Will the Taiwan-Philippines Dispute Unite Taiwan With China?

Will the Taiwan-Philippines Dispute Unite Taiwan With China?

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The skirmish between Taiwan and the Philippines could push Taipei away from the U.S. and into Beijing’s eager arms—fulfilling a long-awaited geopolitical prediction.

The Philippine Coast Guard shot and killed a Taiwanese fisherman on May 9 in waters claimed by both nations, setting off a chain of events that could mend the breech between Beijing and Taipei.

Both Taiwan and the Philippines are allies of the United States, but Washington’s ties with Manila run deeper than those it has with Taipei. However, there’s one factor of much greater importance than which side the war-weary U.S. may choose.

Enter China

Beijing is actively courting Taiwan in the dispute. In the days after the fatal shooting, China’s Global Times published articles urging the Philippines to apologize, and Taiwan recalled its envoy to the Philippines and froze all hiring of Philippine workers. Philippine President Benigno Aquino responded by sending a personal representative to Taiwan to convey “his and the Filipino people’s deep regret” to the fisherman’s family and the people of Taiwan.

Taiwan and China stood together in rejecting Manila’s apology as “insincere.”

With the rejection came several more sanctions from Taiwan against the Philippines, including a travel alert and an announcement of plans to hold military exercises in the waters where the incident went down.

China’s Global Times applauded Taiwan’s punitive measures as a “second front” for China to stand up to neighbors in territorial disputes. The paper reminded readers that, in China’s eyes, Taiwan remains a province-in-waiting, and deserves China’s protection. “China has reiterated over time that Taiwan is an integral part of China. Now is a good opportunity to show that China will not tolerate the shooting of our fishermen, whether they are from the mainland or Taiwan, and that our government is determined to protect the life of its people,” one article said.

Since Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou took office in May 2008, Taipei and Beijing have taken many steps toward greater cooperation. And now the two governments are banding together in common aggression toward the Philippines, and by proxy, toward the United States. The two sides have some opposing interests in the dispute, but by the time Taiwan realizes this—and sees that China views the ordeal primarily as a chance to pry the Island nation out of Washington’s sphere of influence and into Beijing’s—it may be too late.

For several decades the close relationship between Taiwan and the U.S. has deterred China from using military force to accomplish its goal of bringing Taiwan officially under Beijing’s rule. But the current skirmish could persuade Taiwan to sacrifice its relationship with the Manila-friendly U.S., and to instead rely on China.

Taiwan finds itself potentially crosswise with a U.S. treaty ally at the same time that it is being actively courted by Beijing,” said Scott Harold of the rand Corp. think tank. “This is in fact a far greater threat to Taipei than any dispute with Manila over fishing rights could ever possibly be.”

The China-Taiwan relationship has been moving closer for several years. This territorial dispute offers these Asian neighbors common ground that could be exploited for the unification project.

“How could anyone fail to see that Taiwan is destined to become a part of mainland China?” wrote Trumpet editor in chief Gerald Flurry back in 1998. Herbert W. Armstrong, editor in chief of the Trumpet’s predecessor, the Plain Truth, predicted Taiwan’s fate over 50 years ago. In a letter dated Sept. 19, 1958, he wrote, “Will Red China invade and capture [Taiwan]? In all probability, yes …. The Red Chinese ‘save face,’ and the United States, with many American troops now on Taiwan, will again lose face!”

The simmering Taiwan-Philippine territorial dispute may become a key step toward fulfillment of those geopolitical predictions. Such an outcome would bolster China’s ability to push in the Pacific, and persuade other Asian states to rally behind Beijing. To understand the significance of China’s rise, read “The Collapsing ‘China Fantasy.’

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Herbert W. Armstrong Visited King Leopold Expedition in New Guinea

Herbert W. Armstrong Visited King Leopold Expedition in New Guinea


Ambassador Foundation support of anthropological exploration

On March 11, 1973, the internationally recognized ambassador for world peace touched down in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta, for two days of meetings with state officials and the king of Belgium, at the site of one of the Belgian king’s historic expeditions.

Mr. Armstrong and his delegation were greeted by Indonesia’s protocol staff and Dr. Sarwono, chief of the Indonesian Educational and Scientific Institute, who had helped coordinate King Leopold’s expedition in New Guinea. In addition, awaiting them upon landing were Belgian Ambassador George Elliott, accompanied by the Belgian economic adviser.

