle structures they had built there.

But instead they came under attack by Chinese soldiers using iron rods and wooden clubs with nails studded in them on a narrow ledge barely four meters wide overlooking the Galwan river.

In recent weeks, the world’s two most populous countries have mobilized more forces along the 3,488 km Line of Actual Control (LAC), and the renewed hostilities have triggered a diplomatic and commercial spat that threatens to escalate, experts including former Indian military officers say.

The possibility that unarmed Indian soldiers were overrun by a larger force could further fuel resentment against China and raise questions about why Indian soldiers were sent to a tense front line without being armed.

“How dare China kill our unarmed soldiers. Why were our soldiers sent unarmed to martyrdom?” Rahul Gandhi, leader of the main opposition Congress party wrote in a tweet, demanding the government provide a full account.

A relative of one of the soldiers who accompanied Col. Santosh Babu, the commanding officer, to the site of two tents erected by the Chinese troops told Reuters that members of the Indian patrol were unarmed.

They were confronted by a small group of Chinese soldiers and an argument ensued over the tents and a small observation tower the relative said, on the basis of conversations with two other soldiers who were present.

Reuters was unable to establish all of the details of what happened, but government officials in New Delhi briefed on the incident said that at some point Indian troops took down the observation post and the tents because they were on India’s side of the LAC.

Soon after the Indian side came under attack from a large Chinese force that pelted them with stones and attacked them with sharp-edged weapons, according to the families of three dead Indian soldiers, based on conversations they had with survivors.

Some soldiers retreated to safety on the ridge-line in the darkness, but when they could not find the commanding officer, they re-emerged and came under fresh attack, four family members said.

Babu was among those killed in the fighting, the Indian government said. One of the soldiers deployed in the area that Reuters spoke to said the Indian patrol was outnumbered by the PLA.

“The Chinese side overwhelmed our people by sheer numbers,” said the soldier, who overheard radio messages seeking reinforcements being sent to regional headquarters in Ladakh.

Three of the Indian families said they had been told by soldiers who were commissioned to bring the bodies back to them that some combatants pushed each other into the fast-flowing Galwan river.

The government official in Delhi also said bodies of some soldiers were fished out of the river the next morning. Some had succumbed to hypothermia, the official added. (Click to Source)

 

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CASHLESS SOCIETY 2020: Bill Gates Goes Viral on Digital ID and Digital Currency

This may be my most important article to date. Bill Gates went viral in several controversial interviews last month, advocating mandatory digital ID as proof of coronavirus vaccination as soon as a vaccine is available. The proof will be required, if Gates has his way, before anyone is allowed in large public gatherings.

Gates has also funded research to create digital personal ID vaccination tattoos to make proof of vaccination visually and electronically apparent. And Gates has long advocated becoming a cashless society using digital ID.

Coronavirus is handing Gates the world he said he wanted 20+ years ago — a world he said he would do everything in his power to bring about. (Not the diseased aspect, but the changes coming with that disease.) How ironic (or is it?) for a man whose charitable work has focused on vaccinating the world against viral diseases.

Bill Gates says proof of COVID-19 vaccination will be mandatory

It sounds like something straight out of the The Apocalypse, but Bill Gates has funded development of a digital tattoo that he now publicly says should be required for people to live in public now that a everyone in the world now lives under the overhang of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

One possible requirement … is the mandatory participation in a global vaccine program, underwritten by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Big Pharma and an assortment of other people who supposedly have the best interest of the global citizenry in mind.

Strategic Culture Foundation

If Bill Gates has his way, the government must make sure all people who participate in public events are vaccinated before they are allowed to join in the fun.

He created so much stir that some of the videos of Gates making that statement, which I saved links to as I composed this article, are “no longer available.” Gates referred in the videos to “immunity passports,” calling them a “digital certificate.” Other aspects of Bill Gates’ work indicate those “immunity passports” will be in the form of digital tattoos on the back of your hand or forearm.

I heard this interview with Bill Gates a little over week ago. When I started writing this article, I searched all over to try to find the interview. Most versions of the interview that had not been pulled had the controversial parts edited out. Finally I found this one that had not been edited. All of which is to say, don’t be surprised if it mysteriously disappears from YouTube before you even read this article or also gets edited.

Here is my own transcript in case the video gets scrubbed:

Eventually what we will have to have is certificates of who’s a recovered person and who’s a vaccinated person because you don’t want people moving around the world where you’ll have some countries that won’t have it under control — sadly. You don’t want to completely block off the ability for those people to go there and come back and move around, so eventually there will be sort of this digital immunity proof that will help facilitate the global re-opening up.

The implication is clearly that you will not be allowed to move around the world freely and publicly without that “digital immunity certificate.”

In case this unedited video I was able to find gets pulled or edited, I also found this one, describing a “different world” that includes the digital proof near the end:

Corroboration of statements by Bill Gates about digital indentification

For further corroboration, you can see an interview on Fox with Attorney General William Barr responding to questions about Gates’ digital vaccine tracking, showing Gates clearly said such things, though not specifically the digital tattoo concept.

Dr. Fauci also says digital ID certificates of immunity are being seriously talked about as part of what the nation needs to put in place to open back up: (Skip to the 2:26 mark.)

And, then, here is Congressman Ron Paul addressing the Bill Gates statement about digital immunity certificates:

As you can see, the idea went mainstream and is being talked about everywhere. The authority of big global government sweeping in to force you to vaccinate and to prove with digital ID that you have vaccinated is just about established reality.

Gates’ development of digital tattoos to certify coronavirus immunity

The closest verification I can find for the idea that Bill Gates’ digital identification would come in the form of a digital tattoo or a chip implant is not specifically related to coronavirus, but it is solidly connected to proof of viral immunity. First, I found it encoded within this quote from Politifact:

“The researchers are exploring storing data in a pattern of dye, invisible to the naked eye, that is delivered under the skin at the same time as the vaccine. The technology is currently in the proof-of-concept phase,” the [Gates} foundation told PolitiFact in an email. “If successful, governments could elect to incorporate this kind of tool in their immunization programs in place of, or in addition to, their current methods of tracking vaccinations.”

While the tattoo places subcutaneous digital markets, it doesn’t have to be visible. I just has to provide your ID and proof of vaccination when scanned.

I also found this information from Rice University about vaccine tattoo research that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is funding. Apparently the vaccine will be part of the digital ID tattoo. The vaccine is injected in the pattern of something like an invisible bar code that carries markers that will show up electronically when scanned.

(More detail can be read about this research funded by Bill Gates at Scientific American.)

So, you want the vaccine, along with it comes the Digital ID, like it or not. You’ll just be told that’s the only the vaccine comes. Don’t want the vaccine but want to go to public events, you’ll be told sorry, “You have to have proof of vaccination to enter the stadium.”

That’s how that works.

