The Coming War

The Coming War


When Barack Obama met with Xi Jinping during the Chinese president’s first state visit to America, one item probably won’t be on their agenda: the possibility that the United States and China could find themselves at war in the next decade. In policy circles, this appears as unlikely as it would be unwise.

Chinese and Russian media have started suggesting the possibility of a China-U.S. war. While the national news agency in China calls it “inevitable,” a Russian news agency listed a number of indications that it said “proved’ the two nations were heading toward a military conflict.

Clearly, there has been growing diplomatic tension between China and the United States. And according to reports, both countries have been spending lots of money on military preparations.

China’s Xinhua News Agency reported that the present political situation put a question mark on building peaceful coexistence between China and the U.S. “The situation has many people pondering how the two countries can avoid ‘Thucydides’s trap’ — the notion an established power becomes so anxious about the rise of a new power that a struggle leading to war becomes inevitable,” Xinhua reported.

Russia’s Pravda reported that China had conducted a number of military exercises simulating an attack against Taiwan. “Since the U.S. is committed to protecting Taiwan, a real conflict of this nature would almost certainly involve the United States” the Russian news agency predicted.

The U.S. government blames Beijing for theft of the personal data of some 14 million U.S. government workers. According to U.S. authorities, it was “an act of war.” The U.S. says the breach also has compromised background information about intelligence and military personnel.

Pravda gives 11 “harbingers” that apparently demonstrate that China and the United States will be

involved in a war soon. According to the Russian agency, China has developed a “carrier killer” missile specifically designed for destroying U.S. aircraft carriers. The Chinese navy is also developing ballistic missile submarines that are “extremely quiet.”

John Pilger, film-maker and award winning journalist,is crowdfunding his new documentary, ‘The Coming War between America and China’, about the perceived threat to the US from China.

John Pilger believes we are in the midst of a cold war more dangerous than the one he grew up with, comparing the raw propaganda of the prior to what we’re seeing now, with a ‘real possibility’ of a nuclear war. He compares it to Iraq, because both involved ‘fiction,’ the idea that Russia is attacking the West. He says oil prices were driven down by agreement between the US and Saudis, to wreck the Russian economy. He says it was NATO and the US that took over Ukraine, to the point that Joe Biden’s son is on the board of Ukraine’s biggest private gas provider. At a meeting in Yalta in September 2013, the ‘takeover of Ukraine was planned’ by prominent politicians and multinationals. There was a ‘coup stage-managed by the Obama administration,’ and blame shifted to Russia, who acted purely defensively. He says there is a ‘real prospect of war’ with a nuclear power and strong conventional military, and Putin has now started ‘talking red lines’ himself. He describes ‘extraordinary propaganda’ promoting tension and demonising Russia, which ‘may end up being self-fulfilling.’

The Coming War between America and China – the new documentary project from John Pilger

John: Journey’ is an overworked word these days, but I can think of none other to describe the making of a documentary film. Ten years ago, a film of mine could be made in six months, even less. The main work was the research, the journalism. Whenever I felt confident I had the basis of a ‘story’, I would go to the ITV Network in the UK and seek a broadcast commission. If that was forthcoming, ITV would fund the production. The difference now is that I, the film-maker, must raise most of the production money. Also, my documentaries have changed considerably in recent years. They are now made for the cinema as well as TV, and for the internet.

I’ve made three films this way, The War on Democracy (2007), The War You Don’t See (2010) and Utopia (2013). Utopia took more than two years to make.

In raising the money for these films, I’ve been fortunate to find sympathetic philanthropists and foundations, and persuade them to contribute without attaching any editorial strings. But these benefactors are rare, and tracking them down is probably the hardest part of film-making now and, frankly, not the kind of work I ever saw myself doing – I’ve always preferred simply to do the job I knew – journalism.

I’ve lately embarked on another film journey — this will be my 60th documentary. ITV has commissioned the film, and provided seed money. The working title is The Coming War Between America and China,  and the film will tell the largely unreported story of a new US strategic policy known as ‘the pivot to Asia’. In a nutshell, what this means is that the US is  preparing for a new provocative cold war that has every chance of becoming a hot war. Washington has begun to move its main missile and naval forces into the Asia-Pacific in order to surround and ‘confront’ China, whose extraordinary economic rise in recent years is regarded in Washington as a threat to American dominance. For obvious reasons, I won’t lay out here the ‘where, what and why’. Suffice to say the film will be shot in some surprising places where I’ll meet and interview extraordinary people. Above all, it will be revealing: that is assured.

Having read this far, you’re sure to guess that this message is heading towards another modern cliché — an ‘ask’. My colleagues at Dartmouth Films and I need to raise at least £60,000 or $100,000 in order to start making the film. This money won’t meet unforeseen costs or pay for distribution and promotion, but it will allow for the promised philanthropy, on which the bulk of the film’s funding depends, to come on stream and for filming to begin.

And that’s where you come in.

This is known as ‘crowd funding’ and, as you can guess, it’s my first day in this strange new world. If you can give £5 – that’s about $10 – no more – I’ll be grateful. For your part, you’ll have made a vital contribution to a film whose disclosure and warning are, I believe, urgently needed. I’m hopeful you’ll be proud of the result. Thank you.

John Pilger
December 2014

It’s not just about the money! If you can’t contribute, you can help us enormously by:

TELLING your friends, family, colleagues, neighbours and contacts about this film and share this page:

SHARE it through Facebook

SHARE through Twitter with our handle @thecomingwar

SIGN UP to our mailing list for updates on the campaign and the film as it progresses

The production team for THE COMING WAR brings years of experience on award-winning, high-quality documentaries made for cinema, television, DVD and online.

The team includes:


John Pilger is a renowned war correspondent, author and film-maker. He has made 59 documentary films, and is only one of two to win British journalism’s highest award twice. He has won television Academy Awards in the UK and the US. He won the Sydney Peace Prize, “for fearless challenges to censorship in any form”. Harold Pinter said, “John Pilger unearths, with steely attention to facts, the filthy truth and tells it as it is”.


Christopher Hird is a leading figure in UK independent documentary making. He is the founder and managing director of Dartmouth Films, which has pioneered new ways of funding, producing and distributing documentaries in the UK, as well as promoting the work of new and emerging filmmakers. Among the films which Christo has executive produced: Black Gold (2006), The End of the Line (2009), The Flaw (2011) Fire in the Blood (2012), McCullin (2013) and Still the Enemy Within (2014). He is a former chair of the Sheffield International Documentary Festival and was the founding chair of the Channel Four Britdoc Foundation. He is currently a trustee of the Wincott Foundation, One World Media  and the Centre for Investigative Journalism.


Sandra Leeming has worked with Christopher Hird since 1994 and shares his passion for producing documentaries which aspire to challenge, educate and bring about social change.

As Head of Production she manages all of Dartmouth’s documentary film projects which range from small low-budget docs made by first-time directors to large-budget feature docs for international broadcast and release. She enjoys meeting the challenges that both size projects can bring. She supports the development of new talent and unearthing new approaches to production processes.

Sandra Line Produced Black Gold, The End of the Line, The Battle for Barking, How to Re-establish a Vodka Empire, Cocaine Unwrapped as well as John Pilger’s The War You Don’t See and Utopia.

She series produced The World Tomorrow with Julian Assange and is currently working on The World Today with Tariq Ali.

Please note: As is common with the perks offered in crowd funding campaigns, an element of the contribution is a donation and will be identified as such on a VAT receipt.

If you require a VAT receipt, please email




Along with thanks and compliments to the sources for the shared data

Creative Commons Copyright © Arrested Developments 2015



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