Since his initial meeting with the king of Belgium in 1968, Mr. Armstrong ensured that Ambassador College supported cultural and humanitarian endeavors of the monarch. These were later formalized under the auspices of the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation in cooperation with the Leopold iii Foundation for the Exploration and Conservation of Nature. This collaboration was primarily centered in the fields of anthropology and exploration.

On March 12, 1973, Ambassador International Cultural Foundation officials met with longtime friend of Mr. Armstrong Indonesian Foreign Minister Adam Malik. At the time he was second in charge under President Suharto. Prior, he had served as the president of the General Assembly of the United Nations.

President Suharto was unable to join the meeting as he was addressing the National Assembly at the time. “But he sent greetings and his personal best wishes for the success of the expedition and an invitation to visit him on our next return to Indonesia” (Plain Truth, June 1973).

In the summer of 1972, the president and the unofficial ambassador met in Jakarta. So vital was the meeting that it was only a few months later that Mr. Armstrong devoted his “Personal” for the November edition of the mass-circulation Plain Truth magazine to his meeting with the leader of the world’s fifth-largest nation at the time.

Later that night, the delegation attended a banquet conducted for the king. The next day Mr. Armstrong recalled, “We flew to Biak in West Irian (New Guinea). It was a five-hour flight, at nearly 600 miles per hour. We must have flown over hundreds of islands, all part of Indonesia, many of the islands as yet uncharted” (ibid).

Upon arrival they were met by the local administrator, a general, who was accompanied by military staff assigned to guide and protect the king’s scientific expeditionary entourage. This armed escort was a necessity as the group was headed into some of the globe’s densest jungle, known to be inhabited by noted headhunters, many of whom had never interacted with foreigners.

Mr. Armstrong spent about an hour with the explorers discussing the project and posing for photographs before farewelling the king and Dr. André Capart, head of Belgium’s Royal Museum of Natural Science. The pair were to spend the night in Biak, then meet various scientists the next day at Djajapura (Jayapura), capital of Irian Jaya. From there, the expedition was to get under way.

Mr. Armstrong, whether contributing financially or with personnel via the Ambassador International Cultural Foundation, supported the anthropological study of societies and cultures. King Leopold iii’s exploration foundation was one of the first of various such humanitarian alliances contributing to the historic declaration of the message of good news as a witness to the world (Matthew 24:14).

Today, the legacy of this commitment and contribution continues through the Armstrong International Cultural Foundation. “We are an international humanitarian organization dedicated to serving the cultural and educational needs of people everywhere,” writes Chairman Gerald Flurry.

As its founder, Mr. Flurry goes on to describe its goals and activities, which first recognize “man is a unique being, possessing vast mental, physical and spiritual potentials—the development of which should be aided and encouraged.” Secondly, “that it is the responsibility of all men to attend to and care for the needs of their fellow men.”

These objectives are aptly summed up by the Apostle James, whose canonized words exhort, “If ye fulfill the royal law according to the scripture, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself, ye do well” (James 2:8).

For more information and to find out how you can support this philanthropic quest, download our foundation prospectus.

What Guttenberg Started, de Maiziere Finishes

What Guttenberg Started, de Maiziere Finishes

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The changes in military force structure introduced by Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg are now being embraced as German government policy.

During his term as Germany’s defense minister, Karl-Theodor zu Guttenberg introduced the concept of radical change of Germany’s military force. Most controversial of all was his doing away with conscription—the traditional way of providing Germany with a defensive army since rearmament under the Western Allies’ approval following World War ii—and its replacement by an entirely professional outfit of volunteer soldiery.

The idea met with a lot of criticism during Guttenberg’s term in office. Yet now it is being embraced, along with other Guttenberg initiatives, as binding federal government policy.

Recently a rash of reports commissioned by the German government and the European Union have been publicized, all geared toward recommendations of leaner, meaner, better coordinated and consolidated European military forces and defense industries.

The emphasis is on a “high tech” approach to defense. Cyberwarfare, death rays capable of massive destruction, and cutting-edge developments in munitions have all been on the table for discussion by both German and EU defense experts in the process of producing these reports, published over the past few weeks.

Today, the combined military forces of EU nations make the European Union as an entity the second-greatest military power on Earth. It goes without saying that the strongest military power today within the EU is Germany. Thus it is axiomatic that any strength of leadership in a consolidated EU military will be Germanic.

Germany has come a long way since playing second fiddle to the U.S. in European defense both preceding and following unification, up to now.

But now, with U.S. defense focusing away from Europe and its periphery to concentrate on the Far East, Germany, followed by the EU, is picking up the ball for defense outside the European continental perimeter and increasingly focusing on the nations to its south and east.