Note that, in the videos above, Bill Gates is not just proposing digital ID for the US. He wants to see a global form of digital ID for a global problem. I’ve long said our next solution to a global economic crash will be a global cashless system, and this vaccination identification program uses fear of the coronavirus to get us there.

The “digital immunity certificates” are giant leap that may go immediately to simply digital identification, making them useful for financial transactions, computer password logins, security passes, and all electronic transactions as well. Why limit their identification functions to just proof of vaccination. A number is a number. The information it shares with other can be stored on the cloud and changed as needed.

A digital nano-signature in the tattoo would make it harder for people to counterfeit a strictly visual tattoo or an ID card for the purposes of being allowed into community events without having to get a vaccine. The same machine that scans your hand could simultaneously scan your fingerprints to make sure they match the record brought up by the tattoo ID number for nearly foolproof electronic security.

Many people don’t want the new vaccines Gates and others are developing because they involve genetic RNA technology never used in human beings, but many other people want to insist that anyone in public is vaccinated like they are. Viral fear gives the upper hand to the vaccination crowd, and if the tattoo is the only form of vaccination available … you do the the math.

Gates is a revelation of where society is headed

Source: DonkeyHotey / CC BY

It also forced all people, great and small, rich and poor, free and slave, to receive a mark on their right hands or on their foreheads, so that they could not buy or sell unless they had the mark, which is the name of the beast or the number of its name. This calls for wisdom. Let the person who has insight calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man. That number is 666.

Revelation 13:16-18 New International Version

For Bill Gates the desire to have a tattoo people can feel assured you are virus cleared combines seamlessly with his statements long ago about creating a digital cashless society and with society’s desire now for touch-free financial transactions wherein you can just scan your tattoo (more on that in my next article).

Back in 2012, Digital Trends predicted, “By 2020, smartphones will replace cash and credit cards as the preferred payment method.

By 2020, most people will have embraced and fully adopted the use of smart-device swiping for purchases they make, nearly eliminating the need for cash or credit cards. People will come to trust and rely on personal hardware and software for handling monetary transactions over the Internet and in stores. Cash and credit cards will have mostly disappeared.

Well, it looks like coronavirus arrived just in time to make that 2020 delivery.

Further back — in 1999 — I wrote a book that said the same thing about smart phones replacing cash and credit cards and eventually about digital technology being implanted on your body as personal ID. It referenced Bill Gates as the driving force:

Globalization was the political buzz-word of the nineties, and it certainly fits the scenario described in one of the most famous passages of the Book of Revelation, which describes the times when the Antichrist will be revealed….

The ability of one individual [or institution or government] to have financial control over everyone almost has to imply a global economy. For forty years those old-time radio preachers have proclaimed that the requirement of a personal identification code including the number 666 for all financial transactions indicates a future cashless society. Now those who shape world finances and technology are publicly announcing the same thing.

End-Time Prophecies of the Bible

That was two decades ago, and that chapter of my book went on to quote Bill Gates from his book The Road Ahead:

Rather than holding paper currency, the new wallet will store unforgeable digital money…. Tomorrow the wallet PC will make it easy for anyone to spend and accept digital funds. Your wallet will link into a store’s computer to allow money to be transferred.

That technology did come about ten years later with smart phones, rather than an electronic wallet as Gates first envisioned (but it’s essentially he’s same thing, just has telephone technology, cameras, etc. included). Many people now routinely do such transactions via their phones. Note how what Gates went on to describe in his vision for the future fits perfectly with today’s desire for social distancing:

When wallet PCs are ubiquitous, we can eliminate the bottlenecks that now plague airport terminals, theaters, and other locations. As you pass through an airport gate, for example, you wallet PC will connect to the airport’s computers and verify that you have paid for a ticket…. Your wallet PC will identify you to the computer.

Now you walk by, and your phone can do that via bluetooth. Note the new vaccine ID, however, will also be able to identify you as someone who has been vaccinated — someone who poses no risk to other passengers or people at the crowded airport. Technology has moved along, under Bill Gates’ own development, to a mere scalable implant in the form of a tattoo that is something like a bar code.

Your phone can be locked to it; your car can be locked to it; your house can be locked to it; your computer can be locked to it; your bank account can be locked to it (in place of a debit card); your medical information can be locked to it and viewed by emergency personnel only in case you are unconscious; your police record can be locked to it. Ultimately security, viral immunity and ultimate convenience all in one invisible tattoo.

Bill Gates foresaw security concerns, even back when predicting the wallet PC that would require something more biometric like what he has now funded:

As cash and credit cards begin to disappear, criminals may target the wallet PC, so there will have to be safeguards…. Another option, which would eliminate the need for you to remember a password is use of biometric measurements … a physical trait, such as a voice print or a fingerprint.

Smart cards, the most basic form of the wallet PC, look like credit cards and are popular now in Europe. Their microprocessors are embedded within the plastic. The smart card of the future will identify its owner and store digital money.

Remember, the smart phone had not been invented yet. The smartest phone back then was the introductory Blackberry. At that point, I was a big step ahead of Bill Gates in seeing what would come. Why? Because I looked at the future the Bible pointed to and saw what it would take to get here, and now it is here … at least, in terms of the technology and the application of the technology, if not, yet, in terms of who controls the technology and how they will abuse it.

What better biometric ID than to have the “wallet PC” printed or injected right beneath your skin? That way there is no question the ID goes with the person, and you cannot lose it like a smart card or have it stolen because walking around with someone’s stolen hand to access their account looks highly suspicious.

At the time, Gates did not apparently see the tattoo coming, because all the technology necessary needed something less biological like the “wallet PC,” but those restraints existed before “the cloud.” Now, all the information can be kept on the cloud.

The digital ID doesn’t need to contain any information other than your ID number because all your financial data can be stored on the cloud as well as your health data — whatever part you want (or are required) to make publicly available upon the scanning of your biometric ID. Thus, the actual ID can be minuscule and simple.

At the time, the possibility of such global accessibility didn’t exist. There was no network of storage and high-speed wireless transmissions widespread enough to be almost ubiquitous as there now is.

Thus, I leaped ahead of Gates and followed up his own comments with my own:

The next logical question — since the chips can be embedded in small plastic cards — is why not embed the identification number under a person’s skin? That would make it difficult to steal and impossible to lose or forget. Such identification implants are already used on pets. Once the system became universal, people who refused to participate would, by default, be shut out.

For the consumer, such a system means total convenience. For banks, it means huge efficiency gains over paper transactions. For political leaders, it may mean perfect financial control and automatic, instantaneous tax transfers on every sale. For police it may mean financial trails to each individual’s whereabouts.

Of course, now under COVID-19, it means medical trails to the whereabouts of the vaccinated or unvaccinated as their info on the cloud gets updated to include whether they are vaccinated or not. (And that is what Bill Gates is saying we MUST make sure we have before we re-open society and move back away from social distancing in order for everyone to feel secure in large public gatherings.)

