Sino-File

Economic suicide

Economic suicide
Dec 3, 2021 (WiC 566)
“A Taiwan emergency is a Japan emergency. That is, it’s an emergency for the US-Japan alliance as well”

Former Japanese leader Abe Shinzo issues a warning during a speech on Wednesday. He said a Chinese invasion of Taiwan could see Tokyo deploy its military. Describing an attack as “economic suicide”, Abe said a “military adventure in Taiwan” would have a “grave impact” on the global economy, the Financial Times reported. “In other words, China would be severely hurt,” Abe predicted.

Olympic outreach

Olympic outreach
Nov 26, 2021 (WiC 565)
“I offered her our support and to stay in touch at any time of her convenience, which she obviously appreciated”

Emma Terho, Finnish former ice hockey medallist and chair of the IOC (International Olympic Committee) Athletes’ Commission, discusses her recent video call with Peng Shuai, who she said was “doing fine”. The 30-minute call was arranged with Terho and IOC president Thomas Bach amid international concern about the 35 year-old Chinese tennis player’s welfare. On November 2 Peng made allegations online about being sexually assaulted by a retired, high-level Chinese government official and promptly disappeared from the public eye. During this week’s call Peng told the IOC she was “safe and well” and at home.

The nuclear option

The nuclear option
Nov 19, 2021 (WiC 564)
“China is not developing hypersonic forces for some bolt out of the blue attack on America. It’s trying to lock the US and China into a deeper ‘mutual vulnerability’ stalemate, so the US cannot play the nuclear card in a conventional war, for example, over Taiwan”

Caitlin Talmadge, a nuclear expert at Georgetown University, talks to the Financial Times about China’s nuclear weapons buildup. In July the Chinese were the first to fly a hypersonic glide vehicle around the Earth (reportedly it could evade US defences by flying over the South Pole).

Working together

Working together
Nov 12, 2021 (WiC 563)
“We both need to think big and be responsible. We both see that the challenge of climate change is an existential and severe one”

Statement of Chinese special climate envoy Xie Zhenhua during an unscheduled news conference held with the US at the COP26 summit in Glasgow, in which both nations symbolically pledged to work together to slow global warming and take “enhanced climate actions”. However, the Washington Post pointed out the joint declaration was “short on firm deadlines or specific commitments”.