A truly mysterious event happened
in September 2021.
It is, on the late night of September
16th, China suddenly applied for
membership in the TPP.
This event is extremely mysterious.
The reason why it is mysterious is
that the hurdles for joining the TPP,
which consists of Western Democracies
of 11 countries, are extremely high and
there are many strict rules.
And in the current state of China, they
are far from being able to join it. China,
who knows in details about the TPP’s
mechanics and rules, must have known
So, did China apply for membership, even
though they knew from the beginning that
they couldn’t join the TPP?
It is extremely mysterious, but I have no
choice to think so.
In other words, despite knowing the fact
that China cannot join the TPP from the
beginning, they have filed an application
for membership in the TPP.
China suddenly announced that on the
night of September 16th.
In the background of that, there may be
some imminent significant change or
reason for China.
What is that reason or change?
And where is the true intention of China?
In this Article, I would like to think about
What kind of Economic Agreement
is the TPP
It was late last year (November 2020) that
China first showed its willingness to join the
At this time, President Xi Jinping participated
in APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation)
online and stated “Actively consider participating
in the TPP.” That was the beginning.
Since then, China has long been in talks
with TPP member states. However, talks
did not progress and the conditions for
China to join were not met.
Now, I would like to see what kind of
Agreement the TPP is.
Also, what are the high hurdle regulations
that is set up there?
The TPP is an abbreviation for “Trans-Pacific
It is an Economic Partnership Agreement
originally formed under the goal of
“Building freedom and fair rules
between the United States and
Japan and other countries surrounding
the Pacific Ocean, and eliminating
Tariffs that hinder trade.”
Initially, the TPP was formed between
12 countries with the United States
and Japan at the center, Australia,
Brunei, Canada, Chile, Malaysia,
Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore
However, after that, the United States
became the Trump administration
The reason for the withdrawal was that
the Trump administration insisted that
“Economic Agreements must be made
individually between the two countries.“
Therefore, TPP member countries
become 11 and it became “TPP 11.”
2021 was exactly the year when Japan
was the presidency.
The role of the presidency is to decide
the agenda based on the international
situation at that time, lead the discussion
as the chair during the meeting, and finally
disseminate the contents of the meeting
to the world.
At that year, on September 16, 2021,
China suddenly offered to apply for
However, as I said earlier, the TPP has
many strict rules for China. The main
contents of the rule are listed below.
① Protection of intellectual property
rights and free data distribution,
② Elimination of nearly 100% of tariffs
③ Restriction of unfair subsidies to
④ Provisions to protect workers’ rights,
such as the elimination of forced labor
Any of these items is a high hurdle for
Reasons why China cannot
join the TPP (1)
For example, regarding ① “Protection
of intellectual property rights and
free data distribution” and
③“Restriction of unfair subsidies to
the Chinese government is currently
providing large subsidies to its
state-owned enterprises and providing
various preferential treatment.
It also strictly regulates the
movement of data held by companies
across national borders.
This alone is expected to make it difficult
for China to join the TPP, and in order to
join it, these things must be improved.
(According to the provisions of the TPP,
the consent of all member states is
required when a new country joins
the TPP. For instance, if there is even
one country that opposes ① and ③,
China’s membership will not be
Reasons why China cannot
join the TPP (2)
Next, about ② “Elimination of
nearly 100% of tariffs.”
Last year 2020 was the year
when coronavirus infection became
a global pandemic. Australia once
asked China this year to investigate
the source of the coronavirus
Immediately after that, China imposed
high tariffs of around 200% on some
imported products, such as Australian
wine and barley, and also restricted
For that treatment, the Australian
Government has filed a lawsuit with
the WTO, and at a later date,
China also has filed a lawsuit with the
WTO for some of its imports from
Australia. And even now, they are in
struggle on this matter.
This fact is If China joins the TPP
in the future, will it be possible to
continue to “strictly adhere to nearly
100% tariff elimination” for other
member countries under any
That will be the point issue.
If China seems to change the amount
of tariffs significantly due to various
political and social changes, it is less
likely that the agreement of member
states will be obtained.
Human rights issues in
Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous
Reasons why China cannot
join the TPP (3)
Next, regarding ④ “Provisions to protect
workers’ rights, such as the elimination
of forced labor,”
China is currently at odds with countries
around the world, centered on the United
States, over the treatment of residents of
the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region.
