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China US tension: American commander seeks US$27 billion to hold back PLA in the Indo Pacific
The commander in charge of United States military operations in aaa replica designer handbags the Indo Pacific has asked the US Congress for more than US$27 billion in extra funds for new military construction and to boost cooperation with allies to maintain an edge over China. Submitted to Congress on Monday, the proposal by Indo Pacific Command chief Admiral Philip Davidson outlined a total of US$27.3 billion in additional spending, including US$4.6 billion for the Pacific Deterrence Initiative for next year and extra funds for new missiles and air defences, radar systems, staging areas, intelligence sharing centres, supply depots and testing ranges throughout the region, as well as exercises with allies and partners between 2022 and 2027, Defense News reported, citing an unclassified executive summary of the report by the Indo Pacific Command. In the report, Davidson proposed to build a US$2.3 billion constellation of space based radars that could serve Aegis Ashore and the Palau replica louis vuitton bags system. He seeks US$206 million for “specialised manned aircraft to provide discrete replica louis vuitton handbags , multi source intelligence collection requirements” across the region, along with US$3.3 billion for ground based, long range fires reaching over 500km (310 miles). The US “requires highly survivable, precision strike networks along the first island chain, featuring increased quantities of ground based weapons,” Davidson wrote, as reported by Breaking Defense digital magazine. Last year in a report to Congress, Davidson proposed spending an extra US$18.5 billion until 2026 based on the idea of a Pacific version of the European Deterrence Initiative, a special fund to deal with Russia in Europe. China and Indo Pacific in US military sights as Pentagon takes fresh look at forces In a conference on Monday, Davidson also called for major investment for training between the US and allies. “We must convince Beijing that the costs to achieve its objectives by military force are simply too high,” Breaking Defense reported Davidson saying. Davidson is expected to formally roll out the report at an event on Thursday hosted by the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington based think tank. Observers in China said the latest proposal by Davidson was part of efforts by the Pentagon to enhance posturing against China. “Apparently it is targeting China,” said Liu Weidong, a US affairs expert from the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. “I don’t think China would go toe to toe but would continue to carry out its own plan to develop its military capacity.” Song Zhongping, a Hong Kong based military commentator, said Beijing was also prepared to deal with growing challenges from the US. “The People’s Liberation Army is developing new types 1:1 replica handbags of weapons, including hypersonic weapons, to counter the offensive and defensive military strategy by the US,” Song said. Military rivalry between China and the US continues to grow under the Biden administration. On Monday, US Defence Secretary Lloyd Austin hosted the first meeting of the new China Task Force at the Pentagon, during which he provided some “initial guidance” for what both the White House and the Pentagon have described as a “sprint” to identify priorities in its competition with China. Monday’s meeting “is intended to formalise the mission, timing and outputs of the task force as they work towards a baseline assessment of departments, policies, programmes and processes on China related matters,” Pentagon press secretary John Kirby said, adding that the task force was expected to complete its work within four months. Additional reporting by Kristin HuangMore from South China Morning Post:South China Sea: PLA starts month long drill in push to modernise soldiers while resisting US operationsSouth China Sea: PLA stages live fire missile drill, US Navy on Paracels patrolSouth China Sea: how the US Navy aims to better home in on targetsChinese bombers in strike exercises after US escalation in South China SeaThis article China US tension: American commander seeks US$27 billion to hold back PLA in the Indo Pacific first appeared on South China Morning PostFor the latest news from the South China Morning Post download our mobile app. A fellow activist mourns a grandmother whose Hong Kong grave she may never visit. These are the Canadian Hongkongers who say they will never return to the city they once called home, as they navigate the complicated legal and emotional landscape of dual citizenship. Davin Wong, once a key player in the Hong Kong protest movement as president of Hong Kong University’s student union, is now studying law at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. He also lobbies the Canadian government about his former home. “If I set foot in Hong Kong again then they definitely have very good grounds to arrest me cheap louis vuitton bags from china uk ,” said