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South China Sea Flyover Video

Et tu, Jakarta?

In a rare move to avoid further isolation in a region where it has territorial disputes with nearly all of its maritime neighbors, China made a major concession last week by publicly clarifying and acknowledging Indonesia's sovereign right to the Natuna Islands in the South China Sea.

LOCKHEED MARTIN F-22 RAPTOR Role: Stealth air superiority fighter Manufacturer: Lockheed Martin Status: In service The Lockheed Martin F-22 Raptor is a single-seat, twin-engine, all-weather stealth tactical fighter aircraft developed for the United States Air Force (USAF). The result of the USAF'sAdvanced Tactical Fighter program, the aircraft was designed primarily as an air superiority fighter, but has additional capabilities including ground attack, electronic warfare, and signals intelligence roles.[6] Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor and was responsible for the majority of the airframe, weapon systems, and final assembly of the F-22, while program partnerBoeing provided the wings, aft fuselage, avionics integration, and training systems. The aircraft was variously designated F-22 and F/A-22 prior to formally entering service in December 2005 as the F-22A. Despite a protracted development as well as operational issues, the USAF considers the F-22 a critical component of its tactical air power, and states that the aircraft is unmatched by any known or projected fighter. The Raptor's combination of stealth, aerodynamic performance, and situational awareness gives the aircraft unprecedented air combat capabilities. The high cost of the aircraft, a lack of clear air-to-air missions due to delays in Russian and Chinese fighter programs, a ban on exports, and development of the more versatile and lower cost F-35 led to the end of F-22 production. A final procurement tally of 187 operational production aircraft was established in 2009 and the last F-22 was delivered to the USAF in 2012.  (U.S Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Taylor Worley)

Storm over Russia border rages

Last week, a seemingly innocuous news item in China's state media sparked an unexpected firestorm in China and Russia, exposing the shaky foundation upon which the much-hyped Beijing-Moscow united front challenging the West and the existing geopolitical order has been built.

Luo Yuan: A profile in chutzpah

He is arguably China's most jingoistic senior military voice, heralded by some as a national hero while hated by many more for his unvarnished battle cries for military actions when tensions soar between Beijing and its many adversaries and rivals, including Taiwan, Japan, the Philippines and most prominently, the United States.

A man smokes near a portrait of late Chinese leader Mao Zedong hung on a replica of the Tiananmen Gate in Yinchuan in northwestern China's Ningxia Hui autonomous region on Thursday, Oct. 8, 2015.  Research published in the medical journal The Lancet says one in three of all the young men in China are likely to die from tobacco, but that the number can fall if the men quit smoking. (AP Photo/Ng Han Guan)

Toxic voice of history

One of China's most outrageously cool superstars is a high school history teacher, wildly popular among the nation's young, who follow him online and offline in the tens of millions. Ironically, he is also one of the nation's most censored public intellectuals.

Chinese President Xi Jinping said his country will give $1 billion toward U.N. peacekeeping efforts, including those in Syria. (Associated Press) **FILE**

Marxism: The opium of the Chinese masses

Last week, Beijing hosted the inaugural "World Congress on Marxism," accompanied by much celebratory fanfare in the capital city. Over 400 luminaries, government officials and scholars from the United States, Egypt, Cuba, North Korea and more than a dozen other countries were flown in for the proletarian extravaganza. The event lasted for two days and it will be held every other year in Beijing, the newly self-anointed center of global Marxism studies.

RETRANSMISSION TO ADD COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY - This Tuesday, Feb. 7 2012 photo shows 2010 Nobel Peace Prize winner Liu Xiaobo holding a doll in a detail of a photograph by his wife, Chinese artist Liu Xia on display at during a preview of "The Silent Strength of Liu Xia" exhibit at The Italian Academy in Columbia University in New York. The photos were spirited out of China just before Liu was placed under house arrest after her husband, imprisoned in 2009 for urging democratic reform, won the Nobel. Her works are censored in her native country. The exhibition opens Thursday, Feb. 9, 2012. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer) **FILE**

The Nobel conundrum

Like all communist governments obsessed with finding every piece of tangible evidence to prove their all-around greatness, China has yearned to have genuine homegrown Nobel Prize winners to showcase the achievements of the vanguards of the Chinese proletariat. Yet, several Chinese laureates later, Beijing is finding out that Nobel glory can also be a double-edged sword.

