Posts Tagged ‘China’

Naval War College Professor Updates Congress on China’s Military Capabilities

March 1, 2017

An expert on the faculty of U.S. Naval War College (NWC) in Newport, Rhode Island, updated Congress on China’s current military capabilities, possible intentions, and what he sees as the future options in the region at a governmental committee meeting, Feb. 23.

Andrew S. Erickson, professor of strategy at NWC in the China Maritime Studies Institute testified before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission (USCC) in the Dirksen Senate Office Building in Washington.

“My key points are, with its ambitious ASBM (anti-ship ballistic missile) development, China is challenging U.S. Asia-Pacific interests and military influence in new ways,” said Erickson. “This is part of a much larger Chinese counter-intervention effort that is advancing significantly regardless of precise ASBM capabilities or limitations. While China’s missiles pose potential challenges to U.S. forces, ensuring that they can be targeted effectively is expensive and creates growing space-based electromagnetic spectrum vulnerabilities that can be exploited.”

The hearing was co-chaired by Carolyn Bartholomew and Sen. James Talent of Missouri.

Erickson went on to say select regions are particularly active for the Chinese military right now.

“In what it (China) considers the near seas (the Yellow Sea, East China Sea, and the South China Sea), Beijing enjoys powerful synergies and advantages vis-a-vis the disputed sovereignty claims it pursues there,” Erickson testified, “increasingly in defiance of regional stability and international laws and norms, and supported by precision-targeted systems designed to challenge American sea control and make American intervention risky.”

The panel was titled “China’s Hypersonic and Maneuverable Re-Entry Vehicle Programs” and also included James Acton, co-director of Nuclear Policy Program and senior fellow, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; and Mark Stokes, executive director, Project 2049 Institute.

In closing, Erickson gave USCC some direction on where U.S. policy might go next.

“U.S. policy makers should enhance efforts at developing tailored countermeasures, particularly concerning electronic warfare,” Erickson said. “[The U.S. should also] attempt to ensure that China doesn’t develop Scarborough Shoal into a key targeting node in the South China Sea, and increase U.S. Navy ship numbers to avoid presenting China with an over-concentrated target set.”

Video of the event is available at

The USCC was created by the United States Congress in October 2000 with the legislative mandate to monitor, investigate, and submit to Congress an annual report on the national security implications of the bilateral trade and economic relationship between the United States and the People’s Republic of China, and to provide recommendations, where appropriate, to Congress for legislative and administrative action.

Former Air Force Secretary Accuses China

January 8, 2009


Aviation Calendar 2009

Aviation Calendar 2009

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 Former Air Force Secretary Thomas Reed has co-authored a new book that makes the case that China has intentionally proliferated nuclear technology to dangerous regimes such as Pakistan and North Korea since the 1980s and is still debating internally whether to continue the flow of materials and know-how abroad. US News and World Report reported Jan. 2 that Reed’s work, The Nuclear Express: A Political History of the Bomb and Its Proliferation, claims that China even tested the first Pakistani bomb in 1990 for the Pakistani regime of Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto. This test and additional Chinese help, Reed told the magazine, enabled the Pakistanis to respond within three weeks of India’s nuclear test in 1998 with their own underground nuclear test.

“Soft Ribs and Strategic Weaknesses”

December 18, 2008
Aviation Calendar 2009

Aviation Calendar 2009

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Chinese military strategists describe the US military dependence on space assets and information technology as a strategic weakness they mean to exploit, according to a new report (large file) from the Congressionally chartered US-China Economic and Security Review Commission. The report asserts that the investments China’s military is making in space and cyber operations “could provide it with an asymmetric capability enabling it to prevail in a conflict with US forces.”

DOD Delays Policy Talks with China until Obama Takes Power

November 24, 2008

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The Pentagon has dropped plans to conduct high-level talks with China in the twilight of the Bush administration, according to Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Eric Edelman.

Read more at Inside defense (paid subscription required)

China-Russia Relations and the Implications for the US

September 12, 2008
Aviation Calendar 2009

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In some cases, China and Russia share overlapping interests, while in others they compete for power and wealth.  Dr. Richard Weitz of the US Army Strategic Studies Institute analyzes this relationship and finds that many factors, both domestic and foreign, will affect Sino-Russian ties. He suggests some proposals for U.S. policymakers to prepare to respond effectively should China-Russia relations evolve in ways that threaten core U.S. values and interests.

Click below to go to the e-book.

China-Russia Security Relations: Strategic Parallelism without Partnership or Passion

Is the U.S. Army ready for conventional war?

