Pubblicato in: Cina, Geopolitica Asiatica, Problemi militari

USS Carl Vinson e North Korea. Ecco perché la flotta è scappata. – Bloomberg

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2017-05-03.

Washington. White House. 001

Se la notizia non la avesse data l’Agenzia Bloomberg la avremmo ritenuta essere una barzelletta.

Abbiamo aspettato qualche giorno a pubblicarla, in attesa di una smentita, che non è arrivata.

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«The U.S. Navy flotilla sailing toward the Korean peninsula to deter Kim Jong Un’s regime lacks a key capability: It can’t shoot down ballistic missiles»

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«The USS Carl Vinson and the aircraft carrier’s accompanying destroyers and cruiser are expected to arrive in waters near the peninsula this week, carrying a full complement of weaponry, including scores of Tomahawk cruise and anti-ship missiles, radar-jamming aircraft and non-stealthy “Super Hornet” jets built by Boeing Co.»

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«That firepower brings a lot to any fight, but the Navy’s lack of ballistic missile defense capability …. force has a significant gap as it warns North Korea against another missile test and pressures it to back down from its nuclear program»

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«They aren’t equipped with the version of the Aegis surveillance system made by Lockheed Martin Corp. that can track long-range ballistic missiles or Raytheon Co.’s SM-3 interceptors that are capable of bringing down medium and longer-range ballistic missiles.»

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«And the three South Korean “Sejong the Great”-class destroyers currently in operation don’t have ballistic missile defense capability»

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Non si intende minimamente entrare nel merito del problema.

Si sa per esperienza che quando si parla di operazioni militari una gran massa delle notizie sono mera disinformazione.

Però, l’articolo di Bloomberg lascia alquanto perplessi.

Al momento attuale i sistemi di arma sono così numerosi da imporre altrettanto numerosi sistemi di contro azione. Gli americani hanno ottimi sistemi di arma contro i missili balistici, e non è assolutamente detto che essi debbano essere montati direttamente sulla portaerei e non piuttosto sulle navi di appoggio e di scorta.

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Voci, e quindi pettegolezzi non verificati ed inverificabili, hanno anche suggerito che la North Korea sia stata dotata di sistemi missilistici 3M22 Zircon russi o sistemi equivalenti cinesi. La notizia sembrerebbe essere destituita di fondamento, essendo ufficialmente tale sistema ancora in fase di test ed essendo del tutto inverosimile che la Russia conceda i suoi più avanzati sistemi a paesi terzi, per di più non in stretti rapporti diplomatici.


Bloomberg. 2017-04-26. Trump ‘Armada’ Sent to Deter Kim Can’t Shoot Down His Missiles

– Vinson strike group escorts aren’t equipped for interceptions

– Navy vessels homeported in Japan would be needed for that

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The U.S. Navy flotilla sailing toward the Korean peninsula to deter Kim Jong Un’s regime lacks a key capability: It can’t shoot down ballistic missiles.

The USS Carl Vinson and the aircraft carrier’s accompanying destroyers and cruiser are expected to arrive in waters near the peninsula this week, carrying a full complement of weaponry, including scores of Tomahawk cruise and anti-ship missiles, radar-jamming aircraft and non-stealthy “Super Hornet” jets built by Boeing Co.

That firepower brings a lot to any fight, but the Navy’s lack of ballistic missile defense capability on the scene means the Trump administration’s high-profile show of force has a significant gap as it warns North Korea against another missile test and pressures it to back down from its nuclear program.

“One carrier by itself is not a game changer,” Omar Lamrani, a senior military analyst at Stratfor, a company that does geopolitical analysis, said in an interview. Although the Vinson-led group is getting a lot of attention, it’s “not going to do terribly much by itself,” he said.

Tensions on the peninsula have ratcheted up as President Donald Trump and Kim face off over North Korea’s continuing development of its nuclear and intercontinental ballistic missile program. Trump vowed in January that he wouldn’t let North Korea develop a nuclear weapon capable of reaching the U.S., and he said this month that the U.S. was sending an “armada” to the region. North Korea, in turn, called the Vinson’s deployment “intimidation and blackmail” and promised it would “react to a total war with an all-out war.”

This week the regime in Pyongyang conducted a live-fire artillery exercise east of the capital, while the USS Michigan, a nuclear-powered submarine capable of carrying 154 Tomahawks, arrived at the South Korean port of Busan. In a highly unusual move, the Navy publicly announced the visit. But North Korea, which marked the 85th anniversary of its army during the week, didn’t conduct another nuclear test.

Accompanying the Vinson, which is en route from the Philippine Sea south of Japan, are the destroyers USS Wayne E. Meyer and USS Michael Murphy and the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain. They aren’t equipped with the version of the Aegis surveillance system made by Lockheed Martin Corp. that can track long-range ballistic missiles or Raytheon Co.’s SM-3 interceptors that are capable of bringing down medium and longer-range ballistic missiles.

Nor are the modern Japanese Navy destroyers JS Samidare and JS Ashigara that joined the Vinson group for exercises equipped for missile defense detection or intercepts, a Japanese Navy spokesman confirmed. And the three South Korean “Sejong the Great”-class destroyers currently in operation don’t have ballistic missile defense capability, Tom Callender, a naval forces analyst with the Washington-based Heritage Foundation, said in an interview.

Risk to Seoul

While the Obama administration began the process of deploying Thaad, a high-altitude missile defense system, to the South Korean mainland, the hardware isn’t fully operational yet either. That leaves Seoul — just 35 miles (56 kilometers) south of the demilitarized zone — and the rest of the country more vulnerable to attack.

Asked about the Vinson carrier group, Navy Commander Gary Ross, a Pentagon spokesman, said via email that “we don’t discuss specific capabilities of weapons systems.” He added that “no single capability defends against all threats. Rather it is the employment of integrated, multi-layered land and sea-based systems that provide missile defense” for the U.S. and allies.

If the Trump administration wants to buttress its threats — at the risk of escalating the crisis — it could deploy toward Korea some or all of the six Navy vessels capable of defending against ballistic missiles that are now based at Yokosuka, on the eastern side of Japan. Just moving those ships toward the Korean peninsula would signal to the world U.S. action to stop a missile test is more imminent and would be seen as an urgent threat by Pyongyang.

Navy Admiral Harry Harris, the head of U.S. forces in Korea and the Pacific, cited those ships’ capabilities Wednesday in response to questions about whether the Vinson is capable of deterring ballistic missile launches.

“We have ballistic missile ships in the Sea of Japan, in the East Sea, that are capable of defending against ballistic missile attacks,” Harris told the House Armed Services Committee. He added that the carrier group is well-equipped to defend itself against attack with its own escort warships, saying, “If it flies, it will die, if it’s flying against the Carl Vinson strike group.”

The six vessels in Japan are the cruiser USS Shiloh and the destroyers USS Stethem, Barry, Benfold, Curtis Wilbur and John S. McCain. A seventh, the Fitzgerald, is currently at sea conducting a maritime exercise in waters west of Japan, the Navy said in a statement.

Sea of Japan

Those U.S. ships “would be in a good position to engage medium-range ballistic missiles going into the Sea of Japan, which is where the previous North Korean test shots have gone,” said Bryan Clark, a naval analyst with the Washington-based Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, who previously served as a special assistant to the Chief of Naval Operations.

That presence off of Japan means that “when the Vinson gets there, it will not need to bring additional BMD capability,” Clark added, referring to ballistic missile defense.

The cruisers and destroyers “bring a significant capability to the region,” Lieutenant Commander William Knight, spokesman for the Navy Pacific Fleet, said in an email.

Yet even if Aegis-equipped vessels are stationed near Korea and Japan, in the case of a North Korean ICBM test they wouldn’t be able to shoot it down immediately after launch, said David Wright, a missile defense analyst with the Union of Concerned Scientists.

“There is a misconception that if it was close enough,” a U.S. Navy BMD vessel “could shoot a missile down during boost phase,” Wright said. “But it doesn’t have that capability. During boost phase the missile is an accelerating target, and Aegis doesn’t have the maneuverability to home in on such a target.”

Boost Phase

“Similarly, it would not be able to shoot down shorter-range missiles, like the Musudan, during boost phase,” he said. “You might be able to shoot it down after boost phase, but by that time North Korea would be able to get information about the most critical part of the trajectory, so that strategy is unlikely to slow” the regime’s missile development process, he said.

The Carl Vinson and its four strike squadrons of aircraft plus escort vessels with more than 300 Tomahawk and air-defense missiles “provide an impressive non-nuclear strategic deterrent,” the Heritage Foundation’s Callender said. The Vinson’s aircraft include the latest Super Hornets and Growler electronic jamming aircraft.

Tomahawks are highly capable of striking surface targets such as air defense systems, but they aren’t designed for missile defense or penetrating deeply buried facilities, bunkers or caves. The current “Tactical Tomahawk” version is capable of loitering over an area and being re-directed against new targets, such as wheeled or tracked missile launchers and mobile artillery.

Stealthy Bombers

If the U.S. were to conduct a preemptive strike on North Korea, the Vinson’s role would be to enable missions by stealthy B-2 bombers and F-22 fighters, Clark said.

The Vinson fleet would need to use its radar-jamming capabilities and Tomahawks to degrade North Korea’s existing air defense system “before conducting strikes against North Korean nuclear or missile facilities,” Clark said.

Strafor recently completed an assessment of North Korea’s nuclear challenge and plausible U.S. responses that concluded the regime has more than 1,000 missiles of various ranges and destructive power that could strike from across North Korea.

But their military utility is limited by the relatively small number of launchers, which would have to be reloaded for successive launches and vulnerable to U.S. and South Korean strikes.

 

 

Annunci
Pubblicato in: Demografia, Geopolitica Asiatica

Giappone. La tempesta annunciata incombe sul JGB.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2017-04-11.

2017-04-06__Giappone__001

L’immagine del Giappone è ben rappresentata dal treno ad alta velocità Hokkaido Shinkansen.

«The Hokkaido Shinkansen’s occupancy greatly varies from month to month; the rate hovered from 40% to 48% during the July-September tourist season but fell below 30% in November, then to 19% in January and February»

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Quando era stato progettato avrebbe dovuto viaggiare sempre pieno. Stracolmo.

L’errore dei progettisti è stato non tenere in debito conto la demografia giapponese, l’unico fattore facilmente e sicuramente prevedibile su lunghi archi temporali.