China argues that the Uighur issue is
“A Self-government issues in own country”
and that it is in a position of
non-intervention in domestic affairs.
However, the US Parliament and others
consider the treatment of the Chinese
government on the residents of China’s
Uygur Autonomous Region as clearly
“A Human Rights violation.”
To put it shortly, China is unlikely to get
unanimous consent from the TPP member
states unless it shows improvement in
this Uygur Autonomous Region issue.
Ask again, why did China apply
for membership in the TPP?
So, getting back to the first Question —
Due to the above circumstances, TPP
has a number of rules that make it
difficult for China to join and even though
they know that it is unlikely that it will be
able to join the TPP, why did China apply
And why did China do that at this time?
There are many views in the world on it.
One of the views is “The reason China
has applied for membership in the TPP
is that they have applied in order to
counter several western Military Alliances
centered on the United States that are
increasing pressure on China’s military
buildup in recent years.”
The Military Alliance centered on the
United States refers to AUKUS (The three-
country military alliance) of the United
States, the United Kingdom, and Australia)
and QUAD (The four-country strategic talks)
of Japan, the United States, India, and
Both are Alliances established to ensure
the security of the Asia-Pacific region.
Among them, AUKUS is a Military Alliance
among the three countries of the United
States, the United Kingdom, and Australia.
The inauguration was announced on
September 15, 2021.
It was the United Kingdom that proposed
the establishment, and it is said that the
United Kingdom had a desire to seek
a way of trade in Asia after leaving the EU.
QUAD is not a military alliance, but a
Quadrilateral Security Dialogue, which
refers to talks between the four countries
of Japan, the United States, India, and
Australia, which have strategic alliances.
The main purpose of the talks is to
develop diplomatic arrangements that
correspond to the economic and political
power of the ever-growing China.
“China, which is concerned about the
formation of such a military siege against
China, has applied for membership in the
TPP in order to divide those Military
Alliances.” — That is the view.
There is also a view that “China has
indicated its intention to join the TPP
as a stepping stone to establish Leadership
in the Asia-Pacific region.”
Currently, the United States is not
a member of the TPP, so if China joins,
China could take the economic initiative
in this region.
And in the future, it can serve as a
shield of defense against “The Military
Alliances of the Western countries
surrounding China” as described above.
I disagree with the reason that China
applied for membership in the TPP in
the Asia-Pacific region with the intention
to “divide” Western countries’ Dialogues
Perhaps I don’t think China originally had
the intention of “Dividing.”
Or, I’m also negative about the intention
to establish military and economic
leadership in the Asia-Pacific region.
Given China’s mighty economic and
military power, it may be unavoidable for
neighboring countries to interpret
“There was such an intention” as a result.
But even if there was, I think that is not
the main reason why China has decided
to apply for membership in the TPP this
As another view, there is the view that
“China applied for membership in the
TPP with Taiwan in mind.”
Indeed, there is the fact that China is
currently pushing towards the achievement
of “One China,” which states that “China
and Taiwan are one nation.”
However, I think that Taiwan’s problem has
nothing to do with the reason why China
applied for membership in the TPP this
Recently, “The One China” and “Taiwan Issue”
have rapidly come up to the forefront.
However, this is because, immediately after
China applied for membership in the TPP,
Taiwan applied for membership in the TPP.
(After China applied for membership in the
TPP on September 16, Taiwan submitted
an application for membership on
That’s why many Chinese fighter planes
invaded the Air Defense Identification Zone
(ADIZ) over Taiwan, and the confrontation
problem between “Taiwan and China” has
been greatly highlighted.
Before Taiwan applied for membership in
the TPP, China didn’t make much noise on
the Taiwan issue.
Therefore, I believe that China’s application
for membership in the TPP this time, was
not because of the Taiwan issue.
The true intention of China
So what was the real intention of China
applying for membership in the TPP?
First of all, from the above-mentioned
“Reasons why China cannot join the
TPP (1) (2) (3),” it is clear that China cannot
to join the TPP in the current state.
Even though China knew that fact, China
applied for membership.
I think that means that there had been even
more important things for China than
“whether or not they can join.“
What on earth is that?
