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06/23/2021

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John T.

An interesting turn of events on the seizure of media sites, but I would like to comment on the transit of the USN destroyer which is really an aside to your central focus.

Since Alfred Mahan first wrote about the role of naval power as an aspect of national power the USN has routinely pushed back against limits being imposed by foreign powers. This could almost be marked from the time TR sent the "Great White Fleet" on a cruise around the globe to announce to the world our emergence as a naval power.

Today a passage as you noted is actually part of a long-standing US policy called "Freedom of Navigation" (there is a good fact sheet dated March 2015 on the subject). Whether the President had any direct knowledge of that singular event is always open to debate, but with his staff's focus on critical issues like social justice, climate change, and investigation of the Jan 6 protest I doubt many in the WH really know or care about such mundane things.

There was a reason it was only a little destroyer and not the 7th fleet with its aircraft carriers that made the trip between Taiwan and the Mainland. While it pricked the CCP it led to nothing more than a routine comment in the press about how the west was provoking them, rather than forcing a military confrontation.

John Pepple

Thanks for the history lesson.

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