Soldiers from the People's Liberation Army (PLA) 6th Armored Division carry the Chinese type 97 semiautomatic machine guns at their military base on the outskirts of Beijing. (AP Photo/Andy Wong) ** FILE **

The knifing of the People's Liberation Army

At the massive Sept. 3 military parade in Beijing, Chinese President Xi Jinping -- who meets President Obama in Washington as part of his state visit Friday -- made a surprising announcement that the PLA would cut its troop strength by 300,000, or 13 percent, to about 2 million troops.


Asia's Donald Trump targeted as ingrate to China

With a net worth of about $30 billion, much of it in real estate investments in China and Hong Kong, Li Kai-shing is the richest man in Asia, known for his shrewd business acumen and extraordinary ability to cultivate cozy relationships with communist officials in China to strike great deals in the world's fastest growing real estate market.

Chinese parade, Russian games

As China gears up for a communist-style extravaganza with a military parade and ceremonial grandiosity next week to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the defeat of Japan in World War II, Beijing is determined and eager to show off its military might to the world. It's also making a clear attempt to isolate Japan from the international community and send a special message of China's military might to its most distinguished guest, Russia's equally bombast-loving President Vladimir Putin.

Huge explosions in the warehouse district of China's Tianjin municipality sent up massive fireballs that turned the night sky into day, officials and witnesses said. (Xinhua via AP)

Beijing's cover-up of the Tianjin explosions exposes government's own toxic fault lines

The blasts that rocked the northern Chinese port city of Tianjin on Aug. 12 are said to have released a destructive power equivalent to an earthquake of 2.3 magnitude on the Richter scale. But the political aftershocks have been even more devastating to the Chinese government, revealing design flaws in the communist system's ability to control information and some glaringly negligent safety regulations.

Illustration on U.S. China relations by Donna Grethen/Tribune Content Agency

Claim of evil U.S. plot for 'historical nihilism' goes viral on Chinese Internet

To denounce one's past is to doom one's present; and when one's present is doomed, one's future is ruined. That is not something from Confucius or from a Chinese fortune cookie. It is the battle cry of a fierce war on "historical nihilism" being waged by the Chinese Communist Party under President Xi Jinping, who has a doctorate degree in "scientific socialism" from China's prestigious Tsinghua University, the intramural rival of its next-door neighbor, Peking University.

An investor covers his eyes at a brokerage house in Fuyang in central China's Anhui province on Wednesday. (Associated Press)

Official: China stock crash is U.S. economic warfare

Last month's stock market crash in China was without any doubt an economic war against China covertly waged by the United States, with the direct objective of subverting the ruling Communist Party, according to the most powerful leader of China's massive state-owned corporate enterprises.

James Soong displayed his ability to jolt the political landscape by announcing that he just might jump into Taiwan's crucial 2016 presidential race. (Associated Press)

James Soong: Taiwan's kingmaker in action again

He is the most enigmatic figure in Taiwanese politics. Admired by many, loathed by some but courted by most, he has commanded attention in all of the island's key elections and helped decide the outcome in the most crucial ones since Taiwan embraced full-blown democracy in the 1990s.

Ma Ying-jeou

Selection of lightweight from Taiwan's ruling party a sign of weakness

Without the usual boisterous and contentious primary election, and without the traditional backroom wheeling and dealing among party elders and luminaries to decide their next presidential candidate, Taiwan's ruling political party, the KMT, has moved with uncharacteristic alacrity to select a political lightweight to compete against opposition Democratic Progressive Party heavyweight candidate Tsai Ing-wen in next year's election.

The Chinese government's sinking credibility

The worst domestic maritime tragedy since China's Communists came to power — the still-unexplained capsizing of a Yangtze River cruise ship that claimed more than 440 lives in the dark of night June 1 — has generated worldwide media attention.

(AP Photo)

China's bizarre anti-Japanese TV and movie kitsch backfires

China's sustained, state-mobilized anti-Japanese propaganda campaign, one that has permeated the main news, arts and entertainment industries, has run into a wave of domestic criticism, as many World War II-themed anti-Japanese dramas on television have come across as bizarre, vulgar, even pornographic kitsch. The campaign is causing public revulsion and condemnation.