Tag Archives | China

US Navy Official Says China Is Preparing for War With Japan

240px-Kitakojima_and_Minamikojima_of_Senkaku_Islands

Pic: “National Land Image Information (Color Aerial Photographs), Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism”. (PD)

Well. This isn’t good. Needless to say, the Pentagon isn’t happy about the Captain’s public remarks, but that doesn’t make them any less likely to be true. China and Japan have been squabbling over the islands for over a hundred years now.

Via NPR:

China is stepping up war games in preparation for a possible conflict with Japan over the Senkaku/Diaoyu Islands, a tiny island chain in the East China Sea claimed by both Beijing and Tokyo, a senior U.S. Navy official says.

Captain James Fanell, deputy chief of staff intelligence and information operations for the U.S. Pacific Fleet, made the remark in San Diego last week.

Fanell said that after witnessing China’s Mission Action 2013, a “massive amphibious and cross military” exercise that included ground and naval forces of the People’s Liberation Army, U.S.

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Strange Ball Lightning Caught on High-Speed Video

English: Some scientific groups, including the...

Some scientific groups, including the Max Planck Institute, have reportedly produced a ball lightning-type effect by discharging a high-voltage capacitor in a tank of water. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Chinese scientists gain new information on ball lightning from a chance recording.

via Live Science

A video recorded by accident of ball lightning in China is now shedding light on the phenomenon’s mysterious origins, researchers say.

Ball lightning occurs as glowing spheres ranging in size from a golf ball to a very large beach ball (1 to 100 centimeters, or 0.4 inches to 39 inches, in diameter). These fiery orbs can be white, yellow, red, orange, purple or green, and can persist for seconds or even minutes. Ball lightning typically appears during thunderstorms and usually hovers near the ground, drifting over the Earth at a few miles per hour, but it has also been seen on ships and even within airplanes.

Over the centuries, people have reported thousands of sightings of ball lightning.

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Inside China’s Internet Addiction Rehab Camps

internet addictionThe New York Times has a short film exploring life inside one of China's hundreds of boot-camp-style treatment centers for electronics-addled youth who spend night and day gaming online, in some cases allegedly wearing diapers to avoid taking bathroom breaks. The camp director compares the internet to "electronic heroin" and warns that the teens "know the internet inside and out, but nothing about human beings." Questions abound: Is China at the forefront of what will become a global epidemic of Compulsive Internet Use? Are computers being scapegoated for problems that are in fact more subtle and complex? Could you survive several months cold turkey?
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TROTSKY IN CHINA: How Communism’s Most Controversial Theorist Found An Audience – In China

Pic: Trotsky (PD)

Pic: Trotsky (PD)

This article breaks down how books by Leon Trotsky supported the Chinese ideological shift away from soviet Communism.

via News China

Trotsky’s Views was openly published in China in 1980, two years after the country embarked on its ongoing experiment with Reform and Opening-up, and 40 years after Leon Trotsky, who remains one of the world’s most contentious political thinkers, was assassinated.

Its predecessor was Excerpts of Trotsky’s Reactionary Views, compiled by the Central Compilation and Translation Bureau and printed by the People’s Press, as one of the “Gray Cover” books issued to a limited number of Party cadres in 1964.

 Gray Cover books were classified into three categories. Category C included books by such European socialist thinkers as Alexandre Millerand of France and Otto Bauer of Austria who attempted revisions to perceived orthodox Marxism. These were generally available to Party functionaries, though banned from public sale.

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Bitcoin RIP?

RIP Bitcoin

Public radio says the much-touted virtual currency is on the way out. Want to bet?

Via NPR:

“Prices of virtual currency bitcoin fell 20% Wednesday and are now down more than 50% from their record high hit two weeks ago amid worries that China is moving to block the purchase and use of the currency by its citizens,” .

Bitcoin’s big slide began two weeks ago, , when Chinese authorities told banks there that they couldn’t trade in the currency. Officials were worried, NPR’s Frank Langfitt reported, about a lack of control over bitcoins that “makes it easier to launder money and finance terrorism.”

Wednesday, , “BTC China, the biggest bitcoin exchange in that country,” announced it has “temporarily stopped” accepting yuan deposits into bitcoin accounts. The news followed reports that “the People’s Bank of China had a meeting on Monday with about 10 major third-party payment processors and ordered them to stop working with bitcoin exchanges.”

The result: “On Wednesday, bitcoin prices fell another 20 percent to $550.02, down more than 50% from its high of $1,147.25 two weeks ago,” the Journal says.