Gates went on to write,

The global information market will be huge and will combine all the various ways human goods, services, and ideas are exchanged. In short, just about everything will be done differently. I can hardly wait for this tomorrow, and I’m doing what I can to help make it happen….

Hmm, that almost makes one wonder if doing what he can includes infecting the world with a virus to get it over its apprehensions. While I don’t really think he would go so far as to kill hundreds of thousands of people to make that happen, the virus certainly gives him cause right now to leap in and do everything he can to help make the world he so intensely wanted happen today.

The information highway will extend the electronic marketplace and make it the ultimate go-between, the universal middleman…. [Computer] servers distributed worldwide will accept bids, resolve offers into completed transactions, control authentication and security and handle all other aspects of the marketplace…. It will be a shoppers heaven….

This idea will scare a lot of people … but, as with so many changes, I think once we get used to it, we’ll wonder how we did without it….

When the information highway makes geography less important, we will see electronic, on-line banks that have no branches — no bricks, no mortar … and transactions will be made through computer appliances.

How aptly that last line fits with the coronavirus shutdown foisted on us all now where many banks are closed, except by appointment, and do all transactions via their drive-up windows or online to avoid as much human contact as possible.

As for the idea scaring a lot of people, you know what they say about people overcoming their hatred of others if they find they have a mutual enemy to fight. It applies to their fear, too, if they have something greater to fear that they need to fight. The coronavirus is giving them something greater to fear … at least for all who perceive the epidemic that way.

The coronavirus is the great accelerator of the very global moves toward the cashless society the maestro of vaccinations said he would do all he could to bring about. His two greatest interests have fused at a microscopic intersection of cells and nanobytes.

My own conclusion twenty years ago about how a cashless society would come about

Gates referred to this as “friction-free capitalism.” I referred to it as “the electronic Tower of Babel. I also wrote,

The rapid increase in financial transactions over the internet is creating high demand for a single electronic currency that will work worldwide and a universal language of commerce. If human inertia and fear prevent a fully automated cashless economy at first, the next worldwide economic crash may provide the perfect impetus for implementing such globalization as part of the recovery.

Well, as it turns out, it required a worldwide economic crash plus a worldwide pandemic to overcome that inertia, but as my next article will lay out that inertia appears now to have been overcome for many by their viral fears and need to stop contagion that will keep re-emerging from other parts of the world if we don’t have a global answer.

As for the mysterious number 666, here’s an interesting piece of trivia: Almost every universal product code (UPC) on nearly every grocery item sold already has this number.

I described how every bar code has a pair of extended lines at the beginning of the first number in the product code, another between the first and second number and another after the second number. These bracket the numbers so the computer knows where each number begins and ends. I explained it this way:

In UPC language, one way to represent the number six is with two thin bars. Every grocery UPC has to extended thin bars at the beginning of the code, two extended thin bars in the middle of the code, and two extended thin bars at the end of the code. In that sense, every code has a six at the beginning, a six in the center, and a six at the end. These extended bars, called “guard bars,” are used by the computer scanner to bracket two sets of numbers that each code is composed of so the computer can lock onto the product code. While the computer does not read these extended lines for their numeric value, they appear like sixes would elsewhere in the code…. Maybe it is just a short matter of time until people scan the same way groceries do. So people, too, become a part of the electronic Tower of Babel.

Perhaps the fact that they look the same as as three sixes in each bar code but do not represent the same value as the number six, explains why the quotation from Revelation contained this riddle,

This calls for wisdom. Let the person who has insight calculate the number of the beast….

In other words, it might not be quite as obvious as just seeing everyone run around with the number “666” tattooed on them. It would take a little wisdom to decipher the riddle. Why? If the prophecy were spelled out too much, it would be self-defeating. Who, today, would mandate people have a number that actually said “666” on everone’s hand, knowing the prophecy in the Book of Revelation would raise fear everywhere.

My answer may not be the right solution to the riddle, but the fit is extraordinary, for we are now apparently — if Bill Gates has anything to say about it — moving into just the kind of time I described twenty years ago, when a great financial crisis (accompanied, as it happens by a viral crisis) would move the entire world to a system of scanning people for their identification.

My next article will focus on examples of how the coronavirus is readying the global population to embrace digital ID that becomes part of your person (i.e., is implanted as a chip or an electronic tattoo beneath the skin) as we move toward becoming a cashless society. I will lay out several obvious ways in which fear of the virus is causing people to want what Bill Gates is saying must come.

However bad the idea, the time is ripe and ready for its global acceptance.

I continued as follows:

If human history is measured by the ticking of world events, then its chronometer must be buzzing, which may indicate that humanity as a whole is reaching its end…. The human world is shrinking. The rapid increase in travel and global communication within the last generation is greater than the increase in all previous generations combined…. The earth has shrunk into a village.

Nothing has made that more evident than the coronacrisis, where the rapid increase in travel carried the disease around the world in days and put the entire world into a quarantine as if it had shrunk into a single infected village and now is causing the maestro of vaccines to state we must all receive a digital immunization ID.

The coronavirus became the great accelerant that is overcoming people’s fears of Bill Gates and his viral vaccines and his technology.

I concluded my chapter about Gates’ press toward a digital, cashless society with the following statement about other elements of the times the Bible predicted 2,000 years ago:

The resurrection of the Jewish state, the anomalous surge of environmental disasters, the globalization of politics and economics, and the astronomical speed in human developments — all at the turn of a millennium — heighten the sense that the ultimate climax of human history may be close. (Click to Source)

 

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India Rushes To Buy MiGs, Sukhois, Missiles

7/2/2020 3:53:49 PM

(MENAFN – Kashmir Observer) File Pic

New Delhi: In the midst of India’s tense border standoff with China, the Defence Ministry today approved procurement of 33 fighter jets, a number of missile systems and other military hardware at a cost of Rs 38,900 crore to bolster the combat capability of the armed forces, officials said.

They said 21 MiG-29 fighter jets will be procured from Russia while 12 Su-30 MKI aircraft will be bought from State-run aerospace behemoth Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL). A separate proposal to upgrade existing 59 MiG-29 aircraft has also been approved.

The ministry has also approved procurement of 248 ASTRA beyond visual range (BVR) air-to-air missile systems. The missile is designed to engage and destroy highly manoeuvring supersonic aircraft and has all weather day and night capability, the officials said.

The decisions were taken at a meeting of the Defence Acquisition Council (DAC) chaired by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. The DAC is the highest decision-making body of the Defence Ministry on procurement.

The Defence Acquisition Council also approved acquisition of Pinaka missile systems as well as procurement of long range land attack missile systems having a firing range of over 1,000 km.

In a press release, the ministry referred to the “current situation and the need to strengthen the armed forces for the defence of our borders” while talking about the decisions of the Defence Acquisition Council.