Nel 2016 il Giappone aveva un’età mediana di 46.9 anni ed una percentuale di over 65 del 27.28%. I vecchi non viaggiano e quel poco che fanno non è certo sulle linee squisitamente commerciali.

Il Giappone è un popolo di vecchietti, che pensano non certo a lavorare, ma solo a mantenere la propria pensione al meglio. Il gusto di imprendere è tipico dei giovani, non dei vecchi. E con un tasso di fertilità dell’1.41 la situazione non potrà fare altro che peggiorare.

Se questi semplici dati fanno la consolazione di Russia e Cina, che stanno pazientemente aspettando che il popolo giapponese si estingua per risolvere in modo definitivo il problema nipponico nell’est asiatico senza aver dovuto sparare un colpo, d’altro canto non dovrebbero proprio rallegrare né i giapponesi né gli occidentali. Ma costoro sembrerebbero non darsene mica poi tanto cruccio.

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Però il calo demografico porta inevitabilmente ad un calo produttivo e ad una riduzione dei consumi: così la stagnazione economica diventa ogni giorno che passa meno risolvibile.

Avendo assunto a dogma di fede l’assioma secondo il quale la crescita economica sia stimolata da tassi bassi, la Boj da molto tempo tiene tassi di interesse attorno allo zero.

Ma, ovviamente, nonostante oltre venti anni di tassi infimi, di ripresa economica non se ne vede nemmeno l’ombra. Quindi, da bravi ideologici, i giapponesi persevereranno.

Ma il sonno dei ventiquattro milioni e mezzo di pensionati non sono mica poi tanto tranquilli.

I contributi pensionistici versati non hanno avuto modo di essere rivalutati nel tempo, il numero dei pensionati è in continuo aumento, ed il numero dei lavoratori che versano attivamente i contributi diminuisce.

La conseguenza è lapalissiana.

Il Government Pension Investment Fund non sa più a quale santo votarsi.

«The Bank of Japan’s zero interest rate policy is forcing Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund to take on more risk via an increased portfolio allocation to stocks, as near-zero yields have made Japanese government bonds nonviable as core holdings»

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«The GPIF aims to secure returns equivalent to the rate of wage growth plus 1.7 percentage points in order to make good on payouts»

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«The rationale behind the change is that a portfolio heavily biased toward JGBs would fall short of the yield target once the economy sheds deflationary pressures»

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«The new policy sets allocation goals of 35% for domestic bonds, 25% for domestic equities, 15% for foreign bonds and 25% for overseas stocks»

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«Before the realignment, 60% was the desired proportion for domestic bonds»

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Ma si sa che il diavolo si cela nei particolari.

Il Government Pension Investment Fund era uno dei principali acquirenti dei titoli di stato emessi dalla Boj, che li emette a piene mani per iniettare liquidità nel sistema. Incrementando così il debito sovrano che si avvia al 270% in rapporto al pil.

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Riassumiamo.

Il Giappone, come peraltro la gran parte delle nazioni occidentali, si sta semplicemente suicidando, sotto gli occhi compiaciuti dei suoi competitors.


Asian Review. 2017-04-05. Ultralow rate driving Japan’s public pension fund out of JGBs

TOKYO — The Bank of Japan’s zero interest rate policy is forcing Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund to take on more risk via an increased portfolio allocation to stocks, as near-zero yields have made Japanese government bonds nonviable as core holdings.

The GPIF aims to secure returns equivalent to the rate of wage growth plus 1.7 percentage points in order to make good on payouts. The fund overhauled its base asset allocation policy in October 2014 amid the reflation push by the government. The rationale behind the change is that a portfolio heavily biased toward JGBs would fall short of the yield target once the economy sheds deflationary pressures.  

The new policy sets allocation goals of 35% for domestic bonds, 25% for domestic equities, 15% for foreign bonds and 25% for overseas stocks. Before the realignment, 60% was the desired proportion for domestic bonds.

The heavier focus on equities resulted in an investment profit of more than 10 trillion yen ($90 billion) for October-December 2016, a quarterly record due to gains in Japanese and foreign stocks. Cumulative income after the portfolio overhaul has climbed to 11.7 trillion yen.

The solid returns are good news, but a concerning shift has been occurring in the fund’s domestic bond portfolio. Allocations on those low-risk assets has fallen below the 35% target and hit a record low of 33.26% at the end of last year. Funds from redemptions of its Japanese government bond-holdings have been redirected toward short-term assets, lifting their share to 6.46%, the second-highest level on record.

This scenario is playing out because the interest rate outlook adopted in 2014 widely missed its mark. Yields not only failed to increase, but the BOJ’s monetary easing policy drove long-term interest rates into negative territory at one point. Long rates are currently hovering near zero. Since JGBs will generate hardly any interest income under such a rate environment, it is “difficult to justify JGB buying,” a person close to the GPIF noted.

Dividends and interest income used to make up two-thirds of the GPIF’s cumulative earnings. If JGBs with relatively higher returns continue to be redeemed, the income from JGBs will shrink further. This would make the GPIF’s portfolio even more susceptible to stock market fluctuations than it already is in the foreseeable future.


Asian Review. 2017-04-05. Lots of empty seats on Hokkaido Shinkansen

In dead of winter, new bullet train only 6% full at night.

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TOKYO — A year since its launch, and the Hokkaido Shinkansen, which runs between Shin-Aomori and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto stations, is struggling with low occupancy rates.

The rate through February was 7 percentage points higher than the previous forecast but still only 33%.

Passenger numbers have plunged with winter, dropping the line’s occupancy rate to below the 47% that the Hokuriku Shinkansen got its first year. The Hokuriku Shinkansen runs more or less west from Tokyo.

The Hokkaido Shinkansen’s occupancy greatly varies from month to month; the rate hovered from 40% to 48% during the July-September tourist season but fell below 30% in November, then to 19% in January and February.

By contrast, three airlines that have flights between Tokyo’s Haneda Airport and Hakodate saw their passenger rates during the 11 months from last April to February drop 5% below what they were in the year-earlier period.

The fastest that a bullet train can get passengers between Tokyo and Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto is four hours and two minutes. This barely eclipses the psychological four-hour barrier under which passengers are said to prefer trains over planes.

To attract passengers in the off-season, Hokkaido Railway, known as JR Hokkaido, plans to start marketing products with one-night stays in Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto before or after business.

“We have not had so many business travelers,” President Osamu Shimada said.

Since some trains are only 6% full at night, JR Hokkaido plans to sell special round-trip tickets between Shin-Hakodate-Hokuto and Shin-Aomori stations for 4,000 yen ($35.92), about 70% cheaper than the normal price — but only to people who live near the stations.

Pubblicato in: Cina, Geopolitica Asiatica

Cina. Mr Tillerson in visita a Pechino sabato prossimo.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2017-03-09.

Dorè. Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heaven. Lucifer

Dorè. Better to reign in Hell, than serve in Heaven. Lucifer


Ogniqualvolta sia possibile poter raggiungere uno stabile accordo in via diplomatica si riducono le possibilità di attriti conflittuali che alla fine, se fomentati, potrebbe anche spingere a conflitti armati.

Quanti ritengano che questo assunto possa essere considerato valida guida operazionale, dovrebbero allora convenire che sarebbe opportuno cercare di rimuovere gli ostacoli alle trattative, invece che rinfocolarli.

La pace è un bene prezioso, ma richiede anche una chiara visione della realtà.

«Il ministro cinese degli esteri chiede a Pyongyang di fermare il programma nucleare e a Usa e Seoul di cancellare le esercitazioni militari. “Due treni ad alta velocità uno contro l’altro”. Pechino è contraria al Thaad perché teme spionaggio attraverso i radar.» [Fonte]

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«Tillerson will arrive in Tokyo on March 15, continue to Seoul on March 17, and travel to Beijing on March 18, according to Toner. An earlier report by Japan’s Kyodo news agency said the secretary was expected in Japan on March 17-18 and would meet Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida.»

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«In each country, Secretary Tillerson will meet with senior officials to discuss bilateral and multilateral issues, including strategic coordination to address the advancing nuclear and missile threat from the DPRK, and reaffirm the administration’s commitment to further broaden and enhance US economic and security interests in the Asia-Pacific region»

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«At the news briefing, Toner also talked about Washington’s deployment of the anti-missile defense system THAAD – the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense – in South Korea, saying that the US had told China the anti-missile defense system was not meant to be a threat»

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«China on Tuesday reiterated its opposition to the deployment after a part of the THAAD battery»

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L’Asia sud orientale presenta molti problemi di non facile risoluzione.

La Cina sta rapidamente incrementando la sua dimensione economica e militare di potenza locoregionale, e di questo servirebbe prenderne serenamente atto.

La Korea del Nord ha ambizioni militari nucleari. Da una parte cerca di sviluppare l’armamento atomico, dall’altra un sistema di vettori per tali armamenti.

Il Giappone è la terza potenza economica mondiale, essendo stato da tempo superato dalla Cina. Ad una posizione economica di tutto rispetto sia associa una conduzione politica internazionale sommessa ed una presenza militare quasi nulla. Per quanto riguarda la difesa, il Giappone conta esclusivamente sull’alleanza con gli Stati Uniti, ma, correttamente, esige valide garanzie.

Si dovrebbero inoltre tenere presenti le istanze di tutti i paesi che formano una corolla a separazione del Mar Cinese del Sud e l’Oceano Pacifico, la collocazione politica e militare dei quali è elemento cardine nel mantenimento della pace n questa zona geopolitica e militare.

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Le situazioni in campo hanno subito nell’ultimo quinquennio grandi mutazioni. I trattati a suo tempo siglati e gli accordi raggiunti sembrerebbero non rispondere più alla realtà dei fatti: di qui la necessità di una rinegoziazione.

Ma risultati accettabili da tutte le parti esigerebbero un sostanziale smorzamento dei toni.

Questo spiega molto chiaramente l’atteggiamento della attuale Amministrazione americana in rapporto alle costumanze della passata.

Rex Tillerson ed il Country Reports on Human Rights.

Cina. Durissima risposta al report Usa sui ‘diritti umani’.

E spiega anche molto bene l’atteggiamento assunto dal Segretario di Stato:

«Rex Tillerson said he wanted to see facts before criticizing countries such as Saudi Arabia and the Philippines».

