Chinese commission new class of warships
THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
SHANGHAI, China -- China's navy has commissioned the first in a new class of domestically designed and built warships, official media reported Tuesday.
The missile frigate Wenzhou, named after a port city in eastern China, entered service Monday at a ceremony attended by East China Fleet commander Zhao Guojun, according to a brief report on the official Wenzhou Newsnet.
The report gave no other details about the ship, but Western military experts have described it as the first in the 054 Ma'anshan class, representing China's most advanced missile frigates.
Along with superior electronics, anti-submarine capabilities and air defenses, the ships boast sloped, covered sides and a special exterior paint intended to make it more difficult to spot by radar, according to the reports.
The ships are designed to operate far out at sea, part of the People's Liberation Army's development of a "blue water" navy intended to assert Chinese claims to Taiwan and other territories and protect sea lanes transporting vital natural resources.
China Dispatches Warships to East China Sea
Voices Magazine Newswire
29 September 2005
| Voices Magazine | China has dispatched a flotilla of warships to a region in the East China Sea that is under dispute with Japan.
The deployment comes one day before Chinese and Japanese officials were set to meet to discuss competing claims in gas-rich waters.
"I can now confirm that in the East China Sea, a reserve vessel squadron has been established," foreign ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a regular briefing of reporters. "The establishment of this vessel squadron is aimed at handling emergency situations like rapid mobilization and assistance at sea during peacetime, while also raising the ability of the navy."
He gave no further details.
Despite the foreign ministry's statement, it wasn't clear if the deployment was aimed at Japan. Earlier this week the state-run Xinhua news agency said the flotilla would be ready for combat if needed.
That report said the fleet would be able "to handle emergencies during peacetime, and be able to fight during wars." It would also be equipped to "eliminate obstacles at sea," said the report.
Japan has said China began production from a potentially lucrative gas field in the East China Sea earlier this month.
Both sides are to hold consultations on disputed regions in Tokyo Friday.
Earlier this month, Japan spotted Chinese warships at the disputed fields, but Beijing dismissed that as a routine military exercise.
Japan has also discovered Chinese submarines in its territorial waters in recent months.
Japan-China gas talks begin in Tokyo
2005-10-01 / Reuters /
Japanese and Chinese officials began a two-day meeting in Tokyo yesterday on a dispute over gas exploration in the East China Sea that could further sour relations between the energy-hungry countries if left unresolved.
The row is one of several issues that have strained ties between the Asian neighbors. Tensions rose earlier this month after Japan said China had sent warships to the area and started producing oil or gas at one of the fields, near waters over which Japan claims rights.
China said on Thursday it had put a naval reserve fleet on duty off its east coast near the disputed area, but a Chinese spokesman did not say whether the move was connected to the gas talks.
Japanese officials said they hoped the talks, held after a four-month hiatus, would benefit both sides. China and Japan are the world's second- and third-largest oil consumers, respectively.
"While protecting our national interests, I hope that we can reach a resolution to this problem that would be a plus for both Japan and China as soon as possible," Japanese Trade Minister Shoichi Nakagawa told reporters.
Relations between the two sides have been worsened by Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi's annual visits to Tokyo's Yasukuni Shrine, which China sees as a symbol of Japan's past militarism.
Japanese officials said tensions could rise if the talks fail to make progress. In that case, China might go ahead with operations at other gas fields, and Japan could counter by conducting test drilling as it had been preparing to do.
Japanese officials will inform their Chinese counterparts about the "tense situation" within Japan, a senior Japanese foreign ministry official told reporters on Thursday, alluding to domestic calls to proceed with test-drilling.
Other officials have said Tokyo may need to provide escorts by the Coast Guard or its navy for the test-drilling operation given the presence of Chinese warships.
At the heart of the dispute is China's development of gas fields in the East China Sea near to what Japan claims is the median line that separates the two countries' exclusive economic zones (EEZ).
Japan says Beijing's development of the area could tap into resources lying beneath the waters Japan claims as its own.
China does not recognize the midway line and says its EEZ - which gives a country sole rights to resources such as mineral extraction from the seabed - includes areas on the east, or Japanese, side of it.
China has dismissed repeated Japanese calls to suspend the development, saying the work is taking place within its EEZ.
Some energy experts have questioned the value of the resources in the area, saying that natural gas reserves, estimated as high as 200 billion cubic meters, could be hard to extract and are located in a spot ill-suited for sale to the Japanese market.
But analysts have said Tokyo sees its sovereignty at stake. Japan, eager to stress its claims, has granted exploration firm Teikoku Oil Co. a license to conduct test-drilling in the disputed area.
The two countries have been discussing the possibility of joint development, but are at odds over how to proceed.
China turns to Russia for big-ticket military items
BY TIM JOHNSON
Knight Ridder Newspapers
BEIJING - (KRT) - Reaching into its deepening pockets, China has gone shopping for new weapons in Russia and, to a lesser extent, in Israel and Ukraine.
Russia has been delivering an average of $2 billion a year worth of equipment to China since 2000, handing over fighter jets, missile systems, submarines and destroyers.
China accounts for 30 percent to 50 percent of Russia's weapons exports, keeping its arms industry healthy, and it has attempted to leverage that clout to extract new military technologies from Moscow.
"The Russians held the line at the beginning. But as they get deeper in with the Chinese, they are finding the Chinese pressing for the good stuff," said James Mulvenon, a specialist on the Chinese military at the Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis, a Washington consultancy.
Two new Kilo-class fleet attack submarines are now piggy-backed on ships sailing from a St. Petersburg shipyard to China, joining four already delivered, Mulvenon said. The Kilo class is one of the most advanced and quietest diesel-battery submarines in the world, likely equipped with supersonic anti-ship missiles.
Like much of Russia's arms exports to China, "nothing is dumbed down," Mulvenon said.
Russian collaboration has allowed China to amass a fleet of fighter aircraft able to fly longer range in worse weather and carry more lethal weapons, totaling some 200 Russian Su-27 and Su-30 jet fighters and bombers. China is shopping now for Russian aerial refueling tankers and aircraft for surveillance and target detection, as well as strategic bombers.
Russia showed off the aircraft, as well as long-range TU-95MS and TU-23M3 bombers, during unprecedented joint Sino-Russian war games in late August near the Yellow Sea. Some 10,000 troops from both nations were deployed in the exercises.
"There is no better advertisement for our arms and military hardware than a real demonstration of their capabilities in the course of practical exercises," Russian Defense Minister Sergei Ivanov said as the exercises unfolded.
China's navy already is equipped with several Sovremenny-class guided missile destroyers, which Russian defense firms outfitted with sophisticated radar systems.
For its part, Ukraine has sold China gas turbine power plants used in destroyers and is in talks on offering heavy-transport aircraft and aerospace technology.
China's arms-buying relationship with Israel dates to the early 1980s. Israel began selling arms to Beijing in a bid to limit Chinese assistance to its foes in the Middle East.
"Israel does not sell any platforms, like aircraft or ships. It basically sells avionics, upgrading, (and) electronic surveillance," said P.R. Kumaraswamy, an expert on Israeli military industries at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi.
The relationship has proved thorny, straining Israel's relationship with Washington. U.S. officials first grew angry when Israel helped China develop its F-10 fighter jet, almost identical to the Israeli Lavi fighter, which was designed with more than $1 billion in U.S. aid.
In 2000, an angry White House thwarted Israel's plans to go through with a potential $1 billion deal to equip China with the Phalcon radar system.
A new crisis erupted this year in April. Washington grew angry that Israel appeared to be responding to a Chinese request to upgrade Israeli-made Harpy attack drones. The Harpy drones, first sold in 1997, can destroy enemy radar transmitters. The Pentagon subsequently announced restrictions on sharing information with Israel.
After months of wrangling, the Pentagon said Aug. 16 that Israel had pledged to consult more closely with Washington on military sales to China.
© 2005, Knight Ridder/Tribune Information Services.
China's military buildup shakes up East Asia
BY TIM JOHNSON
Knight Ridder Newspapers
DALIAN, China - (KRT) - If the U.S. Navy's Seventh Fleet one day sails to Taiwan's defense, China's large fleet of submarines could be lurking with a lethal surprise.
The submarines, waiting along Taiwan's Pacific coast, could fire a barrage of "Sizzlers," devastating anti-ship weapons that pop out of the water, spot aircraft carriers or escort ships, then drop near the water's surface, accelerating to supersonic speeds for the kill. Little can be done to defend against a "Sizzler" attack.
