Asian Century By Herman Tiu Laurel
On August 31, 2022, Malaysiakini, the Malaysian newspaper, headlined: “Citing US ‘provocation’ Dr M calls on Asean to pivot towards China.”
This is a powerful call that should reverberate not only across Asean, but throughout the world. It is a courageous statement from a usually reticent Asean (and Asian) citizen who is often too polite to tell the Americans and Western Powers that Asean and Asia wants peace and not tension and provocations.
I hope that this call of Mahathir will shake up some U.S. policy makers, legislators and military high brass that their strategy of tension around the issue of the Taiwan island and militarization of the South China Sea is backfiring on them and alienating Asean nations. However, I wouldn’t bet that the West can ever change its battle fatigue colors and camouflage approach to all issues of international import. The West’s colonialist and imperialist hegemony mindset simply can’t shed its arrogance.
By saying what he said through the Financial Times, a Western global publication, Mahathir really intended to shake up the West as well as Asean and Asian capitals and populations to the threat of war the Americans are now seriously posing on the region. His additional message is to stop American provocations by clearly siding with China on its One China policy and openly telling the Americans that “We will not be with you in the provocations for war!”
Maybe we should shout out even more emphatically in the language of anti-American street protests that “Yankee Go Home!” In Pilipino we could also add ”Tama na, Sobra Na, Alis Na” (Enough now, Too much now, Get Out”). It’s really about time that the all the peoples of Asean are drilled on this slogan because the U.S. of A. is not only threatening but actually building up to the next war in Asia to destroy its Rise and restore Western hegemony over the region.
Philippines should be especially worried
In a war planning exercise of the U.S. thinktank Center of National Security (CNS) that Dr. Dan Steinbock of the Difference Group first reported in Philippine media by, the U.S. foreign policy under the Biden-Blinken guidance is shifting its priorities away from the Ukraine War towards Asia. As we have been following, the debate in U.S. Deep State circles has apparently achieved consensus to refocus its war-making from Ukraine to the Taiwan Straits to destabilize the region.
The U.S. goal in Ukraine was not only to maim Russia’s society and economy but also to do the same to its allies in the E.U., particularly Germany and France who would pose a real threat to U.S. dominance of the West if they developed beyond a point. Unfortunately, weak leaders o ensconced by the Americans in Germany (particularly the Greens) and France could not resist US-NATO impositions and really implement the Minsk Agreement with Russia that would stop NATO expansion.
The E.U. continues to decline with the U.K. now slipping to sixth place behind India in the world economic rankings. Meanwhile, German industry is trying desperately to stay ahead of the U.S. sabotage of its economy by investing heavily inside China to ensure its future viability and profitability even as its home base in Europe is being destroyed by U.S. machinations that had invited Russian retaliation to weaponize its gas and energy fuel exports to the E.U.
In the CNS war planning scenario for war in the Taiwan Straits, the expected response of China to a Taiwan war is nuclear retaliation. This will consist of major missile targeting, including nukes of six sites in Japan, a major hit on Hawaii, several targets in Guan, and a major hit in Northern Luzon, while the U.S. forces will strike three major targets in China across Taiwan. China is not shown to strike at Taiwan, leaving it safe and implying that China would not hurt its brother on that island.
BBM Heeding Mahathir?
PBBM is on state visits to Indonesia and Singapore from September 4 to 7. Will the Mahathir call to Asean be discussed? I see no reason why this can’t be raised as the tensions in the Taiwan Straits and its impact of Asean will certainly be a serious common concern of the three state leaders in their two separate meetings. We should note that the main common ground for Asean talks on the US provocations in Taiwan is the Philippines. Therefore, can they support the Philippines in taking a Mahathir stance?
Aside from the Philippines, no other Asean state will be affected directly by a conflict in the Taiwan Straits. The Philippines, and only the Philippines, that will be hit by the retaliatory response of China in an attack on its territorial sea and air space around Taiwan. The governor of the Philippines’ northern Cagayan Province has already raised fears about the US-AFP Balikatan exercises held in early 2022 with live-fire drills around his province and its waters and its impact on the economy of his region.
In the worst-case scenario where the U.S. uses its first strike option with nukes, expect Cagayan Valley to be actually hit by nukes from China. Cagayan Governor Manuel Noveno Mamba Sr. has every reason to be afraid of the Balikatan Exercises in his region when he also said, ““We don’t want to anger China here in Cagayan. We see that we could get help from them.” For his remark, Mamba has tagged by the Inquirer as a “pro-China governor”, further defining the Inquirer as anti-China and Pro-American.
Under PBBM, the Philippines foreign policy posture is adhering strictly to the “neutralist” policy and demeanor that has been taken by the anti-US imperialist sector in Philippine polity as being “too soft on American imperialism.” The “neutralist policy is too ambiguous for the comfort of anti-imperialist Filipino advocates, unlike Duterte who was vitriolic anti-US imperialist. BBM may have his own style but signals have already been beamed that China is the Philippines’ “strongest partner”; this should be enough for the moment.
Alert Filipino people!
In making this startling call to “Pivot to China” to oppose and stop that war, former Malaysian Prime Minster Mohamad Mahathir has demonstrated enough alarm about the plans of the U.S. and the West to foment war in our region to. Filipinos should be equally alarmed, but they are not – because the complacent(if not collaborationist), mainstream media owned by oligarchs, are controlled by the West. ABS-CBN is owned by Lopezes who are Americans; while US-Philippine Council co-chair Pangilinan controls TV5, Philstar, Inquirer and, Rappler et al.
The alternative to overcome the domination of US-linked mainstream media in the Philippines is the government network and the social media networks of RP1, SMNI, Net 25, UNTV, and even the Asian Century Journal website that we are now building. The enlightened, nationalist, patriotic writers in mainstream media have also helped a lot and will continue to be among the main counter to US misinformation and disinformation through the Amboys. The Philippines and Filipinos must be informed that our fate will be the same as the Ukraine that we see today, six months after war with Russia. And ASEAN will suffer the same fate as the E.U. if the U.S..-designed war will break out in this region. For now, the war is in Media, Media, Media to inform the peoples of Asia to reject US wars to suppress Asia’s Rise by destroying Asia’s Peace and Progress and wrecking the brotherhood of the region. We should shout again and again, “Yankee Go Home!”