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«due treni ad alta velocità che stanno per scontrarsi in cui nessuno è disposto a lasciare la strada all’altro».

Ma è proprio questo che realmente vogliamo? Ragazzi! Ci si dia una calmata.


China Org. 2017-03-08. US Secretary of State to visit China on March 18

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will visit Beijing on March 18 to discuss China-US relations and multilateral issues, the State Department announced on Tuesday.

In his maiden trip to Asia since taking the job as US President Donald Trump’s top diplomat about a month ago, Tillerson will travel to Japan, the Republic of Korea and then China on March 15-19, Mark Toner, acting State Department spokesman, said at a press conference.

“In each country, Secretary Tillerson will meet with senior officials to discuss bilateral and multilateral issues, including strategic coordination to address the advancing nuclear and missile threat from the DPRK, and reaffirm the administration’s commitment to further broaden and enhance US economic and security interests in the Asia-Pacific region,” Toner said.

Tillerson will arrive in Tokyo on March 15, continue to Seoul on March 17, and travel to Beijing on March 18, according to Toner. An earlier report by Japan’s Kyodo news agency said the secretary was expected in Japan on March 17-18 and would meet Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida.

At the news briefing, Toner also talked about Washington’s deployment of the anti-missile defense system THAAD – the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense – in South Korea, saying that the US had told China the anti-missile defense system was not meant to be a threat.

China on Tuesday reiterated its opposition to the deployment after a part of the THAAD battery arrived a day before, which began the process of deployment in the country’s southeast region.

“We will take steps to maintain our security interests,” said Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang, urging parties concerned to stop deployment and refrain from going too far along the wrong track.

A ROK defense ministry official told Xinhua that two mobile launchers and a part of other equipment arrived at Osan Air Base, about 70 kilometers south of the capital Seoul, on Monday night.

Li Haidong, a professor of US studies at China Foreign Affairs University, said the planned deployment of the US Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system in the ROK is a thorn in the side of regional stability.

Tillerson may probably try to explain to China about the “necessity” of deploying THAAD, said Li. “But Beijing will not back out of its opposition to THAAD because it can lead to regional strategic imbalance and poses a grave danger to the country’s security.”

Tillerson’s China visit was announced exactly a week after a two-day visit to Washington by China’s top diplomat, State Councilor Yang Jiechi, on Feb 27-28.

In their meeting at the State Department, Yang, the first senior Chinese official to visit Washington since Trump’s inauguration, invited Tillerson to visit Beijing, and Tillerson expressed interest in doing so in the near future.

On Monday, China’s Foreign Ministry said the country welcomed the prospect of Tillerson’s visit, noting that both countries were in communication over related matters.


Asia News. 2017-03-08. Wang Yi: No al sistema antimissilistico Thaad

Il ministro cinese degli esteri chiede a Pyongyang di fermare il programma nucleare e a Usa e Seoul di cancellare le esercitazioni militari. “Due treni ad alta velocità uno contro l’altro”. Pechino è contraria al Thaad perché teme spionaggio attraverso i radar. Il boicottaggio delle merci coreane. La Chiesa di Corea contro il Thaad perché fa scivolare la penisola in un “centro di una nuova guerra fredda”.

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Pechino (AsiaNews) – Il ministro cinese degli esteri Wang Yi ha ribadito oggi la sua ferma opposizione allo spiegamento del sistema anti-missilistico Thaad in Corea del Sud, dicendo che esso è un errore e che minaccia la sicurezza stessa di Seoul.

In una conferenza stampa al margine dell’Assemblea nazionale del popolo in corso nella capitale cinese, Wang Yi ha precisato che lo spiegamento del sistema è il problema più grosso nei rapporti fra Cina e Corea del Sud.

Proprio ieri il ministero sudcoreano della Difesa e il comando Usa delle Forze in Corea hanno dichiarato di aver portato alcuni lanciamissili e altri elementi del Thaad nella base Usa di Osan, 70 km a sud di Seoul, dando inizio allo spiegamento ufficiale del sistema.

Il Thaad è disegnato per intercettare missili a corto e a medio raggio, in un raggio di 3mila km e per 40-150 km di altitudine.

Una batteria di Thaad (Terminal High Altitude Area Defense) consiste di sei lanciamissili montati su camion, 48 intercettori (otto per ogni rampa), un controllo del fuoco, un’unità di comunicazione e un radar molto potente (AN/TPY-2). Già in passato Pechino ha espresso la sua opposizione perché essa afferma che il radar è così potente da recepire e spiare segnali provenienti dalla Cina. Ma Seoul e Washington hanno sempre ribadito che il sistema è soltanto difensivo e non pone alcuna minaccia agli altri Paesi della regione. Da quando Usa e Corea del Sud hanno deciso di lanciare il Thaad, la Cina ha attuato un boicottaggio delle merci coreane.

Secondo fonti militari coreane, il primo potente radar del Thaad sarà consegnato questo mese e andrà in operazione con aprile.

A proposito della situazione della penisola coreana, Wang ha detto che occorre da una parte che Pyongyang fermi il suo programma nucleare e dall’altra che Washington e Seoul cancellino le loro esercitazioni militari in grande stile come quelle in corso in questi giorni, e che la Corea del Nord interpreta come una preparazione alla invasione del suo territorio. Tre giorni fa Pyongyang ha lanciato quattro missili balistici verso il Mar del Giappone in protesta alle esercitazioni militari in corso.

La situazione della penisola coreana – ha detto Wang – è come “due treni ad alta velocità che stanno per scontrarsi in cui nessuno è disposto a lasciare la strada all’altro”.

Pubblicato in: Geopolitica Asiatica, Geopolitica Mondiale, Senza categoria

Trump telefona a Duterte. Entente Cordiale. Realpolitik.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-12-07.

 asia-sud-est-001

Basterebbe una occhiata superficiale alla carta geografica per comprendere l’importanza strategica delle Filippine.

Questa isola separa il Mare Meridionale della Cina dall’Oceano Pacifico. Il passaggio è obbligato attraverso alcuni stretti molto facilmente controllabili.

Chi dominasse le Filippine dominerebbe sia il Mar Cinese del Sud sia buona parte dell’Oceano Pacifico: non a caso alla fine dell’800 gli americani condussero una sanguinosissima guerra per prenderne possesso. Dominio che restò incontrastato anche dopo che le Filippine si conquistarono la propria indipendenza.

Senza il controllo delle Filippine non sarebbe stata possibile la guerra in Vietnam.

Abbiamo aspettato qualche giorno a dare la notizia della telefonata di Mr Trump a Mr Duterte per osservare meglio le reazioni. La Cina non si è opposta. Per il momento si accontenta di ciò che ha raggiunto.

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Negli ultimi anni la Cina ha aumentato la sua presenza militare nel Mare Meridionale della Cina costruendosi isole artificiali, subito munite di scali portuali ed aeroporti, e munite da un congruo numero di missili terra-aria e terra-mare.

Ne è scaturita una bega colossale.

Essendo isole artificiali dovrebbero appartenere a chi le ha costruite, anche tenendo conto che esse sono state erette in acque internazionali: questa almeno è la versione della Cina. Per tutti gli altri la versione è semplicemente opposta.

Sicuramente da un punto di vista militare le isole sono bersagli fissi, quindi facilmente colpibili, anche se la contraerea potrebbe far pagare scotti severi ad eventuali attaccanti. Per un attaccante, in ogni caso, sono una ben scomoda realtà. In ogni caso, il Mar Cinese del Sud non è più un lago americano.

In conclusione, sembrerebbe lecito asserire che siano opere quanto mai scomode. L’amministrazione Obama se le è viste nascere sotto il naso incapace di qualsiasi reazione politica ovvero militare: ma adesso che ci sono non sarebbe possibile non tenerne conto.

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In questo contesto, sia pur sinteticamente riassunto, si colloca il deterioramento delle relazioni politiche, economiche e militari tra le Filippine e gli Stati Uniti, che non gradiscono per nulla né la forma di governo che i filippini si sono eletti né il netto rifiuto che esse hanno opposto alla loro visione etica e morale, né infine al fatto che il Presidente Duterte abbia lanciato una severissima campagna per il contenimento della diffusione della droga nel suo paese. A questo proposito, Duterte non ha fatto altro che passare il reato di spaccio degli stupefacenti a livello amministrativo: in parole povere, la polizia giustizia tutti gli spacciatori che trova. Invece dei circa diecimila morti annuali per droga ce ne sono quattromila circa di spacciatori, che per ovvi motivi non potranno più spacciare stupefacenti. Fa anche specie che un’Amministrazione dichiaratamente pro-aborto, decine di milioni di assassinii negli ultmi anni, cavilli sulla morte di qualche spacciatore di droga.

L’Amministrazione Obama ha incentrato su questo punto un severo contenzioso con le Filippine, e queste hanno semplicemente iniziato a rivolgersi alla Cina ed alla Russia, per concludere accordi politici, economici e militari.

Un incidente mortale su sei causato dalla marijuana.

Cina. Tolleranza zero con pubblici dipendenti drogati.

Filippine. Abbandonerebbero l’Occidente alleandosi con Russia e Cina.

Philippines’ Duterte wants to ‘open alliances’ with Russia, China

Philippine president threatens to exit UN over drug campaign criticism.

Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte threatens to leave UN.

Philippines war on drugs: ‘1,900 killed’ amid crackdown

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La possibilità concreta che le Filippine cambino schieramento è tutt’altro che remota, anzi. Con tutte le conseguenze geopolitiche facilmente intuibili.

«In five months in office, Duterte has upended Philippine foreign policy by berating the US, making overtures towards historic rival China and pursuing a new alliance with Russia»

Così, gli americani, che non avevamo avuto remora morale alcuna ad appoggiare il regime di Ngo Dinh Diem oppure del generale Pinochet, corrono adesso il serio rischio di perdere le Filippine perché sono omofobe e non tollerano più a lungo la diffusione delle droghe sul loro territorio. Ed anche perché sono stanche di dover sopportare le bizze di Amministrazioni con le idee confuse.

Di questi giorni la notizia che Mr Trump, il presidente eletto, ha telefonato direttamente a Mr Duterte.

«10 minuti di telefonata tra Donald Trump e il presidente delle Filippine Rodrigo Duterte: la conversazione si è conclusa con un invito alla Casa Bianca ».

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«US President-elect Donald Trump has invited Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte to the White House next year during a “very engaging, animated” phone conversation»

*

Un briciolo di Realpolitik sta facendo capolino anche nel cielo di Washington.