"You're pretty much a sitting duck," said Larry M. Wortzel, a former U.S. military attache in Beijing who's now an analyst at the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank in Washington.
The course of the 21st century will be determined in part by the relationship between China and the United States. In many ways, relations are healthier than ever. But the two nations remain potential adversaries, plotting in war games how to thwart each other. While always cautious of nuclear-armed China, the United States has become even more watchful.
U.S. strategists say the People's Liberation Army has made huge strides in modernization. China now has a submarine fleet that rivals the Pentagon's in numbers, if not in weaponry. Air bases bristle with new Russian-built fighter jets. At testing sites, military engineers toil over anti-satellite lasers and "bolt-out-of-the-blue" weapons systems.
And the buildup is far from over. Shipyards churn out frigates and new vessels by the month, and China fine-tunes a sea-based nuclear missile delivery system designed to keep the White House wary of tangling with a rising dragon in the East.
"It's a military that isn't looking for a fight but wants to have sharper teeth," said James Mulvenon, a China military expert at the Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis in Washington.
China enjoys nowhere near the overall strength of U.S. forces, now tested by wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. But its analysts are scrutinizing U.S. deployments in Iraq, Afghanistan and on the high seas for signs of weakness and are seeking to exploit them in any clash over Taiwan or elsewhere. Moreover, as China modernizes its military forces, it's reshaping military balances in the region.
Washington and regional capitals, particularly Tokyo, view the cumulative effect of China's military buildup with concern, even alarm. In pointed remarks on June 4 in Singapore, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld asked: "Since no nation threatens China, one must wonder: Why this growing investment? Why these continuing large and expanding arms purchases? Why these continuing robust deployments?"
Defense analysts say the answer is evident: China wants its armed forces to be able to thwart the U.S. Pacific Command from intervening if Beijing orders an invasion of Taiwan, a self-governing democratic island that China claims as its own.
"It's clear that the systems they've acquired and the systems they are developing are designed to ... deny the U.S. the abilities to move in the Western Pacific," Wortzel said.
Those paid to observe the world's largest army, with 2.3 million soldiers, report across-the-board improvements. The PLA has toughened training and now conducts exercises in more realistic fighting conditions. The military also has steadily purchased modern weapons systems from cash-strapped Russian defense industries.
"In every area of capability, the Chinese are modernizing like there's no tomorrow," said Richard D. Fisher, a specialist on China's military at the International Assessment and Strategy Center in Washington.
Average Chinese swell with pride at the buildup, viewing it as the entitlement of a once-poor country gaining global stature. They see no contradiction between building a brawny military and Beijing's claim that its "peaceful rise" threatens no one. History largely backs China's contention that it isn't an aggressor.
China's military improvements are hard to observe. A visitor who approached a public Navy Museum in nearby Lushun, the site of a base at the entrance to the Bohai Sea in northeast China, found himself detained, fined for "illegal tourism" and told that the area is off-limits to foreigners.
Yet it's here, anchored along China's 9,000-mile coastline, where the nation's military power is growing with the greatest vigor.
In mid-June, China offered an offshore exhibition of its military prowess in the silty Bohai Sea. A submarine fired one - and perhaps two - missiles that soared all the way to deserts in Central Asia. The test showed that China may soon be able to launch nuclear-tipped intercontinental ballistic missiles not just from landlocked silos but also from nuclear attack submarines anywhere in the Pacific Ocean.
"They are on the verge of acquiring a survivable nuclear deterrent," said Lin Chong-pin, a former deputy defense minister in Taiwan.
If a confrontation between Chinese and U.S. military forces were to erupt, Lin said China's ability to maintain an undersea nuclear missile platform would "throw a monkey wrench into the thinking at the White House." If the two nations exchanged nuclear strikes, China would retain the ability to launch a second strike.
Cooler heads in Beijing and Washington flinch at the prospect of any sort of military clash. The two nations have vast common economic interests, and relations remain constructive. While no military hotline exists between Beijing and Washington, Cabinet-level contacts occur nearly monthly.
For two decades, China's economy has grown at a torrid pace, and military spending has chalked up a double-digit increase for each of 17 straight years.
In an annual report on China's military released in mid-July, the Pentagon said that China's real defense spending may be "two to three times" the $30 billion budget stated by Beijing - still less than a quarter of the $455 billion that Congress allots the Pentagon.
The defense spending has brought a qualitative change to China's military:
_ China by late this year will have as many as 300 Russian-built SU-27 jetfighters and SU-30MKK fighter-bombers, and is acquiring aerial refueling aircraft from Russia. It also is converting older aircraft into unmanned aerial drones.
_ Space-based and over-the-horizon radar and weapons could enable China "to identify, target and track foreign military activities deep into the western Pacific ..." according to the Pentagon annual report. By 2010, China expects to have some 100 surveillance and communications satellites, and it's working on micro and nano-satellites.
_ China is reportedly probing the use of ballistic missiles against U.S. naval carrier groups - either by arming them with maneuverable warheads that can home in on ships or through electronic "pulse" weapons that explode in the air and knock out communications, rendering a carrier effectively inoperable.
_ Even as shipyards churn out new vessels, an increasing number of shipyards are building everything from diesel-electric submarines to frigates. The nation has built 10 destroyers in the past decade, gaining new ability to project naval power.
"They are doing something like 37 vessels in 25 yards at once," said a U.S. official with access to intelligence reports who spoke on condition of anonymity. "It suggests that it is urgent."
At first blush, it would seem that China's lack of an aircraft carrier is a major weakness. Yet analysts say its submarine fleet of 50 to 60 vessels constitutes a surprisingly formidable force, even if some aging diesel-electric submarines date back decades. The U.S. Navy has only large nuclear-powered submarines.
China's older submarines can turn off their noisy diesel engines and operate on battery fuel cell power, lurking quietly for days. Their home water - the Yellow, and East and South China seas - are turbid and shallow, with swiftly changing temperature and salinity levels that make sonar detection particularly challenging. Moreover, the seas above the submarines swarm with maritime traffic.
"They are outdated but very effective," said Andrew Yang, a military expert at the Chinese Council of Advanced Policy Studies, a think tank in Taiwan.
Any U.S. naval commander sailing toward Taiwan might grow wary that old People's Liberation Army submarines, moving on battery power, are poised to fire wake-homing torpedoes.
"The American fleet commander, depending on how quickly he needs to get in there, is going to want to locate those submarines," said Bernard D. Cole, a China naval expert at the National Defense University in Washington.
That's no easy task. Since the end of the Cold War, and the demise of the Soviet Union, U.S. spending on anti-submarine detection has fallen sharply. An incident last November underscored China's efforts to gain from that shortfall. A Chinese Han-class nuclear submarine left its port of Ningbo and sailed all the way to Guam, the site of major U.S. naval and air bases, and was returning home before Japan detected it in its territorial waters.
"If they can go to Guam and nobody knows, why can't they go to Pearl Harbor?" asked retired Adm. Nelson Ku, a former commander of Taiwan's small navy.
China has leveraged its arms-buying relationship with Russia into bigger and higher-end purchases, spending at least $3 billion a year. In addition to four guided missile destroyers, China is buying eight new Kilo-class diesel-electric submarines, all equipped with "Sizzler" SS-N-27 missiles, the anti-ship weapons that can fly at Mach 2.3 as they ram ships.
Some U.S. military analysts, though, are wary of overemphasizing China's military strength, saying the issue has become politicized. The U.S. Navy and Air Force are "looking for a traditional enemy" in the wake of the global war on terror, which has better suited the Marine Corps and Army, said Mulvenon, the Washington-based China analyst.
For their part, senior PLA officers rarely talk about China's strength, heeding Sun Tzu, the ancient general and author of "The Art of War," who advised: "Although you are capable, feign incapability."
Restraint may be advisable, given the lack of combat experience of PLA officers and rank-and-file alike since a short war with Vietnam in 1979. Moreover, training of conscripts and soldiers, while improving, still trails that of the U.S. military.
"Everybody who comes into the U.S. military knows how to drive a car. They can drive a Humvee away. But I don't think that's true for the PLA," said Dennis J. Blasko, a former military attache in Beijing who is an author on Chinese military matters.
Even so, some of China's top officers seem to be feeling emboldened.
In remarks that sent ripples across the Pacific, Maj. Gen. Zhu Chenghu told foreign journalists in Beijing in mid-July that China should be ready to attack the United States with nuclear weapons if U.S. forces intervene in a confrontation over Taiwan.
