The Coming War on China
John Pilger reveals that the United States and China, both nuclear-armed, may well be on the road to war. The film is both a warning and an inspiring story of resistance.
Directed by John Pilger
Produced by Dartmouth Films
Editor: Joe Frost
Line Producer: Sandra Leeming
Executive Producer: Christopher Hird
Assistant Director: Bruno Sorrentino
Camera: Rupert Binsley, Owen Scurfield, Bruno Sorrentino, Joseph Zafar
Original Music: Joe Frost
Produced in association with SBS-TV Australia
[Note: Community screenings of THE COMING WAR ON CHINA can be booked at Bullfrog Communities.]
"John Pilger is the reason I am a journalist, for which I owe him deep gratitude." Stephen Romei, The Australian
Note to personal-use customers: You can buy home video copies here.
A nuclear war between the United States and China is not only imaginable but a current 'contingency', says the Pentagon. Filmed over two years across five potential flashpoints in Asia and the Pacific, THE COMING WAR ON CHINA reveals the build-up to war on more than 400 US military bases that encircle China in a 'perfect noose'.
Using rare archive and remarkable interviews with witnesses, Pilger's film discloses America's secret history in the region - the destruction wrought by the equivalent of one Hiroshima every day for 12 years, and the top secret 'Project 4.1' that made guinea pigs of the population of the Marshall Islands.
In key interviews from Pentagon war planners to members of China's confident new political class, who rarely feature in Western reports, Pilger's film challenges the notion and propaganda of China as a new 'enemy'.
THE COMING WAR ON CHINA is also a film about the human spirit and the rise of an extraordinary resistance in faraway places. On the island of Okinawa, home to 32 US bases, the population is challenging the greatest military power in the world. On the Korean island of Jeju, villagers block the entrance to a new nuclear naval base, with its missiles aimed at China.
Other films by John Pilger: Utopia, The War You Don't See, The War on Democracy, Breaking the Silence, Stealing a Nation, New Rulers of the World, Palestine is Still the Issue, Paying the Price: Killing the Children of Iraq, Inside Burma, and the four films in the Documentaries that Changed the World series: The Quiet Mutiny, Death of a Nation, Year Zero: The Silent Death of Cambodia, and Do You Remember Vietnam?.
Grade Level: 10-12, College, Adults
US Release Date: 2017
Copyright Date: 2016
DVD ISBN: 1-941545-76-9
"A sobering message against war. A powerful call for peace. There are better and more constructive ways of dealing with China's rise than what war mongers and military hawks advocate."
Zhiqun Zhu, Professor of Political Science and International Relations, Bucknell University
"Highly Recommended...The film details the uneasy relationship between China and the US, citing the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act, the opium trade, the Boxer Rebellion, and the 1949 Communist Revolution. At each step, Pilger exposes shady motives and practices by both powers...Few films are this bold...This is a timely documentary, and comes highly recommended for its creation of deep historical context, and unflinching assertions and proposals."
Michael J. Coffta, Educational Media Reviews Online
"Terrific new film...The Coming War gives the impression we are looking into the past, though its warning is aimed to the future...John Pilger has made yet another enthralling film."
Martin Billheimer, CounterPunch
"The Coming War on China should be viewed by anyone concerned about the world's greatest threat to peace: the US government...It does an excellent job of putting the American denunciations of China's aggression in the South China Sea into perspective by exposing the extraordinary and seemingly limitless hypocrisy of the US government."
Jeremy Hammond, Foreign Policy Journal
"Donald Trump is inadvertently doing his darndest to endow John Pilger's eye-opening polemic The Coming War on China with an air of chillingly urgent topicality."
Neil Young, Hollywood Reporter
"This is a must-watch documentary for anyone interested in Sino-US relations. Whether you are for or against the 'China Threat Theory,' you will find it thought-provoking."
Chien-Kai Chen, Assistant Professor of International Studies, Rhodes College
"[Pilger] is fully aware that China has negotiated the best trade deals in the region, that their vast industrialisation has poisoned the planet and sped up global warming, and that their record on human rights is atrocious. Yet shouldn't we be sitting around a table with them to discuss this, rather than pointing weapons of global destruction at them instead?...A very persuasive piece of filmmaking."
John Parker, Entertainment Focus
"The view from China is threatening. 'If you stood on the tallest building in Beijing and looked out of the Pacific Ocean,' James Bradley, author of The China Mirage, tells Pilger, 'you'd see American warships, you'd see Guam is about to sink because there are so many missiles pointed at China. You'd look up at Korea and see American armaments pointing at China, you'd see Japan, which is basically...a glove over the American fist. I think if I was Chinese I'd have...to worry about American aggressiveness.'"
"Pilger's argument, supported by the talking heads he interviews, is that China's current military expansion should primarily be understood as a defensive response rather than an aggressive one...The great lunacy of all this, he argues, is that the brinkmanship is driven not by America's defensive needs but by the hunt for profits."
Karl Quinn, Sydney Morning Herald
"Pilger interviews Pentagon war planners, members of China's emerging political class and those resisting the presence of US military bases in South Korea for the film, which suggests that the US is seeking to cut off China's access to oil, gas and other raw materials."
"Pilger's take on American militarism and its shocking exploitation of Pacific territories such as the Marshall Islands, where the inhabitants were guinea pigs for sustained nuclear weapons tests, is damning."
Craig Mathieson, Brisbane Times
"A gripping film...a strong corrective to our bland and complacent indifference. ****"
Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian
"(Pilger) remains in the vanguard of journalism, able to eloquently challenge accepted beliefs and in doing so shine a light in corners you suspect other media, who sup from the same trough as those in power, would rather not venture."
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DVD includes SDH captions for the deaf and hard-of-hearing, and scene selection.
The film's website
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... more Reviews
"It sounds like alarmist talk, but over the course of his film, his tenacity for research aims to prove it's anything but."
John Noonan, FilmInk
"A sane, sober, necessary, deeply troubling bucketful of worries."
Euan Ferguson, The Guardian
"Presents an alternative view of American policy in the Pacific that is thought-provoking and...skillfully argued."
F. Swietek, Video Librarian
"What makes the ignorant and outdated perception of a so-called yellow peril so absurd is that never before have the economies of two superpowers been so interdependent."
The (London) Times
"His exposé of the atrocities still being committed there is just part of this far-reaching documentary about the relationship between the US and China since World War II, in light of recent inflammatory statements made by President Trump. Here are stories apparently left untold by the mainstream news media. ***** Five Stars."
Sun-Herald, Sydney; Sunday Age, Melbourne
"Viewers wishing to learn more about China and America's foreign policy and the possibility of a war between the two nuclear powers should watch this film."
Jason Steagall, Library Journal