Are Rare Earths China’s Ultimate Weapon? | New Eastern Outlook

are-rare-earths-china’s-ultimate-weapon?-|-new-eastern-outlook

26-05-19 11:55:00,

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In the dramatic escalation of tariff escalations and trade war tensions between China and the USA, China President Xi Jinping made a well-timed visit to see the JL Mag Rare-Earth Company Ltd., a state-owned complex in Ganzhou. Though he did not openly threaten, he sent a clear psychological message to Washington that China has more weapons in its arsenal to pressure the Trump Administration. What is the nature of the China role in rare earth minerals mining and how serious is the likelihood they could weaponize it?

In a May 20 article the China government paper, Global Times, wrote of the Xi Jinping visit, “The visit [is] seen as a sign of backing from the top leadership for the domestic rare-earth industry.” They further noted not so subtly, “Many have suggested that China should limit rare-earth exports to the US as a countermeasure to the US decision to slap tariffs on Chinese goods and cut supplies of semiconductors for Chinese companies.” The paper makes a point to note that rare earth metals from China were “among the few items excluded from the latest US tariff list.”

The question is how serious would it impact the US economy were China to ban exports of rare earths to the USA? Short answer, very serious.

In addition to its use in most electronic devices such as smart phones or laptops, rare earth minerals are absolutely essential to the Pentagon and the US military forces. According to Breaking Defense newsletter, rare earth components are essential for such major weapons systems as the nuclear-powered SSN-774 Virginia-class fast attack submarine; the DDG-51 Aegis destroyer; the F-35 Joint Strike fighter among others. They note that “Rare earths are also essential to precision-guided munitions, lasers, satellite communications, radar, sonar and other military equipment, added a 2013 Congressional Research Service report.”

Import dependency

Now the next question is to what degree is the US economy, especially its defense industrial base dependent on imports of China rare earths? The answer is almost 100%. According to a December, 2017 report by the US Geological Survey, China today supplies more than 90% of world rare earths. This has been the case since the late 1990s when the Government of China prioritized its development of the vital minerals.

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The Weakening Of Earth’s Magnetic Field Has Greatly Accelerated

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13-04-19 05:49:00,

Authored by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,

Earth’s magnetic field is getting significantly weaker, the magnetic north pole is shifting at an accelerating pace, and scientists readily admit that a sudden pole shift could potentially cause “trillions of dollars” in damage.  Today, most of us take the protection provided by Earth’s magnetic field completely for granted.  It is essentially a colossal force field which surrounds our planet and makes life possible.  And even with such protection, a giant solar storm could still potentially hit our planet and completely fry our power grid.  But as our magnetic field continues to get weaker and weaker, even much smaller solar storms will have the potential to be cataclysmic.  And once the magnetic field gets weak enough, we will be facing much bigger problems.  As you will see below, if enough solar radiation starts reaching our planet none of us will survive.

Previously, scientists had told us that the magnetic field was weakening by about 5 percent every 100 years.

But now we are being told that data collected from the SWARM satellite indicate that the rate of decay is now 5 percent per decade

It’s well established that in modern times, the axial dipole component of Earth’s main magnetic field is decreasing by approximately 5% per century. Recently, scientists using the SWARM satellite announced that their data indicate a decay rate ten times faster, or 5% per decade.

In case you didn’t quite get that, 5 percent per decade is 10 times faster than 5 percent per century.

If the rate of decay continues at this pace, or if it speeds up even more, we could be looking at a mass extinction event that is beyond what most people would dare to imagine.

As more solar radiation reaches Earth, we would expect to see a rise in cancer rates, and this is something that even National Geographic has acknowledged

However, if the magnetic field gets substantially weaker and stays that way for an appreciable amount of time Earth will be less protected from the oodles of high-energy particles that are constantly flying around in space.

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