"We Chinese will prepare ourselves for the destruction of all of the cities east of Xian. Of course, the Americans will have to be prepared that hundreds ... of cities will be destroyed by the Chinese," said Zhu, a "hawk" who teaches at China's National Defense University.
China's Foreign Ministry later brushed aside his remarks as personal reflections.
China dismisses talk of military threat to Japan
BEIJING (Reuters) - China dismissed on Tuesday a Japanese newspaper report that Tokyo's military had drawn up a defence plan citing the slight possibility of a Chinese invasion, saying it posed no threat to its neighbour.
Any talk of a "China threat" was a product of "ulterior motives", Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang told a news conference, echoing Beijing's standard line that the country is committed to peaceful development.
The Asahi Shimbun reported on Monday that the Japanese defence plan, drawn up at a time of tense relations with Beijing, referred to a possible Chinese occupation of disputed islands known as the Senkakus in Japan and the Diaoyus in China and Taiwan.
"There is a dispute between China and Japan about the Diaoyus, but we hold negotiation is the appropriate way to resolve the problem," Qin said.
"Regarding the Diaoyu islands, China's stance is clear and consistent: the Diaoyus and nearby islands are part of China's territory," he added.
Last month, a separate Japanese government policy paper on defence referred to the need to monitor China's military modernisation. China called the document irresponsible and said it would breed suspicion and antagonism and would undermine bilateral ties.
China a 'central' spying threat
By Bill Gertz
The Washington Times
Published September 29, 2005
WASHINGTON -- China's intelligence services are mounting wide-ranging efforts to acquire U.S. technology and are among the most active of nearly 100 nations whose spying has undermined U.S. military advantages, according to a senior U.S. counterintelligence official.
China's "national-level intelligence services employ a full range of collection methodologies, from the targeting of well-placed foreign government officials, senior scientists and businessmen to the exploitation of academic activities, student populations and private businesses," Michelle Van Cleave, the national counterintelligence executive, said at a recent congressional hearing on foreign spying.
Miss Van Cleave said spies from nearly 100 nations are working to obtain sensitive U.S. technology, and "two countries that always rank near the top of the list are, of course, Russia and China."
Although private-sector spies are a problem, "state-directed espionage remains the central threat to our most sensitive national security technology secrets," she said.
Chinese intelligence agents are "very aggressive" in business and at obtaining information through elicitation. Additionally, "they're adept at exploiting front companies, [and] they also have very capable intelligence services that target U.S. national security secrets," she said.
Chinese intelligence efforts "take advantage of our open economic system to advance China's technical modernization, reduce the U.S. military advantage and undermine our economic competitiveness," Miss Van Cleave told the House Judiciary subcommittee on immigration, border security and claims.
Chinese and other state-run and private spies use a variety of simple methods to acquire U.S. technology, including e-mail, facsimile and telephone solicitation or in-person requests, she said. Other methods include visits by spies to U.S. businesses, military bases, national laboratories and private defense contractors.
The public identification of China and Russia as spying threats by a senior official is a departure from past policy, when the identities of foreign spies were kept secret to avoid upsetting diplomatic ties.
Miss Van Cleave declined to identify other nations involved in technology spying but said they include some of America's closest allies.
China's government also has obtained sensitive technology through the access that Chinese students, scientists and other specialists have in the United States, she said.
"Beijing has established a number of outreach organizations in China, and it maintains close relations with a number of U.S.-based advocacy groups that facilitate its interaction with experts here and probably aid in efforts to acquire U.S. technology," Miss Van Cleave said.
She said U.S. efforts to identify and stop the activities of foreign intelligence services have "to be more effective."
Larry Wortzel, a former defense intelligence official, told the subcommittee that China is methodical in its intelligence-gathering efforts in the United States.
"The U.S. faces an organized program out of China that is designed to gather high technology information of military use," Mr. Wortzel said.
from the horses mouth:english.people.com.cn/200509/27/eng20050927_211136.html
China launches "North Sword 2005" military exercise
China on Tuesday launched a military exercise code-named "North Sword 2005" in a training base in the northern Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.
A tank of the "blue army" maneuvers toward the battle field during the exercise code-named "North Sword 2005" at the Zhurihe training base, a tactical drill base in north China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region, Sept. 27, 2005.
Forty foreign military officers from 24 countries were invited to observe the exercise at the Zhurihe training base, a tactical drill base in Inner Mongolia.
The exercise was an important multilateral military exchange activity with the presence of the largest number of foreign observers since the founding of New China in 1949, said a Chinese defense official.
The exercise demonstrates the sincere wish of the Chinese army to develop friendly cooperation with foreign armies, said Jia Xiaoning, deputy director of the Chinese Defense Ministry's Foreign Affairs Office.
It will also help enhance mutual trust and understanding, deepen friendship and cooperation, and promote international and regional security cooperation, Jia said.
Jia said the exercise was aimed at fully displaying the new concept of security based on "mutual trust and benefit, equality and cooperation."
It is the fifth time for China to invite foreign observers to watch its military exercises since 2000. The North Sword 2005 drill, which involves about 16,000 soldiers, has invited the largest number of foreign observers.
"The Chinese army is becoming more open and transparent," said Peng Guangqian, a major general of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA).
"Such openness and transparency is a refution against the 'China threat' rhetoric," said Peng, who is also a research fellowwith the PLA's Military Academy of Sciences. "Facts have proved that China does not constitute any threat to any country, instead China is a major force in safeguarding world peace and stability."
After the war game, Chinese and foreign military officers will hold academic discussions at the drill base, according to defense sources.
PLA-related military exercises since 2000
The following are military exercises that the Chinese armed forces held with foreign armed forces or those that invited foreign military personnel to observe in recent years.
-- Nov. 2002, China
The PLA invited the US military personnel to view the attack and strike exercise by a motorized infantry brigade of Nanjing Military Command against defending enemies in the context of a simulated field positional warfare.
-- Oct. 10 to 11, 2002, China-Kyrgyzstan
The PLA and the armed forces of Kyrgyzstan held a joint anti-terror military exercise on the border of the two countries. It was the first time for China to hold a military maneuver with foreign military forces and also the first bilateral anti-terror exercise conducted by members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO).
-- Aug. 6 to 12, 2003, SCO member nations
Armed forces from five SCO member countries including China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia and Tajikistan took part in a joint anti-terror exercise named "Coalition 2003". It was the first exercise of its kind within the framework of the SCO and also the first time China participated in multilateral joint military maneuvers.
-- Aug. 25, 2003, China
China, for the first time, invited 27 foreign military observers from 15 countries to watch military maneuvers at its largest tactical drill base in Inner Mongolia, aiming to introduce Chinese armed forces to the world and strengthen cooperation with foreign armed forces.
-- Oct. 22, 2003, China-Pakistan
On Oct. 22, 2003, Chinese and Pakistani naval forces conducted a joint search and rescue exercise off the coast of Shanghai in the East China Sea. It was the first time Chinese naval forces held a joint exercise with a foreign counterpart since the founding of the People's Republic of China.
-- Nov. 14, 2003, China-India
Chinese and Indian naval forces conducted a joint search and rescue exercise off the coast of Shanghai in the East China Sea, the first between the two armed forces.
-- March 16, 2004, China-France
Chinese navy held its first-ever maritime drills with its French counterpart, off the coast of East China's Qingdao city.
-- June 20, 2004, China-Britain
Chinese and British navies held joint maritime exercise for the first time, off the coast of East China's Qingdao city.
-- Aug. 6, 2004, China-Pakistan
The PLA and the Armed Forces of Pakistan held an anti-terrorism exercise at Taxkorgan Tajik Autonomous County, northwest China's Uygur Autonomous Region, bordering Pakistan.
-- Aug. 28, 2004, China-India
Chinese and Indian frontier troops held a joint mountaineering training, the first of its kind between the two armed forces, in southwest China's Tibet Autonomous Region.
-- Sept. 2, 2004, China
Some 50 servicemen from China and abroad observed an amphibian landing exercise in Shanwei of south China's Guangdong Province. The group consisted of military observers from France, Germany, Britain and Mexico.
-- Sept. 25, 2004, China
About 60 foreign military officers from 16 countries observed a practice with live ammunition code-named "Iron Fist-2004" in the Queshan Training Base in central China's Henan Province.
-- Oct. 2004, China-Australia
Chinese and Australian navies held joint maritime exercise off the coast of East China's Yellow Sea.
-- Aug. 18-25, 2005, China-Russia
China and Russia held their first joint military exercises, code-named Peace Mission 2005. The one-week maneuvers, which involved 10,000 troops from the two countries, started in Vladivostok in Russia's Far East and later moved to east China's Shandong Peninsula.
