"Every perception is to some degree an act of creation, and every act of memory is to some degree an act of imagination."
-- Gerald Edelman, Second Nature: Brain Science and Human Knowledge
3 The Military War5 The Military WarThe Military WarChapter 7: US-China Relations and Wars2020-10-18Journal
In thinking about the timing of a war, I keep in mind the principle that when countries have big internal disorder, it is an opportune moment for opposing countries to aggressively exploit their vulnerabilities.** For example, the Japanese made their moves to take control of European colonies in Southeast Asia in the 1930s when the European countries were challenged by their depressions and their conflicts. History has also taught us that when there are leadership transitions and/or weak leadership, at the same time that there is big internal conflict, the risk of the enemy making an offensive move should be considered elevated.** For example, those conditions could exist in the upcoming US presidential election. However, because time is on China’s side (because of the trends of improvements and weakenings shown in prior charts), if there is to be a war, it is in the interest of the Chinese to have it later (e.g., 5-10 years from now when it will likely be more self-sufficient and stronger) and in the interest of the US to have it sooner.