CHINA INVADING AUSTRALIA....... The new Tasmania senator, Jackie Lambie who is a member of Clive Palmer's alliance group has, in her support of Clive Palmer, claimed that China would invade Australia. This has created many interesting discussions in the media and average people.

1) Clive Palmer is an enigma in my assessment. He is clearly an intelligent person and his arguments are generally sound with or without agreeing his premises in the first place. He is quick no doubt. He also seems to have good social conscience and understands that hard work is not always necessary enough for people to improve themselves. He is clearly accepting that luck does count in many situations.

2) Clive Palmer also seems, on the other hand, quick to make comments that are rather unwise. With his quick fire on the Chinese and Chinese system on ABC TV Q&A on Monday, certainly many have now see China in a more curious way. His Tasmania senator jumped into it and made even a more direct accusation of China's intentions for Australia.

3) Perhaps both the senator and Clive Palmer were just losing their control when they made such statements. Senator Lambie from Tasmania has somehow now said that Indonesia is also a threat. But let us not worry about that. Let us focus on China.

4) Before I start, perhaps most readers have not read much about China and Chinese history. And those that have read about Chinese history, have they noticed one thing about the authors of the books-publicaitons on Chinese history that western people tend to come across? The authors are inevitably westerners. Historians that grow up reading about Western-Europen history and see and try to understand China and Chinese history using Western-European experiences. This lies the whole problem with how the west see China.

5) What's European experiences of themselves? WAR is the only word to describe it. In a region that is not much larger than Australia, there are over 25 nations. Let us not worry about Russia and former Soviet Union states at all.

6) 25 nations in a place not much larger than Australia. Think about this. When Bejlke-Petersen was the premier of Queensland, he was at one stage talking about QLD’s secession from Australia. He was a New Zealander by birth and he could trace his root to Europe only less than 50 years before. He would have heard about and read about European history that told him that small nations could be fine in a large continent. And he would have read about wars in Europe. And I would bet he would not mind having war between Queensland against the rest of Australia one day.

7) This is the whole issue with how the western people in general see their own history and China as a result. Western history is mostly European history. Every European kid is taught not just history of their own nation but that of their neighbours and Europe as a whole. US and Australia plus Canada-NZ also teach European history mostly to their kids. Indeed, most politicians and military leaders in the west have read nothing but European history and their own. Anything they read about China, again, would more than likely have been written by westerners given their own understanding of European history. And any conclusions would be biased as a result. No wonder you hear so called western Chinese historians and western Chinese experts invariably would say that China would pose some threats to the west. Even Kevin Rudd clearly has this sentiment.

8) So what's in European history that is starkly different and fundamentally so from that of Chinese experiences? 25 nations vs one entity in more or less the same land mass. Simple. The numbers of wars in the two regions.

9) Let us count the number of wars in Europe since Napoleon time about 200 years. More than 50 different wars? How many in China over the same period? 5 if that?

10) One major rebellion in the mid to late 1800's. Japan fought China in 1894. The warlords period for about 15 years after the demise of the last imperial dynasty. Japan invaded North East China (north of Korea) in 1930. Japan invaded China proper in 1937. The Chinese communist fought against the central government before WW Two. And second Chinese communist war against the central government before they took over China.

11) And then there were the gunboat wars instigated by the numerous European and US against China to force China to trade with Europeans such as allowing the Brits and Americans to sell their opium from British India to China. These wars were small scale and were never started by China.

12) Indeed how many wars China had started in the last 200 years that are against other nations ? Not one single one. Not one. How many each of the European nations have done so when they did not need to.