Wong, who fled the city in August 2019, less than 24 hours after he was attacked on the street amid a spate of assaults on activists. He said he had no doubt that his activities in Canada put him in breach of the sweeping national security law, which cheap louis vuitton bags from china uk Beijing imposed in Hong Kong last year: “I mean, come on. I’m telling Canada to punish Fake Louis Vuitton Replica Bags these guys.” The law targets secession, subversion, terrorism and foreign interference, but critics see it as a means to suppress dissent and freedom. It applies not just to activities in Hong Kong or China, but anywhere in the world. Hong Kong ‘strictly enforcing’ dual nationality policy, Carrie Lam says Canadian media has reported that dual citizens in Hong Kong will be forced to choose a single nationality, citing the case of a prisoner asked to declare either Canadian or Chinese citizenship. Canada’s government estimates there are about 300,000 Canadians in Hong Kong. A source told the SCMP recently that about 100 inmates in Hong Kong prisons held dual nationality, and since January they had been asked to declare a single citizenship for the purpose of determining eligibility for consular access. But since the 1997 handover, neither China nor the Hong Kong government have regarded Canadian or other dual citizens in Hong Kong as being entitled to consular protection. That was laid out when the National People’s Congress issued a set of “explanations” in 1996 about nationality and Hongkongers. These do not mention foreign passports or dual citizenship but instead refer to Chinese nationals who have obtained “documents issued by the foreign governments” for the purpose of travelling. Such people “will not be entitled to consular protection in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and other parts of the People’s Republic of China on account of their holding the above mentioned documents”. While China’s nationality law says people who acquire foreign nationality lose Chinese citizenship, Hongkongers are regarded as exceptions. Hong Kong banks won’t take BN(O) passports; inmates must choose one nationality Meanwhile, Hongkongers wanting to declare themselves solely Canadian are required to undertake a formal renunciation of Chinese citizenship, conducted by the Hong Kong Immigration Department. Successful applicants it is a discretionary process lose their right of abode in Hong Kong but not their residency, automatically receiving the “right to land”, a lower status that still allows someone to live, work and study in Hong Kong. But there is a substantial potential cost, since people with only the right to land cannot receive government benefits or assistance. They also lose their political rights and can be deported if convicted of a serious crime, including breaches of the security law. Choosing a single nationality is not a simple decision, even for dual citizen Hongkongers living in Canada who do not consider themselves Chinese. None of those who told the Post they were never returning to Hong Kong had undertaken renunciation. Wong who was born in Canada had considered renunciation “because I felt more threatened and insecure holding Chinese nationality”. “But now that Canada broke off our extradition arrangement with Hong Kong I found there is less of an urgency to do so,” he said. It is just one aspect of the tangled consequences of dual nationality. The separatist Ai Men Lau, 27, posted a declaration on Twitter on July 2 last year, after the introduction of the security law. It said she had “no intentions of returning to Hong Kong or visiting China in the foreseeable future”. “That’s still very much how I feel,” said Lau, who works in Ottawa for the Macdonald Laurier Institute public policy think tank. It was “not feasible” that she return because of her advocacy for Alliance Canada Hong Kong, a group that supports the Hong Kong protest movement. Born in Canada in 1993, Lau obtained her Hong Kong permanent ID card and right of abode as a pre handover birthright, by having a Hong Kong immigrant mother. Her family spent years travelling between Thailand where Lau’s father worked and Hong Kong. You might high quality designer replica handbags wholesale have been born in Canada but does Beijing think you are Chinese? Her connection to Hong Kong was hard to describe, Lau said, and the relationship ambiguous, reflecting her family’s own complicated history; her mother’s father was Pakistani. But “Hong Kong is one of my homes”, said Lau, where as a child she wandered the streets in search of pineapple buns. “There was a level of comfort I cheap louis vuitton bags from china got in Hong Kong that I don’t get in Canada,” she said. She wanted to return, applying to the University of Hong Kong to study for a master’s degree, and considering working in the city, “when everything exploded in Hong Kong” in the summer of 2019. Her plans to resettle were upended, and the security law meant that living in Hong Kong “was not going to be in my future any more”; her last trip to the city was in 2015. She has not been able to visit