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The South China Sea's Gathering Storm

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The South China Sea's Gathering Storm

Old 27th Nov 2020, 10:09
  #721 (permalink)  
 
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In The Times today.
US territory within range of Beijing’s new stealth bomber

A new Chinese stealth bomber will give the country a “truly intercontinental capability” including the ability to strike US territory, leading western analysts have claimed.

Armed with nuclear missiles, the H-20 bomber marks a “major break” from China’s status as only a regional power, the Royal United Services Institute for Defence and Security Studies said in a review of Russian and Chinese air force development.

China has not unveiled the H-20 jet but it is at the centre of sweeping plans to upgrade its air power. The jet is due to replace the H-6 model as a nuclear-capable stealth bomber to rival the American B-2 series, whose wing design helps it to evade detection by radar.

However, the institute said there were “significant questions around China’s ability to produce engines with the dry thrust capacity for a true B-2 class aircraft.” It is nonetheless “fairly far along in development terms,” the report said.

The new bomber, which has been in development since 2016, is said to be capable of flying up to 5,000 miles without refuelling, allowing it to reach beyond the second island chain around China, including Japan, Guam and the US Mariana Islands, from bases on the mainland. Other reports suggest that it could cover more than 7,500 miles, allowing it to strike Hawaii. The American B-2 can travel about 6,000 miles.

Chinese hackers were accused in 2015 of stealing US stealth aircraft technology. Song Zhongping, a former instructor with the People’s Liberation Army, told the
South China Morning Post that the H-20 had been designed to reach US territory as part of China’s nuclear triad, which also includes ground and sea-launched missiles.



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Old 3rd Dec 2020, 08:39
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Old 3rd Dec 2020, 08:58
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So he seems to fear some "Chinese Gorbachev" most? Why fear something when you claim seconds before you will rule the world anyway? Doesn't ad up somehow.
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Old 3rd Dec 2020, 09:55
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Let me die of old age before we crush them.
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Old 3rd Dec 2020, 21:09
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Originally Posted by Lyneham Lad View Post
BFD.
We were in range of Soviet Strategic bombers and missiles throughout the Cold War.
Will the "Chicken Littles" never stop squawking?
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Old 3rd Dec 2020, 21:59
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What they mean is Hawaii is in range of the new Chinese bomber - but mainland China is in range of American bombers from Hawaii, Guam and other forward bases - where China does not possess an equivalent.
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Old 4th Dec 2020, 08:46
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CJCS Milley Predicts DoD Budget ‘Bloodletting’ To Fund Navy

WASHINGTON: In a major speech outlining important strategic shifts for the United States, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, an Army general, today predicted “a lot of bloodletting” in the Pentagon as the military strives to get the Navy the hundreds of new ships it says it needs to confront China.

“I would advocate, and bias going forward, heavy investment” in sea, air and space-centric platforms, Milley said. As for the other priorities, he said, “none of it gets cut to zero; this is a matter of balancing things. It’s a very, very difficult exercise we’re going to have to go through. It’s going to be ruthless, there’s going to be a lot of bloodletting and a lot of stuff left on the floor. We’re gonna have to do that in the coming years — no question about it.”

Milley’s comments indicate the Army is likely to be the loser in the coming budget wars.

There have been rumblings for weeks that the new Navy shipbuilding plan, which calls for a fleet of about 500 ships, would be impossible under current budget projections, leading the Pentagon to eye Army and Air Force accounts to make up the difference.

Milley all but confirmed that.

“I don’t want to reveal my cards,” on the numbers being considered, he said at a virtual Navy Institute event. “But I probably already did by saying we’re a maritime nation. We are, and the defense of the United States depends on air power and sea power primarily. People can say what they want and argue what they want, but that’s a reality.”.....

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Old 4th Dec 2020, 18:06
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"Other reports suggest that it could cover more than 7,500 miles, allowing it to strike Hawaii."

I'm sure those who remember the amazing ranges ascribed to the Tu-22 during arms reduction talks way back will have a sense of deja-vu.

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Old 6th Dec 2020, 10:30
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Interesting article in the Economist re the expansion of the Chinese Coast Guard - highlights:-

THE ZHAOTOU-CLASS cutter may be a lowly coastguard ship. But it is no pushover. At 12,000 tonnes, it is the world’s largest vessel built for such use. It looms over most American or Japanese destroyers. Its roomy deck accommodates two helicopters, a 76mm gun and a thicket of other weaponry. China has two of them. The arrival of the behemoth is intended to make a point: China backs its claims in that area with a panoply of steel. In November China published a draft law that would empower the coastguard to demolish other countries’ structures built on Chinese-claimed reefs, and to board and expel foreign vessels. In some circumstances it could even fire on hostile ships.