13) Great Britain did not need to fight in both WW. Certainly for WW One, Britain had no needs at all. And Britain sent in her gun boats to force China to continue to accept opium trades from the British merchants when the Chinese government had asked them to stop. Yes, folks, the entire British Empire and British government as well as Queen Victoria had been nothing but literally DRUG PUSHERS. Hong Kong was ceded to Britain so as allowing the drug pushers like the Jardine Methson group to prosper and become one of the most influential taipans in Hong Kong even till today. No wonder when Jardine Matheson group tried to take on the Chinese government, with the encouragement of the last governor of Hong Kong- Chris Patton who happened to be a confidant of Maggie Thatcher, before the 1997 handover of Hong Kong. The Chinese government made it clear that everything that group did from then on would be scrutinised. None of its property developments could be done by its own since as stipulated by the Chinese government. This way its property holdings in China would be diluted bi by bit. No wonder Jardine Metheson group of companies including Dairy Farm that once owned Franklins in Australia took their corporate registration to the West Indies and transferred their share listing to Singapore. Well, if you had got your money from drug pushing in the first place, you ought to be careful with how you make your public stance on government policies. Other firms are more wiser and zip up and the Chinese government lets them be as usual. HSBC, when offered to buy Midland Bank of UK, their chairman and CEO at the time flew to Beijing to ask for blessing as John Major wanted the HSBC HQ moved to London and half of its shares to be traded in London for the deal. No wonder HSBC has been the very first non-Chinese banks to be allowed to operate a BRANCH in China. A branch operation set up in another nation is a very difficult thing to get- much more so than a subsidiary.

14) This is the trouble with European perception and hence that of the west in general about their own history and how they see the rest of the world. Jardine Matheson group believed that it, among others, had successfully pushed the British government to help it to push opium into China with gun boats, it believes that the history of Europe could be used to have a go at China- meaning wishing to incite a war again. European history is full of wars as there are too many nations in a region that is not much larger than Australia and US. No wonder there are wars all over it history.

15) I also would say one thing about US. Her greatness has been built on one thing and one thing only- thus far.. Hardly any wars on the US soil for her entire history. US is one nation. Canada too also is blessed with no war on her soil more or less. If US and Canada had several nations within each, I can assure you there would be at least 10 major wars in the last 400 years. After all, the French and the English did fight for the control of Canada before the US revolution and afterwards. 2 nations as it were in Canada and there were wars for over a century.

16) You take the Roman Empire itself in the first place. Its structure was more or less military one. Most Roman emperors and counsels were military people. Why? The way the Roman empire dealt with their own people and their concurred provinces and client states simply created this.

17) You see the Romans took all of Italy at the wake of the first Punic war (against Hannibal of the elephants crossing the Alp fan) in 190BC. But it was not till about 100 years later, did the Romans gave the rest population of Italy proper citizenship. Even Carthage which the Roman defeated and brought in as a direct province in about 140~150BC in the second Punic War did not get their citizenship till almost 100 years later too. It was not for another 50 years did they have anyone from the former Carthage that was in the senate.

18) When you treated your own conquered people like, literally, second class citizens, of course you would be fighting the revolts all the time. No wonder almost all Roman emperors were military men. They had to simple. On the other hand, most Chinese emperors, besides the founding emperors of different dynasties, were not military men at all. Indeed, all serious historians would agree that the Roman Empire was a military one whereas Chinese Empire had been a civic structure.

19) What made it worse is the fact the after the fall of the Roman Empire, whole Europe simply went into fragmented segments of small dukedoms, kingdoms, and more or less warlord-controlled territories. Even England and Scotland had not strong central government till William the Conqueror arrived in 1066 and when Scotland was brought into the union by the fact that James of Scotland became James I of England too after Queen Elizabeth I.

20) For the rest of continental Europe, of course each of small local lords had this feudal system whereby they could control more or less everything happening in their regions. They imposed their own legal system, their own tax regimes, and worst of all their own military power. Yes, small region such as the size of Sydney would have their own military independent from say that of Central Coast or Newcastle. So what have you got? Wars and wars and more wards between neighbours and against different alliances of other regions. In Germany which did not exist at all till 1867, there were slime over 300 independent kingdoms and whatever when Napoleon tried to conquer Europe. 300 in Germany.... No wonder there are so many people with the surname pre-fix VON in Germany. It took the Prussians over 200 years to take over whole of Germany creating the attitude of military conquest successes. This then explained why Germany started both WW Two in the 20th century. The corporate memory of the whole nation had been based on Prussian conquest of all Germany. So why not took on other nations too?