the grave of her grandmother, who died recently. Her mother has also decided never to return to Hong Kong, which also grieves Lau. “I miss seeing my mom in Hong Kong. That relief and comfort. How happy she replica louis vuitton bags from china seems there So that is pretty painful.” When the security law was introduced, Lau said she “experienced all five stages of grief at once”. I, Ai Men Lau, have no intentions of returning to Hong Kong or visiting China in the foreseeable future. I speak for myself and only myself. My opinions, comments, advocacy work, and professional work do not reflect my family, my friends, and colleagues. Lau has changed too. In the summer of 2019, she was uncertain of exactly where she stood with the protest movement. At the time, she said she was shocked by the attitude of some protesters that “if we burn, you burn too”. Why don’t Hong Kong Canadians just say they are Chinese? Now, she says she is a Hong Kong separatist, and doesn’t think of Hong Kong as part of China. “I want Hong Kong to be Hong Kong, and at this point I don’t see any other option than being a separatist because ‘one country, two systems’ has utterly failed,” she said. As for her own status, Lau said she was grappling with whether to cancel her Hong Kong ID card. Lau could also technically be considered a Chinese national because her mother is a native born Hongkonger. “I haven’t thought about formally renouncing Chinese citizenship primarily because I have never identified as a Chinese national,” said Lau. But the security law meant renunciation could be “a wise decision”. It was, she said something else “to mull over”. The schoolboy Fifteen year old Hugh says his parents first discussed moving permanently to Canada with him when he was in second grade. But in June 2020, the decision was urgently brought forward by Hong Kong’s political upheaval. The national security law had just been proposed by the National People’s Congress. “It just seemed like the old Hong Kong was dead and thus we thought it would be better to leave,” he said. “But it was more bittersweet when it happened than seven year old me had been expecting,” he said. Moving to Canada during a pandemic has been a challenge; Hugh’s schooling has been largely conducted online, making it difficult to settle in. “Schoolwork is kind of a mess right now,” he said. His parents obtained Canadian citizenship after immigrating in the 1990s, just before the handover, but returned to Hong Kong, where Hugh was born in 2005. They won’t be going back, he said. Hugh’s parents approved of the Post’s interview with him but did not wish to take part. He was unwilling to be identified by his full name because he feared a social media “dog pile”. His family supported the protest movement, and he and his father joined the large protest marches in June 2019, leaving a profound impact on the teen. “It’s still an experience I try to digest to this very day,” he said. “It was a confluence of emotions. Both hope and fear” about how the huge turnout would anger Beijing. Hugh was only eight at the time of the 2014 “umbrella movement”, but he said those protests awakened his “civil consciousness” because his parents were so politically active. “In 2014 we’d already talked as a family about how, if there was a severe crackdown, then we would immediately get out of Hong Kong and move to Canada,” he recalled. Sometimes it’s better when something is dying, not to see it when it reaches its inevitable end High school student Hugh, on his family’s decision never to return to Hong Kong Hugh said that during the 2019 protests his high school’s administration had “pro Beijing sympathies” but its student body was “yellow” broadly supportive of the protest movement. He recalls a special assembly that June, called to discuss the protests, where he said he stood up for his beliefs to a “fanatically nationalist” teacher. “It was possibly the stupidest thing I have ever done, but I was proud of it,” Hugh said. He was 14. His family would not return to Hong Kong in the foreseeable future, he said. “It’s twofold. First off there are general concerns about any immigration laws they might pass, and how they deal with people who have dual citizenship. Would they not let me in? Would they detain people like that?” he said. “The other part is that sometimes it’s better when something is dying https://www.dolabuy.su/ , not to see it when it reaches its inevitable end.” But he remains a Chinese citizen, in the eyes of fake louis bag Beijing at least, which he said “represents a genuine danger to me from the aspect of the judicial reach of the CCP”. He would consider renunciation when he became an adult, he said. It was “jarring” to move from the political hothouse of a Hong Kong school, filled with like minded politically active students, to a Vancouver school where such concerns were distant for most of his classmates. Life in Vancouver was “a bit boring, but at this stage asking for boring may be the best possible thing,” he said; it was sometimes too painful to think about Hong Kong. “[But] when I miss my home even more than