Monday, June 6, 2011

Caucus Brief: Gates Cites New Weapons for U.S. Role in Asia

GATES CITES NEW WEAPONS FOR U.S. ROLE IN ASIA.  While in Singapore, Secretary Gates vowed that the U.S. will maintain a "robust" presence in Asia that will include new high-tech weaponry to protect allies and safeguard shipping lanes.  Without specifically mentioning China, Secretary Gates described this modernization as a response to, "the prospect that new and disruptive technologies and weapons could be employed to deny U.S. forces access to key sea routes and lines of communication." 

U.S. TELLS ASIA IT WON'T BE ISOLATIONIST.  Defense Secretary Gates pledged to U.S. allies in the region that America will maintain its military and diplomatic presence in Asia.  Secretary Gates, quoted by the NYT: "We recognize that the American defense engagement – from our forward deployed forces to exercises with regional partners – will continue to play an indispensable role in the stability of the region…establishing a defense posture across the Asia-Pacific that is more geographically distributed, operationally resilient politically sustainable." 

TIANANMEN ANNIVERSARY BRINGS NEW CHINA DETENTIONS.  Chinese security forces rounded up more government critics ahead of the anniversary of the 1989 pro-democracy movement in Tiananmen Square.  Additionally, Beijing has decried the U.S. government's call for a full accounting of the military assault 22 years ago.  On June 4th, some hundred thousand people attended a candlelight vigil in Hong Kong's Victoria Park to mark the anniversary.

THOMAS FRIEDMAN: ADVICE FOR CHINA.  Thomas Friedman wrote an open letter to Chinese President Hu Jintao in the NYT.  This letter provides advice for liberalizing China in light of the Arab Spring and Chinese crackdown. 


CHINESE HACKING OF WHITE HOUSE EMAIL AFFECTS DIVERSE DEPT.  The cyber attack against U.S. government officials' Google email accounts were reportedly directed against a number of officials in the White House.  Those targeted were not limited to national security, economic policy and trade policy experts.  No sensitive information is suspected of being lost because classified and confidential information cannot be forwarded to Gmail accounts.  This attack was traced to Jinan, China the home of a Chinese military command center. 


CHINESE ARTIST SPEAKS OUT AFTER DETAINMENT.  Only hours after being detained and interrogated, an artist from China sat down with a foreign journalist to tell his story.  According to the 28-year-old artist, Chinese authorities warned him to keep quiet, move to another part of town, and not speak to anyone.  Upon his release, the artist returned home to an eviction notice and was asked to leave a restaurant because he had become "politically sensitive."  The young man was first detained because of his involvement with a Beijing art festival that labeled blank wall space as the work of detained artist Ai Weiwei. 

SOUTH FLORIDA PROFESSOR HELPED CHINESE STUDENTS GAIN VISAS.  A Professor at the University of South Florida was suspended when it came to light that he was using his position to expedite the visa approval process of visiting Chinese students.  While not charged with any crimes, the professor allegedly provided answers to Chinese students for University admittance tests while employing visiting students for personal errands.  Due to union guidelines, the professor could not be removed from his position and is expected to be back in the classroom this fall.

CHINA TELLS JAPAN IT IS NO THREAT.  Chinese Defense Minister Liang Guanglie assured his Japanese counterpart that China's development is no threat to Japan.  Minister Liang Guanglie: "China hopes Japan can face squarely the reality that China pursues a path of peaceful development, and that China's development is a great opportunity for the world, including Japan, and not a threat." 


The Caucus Brief is a daily publication for Members of Congress and Hill Staffers on China news and information compiled by the office of Congressman Randy Forbes, Founder of the Congressional China Caucus.  Email with tips, comments, or to subscribe/unsubscribe.

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