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Chinese Doctors Temporarily Attach Man’s Hand To His Foot

Screen Shot 2013-12-17 at 9.38.15 AMKind of gruesome, but I guess you have to give the doctors a hand for thinking quick on their feet.

Via Newser:

Fast-thinking doctors in China are trying to save a man’s severed hand by temporarily reattaching it to his foot, the Daily Mail reports. Xiao Wei cut off his hand in a work accident early last month, leaving him “shocked and frozen on the spot,” he said, “until co-workers unplugged the machine and retrieved my hand and took me to the hospital.” Local doctors couldn’t help, so he went to a regional facility where experts gave him a second look. “I am still young, and I couldn’t imagine life without a right hand,” Wei said.

Doctors attached the hand to his ankle to keep it alive until they can perform a proper surgery.

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Chinese Spy Busted Stealing Iowa Corn Seeds

roflbot(5)A couple of weeks ago we a had a virtual currency heist, now we’ve got Chinese biotech espionage in the middle of Iowa. Man, this world gets a little more cyberpunk with every passing day. I wonder if Google Glass comes in a mirrorshade edition?

Newser:

Federal agents caught an alleged Chinese spy last week trying to smuggle highly valuable “inbred” cord seeds out of the country, prosecutors say. Mo Hailong is accused of stealing the seeds from fields in Illinois and Iowa and trying to evade FBI agents after dropping off seeds at a rented storage facility, reports the Des Moines Register. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a $5 million fine for stealing trade secrets worth up to $40 million. What’s the big deal? Inbred seeds possess certain special qualities, like resistance to droughts or pests, reports the Smithsonian.

“It’s really the foundation for Iowa agriculture, so it’s really something that we need to protect,” says an Iowa professor.

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Chinese Moon Landing

Rendering of the Chang'e 3 lander and rover, credited to the Beijing Institute of Spacecraft System Engineering

Rendering of the Chang’e 3 lander and rover, credited to the Beijing Institute of Spacecraft System Engineering

Calling all moon landing conspiracy theorists: did China really just make the first landing on the Moon in four decades? Or ever? AP reports on China’s lunar beachhead:

China on Saturday successfully carried out the world’s first soft landing of a space probe on the moon in nearly four decades, state media said, the next stage in an ambitious space program that aims to eventually put a Chinese astronaut on the moon.

The unmanned Chang’e 3 lander, named after a mythical Chinese goddess of the moon, touched down on Earth’s nearest neighbor following a 12-minute landing process.

The probe carried a six-wheeled moon rover called “Yutu,” or “Jade Rabbit,” the goddess’ pet. After landing Saturday evening on a fairly flat, Earth-facing part of the moon, the rover was slated to separate from the Chang’e eight hours later and embark on a three-month scientific exploration.

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Chinese Man Commits Suicide At Mall After Girlfriend Refuses To Stop Shopping

deadDeath by overwhelming and inescapable consumerism? Via Gawker:

A man who was fed up with his girlfriend’s incessant Christmas shopping responded to her request for one more look around a mall shoe store by leaping seven floors to his death.

The 38-year-old, identified as Tao Hsiao, had been shopping with his girlfriend at the Golden Eagle International Shopping Center in Xuzhou, China, when she asked to check out one last shoe store.

Having been inside the mall for five hours, Tao had reached his limit, and reportedly insisted that they leave immediately. “He told her she already had enough shoes, more shoes that she could wear in a lifetime and it was pointless buying any more,” an eyewitness was quoted as saying.

Surveillance footage shows Tao angrily hurling the shopping bags and jumping over the railing onto the cosmetics section below. A spokesman for the shopping center says that the man died instantly upon impact.

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UK and China Agree £45m Pig Semen Export Deal

giphyIt’s been a big week for pigs. First it has been revealed that humans could be descended from a pig and chimpanzee hybrid, like some kind of Kool Keith creation. Now there’s this.

via The Guardian

Britain has won the right to export pig semen to China in a deal worth £45m a year.

Owen Paterson, the environment secretary, who is accompanying David Cameron on his trip to China, has also embarked on negotiations to export pigs’ trotters – a local delicacy – to China.

Under the deal with China, the “porcine semen” can be flown to the country in frozen and fresh form. Pigs will not be flyingbut their seed will take to the air.

A No 10 spokesperson said: “We’re doing all we can to ensure that businesses up and down the country reap the rewards from our relationship with China. And that includes our pig farmers. This new deal to export pig semen will be worth £45m to UK firms and means Britain’s best pigs will help sustain the largest pig population in the world.

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