The Indian and Chinese armies are locked in a bitter standoff in multiple locations in eastern Ladakh for the last seven weeks. The tension escalated manifold after 20 Indian soldiers were killed in a violent clash in Galwan Valley on June 15. The Chinese side also suffered several casualties but it is yet to give out the details.

The proposals approved by the Defence Acquisition Council also included procurement of Pinaka ammunition, software defined radios for the Army and BMP armament upgrades.

The procurement of 21 MiG-29 and upgrade of the existing fleet of MiG-29 is estimated to cost the government Rs 7,418 crore while purchase of 12 new Su-30 MKI from HAL will be made at a cost of Rs 10,730 crore, the officials said.

In the statement, the ministry said capital procurement worth around Rs 38,900 crore was approved by the DAC.

“Focused on indigenous design and development, these approvals include acquisitions from Indian Industry worth Rs 31,130 crore. The equipment are to be manufactured in India involving Indian defence industry with participation of several MSMEs as prime tier vendors,” it said.

“The indigenous content in some of these projects is up to 80 per cent of the project cost. A large number of these projects have been made possible due to Transfer of Technology by DRDO (Defence Research and Development Organisation) to the indigenous industry,” the ministry said.

It said the cost of these design and development proposals is in the range of Rs 20,400 crore.

“While acquisition of Pinaka missile systems will enable raising additional regiments over and above the ones already inducted, addition of long range land attack missile systems having a firing range of 1,000 KM to the existing arsenal will bolster the attack capabilities of the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force,” the ministry said.

“Similarly induction of Astra Missiles having beyond visual range capability will serve as a force multiplier and immensely add to the strike capability of the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force,” it said. (Click to Source)

 

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‘Need to be close to our friends’: India holds naval exercise with Japan amid stand-off with China

The Japanese navy has become one of the principal partners of the Indian Navy. Japan was one of the few countries who publicly supported India during the Doklam crisis.

INDIA Updated: Jun 29, 2020 00:13 IST

Pramit Palchaudhuri

Hindustan Times, New Delhi

Indian and Japanese warships conducted exercises in the Indian Ocean on Saturday, announced the navies of both the countries. The Japanese Maritime Self-Defence Force described the manoeuvres as designed to “promote mutual understanding” and consisted of four warships, two from each country.

Naval exercises are now routine between India and Japan, but the timing of the present exercise will be bracketed with the military stand-off between India and China in Ladakh.

“We are using the exercises for strategic communications,” said Vice-Admiral Pradeep Chauhan, director-general of the National Maritime Foundation. The navies were “not there for combat purposes but for signalling,” he added.

“We need to be proximate with our friends and the Chinese know there is a direct ladder of escalation between Japan and the United States,” said the Vice-Admiral.

The Indian navy training vessels INS Rana and INS Kulush were joined by the Japanese navy’s JS Kashima and JS Shimayuki. The Japanese embassy in New Delhi said this was the 15th such exercise in three years. “The content of this exercise is tactical training and communications training,” said embassy spokesperson Toshihide Ando, “with no specific scenario.”

The Japanese navy has become one of the principal partners of the Indian Navy. Indian naval ships take part in the exercise, both bilaterally with their Japanese counterparts and as part of the Malabar Exercises, which include the United States.

Vice-Admiral Chauhan noted that Indian Army deployments were “sector specific” but India needed to apply pressure across military theatres. Exercises like these remind Beijing that Indian military can quickly deny air cover for Chinese naval assets in the Indian Ocean – and that such plans are ready. “They are still far away from deploying a carrier in the Indian Ocean,” he added.

Japan was one of the few countries who publicly supported India during the Doklam crisis. New Delhi and Beijing have preferred to let the Ladakh crisis be handled bilaterally, one reason it rejected US President Donald Trump’s offer of mediation. Tokyo has only expressed condolences over the deaths of the Indian soldiers in Galwan Valley and pointedly said nothing about Chinese casualties.

The Japanese navy has itself been upgraded and expanded in recent years because of the territorial disputes it has with an increasingly aggressive China. Despite its Pacific constitution, Tokyo has inducted a “helicopter destroyer” that has the some tonnage as India’s aircraft carriers and is now building a “helicopter carrier” which has a full flight deck.

Japan has one of the best non-nuclear submarines in the world and cutting edge anti-submarine warfare technology. Masashi Nishihara, head of the Japanese defence think tank, Research Institute for Peace and Security, says, “We are leaders in submarine detection. Not only can we find them, we can identify any variety of submarine.” (Click to Source)

 

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10 Signs Of The Looming Seven-Year Tribulation

