Is this the end of the Prius? In retaliation for Japan's incarceration of a Chinese shipping captain for ramming two Japanese patrol boats in the East China sea, Beijing is halting exports of rare earth minerals to Japan, which are esssential for manufacturing products like the Prius. But if ever there was a time to thank China, this is it. Beijing's decision should come as a wakeup call to Washington, DC to reopen a rare earth mine in Mountain Pass, California and end its dependence on China.
As John Lee notes on this website, China is engaging in increasingly ham-fisted diplomacy and muscleflexing, particularly in claiming rights to the South China sea. It's already backfiring. China is singlehandedly reviving the Japanese-American security alliance and prompting other countries in the region to look more favorably on Washington. America remains the only power that can balance a rising China. As Edward Wong observes in the New York Times, "rising frictions between China and its neighbors in recent weeks over security issues have handed the United States an opportunity to reassert itself — one the Obama administration has been keen to take advantage of."
China would have done better to keep a lower profile More at: