Yeah, but this new one isn’t thousands of years old. It was only spotted last month. Lets break it down.
On the left is the Great Wall of China. It was built in 700 BC to defend China’s borders from invaders.
And on the right is the Chinese Great Wall of Sand.
It appeared in 2015 and is there… to defend China’s borders. Well, if it worked before, why not do the same again.
China has been building the “wall” in the South China Sea. Chinese ships pumped sand onto existing coral reefs to build and extend patches of land.
They are then adding concrete and creating airbases out in the middle of the ocean. Oh, and they are also installing weaponry on the islands. Not suspicious at all.
An ocean is a big place; it’s quite difficult to know which bits belong to different countries. After all you can’t exactly just put your flag in the water. Back to the drawing board I suppose.
China claims that the whole of the South China Sea is Chinese Territory. Fair enough, I mean it does have their name in it.
But other countries like Taiwan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Brunei (no we hadn’t heard of it either) and Vietnam say some parts are theirs.
All the countries disagree over who owns the Spratly Island Chain. This is a small group of islands in the South China Sea.
So did the countries do the sensible thing and talk it out? Not a chance. Most of the countries involved have built separate military outposts along the Spratly Island Chain to stake their claim.
The islands are hundreds of miles from China. This hasn’t stopped the Chinese marking their territory by pouring tons of sand into the sea and building on existing coral reefs to create military bases. At the moment, these are separate bases. As the Chinese keep on building people have joked that they are building a second wall of China in the sea. It’s ambitious, I’ll give them that.
China and the USA haven’t been the best of friends recently. The USA is suspicious of China’s military expansion and worries China will evolve into a dangerous superpower. And China dislikes being told what to do by the Yankees.
China and other countries are about to attend the Shangri-La dialogue. This is meeting is for world leaders in the Pacific/Asia area to discuss security and military events. I wonder what they will be talking about?
A series of exits checks on citizens leaving the UK begin today, and by June it will effect everyone.
MODE OF TRANSPORTATION: COMMERICIAL AIR, SEA AND RAIL aka. pretty much everywhere as new checkpoints have been introduced in coach halls, ferry points and in train terminals that uses the Euro tunnel.
METHOD: Scan of the passport and a verification (meaning an official does a double take of your face to check if it matches your passport picture). No fake ID’s please.
TAKE TWO: This is a re-introduction, the last time we had exit checks were in 1998.
MORE INFORMATION: in the form of data so the government can keep an eye on who’s doing what, how and when.
REIGNING IN ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION: This data will be able to improve identify and further tighten routes and visas that are vulnerable to being abused by illegal immigrants.
COMBATTING CRIME: Illegal immgration is a crime but the information collected will also help track wanted suspects or could play a vital role in solving crimes. Here’s hoping no more teenagers will be able to flee to Syria.
MONITORING NUMBERS: It has been often difficult to be certain about how many people have left the country and not returned in order to give an accurate account of what immigration figures actually are in the UK. This new system will make sure we know exactly how many people are roaming these lands.
CREATING MORE JOBS: 50 new staff have been recruited.
GENERAL ELECTION TACTICS: Given that this is being bought in the final month of a Conservative government, it has the ability to gain popularity amongst the UKIP supporters or those who have been troubled by an immigration surge on home turf in the UK.
MORE QUEUES: Well we don’t know for sure yet, but this is the UK, we already have to queue to drop off our bags, get a ticket or board a ferry so make that of it what you will.