Donald Trump isn’t even in office yet, and his Russian-puppet Secretary of State nominee Rex Tillerson hasn’t even been confirmed yet, but they’ve taken such aggressive military posture toward China that the Chinese government is now firing back and threatening military action of its own. And the reason for this sudden escalation into what sounds a lot like World War III against one of our own biggest economic allies? Some artificial islands that no one really cares about.
China has built three artificial islands in the South China Sea, in a stretch of waterway which it claims as part of its territory to begin with. And now, for reasons known only to him, Tillerson (best known for being portrayed by John Goodman on SNL) is using his Senate confirmation hearings — where he’s supposed to be demonstrating his ability to act in a diplomatic manner consistent with the Secretary of State position for which he’s been nominated — to try to start a military conflict. Not only does Trump’s nominee want to bar China from building any more islands, he’s proposing barring China from accessing the three islands that it has. This is not sitting well with China.
The government of China, which typically speaks through the ‘news’ publications that it controls, said the following through the Global Times: “If Trump’s diplomatic team shapes future Sino-U.S. ties as it is doing now, the two sides had better prepare for a military clash.” It also went on to say that Tillerson’s provocations are “a mishmash of naivety, shortsightedness, worn-out prejudices, and unrealistic political fantasies. Should he act on them in the real world, it would be disastrous [and] set a course for devastating confrontation between China and the U.S.”
So yeah, we’re all going to die.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report