Apriti Cielo!

Le sinistre di ogni tipo e razza sono insorte come un sol uomo, condannando il fatto a nome di “tutto l’Occidente“.

Tutto l’Occidente“?

A quanto risulterebbe il partito democratico è stato sonoramente battuto nelle ultime elezioni presidenziali negli Stati Uniti. Né sembrerebbe che i socialisti stiano poi molto meglio in Francia, donde stanno per essere scacciati ed anche in malo modo, né in Germania, ove hanno regolarmente perso larghe fette di elettorato nelle ultime cinque elezioni nei Länder.

Le sinistre al momento assommano a meno di un terzo degli Elettori dell’Occidente, e l’Occidente a meno di un sesto della popolazione del mondo.

E costoro, i perdenti, gli sconfitti, si arrogherebbero il diritto di parlare a nome dell’Occidente?

Fate Voi.

Nota.

Si è perfettamente consci che tutti coloro che vivono lucrando sul traffico illegale di stupefacenti odiano Mr Duterte, che scombina in modo radicale i loro affari. Si comprendono meno facilmente tutti coloro che pur non lucrando alcunché si scandalizzano dell’operato di Mr Duterte: piangono qualche spacciaore morto e non hanno nessuna pietà delle vittime della droga. È in corso una guerra, ed il presidente delle Filippine cerca di tutelare il proprio popolo. Ha finaco la mano leggera.

 


Rai News. 2016-12-03. Trump invita Duterte alla Casa Bianca. Il Presidente filippino insultò Obama: “Figlio di p…”.

Duterte è conosciuto come “Punitore” dei drogati, da quando è presidente la polizia sta facendo una lotta senza quartiere che ha fatto registrare oltre 3 mila vittime, e per aver insultato leader mondiali

*

10 minuti di telefonata tra Donald Trump e il presidente delle Filippine Rodrigo Duterte: la conversazione si è conclusa con un invito alla Casa Bianca. Come di consuetudine, il neo presidente Usa sta chiamando tutti i leader mondiali prima della sua investitura ufficiale prevista il 20 gennaio 2017. A seguire da quella data, Trump potrà iniziare a ricevere ospiti alla White House. L’invito a Duterte, però, ha scatenato forti polemiche, che vanno ad aggiungersi a quelle di Pechino provocate da un’altra telefonata avvenuta tra Trump e il presidente di Taiwan, Tsai Ying-Wen. L’incontro mai avvenuto con Obama Duterte si sarebbe dovuto incontrare con Barack Obama in Laos, ma l’evento fu annullato in seguito alle parole offensive che il presidente filippino pronunciò durante un comizio: “Obama è un figlio di puttana”. Forte dell’investitura popolare, reduce da una campagna elettorale aggressiva, Duterte si è persino paragonato al führer dicendo che sarebbe felice di far uccidere tre milioni di tossicodipendenti proprio come il dittatore naturalizzato tedesco fece con gli ebrei. Oltre a prendere come modello lo sterminio commesso da Adolf Hitler, il presidente delle Filippine ha spesso criticato Europa e Stati Uniti. “Sono degli ipocriti quando criticano la mia campagna anti-droga”, azioni di polizia nella quale sono già morte tremila persone al di fuori di ogni procedura giudiziaria. Duterte, 71 anni, ha vinto le elezioni a maggio dopo essere stato per un ventennio sindaco di Davao. Sta mantenendo le sue promesse: “una lotta spietata al narcotraffico nella quale almeno 100mila persone dovranno morire”. L’ondata di violenza poliziesca con la quale sta cercando di mantenere quanto dichiarato in campagna elettorale ha suscitato lo sdegno del mondo occidentale.

 


Aljazeera. 2016-12-03. Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte ‘gets Donald Trump invite’

Top aide describes seven-minute phone call between the two presidents as “very engaging” and “animated”.

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US President-elect Donald Trump has invited Philippine leader Rodrigo Duterte to the White House next year during a “very engaging, animated” phone conversation, according to a Duterte aide.

Trump’s brief chat with the Duterte comes during a period of uncertainty about one of America’s most important Asian alliances, marked by Duterte’s hostility towards the US and his repeated threats to sever decades-old defence ties.

The call lasted just over seven minutes, Christopher Go, Duterte’s special adviser, announced on Friday.

Trump’s transition team had no immediate comment.

In his five months in office, Duterte has caused a stir by criticising the US, cursing President Barack Obama, making overtures towards China and pursuing a new alliance with Russia.

His diplomacy has created nervousness among some Asian countries, wary about China’s rising influence and America’s staying power as a regional counterbalance.

Duterte has praised China and told Obama to “go to hell” and called him a “son of a bitch” whom he would humiliate if he visited the Philippines.

The anger was unlocked after Obama expressed concern about possible human rights abuses in Duterte’s war on drugs.

Duterte had initially expressed optimism about having Trump in the Oval Office, saying he no longer wanted quarrels. But it has not tempered his rhetoric and he has continued to rail at what he calls US “hypocrisy” and “bullying”.

In an interview with Reuters news agency during the election campaign, Trump said Duterte’s comments showed “a lack of respect for our country”.

‘Trump of the East’

Sometimes referred to as the “Trump of the East” because of his blunt remarks, Duterte has threatened repeatedly to sever US-Philippine defence ties, saying he “hates” having foreign soldiers in his country.

Joint military exercises look set to be scaled back next year, as Duterte demanded, including the number of US troops involved.

A question mark hangs over a defence agreement, which allows US forces access to Philippine bases on a troop rotation basis.

A source who has advised Trump’s transition team on security policy told Reuters news agency last week that Trump would start a “clean slate” with the Philippines.

“He is perfectly capable of talking to Duterte in an open way without being wedded to previous policy failures,” the source said of Trump.

Duterte caused a stir when he visited China in October and announced his “separation” from the US.

He has said the US could not be trusted to support the Philippines if it were attacked, as mandated in a joint defence treaty.

Some experts, however, say Duterte’s appointment of special envoys to Washington suggest that despite his hostility, he intends to keep good ties.

Among those envoys is Jose Antonio, a multi-millionaire real-estate tycoon who bought the rights to name a new office tower in Manila “Trump Towers”.

 


The Guardian. 2016-12-03. Philippines’ deadly drug war praised by Donald Trump, says Rodrigo Duterte

Philippines leader says US president-elect felt drug war which has killed thousands was being fought ‘the right way’

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US President-elect Donald Trump has praised Philippines leader Rodrigo Duterte for his controversial war on drugs in which thousands have died, Duterte said on Saturday following a phone call between the leaders.

The Philippine president called Trump on Friday evening to congratulate him on his victory and Trump wished him “success” in his controversial crackdown, in which 4,800 people have been killed since June, according to Duterte.

“He was quite sensitive also to our worry about drugs. And he wishes me well … in my campaign and he said that … we are doing it as a sovereign nation, the right way,” Duterte said in a statement.

An aide to the Philippines president earlier said Trump invited him to the White House next year during a “very engaging, animated” phone conversation.

The call lasted just over seven minutes, Duterte’s special adviser, Christopher Go, said in a text message to media that gave few details.

A statement from Trump’s team said Duterte congratulated the US president-elect and the two men “noted the long history of friendship and cooperation between the two nations, and agreed that the two governments would continue to work together closely on matters of shared interest and concern”. The statement, however, made no mention of an invitation.

Trump’s brief chat with the firebrand Philippine president follows a period of uncertainty about one of Washington’s most important Asian alliances, stoked by Duterte’s hostility towards President Barack Obama and repeated threats to sever decades-old defence ties.

In five months in office, Duterte has upended Philippine foreign policy by berating the US, making overtures towards historic rival China and pursuing a new alliance with Russia.

His diplomacy has created jitters among Asian countries wary of Beijing’s rising influence and Washington’s staying power as a regional counterbalance.

Duterte has praised China and told Obama to “go to hell” and called him a “son of a bitch” whom he would humiliate if he visited the Philippines.

The anger was unleashed after Obama expressed concern about human rights abuses in Duterte’s war on drugs, in which thousands have died.

Duterte initially expressed optimism about having Trump in the Oval Office, saying he no longer wanted quarrels. But he has continued to rail against US “hypocrisy” and “bullying”.

Trump told Reuters during the election campaign that Duterte’s comments showed “a lack of respect for our country”. But he also stressed the “very important strategic location” of the Philippines and blamed Obama for failing to take the time to get to know world leaders.

A source who has advised Trump’s transition team on security policy told Reuters last week the president-elect would start a “clean slate” with Duterte, and analysts see some similarities in their blunt style.

Duterte caused a stir when he visited China in October and announced his “separation” from the US. He has said Washington could not be trusted to support the Philippines if it were attacked, as mandated in a joint defence treaty.

In an article published just before the US election, Trump advisers Peter Navarro and Alex Gray blamed the breakdown on the Obama administration’s failure to intervene in 2012 when China seized the Scarborough Shoal in the South China Sea, which the Philippines considers its fishing ground.

“Washington’s utter failure to uphold its obligations to a longtime, pivotal ally during one of its most humiliating crises has no doubt contributed to [Duterte’s] low opinion of American security guarantees – and his recent move toward a China alliance,” they wrote.

Some experts say Duterte’s appointment of special envoys to Washington suggest he aims to keep good ties.

Among the envoys is multi-millionaire real estate tycoon Jose Antonio, who bought the rights to name a new office tower in Manila “Trump Towers”.

US State Department spokesman John Kirby said he did not know whether the department had assisted in setting up Trump’s call with Duterte, but stood ready to provide such help.

Philippines expert Ernest Bower of the Bower Group Asia consultancy said it was likely the call was facilitated by Trump’s business partners in the Philippines and a core group of advisers, who include his children.

Bower said Trump’s election victory could offer Duterte a face-saving way to move back from his anti-US rhetoric, while Duterte could provide Trump with a way to stress the importance of Asian alliances, which he appeared to question during the campaign.

Murray Hiebert of the Center for Strategic and International Studies noted that the Philippines would be chairing the 10-member Association of South-east Asian Nations (Asean) next year and it was common for the US to extend an invitation to the chair before the US-Asean summit.

Bower said this may have been fortuitous on Trump’s part.

“My guess is he was more interested in making a point – that he could deal with Duterte in ways Obama couldn’t – than in the strategic wisdom of driving alignment with the Asean chair ahead of the Asean and East Asian summits.”

