This and the coming week are somewhat busier than originally expected, and I’m also spending some of my time on listening to the news on shortwave, rather than reading online.
But here are some articles and documents I’ve browsed this week…
1. Financial Stability in China: IMF Recommendations
An IMF Financial System Stability Assessment of China, published this month. It’s not as dramatic as some news stories of the past few weeks would suggest, but it describes several near-term risks for China’s financial sector, and recommends a properly composed and timely implemented set of reforms.
2. Will Business in the Asia-Pacific earn America the Means for a Sustainable Military Presence?
Then there’s U.S. president Barack Obama‘s visit to Australia, and the agreement over American access to Australian military bases, and a major enhancement of military cooperation. An article by Raoul Heinrichs, published by The Diplomat , lists three reasons as to why this makes sense for Washington. And an editorial, also in The Diplomat, suggests that an elimination of U.S. military alliances with countries around the region is not likely to happen.
Headlines from the opposite side of this planet are somewhat unusual in the German media, but news magazine Der Spiegel put the military agreement to the top of its online edition last night.
In Canberra, Obama expressed a hope – that the Asia Pacific would play a critical role in creating jobs and opportunity for the American people -, and made a promise (or threat – mark the expression that describes his statement best to you with a cross, King Tubby), or anyone:
As we end today’s wars, I have directed my national security team to make our presence and mission in the Asia Pacific a top priority. As a result, reductions in U.S. defense spending will not — I repeat, will not — come at the expense of the Asia Pacific.
In short, while American military power is there to stay in the Asia-Pacific region, and much of America’s economic strength as the foundation of [American]leadership in the world, including [..] in the Asia Pacific, is to be earned right in that region.
3. Paul V. Kane’s Op-Ed on Taiwan was Just “Swiftian Satire”
Obviously, not every op-ed will make sense, not even when published by the New York Times. Thomas Friedman can be very Swiftian, too, with stuff like, essentially, let’s send China the blue-prints and let them pay for those, and we’ll buy cheap high-tech products from them.