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  • Chinese diplomats in Fiji 

  • Crashed Taiwan's National Day Party

  • But that's not all they're doing

  • To challenge Taiwan in the Pacific

  • Welcome back to China  Uncensored. I'm Chris Chappell

  • There was a major diplomatic incident  between China and Taiwan this month in Fiji.

  • What happened? Well, it's a bit  of a he said/she said situation.

  • According to Taiwan, two Chinese diplomats  

  • crashed a Taiwanese National  Day Party in Fiji on October 8.

  • I believe we have a picture of the  two Chinese diplomats in question.

  • Anyway, the party crashing  led to a fistfight in Fiji.

  • Also known as a stoush.

  • A scuffle.

  • A fracas.

  • Newspapers love a good old-fashioned fracas.

  • Anyway, the fight was serious enough to land  

  • a Taiwanese official in the  hospital with a concussion.

  • So why did these Chinese diplomats crash  Taiwan's National Day party? Well Taiwanese  

  • officials say that the Chinese diplomats were  trying to photograph the people who were there

  • Beijing has deployed such  tacticsturning up at events,  

  • taking photographs of peoplein recent years to  intimidate its rivals and those who support them.”

  • When the Taiwanese staff tried to  stop them from taking photographs,  

  • the Chinese diplomats assaulted them

  • Of course, Beijing totally denies this

  • "First of all, Taiwan has no so-called diplomats  in Fiji...The relevant report you mentioned is  

  • totally inconsistent with the facts. Taiwan  is like a thief crying 'stop thief'."

  • Yeah, there aren't any so-called  Taiwanese diplomats in Fiji,  

  • which means we couldn't have so-called punched  them in their so-called faces. In fact,  

  • those Taiwanese diplomats who don't  exist punched us in the face first!

  • Chinese authorities are saying that  the Taiwaneseacted provocatively  

  • against the Chinese Embassy staff...causing  injuries and damage to one Chinese diplomat.”

  • So how did those Chinese diplomats  get there in the first place?  

  • They totally didn't crash Taiwan's party

  • They were justcarrying out their official duties  in the public area outside the function venue.”

  • ...official duties that may or may not  have included secretly photographing  

  • people going into the venue. And  trying to crash Taiwan's party.  

  • In any case, since Taiwan is part of China,  

  • that means this Taiwanese party  is actually a Chinese party,  

  • which means that the Chinese diplomats weren't  crashing, they were just going to their own party!

  • Everyone knows the best  party is a Communist Party

  • But the Chinese foreign ministry  wants the world to know that the real  

  • problem isn't the party crashingThe real problem is the cake.

  • That's because “a false national flag  was openly displayed at the scene;  

  • the cake was also marked with a false national  flag,” according to spokesman Zhao Lijian.

  • I believe that Zhao is saying  that the cake is a lie.

  • In the end, police were called to the event, but  the Chinese officials claimed diplomatic immunity.

  • The actions of the Chinese diplomats in Fiji  are part of China's increasingly aggressive  

  • Wolf Warrior Diplomacy.” 

  • As well as the Chinese Communist  Party's increasing threats to Taiwan.

  • But that's not the whole story.  

  • What happened in Fiji is also about China's  growing attempts to dominate the Pacific.

  • And I'll tell you how, after this short break.

  • Welcome back. China's fracas  over a Taiwanese cake in Fiji  

  • is just a small part of the Communist  Party's attempts to dominate the Pacific.

  • Fiji is located here, in the South Pacific,  a short flight away from Australia.

  • Fiji is an archipelago of more than 300 islands.  

  • It's most famous for its abundant  natural resources, like bottled water.

  • Fun fact: Fiji used to be known as  

  • the Cannibal Isles. I imagine they changed  the name because it was hard to get tourists.

  • Welcome to the Cannibal IslesWe're here to serve you

  • Anyway, Fiji was one of the first Pacific  

  • nations to recognize the People's  Republic of China back in 1975. 

  • But relations between Fiji and  the Chinese Communist Party  

  • really started warming up back in 2006,  

  • after the current prime minister of Fiji, Frank  Bainimarama, seized power in a military coup

  • China didn't criticize the coup. In factthey increased their aid to Fiji dramatically,  

  • from 1 million dollars to 161  million dollars within two years.

  • Chinese leader Xi Jinping has personally  met with Bainimarama several times,  

  • including during a state visit to Fiji in 2014.

  • During that visit, they signed five agreements  as part of China's Pacific engagement strategy.

  • Fiji is also part of China's Belt and Road  Initiative. In just the last five years,  

  • China has invested more than a billion dollars  in Fiji, mostly for infrastructure projects.

  • Like these Fiji-China Friendship Bridges. Yeahthey really cemented the bilateral friendship

  • Hey Xinhua, I'm the one who makes punny  jokes around here. Stay in your lane

  • Fiji also became the first Pacific  island nation to get a loan  

  • from China's infrastructure investment bank.

  • There have been some hiccups along the way. Like  a Chinese mega-resort that destroyed a local reef  

  • and then had its building rights revoked

  • But overall, the relationship between  Fiji and China has gotten even closer  

  • after the coronavirus outbreak.