BY JONATHAN BRENTNER/JONATHANBRENTNER.COMJUNE 10, 2020

Have you ever wondered during the past few months if the seven-year tribulation has already begun? I know that it hasn’t yet started because Scripture says that we will be with the Lord before the antichrist establishes a covenant with Israel that starts the clock ticking for this time of God’s wrath (Dan. 9:27; 2 Thess. 2:3-8).
Although the tribulation has not yet started, we see the beginning of conditions we know will be much worse during this seven-year period. I believe this is God’s way of getting the attention of the world before His judgments begin. He’s also assuring us that His appearing is imminent and we will soon be with Him in heaven and the place He is now preparing for us.
I have picked ten signs that tell us the tribulation is rapidly approaching.
1 FAMINE
Revelation 6:8 tells us under the fourth seal, the rider on the pale horse is “given authority over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence . . . .” Deadly famines will occur during the tribulation; they will be a factor in wiping out one-fourth of the world’s population during the seal judgments described in Revelation 6.
According to a story published the National Geographic. website on May 12, 2020, swarms of gigantic locusts are swarming parts of East Africa bringing with them great famine. The National Geographic story also stated, “Some 13 million people in Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Djibouti, and Eritrea already suffer from ‘severe food insecurity’ . . . meaning they may go without eating for an entire day or have run out of food altogether.”
The National Geographic story also noted that swarms of locusts can destroy up to “300 million pounds of crops” in a day. Can you imagine the disaster this can bring to already impoverished nations? India also reports the presence of large swarms of locusts.
2 INFLATION
Revelation 6:6 reveals that a time of great inflation lies ahead for the world during the tribulation such that a “quart of wheat” will sell for a day’s wages.
Do we see the potential for this in our world? Absolutely! Venezuela stands as an example of devastating inflation caused by government debt and printing of money.
The enormous debt in the United States alone along with its printing of money during the past decade has already pushed the economy to the edge of disaster.  That, along with exceedingly high unemployment of over forty million, has moved America ever so close to a complete collapse.
Any more shocks will push it over the edge to great economic catastrophe and mind-boggling inflation and bring the same to the world.
3 VIOLENCE
Revelation 9:21 tells us this this about people during the tribulation, “nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.” Just as in the days of Noah, violence will fill the earth during the tribulation.
The antichrist will cause the killing of a large number of saints during this time. Revelation 7:9-14 pictures a large multitude of martyrs that have come out of the “great tribulation.” These are no doubt the same ones John refers to in 6:9 who were killed “for the word of God and witness they have borne.” We already see this violence against Christians in our world and the seeds of it in the United States.
Can there be any doubt regarding the deadly intentions of the left in America who advocate abortion up to and after birth, who put patients sick with COVID-19 in nursing homes  killing thousands of the elderly, and who send police to stop worship services? Someday the rage and hatred of the left in the US will erupt into violent and deadly persecution against those who hold fast to the Word of God, if not before the rapture then surely after it.
4 THE INCREASE OF ANTI-SEMITISM
We also know that the second half of the tribulation will be a time of deadly violence against the Jewish people (Matt. 24:15-20). We see the seeds of much anti-Semitism at work in our world.
New York City, home to 1.8 million Jews, saw a record number of anti-Semitic attacks in 2019. France and Germany are rapidly becoming unsafe places for the Jewish people to lie.
We also see rampant anti-Semitism at the United Nations. During the first couple months of the 2019-2020 session of the UN, it adopted 18 anti-Israel resolutions compared with just 7 concerning other nations.
5 THE NEW WORLD ORDER
Scripture tells us that a world government will dominate the entire earth during the tribulation over which the antichrist will seize control (Dan. 7:24-26; Rev. 13:1-10). Today, we see this coming one-world government forming before our eyes.
The UN now has a web page titled “Let’s Take Our Planet Back” at https://unnwo.org/. An easy way to remember the link is to think “United Nations New World Order.” This website represents a more blatant revelation of the UN’s desire to create a New World Order although it has always been quite visible under its stated Agenda 2030 goals of establishing a Marxist world order by 2030.
The website puts a positive spin on the seventeen goals of Agenda 2030, which in reality reflect a Marxist/Fascist world government in total control of the lives of people in every nation. The goals of the New Green Deal in America mesh perfectly with those of Agenda 2030; I believe its goal is to bring the United States into the New World Order.
6 SURRENDERING OF RIGHTS
Since the onset of COVID-19, the willingness of people in the United States to surrender their rights and freedoms has astounded me. Many blindly follow unconstitutional restrictions without protest or any resistance whatsoever.
This has been a successful test run for the globalists. The elite have learned that with a world crisis and control of the media, many people will unwittingly submit to whatever the government tells them with little or no resistance as long as it’s for the “common good.”
When the tribulation arrives on planet earth, great fear and panic will also lead to a surrendering of rights and freedoms that will enable the globalists to finalize their plans for a New World Order.
7 THE MARK OF THE BEAST
I do not believe that Bill Gates is the antichrist nor do I think that his vaccine and its accompanying tattoo is the mark of the beast that we find described in Revelation 13:16-18. However, I do believe these things are also preparing the world for the control that the antichrist will exert over the world during the tribulation.
The idea that the government can require a vaccine along with proof of it to leave one’s home and participate in society would have been thought tyrannical just a decade ago. But now, after the fear generated in the media over COVID-19, multitudes now accept such an idea and see no problem with it.
In addition to this, we now have the technology for the antichrist to implement such a program worldwide. Revelation 13:16-18 is not here yet, but it’s springing to life before our eyes.
8 MIDDLE EAST TENSION
While the world remains distracted by COVID-19, tensions keep escalating in the Middle East. Israel has inflicted heavy damage on Iranian military installations in Syria in recent weeks. And, Iran continues to promise the world that it will soon wipe Israel off the map.
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s pledge to annex portions of the West Bank on July 1 is also increasing tensions in the region. The Palestinians and their allies say they will never accept the adding of land in Judea and Samaria to Israel and will most likely react violently to such an annexation.
The Gog-Magog War described in Ezekiel 38-39 seems closer than ever. The nations remain aligned precisely as we read in 38:1-13. It’s also interesting that Israeli Rabbis believe the war of Ezekiel 38-39 could begin at any moment.
9 APOSTASY
In both 1 and 2 Timothy, Paul warns of great apostasy in the church during the last days. This day has arrived. The widespread acceptance by so many churches of what the Bible labels as sin is just the tip of the iceberg.
Just as the apostle predicted in 2 Timothy 4:3-4, people today flock to false teachers in great numbers. In some cases, these so-called pastors have become multi-millionaires as a result of their perversion of the Gospel.
It’s far more popular for preachers today to regard vast sections of scriptural prophecy as allegory and proclaim a false, unbiblical hope to their congregations, one that denies the imminent return of Jesus.
The dangerous teaching that the church will triumph through the tribulation and bring in the millennial kingdom itself has attracted millions of Christians during the past few decades. It’s by far the fastest growing view of the end-times in churches today and yet another indicator of the great apostasy that exists in our time.
10 LAWLESSNESS
I added this point after reading the accounts of the rioting in Minneapolis that has spread to many other cities. Is this not a prime example of the lawlessness that Jesus said would appear during the tribulation? In Matthew 24:12. Jesus said this about the signs of the end of the age, “And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold.”
Paul refers to the antichrist as the “the man of lawlessness” in 2 Thessalonians 2:3. Right now we see the spirit of the antichrist surging throughout the United States as the anarchists destroy property and ruin the lives of thousands of people of all races.
As I look at all these ten indicators of the rapidly approaching tribulation, I am amazed that the true church remains earthbound. How much longer can it be before Jesus returns to take us to the place He’s preparing for us?
If the tribulation seems so close, that means that rapture is even nearer.
The economies of the world may recover from the brink of disaster and the push for a New World Order may decrease. However, at the moment this seems highly unlikely given the tremendous debt of many nations and the staggering high unemployment.
Forbes online magazine recently stated that as many as 42% of the jobs lost in American may be gone for good. Could the growing lawlessness and riots push the US and world closer to economic collapse? It’s entirely possible.
The history of the twentieth century tells us that the aftermath of great economic distress, war, or both provides fertile soil for the emergence of socialist/fascist dictators. I believe the antichrist will arise from the ashes of the coming worldwide chaos to seize control of the coming New World Order.
Given the condition of our world at the moment, it will not take much to plunge the world into a great economic disaster or trigger the Gog-Magog War. The resulting chaos will provide the perfect opportunity for Satan to place his man in charge of the world order, which he will do.
The good news is that we will be with Jesus before the devil unveils “the man of lawlessness” to the world. (Click to Source)
Take heart; Jesus is coming soon!
Maranatha!
Originally published at Jonathan Brentner – reposted with permission.

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Chemicals supplied by China play a big role in America’s illegal drug trade

Thursday, June 11, 2020 by: Isabelle Z.