21) You see, most have heard of the First Emperor of China that unified all China. The fact is this, he was not the first ever conqueror of all China in the old days. There had been a few before him. But all before him did what the Roman did. They did not rule directly at all. The bulk of the lands were given away as small kingdoms-dukedoms to minor sons or sons-in-laws or high ranking generals-minsters. Superficially, there was the emperor of sort but he had no real power within 2 generations. Certainly after less than 100 years, all the emperors could not take back the rest of China at all whatsoever as the more or less independent kingdoms and dukedoms were so powerful militarily separately or in different alliances.

22) So China was at war within herself regularly. Different kingdoms and dukedoms were forming alliances to try to take on or reduce the influences of another kingdoms-dukedomes. This was and is exactly what the European nations like UK, France, Germany, Italy have been doing for centuries. What the first emperor of China did in 221BC was that he no longer would create small kingdoms or dukedoms for his minor sons and top generals and prime minsters. Indeed, one of his ancestors some 130~150 years earlier had a prime minister that changed such awarding of lands to high ranking officers and generals and stopped them forming their own militia to challenge the central government. He only found out this was possible when he was awarded his own huge tract of land (a county in size) and he could have his own militia and he was horrified by that system. So he put a stop to it and disbanded his own militia and even gave away his palaces that came with his high honour to public uses as administration centres, education facilities, public libraries and warehouses for emergency supplies. Of course he angered many self-interests and got hunted down after his own king that had supported him for over 20 years died. But he was right all along.

23) You see from 221 BC, more or less all dynasties in China had copied what was done in 221 BC. The second dynasty, the Han dynasty, tried to go back to the old way. But soon, they realised it was a mistake. It took them about 50 years to rid of it and cemented the centralised control. That dynasty lasted for exact 400 years. The stability of the empire had been greatly enhanced by the fact that there was a centralised control and there was not fragmentation in a land or military even as large as China proper. BTW, China proper was the region of China that the Han ethnic group live more or less. This would be without the current north east of China north of Korea, without Tibet or XinJiang. And some would say not include parts of the current southern China too. This whole land mass would be not much smaller than Western Europe and Central Europe combined. Look again how many nations in Western Europe and Central Europe today. 20 of them? 20 of course they would have wars against one another regularly.

24) China had experienced such warring situations that Europeans have gone through and will continue. In Chinese history, it is literally called Warring State. Before that it's called Spring and Fall due to the title of the historical book describing the period. Both Spring and Fall and Warring States periods saw numerous wars among different kingdoms and dukedoms in China. Every year there would be at least one war and at least one battle somewhere in China and the two periods lasted over 500 years. Yes, 500 years of continuing war fare in China.

25) Just like the Europeans today that do not really trust their own neighbouring nations, Chinese kingdoms and dukedoms did not believe their neighbours would ever be trusted. The SIEGE MENTALITY that the European nations and west in general now carry indeed is nothing but the progeny of this long history of wars in Europe and the fact that there are too many nations in Europe. Too many nations is the main problem and the ONLY CAUSE for this siege mentality and the wars that have caused huge suffering among the Europeans and the westerners in general.

26) China and Chinese kingdoms and dukedoms for 500 years were like the Europeans and they fought one another or as groups. It was not till 221BC did the whole thing stop more or less for good. And from that time, you could see the differences between China and Europe and the differences in how China and how the Europeans and hence the west in general deal with other nations. The starting points are totally different. Think about this. 221BC was around the time the Romans was fighting Hannibal and the Romans used this opportunity to conquest all of Italy. But the Romans treated their people not the same way as the Chinese. The Romans demanded proof of contributions to award citizenship, but the first Chinese emperor simply granted everyone citizenship when he conquered all of China. No conditions and no proofs of one's contributions to the empire that Rome demanded of her people.

27) China for centuries since 221BC did not see wars except some revolts some of which led to the changes of dynasties. But over all, China has been fine as long as there is no external invasions. Indeed, the last dynasty was led by the Manchu who is 5% of ethnic make up of Chinese people. Different groups of Manchu over the centuries had design for China and indeed they had occupied parts of northern China near Beijing and surrendering provinces a few times before 1644 when they finally took over all China (well another 30 years later as it took them 30 years to take the southern China properly).