 


The New York Times. 2016-12-03. Rodrigo Duterte Says Donald Trump Endorses His Violent Antidrug Campaign

MANILA — President Rodrigo Duterte of the Philippines said on Saturday that President-elect Donald J. Trump had endorsed his brutal antidrug campaign, telling Mr. Duterte that the Philippines was conducting it “the right way.”

Mr. Duterte, who spoke with Mr. Trump by telephone on Friday, said Mr. Trump was “quite sensitive” to “our worry about drugs.”

“He wishes me well, too, in my campaign, and he said that, well, we are doing it as a sovereign nation, the right way,” Mr. Duterte said.

There was no immediate response from Mr. Trump to Mr. Duterte’s description of the phone call, and his transition team could not be reached for comment.

Since his election last month, Mr. Trump has held a series of unscripted calls with foreign leaders, several of which have broken radically from past American policies and diplomatic practice. A call on Friday with the president of Taiwan, Tsai Ing-wen, appeared to be out of sync with four decades of United States policy toward China and prompted a Chinese call to the White House.

Mr. Duterte has led a campaign against drug abuse in which he has encouraged the police and others to kill people they suspect of using or selling drugs. Since he took office in June, more than 2,000 people have been killed by the police in what officers describe as drug raids, and the police say several hundred more have been killed by vigilantes.

The program has been condemned by the United States, the United Nations, the European Union and others for what rights organizations have characterized as extrajudicial killings. In rejecting such criticism from the United States this fall, Mr. Duterte called Mr. Obama a “son of a whore.”

In a summary of the phone call with Mr. Trump released by Mr. Duterte’s office on Saturday morning, Mr. Duterte said the two had spoken for just a few minutes but covered many topics, including the antidrug campaign.

“I could sense a good rapport, an animated President-elect Trump,” Mr. Duterte said. “And he was wishing me success in my campaign against the drug problem.”

Mr. Duterte added: “He understood the way we are handling it, and I said that there’s nothing wrong in protecting a country. It was a bit very encouraging in the sense that I supposed that what he really wanted to say was that we would be the last to interfere in the affairs of your own country.”

Mr. Duterte, who has said he was seeking “a separation” from the United States, a longtime ally, and has threatened to bar American troops from his country, also said, “We assured him of our ties with America.” He did not elaborate on that comment.

Mr. Duterte also said that Mr. Trump had invited him to visit New York and Washington, and that Mr. Trump said he wanted to attend the summit meeting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations next year in the Philippines.

Mr. Duterte has often been compared to Mr. Trump for his blunt speech and populist positions.

“I appreciate the response that I got from President-elect Trump, and I would like to wish him success,” Mr. Duterte said. “He will be a good president for the United States of America.”

Pubblicato in: Geopolitica Asiatica, Logistica

Cina – Pakistan. Inaugurata la strada Gwadar – Kashgar.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-11-19.

 2016-11-15__pakistan_cina_002

 

The Western Alignment of CPEC is depicted by the red line. The 1,153 kilometer route will link the Brahma Bahtar Interchange of the M1 Motorway with the city of Gwadar in Balochistan province. The portion depicted by the orange line between Basima and Shahdadkot is sometimes regarded as part of the Western Alignment.


–  Cina. Una diplomazia alla conquista del mondo. 2016-11-08

–  Cina. È diventata il maggiore investitore nell’Europa dell’est. 2016-11-06

–  Cina. Consolida il suo impero in Africa. 2016-11-05

–  Cina. Fabbrica un nuovo miliardario ogni settimana. 2016-10-15

–  Cina e Myanmar. Un possibile sbocco sull’Oceano Indiano. 2016-09-21

–  China Development Bank ed accordo strategico Cina – Venezuela. 2016-08-12

–  Cina. La diplomazia ferroviaria. 2016-05-20

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La politica cinese di costruire infrastrutture senza imporre clausole inaccettabili sta dando frutti sempre più visibili: la chiamano la “politica ferroviaria“.

L’accento dovrebbe essere posto sui termini “senza imporre clausole inaccettabili“.

«The $46 billion project is an extension of China’s “One Belt, One Road”»

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«China’s popularity …. is strong. Its policy of not linking aid and investments to human rights and good governance has made Beijing many friends on the continent, beyond its authoritarian governments».

Adesso si è procurata un altro collegamento ad alta velocità con l’Oceano Indiano, che si associa a quello con il Myanmar ed a quello con la Malacca.

L’aumentata velocità di trasporto e la sua riduzione di costo permetteranno di ammortizzare le spese sostenuto in meno di dieci anni.

È una visione politica di pacifica conquista economica del mondo. Una visione imperiale


Saudi Gazette. 2016-11-15.  Pakistan, China launch new trade route

GWADAR, Pakistan — Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Sunday inaugurated a trade route linking southwestern Gwadar port to the Chinese city of Kashgar as part of a joint multibillion-dollar project to jumpstart economic growth in the South Asian country.

The Cosco Wellington, a ship berthed at the deep-sea port in Baluchistan province, was loaded with over 150 containers — the first consignment under the China-Pakistan Economic Corridor announced in 2014, which aims to link the Asian superpower’s Xinjiang region with the Arabian Sea.

The $46 billion project is an extension of China’s “One Belt, One Road” initiative and encompasses a series of infrastructure, power and transport upgrades that Islamabad hopes will kick-start its long-underperforming economy.

“The participants of the pilot convoy who have made it to Gwadar are the harbingers of development and progress, that this region is to see soon,” Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif told audience members at a ceremony that was also attended by powerful army chief Raheel Sharif and senior Chinese officials.

“Their faces gleam with the beam of prosperity that CPEC will bring about in the years to come,” he said, calling the first shipment a “watershed event.”

Pakistan recorded a 4.7 percent growth in gross domestic product (GDP) for the fiscal year that ended in June 2016, and Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has set an ambitious target of 5.7 percent for the current year.

With its dusty moonscape and shining new port, officials have repeatedly suggested the city of Gwadar is another Dubai in the making.

But the mineral-rich province in which it is located is beset by violence from militant groups as well as insurgents seeking a greater share of the region’s natural resources and secession from Pakistan.

Security problems have mired CPEC in the past with numerous attacks by separatists, but China has said it is confident the Pakistani military is in control.

 

Pubblicato in: Geopolitica Asiatica, Unione Europea

Lesbo. Migranti pakistani e bengalesi incendiano il campo Moria.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-10-24.

 2016-10-24__lesbo__001

Il campo di Moria è stato bruciato diverse volte nel corso degli ultimi mesi.

Una cosa però sembrerebbe essere certa.

Non ci si venga a dire che pakistani e bengalesi stiano fuggendo da guerre o persecuzioni in atto.

Non solo.

Il Pakistan si è anche dotato da tempo di armamento atomico e sviluppa vettori: cosa c’entra l’Unione Europea se quella gente preferisce spendere i propri soldi in armamenti invece che per infrastrutture produttive?

Cosa vogliono da noi: il caffè a letto?

 


La Stampa. 2016-10-24. Lesbo, migranti assaltano e danno fuoco a una struttura per la gestione delle richieste d’asilo

Decine di migranti hanno attaccato e dato fuoco a una struttura dell’Unione europea che gestisce le domande di asilo sull’isola greca di Lesbo. La rabbia è esplosa durante una protesta per i ritardi con cui vengono gestite le domande di asilo. La polizia ha riportato che circa 70 persone, in maggioranza pakistani e bengalesi, hanno prima lanciato pietre e poi hanno appiccato il fuoco a parte della struttura del campo Moria.  

Nessuno è rimasto ferito ma tre prefabbricati sono seriamente danneggiati. Ventidue migranti sono stati arrestati. 

 

Pubblicato in: Geopolitica Asiatica, Geopolitica Militare, Religioni

Duterte arrivato in visita a Pechino. Bud Bagsak non è stata dimenticata.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-10-20.

 2016-10-20__duterte__001

 «China’s President Xi Jinping has welcomed his Filipino counterpart Rodrigo Duterte on a visit to Beijing which he described as a “milestone”.»

Le Filippine da oltre un secolo sono nell’orbita politica e militare americana.

asia-sud-est-002

La loro importanza strategica è evidente. Costituiscono gran parte della corolla est di isole che chiudono il Mar Cinese del Sud dall’Oceano Pacifico. Non solo. Sono filippine anche le Isole Babyyan, che sembrerebbero essere state messe apposta in fila indiana per collegare le Filippine con Taiwan, dente cariato con pulpite purulenta della Cina. L’isolotto di Itbayat, dotato di sorgenti di acqua dolce, dista soltanto 170 kilometri da Taiwan. Se su tale isola fossero collocati missili terra-terra, Taiwan sarebbe vulnerabile da parte di missili di bassa gittata.

Non solo.

Lo Stretto di Luzon è alquanto ampio e ben si presta all’ingresso di flotte di navi da guerra dal Pacifico al Mar Cinese del Sud. Ma sotto la condizione che le Filippine siano schierate militarmente dalla parte di chi volesse oltrepassare lo stretto da est ad ovest.

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Nel 1896 i filippini si rivoltarono contro la dominazione spagnola, ma la loro indipendenza fu effimera. Cacciati gli spagnoli, subentrarono immediatamente gli americani, legalizzando la situazione con il Trattato di Parigi del 1898, in cui le potenze di allora ratificarono il dato di fatto. La rivolta dei filippini proseguì per anni in una guerra sanguinosa contro gli americani che li avevano invasi, guerra terminata con la battaglia di Bud Bagsak del 15 giugno 1913.

«La guerra e l’occupazione militare delle Filippine trovò opposizioni anche negli stessi Stati Uniti, ispirando la formazione della cosiddetta “Lega anti-imperialista americana” il 15 giugno 1898. La guerra e l’occupazione provocarono vaste distruzioni e cambiarono l’entroterra culturale dell’arcipelago, con un numero di vittime stimato tra i 34.000 e un 1.000.000 tra i civili, la secolarizzazione delle istituzioni della Chiesa cattolica nelle Filippine, e l’introduzione della lingua inglese come linguaggio primario nell’istruzione, nel governo e nei commerci.