In conclusion, I think that was one point
that “They wanted to create a clue to
build a strong cooperative relationship
with Western countries.“
China needed some medium to show their will
– the will of wishes to build partnerships – to
countries in the Asia-Pacific region including
the United States.
It happened there, that there was a
convenient framework of “Economic
Partnership Agreement” called the TPP.
However, for China, it did not have to be
Any other agreement, treaty, anything was
fine for China, if there is a medium that can
express the intention that “They want to build
a strong cooperative relationship with Western
They probably thought as follows:
If China makes the manifestation of intention
in the form of “Application for membership in
the TPP” now, even if they couldn’t join now,
it could be a strong stepping stone (foundation),
when they build a strong partnership with the
Western world someday.
Also, if they apply it now, they can request
or consult in the future, with current TPP
member countries with the subject
“Hope to cooperate with China.”
And, while discussing them, they will be
able to build strong bonds and relationships
of trust with each country.
China would have expected that possibility
So why come at this time now, did China
suddenly need to build a strong partnership
with countries in the Asia-Pacific region?
Simply put, it is because the possibility of
that Mainland China could be attacked from
behind, has increased rapidly at this time.
Where on earth does that “Attack from
behind” mean an attack from?
It is a threat from a vast region from the
Middle East to India, Southeast Asia and
Africa, including Afghanistan.
As we all know, the US military withdrew
completely from Afghanistan on August 31,
2021 this year.
This event, in fact, changed today’s
international situation into another world
China’s and Russia’s reaction to
Afghanistan’s withdrawal of US
Going back a few months ago, when the
U.S. military withdrew from Afghanistan
on August 31st, how did China and Russia
I think many people thought, “China and
Russia will be pleased, since their Rival,
America has disappeared from that part
of the Eurasian continent.“
Also, many people may be still thinking so.
But the facts are the other way around,
they got angry.
The reason is, “They left behind heavy
luggage and went away. America is
irresponsible !! “
That’s their claim.
On July 29, China’s Defense Ministry
spokesman Wu Qian made an unsatisfied
allegation against the US administration,
which decided to withdraw all troops from
“The United States is responsible for the
situation in Afghanistan and should not
run away and leave heavy luggage in
Also, according to several diplomatic
sources, it is said that Russia also
expressed dissatisfaction with the hasty
withdrawal of US troops.
After that, President Putin attended
the joint summit of “SCO (Shanghai
Cooperation Organization)” and
“the Security Treaty Organization of
the former Soviet Union countries”
held in Tajikistan in Central Asia on
October 17th, and said as follows:
“When the United States withdrew from
Afghanistan, they left with Pandora’s box
“The contents of the box are full of
problems associated with terrorism,
drug trafficking, criminal organizations,
and religious radical organizations.”
President Putin is deeply concerned
about the movement of extremist
and criminal organizations in this region,
including Afghanistan after the withdrawal
of US troops.
“In the past, the movement of extremist
organizations was suppressed because
the US military was stationed, but now
that suppression has been lifted and
many problems are occurring.”
So what about China?
China has so far maintained good
diplomatic relations with the Taliban
administration in Afghanistan after
the US military left.
The Chinese government has provided
3 million doses of coronavirus vaccine,
pledged financial support, and has been
announcing support to the Taliban
administration in Afghanistan one after
However, while developing such friendly
diplomacy, China is also carefully preparing
On September 10, a large Chinese military
transport plane landed at a military base in
Orenburg Oblast, southern Russia.
This is in order to participate in a
Joint Military Exercise by eight SCO
member countries centered on
Russia and China.
China has sent 558 Elite Troops and
130 Military Vehicles.
The purpose of the joint military exercise
is only one, A Future Counter-Terrorism
However, China today does not have the
Remaining Capacity to send troops to
rule Afghanistan like the United States
and the former Soviet Union.
While China develops friendly and
supportive diplomacy against the
Taliban administration in Afghanistan,
they must minimize the impact in the
event of an emergency on the other
To that end, military preparedness
and preparation are essential.
If a densely populated country like
China is attacked by a terrorist
organization, even with the mighty
military power of China, great damage
will be expected.