“The time of planning, guidelines and draft projects is over,” declares the most recent report on the Bundeswehr. “The time has come to change the German military, the report said” (Deutsche Welle, May 16).

DW further states that “The reform of the German military is the most radical overhaul of the Bundeswehr in its history. … A new field will be a division for strategic intelligence (ksa) to launch attacks via the Internet. The Bundeswehr would thus be able to join the cyberwar with computer worms and viruses.”

The recommended new force structure for the Bundeswehr is for “troops ready for rapid intervention missions led by nato or the EU” and for highly professional units able to be launched at short notice as part of EU expeditionary forces (ibid).

These recommendations dovetail neatly with similar recommendations made in the recently released report for overhaul of all EU military forces put forward by the European Institute for Security Studies, commissioned by the chairman of the EU Military Committee.

Those opposing the mooted radical changes in Germany’s defense posture claim that “the overhaul of the troops as they see it [is] a move away from a defensive to an intervention army” (ibid).

They are right.

We have waited for the past 20 years, since German reunification, for the wolf to bare its teeth. Now the wraps are off, and the true nature of German militarism is speedily arising for a third time in a century.

The report indicates that “Barring changes to the national security situation, the Bundeswehr restructuring is to be completed by 2017” (ibid).

The risk is that, amid the continuing euro crisis, “changes to the national security situation” could result in this timetable being rapidly speeded up, rather than slowed down.

The overall emphasis in both the EU report and the report on the Bundeswehr is that officially the deployment of their forces beyond the European sphere is to be billed as “peace keeping” initiatives.

The grave danger in describing overt military missions as such is bound up in one singular prophecy for our times: “For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction comes upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.”

Read our booklets Germany and the Holy Roman Empire and Germany’s Conquest of the Balkans for more insight on this subject.

Iran Chairs the UN Conference on Disarmament

Iran Chairs the UN Conference on Disarmament

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The United Nations reaches a new level of absurdity with the appointment of Iran over the disarmament conference.

Beginning on May 27 and lasting until June 23, Iran will chair the UN conference on disarmament. Yes, the UN’s most important disarming forum will be led by one of the world’s greatest threats to nuclear warfare. The ridiculous situation shows the ineffectiveness of the United Nations in preventing the spread of nuclear armaments.

While the position that Iran will occupy is largely ceremonial, it is also a very prominent position that some of Iran’s opponents, such as the United States, would rather see filled by a less confrontational nation. The U.S. plans to boycott any talks that are led by Iran in the meetings to be held in Geneva.

It isn’t the first time a belligerent nation such as Iran has filled the position. In the summer of 2011, North Korea chaired the conference. The reason for these appointments is that there is an automatic rotation system.

Iran will take the seat at a time when the U.S. is accusing the Persian nation of stalling talks designed to halt its aggressive nuclear program. While Iran says it is willing to talk, there has been little evidence of a breakthrough that would lead to Iran giving up its nuclear ambitions.

Now Iran has been provided with another opportunity to flaunt itself as pro-disarmament by chairing the UN conference on disarmament.

“When the United Nations imposes four rounds of sanctions on Iran for illicit nuclear activities, condemns it for illegally arming the murderous Syrian regime, and denounces Tehran’s massive abuse of human rights, this kind of appointment just defies common sense and harms the UN’s credibility,” said Hillel Neuer, the executive director of UN Watch.

The UN was established as man’s attempt to bring peace and stability to the Earth. When a violent nation such as Iran is allowed to lead a conference on disarmament, it is a clear indication that the UN is failing in its objectives.

Herbert W. Armstrong was in attendance when the UN was established, and at that time he prophesied of the ultimate demise of the organization. Mr. Armstrong said, “I see the clouds of World War iii gathering at this conference. … I do not see peace being germinated here, but the seeds of the next war! … The United Nations conference is producing nothing but strife and bickering, and is destined from its inception to end in total failure. Yet world leaders are pronouncing it the world’s last hope—with the only alternative annihilation of humanity!”

The danger of Iran’s nuclear ambitions cannot be overstated, nor the UN’s inability to change the situation. Read “The Return of the Mahdi Is Nigh” to more deeply understand why the UN is unable to stop Iran in its quest for the nuclear bomb.

Matthew 24 Unlocks the Seven Seals

In Matthew 24, Christ unlocks the meaning of the seals of Revelation. The first four seals are also known as the four horsemen of the apocalypse. Do you understand the meaning of the seven seals of Revelation?