28) The Mongols of course have wanted China since who know when. Thousands of incursions forced the constructions of the Great Wall of China. That structure, BTW, was not first built by the first emperor of China. Before him all kingdoms and dukedoms with lands next to the Mongols had their own wall defences against the Mongols. He simply linked them up properly.

29) However, the Mongols never succeeded till Genghis Khan unified the tribes of the Mongols to create a potent enough force to make successful conquest of China. Yes, folks, another point from the lesson of Genghis Khan. A region could only stop internal warring and have influences over others afterwards. European nations are now under some control of the Americans for simple reasons that they are too many and they could not agree so a large nation like US which has similar cultures would then assert significant influences. That is European nations certainly would have been better off without Us were they unified as one single entity.

30) Back to the Mongols as it also offers a wonderful historical comparisons and similarity to that of the rise of Islam in the 7th~8th centuries and, indeed, how the chaos in Iraq (the ISIS horror going on there.)

31) The Mongols were horse people. They rode their ponies and they roamed large tracts of lands. Siberia was an easy target. So was the Central Asia. And you then ask why the Islamic forces were so fast in spreading from the Arabic peninsula to Spain and even southern France in 700's AD (in just over 100 years since its foundation). It even went all the way to Central Asia and defeated the then Chinese Tang Dynasty somewhere in Central Asia. Thankfully their win was at heavy cost so it stopped their eastern advances.

32) So why is that the Islamic forces had and have in common with the Mongols? Horses and hence mobility. Secondly and this is even more important. Lack of large population centres in Siberia, Central Asian, Russia, the Middle East, the North Africa. That would explain why even today it's easy to conquer lands in the Middle East.

33) Take how Napoleon was able to reach Moscow in less than 6 months before he turned back when the winter arrived. Take how the Nazi forces were able to take over most of Russia west of Moscow within 3 months. Well, not many large towns and cities in between. The Nazi, btw, never was able to take St Petersburgh and Volgograd at all as both had large populations.

34) Yes, folks, the 'greatness' of the Mongols, the Islamic forces, Napoleon and the Nazi were somehow not all of their own doings. No large towns and cities to counter them and to slow down their advances and to reduce their potency. Of course they could have easy ride as it were. Gee, how I would love to drive a panzer tank at 50km/hr across the flatland of western Russia? I would be a hero but only the land give me the freedom of roaming so fast.

35) No wonder, Genghis Khan only himself took northern China where it is more or less flat for most part. It was not one of his grandsons, Kublah Khan that actually took the rest of China after he learned how to fight on the mountains and in the valleys of southern China. Less than 90 years later, when the Chinese Han people revolted in the south, the Mongols gave up quickly as they just were nothing but horse warriors and ineffective in the south. BTW, the population in Southern China boomed just before the Mongols took over China. Some said it's due to the end of the mini ice age at around 1,000 AD after 100 years. So is global cooling then warming a modern phenomenon, folks?

36) For those Aussies that do not want more people in this country and do not want more towns and cities to be created, they should look into historical examples. For the politicians that do not want to spend money on infrastructures such as high speed rail to spread the population away from the capital cities that would facilitate the developments of coastal centres and some selected inland towns, they have to read their history again.

37) Back to China. Think about this. If China wanted to take over Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos, Burma, etc, would it not have been easy for some of the dynasties to do so already?

38) In the Tang dynasty time (600’s AD to early 900’s AD), the Korean people had 3 kingdoms I believe. They were fighting for the supremacy of the peninsular. So the traditional leader of the 3 saw themselves losing control, they asked the Chinese to send in army to quell the rebellions caused by the other 2. However, the Chinese army never stayed at all. Indeed there was hardly any battle as the size of the Chinese army more or less made such impressions that the 2 ambitious kingdoms simply backed down. The Korean kids have apparently been taught it was a Chinese invasion. But they should perhaps ask why was that China did not just take over Korea in one go which she easily could have at the time. Even today, China could do that. But no Korean historians could say that there had ever been Chinese occupation at all.