  • Chinese state-run media are talking about  speeding up construction projects in Fiji.

  • Fiji does not have official  diplomatic relations with Taiwan,  

  • but Taiwan does have a de facto embassy  in Fijithe Taipei Trade Office.

  • And their National Day celebration, the one  that sparked the literal diplomatic fight,  

  • was attended by Fiji government ministersopposition leaders, and prominent businesspeople.

  • So it's easy to see why the Chinese  diplomats were so eager to figure out  

  • who was at the party. Eating  that delicious, delicious cake.

  • In fact, Taiwan's influence  is one of the big reasons  

  • that the Chinese Communist Party  is more interested in the Pacific

  • More on that after the break.

  • Welcome back. Taiwan iskey reason why the Chinese  

  • Communist Party is interested in the Pacific

  • Although frankly we are running out of parts of  the globe where China does not have an interest.

  • But four of the 15 countries that officially  recognize Taiwan are in the Pacific: Nauru,  

  • Palau, the Marshall Islands, and Tuvalu.

  • Last year, the Chinese Communist Party  managed to get two Pacific countries to  

  • switch diplomatic relations from Taiwan to  China: The Solomon Islands and Kiribati.

  • Thanks to China's diplomatic application  of... lots and lots of money.

  • There's a lot more going on with China and  these Pacific nations than I can fit into this  

  • episodeLet me know if I should  do another episode on this topic

  • But broadly speaking, the Pacific is one place  that Taiwan and China compete heavily for  

  • influence, especially because Taiwan can afford to  give more aid to these smaller Pacific countries

  • Remember: no matter how big or small a country  is, it gets one vote in the United Nations.  

  • And the Pacific Ocean happens to be  a great place to build naval bases.

  • But it's not just Taiwan that's worried  about China's increasing role in the Pacific.

  • Australia and New Zealand are also nervous about  China gaining more influence in their backyard.  

  • In case China decides to turn the nine-dash line  

  • into the 19-dash line. Or for  that matter the 90-dash line.

  • That's one reason both Australia and New Zealand  are competing with China for influence in the  

  • South Pacific as well. For example, Australia  outbid China to fund a military base in Fiji.

  • And the United States is paying  attention, too. After all,  

  • the US not only has territory in the Pacificit also has many military bases in the region.

  • Last month Palau, which recognizes Taiwan and not  

  • China, invited the US to buildmilitary base on their islands as well.

  • That's after US Defense Secretary  Mark Esper visited Palau  

  • and accused Beijing of being “a  malign influencein the region.

  • And Beijing is the big reason that the US  has just released its 2020 Pacific Pledge.

  • It's a pledge to give more than 200 million  dollars of funding to the Pacific islands,  

  • including 130 million dollars to  support the response to COVID-19.

  • So expect to see growing diplomatic rivalries  in the Pacific over the next few years  

  • between China and Taiwan, AustraliaNew Zealand, and the United States.

  • Sounds like it's going to be  a real party. Pass the cake.

  • And now it's time for me to  answer a question from one of you,  

  • who supports China Uncensored through  the crowdfunding website Patreon.

  • Bill asks, Do you think the USA should  sell F-35 fighter planes to Taiwan,  

  • thus, giving Taiwan the ability to remove  all Chinese airplanes from its air space?  

  • Taiwan might send a message to  the CCP: "Do Not Tread On Me!"

  • Well, Bill it's complicated. Two years agoTaiwan had wanted to buy F-35 stealth fighter  

  • jets from the US. But they stopped requesting that  last year, and asked for F-16 fighters instead

  • The US just finalized that sale two months ago.

  • Why did Taiwan stop asking for the F-35s? 

  • The air force turned its back on  pursuing the F-35B short takeoff/vertical  

  • landing (STOVL) fighter due to a recent Taiwan  National Security Council report. It indicated the  

  • stealth fighter was too exorbitant and untested in  real combat to be a pragmatic choice for Taiwan.”

  • There was also concern that the US might not  sell the F-35 to Taiwan for security reasons.

  • But some experts say that  Taiwan still needs the F-35,  

  • since they don't have any stealth fighter jets

  • And a former deputy undersecretary of defense has  suggested that instead of selling F-35s to Taiwan,  

  • the US should lease them.

  • The idea would be that the planes would  be leased to Taiwan but would stay  

  • in the US. That way they could bedeterrent to China, but China wouldn't  

  • be able to spy on the F-35s, or attack themsince they wouldn't be physically in Taiwan.

  • It's an interesting idea

  • Thanks for your question Bill

  • And if you'd like to have me respond to  your question or comment on the show,  

  • join what I call the China Uncensored 50 Army...

  • and support us in the battle against the Chinese  Communist Party. You can join for as little as a  

  • dollar per episode on the crowd funding website  Patreon. You'll also get some other cool perks  

  • as well. Head over to Patreon.com/China  Uncensored to learn more. Link is below.

  • Once again, I'm Chris Chappell. See you next time.

Chinese diplomats in Fiji 

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China Fights Taiwan in Fiji

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    zijun su posted on 2021/06/08
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