Friday, January 13, 2017

Detention of the Terrex - the real issue

To solve a problem, we need to understand what is the problem. And if the problem involves several parties, we need all the parties to agree on what that problem is.

Hong Kong has detained the Terrex - the military vehicles owned by the SAF. The vehicles were transhipped through Hong Kong port and were not properly declared according to Hong Kong law.

This may appear to be the issue. But it is not the real issue.

The real issue is the bad relationship between Singapore and China. To solve this problem, the Singapore leaders should address the root of the problem. What made China so angry with Singapore that they instructed Hong Kong to detained the Terrex on this reason?

China has stated that Singapore must abide by the "One China" policy and stop using Taiwan as the training ground. They even offered land in China for Singapore to carry out the training of its soldiers and NS men.

There are two other issues that has not come out in the open. China is annoyed at the stand taken by Singapore on the Trans Pacific Partnership and on the South China Sea dispute.

The approach taken by the Singapore leaders of resolving the matter through the Hong Kong court or international law is not likely to work. It will sour up the relationship further. There will be other issues that will cause disputes in the future.

After recognizing the problem, the next step is to know what we can do. We need to send someone to talk to the officials in China. That person cannot be PM Lee or foreign minister Balakrishnan or defence minister Ng. The three ministers will be unable to talk to the China leaders. They have already caused a lot of distrust.

Could that person be former PM Goh Chok Tong? Quite likely! Or could he be the former foreign minister George Yeo?

We should try it.

Let me take this opportunity to bring out the principles of problem solving:

a) We have to identify the right problem
b) We need to understand the key elements of the problem
c) We have to start with what we know and see if it works.

This principle is illustrated in this video. I encourage people to learn the skill of problem solving. Our PM, foreign minister and defense minister should register for my 1 hour tutorial!


Jonathan Chee said...

Well said!
Thank you so much for your TEARS (Time, Effort And ResourceS) in contributing to Singapore!
We all love our country that is why we use TEARS to ensure that Singapore will have many good years to come, understand!
I bet such good solution cannot never be published by the newspapers just like my reply to point out rubbish being published by ST Forum.
Why the authorities always think that they are right & knows the answer?
Why ordinary citizens cannot have the correct & true solutions?
Recall Mr Teo who took S$35millions from SIA over 12 yrs. Thus is such a GCE 'O'level
much clever than those with PhD, MBA, Chartered a& Certified accountants?
Don't give up, internet is the answer to spread reality.
The Great, Mighty & Awesome Creator of all things knows & someday the truth will be made known to everyone!

Anonymous said...

U are right. LHL is actually not very good at talking.

Yujuan said...

William Cheng's article in the ST hit the nail on the head,
"It is not enough to just pay lip service to the One China principle."
Singapore Govt "need to reflect that in concrete action".
Proven now LKY is the wiser politician to navigate world politics, seems the second Gen's leadership is still wet behind the ears, still harping on international Law and Sovereignty, etc.
The "Natural Aristocracy" are the real daft Singaporeans, not the masses.

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