(Natural News) Coronavirus isn’t the only deadly epidemic that can be traced to China; factories in the country have also been involved in supplying huge amounts of precursor chemicals to Mexican super labs to produce methamphetamines and other drugs that end up on American streets.

Precursor chemicals are used for the illegal manufacture of narcotics and psychoactive substances. However, they also have legitimate commercial applications and are used legally in consumer products such as medicines and fragrances, as well as for industrial processes. One example of this is phenylacetic acid, which is legally used to produce penicillin and cleaning solutions but can also be used to illegally manufacture methamphetamines.

A former special agent for the DEA, Derek Maltz, told One News Now that China’s participation in the drug crisis that is killing people around world, particularly in America, is an “underreported story” that has been going on for many years.

He said that while the DEA did a great job of stunting the ability of what he termed “mom and pop” labs in the U.S. to make meth, drug kingpins in Mexico spotted an opportunity to make a lot of money, so they began bringing significant quantities of precursor chemicals from China and other Asian countries into Mexican ports, from which point they went on to be used to make street drugs in labs around the country.

“Cartels started dominating the methamphetamine production business inside of Mexico,” he said. “Cartels like the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco Cartel built super-labs in Mexico to produce massive amounts of methamphetamines, up to seven tons of meth every three days.”

The synthetic drug market is highly profitable for them, he says, pointing out that China is home to more than 150,000 chemical companies and that the country is earning millions of dollars by selling “these poisons.”

They are also making a lot of money by selling massive amounts of fentanyl to Mexican cartels, and some Americans are even managing to buy some of these chemicals from websites in China and having them shipped directly to their homes.

In addition, the Chinese are helping the money laundering for these cartels in the U.S. as law enforcement has a far more difficult time penetrating ethnic Chinese groups than the Mexican ones, given the high number of Spanish-speaking informants used by law enforcement.

Maltz believes that money may not be the only motivation behind China’s actions, saying: “America is a big adversary to China, so it’s not far-fetched to think the Chinese are purposely killing Americans and making millions of dollars while doing it.”

Coronavirus crisis in Wuhan disrupted the drug trade

Wuhan will forever be associated with coronavirus, but prior to the pandemic, it was known for producing the chemicals that are needed for fentanyl and other opioids. According to the L.A. Times, Mexican drug cartels were their biggest customers.

After the virus emerged and disrupted the fentanyl supply chain, however, Mexican drug traffickers saw their profits take a huge hit, and street drug prices across America started climbing. Lockdowns, travel bans, and other types of virus containment efforts have crippled the narcotics trade, and the Mexican production of meth and fentanyl was particularly hard hit as they were unable to get the precursor chemicals that usually arrive via plane or cargo ship from China.

In addition, new restrictions on entering the U.S. have been another big roadblock for the Mexican drug cartels, and the resulting loss of income is said to be contributing to escalating violence in Mexico, where the monthly homicide figures reached a two-year high in March. As pandemic-related lockdowns start being lifted, however, the illegal drug trade will soon be in full swing once again. (Click to Source)

Sources for this article include:

BigLeaguePolitics.com

OneNewsNow.com

LATimes.com

 

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India-China Tensions: Betting on a Quick Return to Status Quo Ante Would Be Hazardous

The dispute could actually be the harbinger of a new and nervous era, a geopolitical side-effect of the terrible COVID-19 pandemic which is racking the world.

Manoj Joshi – 15 HOURS AGO

There should be no surprise at the insipid Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) statement on the India-China border issue. It tells us what we already know 1) a meeting was held between the Corps Commanders of India and China on June 6 and 2) the two sides were maintaining their military and diplomatic engagement to peacefully resolve the situation.

There is no word on whether there has been any kind of disengagement, or even a commitment towards one in all, or any one of the problem areas—Galwan, Gogra or Pangong Tso. We may, in the coming months, be able to persuade the Chinese to thin their deployments near the Line of Actual Control (LAC), but betting on a quick return to the status quo ante would be hazardous.

A new and nervous era

A lot of the commentary we have seen on the Sino-Indian contretemps on the LAC has been about history, geopolitics and cartography. It could actually be the harbinger of a new and nervous era, a geopolitical side-effect of the terrible COVID-19 pandemic which is racking the world.

Instead of following the rational path of uniting to fight a common public health calamity, as we have done in the case of polio, HIV, small pox and so on, this time, geopolitical nerve points are being deliberately inflamed.

The US seems to be moving from trade war to decoupling and has successfully persuaded its old allies, Australia and the UK, to once again march to its drumbeat. Japan, which was on the verge of an entente with China earlier this year, seems to have drawn back. And China which is never too comfortable with disorderly things, is like a blindfolded person, hitting out in all directions with the belief it is protecting itself.

And then there is India. As usual, after the “masterstroke” that was the lockdown, the Narendra Modi government is trying to cope with its consequences. And as it appears unable to do so, it a) throws the issue back to the states, after having ridden roughshod over them in the first place and b) simply declares victory, even as people are starting to die across the country in ever larger numbers from a pandemic multiplied by the original “masterstroke” without any supporting plan to exploit its advantages.

So what has happened on the border? First and foremost, the LAC is something of a ghost line. It’s not delimited on any map, leave alone marked on the ground by a fence or boundary pillars. Whether this side of a nullah or a ridge is Chinese territory, or that, is a matter of perception and, when push comes to shove, physical possession.

So, whether it is in Galwan or in the Pangong Tso Finger 4-Finger 8 area, the system worked when both sides observed the rules of the game, worked out laboriously through a regime of Confidence Building Measures – the 1993 Border Peace and Tranquility Agreement, the 1996 Military CBM agreement, the 2005 Protocol on CBM implementation along the LAC, and the Border Defence Cooperation Agreement of 2013.

Now, one of the parties seems to be suggesting that new rules be worked out. It is true that China has, for the past decade, trying to get India to freeze its border infrastructure construction. It is also true that India has, instead rightly accelerated the process since it was badly placed in terms of infrastructure along the LAC, as compared to the Chinese. Because of this, curiously, it maintained a stronger forward presence along the LAC than the Chinese did. And some of this is clearly making the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) nervous. Whether it was the COVID-19 outbreak, or something else, it has decided to act now.

A warning from 2017

But we should have heeded the warning from 2017 that was contained in an article in the South China Morning Post in the wake of the Doklam crisis, written by Senior Colonel Zhu Bo, a familiar figure in the Chinese information war circuit and an honorary fellow in the PLA Academy of Military Sciences. According to Zhu, India would be the net loser of the crisis because “the disputed border was not on China’s strategic radar” till the Doklam standoff. The PLA had since reconsidered its assessment of the strategic importance of the Sino-Indian border and would begin to upgrade its military capabilities there. And that is what has happened.

