When Trump left office and the Biden administration came into the White House, some people actually believed a nightmare was over. On the back of the January 6thcapitol riot, the ongoing presidency was portrayed as unhinged, dangerous and chaotic. Biden, as it goes, was supposed to be an adult in the room that would restore common sense and decency to America, bringing surety, stability and maturity back to politics.
Over the past few days, Israel has conducted a series of attacks against defense facilities in Iran. Reports show it has been done at the consent of the United States, amidst surging tensions in the Israeli-Palestine conflict and the return of hardliner Benjamin Netanyahu to office. In a statement, US Secretary Anthony Blinken appeared to reiterate his support for the attacks by saying the United States will use "every means" to prevent "Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon".
Yesterday, a number of British right-wing and Conservative linked tabloids began pushing a claim that “China could be spying on us through domestic appliances such as the fridge”. The article, citing a dubious report by a Washington D.C based think-tank, Observe, Orientate, Decide, Act (OODA)” claimed that through microchips embedded in “Chinese made appliances”, the country’s ruling Communist Party could potentially “spy on us” by handing “data back to Beijing”.
"Wishing everyone around the world a happy and healthy #YearoftheRabbit and #YearoftheCat. The United States enters this Lunar New Year optimistic that we can join our friends and allies around the world to create a better future for all."- US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken wrote on Twitter. While at first glance the message may seem a generic festival greeting, as has been seen many times, the tone of this message was in fact passive aggressive.
Yesterday China's first population decline since 1961 was announced, with the total number of people in the country shrinking by 850,000 since the previous year. The cause of the decline, which also coincides with a drop in fertility, is a product of a myriad of factors, including of course the legacy one of the one child policy, rising costs of living and the impact of the covid-19 pandemic.
"Industrial espionage: How China sneaks out America's technology secrets" the BBC's world service page leads with this morning. The article proceeds to set out the argument that China's rise in technological capabilities is attributed primarily to technology theft, citing as its primary source that well-known, good-faith and completely apolitical organization known as the FBI. Another article, from just three days ago, is titled: "US-China chip war: America is winning".
Kevin McCarthy was recently elected as the new speaker of the United States House of Representatives. The passing of the baton comes with the exit of Nancy Pelosi, who left her position following Republicans taking control of the House in the November 2022 mid-term elections.
South Korea was one of the countries, that follow the lead of the US, and rushed to impose travel restrictions on inbound Chinese travellers. While it should be taken into consideration that Seoul has always been serious in its approach to covid-19, more so than any western country (people here after all still wear masks in public life), the measures felt as if they were motivated by something more, that is a deep underlying racism and negative sentiment against Chinese people at large.
The media has been awash with a fresh series of controversies following from Prince Harry's yet-to-be-released autobiography "fair". Set out in candid terms, the estranged British Royal has illustrated the collision course between him, his elder brother William, and his father King Charles III, not just in respect to his wife Meghan, but throughout his entire life.
For over three years now, the Chinese technology company Huawei has been subject to a relentless campaign by the United States government to try and destroy its business. Having rose rapidly as one of the world's most successful telecommunications firm, beginning in 2018 Washington launched a campaign of aggression against it which involved coercing countries to ban it from its 5G networks, placing it under growing semiconductor and supply chain sanctions (including the foreign direct product rule).0
Throughout human history, disease outbreaks have long been a promulgator of racism and xenophobia. When the black death savaged medieval Europe in the 14th century, populations reacted by turning to antisemitism, weaponizing a claim that the disease was a conspiracy by Jews who had poisoned the water supply. This led to violence and pogroms throughout the continent. 5 centuries later, during the 19th century, when the Cholera epidemic emerged in England, people scapegoated that Irish immigrants has been responsible.
The year of 2022 is now coming to an end. In line with the previous two years, it has proved to be another year of uncertainty, disruption, and turbulence amidst a constantly changing world. As the globe started to move away from the covid-19 pandemic, the year started with a much more catastrophic and consequential event in the form of Russia's war in Ukraine, the largest conflict Europe has seen since the Second World War, and one which has unleashed seismic geopolitical consequences far beyond its own boundaries.
Just before Christmas the "National Defence Authorization Act" was passed by the Congress of the United States. The act is an annual ritual by Washington which might be described as the single largest act of military-industrial complex self-indulge by the United States. The $1 trillion-plus bill, which grows in size and scope year upon year, is never in doubt in terms of passing, but moves through congress via a tedious process of bipartisan haggling and negotiating as both sides seek to use the bumper bill to force through their respective agendas.
"China has outlined the way it counts COVID-19 deaths amid skepticism about the real impact of the disease"- a BBC report byline reads. The article, which doesn't even try to hide under the guise of impartiality, is quite clearly insinuating China of staging a coverup in regard to its COVID-19 death toll. As a new COVID wave sweeps the country following the government's decision to scale back its policy, the western media have not spread a single moment in going full-throttle to depict the new scenario as a disaster for Beijing.
As China continues to wrestle with its wave of covid, the mainstream media have taken no liberties in sticking the boot into Beijing as fiercely as possible, despite having literally vilified the ruling party for its zero-covid approach. In the process of doing so, familiar takes applied in Wuhan, including tedious speculation over the activity of crematoriums have re-emerged (Financial Times).