Global SITREP for Thursday, 13 June 2024 – Forward Observer

Global SITREP for Thursday, 13 June 2024

Good morning, and welcome to the Global Situation Report for Thursday, 13 June 2024.

  1. MARCOS: OUR ANCESTORS DID NOT BACK DOWN FROM WAR: China and the Philippines are continuously provoking each other in the South China Sea ahead of the June 15th Chinese Coast Guard law arrest authorization. Meanwhile, Philippine President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. used his Independence Day speech to call for Filipinos to defend their territory because “Our ancestors did not back down from war.”
  • China sent three Type 055 cruisers and one Type 052C destroyer to the South China Sea near Sabina Shoal to conduct multiple drills, including land bombardment, replenishment-at-sea, and “sea assault” drills. The Philippines conducted its first-ever flag-raising ceremony on Sabina Shoal during these drills to celebrate Independence Day.
  • Troops aboard the BRP Sierra Madre were practicing to “repel boarders” while they were surrounded by eight People’s Liberation Army Navy, five Chinese Coast Guard, and 37 Maritime Militia vessels, according to the Philippine Spokesman for the West Philippine Sea (South China Sea).
  • National Security Adviser Eduardo Año declared the government would back Filipino territorial defense “despite the complexities and uncertainties of today’s world.”

Why It Matters: Marcos has increasingly clarified his position from vague suggestions of “worrisome eventualities” to explicitly preparing for war. A war for the Philippines would activate the mutual defense treaty with the United States. A war in the South China Sea would also cut off an enormous amount of global trade and oil. – J.V.

  1. CANADIAN INTELLIGENCE: PRC OPERATIVES ARE IN CANADA’S GOV’T: The Canadian National Security and Intelligence Committee of Parliamentarians released its annual report on foreign interference in Canada’s democratic processes throughout 2023.
  • China and India were the two largest culprits of foreign interference. The report noted that Russia retained its ability to conduct interference but had no will to do so.
  • The Canadian intelligence services redacted the details but noted that they were aware of a Chinese plot in a specific electoral district and had failed to counter the campaign.
  • China specifically targets Chinese diaspora Parliamentarians and National Security officials for influence. The report confirms that some Parliamentarians “began wittingly assisting foreign state actors soon after their election.”

Why It Matters: The height of the infiltration likely compromises the Five Eyes security agreement as Canada is one of the U.S.’ most trusted allies. The summaries from the redacted version indicate the classified report either names foreign operatives and entities or provides enough details to identify them.  We are likely to see a push for a purge of these people from the more conservative Canadian Parliamentarians. – J.V.

  • Global Rollup
    • A Taiwanese Coast Guard vessel docked in Honolulu, Hawaii, marking the longest voyage the branch has taken. (The bi-annual Rim of the Pacific Exercise kicks off in two weeks. The Taiwanese may be in Hawaii to observe the exercise and implement lessons learned for their navy. – J.V.)
    • NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg announced that NATO members will take tougher actions in response to a spate of Russian sabotage and cyber-attacks across the alliance. 

THAT’S A WRAP: This does it for today’s edition. Thank you for reading. If you know folks who would also like to receive this email, would you please forward it to them? We appreciate you spreading the word. – M.S.

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