Grant Newsham

The Chinese Communist Party Is Afraid of Its Own Citizens

Like all dictatorships, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leadership presents itself as strong, secure, popular, in total control — and entitled to rule. Yet beneath this image (one that all too many foreigners often fall for), there’s a paranoia that the protective façade might collapse and leave the CCP exposed.

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Escalation in the Senkaku Islands? It’s China’s Choice

It has been nearly 15 years since the Chinese started moving in on Japan’s Senkaku Islands. Chinese pressure is indeed troublesome, but for now, it’s manageable – even if the Japan Coast Guard and Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) are overstretched.  The Japanese have patiently dealt with near-daily aggression and pressure from Chinese naval, coast guard, maritime

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Talisman Sabre 2023 Joint Exercise with Japan, SK, US, Germany, and Australia

Japan Flexes Military Muscles in Australia

The Talisman Saber 2023 exercise has finished in Australia. The exercise included 13 countries and was an impressive and complex mix of amphibious, maritime, ground, air and combined arms training. And all geared toward war-fighting. Even Japan’s Self-Defense Force (JSDF) sent a contingent. Japan’s contingent included the Japanese navy, along with amphibious ships JS Izumo and JS

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US soldiers during an exercise in Palau in 2019

COFA Renewals Key to US Defense of Pacific

How does a great power get itself defeated? Sometimes it does too much – as in America’s 20-year effort to turn Afghanistan and Iraq into countries more to its liking. And sometimes it does too little – as is happening in the Central Pacific. That is where Chinese influence has gradually eroded

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Blinken

The Chinese Military Won’t Talk To the US ー So What?

During his recent visit to China, Secretary of State Antony Blinken repeatedly asked his hosts to set up a military-to-military crisis communications hotline. They declined. USINDOPACOM commander, Admiral John Aquilino complained earlier this year that the Chinese were ignoring his requests to establish direct communications channels with the Chinese military People’s Liberation Army (PLA) regional commands. And Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin was rebuffed when he

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Kadena Air Base, Okinawa

Okinawa Is Still Strategically Important

Okinawa isn’t in the news nearly as much as it was some year’s back, when most reporting focused on noisy protest groups demanding United States’ military forces leave. The Japanese government sometimes even seemed to wish the Americans might go away and only return when needed.  Times have changed. Nowadays the

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US Marine disaster response in Nepal

The US Marine Corps: Missing in Action

US Marine Corps Commandant General David Berger told a United States Congressional committee the other day that he had let down the “combatant commander.” The United States Marines Corps were unable to have Marines in position to assist US citizens during the ongoing fighting in Sudan and to provide assistance after a recent earthquake in Turkey. But he’s

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ointly training: JASDF F15 fighter (three in the foreground) and US military F16 fighter on June 7, 2022.

Japan’s National Defense: What You Need to Know

Someone asked me a few questions about Japan’s national defense the other day. As expected, I gave my take on each one. Meanwhile, others might be just as curious about the current status of Japan’s preparedness. If so, then this is what you need to know: 1. What is motivating Japan and

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Taiwan Air Force RoCAF F-16A

US and Taiwan Militaries Doing More Together, but There’s a Catch

The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reported that the Americans will be deploying as many as 200 troops to Taiwan to serve in training and advisory roles to Taiwan’s military. This is a good development. If properly deployed, a hundred or two hundred troops can have a positive, even outsized, effect. Among other

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