They will think:
“These terrorist organizations are
organizations that the US military could
not eradicate even with huge war costs
and troops. No matter how powerful the
army is in China, it is wonder if China
could win against these terrorist
The US military has spent $ 500 billion
on the Iraq War and the rule of
Afghanistan in the first five years since
the start of the Iraq War in 2003.
It also resulted in the casualties of
thousands of American soldiers.
Since then, even greater war costs have
been incurred until the withdrawal of
all US troops from Afghanistan on
August 31, 2021.
Still, all extremist organizations could
not be eradicated.
“If we are attacked and became fighting,
China will not lose, but how far can it
protect the land that is continuous and
densely populated? “
“What is certain is that there will be many
In addition, if there are casualties,
the situation may loosen the foundation
of the administration.
In the minds of Chinese leaders, this kind
of thing may continuously being asked.
The Chinese government is ostensibly
insisting that they are maintaining good
diplomatic relations with the Taliban
administration. But now it’s good, however
its unknown what will happen in the future.
Not limited to the Taliban Administration,
what the current Administration of China is
in mind, is a deep suspicion, distrust, and
fear of human nature itself.
In their long history of the past, Chinese
people have received Tragic Aggressions
many times and had bitter experiences.
So they’ll be able to understand intuitively.
China is the nation with a long history that
is nearly twice that of Japan.
If human – powerful people – gain the power,
and the situation changes, man may invade
other nations by abandoning even tightly
signed interstate treaties and friendship
treaties very easily and unilaterally.
They know that empirically.
Now, what does China and Russia think
about in the face of the vast area after
the US military has left?
Let’s think about it.
Face of the Taliban administration
Now, let’s take a look at face of the
Taliban administration, which took
control of Afghanistan after the
withdrawal of US troops.
On September 7, Taliban administration
spokesman Zabifra Mujahid announced
the appearance of Taliban interim
The Taliban administration has so far
announced that it will “strive to establish
a comprehensive government that
represents everyone in Afghanistan.”
A comprehensive government means
establishing a government that recognizes
the human rights of many people, including
But far from being comprehensive, it was
an exclusive personnel affair that only
accepted the Taliban.
It is unclear what will happen in the future.
For example, the face of Mr. Shirajudin
Haqqani, who was appointed Minister of
the Interior, is used in the wanted poster of
the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI),
which announced a $ 5 million bounty.
In addition, the strong Taliban rulers of the
1990s are returning as executives in the
administration, having their thick beards.
Persons imprisoned in the Guantanamo
Bay Depot (1) in the United States or
blacklisted in the United States and the
In addition, the warlords on the battle front
who have troubled the US military in recent
months / Combatants of 100 battles,
A self-proclaimed pacifist at the negotiating
table. It also includes people who have
traveled to the capitals of each region,
promising the establishment of a new
administration called the Taliban 2.0.
These people form the leadership of
the Taliban administration.
(BBC News September 9th)
(1) Guantanamo Camp――
A US Southern Command containment
camp located at Guantanamo Bay Naval
Base in Cuba. It was established in 2002
during the Bush Administration. During
the war in Afghanistan and the war in Iraq,
those suspected of being involved in
terrorism or having any information by
the U.S. military have been forcibly taken
here and numerous have been detained.
However, it has been criticized for being
an illegal detention that violates the
“Fourteenth Amendment to the United
States Constitution,” which provides for
the improper process of law, and the Cuban
government is demanding the return of the
Remarks of Mark Milley, Chairman
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, at the
At a hearing of the US Senate on
September 28, Mark Milley, Chairman
of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, commented
on the future situation in Afghanistan:
“The Taliban was and still is a terrorist
organization and has not yet declined
its relationship with the extremist
organization Al Qaeda.”
“The rallying of al-Qaeda and ISIS (Islamic
State Group) who want to attack the
United States is a fairly realistic possibility.
In ungoverned areas, their conditions for
activity may be met (formed) within the
next 12 months to 3 years.“
After the U.S. military withdrew from
Afghanistan, such a tense situation
continues from Afghanistan to the
Middle East and Africa.
Under such circumstances, I believe
that the strongest and best way China
has chosen to defend their territory was
to build strong partnerships with countries
in the Asia-Pacific region.
That’s why China came at this time,
rushed to apply for membership in the
I believe that China knew that building
strong partnerships with countries in
the Asia-Pacific region was
“The Strongest Security.”
