Pentagon report highlights Chinese submarine buildup

China’s first domestically built aircraft carrier is seen during its launch ceremony in Dalian. Photo: Reuters/Stringer

 

The large-scale buildup of China’s naval forces is the most visible part of a major rearmament campaign that has been under way for more than a decade. But Chinese development of modern and increasingly quiet submarines poses one of the more serious strategic challenges for the United States and other nations concerned about Beijing’s growing hegemony in Asia.

The increasing size of the People’s Liberation Army Navy fleet of surface vessels captures most international attention, based on the sheer numbers and advanced weapons on an array of new warships. Continue reading

Pentagon report: China advances in taking military control of strategic Pacific sea lanes

People’s Liberation Army (PLA) soldiers patrol Woody Island in the Paracel Archipelago. / Reuters

 

China is using non-military “coercion” in an effort to gain control of strategic waters in the Asian Pacific, the Pentagon said in its annual report to Congress released on June 6.

“China continues to exercise low-intensity coercion to advance its claims in the East and South China Seas,” the report said, adding that Beijing’s tactic involves the use of “timed progression of incremental but intensifying steps to attempt to increase effective control over disputed areas and avoid escalation to military conflict.” Continue reading

Geography and the coming Sino-American war at sea

A member of the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force takes part in an amphibious drill on May 13 during joint military exercises on Guam involving Japan, the U.S., France and Britain that were intended to show support for the free passage of vessels in international waters amid concerns China may restrict access to the South China Sea. | AP

 

Geography is determinate in military plans, a fact that planners understand at all levels, from tactical to strategic. While tailored combat elements may traverse difficult environments on land and at sea, heavily laden logistics craft that follow and enable them can rarely do the same. This is what pushes armies and fleets toward certain immutable routes, resulting in battles occurring at the same locations, over and over, throughout recorded history. Much as the ridge at Megiddo, better known as “Armageddon,” played witness to strife no less than 13 times since the 15th century B.C. because it stood astride the route from Mesopotamia to Egypt, key maritime straits such as the waters of the South China Sea and the Sunda and Malaccan Straits will provide the backdrop for future naval battles. Geography and geopolitics are intermeshed and unavoidable. Unfortunately for China, they sit upon the wrong side of the former and are rather poor at the latter. Western advantages in both must not be squandered. Continue reading

Satellite Images Suggest China Is Arming Strategic South China Sea Base With Missiles

Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy recruits chant slogan during a parade to mark the end of a semester at a military base of the North Sea Fleet, in Qingdao, Shandong province December 5, 2013. (REUTERS/China Daily)

 

Satellite imagery of the People’s Liberation Army’s Yulin Naval Base on Hainan Island in the South China Sea shows the deployment of multiple missile launchers, which observers believe are for launching anti-ship ballistic missiles, reports Defense News.

“The direction in which the launchers are facing leads us to believe these are shore-to-ship missiles,” ImageSat International imagery analyst Amit Gur told reporters. Continue reading

Images emerge of possible new Chinese anti-ship weapon

An image of what appears to be a brochure marketing the ‘ground-effect unmanned aerial vehicle’ appeared on Chinese online forums in early May. (sina.com.cn)

 

China may be developing a new anti-ship weapon that combines technologies derived from developments in cruise missiles and ground-effect vehicles (GEVs).

An image of a brochure marketing the weapon, the latter of which is shown painted in blue Chinese navy camouflage, appeared on Chinese online forums in early May. Continue reading

China may build up to 10 bases for future aircraft carriers, says report

China may be planning to build around 10 new bases for its future aircraft carriers, the state-owned Global Times newspaper reported on 20 April, amid speculation that the Asian country will operate at least six carriers in the coming years. Continue reading

China is building the world’s largest nuclear submarine facility

https://i2.wp.com/www.popsci.com/sites/popsci.com/files/styles/large_1x_/public/images/2017/04/csic_ssn_assembly_hall_2.jpg

In Parallel – The module assembly hall is well equipped, with gantry cranes for lifting SSN modules in position and parallel rails for moving completed hull sections further down the assembly line. Once fully operational, the assembly line could enable China to at least match USN SSN production. [BSHIC]

 

It can build four subs at a time.

Starting later this year, China’s new submarine factory on the Yellow Sea will churn out nuclear-powered attack submarines—also known as SSNs—all but ensuring that the sub program of the People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) will be a deadly global force.

Continue reading

China’s Xi restructures military, consolidates control

China’s President Xi Jinping inspects honour guards during the welcoming ceremony for Netherlands’ King Willem-Alexander outside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, October 26, 2015. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

 

Centred around a new, condensed structure of 84 military units, the reshuffle builds on Xi’s years-long efforts to modernize the PLA with greater emphasis on new capabilities including cyberspace, electronic and information warfare.

All 84 new units are at the combined-corps level, which means commanders will hold the rank of major-general or rear-admiral, the official China Daily reported Wednesday, adding that unit members would likely be regrouped from existing forces given the Chinese military was still engaged in cutting its troops by 300,000, one of the wide-ranging military reforms introduced by Xi in late 2015. Continue reading

China Plans Massive Increase to Marine Corps to Pursue Global Ambitions

Delegates from Chinese People’s Liberation Army / AP

 

China is preparing a five-fold surge to the size of its Marine Corps as Beijing moves to further exert its influence abroad.

