Monday, July 11, 2005

News of the Day (July 11)

Talks on Stalinist North Korea’s nuclear weapons to start in two weeks: Here we go again. Stalinist North Korea announced it would “resume negotiations in Beijing during the week of July 25” (Washington Times) on its nuclear weapons program. The Stalinists made the decision to return to the talks “after the U.S. made it clear it recognized North Korea as a sovereign state and that it would not invade” (Cybercast News). SNK took that “as a ‘retraction’ of Ms. Rice's earlier criticism of Pyongyang as an ‘outpost of tyranny’” (Voice of America via Epoch Times). Amid the euphoria, it would be good to remember that the talks, which also include the U.S., Communist China, Russia, Japan, and South Korea, have pushed the Bush Administration substantially away from its initial insistence that SNK completely dismantle its nuclear weapons program before any discussion of aid and/or diplomatic relations. Now, the Stalinists can get aid by merely promising to dismantle its nuclear arsenal – and even that may be dropped for something more generous to the Stalinists (Washington Post). Will they never learn?

Rice calls for talks between Communist China and Taiwan: Meanwhile, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice – whose visit to Communist China was largely upstaged by the above – called on the Communists to “begin direct talks with Taiwan's government” (BBC). The elected government of Taiwan is the only entity to which Communist China hasn’t talked; they prefer pumping up opposition leaders at the government’s expense.

Other Taiwan news: President Chen Shui-bian publicly criticized the U.S. over the current imprisonment of New York Times reporter Judith Miller (Newsmax). Chunghwa Telecom, Taiwan’s government-owned phone company, is about to offer 13% of itself on the New York Stock Exchange. The government “intends eventually to cut its stake in Chunghwa to less than 50 percent” (United Press International via Washington Times).

Chen Yonglin releases espionage documents, blasts Communist ambassador: Former Communist political consul Chen Yonglin “made public three documents, which he says show the Australian Chinese community is being spied on” (Epoch Times), and detailed how the Communist consulate in Sydney “approached Sydney councils to get them to restrict the activities of dissidents, and in particular, Falun Gong practitioners.” Chen also publicly rebuked Fu Ying, Communist China’s Ambassador to Australia, for claiming he was lying about his spying claims. However, Chen also noted how Fu suffered during the Cultural Revolution, and expressed hope “that Fu will soon find the courage to resign from her post” (Epoch Times).

U.S.-Communist talks on textiles begin: Communist China and the United States have begun talks in part on textiles (BBC), stemming from U.S. restrictions on Communist imports – itself a reaction to a surge in said imports after worldwide trade restrictions ended (fifth item). The Communists have crowded out nearly everyone else – including many developing nations – in the textile market due to its use of prison labor and refusal to allow independent trade unions (fourth and second items).

On Unocal: The Washington Post continues to distinguish itself for bad analysis of Communist China’s attempt to buy Unocal. An unnamed piece in the paper’s Business section calls all national security concerns about the deal “bogus,” but at least recognizes that the involvement of the CCP makes this “hardly the purely free-market transaction that (China National Offshore Oil Corporation head) Fu (Chengyu) claims it is.” An Op-ed column in the paper by David J. Rothkopf – former deputy undersecretary of commerce in the Clinton administration – is far worse; it actually talks of a “shared sense of values” between the U.S. and Communist China! Meanwhile, Bill Powell, Time Asia, details how the CNOOC bid took shape.

More on Communist China and the United States: Edward Lanfranco, UPI (via Washington Times), examines the geopolitical situation in Central Asia. Alan Reynolds, of the Cato Institute, is more interested in whacking textile magnate Roger Milliken, but in the process, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) gets slapped with the label of “co-author of the most dangerous act of trade warfare since 1930” (Washington Times). The editors of the aforementioned Washington Post give a decent list of “genuine points of conflict with China,” but don’t include Unocal or the currency issue, which are dubbed “phony ones.” Meanwhile, Post columnist Sebastian Mallaby has a column on the Communist economy subtly shot through with “engagement” talking points.

On the Falun Gong War: The Communists’ determination to destroy Falun Gong has separated yet another family – that of Celia Wong, whose husband is only halfway through his prison sentence in Communist China. Lori Har-El, Epoch Times, was there for Celia’s reunion with her nine-year-old daughter in New York.

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