Con il “Philippine Organic Act” del 1902 ai filippini fu dato un autogoverno molto limitato.» [Fonte]

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Chi avesse mai sperato che i filippini si fossero dimenticati la Rivoluzione Filippina avrebbe sbagliato grossolanamente. Chi avesse mai sperato che si fossero dimenticati dei loro morti si sarebbe sbagliato. Chi avesse mai sperato che si fossero dimenticati della loro religione si sarebbe sbagliato.

Se ne sono ricordati, eccome!

Ed alla prima concreta possibilità ne hanno tratto le conseguenze.

E chi mai avrebbe detto che il retaggio religioso, storico, culturale e sociale di una nazione potrebbe essere cancellato con un editto?

Solo un americano avrebbe potuto bersi questa storiella. Americano che adesso demonizza Duterte: lo maledice perché lo ha abbandonato, mandandolo anche “al diavolo”.


Bbc. 2016-10-20. Duterte in China: Xi lauds ‘milestone’ Duterte visit

China’s President Xi Jinping has welcomed his Filipino counterpart Rodrigo Duterte on a visit to Beijing which he described as a “milestone”.

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Mr Duterte arrived on Tuesday for a four-day trip expected to boost trade and mend ties between the nations.

Both sides were ready to move on from a bitter row over islands in the South China Sea, a top Chinese official said.

The visit also shows Mr Duterte’s efforts to engage China as he moves away from the US, a long-time ally.

He has twice announced a “separation” of the countries, but a US official said no official request had been made to change their relationship.

Meanwhile, nearly 50 police officers who were involved in clashes with pro-China protesters outside the US embassy in Manila on Wednesday have been suspended. During the demonstration, a police van which came under attack drove into the crowd, knocking people down.

The dispute over the South China Seas did not take centre stage in Mr Duterte’s discussions with Chinese officials.

Duterte in China: Conciliator-in-chief?

Duterte: The ‘strongman’ of the Philippines

Saying the unsayable: Duterte in quotes

Why is the South China Sea contentious?

“Both sides agreed that this issue is not the sum total of bilateral relations,” Chinese Vice Foreign Minister Liu Zhenmin told reporters after the meeting.

The two countries had agreed to seek “settlement through bilateral dialogue”, he said.

Mr Duterte and President Xi presided over the signing of documents covering several trade deals as well as co-operation in cultural, tourism, anti-narcotics and maritime affairs.

The Philippine Department of Trade and Industry Secretary Ramon Lopez said on Thursday that the deals to be signed during the week would amount to $13.5bn.

The relationship between China and the Philippines had worsened in recent years as both claim the Spratly Islands and Scarborough Shoal in the South China Sea.

The dispute reached a peak in July when an international tribunal sided with Manila and rejected Beijing’s claims.

Although he maintained a blustery position towards Beijing during his presidential campaign, Mr Duterte sounded a note of reconciliation shortly after taking power.

At the same time, Mr Duterte has said he would end joint military exercises with the US, admonished the US for criticising him over his bloody war against drugs that has been linked with thousands of extrajudicial killings, and said US President Barack Obama could “go to hell”.

On Wednesday, Mr Duterte told a cheering crowd in Beijing: “I will not go to America any more. We will just be insulted there. So, time to say goodbye my friend.”

On Thursday he repeated his pledge, telling Chinese and Philippine businesspeople: “I announce my separation from the United States. Both in military, not maybe social, but economics also. America has lost.”

“I’ve realigned myself in your ideological flow and maybe I will also go to Russia to talk to [President Vladimir] Putin and tell him that there are three of us against the world – China, Philippines, and Russia. It’s the only way,” Mr Duterte said.

But an unnamed US official told the AFP news agency that the US had “not received any requests through official channels to alter our assistance to or co-operation with the Philippines”.

The president of the Philippines also used his speech to mock American accents, saying the American “larynx is not greatly adjusted to civility” – captured in a video shot by a journalist from the Philippines in China on Thursday.

The BBC’s John Sudworth in Beijing said Mr Duterte appeared to have calculated that taking a less confrontational approach than his predecessor on the South China Sea dispute would help him secure aid from China.

For his part, Mr Xi welcomed the renewed friendship with the Philippines.

“I hope we can follow the wishes of the people and use this visit as an opportunity to push China-Philippines relations back on a friendly footing and fully improve things,” he said.

What does Duterte want from China?

China is the Philippines’ second-largest trading partner, with the latter supplying mostly electronic products but looking to diversify with more food exports for instance. Earlier this year, angry Chinese netizens called for a boycott of Filipino mangoes amid tensions over South China Sea claims.

The tensions also prompted Beijing to issue a travel advisory against the Philippines in 2014. Since then Chinese holidaymakers have flocked to elsewhere in south-east Asia; the hope is that they come back when Beijing lifts the advisory, which it has promised to do.

In a pre-visit interview with Chinese cable station Phoenix TV , Mr Duterte complained of inadequate military support from the US and said he planned to buy Chinese weapons and boats as part of a military equipment overhaul. “If China does not help us in this endeavour, we will find it hard,” he said.

Mr Duterte’s controversial war on drugs has attracted accusations of human rights violations by the West including the United States. But Beijing – no stranger to such criticism – has kept quiet, and has even pledged to support Mr Duterte.

Pubblicato in: Devoluzione socialismo, Geopolitica Asiatica

Deterrenza delle pene. Vietnam e Filippine.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-10-09.

 vietnam-001

Il tema trattato da questo post è difficile: si presta in modo consistente alla retorica ed al falso moralismo, elemento che ci è del tutto alieno.


Da tempo una cultura di sinistra ha instillato nelle menti che le pene avrebbero scarsa o nulla deterrenza sull’incidenza dei delitti.

Questo modo di vedere è del tutto occidentale, ossia di un solo sesto della popolazione mondiale, è contraddetto dalle evidenze fattuali della storia e da quelle odierne.

Nelle Filippine del Presidente Duterte lo spaccio di stupefacenti è reato punibile direttamente in via amministrativa con la pena di morte. Ad oggi duemilacinquecento spacciatori non spacceranno più, impedendo la morte la recidiva, e non si trova quasi più uno spacciatore in giro. Si tenga presente che le morti legate alla droga superavano le 15,000 all’anno. Metodo adeguato alla portata del vulnus che la droga infligge alla Collettività.

Similmente, anche in Vietnam:

«Trafficking of more than 100 grams (3.5 oz) of heroin is punishable by death or life imprisonment».

Di questi giorni:

«A court in Vietnam sentenced to death a notorious drugs kingpin and eight associates on Wednesday»

*

Il problema della droga sarebbe facilmente risolvibile: basterebbe volerlo. Il fatto è che non lo si vuole risolvere. La droga infligge alle Collettività scotti elevati, sia in termini di vite umane, sia in termini di debosciamento della popolazione, specie quella giovane. Il drogato è deprivato della volontarietà e sottominato moralmente. E questo danno è di tale portata che giustifica anche azioni eterodosse: è una guerra, e come tale dovrebbe essere combattuta.

Né ci si venga a raccontare che la severità della pena non sia deterrente: in tutte le Filippine non si trova più un pusher a pagarlo a peso d’oro.

È del tutto sequenziale che qui in Occidente tutti coloro che in una qualche maniera siano coinvolti negli affari legati alla droga si indignino veementemente.

Ma anche in Occidente i tempi stanno mutando rapidamente.


Reuters. 2016-09-29. Vietnam drug kingpin, 8 henchmen get death sentence for heroin smuggling

A court in Vietnam sentenced to death a notorious drugs kingpin and eight associates on Wednesday, delivering the maximum punishment in a single verdict over the trafficking of more than half a tonne of heroin.

The case centered on Trang A Tang, a 33-year-old leader of a network that trafficked drugs from the infamous Golden Triangle area of northwestern Laos, northeastern Myanmar and northern Thailand, and distributed them in Vietnam.

Tang has become well-known for his opulent lifestyle and for managing to evade justice while spending lavishly on big houses and luxury cars.

The four-day trial in Bac Ninh province heard how the gang had handled 2,181 heroin “cakes”, weighing 350 grams (0.77 lb) each, between 2009 and 2013. That works out to 763 kg (1,682 lb) of heroin.

Ton Trong Hung, secretary of the court, said by telephone that nine members of the network had received the death penalty. Tang’s wife and father were among three others jailed for life.

The judge called Tang “extremely dangerous” and said he “must be permanently removed from society”, state-run radio Voice of Vietnam reported on its website.

Trafficking of more than 100 grams (3.5 oz) of heroin is punishable by death or life imprisonment in Vietnam.

Vietnam in 2014 condemned 30 people to death and jailed 69 others for trafficking more than 12 tonnes of heroin in a what was the communist country’s largest-ever drugs trial, so big that it had to be held outdoors.

Pubblicato in: Geopolitica Asiatica, Geopolitica Militare

La Cina starebbe sviluppando missili con intelligenza artificiale

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-10-05.

 cinaa_esercito_terracotta_04__

«Yet none has been developing naval missile systems with artificial intelligence»

*

«To be sure, Artificial Intelligence is considered indispensable in the development of new-age naval weapons, in particular hypersonic missiles. After China’s recent high-speed (over Mach 10), “extreme maneuvers” hypersonic tests, it is amply clear that future combat missions will require a human-machine interface on an unprecedented scale; which is why four other Asian states — Japan, India, South Korea, and Taiwan — have been developing supersonic and hypersonic systems. Each one of them has expressed an aspiration for a sophisticated maritime force, with long range sensors, armor protection, precision weapons, and networking technologies.»

*

«In practice, however, Artificial Intelligence is a term used for a combat system that has the ability to take targeting decisions. This is more in the nature of “who to target,” as opposed to “how to target,” which is anyway a task that guided missiles have been performing with some precision. It’s worth emphasizing that maritime forces remain skeptical of autonomous weapon systems with independent targeting capability. In the nautical realm, the launch of a missile on an enemy platform is an act of war. The decision to execute a missile launch is the exclusive preserve of the command team (led by the ship’s captain), which must independently assess the threat and act in pursuit of war objectives.»

* * * * * * * *

Qualsiasi applicazione militare deve rispondere al concetto di eseguire in modo perfetto i piani stabiliti, essendo altamente affidabile. Ma i piani stabiliti non sono un obbligo assoluto: nella loro fase attuativa devono tener conto del contesto attuale e delle reazioni avversarie.

Molto meglio un sistema d’arma attempato ma sicuro rispetto ad uno innovativo ma insicuro. Meglio un sistema d’arma duttile, rispetto ad uno rigido.