Source: People's Daily/Xinhua
China Warns Against U.S.-Taiwan Arms Deal
Wed Sep 28,12:05 PM ET
BEIJING - A planned American weapons sale to Taiwan will damage relations between Washington and Beijing, a Chinese official said, ahead of next month's visit to China by U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said China could never accept the proposed $15.3 billion sale — involving eight diesel-powered submarines, 12 anti-submarine aircraft and six Patriot missile batteries — because it constituted interference in China's affairs.
Taiwan and China split amid civil war in 1949, and China has threatened the use of force against the self-governing island if it declares formal independence.
"(The weapons deal) would undermine national security and the unification of China and harm relations between the U.S. and China," Qin told reporters Tuesday. "We urge the U.S. to clearly recognize the serious harm the weapons package entails."
Qin's comments came several weeks ahead of a planned visit to the mainland by Rumsfeld, who has questioned the need for China's recent military buildup, saying in June that the country did not face sufficient threats to justify it.
The proposed weapons deal was first approved by the Bush administration in 2001 but has since been delayed by Taiwan's opposition Nationalist Party, which has a small legislative majority.
The Nationalists say the weapons purchase would throw Taiwan into an arms race with China that it could not afford, while President Chen Shui-bian's ruling Democratic Progressive Party believes that China's increased military spending leaves Taiwan no choice.
The Nationalists support eventual unification with mainland China, while the DPP seeks to strengthen Taiwan's status as a self-governing entity.
Fuck it, sell the Tiawanese as much military hardware as they can buy. Let's get Japan to start building their own nuclear arsenal too. These Chinese are a problem, and they have to be managed very closely. The better armed China's rivals are the less likely the Chinese will be to start something.
U.S. slapping more sanctions on Chinese defense companies
By Tim Johnson,
Knight Ridder Newspapers
Thu Sep 29, 4:21 PM ET
WASHINGTON - Until recently, U.S. consumers who wanted an el cheapo hunting rifle could've shopped at Wal-Mart or Kmart for a low-cost model made by North China Industries Corp.
But that company and other Chinese defense companies are in the penalty box with the Bush administration for selling weapons to nations that are considered rogue states.
Since it came to office, the Bush administration has slapped sanctions on Chinese companies or individuals 62 times for illegal arms proliferation. That follows a nearly three-year period in the Clinton administration in which not a single sanction was imposed.
The huge increase in sanctions raises questions: Do the sanctions push China toward better behavior? Are individual Chinese defense companies deterred? Why are some sanctions imposed on Chinese subsidiaries, letting parent companies off the hook?
China complains bitterly about the U.S. sanctions, asserting that it has new laws in place to curb arms sales and has reined in state-run companies that had been operating somewhat independently.
"Their response is generally to say, `It's outrageous! The sanctions are unfair. Show us proof,'" said Matthew Godsey, a research associate in Washington at the Wisconsin Project on Nuclear Arms Control, a disarmament advocacy group.
U.S. officials say the evidence comes from intelligence sources from various federal agencies that can't be divulged publicly.
Many of the sanctions have been imposed on just a few state-run Chinese companies. For example, North China Industries Corp., commonly known as Norinco, has received six sanctions since May 2003, all for missile-related exports to Iran. A state-run conglomerate based in Beijing, Norinco has won hundreds of millions of dollars in trade with Iran, including expanding a mass transit system in Tehran, and it considers Iran a major market. The company manufactures everything from ordnance and tanks to auto parts and rugs.
Officials from the company declined interview requests, instead sending an unsigned response to written questions.
"It is unreasonable and extremely wrong that the U.S. government has imposed many sanctions on our company in the name of nonproliferation," the statement said. "Norinco is a responsible company managed according to law."
Other U.S.-sanctioned companies in China include Precision Machinery Import/Export Corp., Wha Cheong Tai Company Ltd., Zibo Chemical Equipment Plant, and China Great Wall Industry Corp. The sanctions even reach down to individuals. One Chinese national, Q.C. Chen, an arms broker, has been sanctioned four times since 2002.
The U.S. sanctions vary in severity, ranging from a ban on soliciting U.S. government contracts to a wholesale prohibition of exporting goods to the United States.
Experts inside and outside the Bush administration assert that the sharp increase in sanctions has made Chinese defense companies cautious about wholesale proliferation but hasn't halted the flow of missile and chemical weapons technology abroad.
"They really don't transfer complete platforms anymore, complete missiles and things like that. They are into the murkier world of components," said James Mulvenon, a specialist on the Chinese defense industry at the Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis, a consultancy in Washington. "They've become a more sophisticated manipulator of the system. They are still engaged in bad behavior."
Much of the tougher stance toward Chinese defense companies came while John Bolton, a conservative whom President Bush recently installed as ambassador to the United Nations, served as the State Department's point man on arms control and nonproliferation, leading a team that pushed for sanctions.
"They've been taking a far less tolerant attitude toward the Chinese than in previous years," said Tai Ming Cheung, author of "China's Entrepreneurial Army," a book about the nation's military industries.
Much of what the Chinese defense firms sell abroad is permitted under Chinese law, but not American law, and the U.S. sanctions have barely slowed the companies down.
"If you look at their corporate performances, they continue to grow rather robustly. They've all been doing extremely well in the past few years," Tai said.
But U.S. officials say they can't seem to get China's attention on weapons proliferation matters unless they target a specific company, such as Zibo Chemical, which is accused of selling glass-lined chemical vessels to an Iranian company linked to chemical weapons production.
In many cases the sanctions have few teeth, targeted at subsidiaries of parent Chinese companies that have poor track records, but that may have ties to U.S. trade.
"We're so afraid, so concerned, that U.S. companies might lose business that the laws are almost impotent," said Godsey, the anti-proliferation advocate at the Wisconsin Project. "We don't see any indication that it (the sanctions) has changed behavior."
Godsey said a company like Norinco "has shrugged these off because it figures it can still make money" in Iran even if it loses up to $200 million in U.S. business.
A Norinco official, in the faxed response to Knight Ridder, said U.S. companies are hurt by the sanctions against the company.
"My company has conducted extensive business cooperation with American companies," the response said, adding: "We strongly demand that the U.S. government lift all the sanctions against us ... and let our business cooperation with U.S. companies recover and develop."
In some cases, Chinese companies have listed their firms on overseas stock exchanges in Hong Kong and elsewhere even as their subsidiaries stand accused by Washington of proliferating to nations such as Iran and Pakistan.
"Sanctions are often imposed on a subsidiary of a large Chinese enterprise, but there is no impact on the parent company, even if it is 100 percent owned," said Roger W. Robinson, vice chairman of the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission, a congressionally mandated body.
Robinson said he was particularly concerned about the case of Sinopec, a state-run oil company that began selling shares to foreign investors in 2000 even as two subsidiaries, Jiangsu Yongli Chemical Engineering and Nanjing Chemical Industries Group, were sanctioned for proliferation to Iran.
Robinson said he believes U.S. sanctions have brought "significant progress" with China but that the nation "remains part of the problem in proliferation worldwide."
The shit is gonna go down soon.
i really hate china
'THE PLA STRENGTHENS ITS AMPHIBIOUS CAPABILITY
By Yihong Chang
The Jamestown Foundation
La Nueva Cuba
September 11, 2005
It has been fashionable for many Western analysts to discount the People's Liberation Army's (PLA) ability to mount an amphibious invasion of Taiwan, calling it a potential "million-man swim." But in the face of such doubts, the PLA is modernizing and strengthening its amphibious units, and may be exploring unconventional means for transporting these forces with rapid speed.
For an all-out invasion of Taiwan, the PLA would have to mobilize possibly thousands of military and civilian ships under conditions of total air and naval superiority. For the medium term, this would be difficult to impossible. With its existing amphibious transports, the PLA could move only about one division of troops and equipment. But it may consider a "limited" invasion as victory--especially if victory is defined in diplomatic rather than military terms. There is ample evidence of possible PLA "coercive" strategies that would use finely tuned military power to force the government in Taipei into negotiations leading to a "reunification" dictated by Beijing. In this context, a "limited" or small-scale invasion coming on top of missile, air and Special Forces strikes could provide the necessary final push. It is thus important to monitor the PLA's growing amphibious capabilities.