In 2013 China merged several civilian maritime law-enforcement agencies into a new unified one, called the Chinese Coastguard Bureau. Five years later this was put under the command of the People’s Armed Police, a paramilitary force that reports to the Central Military Commission, the country’s supreme military body. In effect, this turned China’s coastguard into a branch of the armed forces—much like its counterparts in America and India.

Today China’s coastguard has more than 500 ships. In the region, Japan is a distant second with 373. Others trail far behind. China’s ships have got beefier, too. A decade ago China had just ten vessels with a full-load displacement of at least 1,500 tonnes (about the size of a small warship). By 2015 it had 51 such ships. Today it has 87, says the International Institute for Strategic Studies, a London-based think-tank.

China has reacted huffily to other countries’ concerns about the draft coastguard law. To some extent, it is right to be miffed. Most of the bill’s provisions match those of laws elsewhere and accord with international norms, says Collin Koh of RSIS.

But there is every reason to worry about the Chinese law’s proposed scope. It covers China’s “jurisdictional waters”, a term that the country applies to most of the South China Sea, says Ryan Martinson of the US Naval War College. Most of those waters are claimed by other countries or regarded as part of the global commons. Article 22 of the draft bill would allow China’s coastguard to create “temporary exclusion zones”, potentially cordoning off swathes of open ocean.
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Old 6th Dec 2020, 12:01
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Originally Posted by Lonewolf_50 View Post
BFD.
We were in range of Soviet Strategic bombers and missiles throughout the Cold War.
Will the "Chicken Littles" never stop squawking?
Heck US Territory was in range of Soviet Biplanes in the 1930's, the call the place Alaska..... no doubt there were some doing the same thing then . Texas is going to be bombed by the USSR who take 14 days to reach there to drop 50kgs of bombs.

Last edited by racedo; 6th Dec 2020 at 12:28.
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Old 6th Dec 2020, 12:27
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Originally Posted by ORAC View Post
CJCS Milley Predicts DoD Budget ‘Bloodletting’ To Fund Navy

WASHINGTON: In a major speech outlining important strategic shifts for the United States, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, an Army general, today predicted “a lot of bloodletting” in the Pentagon as the military strives to get the Navy the hundreds of new ships it says it needs to confront China.

“I would advocate, and bias going forward, heavy investment” in sea, air and space-centric platforms, Milley said. As for the other priorities, he said, “none of it gets cut to zero; this is a matter of balancing things. It’s a very, very difficult exercise we’re going to have to go through. It’s going to be ruthless, there’s going to be a lot of bloodletting and a lot of stuff left on the floor. We’re gonna have to do that in the coming years — no question about it.”
Yet again the military planning for another war based on the last one.

Anybody who followed the recent conflict in the Caucuses will see how drone swarms pretty much nullified the ability of the defending army to counter the attacking one.

The lets send a couple of Capital ships to dissuade the enemy worked great as a theory in South China sea before, well that was until 10th December 1941 when Prince or Wales / Repulse met a watery grave.

The next war will need ships able to withstand wave after wave of inexpensive swarmed drones fitted with small exposives that can hit at any time, targeting radar / comms gear etc. The billion $$$ warship will lose to a $20,000 drone.
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Old 6th Dec 2020, 14:36
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The billion $$$ warship will lose to a $20,000 drone.
Who is talking about $B dollar warships? If you read recent posts/threads you’d realise that the USN expansion is going to be heavily based around small, fast drone ships....

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/bu...e-ships-172932
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Old 6th Dec 2020, 17:27
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Originally Posted by ORAC View Post
Who is talking about $B dollar warships? If you read recent posts/threads you’d realise that the USN expansion is going to be heavily based around small, fast drone ships....

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/bu...e-ships-172932
That is not where the USN dollars are going though,.Although the concept gets lots of ink, the funding is peripheral, because the big prestige projects such as the Ford carriers, the SSBN subs and the cruisers suck up every spare penny.
The Navy is cruising for another Pearl Harbor, with its eyes firmly on the past. Some part of it understands that is a problem, but they are a minority, just as the aviation enthusiasts were in the 1930s, only these are even less influential.
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Old 6th Dec 2020, 21:08
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Originally Posted by etudiant View Post
That is not where the USN dollars are going though,.Although the concept gets lots of ink, the funding is peripheral, because the big prestige projects such as the Ford carriers, the SSBN subs and the cruisers suck up every spare penny.
The Navy is cruising for another Pearl Harbor, with its eyes firmly on the past. Some part of it understands that is a problem, but they are a minority, just as the aviation enthusiasts were in the 1930s, only these are even less influential.
I agree.