Infine, tutte le decisioni, per quanto possano essere state pianificate e previste, sono solitamente stravolte quando ci si trova di fronte al quadro determinato dalle azioni avversarie, che sono impredicibili.

In ultima analisi, l’intelligenza artificiale aiuta, ed in modo potente, a prendere la decisione corretta in tempi rapidissimi: ma questa decisione è “corretta” nei limiti nei quali è “corretto” il corpo delle regole che sono applicate. E non è assolutamente detto che tale corpo sia valido anche nell’affrontare situazioni nuove, che potrebbero essere governate da leggi totalmente differenti da quelle previste.

Questo è il maggior limite non solo dell’intelligenza artificiale, ma anche di un esercito che segua troppo strettamente le direttive ricevute. Bene quindi il suo utilizzo, ma pur sempre con giudizio e buon senso.

Nota.

La Cina non è l’unica nazione a lavorare in questo settore.


The Diplomat. 2016-09-25. Is China Really Building Missiles With Artificial Intelligence?

There are real limits on the amount of AI acceptable to navy commanders.

*

With rising security challenges in the global commons, there is growing interest in the subject of “intelligent” weapons systems. This is especially so in the maritime realm, where recent studies have shown that precision-guided weaponry and networked systems are likely to play an increasingly important role. Even while accepting autonomous systems as the future of maritime warfare, however, many find the subject of “intelligent weapon systems” to be deeply contentious.

A good point of departure for the discussion on autonomous combat systems is a recent report in the Chinese media about the development of a family of cruise missiles with artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities. In August this year, a Chinese daily reported that China’s aerospace industry was developing tactical missiles with inbuilt intelligence that would help seek out targets in combat. The “plug and play” approach, a Chinese aerospace executive pointed out, could potentially enable China’s military commanders to launch missiles tailor made for specific combat conditions.

Oddly enough, no clarifications were offered for what “tailor made cruise missiles with high levels of artificial intelligence and automation” really meant. Apart from reiterating China’s global leadership status in the field of artificial intelligence, the Chinese source did not provide any insight into the specific nature of autonomous capability being developed.

The issue for many naval commanders is the dichotomy between the theoretical definition of Artificial Intelligence and its popular interpretation. Technically, AI is any onboard intelligence that allows machines in combat to execute regular tasks, allowing humans more time to focus on demanding and complex missions. Modern-day combat requires war-fighters to operate with the active assistance from sensors and systems. In theory, AI provides the technology to augment human analysis and decision-making by capturing knowledge that can be re-applied in critical situations. It purports to change the human role from “in-the-loop” controller to “on-the-loop” thinker who can focus on a more reflective assessment of problems and strategies, guiding rather than being buried in execution detail.

In practice, however, Artificial Intelligence is a term used for a combat system that has the ability to take targeting decisions. This is more in the nature of “who to target,” as opposed to “how to target,” which is anyway a task that guided missiles have been performing with some precision. It’s worth emphasizing that maritime forces remain skeptical of autonomous weapon systems with independent targeting capability. In the nautical realm, the launch of a missile on an enemy platform is an act of war. The decision to execute a missile launch is the exclusive preserve of the command team (led by the ship’s captain), which must independently assess the threat and act in pursuit of war objectives.

Despite several advancements allowing for a more precise targeting of platforms, the logic of maritime operations hasn’t fundamentally changed. As a result, naval missiles haven’t been invested with any serious intelligence to make command decisions to target enemy units. While their ability to strike targets has been radically enhanced — through the use of superior onboard gyros, computing systems, and track radars — the basic mode of operation of cruise missiles remains the same.

To be sure, Artificial Intelligence is considered indispensable in the development of new-age naval weapons, in particular hypersonic missiles. After China’s recent high-speed (over Mach 10), “extreme maneuvers” hypersonic tests, it is amply clear that future combat missions will require a human-machine interface on an unprecedented scale; which is why four other Asian states — Japan, India, South Korea, and Taiwan — have been developing supersonic and hypersonic systems. Each one of them has expressed an aspiration for a sophisticated maritime force, with long range sensors, armor protection, precision weapons, and networking technologies. Yet none has been developing naval missile systems with artificial intelligence.

A useful illustration of the predicament that AI poses for the naval community is the U.S. Navy’s Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM). Often portrayed by senior officers as a single-shot remedy for America’s surface-combat deficit at sea, the LRASM is a replacement for the Harpoon missile (albeit a more powerful version) and a supposedly “intelligent” missile system. Guided first by ship-borne equipment and then by satellite, the projectile is jam-resistant and capable of operations without the Global Positioning System. Flying through a series of way-points, evading static threats, land features, and commercial shipping, the LRASM has the capability to detect threats independently, and navigate around them.

The nature of the LRASM’s “intelligence,” however, tells a story. The missile is smart enough to avoid the engagement zone of an enemy ship that is not on the target list. To bypass enemy warships that aren’t on the target list, it skips way-points that lie within their weapons-engagement range. With an inbuilt capability to dive to sea-skimming altitude in its approach to the target vessel, the missile can strike at an independently calculated “mean point of impact.”

Notwithstanding its considerable computing and processing capabilities, however, the LRASM does not select its target in flight. Human operators feed that information into the missile, providing it with a continuous stream of data. In crime-investigation lingo, the missile is not the mastermind of the encounter; only the assassin. This also demonstrates of the limits of artificial intelligence, where the missile makes its own decisions only after it receives critical targeting information from the command team. Despite its coordinated attack capabilities, the LRASM cannot be termed as a fully autonomous weapon.

Understandably, the debate surrounding artificial intelligence and autonomous naval platforms is a contentious one. AI might have the potential to radicalize naval operations at sea, but many maritime practitioners are uncomfortable with its use in combat – particularly the development of lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS). The ethical dilemma arises from the LAWS’ ability to kill people, and policymakers’ reservations about inanimate systems that can take decisions to terminate lives.

It is instructive that while the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) has, in recent years, developed programs that envisages the use of LAWS, these apply only to Collaborative Operations in Denied Environment (CODE) — where autonomous aerial vehicles must only target enemy platforms in situations where signal-jamming makes communication between human commanders impossible.

Here too, there is a debate about its humanitarian implications, because international humanitarian law — which governs attacks on humans in times of war — has no specific provisions for such autonomy. The 1949 Geneva Convention on humane conduct in war requires any attack to satisfy three criteria: military necessity; discrimination between combatants and non-combatants; and proportionality between the value of the military objective and the potential for collateral damage. Evidently, these are subjective judgments no current AI system seems able to fully to satisfy.

In the absence of consensus around “artificially intelligent” weapons, autonomous naval combat systems are yet to find ready acceptance in the military. Navy officials aren’t against the use of AI technologies to hasten command and control processes and human decision-making on naval platforms, but it is unlikely they will easily acquiesce to weapon systems taking independent targeting decisions.

Abhijit Singh is a Senior Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation at New Delhi. His recent report on Unmanned and Autonomous Vehicles and Future Maritime Operations in Littoral Asia elaborates on issues covered in this piece.

 

Pubblicato in: Geopolitica Asiatica

Filippine. Abbandonerebbero l’Occidente alleandosi con Russia e Cina.

Giuseppe Sandro Mela.

2016-09-29.

 asia-sud-est-002

 

La storia è colma di alleanze ribaltate.

Nel 1914 l’Italia abbandonò l’alleanza con Austria e Germania e transitò a quella con Francia e Regno Unito.

Nel 1943 l’Italia abbandonò l’alleanza con la Germania ed il Giappone e si ‘alleò’ con gli angloamericani.

Nulla quindi di strano che le Filippine stiano meditando di uscire dalla sfera di influenza occidentale per transitare in quella sino – russa. Di certo, in tale evenienza, salterebbero tutti gli attuali equilibri strategici nel sud – est asiatico e nell’Oceano Pacifico. Nulla poi vieterebbe di pensare che i cinesi non costruiscano isole artificiali anche nell’Oceano Pacifico.

Né sembrerebbe improbabile che la Cina abbia operato nelle prossimità delle Filippine senza averle prima consultate.

La Cina costruisce isole artificiali anche alle Scarborough Shoal.

*

«Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Monday he would visit Russia and China this year to chart an independent foreign policy and “open alliances” with two powers with historic rivalries with the United States»

*

«Duterte said the Philippines was at the “point of no return” in relations with former colonial ruler the United States, so he wanted to strengthen ties with others, and picked two global powers that have been sparring with Washington on the international political stage»

* * * * * * *

«President Duterte has said his country could quit the United Nations over criticism of his war on drugs. The UN previously called for an end to extrajudicial killings, saying “state actors” could be held responsible.»

*

«I do not want to insult you, but maybe we’ll just have to decide to separate from the United Nations»

*

«In due mesi di ‘lotta alla droga’ lanciata da Duterte, la polizia filippina ha ucciso oltre 2000 sospetti spacciatori o trafficanti di droga, secondo un documento del governo di Manila»

* * * * * * *

Mr Duterte non sembrerebbe essere una persona che si faccia troppi scrupoli.

È opinabile ed opinato. Taluni affermerebbero che sia un malavitoso e, forse, questo giudizio potrebbe anche avere un nucleo di verità.

Di certo la situazione delle Filippine è molto delicata e le diplomazie occidentali hanno stentato, e stentano tuttora, a comprenderne appieno le problematiche.

Per obiettività però, le situazioni dovrebbero essere valutate sempre dai diversi punti di vista. Accenneremo solo ad un settore di situazione interna, che in Occidente è molto dibattuto, ma più su scala ideologica che reale.

La lotta alla droga è una vera e propria guerra. Lo spaccio di droga deboscia una nazione, specialmente la sua componente giovane, ed alla fine la uccide.

È un affare molto lucroso, che sostiene la grande criminalità organizzata.

Pensare di combattere una guerra con tanto di morti ammazzati con metodi da pudibonde orsoline è semplicemente imbecille se detto in buona fede, maliziosamente criminale ed abbietto se detto con cognizione di causa.

In fondo, Mr Duerete non ha fatto altro che passare lo spaccio di droga da una competenza giuridica ad una amministrativa.

E gli spacciatori morti non spacciano più.

Né si venga a dire che la pena non è deterrente.

Questo è soltanto il diritto alla legittima difesa di una Collettività.

