Tensions between China and the rest of the Pacific have escalated with a video from the Communist regime threatening Japan with nuclear war if it intervenes to save Taiwan.
“We will use nuclear bombs first. We will use nuclear bombs continuously. We will do this until Japan declares unconditional surrender for the second time. What we want to target is Japan’s ability to endure a war. As long as Japan realises that it cannot afford to pay the price of war, it will not dare to rashly send troops to the Taiwan Strait," said the video, with a backdrop not dissimilar to old WWII propaganda reels.
"In 1964, when our first atomic bomb was successfully, detonated we promised the world that we would not use atomic bombs against non-nuclear countries and that we would not be the first to use them. Nearly 60 years have passed. Although the strength of our nuclear deterrent has been somewhat affected, this decision has been a success and has safeguarded our peace when we built our country.
"Now the international situation has changed dramatically. Our country is in the midst of a major change that has not been seen in a century and all political policies, tactics and strategies must be adjusted and changed in the midst of such a major change. In order to protect the peaceful rise of our country, it is necessary to make limited adjustments to our nuclear policy. We solemnly put forward the “Japan Exception Theory”."
Taiwan was the trigger for the creation of China's nuclear arsenal, with Mao Zedong setting the process in motion during the First Taiwan Strait Crisis of 1954. China's current nuclear strength remains a state secret.
"If Japan goes to war with China for a third time, the Chinese people will take revenge on the old and new scores.
"If Japan interferes militarily in our domestic affairs including the unification of Taiwan by the mainland, nuclear weapons will surely be used against Japan and will be used continuously until its unconditional surrender. There will be no peace talks. In the meantime we will take back the Diaoyu Islands and the Ryukyu Islands."
It must be pointed out that the ‘peaceful rise’ quoted in the video relates to the armed invasion and implied full-scale war against Taiwan’s independence by Communist China. Japan’s actions would be defensive, not aggressive and any presumptive use of nuclear weapons by China against Japan would trigger war in the Pacific between the world’s largest military powers.
What China calls ‘a domestic affair’ is technically an international affair, as the government of Taiwan maintain their status as independent of China. ‘Unification’ is therefore more commonly referred to as a military invasion in which Japan has been invited to defend Taiwan against Chinese forces in the same way that Australia calls upon the US.
China's latest violation of international treaty regarding Hong Kong's return to China decades ahead of schedule has left the world in no doubt that the Communist Part of China (CCP) do not protect the free press or preserve civil rights during periods of 'liberation'.
It is not uncommon for the (CCP) to leak propaganda. The purpose is often to gauge the reaction of Western alliances to determine how they would react to lesser military aggressions.
However, there has been a marked increase in hostilities between the two nations, particularly surrounding the Communist Party's 100th Anniversary which saw the nation engage in many ceremonies and activities designed to show the Chinese people the CCP's strength on the global stage.
Britain has confirmed that it will post two warships in a permanent position in Asian waters. It is difficult to say whether or not the United States would wage a full military response to protect Taiwan. While the Republicans firmly assured Taiwan that they would, the Democrats have been less forthcoming under President Biden's term.
India is also a nuclear power with which China has been deliberately provoking armed skirmishes along disputed mountain borders for more than a year. Along with many South-East Asian countries, India is very concerned about China's 'water-politics' where Belt and Road infrastructure has been used to blackmail nations down stream with the threat of water scarcity. This has left the entire area politically unstable and unlikely to remain quiet if China were to start a war with Taiwan.
Taiwan is essentially the Poland of the Pacific, and while the island may seem isolated from American interests, in reality its survival as a sovereign nation holds the key to peace in the complex geopolitics of the Asian region. Japan, in particular, sees Taiwan as a stepping stone for China on its way to a possible act of retribution on Japan.
“If Taiwan falls, Okinawa will be next. We must think about this seriously and steadfastly prepare our defence might,” said Japan's Deputy Prime Minister, Tara Aso. “We must defend Taiwan, under our alliance with the US."
The fall of Taiwan would not only be a humanitarian disaster akin to the devastation of Tibet, it would threaten Japan's Okinawa Prefecture.
This situation follows on from the disturbing sentiments expressed by Xi Xinping at the 100th Anniversary celebrations.
"Resolving the Taiwan question, and realising China’s complete re-unification, is a historic mission and an unshakeable commitment of the Communist Party of China. It is also a shared aspiration of all the sons and daughters of the Chinese nation.
"We will uphold the one party principle and the 1992 consensus and advance peaceful national reunification.
"All of us compatriots on both sides of the Taiwan Strait must come together and move forward. In unison, we must take resolute action to utterly defeat any attempt towards Taiwan independence and work together to create a bright future for national rejuvenation.
"No one should underestimate the resolve – the will – and ability of the Chinese people to define their national sovereignty and territorial integrity."
State Minister of Defence Yasuhide Nakayama voiced his concern about the regional security threat. “We have to wake up. We have to prepare. We have to protect Taiwan as a democratic country.”
Australia is a long way from being 'awake' to the threat of China.
Ex-Minister for Defence Christopher Pyne's $90 billion submarine deal is widely acknowledged as a disaster for Australia's long term defence capabilities against China.
State governments such as Queensland have allowed the CCP via Chinese businesses to lease Australian islands, potentially allowing their harbours and airstrips to be used as military outposts within Australian territory.
The Foreign Investment Review Board approved a Chinese mining company lease on Cockatoo Island in Western Australia in close proximity to a military training area used by Regional Force Surveillance units and Special Forces units.
Various crucial Australian ports are also operating either under full leases to Chinese interests or partnerships. The Port of Darwin caused particular concern as it is the natural military strategic asset in a Pacific conflict. It handles the transport of fuel, equipment, and ammunition used by the US Marines and Australian troops.
Military advisors state that the Port of Darwin is the only place in northern Australia suitable for the creation of a naval base.
The Port of Newcastle is also under 50% Chinese control while the Port of Melbourne is 25%.
Chinese companies, particularly those with headquarters in Hong Kong, own other essential assets in Australia including power companies and infrastructure, water treatment facilities, a majority of Australia's gas supply in Western Australia, and over half of SA Power Network.
These investments are skewed toward green energy which, as government policy favours their enterprises, will see Australian owned energy assets diminish in favour of Chinese owned operations.
After the suspected release of Covid19 from China's Level 4 viral lab in Wuhan, relations between Australia and China have soured. The Communist nation has frequently initiated trade restrictions in retaliation for Scott Morrison's demands for a proper investigation into the outbreak.
Considering what has been put to print in the Global Times - the Communist Party's publication - it is no surprise that Japan is anxious about the fate of Taiwan.
"When Taiwan Strait hostilities do break out, Japan had better stay far away. […] If Japan attacks China in order to split up Taiwan from our country, it will surely stir up righteous national indignation and give the Chinese people an opportunity to take revenge. We must set the four islands of mainland Japan as our strategic target because our goal is the annihilation of Japan. This will be an ‘unlimited war’. We’ll use all the means of war, including tactical and strategic nuclear weapons. After defeating Japan, we must take more severe measures than after WWII, we must partition Japan to completely eliminate the root cause of war. The Japanese islands will be divided into four independent states under the administration of China and Russia, with China and Russia stationing troops there.” - Hu Xijin, the editor-in-chief at the Global Times.