Boulders versus pearls

It is quite amusing reading Ravi Velloor’s article in the ST today. The world’s number one gangster went on a world tour to rope in the gangsters to contain the rise of China. On the other hand China was kept busy building ports and signing up commercial contracts with countries around the world. For that, China was described as a rogue and the gangsters anything but rogues. So who are the real rogues, someone trying to do business or someone signing military alliances? But the description of boulders to block pearls is most appropriate, rough and tough gangsters, in the form of boulders, blocking the way of business men doing their business. And India is the most willing of all the boulders to gang up with the evil Empire. It has its own strategic interests and wild ambition to be a world power other than the number one power in the Indian Ocean. Japan and South Korea could be taken for granted as they are mere semi colonies of the Empire. Ravi was also optimistic that Russia and Myanmar would fall in line to be proxies of the evil Empire. Would these two countries be so foolish to become the tools of the evil Empire and got dragged into a hostile conflict to serve the Empire? He should count another willing gangster in Vietnam to join the gang. Indonesia has wisely stayed clear of big power rivalry and choosing its own path of independence and neutrality. It is comfortable being the big brother of Asean. Only foolish rogue nations would gang up to threaten other countries in a pack. Birds of the same feather flock together. PS. Logging in from a laptop seems ok.


Matilah_Singapura said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matilah_Singapura said...

Ah, yes. Geo-politics: the on-going popular spectator sport since the beginning of man.

Back to the root cause of the problem -- no, it is not human nature per se -- it is the formation of states and the arbitrary lines aka "borders" which define them as separate "sovereign territories".

Having this kind of arbitrary demarcation allows the various states to form "temporary alliances" to wallop other states. Borders and territories shift and are re-defined over the course of history. Old enemies -- e.g. US and Russia could form alliances to strike at another state or block of states.

Every once in awhile, leaders of states lose their shit, and in paroxysms of psychosis -- and because they have ultimate power to garner resources -- start attacking each other. As human history has progressed, the weaponry used has resulted in more spectacular entertainment

In the olden days, locals were treated to men dressed up in regalia -- war was not only about conquest but also a "fashion statement" amongst "gentlemen".

During the 1st WW, the doctrine changed and civilians (non combatants) were initiated as "valid targets" in warfare. Needless to say, the fashion statement part in warfare went by the wayside. After round after round of heavy bombardment, most citizens looked like shit -- a pathetic bunch dragging their wounded and dead, hungry, unarmed and in despair.

Photographs of civilians who have been fucked up by war often win the coveted awards like the Pulitzer Prizes. This auspicious event is a real career game-changer for budding photo-journalists -- launching them to instant celebrity simply because they're really good at capturing human suffering and turning it into "art". (Fantastic!!)

Yes, it's time for war with China. Time for more Pulitzer Prizes. Let's face it -- we are a vicarious species -- we love action, we love watching geo-poltics -- as long as we're the ones who are not be bombed.

I say: On with the show!

Anonymous said...

Asians show get rid of their vanity and stop being used as proxies by western powers to kill one another. The best path is to build up one's own defence forces while develop economically.

Forget about the olden day dream of being a superpower. Even the US cannot afford to keep its huge armed forces and arsenal for much longer. It will bankrupt itself.

There is no more colonies to rob and loot to foot the bill. Look at UK, a spent force. Now living on the leftovers of the old empire loot. When the loot is spent, it will be another bankrupt European country.

Anonymous said...

another typo erro, show shld be should.

Wally Buffet said...

The Chinese are not afraid of being ring fenced. They are more interested in owning more of the world. They go where others fear to tread such as in darkest Africa.

In fact, China has advanced to the point that it now can be a universe and an economic entity unto itself and have nothing more to do with the outside world, led by the Big Gangsta and his little farts following like meek dogs.

Within China, there is enough people, land, resources and food to sustain itself, "hermetically" sealed so to speak from the wolves baying at the gates.

Anonymous said...

In the 19th it was attacked by 8 nations and stripped of everything, including dignity. It must be always on guard against another of such attack by the wolfpack.

When it was attacked in the 19th century, no one came to its aid. Today at least it can hope for a handful of countries on its side and it does not have to fight alone.

It must not be complacent and weaken its defences. The hideous Empire and Japan, and now with India and Vietnam are waiting to strike.

Matilah_Singapura said...


Dont' agree there. China may have made great strides, but they're not "secure" yet. Most of their population is still poor, they depend on their vast export revenues and the internal capital structures are no where near the western democracies which have been building their capital structures since the Industrial Revolution. In the case of America, they've been accumulating wealth since the 1600's and they do it exceedingly well.

Even present day when they are bankrupt several times over, the US is still accumulating wealth and building its productive capacity -- despite damaged capital structures.

China can't even deal with an earthquake or a serious flood.