Till Doklam, China had a relaxed posture, keeping just five PLA brigades in Tibet with a capacity to reinforce them to 30 divisions. Its Air Force lacked adequate bases, and even where the PLAF operated, the bases lacked bomb-proof shelters for parking combat aircraft. But things have changed in the last three years. The PLA is being equipped with newer weapons and more cantonments have come up to house them permanently. And so have bomb-proof facilities for fighters, at least in the main base at Lhasa’s Gonggar airfield.

All this has, of course, been happening in recent years, but now we are seeing a new nervous tic that COVID-19 may have given to the global body politic. It could be signalling hard times ahead. (Click to Source)

Manoj Joshi is a distinguished fellow, Observer Research Foundation, New Delhi.

 

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Why Another Sino-Indian War Is Unlikely

Current tensions are concerning, but the situation is much different today than in 1962.

By Ameya Pratap Singh – June 01, 2020

Starting with hand-to-hand scuffles and violent clashes between about 250 Indian and Chinese military personnel at Pangong Tso, a large lake in eastern Ladakh region, on May 5, the Sino-Indian border has emerged as a site of increasing military confrontation between the two Asian powers. The disputed border regions are heavy with risks of escalation and conflict.

Some Indian sources claim that as many as 10,000 soldiers of the People’s Liberation Army have encroached upon Indian territory. Based on media reports, Lieutenant General H.S. Panag (retd.) speculates that the Chinese have “physically secured 3-4 km of India’s territory along Galwan River, and the entire area between Finger 5 and Finger 8 along the north bank of Pangong Tso, a distance of nearly 8-10 km.” Chinese sources in turn blame India for having first crossed the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Galwan, and entering Chinese territory in Aksai Chin. Both states have varying perceptions of the LAC, and attempts to clarify its alignment have stalled since 2002. Therefore, claims of incursions on both sides are debatable.

The dynamics of escalation have perturbed policy analysts. Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan argues that “if China has indeed moved forward and built roads and check-posts beyond where it has traditionally had such facilities, India faces a fait accompli. New Delhi faces the choice of either escalating or accepting the new reality on the ground.” A former Indian ambassador to China, Ashok Kantha, also expressed his anxieties at Chinese attempts to alter the “status quo” on the border. Similarly, China has accused the “Indian Army of crossing into its territory and of blocking its patrols and attempting to unilaterally change the status on the LAC between the two countries in Sikkim and Ladakh.” As the crisis has escalated, both sides have sought a multifold increase in the military forces, fighter jets, helicopters, and towed artillery and ammunition stockpiled in the region, to better signal resolve and secure deterrence capabilities.

So far, the behavior of both parties seems to be reproducing what Robert Jervis has referred to as the “security dilemma spiral.” In response to China’s historically dominant military and infrastructure position in the border areas, which predates the 1962 Sino-Indian War, India has long sought to ramp up its road building capabilities under its Border Roads Organization (BRO). In November 2019, the BRO finally completed the first phase of road networks envisioned under the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS) in 1999 to bolster Indian patrolling along the Sino-Indian border. Close to 61 roads along the India-China border totaling 3,346 km have been constructed. In particular, roads built through the finger area of Pangong Tso region, and connecting the Darbuk-Shayok-Daulat Beg Oldie road in Galwan Valley, are most likely to have aggravated Chinese fears of India wanting to reclaim its lost territory in Aksai Chin. Similarly, during the Doklam crisis in 2017, it was China’s road-building that elicited a military stand-off from India. Thus, both states in their pursuit of effective deterrence in border areas have used policies that have served to heighten concerns surrounding each other’s military motivations, progressively escalating subsequent border disputes, and leading to the presently hostile situation.

However, contrary to widespread fears, another Sino-Indian war is unlikely to be in the offing. In the shadow of nuclear weapons, a limited conventional war on the Sino-Indian border — somewhat akin to the month-long clash in 1962 – can be avoided for several reasons.

First, this is because of the nature of the dispute and the lack of ideological fundamentalism and issue indivisibility. Unlike the United States, which has increasingly begun to view the geopolitical competition with China as a battle for values such as freedom of navigation or democracy or the preservation of the liberal international order, India and China do not see each other through such an ideological lens. The authoritarian regime of the Chinese Community Party is not perceived to be antithetical to India’s democratic character, and vice versa. India’s long-term strategy, as former Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale puts it, is to retain its strategic autonomy, and pursue alignments based “on issues, not ideology.”

Hence, while both parties have been cautious of each other’s maneuvers on the border, they have refrained from linking these to existential attributes of national identity, which are notorious for inflating the significance of disputed territories — for example in the case of Kashmir, Tibet, or Taiwan. In fact, Beijing has long held that the border dispute is a remnant of British colonialism and its reckless cartographic practices, rather than being driven by India’s territorial expansionism. On the Indian side, Army Chief General Manoj Mukund Naravane, in a break from traditional bouts of recrimination between adversaries, accepted that due to differing notions of the LAC, “both sides” were guilty of aggressive behavior in Eastern Ladakh and North Sikkim. This choice of words effectively yielded the use of any victimhood narratives that could be mobilized to create moral justification for retaliatory action.

Second, the risks of inadvertent pre-emption are also not nearly as high as they were in 1962, when Nehru’s ill-fated “forward policy” was met by overwhelming Chinese military force. This is because of a series of five agreements signed between India and China to address disputes arising over the LAC: 1) the 1993 Agreement on the Maintenance of Peace and Tranquility along the LAC; 2) the 1996 Agreement on Confidence-Building Measures in the Military Field Along the LAC, 3) the 2005 Protocol on Modalities for the Implementation of Confidence-Building Measures in the Military Field Along the LAC; 4) the 2012 Agreement on the Establishment of a Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs; and 5) the 2013 Border Defense Cooperation Agreement.

These agreements provide a modus operandi for diplomatic engagement at the military and political levels, as well as a set of “status quo” commitments both sides can return to in case of escalation. They proved effective during the 16-day stand-off between Indian and Chinese forces in eastern Ladakh near the village of Chumar, the military confrontation at Burtse in the Depsang plains in northern Ladakh in 2015, and the Doklam crisis in 2017.

Indian Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Anurag Srivastava has also affirmed New Delhi’s intention to de-escalate the current stand-off based on these agreements. He stated that “the two sides [already] have established mechanisms to resolve such situations peacefully through dialogue.” Similarly, the Chinese official statement also reiterated Beijing’s commitment “to uphold peace and tranquility in border areas.” Summit diplomacy is likely to return if the crisis escalates further.

Third is the element of ambiguity and the “fog” surrounding the details of the military stand-off. Typically, analysts have viewed “nationalist strongmen” as promoters of aggressive state behavior. But, in this case, the ability of both governments to control national media, and the inscrutability of the facts related to the dispute, aided efforts to manage domestic audience costs. For instance, media reports of 15-20 personnel of the Indo-Tibetan Border Police force being detained by the Chinese were categorically refuted by the Indian side. This meant that no domestic pressure for retaliation arose and no great reputational damage was suffered. In the aftermath of the Doklam crisis, similar ambiguity allowed both sides to claim tactical victories for themselves and diffuse the situation successfully. In India, criticism has been incrementally rising with respect to the Modi government’s lack of transparency on the matter, but it is unlikely to reach electorally harmful proportions.