I think Chinese leaders have learned
such wisdom from the lessons of their
From this point of view, China now is
far from a threat for the United States,
Japan and Australia, it can be said its
a great time of opportunity to build true
China is currently carrying a large
baggage, “They must defend the behind
of the Chinese continent.”
Therefore, it can be said that China feels
the need to build partnerships with
countries in the Asia-Pacific region, even
albeit with some concessions.
Therefore, for the United States, Europe,
Japan and Australia, it is a time to speak
up and negotiate with China.
I think that the Chinese side will have
a listening attitude even if they negotiate
with a little bullish.
After the US military withdrew from
Afghanistan, China entered a completely
different world of situations.
However, thinking from these
perspective, it would become the
existence of extremist organizations
that made China strongly aware
of the need to build strong partnerships
with countries in the Asia-Pacific region.
Regarding the extremist organization,
we must never expand this force
excessively in the future.
This is because if they expand the power
like the former Islamic State of ISIS,
there is a risk targeting not only China
but also civilized countries such as
the United States, Europe and Japan.
What the U.S. Army Chairman of the
Joint Chiefs of Staff, Miller, is concerned
above, is also that point.
If that happens, tragic terrorist attacks
can occur in various parts of the world.
War can also occur. A catastrophe
could cover the world again.
But now, the extremist organizations
scattered throughout this region-from
Afghanistan to the Middle East and Africa-
have not yet become such a major force.
So it’s important to keep their power
small, or to suppress their power to
a level that it does not harm the
countries of the world.
Alternatively, it is important to keep
the existence of extremist organizations
down to the extent that they suppress
“the various excessive acts” of China and
other countries in the international
Then, after finishing the role of such
coordination, bringing those forces to
And in those areas as well-from
Afghanistan to the Middle East, Africa-
Peace and Prosperity must come to.
From now on, it is necessary to do such
a thing without using any army nor
modern weapons of high killing ability
To achieve that, we cannot send US
troops to this area again.
If US troops were dispatched to this
area, as in a secondary disaster at
a disaster site, many casualties could
again occur to the inhabitants of this
area and military soldiers.
Also, once the US military has
withdrawn completely, they will not do
that. President Biden has declared that
“The Era of large-scale military operations
to remake another country is over.“
So what should we do?
From now on, it is time to utilize the
power of specialized law in each
specialized field and the Law of Origin,
and deal with the problem by
“The Power of Law.”
Especially, the Law of Origin has the
power to properly position the power of
specialized law in each field, such as
politics, economic and diplomatic law,
or international law, and to make them
the Law of Origin
When utilizing “The measures that use
the power of law,” all the laws that exist
in this world have greater or lesser, the
power to expand and strengthen the
power of human good deeds and good
For example, science law, medical law,
social law, law of politics, economics,
diplomacy, business, and till many
other rules around civilian life, all laws
expand and strengthen the power of
people’s good deeds in each respective
field, and they protect the lives of
For instance, laws of science and
technology have expanded so far
the power of human Muscles and
have developed transport vehicles,
automobiles, home appliances, robots,
and so on.
In addition, the law of science has
expanded the power of the human
Brain, and develop and open the world
of high-speed communication lines and
digital technology that make full use of
AI, computers, and IT.
Also, it expanded the power of human
Sensory Organs, developed sensors,
touch panels, electronic cards, etc.,
and made electronic payments possible.
In addition, the “power of law” of social
law may expand and strengthen the
wisdom of lawyers and solve various
Also, the power of law acts on behalf
of the good power of people and
protect society from crime or to
Similarly, the power of medical law
expands and strengthens the
wisdom power of doctors and treat
various illnesses and intractable
In this way, all the laws in the world
have more or less the power to
expand and strengthen the power
of human beings.
Of course, those powers are not
perfect, but they expand and
strengthen the power of human
goodness and wisdom, in their
respective fields of specialization.
With such “power of law,” we will solve
the problems that arise in the
international community mentioned
However, in solving complex and
profound problems that occur in
the international community,
it is necessary to use the specialized
laws of each specialized field as
mentioned above, and at the same
time, it is required “a stronger Law”
that functions as a more holistic,
widespread and more harmonious
That is the existence of
“The Law of Origin.“
What is the Law of Origin?