The PLA has two types of amphibious units. First is a single Marine Brigade attached to PLA Navy's South Sea Fleet, which could assist in a Taiwan campaign. It is also designed, however, to undertake possible operations in the South China Sea. But, in contrast to most armed forces that maintain specialized marine forces separate from the army, the PLA also includes amphibious units in its main ground forces. These units are dedicated to a future Taiwan campaign. The most important army units in this regard are in the 1st Group Army (GA) in the Nanjing Military Region and in the 54th GA in the Jinan Military Region.
FIRST GROUP ARMY
Perhaps the most important capabability rests with the 1st GA of the Nanjing Military Region, which is opposite Taiwan. Its amphibious combat capability has been significantly upgraded. In 1998, its first division was reorganized from a mechanized division into an amphibious mechanized one. It is very likely that it will be the first PLA ground unit to launch an assault against the northern front of Taiwan.
To increase its capabilities, it is receiving new equipment. In particular, the new generation Type 63A amphibious tanks and Type 2000 (Kanwa name) amphibious armored personnel carrier (APC). The Type 63A is armed with 105mm gun and perhaps a day/night thermal sight system as well. As such, its firepower surpasses that of any other amphibious tank in the world, and matches that of Taiwan's current M-60 main battle tanks. Type 2000 APCs protective power, mobility and nighttime combat capability have been greatly improved over previous models. In addition, a digital commanding system for the armored force has also been set up for these forces. With these new amphibious APCs, a mechanized combat pattern similar to that of infantry and tanks is possible.
It is estimated that the second regiment of this first division, a force with a "glorious history in war time," will be given priority in the deployment of the above arms. (Last summer, the entire No. 1 division took part in the 5,000m fully armed swimming operation during the annual military exercise.)
54 GROUP ARMY
It is anticipated that in the future battle for Taiwan, the No. 54 Group Army will join the assault against Taiwan's cities and mountainous regions. Its No. 127 Division has been reorganized into a "light mechanized infantry division," and took part in the major military exercises in December 2000--a clear indication that new combat strength has been established in the force. To enhance its mobility, the No. 379 Regiment of the same division was armed with more Type-92 wheeled armored vehicles and Russian-built Mi-17 combat helicopters. The division's air-defense power has been reinforced with the new Type 95 gun/missile system on a tank chassis, first revealed in 1999. Although the No. 127 is a "light mechanized division," it is possible that it may either receive or cooperate with units with the new Type 88C main battle tanks, which carry a 125mm gun more powerful than that on Taiwan's M-60s. The PLA might have determined that the Type 88Cs are better suited to confront Taiwanese tanks and to attack cities. The division is therefore now trying to combine the firepower of the main battle tank with that of the rapid reaction infantry force. Will this become a trend in the Chinese rapid reaction forces? This also deserves close observation in the future.
For even a smaller assault force, the PLA will need ample naval transport. While it has not embarked on a major amphibious assault ship building program, it is improving types already in production. A source from China Shipbuilding Trade Corporation LTD (CSSC) indicated to Kanwa that they plan to install Type 76A 37mm twin anti-aircraft guns on the YUTING (Type 074) class and YUKAN (Type 072) amphibious troop and tank transport ships. This air defense system is capable of intercepting antiship cruise missile. In addition, these ships may receive a new twin 100mm gun system, with a range of 22km. The modification will enable transport ships to support landing operation with gunfire.
In addition to slower conventional transports, the PLA is also developing unconventional and far faster transport systems for its amphibious troops. One such system under development is the large Wing-In-Ground-Effect Landing Craft (WIGELC), which fly close to the sea but carry large loads and can land on a beach. Kanwa has also learned that the PLA is planning on at least two large type WIGELCs, a 400-ton craft and a 370-ton one. The latter is a passenger-cargo transport version with a loading capacity of two wheeled armored vehicles and 250 soldiers. With a fleet of such craft the PLA could launch surprise amphibious attacks against ports or other strategic areas where geography might block conventional assault ships.
Kanwa has also learned that Russia is currently helping China to establish a production line in Guangzhou be capable of producing large WIGELC for both civil and military use. It is not yet known which type of Russian WIGELC China will buy. One possibility is the ORLYONOK, which weighs 140 tons and can carry 20 tons at a speed of 375 knots. China has also expressed strong interest in Russia's Beriev Be-200 amphibious jet transport aircraft. Sales negotiations are underway. The Be-200 has a speed of 420 mph and a cargo capacity of 8 tons of goods or eighty soldiers.
These developments indicate that while the PLA may not be capable of a "Normandy" style invasion of Taiwan, it continues to envision some use for an amphibious assault capability during possible future operations against Taiwan. It is therefore not only important, but critical to monitor the PLA's continued modernization of its amphibious forces.
Yihong Chang is senior military analyst in Kanwa Information Center Canada and an Asia Pacific correspondent of Jane's Defence Weekly.
Tag for ANdy's reply.
an interesting blog
After Deng the Deluge
Summary: Kenneth Lieberthal's encyclopedic survey of the People's Republic bets the Communist Party can keep the lid on the country's political discontent, but a billion increasingly affluent Chinese may be getting other ideas.
Arthur Waldron teaches strategy at the Naval War College and East Asian studies at Brown University, and is an Associate of the Fairbank Center for East Asian Research, Harvard University. His most recent book is From War to Nationalism: China's Turning Point, 192 (Cambridge University Press, 1995).
The world is relearning a basic lesson about China: how it fits into international society depends on its internal politics. The ease of relations with China from 1976 to 1989 reflected the end of the Cultural Revolution and a great reduction in domestic repression; problems thereafter grew from the regime crisis following the Tiananmen massacre. As for the rise in tensions today, many of the factors prompting it--China's military modernization and expansion in the South China Sea, for example--clearly have something to do with looming political contention in Beijing after the death of paramount leader Deng Xiaoping.
What does the future hold? Kenneth Lieberthal ventures an answer toward the end of Governing China. The book is an encyclopedic survey of what political science has learned about the People's Republic of China--about the careers of its leaders, its structures of authority, its policy and power struggles--and in both its impressive scope and judicious flavor recalls How the Soviet Union Is Governed, Jerry F. Hough's revision of Merle Fainsod's classic, How Russia Is Ruled. So it is perhaps worth recalling Hough's prognosis for the U.S.S.R., eminently reasonable in 1979: "Any future evolution is highly likely to retain the framework of the present system in one sense or another."
Lieberthal, similarly, prophesies change for China, but most likely gradual change within existing structures. He expects the state to "employ a range of strategies to fend off challenges from a developing society" and use the security apparatus to crush any unrest. The Communist Party may abandon socialism for nationalism, but it will continue in its preeminent role. The many internal pressures--economic, demographic, and political--whose buildup Lieberthal chronicles will likely be accommodated as the system evolves in directions that can already be discerned. "While uncertainties abound," Lieberthal writes, "it appears that on balance China in the late 1990s will grow more open, decentralized, corrupt, regionally and socially diverse, militarily powerful, and socially tempestuous."
This prognosis may well be correct, and it is certainly favored by many in government and foreign policy circles. But at root it is a linear projection, and these have an intuitive psychological appeal independent of their cogency. It is difficult enough to predict rain when contemplating a clear sky, let alone imagine a day when the red flag will come down in the People's Republic. Yet the Soviet flag was lowered over the Kremlin for the last time on December 25, 1991. Precisely because such spectacular shifts have taken place in a dozen countries--and almost took place in China in 1989--it makes sense at least to consider another future for China, one involving change more radical, less orderly, and far more discontinuous than Lieberthal foresees.
This alternative assessment says, in effect, let us for once try to recognize the preconditions for major historical change when they arise, and understand that they have inescapable consequences. Evidence for this approach abounds in Governing China, chapter after chapter of which presents in statistical detail the dramatic economic and social changes Deng Xiaoping's reform policies have wrought. For 20 years China has been growing economically about as fast as any country ever has. Huge cities have sprouted where a decade ago were only rice paddies. Tens of millions of peasants have left the countryside and moved to cities in search of work. Millions more Chinese have acquired modern education and knowledge of the world, so that thought and culture are changing as well. Communism, the ideological cement of the People's Republic, has been discredited.
Two centuries ago analogous developments in Europe set in train a process of change, conflict, and political reconstruction whose repercussions the world still feels. The consequences of Europe's military, industrial, and demographic revolutions have been thoroughly documented. The rise of cities, the spread of literacy and new ideas, and the development of a bourgeoisie were all changes the old order proved incapable of accommodating. Europe's new economy and new society demanded new state structures--with constitutions, legal systems, and citizen participation--and Europe got them, but only at the cost of much turmoil.