normal, and when I want to curl up in a ball against the door and cry, I think about the good moments.” The moments are mostly political: “seeing everybody come back for one last showdown”, lying awake at 2am and delighting online with his friends as they followed the 2019 district elections, when the pro democracy camp captured 17 out of 18 councils. “It was one of the best moments of my life,” Hugh said. Like most who have left Hong Kong, Hugh misses the food scene. He misses the friends he has known since early childhood. And he sometimes thinks of a particular replica louis vuitton boy. “We sort of had a relationship. As a boyfriend? But we sort of didn’t? So we left on good terms. But it was weird, is all I’m saying.” Pro establishment figure calls for curbs on Hongkongers obtaining dual citizenship They are still in touch. “They say distance makes the heart grow fonder but ” His voice trails off. Hugh says he is “gradually moving past the trauma” of how Hong Kong has changed, and while he doubts he will ever see the city again, “the people who leave Hong Kong, they are still carrying part of it with them in their souls. I’m sorry if that sounds so sappy.” The painter Ricker Choi, who immigrated from Hong Kong to Canada with his family in the 1980s, is a financial risk management consultant in Toronto. But his passion is the Hong Kong democracy movement. An accomplished pianist and artist, Choi composes and sells music in honour of the movement. He also sells protest themed paintings to raise money for Hongkongers seeking political asylum in Canada. He writes letters to jailed activists in Hong Kong. Choi said that when he moved to Canada high quality replica handbags china in his teens, he lost touch with his Hong Kong identity. “The most connection I had with Hong Kong was karaoke,” he said, as well as an occasional brief holiday (his most recent trip was in 2007). But 2019 changed everything. By then he had connected with his Hong Kong roots via Facebook, and the scenes of the June mass protests “had a huge emotional impact” on him. Meet the transnationals, who moved to Canada but never quite left Hong Kong “The unity they showed, then the police brutality, and how the protesters still insisted on fighting that moved me a lot,” Choi said. “Now I look at Hong Kong news every single day.” Ironically, it is only since the protest movement reignited his connection to Hong Kong that he has vowed never to return to the city. “It’s very risky now for someone like me who is politically active and is raising money to help political dissidents to come to Canada to seek refugee status,” he said. He fears arrest, citing the case of Hong Kong radio personality Giggs, who was charged with seditious intent this month after fundraising for young Hong Kong protesters to study in Taiwan. Choi rejected the idea that his lack of continuing direct connections to many people in Hong Kong means he isn’t entitled to his advocacy. “Human rights are a universal value,” he said. “It’s not just about Hongkongers. It’s about Uygurs, who are persecuted, Tibetans, who are persecuted. Myanmar, Thailand. People protest for their freedom everywhere.” He has joined protests in Toronto in support of the Hong Kong democracy movement, and found a network of like minded people. Choi says he has pro Communist friends too, “but I don’t talk to them much any more”, and his social media postings have led to him fall out with some. He is incredulous as he describes a Canadian born friend telling him that “democracy is overrated; it’s more important to be prosperous; Hong Kong is so good”. “He would send me propaganda. I can’t believe a Canadian born Chinese would watch this and believe it. I found it very disturbing,” he said. Choi’s paintings mostly depict well known scenes from Hong Kong’s upheaval protesters cowering on the floor of an MTR train, a motorcyclist flying a black “Liberate Hong Kong” flag as well as portraits of activists including Joshua Wong and Agnes Chow. Others depict a Hong Kong of the imagination: Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” is recast with sinister figures in white lurking in the background, carrying sticks. Another painting shows a flaming phoenix rising behind the silhouette of a protester. Choi says he will never go back to see the real thing for himself “as long as it is under CCP rule”. But nor does he have any plan to renounce his Chinese citizenship, judging it a pointless gesture. “The two Michaels are non Chinese, 100 per cent Canadian, and can still be unjustly imprisoned for two years, with access to Canadian consulate being refused arbitrarily, subjected to inhumane treatment, while [the] Canadian government can do nothing about it,” he said, referring to Michael Kovrig and Michael Spavor. They were detained in China in December 2018 and accused of espionage, days after Huawei Technologies Co. executive Meng Wanzhou was arrested on a US warrant in Vancouver. Chinese citizenship or not was “meaningless”, Choi said. The escapee Davin Wong can recall the moment he knew he had to leave Hong Kong with unusual pr.