U.S. says strike hits 20 percent of Syria’s operational aircraft

Battle damage assessment image of Shayrat Airfield, Syria, is seen in this DigitalGlobe satellite image, released by the Pentagon following U.S. Tomahawk Land Attack Missile strikes from Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers, the USS Ross and USS Porter on April 7,… REUTERS

 

The U.S. cruise missile strike on a Syrian air base last week damaged or destroyed 20 percent of Syria’s operational aircraft, as well as fuel and ammunition sites and air defense capabilities, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Monday. Continue reading

China Outlines Plan for Military Buildup on Disputed Island

https://i2.wp.com/freebeacon.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/scarboshoal2.jpg

 

Website reveals future warship deployment to Philippines’ Scarborough Shoal

China’s plan for a new military buildup on a disputed island near the Philippines shows the future deployment of Chinese warships close to where U.S. naval forces will be stationed in the future.

Details of the militarization plan for Scarborough Shoal in the Spratly Islands were obtained by U.S. intelligence agencies over the last several months, according to defense officials. Continue reading

China continued land reclamation in sea despite ‘halt’: expert

China was carrying out land reclamation in contested waters of the South China Sea this month, more than four weeks after saying it had stopped such activity, a US expert said Tuesday, citing recent satellite images.

The evidence of continued dredging in the Spratly archipelago could complicate a visit to the United States by Chinese President Xi Jinping next week, when US concerns about China’s assertive pursuit of territorial claims in Asia are expected to be high on the agenda. Continue reading

China’s first runway in Spratlys under construction

https://i0.wp.com/www.janes.com/images/assets/714/50714/SCS_-_main.jpg

 

Key Points

  • Satellite imagery shows that China has begun building a runway on reclaimed parts of Fiery Cross Reef in the Spratly Islands
  • The imagery, provided by Airbus Defence and Space, also shows China building islands on Subi Reef that if linked up would provide enough land for another airstrip

The 23 March images show a paved section of runway 503 m by 53 m on the northeastern side of Fiery Cross Reef, which China began to turn into an island in late 2014. Paving and ground preparation of other sections of the runway has also begun further along the island. In addition, workers have paved about 400 m by 20 m of apron. Continue reading

China builds military airstrip on disputed island

The newly built facility stretches across Woody Island, part of the Paracel chain, China’s Xinhua news agency said late Tuesday.

The Paracels are also claimed by Vietnam and Taiwan, and tensions between Beijing and Hanoi rose this year over Chinese construction and oil exploration there.

The runway is Beijing’s latest physical assertion of control in the area, two years after it declared a city named Sansha centered on Woody Island — known as Yongxing in Chinese — to administer vast swathes of the South China Sea. Continue reading