Kinda makes this Soviet-style military parade in Beijing's infamous Tiananmen Square an ominous harbinger of things to come, doesn't it?:
China put on its biggest display of military might on Thursday in a parade to commemorate victory over Japan in World War Two, an event shunned by most Western leaders but which underscored Beijing's growing confidence in its armed forces.
I've no doubt that Barack Obama made sure that the U.S. was represented. All part of "keeping good relations" with our eventual conquerors.
President Xi Jinping, speaking on a rostrum overlooking Beijing's Tiananmen Square before the parade began, offered an unexpected olive branch by saying China would cut its troop levels by 300,000. That would streamline one of the world's biggest militaries, currently around 2.3-million strong.
Wait for it....
Xi gave no timeframe for the troop cut, adding China would always "walk down the path of peaceful development".
And we know how Chairman Mao defined peace, now don't we?
More than 12,000 soldiers, mostly Chinese but with contingents from Russia and elsewhere, then began marching down Changan Avenue, led by veterans of World War Two carried in vehicles. [emphasis added]
"Elsewhere," hm? North Korea, perhaps? Iran? The Islamic State? Maybe all three?
They will be followed by a range of ballistic missiles, tanks and armoured vehicles, many never seen in public before. Advanced fighter jets and bombers are also due to fly overhead.
Among the weapons China will unveil for the first time is an anti-ship ballistic missile, the Dongfeng-21D, which is reportedly capable of destroying an aircraft carrier with one hit.
Remember the lone area in which the U.S. still has naval superiority over the Sino-Russian Axis? Scratch that one off the list.
Lined up in a sidestreet were also several intercontinental ballistic missiles such as the DF-5B and the DF-31A as well as the DF-26 intermediate range ballistic missile (IRBM), dubbed the "Guam killer" in reference to a U.S. Pacific Ocean base.
This is a country that is on an all-out war footing. It really couldn't be any more obvious.
Which makes Thomson/Reuters' callow naivete and historical ignorance almost quaint:
For Xi, the parade is a welcome distraction from the country's plunging stock markets, slowing economy and recent blasts at a chemical warehouse that killed at least 160 people.
No, it's not a "distraction," it's the whole point. Xi is the one doing the plunging as an act of economic warfare against a West that has foolishly made itself dependent upon fictitious Chinese "markets" and enormously indebted itself to the ChiComm government. The objective, to create economic turmoil and fear and unrest in the U.S. so as to set the stage for the next, more direct, phase of the coming conflict.
And that segues to the core story:
In what appears to be a first, five Chinese naval vessels have been spotted operating in the Bering Sea, off the Alaska Coast, the Wall Street Journal reports.
The group consists of three Chinese combat ships, a replenishment vessel and an amphibious landing ship, officials told the Journal.
"We respect the freedom of all nations to operate military vessels in international waters in accordance with international law," said Pentagon spokesman Commander Bill Urban.
"This is the first time we have observed [People's Liberation Navy] ships in the Bering Sea."
Well, now, isn't that interesting? What business does the PLN have sending naval task forces to buzz the Alaskan coastline, do you suppose? Reconnaissance, perhaps? A stiff message to The One, who just happens to be in Alaska this week kicking back with the polar bears? The convergence of the two seems to be quite a bit less than a coincidence.
We are growing ever closer to this scenario....:
Ironically, the blizzard of YJ-82X cruise missiles launched from the Chinese subs lying off the coast of Baja California crossed the beach directly over the SEAL training complex on Coronado. America had decided that its special forces were a cheap substitute for the less glamorous hardware and formations that had traditionally been the foundation of American military power. Now, those elite warriors watched helplessly as the missiles roared overhead north toward the two carriers berthed at North Island.
The casualties would have been much higher if the Navy had been able to fully man the U.S.S. Carl Vinson and the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan. As it was, when the missiles tore into their hulls and exploded, only several hundred sailors died instead of thousands. Still, in a few moments, two of America’s nine carriers were twisted hulks spewing radioactive smoke. Another dozen Navy ships berthed at local bases were in flames.
Only the people lining the downtown San Diego waterfront saw what was happening, though local TV camera crews were filming the carnage live. Their stations tried to upload the footage to the network satellites but they could not connect. The satellites were gone, knocked out by Russian ASAT missiles.
The rest of America was oblivious to the catastrophe in San Diego, and the similar disaster in Norfolk.
....becoming a terrifying reality.
And none of us - aside from thee and me - will see it coming. Even after it hits.
Exit question: Who will President Trump have to call a "loser" after he unconditionally surrenders? Something tells me President Xi won't be an option anymore.