39) Vietnam in early 1980's fought a war against China when the Vietnamese tried to push north over a disputed border line somewhere. Within 2 weeks China pushed back the Vietnamese army. Keep this in mind, the Chinese army had not fought any war since the Korean War (there was some bombardment with the India in a short war in regard to Kashmir and again the Indian lost and stopped quickly) while the Vietnamese had 3 decades of war experiences. And yet, the Vietnamese got kicked in the backside. If China wanted too, would it not be easy just to go all the way? China did not and stopped at the original border.

40) BTW, anyone that has been to Vietnam would notice the large number of ethnic Chinese. Many would have visited the old imperial capital of Vietnam in Hui. If you do, you would notice all the old buildings have old writings on them. All of these old writings are in Chinese. Yes Chinese was the official written language till about 1890's when the French arrived.

41) Why do Vietnam have this Chinese heritage? And indeed why Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Burma have such high number of ethnic Chinese living there? Well, history back to the first emperor of China in about 220BC. At that time, the natives of current Indo-China were doing to southern China what the Mongols did to northern China since who knows when. So the first emperor sent 500,000 of his troops (about half of the empire's military) to quell the Indo-Chinese people in those days and those in the regions in deep south of China.

42) When the first emperor died and the chaos quickly ensued, the general in charge of the army in the south in Indo-China decided that he would not take his huge force back to China. Why? It would have taken a few years to go back as a whole- he would have to fight rear-guard actions all the way. They would have lost a large number of them in the process as the transports were bad in not easy terrains at all. So half of the empire's military was locked away in deep southern China and Vietnam and parts of Laos-Cambodia and all the way to parts of Thailand. Another 200,000 were busy defending against possible Mongol incursions. Another 200,000 were linking up segments of the Great Wall. That left about 100,000 all over the rest of the empire with not even 10,000 near the capital. So the revolts were able to take advantage of this hiatus. This in many ways contributed to the fast fall of the first dynastic empire. The lesson for USA in this. If US is busy fighting wars elsewhere in the world with most of its military away from home, internal revolts that gather momentum could easily topple US government. If I were an ambitious American nut, I would hope for wars outside US to wait for such opportunity. My bet some state governor with his national guard still in his state would be such potential revolt leader in USA.

43) That explains why in Indo-China there is a huge ethnic Chinese present. But the point is this. If China wanted to, China could have taken over whole of Indo-China long ago and Korea for that matter. But ask yourself why China had not?

44) The other and the main reason for the Chinese not to invade other nations nearby or far afield is simply this. And this is very important. Why do you want to invade other’s land when in a war, you as the large nation has more to lose than what you may gain. Or conversely, a small nation has more to gain from a war than what they could lose especially if they are poor in the first place.

45) Think about this last point for a while. That assertion makes sense. It’s like a wealthy person becomes more conservative in their dealings with many business proposals or money making schemes as they have a bit to lose. For poor people, they are more willing to punt on most business ventures even dubious types. It also would explain why even those very poor are happy to gamble more than those well off. The poor may lose but if they win what they win would be far more significant in comparison to the miserly bits that they have.

46) So why would China want to go to wars when there is no need? And look at the small nations that otherwise are envious of others? All of the European nations. UK, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Sweden, Poland, Hungary, Portugal, Austria etc etc are all small by China standard. That is why they have had wars against one another since who know when. They simply are more willing to fight in wars to gain this and that than what they might have lost. That is why, in the 16th~19th centuries more or less all of them were taking lands in Africa, the Middle East and even Asia in addition to Americas. Their own backyards are small so they saw opportunities to wage wars against others with less sophisticated weapons and less advanced technologies to rule over them.

47) Indeed, China was one such victim of small European nations wanting to go to wars against larger nations knowing that they have more to gain than otherwise. With their superior technologies and weapons, all Europeans have tried and did grab lands or ports to control in various parts of China in the 100 years from mid 1800’s to just before WW Two.

48) You may ask how about Russia? Well, Russia is now huge no doubt. But Russia in the early 1700’s was no where as large. In the 1500’s, they did kick out the Mongols finally. But their influences and lands did not go beyond the Ural Mountains or anywhere near the Black Sea at all. So as a whole, Russia before early 1700 was not that large. It looks large on paper but most of the lands are so north that they actually are smaller than they look on the map.