Certo, tutti coloro che guadagnano dallo spaccio se ne lamentano ad altissima voce, invocando quella giustiia che loro calpestando quotidianamente.


Reuters. 2016-09-26. Philippines’ Duterte wants to ‘open alliances’ with Russia, China

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte said on Monday he would visit Russia and China this year to chart an independent foreign policy and “open alliances” with two powers with historic rivalries with the United States.

Duterte said the Philippines was at the “point of no return” in relations with former colonial ruler the United States, so he wanted to strengthen ties with others, and picked two global powers that have been sparring with Washington on the international political stage.

Last week, he last declared he would visit China, with which ties remain frosty over a South China Sea arbitration ruling won by the Philippines in July. He said Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev was expecting him in Moscow.

China claims most of the South China Sea, through which more than $5 trillion of trade moves annually. Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam have rival claims.

An arbitration court in The Hague in July invalidated China’s claims to the waterway in a case brought by the Philippines, a ruling Beijing refuses to recognize.

“I am ready to not really break (U.S.) ties but we will open alliances with China and… Medvedev,” Duterte told reporters, adding he would open up the “other side of the ideological barrier”.

He welcomed investment and shrugged off rating agency Standard and Poor’s concerns last week about the Philippine economy on his watch.

“Never mind about the ratings,” he said. “I will open up the Philippines for them to do business, alliances of trade and commerce.”

The peso fell on Monday to its lowest since 2009, and foreign investors have dumped local shares for six straight weeks, worried about Duterte’s anti-U.S. rhetoric and brutal war on drugs, which has alarmed rights groups at home and abroad.

In Washington, State Department spokesman Mark Toner said the Philippine government had not contacted the United States about the comments made by Duterte.

U.S. cooperation with the Philippine government remains strong and the United States has not seen anything that would indicate a shift by Manila, Toner said at a daily news briefing.

“They’re a sovereign nation and we’re certainly not going to hold them back from pursuing closer relations with either of those countries. … It’s not a zero-sum game,” he said.

Duterte also said he would open up telecoms and airlines, two domestic sectors long controlled by local players and criticized for being uncompetitive. He did not elaborate.

His vitriol against the United States has become a near-daily occurrence, sparking both amusement and concern. On Monday he accused Washington of “hypocrisy” and “lording it over us”.

His latest swipe included ruling out participation in any maritime conflict initiated by the United States, despite a 1951 treaty which Duterte said required Manila to back Washington.

“I am about to cross the Rubicon between me and the U.S.,” he said,” without elaborating. “It’s the point of no return.”

Toner said he would dispute Duterte’s premise that the United States might start a maritime conflict. “The United states has a strong security presence in the Asia-Pacific region, but we’re certainly not looking to start a military action against anyone,” he said.

It was unclear whether Duterte’s outbursts will affect relations between the two countries, whose militaries have scheduled joint exercises in October.

On Monday, the U.S. embassy in Manila announced two-week deployment of a pair of C130 planes and 100 troops at an air base in the central Philippines, the third of its kind this year, as part of a rotational troops agreement.

Separately, Duterte said the United Nations, European Union and United States would get a free hand to investigate killings in his anti-narcotics campaign, but only under Philippine laws.

Deaths in the campaign have averaged more than 40 a day since Duterte took office on June 30.


Deutsche Welle. 2016-08-20. Philippine president threatens to exit UN over drug campaign criticism.

President Duterte has said his country could quit the United Nations over criticism of his war on drugs. The UN previously called for an end to extrajudicial killings, saying “state actors” could be held responsible.

*

In a profanity-laden press conference in the early hours of Sunday morning, the Philippine president threatened to quit the United Nations over comments made by the agency.

Two UN human rights experts released a statement last week calling for the Philippine government “to put an end to the current wave of extrajudicial executions and killings” in Duterte’s campaign against drugs.

“I do not want to insult you, but maybe we’ll just have to decide to separate from the United Nations,” Rodrigo Duterte said during a press conference in the city of Davao.

Asked about the possible consequences of his comments, he said: “I don’t give a shit about them. They are the ones interfering.”

The president said the UN had done nothing for the Philippines – without mentioning the international body’s poverty reduction programs and natural disaster relief efforts following typhoons.

“You do not just go out and give a shitting statement against a country,” Duterte said.

Firing back at UN, US

Duterte pointed to the persistence of hunger and terrorism as examples of UN failures.

“You now, United Nations, if you can say one bad thing about me, I can give you 10 (about you),” he said. “Because if you are really true to your mandate, you could have stopped all these wars and killing.”

The president also called out police shootings of African Americans in the United States and asked why the nation – a traditional ally of the Philippines – hadn’t done anything to stop the situation in Syria and Iraq.

“Anybody in that stupid body complaining about the stench there of death?” he asked.

Deadly war on drugs

The UN’s special rapporteur on summary executions, Agnes Callamard, implied that officials in the Philippines could be held responsible for extrajudicial killings of suspected drug dealers and drug addicts.

Duterte previously called for people in Phillipine slums to kill neighbors who were suspected of being drug addicts – a line which his aides said was never intended to be taken literally.


Bbc. 2016-08-20. Philippines’ Rodrigo Duterte threatens to leave UN.

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has threatened to “separate” from the UN after it criticised his war on drugs as a crime under international law.

*

Mr Duterte said he might ask China and African nations to form another body. He also accused the UN of failing on terrorism, hunger and ending conflicts.

Mr Duterte, elected in May, has sanctioned the killing of traffickers to try to wipe out the drugs trade.

The UN has repeatedly condemned the drive as a violation of human rights.

Some 900 suspected drug traffickers have been killed since Mr Duterte was elected on 9 May.

Last week, two UN human rights experts said Mr Duterte’s directive for police and the public to kill suspected drug traffickers amounted to “incitement to violence and killing, a crime under international law”.

In an expletives-laden tirade against the UN on Sunday, Mr Duterte branded the experts “stupid”, saying they should count the number of innocent lives lost to drugs.

“I do not want to insult you. But maybe we’ll just have to decide to separate from the United Nations,” he said.

“If you are that rude, we might just as well leave,” he said.

“So take us out of your organisation. You have done nothing. Where were you here the last time? Never. Except to criticise,” he said.

Mr Duterte said the UN should refund its contribution “so we can go out”.

Mr Duterte said the UN had been unable to combat hunger and terrorism and had failed to end the killing of civilians in Iraq and Syria.

“You now, United Nations, if you can say one bad thing about me, I can give 10 [about you]. I tell you, you are [useless]. Because if you are really true to your mandate, you could have stopped all these wars and killings.”

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the UN’s Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) have both condemned Mr Duterte’s “apparent endorsement of extrajudicial killings, which is illegal and a breach of fundamental rights and freedoms”.

Mr Duterte was sworn in as president in June, after winning a landslide election victory.

He had previously been mayor of the country’s third biggest city, Davao, for 22 years where his tough approach and controversial comments earned him the nickname “The Punisher”.


Bbc. 2016-08-23. Philippines war on drugs: ‘1,900 killed’ amid crackdown

The head of the Philippines police has said more than 1,900 people have been killed during a crackdown on illegal drugs in the past seven weeks.

*

Ronald de la Rosa was speaking at a senate hearing into the sharp rise in deaths since Rodrigo Duterte became president.

He said police operations had killed about 750 people, but the other deaths were still being investigated.

Mr Duterte won the presidency with his hard-line policy to eradicate drugs.

He has previously urged citizens to shoot and kill drug dealers who resisted arrest, and reiterated that the killings of drug suspects were lawful if the police acted in self-defence.

He also threatened to “separate” from the UN after it called his war on drugs a crime under international law.

The US has said it is “deeply concerned” by the increase in drug-related killings.

The senate joint inquiry is being conducted by Senator Leila de Lima, who has called on authorities to explain the “unprecedented” rise in deaths.

It is also hearing from the relatives of some of those killed.

Mr dela Rosa told the inquiry on Tuesday that a total of 1,916 deaths had been recorded during the crackdown, 756 of which were during police operations.

He said the number had gone up even since he gave evidence on Monday, where he gave a figure of 1,800 deaths.

“Not all deaths under investigations are drug-related,” he told news agency Reuters, saying about 40 killings were due to robbery or personal disputes.

However, Mr dela Rosa said there was no declared policy to kill drug users and pushers, saying police were “not butchers”.

The police director-general also added that about 300 police officers were suspected to be involved in the drugs trade, warning that they would be charged and removed from their positions if found guilty.

Nearly 700,000 drug users and peddlers have turned themselves in since the launch of the campaign, Mr dela Rosa said.

He also said that there was a decrease in overall crime, though the number of homicides and murders had increased.

On Monday, Mr dela Rosa told the inquiry: “I admit many are dying but our campaign, now, we have the momentum.”

Senator Frank Drilon told Reuters that the number of deaths was “alarming” and had “a chilling effect”.

In his previous role as mayor of Davao, Mr Duterte built a reputation for blunt speaking and supporting the extrajudicial killings of suspected criminals.

Crime rates in Davao decreased while he was in office, though human rights groups estimate than more than 1,000 people were killed with no legal process.


Ansa. 2016-09-06. Duterte insulta Obama, salta l’incontro in Laos

 Il presidente delle Filippine, Rodrigo Duterte, minaccia Barack Obama di non interferire negli omicidi extragiudiziari oppure “figlio di p…, te la farò pagare” all’imminente summit in Laos. Duterte ha risposto così alla domanda di un reporter su come avrebbe spiegato a Obama l’alto numero di omicidi extragiudiziali, nell’imminente faccia a faccia previsto a margine del vertice Asean in Laos dove i due presidenti si recheranno nelle prossime ore. E ha sottolineato di essere il leader di un Paese sovrano e di dover rispondere solo al popolo filippino. In due mesi di ‘lotta alla droga’ lanciata da Duterte, la polizia filippina ha ucciso oltre 2000 sospetti spacciatori o trafficanti di droga, secondo un documento del governo di Manila. Ad agosto Washington aveva espresso preoccupazione.

Obama, alla luce degli insulti ricevuti da Duterte, ha detto di aver chiesto al suo staff di valutare se il previsto incontro con il capo di Stato filippino possa essere ancora “produttivo”. In serata la Casa Bianca ha comunicato che l’incontro tra i due presidenti è stato annullato.

“Il presidente non avrà un bilaterale con Rodrigo Duterte. Incontrerà invece la presidente della Corea del Sud, Park Geun-hye”.