Pentagon budgets will be confronted by reality that US has not got the $$$ to continually sustain a spend spend spend mentality.

Sadly US feels like Rome, continual escapades far from home while the homeland is falling apart racked by political infighting with seats of Govt distrusted by Govt and wholly ineffective. A tipping point eventually gets reached when Allies doubt you.
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 08:29
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Originally Posted by etudiant View Post
That is not where the USN dollars are going though,.Although the concept gets lots of ink, the funding is peripheral, because the big prestige projects such as the Ford carriers, the SSBN subs and the cruisers suck up every spare penny.
The Navy is cruising for another Pearl Harbor, with its eyes firmly on the past. Some part of it understands that is a problem, but they are a minority, just as the aviation enthusiasts were in the 1930s, only these are even less influential.
Whereas the Chinese have no problems embracing this tech, them not being hidebound by any significant naval history (at least in the modern era). I wouldn't be surprised if they've already developed a fleet of autonomous submarine drones, which routinely hang around major US vessels operating in the area, just in case. The ultimate loitering munition.
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Old 7th Dec 2020, 13:53
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https://www.globaltimes.cn/content/1209245.shtml
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Old 9th Dec 2020, 20:12
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https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/j...ours-d5c3h6ds8

Japan builds new long-range missile to defend itself from neighbours

Japan is to build new long-range cruise missiles to defend itself against attack from China, the latest development in the east Asian arms race and a further erosion of the country’s pacifist constitutional position.

The ministry of defence will request ¥33.5 billion (£240 million) to upgrade an existing ground-to-sea missile into a weapon capable of travelling 300km (186 miles), according to Japanese media. It is also developing a high-speed gliding missile that could fly up to 1,000km, putting both China and North Korea in range.

The conservative ruling Liberal Democratic Party said over the summer that the country should prepare itself to launch pre-emptive strikes on foreign missile bases, a move that will alarm Japan’s neighbours and provoke anxiety among defenders of the postwar “peace constitution”.

The party’s defence committee gave its authority to a growing consensus in government that Japan needed to acquire the ability to destroy North Korean missiles on the ground before they are launched, rather than relying on missile defence systems to take them out in the air.

The immediate priority, however, is to defend Japan’s remote southwestern islands against Chinese attack. Chinese coast guard vessels and patrol planes have been increasingly active around the uninhabited Senkaku Islands, administered by Japan, but claimed by Beijing under the name of the Diaoyus.

Earlier this year, Japan’s Self-Defence Forces deployed Type 12 missiles, which have a range of 100km, to Miyako island, part of the Nansei chain between the big island of Kyushu and Taiwan. This is the weapon that is to be upgraded to a 300km range, and adapted so that it can be fired from ships and planes, to deter and repel naval attack on the Senkakus, 200km away.....
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Old 9th Dec 2020, 22:01
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Originally Posted by etudiant View Post
That is not where the USN dollars are going though,.Although the concept gets lots of ink, the funding is peripheral, because the big prestige projects such as the Ford carriers, the SSBN subs and the cruisers suck up every spare penny.
The Navy is cruising for another Pearl Harbor, with its eyes firmly on the past. Some part of it understands that is a problem, but they are a minority, just as the aviation enthusiasts were in the 1930s, only these are even less influential.
A friend sent me this link. You may find it interesting. Whether or not that wish list will be viewed favorably by the next administration, and the one after that, and the one after that, is anyone's guess.
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Old 9th Dec 2020, 23:47
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Originally Posted by T28B View Post
A friend sent me this link. You may find it interesting. Whether or not that wish list will be viewed favorably by the next administration, and the one after that, and the one after that, is anyone's guess.
A view of these ambitious plans from a former insider: https://www.defensenews.com/opinion/...chard-warship/
He pleads for cost control, but disappointingly offers no steps to achieve it.
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Old 9th Dec 2020, 23:53
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Originally Posted by T28B View Post
A friend sent me this link. You may find it interesting. Whether or not that wish list will be viewed favorably by the next administration, and the one after that, and the one after that, is anyone's guess.
It’s been opined by those who should know (not I) that this will entail the navy getting funds that were earmarked for other services. Let the cat fight move from the eternal simmer to outright open warfare.

Then again, the Biden administration could very well say the current state of the navy is sufficient.
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