49) So Russia adopted the same small nation attitude. They expanded southwards and eastwards. They took southern Ukraine and Crimea in the war against the Ottoman during the rein of Catherine the Great. Yes, folks that read this should understand that Ukrainians themselves had not taken Crimea themselves. It was the Russians that did it. Nor was most of southern Ukraine today.

50) Russia expanded eastwards and in 1860’s they took a big chunk of eastern Siberia from China. In 1880’s, they took the lands that gave them access to the Pacific for the first time from China.

51) Interestingly people may wonder why China never took Central Asia at all? Afterall, the Han dynasty did chase the Mongols and the former occupiers of the current XinJiang province all the way to Central Asia. This happened to with the Tang dynasty. Why? The Han dynasty kept on giving them silver, silk and royal princesses in marriages but now and then the Mongols and the XingJiang province lords kept on invading parts of northern and north western China. So the then Han dynasty emperor sent in troops and chased them all the way to Central Asia. But why is that China never stayed in Central Asia? Indeed Han Chinese dynasties never established proper rules in the XingJiag Province before? Why? Because the Han Chinese people did not see the needs and did not feel like to control over people that were clearly not quite Chinese.

52) You may then ask why Communist China is now in control of XinJiang and Tibet? Well, historically and militarily, they have inherited these regions and have to hold on to them.

53) The last imperial dynasty of China were the Manchu or the people from North East China north of Korea. They took over Mongolia before they conquered all China. Then they took over XingJiang in late 1600’s. In early 1700’s, they brought in Tibet by force too. So for the next 300 years, Mongolia, XingJiang, and Tibet were officially parts of China. Their semiautonomous status was just that- semi and the full ultimate control came from China.

54) What the Manchu rulers of China did was to force migrations of millions of Han Chinese to their own home land in Manchuria. Over the centuries, the average people there were intermarried with the Chinese. Besides the nobles and high ranking officials and military, more or less Manchuria was Han Chinese by blood. Whatever left of ethnic Manchu was small minority even before the fall of their empire.

55) Why did then the Communist China which is more or less Han Chinese not give up on Tibet and XingJiang? Well, military considerations. You take Tibet as first. By mid 1950’s, ballistic missiles that could fly thousands of km’s were reality. Then you had intercontinental missiles being developed and nearly fully developed by the time China went in and took over Tibet directly. Why? The Chinese military would have told the Chinese government and Chairman Mao and Premier Zhou En-Lai that if the west took Tibet, ballistic missiles would be installed in Tibet aiming at China. With ballistic missiles already deployed in Japan and South Korean aiming at China. The Chinese certainly did not want Tibet to be taken over for launching missiles agains them. Think about what you would do if you had been China at the time. There was no choice but to act and act decisively. Yes, folks, would you not think why the Chinese would never give up on Tibet just for this fear of ballistic missiles from Tibet?

56) And how about XingJiang province that always, along with Mongolia, have given China so much grief since dot one? In the past, no Han people dynasties ever took over this region for any length of time. So why are the Chinese keeping it? Well, former Soviet Union. China needed this region as the buffer zones. Also this. Given Mongolia was stolen from China by Lenin-Stalin in the chaotic period after the fall of the last dynasty in China in 1920, an independent XingJiang could have become a puppet to the Soviet-Russia as Mongolia did for all those decades till the fall of the Soviet Union. Given the uncertainty in Central Asia, China but have to hang on to XingJiang.

57) So again, ask why China have not taken Korea, Vietnam, Laos, and indeed all of Indo-China when over the centuries and indeed now, she could easily have done so? China is so large, it is more or less content. Why risks wars for no gains but losses even the war is won?

58) European and hence Western history is full of wars between small nations in Europe. Their experiences and hence comprehensions of what could happen are all based on the frequent wars in Europe. This is not the experiences in China. So why is that the understand of European history be applicable to that of China at all?

59) If China have never bothered to take over Korea and Indo-China such as Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, why would China come all the way to Australia? Think…

60) So do not try to use the understandings of European and western history in guessing what the intentions of China for the rest of the world are....

VentNote VentNote
56-60, M
Aug 21, 2014