This pattern has been repeated wherever and whenever the same fundamental forces have been unleashed. Is it likely that China will be the great historical exception--that in 20 years it will be a vibrant economic giant, full of educated, mobile, and increasingly affluent people who nevertheless tolerate rule by a self-perpetuating politburo and its co-opted friends in society?
If the answer is no, then instead of wondering about succession, as so many pundits do, one should acknowledge that China today faces something far more complex and significant: regime transition. As this is being written, an intense battle is under way in Beijing over which party leaders will seize Deng's mantle. It is a riveting spectacle, but this particular fight will not decide China's future. When the dust settles, the important question will not be who but what. What sort of regime is China heading toward? And what will the consequences be for the world?
SEVERAL ROADS DIVERGE
If this reasoning is correct, the assumptions about China that Lieberthal articulates and governments around the globe share are at best valid only for the short term and are likely to mislead if pushed further. China future will be very different from China past and even present, and particularly from the China whose workings are most familiar and which Lieberthal describes exhaustively: the People's Republic. Substantial--and not evolutionary or gradual--changes are not only possible but likely. These will influence China's relations with the rest of the world far more than any initiatives or agreements decided on today. The present is transitional, and the United States should start positioning itself now for change (and perhaps influencing it).
The twentieth century provides a sense of the wide range of alternatives. One set of possibilities for China may broadly be termed constitutional. In its last years the Qing Dynasty was becoming a constitutional monarchy with a parliament and cabinet. The Republic of China that followed was authoritarian but also saw a remarkable series of parliamentary and constitutional initiatives. Eleven constitutions or draft constitutions were proposed or adopted between 1911 and 1949. The current democratic government in Taiwan operates under the all Chinese constitution of 1946, with amendments. Difficult as it has been to implement, the idea of constitutionalism continues to have legitimacy in Chinese minds, so that even the People's Republic has felt the need for a basic document, successively adopting five constitutions, the most recent in 1982.
At present, of course, the constitution is a sham. A small group of powerful men, as Lieberthal explains in his illuminating chapters on "inside" and "outside" views of government, handles the real business of ruling China. But Zhou Enlai 20 years ago drew up plans for some reconstitutionalization of rule after Mao's long extralegal reign (though Zhou died before Mao, so they came to nothing). Similar calls come today from the National People's Congress, China's quasi parliament, as Deng's long and equally extralegal rule draws to a close. In fact, generational change may force the government to pay more attention to the rules it has set for itself. With the last of the Long March elders departing from the scene, the strongman solution becomes impractical because no one fully qualifies for the role.
This is not to say that no one will try to become strongman--which brings up a second set of possibilities for the decades ahead. Chinese history this century reveals a pattern of attempts to recentralize authority in the vast and diverse land. Such was the fundamental policy of Yuan Shikai, the first post dynastic military dictator, who seized power from parliament and ruled from 1912 to 1916, as well as of Chiang Kai-shek and the Kuomintang, or Chinese Nationalist Party. After 1949 the People's Republic could proudly claim to have achieved this goal. Until the late 1970s the center, or zhongyang, counted for nearly everything (though Lieberthal's discussion shows that the reverse is true almost everywhere in China now). Someone in the center in the years to come could decide that enough is enough, the fractious country must be pulled back together, by force if necessary.
But as Hu Shih, perhaps twentieth-century China's greatest scholar, argued in an important essay, it is precisely when such attempts are made that China's unity has been most imperiled. China is a great civilization, and the most enduring of human historical units. But its inherent unity depends on a good deal of flexibility and local autonomy; apply too much centralizing pressure and the strain will cause China to begin to split. Thus in the 1920s more than a decade of regionally based warlordism and warfare followed Yuan's centralized rule.
Lieberthal mentions the precedent but does not make clear the logic driving it: a once coherent ruling elite proves unable to reconstitute itself under a new leader after the strongman's death, and its members begin quarreling among themselves, first employing political and parliamentary maneuvers but then cautiously reaching for military means as a way to decision. Nor does he note that this is almost identical to the intraparty politics of the People's Republic as his book describes it--the same personal disagreements, the same attempts to resolve them through alliances and bureaucratic intrigue, and the ultimate appeal to force, most recently in the capital bodyguard division's extralegal ousting of Mao's widow and other followers in October 1976. The key difference is that in the People's Republic such intraparty disputes have never led to full blown civil conflict--though the Cultural Revolution came close, and 1976 could have been more violent had military dispositions been different.
KEEPING THE LID ON
Lieberthal has considerable confidence in the ruling elite's ability to prevent its bitter rivalries from escalating into countrywide conflict. But in the administration of China, disagreements are ubiquitous within the center, between the center and the increasingly wealthy regions, within regions and units, and between rulers and the ruled. Any of these could supply the spark. Suppose, a few years down the line, an increasingly assertive National People's Congress passes laws that conflict with regulations promulgated by the party administration, or the governor of a wealthy southern province refuses to leave his post when Beijing tells him to. Each side might use its connections in the security apparatus and the military and among the regional authorities to get its way. Resolution might come, but it might not. Unanticipated escalation could even lead to civil war.
No less a figure than Deng Xiaoping prophesied, when Mao asked him in 1973 about the future, that "warlords would emerge and the whole country would sink into chaos"--an answer Mao evidently considered realistic. Strong legitimate political institutions are the best bulwark against such chaos, but Deng when he became ruler did nothing to create such structures. Instead he seems to have believed, against all historical precedent, that economic development plus repression, as at Tiananmen, could work.
Mention of Tiananmen brings up another set of possibilities, involving mass discontent pitting society against regime, as opposed to discord among the elite. It is true that many in China believe, with some reason, that the young leaders and students in Tiananmen Square in 1989 misjudged their actions and helped bring about an unnecessary disaster. But that does not mean they endorse the government crackdown; feeling is on the side of liberalization. The memory of the nationwide democracy demonstrations is alive, and the grievances that prompted them are still raw. The gap between state and society has only widened since 1989. The people have grown wealthier, better informed, and more self?sufficient while the government has grown weaker and increasingly reactive.
China in the years ahead will almost certainly see major strikes or mass protests. Noting that the government has been steadily strengthening its internal security forces since 1989, Lieberthal believes any such protests will probably "quickly die down, quelled by the state's repressive regime." But this assumes that the military and the police remain loyal. In fact, the military was deeply divided by the Tiananmen massacre, and individual officers and men often feel as tied to society as to the state. Called on to save an unpopular government in another Tiananmen, the People's Liberation Army is likely to split, or to join the people in getting rid of the politicians who gave the order.[/b]
THE BITTER ROOT
Should any of these eventualities come to pass, the challenges to policy for the United States and other countries will be very different from those to which observers have become accustomed. Hitherto the question has been how to deal with a China that speaks more or less with one voice. The United States has not been asked to support one Chinese leader against another (although reluctance to commit to a transitional President Jiang Zemin is part of the reason he has not been invited to visit Washington). It has not had to take a position on China's political form (although American sympathies during the democracy movement were clear, and would appear again under similar circumstances). Nor has it had to deal with prolonged unrest or civil conflict in China.
The root problem in all these scenarios is the antidemocratic character of the Chinese government and its consequent inability to deal with rapid, large-scale change. This will not be solved by economic growth; in fact, growth will only exacerbate it. Nor can a self-perpetuating leadership, no matter how adept at managing its internal disagreements and co-opting emerging social forces, indefinitely postpone the reckoning the country faces.
Finally, the new stress on an assertive nationalism that Lieberthal correctly identifies in China today will not finesse the problem of how China is governed. The Communist Party increasingly presents itself not as it had from its founding--as an iconoclastic force at war with the past and promoting social revolution--but as the guardian of tradition and vanguard of Chinese national feeling. Lieberthal explains this remarkable shift as a response to economic development; since prosperity alone cannot guarantee stability, the country "will need something more as a cohesive force, and most likely China's leaders will turn to some form of nationalism to meet this need."[/b]
But the stress on nationalism is at least as much an attempt to head off demands for popular participation, and the government has intensified its efforts in this quarter since crushing the democracy movement in 1989. Today the initiative, formalized as the Campaign for Patriotic Education, cannot be missed. It gives people restoration of the Great Wall, rituals honoring Confucius, new patriotic schoolbooks, and renewed emphasis on the evils of imperialism, particularly in connection with the return of Hong Kong.
Though the Chinese undoubtedly love their country, this does not translate smoothly into love of government, as rulers this century have discovered. Passionate national feeling begets criticism as often as loyalty, and the current leadership summons up the spirits of nationalism at its own risk. And no amount of solemn flag-raising ceremonies and patriotic education in the schools can obscure the need for genuine institutional change.
