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Suspected rebels shot five soldiers dead in Indian-controlled Kashmir, the deadliest incident since February when Pakistan and India arrived at a ceasefire to prevent open conflict between the mutually antagonistic nuclear-armed powers, who have seethed in enmity for decades. The ceasefire is now falling apart, as the Kashmir attack illustrates. Meanwhile, minor skirmishes broke out in northern India while 200 Chinese soldiers in the disputed territory were reportedly detained by Indian forces. They were held for five hours before their release. This comes on the heels of a 17-month standoff and border talks that drag on with dwindling optimism and little progress. Furthermore, China’s heavy investment in Pakistan and the crucial role envisioned for Kashmir in Beijing’s unfolding Belt and Road initiative have ensured a significant Chinese interest in the fate of India and Kashmir. With Chinese pressure from the north and Pakistani pressure from the west, does India have a looming two-front war on its hands?
Chris Fenton, author of “Feeding the Dragon: Inside the Trillion Dollar Dilemma Facing Hollywood, the NBA, & American Business” shares his insights. Meanwhile, Beijing continues its military exercises in skies around an increasingly anxious Taiwan and has just finished readiness drills on nearby beaches of its coast near the contentious island.. Beijing does not recognize the sovereignty of Taiwan, which operates with de facto autonomy and maintains deep commercial, diplomatic and crucial defense ties with Washington. Meanwhile, Chinese officials have stated that they will be prepared to successfully invade Taiwan by 2025. Former Naval intelligence officer John Jordan shares his expertise. He believes that China’s moves should be read as an effort to bring tensions down in the region by emphasizing its defense capabilities and “showing its hand” vis-a-vis military preparedness. He also points out that China’s foreign policy is in large part geared toward influencing domestic attitudes. US Navy engineer Jonathan Toebbe and his wife Diana Toebbe have been busted trying to sell “restricted data” concerning the design of US nuclear submarines for $100,000 in cryptocurrency. The unscrupulous couple left data cards containing numerous pages of secret information at drop sites hidden in, among other things, peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches. It turns out the Toebbes were in contact not with a foreign government but with FBI agents posing as one. RT America’s Faran Fronczak reports. The sight of bare shelves at local grocery and retail stores is becoming ever more common. Tobin Smith of Transformity Research and former USTR official Steve Gill weigh in on the domestic supply shortage in everyday household items in communities across the US and what’s rending global supply chains, from rising gas prices to domestic labor shortage to stifling regulations to the vicissitudes of nature. Plus, RT America’s Natasha Sweatte examines a new California law mandating a designated gender-neutral section in big retail stores that market gendered products, such as pink and blue toothbrushes.
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