September 3, 2008
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AH-64 Apache

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Focusing only on counterinsurgency and nation-building is unwise, writes Gian Geltile in the Christian Science Monitor. It must prepare to fight other armies.

“Images of Georgian infantry moving under fire and Russian tanks on the attack show that the days of like armies fighting one another on battlefields are far from over.,” writes Gian Gentile.

“What does this mean for the US Army? As it considers its role after Iraq, should it be restructured for war and conflict along the lines of counterinsurgency and nation-building, or toward conventional fighting as represented by the Georgian war?

“Armies trained to fight conventional warfare can quickly and effectively shift to counterinsurgency and nation-building. Contrary to popular belief, the US Army proved this in Iraq.

“Its lightning advance up to Baghdad in the spring of 2003 happened because it was a conventionally minded army, trained for fighting large battles.

“If the Army had focused the majority of its time and resources prior to the Iraq war on counterinsurgency and nation-building, the march to Baghdad would have been much more costly in American lives and treasure.

“Critics argue that because the Army did not prepare for counterinsurgency prior to the Iraq war, it fumbled for the first four years of the war until rescued by the surge in February 2007.

“Not true, according to “On Point II,” a Army history of the Iraq war by Donald Wright and Timothy Reece. In fact, according to this book, the US Army very quickly transitioned from the conventional fighting mode. By the end of 2003, the Army – which spent much of the 1980s and 1990s training to fight large battles – moved into the successful conduct of “full-spectrum” counterinsurgency and nation-building operations.

Read the entire article at the CSM

Chinese Government Sentences Grandmothers to Labor Camp

August 21, 2008

Chinese officials have condemned two elderly women — Wu Dianyuan (age 79) and Wang Xiuying (age 77) to one year of “re-education” in a forced labor camp. Their crime: applying for a permit to protest the demolition of their homes.

According to the New York Times, several other Chinese citizens have simply disappeared after applying for permits to protest in one of the three designated  “protest zones” PRC officials agreed to set up in Beijing  for the duration of the Olympic games.

Evidently the PRC officials couldn’t even wait for the last foreign athlete to leave the country before rounding up such “dangerous subversives” as Wu Dianyuan and Wang Xiuying.

And how will the West react? By rewarding Beijing with even more outsourced jobs, more orders for consumer goods, and more sales of US government bonds to China.

Cyber Attacks From China Show Computers Insecure, Pentagon Says

August 9, 2008

Cyber attacks originating within China have exposed vulnerabilities in U.S. military computer systems that “increase the urgency” for improvements, according to a top Pentagon official.

Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon England, in a 70-page request sent to Congress July 11, asked to shift $1.8 billion in approved spending to other programs, including computer security, reports Tony Capaccio at

“Recent attacks from China on Department of Defense networks and systems increase the urgency to construct cyber systems” that can’t be penetrated, England said.

England said the Pentagon must develop its own technology. Building effective, secure systems for military command-and- control and sharing sensitive information between the military services and allies are requirements that “cannot be met with current commercial products,” he said.

Analysts said England’s statement is the Pentagon’s clearest public admission that its computers have been penetrated by China.

Read the entire article at

Gates, Active Duty Officers Square Off Over “Next-War-Itis”

July 22, 2008
A month after the firing of Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne and USA Chief of Staff General Mike Moseley, more active duty officers are coming forward criticizing Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ pooh-poohing military preparedness for major wars against peer adversaries, reports the LA Times.

Air Force Maj. Gen. Charles J. Dunlap and others are pushing back. They believe that the Iraq war is beginning to wind down and that the United States, chastened by its experience there, is unlikely to ever again become embroiled in a long-term ground conflict where adversaries rely on irregular, “asymmetric” fighting methods.

“We need the bulk of the Army prepared to go toe-to-toe with the heaviest combat formations our adversaries can field,” Dunlap said. “For what it is worth, I predict the next big war will be conventional, or I should say symmetrical. In my judgment, we are not going to get into the business of occupying a hostile country of millions of people.”

He is not alone. In military journals, midlevel officers’ conferences and gatherings around the Pentagon, a growing number have expressed concern that the Defense Department’s planning and resources are being trained disproportionately on small guerrilla wars.

At the same time, they fear that important military skills — storming beaches, fighting tank battles, using air and land power in unison to attack enemy lines — are beginning to atrophy. Read the full article

Thompson Warns Of Declining US Airpower

July 18, 2008

The Lexington Institute’s Loren Thompson has written another pointed warning that US air superiority may soon be history of Washington does not procure more 5th generation combat aircraft to match new Chinese and Russian models. Essential reading.