If such change is resisted, the increasingly tense situation inside China will probably be reflected in more turbulent foreign relations, as indeed is already happening. Should autocracy entrench itself in China for another decade or two, neighboring states, many of which are democratic, will find that they have less in common with China. Investment flows will shift. Arms races will begin (in fact, some have already begun).
On the other hand, it is possible that China will experience liberalization and progress, however chaotic, toward constitutional rule and legality. Most of the potential foreign policy problems that have been mentioned here are connected with domestic repression: the hard line abroad corresponds to the hard line domestically. But a Chinese government that had been elected would know itself to be legitimate and likely possess the confidence and flexibility necessary to resolve such issues and others, even the Taiwan and Tibet questions.
Lieberthal's book does not claim to be a guide to the future; rather, it is a comprehensive synthesis of Western scholarship on the P.R.C. But as Lieberthal notes, China today is an amalgam of aspects of Chinese tradition, Stalinism, and the East Asian economic model as found in places like Taiwan and Singapore. This amalgam, created by revolution, is being tested by the forces unleashed by reform. The result is a China that resembles less and less the People's Republic that it has been since 1949.
China, after all, is not the regime created by Mao and partly dismantled by Deng. It is a civilization, even a world. Like certain other great civilizations--Italy, France, and Russia come to mind--it has had great difficulty finding its political form, and the matter is open even today. How China is governed is an important topic. Even more important, however, is how it will be governed, and to this the best answer is, probably very differently.
There are two types of vessels in the sea.
Subs and TARGETS!!
Continued growth with China requires harmony
BY TIM JOHNSON
WUHU, China - If the 20th was the American century, the 21st may belong to China.
Just five years into the century, China has become the world's third-largest trader, one of its fastest-growing economies, a rising military power in Northeast Asia and a global player extending its influence in Africa, the Middle East and Latin America.
Americans and people around the globe can feel the effects of China's voracious appetite for resources and the enormous output of its factories, staffed by an endless stream of migrants who toil for $2 a day churning out low-cost goods, undercutting foreign competitors and upending the low-end global work force.
The world has never seen a nation as big as China rise as far and as fast as China has in the last 20 years. Its ascent, like those of the United States, Germany and Japan before it, is challenging more established powers. Its continued progress depends on harmony with these and other nations.
Whether China's rise lifts all the world's boats or sinks some of them will depend, first, on whether its rapid economic development continues. There's no certainty. Most of the country is backward and poor. Small rural protests erupt with growing frequency, and leaders fear a spark that could set off wider turmoil. Corruption erodes the credibility of the country's communist rulers. Citizens have huge expectations about rising standards of living.
It would be unwise, however, to bet against China. With the exception of India, no other country has such enormous scale, including such a huge pool of highly educated people. And in an age of globalization, no country has been better able than China to swallow the innovations of others and leap ahead of them.
China's conglomerates are on the prowl. Following a path Japan once took, Chinese firms are scouring the globe. But instead of buying trophy buildings and movie studios, they've bought IBM's personal computer business, tried to buy Maytag and pursued the oil company Unocal before withdrawing in the face of U.S. objections.
Economist Nick Lardy, an expert on China, said its economy was likely to grow rapidly over the next five to 10 years because of its openness to foreign business, high savings rate and huge pool of underemployed rural workers who are eager to work in factories, even for low wages.
Although much of China's production is still low-tech, the government is pushing innovation and research into areas that have both civilian and military high-tech potential.
American analysts figure it will be years before China's military is on par with the U.S. armed forces. But it doesn't have to be an even match to pose a serious threat. China's submarines soon will acquire supersonic missiles that could slow or damage U.S. aircraft carriers if they moved to defend Taiwan.
In its quest, China has extended its influence to Africa, the Middle East and Latin America. Its ''see-no-evil'' foreign policy sometimes puts it at odds with the U.S. interest in promoting democracy, human rights and nuclear security. With investment and diplomatic support, for example, China bolsters oil-rich Iran and Sudan.
China's Communist Party -- authoritarian and pro-business -- has had a monopoly on power since it won a civil war in 1949. Opposition is banned. While communist ideology has faded, the party stakes its legitimacy instead on its ability to meet rising expectations with rapid economic development.
China's global ambitions -- and the hopes of many Chinese for a freer society -- rest on the prospect of sustained growth. In the long run, economic openness might lead to greater political freedom, as it has in Taiwan and South Korea. As people get richer, they tend to want to join groups of people with similar interests, they seek to protect their rights in court and, finally, they want a say in how they're governed.
But China's gap between rich and poor yawns ever wider, fueling frustration and resentment.
Other potential obstacles:
• China's banking and financial systems are in serious need of reform.
• Years of rapid growth with little concern for the environment have taken a heavy toll on the land, the air and the health of many people.
• China needs far more energy than it can supply.
• A protectionist backlash could rise from the United States or other countries. Labor-intensive industries such as textiles have been pressing Washington for protectionist measures. The Commerce Department recently agreed to temporary quotas on some cotton clothing from China after global quotas expired in 2004. In addition, U.S. companies lose millions of dollars to Chinese theft of intellectual property, such as pirated movies and software. Still, many American companies want an expanded trade relationship.
China's very size -- 1.3 billion people -- makes questions about its future all the more important.
''China is the largest laboratory of social, economic and political change in modern history,'' said Zhang Weiwei, a Chinese political scientist who lives in France.
The ripple effects of such rapid, large-scale economic development are being felt in Asia and the rest of the world. China's growing tension with Japan, for example, occurs partly because of disputes over undersea oil deposits in the East China Sea.
But China's economic power isn't only a source of friction; it has also attracted admiration. Australians, who are doing a brisk business selling to China, now view China more positively than they do the United States, an opinion poll by the prestigious Lowy Institute, a research center in Sydney, found in February. Some 69 percent of Australians look positively on China, while only 58 percent do so on the United States, the poll found.
Eventually, the United States could find itself competing with China for dominance in Asia. It would be the first time the United States faced a challenger with so much economic power.
China's leaders have sought smooth relations with the United States while they focus on domestic problems. In the meantime, a growing China has started to help solve global problems, from support for the government of Afghanistan to the fight against AIDS.
''Our children and grandchildren are going to live in a world where China will be a very strong and powerful player on the world scene,'' veteran U.S. diplomat John Negroponte said during a confirmation hearing for his new job as national intelligence director.
Urban, middle-aged Chinese marvel at how much their country has changed since they were young.
For three decades after the 1949 revolution, the state assigned jobs and housing, restricted travel and offered a bare-bones welfare system. Simple belongings, such as wristwatches and bicycles, could take years to acquire.
''Twenty years ago, I dreamed of having a watch. My family was too poor to buy me a watch. So I drew one on my wrist with ink,'' said Li Tao, a research fellow in Beijing at Tsinghua University, one of China's premier institutions. ``Now I have a car.''
Rural unrest is a potential flash point in China, and the Communist Party keeps close political control.
Urban and rural dwellers alike are angry over land grabs by corrupt officials. Banking and stock-market scandals simmer. Underground religious sects appear to be expanding. Expectations of rising standards of living could endanger the party's legitimacy if unmet.
''Everything could fall apart. It's not that stable,'' said Wang Gungwu, the director of the East Asian Institute at the National University of Singapore. ``It's a single political party with no transparency [and] little accountability.''
China has Subs. Sunburn Missiles and Mines.
The US has neglected Mine Warfare and Mine Countermeasures as well as ASW.
The Chinese Military will focus on using Asymmetric Warfare (exploiting our weaknesses)
The waters in the Taiwan Straits are Littoral and noisy which make it very easy for Diesel Subs (some of them with AIP) to operate.
In order to achieve a Military Victory in Taiwan, China simply has to deny or rather delay sea access to the US Fleet, while they consolidate control over Taiwan.
The following is from Wikpedia en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Asymmetric_warfare
It is very educational, and it has a lot of links which I am not going to put in.
Asymmetric warfare is a military term describing warfare in which the two belligerents are mismatched in their military capabilities or their accustomed methods of engagement. In such a situation the militarily disadvantaged power must press its special advantages or effectively exploit its enemy's particular weaknesses if they are to have any hope of prevailing.