It is the law that reaches the origin
of all phenomena and is controlling
Use the power of this Law.
The Law of Origin is also called
Myō-Hō. “Myō” means ” the highest”
and “Hō” means law.
It represents the fundamental law
that is the main body of all the laws
of the world.
In other words, by using this Law of
Origin jointly with the specialized law
of each specialized field, we lead
various complicated and profound
problems that occur in the international
community to a solution.
Characteristics and processes
when the Law of Origin solves
Next, when you work on the Law of
Origin and exert the power of this law,
I would like to talk in a more concrete
form, about “What kind of process
does the power of the Law of Origin
take to solve social problems?”
The Law of Origin, as I said above, is
a law that is penetrated to the origin
of the phenomenon world and
manages the “Creation and
Annihilation” of all phenomena.
Therefore, when you work on that
law with the act of Mercy and Wisdom (1),
various phenomena and events occur
that have the work to “Correct the
behavior that is being performed in
a biased manner in today’s society
and the world.”
That is, by working on the Law of
Origin through the act of mercy and
wisdom, the Law of Origin causes
“The Events that correct biased acts
in the world” in society.
For example, if an act has an excessive
“overkill,” phenomena and events occur
in an attempt to correct that overkill.
In this case, what is “the act of Mercy
and Wisdom” you perform?
Why, when you work by the acts of
Mercy and Wisdom, the power of
the Law of Origin is exerted and
work to solve various social
I will summarize it in the following
(1) Acts of Mercy and Wisdom:
① The act of Mercy is “The act of
sending mercy to all living existence.”
Mercy has two meanings: “Give comfort
and remove suffering.” In practice,
the mercy action is achieved by calling
“Send mercy to all living existence”
in your heart, and thinking it strongly.
Since there is a fact that all living
existence coexist with non-living
existence (materials or energy),
sending mercy to all living existence
leads to also sending mercy to
② The act of Wisdom is achieved by
reading the correct information about
the Law of Origin well, thinking it well,
understanding it well, and talking about
it to others well, etc.
The information of the Law of Origin
can be found in Lotus Sutra, the
scripture of the Law of Origin.
However, in order to read this scripture,
you need a correct manual. The correct
manual means the manual explained
under the premise that “Lotus Sutra is
the scripture that the Law of Origin was
preached.” Please use this site articles
as the manual.
③ Why when you work on the Law of
Origin with acts of Mercy and Wisdom,
will the power of the Law of Origin be
First of all, regarding the relationship
between Mercy and Wisdom,
the important point is that if you read
the information of the Law of Origin well,
think it well and understand it well,
Wisdom will surely be exerted.
Wisdom here refers to that wisdom.
In other words, by the power of such
wisdom, you can emit “a profound and
powerful Mercy” for the first time.
That is the “Relationship between Mercy
In next, when you send such mercy to
all living existence, why is the power
of the Law of Origin exerted?
The reason is that the essential
characteristic of the Law of Origin is
This is the same as the essence of the
phenomenon world is Mercy.
For instance, when looking at the
progress of the “Food Chain” and
“Preservation of Species” in nature,
there is an appearance of Mercy in
nature that many animals and plants
support the lives of other creatures by
their own death. Individually, it has the
cruel side of “The law of the jungle,”
but as a whole, it reveals
“The Appearance of Mercy” that the
seeds are preserved. In Africa and
elsewhere, if herbivores do not become
food for carnivores with their own death,
the number of herbivores will increase
too much and the species will extinct.
Even animals and plants, preserve other
species of life by doing mercy in this way,
and contribute to the maintenance of life
as a whole.
Moreover, if human beings are deeply
conscious and send mercy to all living
existence, human can be in line with
the Mercy, which is an essential
characteristic of the Law of Origin,
and the power of this law will be
exerted. That is the principle.
④ In this case, the Law of Origin will
not be exerted its power unless you
work on by your own good deeds,
the acts of Mercy and Wisdom.
This is another major principle of this
The Law of Origin exists one for every
citizen, but in practice, the power of
this law will not be exerted unless you
practice it yourself. The power of the
Law of Origin may be exerted when
others practice it, but the power of
the Law of Origin exerted by others
follows the practice of your Mercy
In this sense, your mercy and wisdom
practice is in the center and you are
the only owner of the Law of Origin..