The plan would increase the number of Marine Corps personnel from about 20,000 to 100,000 people, the South China Morning Post reported Monday, citing military insiders and experts. The move will be accompanied by cuts to the Chinese military’s land forces in an attempt to modernize the People’s Liberation Army. Continue reading

China stealth fighter enters service as Beijing vows to narrow gap with U.S.

China unveiled its J-20 stealth fighter during an air show in Zhuhai on Nov. 1, 2016. /Reuters

 

As part of its ambitious military buildup aimed at narrowing the gap with the United States, China has put into service its J-20 stealth fighter and vowed to build a “first class” navy and develop a marine corps.

Chinese state television’s military channel confirmed in a March 9 report that the J-20 had now entered service, but gave no other details. Continue reading

Nuclear Submarines and Hypersonic Missiles: China Is Making Game-Changing Weapons Advances

Caption: Chinese navy formation during military drills in the South China Sea on January 2, 2017. (STR/AFP/Getty Images)

 

The United States military could be in “serious trouble” in a face-off against Chinese forces in the South China Sea, according to analyses published this week. China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is making massive gains in its development of two key areas of advanced weaponry: Nuclear submarines and hypersonic missiles.

Alongside these advances, the PLA is demonstrating ever more willingness and resolve to use its military might. Analysts believe these factors could eventually tip the scales of a regional conflict in Beijing’s favor. Continue reading

WARNING TO TRUMP: China to flex military muscle with FIVE HUNDRED warships

As we had learned from previous posts, the PLAN can expand its navy during war, weaponize and mobilize over 172,000 sea vessels.

You can read more about this in the following previous posts:

China using fishing fleets to expand maritime claims: US official

China Prepares Its 172,000 Civilian Ships for War

US Navy’s Challenge in South China Sea? Sheer Number of Chinese Ships

China practices Taiwan invasion with civilian ferries, bomber flights in Bashi Channel

A lot of naysayers would immediately dismiss the threat, however, 172,000 vessels loaded with anti-ship missiles, cruise missiles, ICBMs, or God forbid a nuclear weapon, would be a problem for the U.S. Navy. Shipping containers can easily disguise mobile nukes loaded on freighters. Even half or a quarter of the amount of ships loaded with weapons would keep anyone out that doesn’t want to lose an entire fleet… or more.

 

Donald Trump’s comments over the South China Sea have sparked powerful response from China [Getty]

 

HUNDREDS of warships, including aircraft carriers, nuclear submarines and a destroyer force, could soon be patrolling the Asia–Pacific as tensions between Beijing and Washington reach boiling point.

China is refusing to back down over President Donald Trump’s apparent interest in interfering with the ongoing turf war in the South China Sea.

With Xi Jinping’s nation being economically strong, it has the money and capability to massively expand its armed forces. Continue reading

War With US Becoming A “Practical Reality” Chinese Military Warns

 

In the harshest warning yet that China is actively contemplating a worst case scenario for its diplomatic relations with the US, a senior Chinese military official said that “a war within the president’s term’ or ‘war breaking out tonight’ are not just slogans, they are becoming a practical reality.The remarks, first reported by the SCMP, were published on the People’s Liberation Army website in response to the escalating rhetoric towards China from America’s new administration, and as Beijing braces itself for a possible deterioration in Sino-US ties, with a particular emphasis on maritime security.

The commentary written by an official at the national defence mobilisation department in the Central Military Commission – which has overall authority of China’s armed forces – also called for a US rebalancing of its strategy in Asia, military deployments in the East and South China Seas and the instillation of a missile defence system in South Korea were hot spots getting closer to ignition. Continue reading

China says carrier testing weapons, engaged in ‘scientific research’ in South China Sea

In this image taken from video run by China’s CCTV via AP Video, a J-15 fighter jet takes off from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier Liaoning during a drill in the South China Sea. China confirmed that its aircraft carrier has for the first time conducted drills in the South China Sea with a formation of other warships and fighter jets, a move that could raise concerns among its neighbors. | CCTV VIA AP VIDEO

 

A group of Chinese warships led by its sole aircraft carrier is testing weapons and equipment in exercises this week in the South China Sea that are going to plan, China’s foreign ministry said Wednesday.

Exercises by the ships, in particular the aircraft carrier Liaoning, since last month have unnerved China’s neighbors, especially at a time of heightened strain with self-ruled Taiwan, which Beijing claims as its own, and given long-running territorial disputes in the South China Sea.

China says the Soviet-built Liaoning and the other ships conduct routine exercises that comply with international law. Continue reading

China’s Liaoning carrier battle group conducts first live-fire drill

The PLAN has conducted its first live-fire exercise for the Liaoning carrier battle group, according to Chinese media reports. (China Daily)

 

China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) has conducted its first live-fire exercise for its aircraft carrier battle group, the China Daily newspaper quoted the PLAN as saying in a statement. Continue reading