Lastly, the material costs of limited war for both parties far outweigh potential gains. For China, conflict on the border with India would diminish its ability to meet key security challenges in the South China Sea, thus making it vulnerable to the United States, which Beijing considers its primary security competitor. It seems unlikely that Beijing would want to risk a two-front war. Additionally, reputational damages suffered due to COVID-19, pre-existing fears surrounding China’s rise, and India’s conventional and nuclear deterrence capabilities will all temper Beijing’s pre-emptive use of military force. Similarly, for India, the primary security challenge remains Pakistan-based terrorist infiltration on the Kashmir border. More importantly, beyond the protection of vital strategic points on either side that allow military forces to effectively defend and patrol their territories in challenging high-altitude mountainous regions, the vast tracts of disputed land along the LAC do not hold any important material resources such as oil, precious mineral reserves, or ethnic-kin populations. The benefits of territorial aggrandizement are therefore, limited to deterrence value and the natural terrain offers few advantages to offensive forces.

The implausibility of war however, does not imply that either side will yield recourse to fait accompli strategies or cease to fortify and buttress military positions in border areas. According to a report by former Indian foreign secretary Shyam Saran, China had earlier occupied 640 sq. km of Indian territory in Eastern Ladakh in 2013. So India will continue to reverse China’s military and infrastructure advantages to deter territorial overtures in the future, and China is likely to continue to raise the costs of India’s attempts at doing so.

Moving forward, the two states need to manage their rivalry, rather than hastily attempt to resolve outstanding border issues. The shifting axis of material power means that a negotiated solution is unlikely to be realized soon. As military scuffles rise, further elaborating de-escalation protocols and intensifying military to military dialogue and confidence building measures will prove most rewarding. Until the border dispute is ripe for settlement, India and China must carefully navigate the treacherous terrain between partnership and full-spectrum rivalry. (Click to Source)

Ameya Pratap Singh is a DPhil student in Area Studies (South Asia) at the University of Oxford.

 

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‘Back off, India,’ China is itching for war with India, but India is not backing off

There could be a small-scale war between India and China

by Akshay Narang – 26 May 2020

Face-offs between the Indian Army and China’s PLA troops along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in eastern Ladakh have now taken the shape of a tense eyeball-to-eyeball standoff situation.

Comparisons are being made with the Doklam stand-off in 2017, but a careful analysis reveals that the situation here is more serious than the 2017 stand-off. The ongoing tensions in eastern Ladakh could see China and India get involved in a swift, limited theatre armed conflict- one that might be the biggest of all armed confrontations between the two Asian neighbours since the 1967 Nathu La battle.

The reasons for considering the ongoing tensions as more serious than the Doklam stand-off are many. First of all, the recent reports suggest that the stand-off is not limited to one particular spot unlike the 2017 stand-off. According to the Indian Express, the People’s Liberation Army has intruded across three places in the Galwan river area in Ladakh. At each of these three points, 800-1000 Chinese soldiers are said to have crossed into India’s side of the LAC, the effective Sino-India border.

On the other hand, the troops of the two countries are also locked in a tense situation at the Pangong Tso lake, almost 200 kilometres South of the Galwan valley area. This gives an idea of the broad range of eastern Ladakh which is currently mired in tensions.

The Chinese intrusion itself is unprecedented because the LAC in Galwan valley corresponds to China’s official claim line. Therefore, the Chinese troops are intruding into the Indian territory even as per Beijing’s perception of the Line of Actual Control (LAC).

Secondly, the face-offs here are more intense than they were in Doklam before the 73-day stand-off situation developed in 2017. Sources told ANI, “The behaviour of the Chinese has been like the Pakistan-backed stone-pelters who use stones and sticks to target Indian security forces in the Kashmir valley. The Chinese troops came armed with sticks, clubs with barbed wires and stones in an area near the Pangong Tso lake during a face-off with Indian troops there.”

Sources also hint larger numbers during the face-off as the Chinese troops arrived like “locust swarms”. An India Today report has revealed satellite images which show tents, trucks and earth-moving machinery in the Galwan river valley. 

Thirdly, the local border mechanisms have failed to defuse tensions that creates a peculiar situation. According to sources, several rounds of “hotline talks” and Brigadier-level negotiations have taken place but there are no signs of disengagement yet.

And it is safe to say that tensions are not getting defused because the stakes are high- Beijing’s growing concerns over the China Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) and Gilgit-Baltistan have set the tone for increased Chinese activity in Ladakh.

CPEC is too big a project for China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), as it helps Beijing reach the Gwadar port in Pakistan. This holds strategic importance for the Dragon as it helps it to bypass the Strait of Malacca- the main shipping lane between the Indian Ocean and the Pacific Ocean which is currently dominated by the United States.

China’s concerns are fuelled by India’s growing ambitions and assertiveness in the region. Aksai Chin and Gilgit-Baltistan both of which happen to be Indian territories occupied by China and Pakistan respectively happen to be de jure Indian territories.

Beijing raised the issue of Article 370 abrogation at the UNSC three times at Pakistan’s behest. But what Beijing is also worried about is the emboldened character of India, wherein New Delhi is vocal about its legitimate claims on Aksai Chin and Gilgit-Baltistan. India has been claiming its territory in a far more assertive manner post-Article 370 abrogation. If India succeeds, China would lose the CPEC which Beijing expressly agrees to be a pivotal part of the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI).

At the ground level, the PLA sees red in some solid road infrastructure that India has built near the LAC. The new roads connect India to the LAC, or in fact run along the alignment of the LAC in these areas.

And then what is happening in Ladakh could be a result of what is happening beyond Ladakh. China is disillusioned by India’s particularly assertive behaviour on international issues concerning China. India has started to take a stand on different issues- signing an EU-drafted document for investigation into the zoonotic origins of the Coronavirus and somewhat tilting in favour of Taiwan’s pro-Independence leadership. To irk the Dragon further, India is also accelerating the exodus of foreign companies from China.

China is trying to warn India against taking such a bold stance through border clashes. But India isn’t backing off, while China cannot afford to disengage- the country got a bloody nose during the Doklam stand-off and the PLA cannot afford another embarrassment.

China wants top-level politico-diplomatic intervention from India’s side, but India is not even a pale shadow of the timid player that it used to be. At the root of the skirmishes is India’s growing ambitions and assertiveness. China wants to cut India to size, while the latter is not backing off. This is why the Ladakh stalemate might not end any time soon, and we might as well witness the biggest short-term armed confrontation since 1967. (Click to Source)

 

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