Sure, one day China will catch up and "rule", but that is a few decades away at least.

On an end note -- China's capital structures are being built at a rate unknown to our species thus far. i.e. they're good at it and going really quickly.

Anonymous said...

Me thinks Indian Leaders are not that dumb, though they(Indian) did not have to fight the British to gain independence, they were conquered with force, though minimal.

Now, if India progresses economically, socially and politically as they are doing, Indians may get to experience good living soon. Why should it want to team up with a known trouble maker and others to have their(Indians) good living interrupted with bloodbath and damage??

A nation with more than 5000 years of civilization falling into the deception of a bully rogue country that could hardly solve it's own economical and rising social problems? Unlikely.


Matilah_Singapura said...


>Why should it want to team up with a known trouble maker and others to have their(Indians) good living interrupted with bloodbath and damage?? <

Agree. In an ordinary and rational world with rational people, that would seem insane and counter-productive.

However because we have nation-states and international borders, local politics soon merges with geo-politics. i.e. the self-interests in your own local political economy has to square with the geo-political realities, and so when the bully comes a ' knocking, you have little choice but to "pick a side".

India, with its present conservative government is blatantly pro-US. If not for India's call centers and IT industries in places like Bangalore, the US would definitely be worse off.

Matilah_Singapura said...

anon 230

> Even the US cannot afford to keep its huge armed forces and arsenal for much longer. It will bankrupt itself. <

The US govt has been insolvent for over 20 years now. It is way past "bankrupt". Even at a tax rate of 100% it would take about 30 years to pay down all the US debt.

...but the US military keeps on going. Why? Because the US is not alone -- it has many "partners" -- everyone from complicit governments, tyrants and their serf states, to political interests to weapons dealers and manufacturers.

Plus the US has the ability to print the world's reserve currency.

Sure, one day the house of straw will collapse, but not anytime soon.

The world has in recent times, been hit with many financial and economic crises -- all due to too much credit and money printing which add "uncertainty" and "chaos" to an already chaotic and uncertain system. Everytime this has happened other "developed" countries France, Greece, Germany, UK have been trashed by riots as their govts, with the IMF and World Bank (if its a Turd-World cuntry) scramble to put together "rescue" packages.

In the meantime, the average US consumer is getting fatter eating pizza and drinking beer watching Oprah on TV, and maxing out yet-another-credit-card on-line shopping fro another worthless trinket made in a Chinese sweat shop.

Sorry dude, that's the reality. Justice is not forthcoming anytime soon. Don't hold your breath.

Anonymous said...

me quite confident the Indians have more sense. China and India have been neighbours since when, nobody knows because it must have been long before any written word has been invented.

Let's take it as at 5000 years, within this period of history, other than some skirmishes, the two neighbours have been peaceful though not best in friendship. There was no historical record of China or China at war with each other to conquer one another.

Well, there was no instigator then, one may likes to say. Okay, the US of A is only about 2 and a half century old and active for more than fifty years. What has the bully achieved other than decimating the original people of America, the Red Indians.

Yes, it has always being called the most powerful, so were many others including its' forefather the Brits which was one time the biggest empire. The Romans, Turks, the Mongolians etc.

India too, was powerful during the Sri Vijaya and Majapahit times, but it was a friend of China about 2500 years ago when Indians brought Buddhism to China. Me does not learnt of any India invading China history.

All things considered, me thinks the whole World now knows what the US is all about. And it is only wise for the US to learn to take care of it own affairs before the American people suffer at the hands of their own leaders.

Just personal views, so take it with a PINT of salts, a pinch will not be enough eh.


Anonymous said...

yes, the Indians are more astute that what the yanks take for, trying to instigate them to join them in 'barricading'. A wise Indian statesman was quoted to have said that "China is just next door to us" implying the stupidity of ganging up with others to stir the hornet's nest. Barring the western and Indian media hooha, the Chinese and Indians are enjoying the best of relationships in terms of trade and economic exchanges and cooperation - what could be more sustainable for peace than this.

As for Vietnam, they appear to be trying to play a little game and they will get badly burnt by the yanks. Or is there more to what they are trying to do, bearing in mind the atrocities they suffered at the hands of their former white enenmies?

Anonymous said...

India is caught between its ambition to be a super power and the need to keep peace with its neighbours. Any hostility between India and China will waste time and effort and resources for their economic development. And the country benefiting and laughing quietly will be the US.

Asians must not be messed up with wars, especially instigated by the West. Let the wars be fought by the West with the West or in any place except Asia.

The Vietnamese defeated the French and the Americans and thought they were invincible until they got black eyed by the peasant soldiers from their north. They cannot swallow this humiliation and wanted to redeem themselves somehow. The Americans will come in handy. But they did not know how dangerous and destructive this game can turn out to be.