1.1 Strategic basis
1.2 Tactical basis
1.3 The use of terrain in asymmetric warfare
1.4 War by proxy
1.5 Asymmetric warfare and terrorism
1.6 A change in conventional warfare
1.7 Morality of Asymmetric Warfare
2 Examples of asymmetric warfare
2.1 Pre-20th century asymmetric warfare
2.2 20th century asymmetric warfare
2.2.1 Cold War
2.2.2 Cold War examples of proxy wars
2.2.3 Post Cold War
2.3 21st century
2.3.1 21st century military buildup
3 See also
Usually in warfare at the start of the conflict, the belligerents deploy forces of a similar type and the outcome of the war can be determined by the quality and quantity of the opposing forces. Unless one side calculates that the cost of war is offset by advantages to be gained, there is no point in going to war, otherwise one would assume that the potential belligerents will either be deterred from war or will agree to terms without resorting to warfare.
Often when the belligerents deploy forces of a similar type the outcome of a battle and a campaign can be determined by the side which has a slight numerical advantage or slightly better command and control of their forces. There are times where this is not true because the two belligerents have developed strategies which makes it impossible for them to bring forces to bear against the other. An example of this is the stand off between the continental land forces of French army and the maritime forces of the United Kingdom's Royal Navy during the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. In the words of Admiral Jervis during Campaigns of 1801, "I do not say, my Lords, that the French will not come. I say only they will not come by sea".
The tactical success of asymmetric warfare is dependent on at least some of the following assumptions:
One side can have a technological advantage which outweighs the numerical advantage of the enemy; the decisive English Longbow at the Battle of Agincourt is an example. The advantage may be the other way around, for example the attacks by overwhelming numbers of Chinese "volunteers" during their initial involvement in the Korean War overwhelmed the technological superiority of the United Nations forces.
My comments here: During the Korean War, US forces would use Landmines as one of the means of fortifying defensive positions. The Chinese would clear the Mine Fields by using Human Waves of soldiers. In China, Life is Cheap.
Training and tactics as well as technology can prove decisive and allow a smaller force to overcome forces much larger than they are. For example, for several centuries the Greek hoplites (heavy infantry) use of phalanx was far superior to that of any enemies they encountered. The Battle of Thermopylae, which also involved good use of terrain, is a well known example.
If the inferior power is in a position of self-defense; i.e., under attack or occupation, it may be possible to use unconventional tactics, such as hit-and-run and selective battles where the superior power is weaker, as an effective means of harassment without violating the Laws of war. Variations of this tactic succeeded for the North Vietnamese and its allied forces in the Vietnam war, in that the local forces did not win the war by a straightforward defeat of the US forces, but rather tired out the superior power. Similar tactics worked for the American colonists in the American revolutionary war and the Soviet partisans against German occupation on the Eastern Front during World War II. It should be noted, however, that in these cases, traditional battles were also fought in addition to guerilla tactics.
If the inferior power is in an aggressive position, however, and/or turns to tactics prohibited by the laws of war (jus in bello), its success depends on the superior power's refraining from like tactics. For example, the Law of land warfare prohibits the use of a flag of truce or clearly-marked medical vehicles as cover for an attack or ambush, but an asymmetric combatant using this prohibited tactic depends on the superior power's obedience to the corresponding law. Similarly, laws of warfare prohibit combatants from using civilian settlements, populations or facilities as military bases, but when an inferior power uses this tactic, it depends on the premise that the superior power will respect the law that they are violating, and will not attack that civilian target.
The use of terrain in asymmetric warfare
Terrain can be used as a force multiplier by the weaker force and as a force inhibitor against the stronger force.
Guerrilla warfare can be classified into two main categories: urban guerrilla warfare and rural guerrilla warfare. In both cases, guerrillas rely on a friendly population to provide supplies and intelligence.
"The guerrillas must move amongst the people as a fish swims in the sea."
- Mao Tse-Tung.
Rural guerrillas prefer to operate in regions providing plenty of cover and concealment, especially heavily forested and mountainous areas. Urban guerrillas, rather than melting into the mountains and jungles, blend into the population and are dependent on a support base among the people.
"The contour of the land is an aid to the army; sizing up opponents to determine victory, assessing dangers and distances... those who do battle without knowing these will lose."
-Sun Tzu, The Art of War
For a detailed description of the advantages for the weaker force in the use of built-up areas when engaging in asymmetric warfare, see the article on urban warfare.
War by proxy
Where asymmetric warfare is carried out (generally covertly) by allegedly non-governmental actors who are connected to or sympathetic to a particular nation's (the "state actor's") interest, it may be deemed war by proxy. This is typically done to give deniability to the state actor. The deniability can be important to keep the state actor from being tainted by the actions, to allow the state actor to negotiate in apparent good faith by claiming they are not responsible for the actions of parties who are merely sympathizers, or to avoid being accused of belligerent actions or war crimes.
Asymmetric warfare and terrorism
Asymmetric warfare is not synonymous with terrorism. Rather, terrorism is sometimes used as a tactic by the weaker side in an asymmetric conflict. Terrorism is sometimes called asymmetric warfare by advocates for partisans using terrorist methods to avoid the pejorative connotations of the word; likewise, occupying powers often label partisans "terrorists" as part of propaganda campaigns to maintain support in the occupying power's home country, and to win over the occupied people so as to cut off the partisans' principal support base. This is the root of the phrase "One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter."
A change in conventional warfare
Throughout the 20th century, for small scale conflicts, armies relied increasingly on tactics of the guerilla, spy, saboteur, provocateur, double agent, even terrorist and assassin. This underscored that the advantages of having no tactical unit organization were greater than the control such units provide.
Nonetheless, large scale conflicts remain the province of tightly organized armies, as evidenced most recently, in the 1991 Gulf War and the 2003 invasion of Iraq.
However, when Saddam Hussein's regime was removed from power in 2003, the Iraq campaign moved into an asymmetric warfare phase as US alliance and coalition forces met continued opposition from Iraqi and foreign insurgents. (See 2003 Occupation of Iraq.) This trend may indicate that even in wars involving conventional armies, surrender is no longer as attainable as it once was; defeating governments and the uniformed forces they enlist is insufficient. In many cases, the followers of an ideology do not hinge their will to fight on a single leader, which means that their surrender cannot be dictated or guaranteed by the defeated government powers. Modern conflicts, particularly those in developing or declining nations, tend to move quickly from conventional warfare to asymmetrical warfare, which often result in long UN peacekeeping missions (See list of countries where UN peacekeepers are currently deployed).
Morality of Asymmetric Warfare
In the classic rules of war, in particular in many of the Christian theological systems, asymmetric warfare is completely moral in and of itself, all other rules of war being obeyed. This entails:
Civilians cannot be attacked (thus terrorism is outlawed)
The war is a properly declared war, with an accountable authority on both sides who can also put an end to the war
Examples of asymmetric warfare
Pre-20th century asymmetric warfare
The biblical story of David and Goliath -- in which David slew Goliath with "five smooth stones" hurled from a sling -- is often cited as the inspiration for the triumph of the weak and the oppressed over the strong and the mighty. David's victory also symbolized the triumph of the new and advanced versus the old and outdated; his superior planning, skill, and knowledge defeated Goliath's dependence on overt force, intimidation, and heavy weapons.
Hannibal attacked Roman forces on the Italian peninsula with a small military force, bolstered by loose alliances. He successfully used raids and threats to survive a Roman force that at times consisted of as many as 23 Legions, with another 15 Legions and two Consuls retained in Italy to thwart Hannibal. This expensive response almost bankrupted the Roman Republic.
20th century asymmetric warfare
The end of World War II established the two most powerful victors, the United States of America and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (Soviet Union) as the two dominant world superpowers.
Cold War examples of proxy wars
An example of war by proxy was East Germany's covert support for the Red Army Faction (RAF) which was active from 1968 and carried out a succession of terrorist attacks in West Germany during the 1970s and to a lesser extent in the 1980s. After German reunification in 1990, it was discovered that the RAF had received financial and logistic support from the Stasi, the security and intelligence organization of East Germany. It had also given several RAF terrorists shelter and new identities. It had not been in the interests of either the RAF or the East Germans to be seen as co-operating. The apologists for the RAF argued that they were striving for a true socialist (communist) society not the sort that existed in Eastern Europe. The East German government were involved in Ostpolitik, and it was not in its interest to be caught overtly aiding a terrorist organisation operating in West Germany. For more details see the History of Germany since 1945.
The war between the mujahadeen and the Red Army during Soviet invasion of Afghanistan was a classic asymmetric war. The aid given by US to the mujahadeen during the war was only covert at the tactical level, the Reagan Administration was only too pleased to be able to tell the world that it was helping the freedom-loving people of Afghanistan. Of all the proxy wars fought by the USA against the USSR during the Cold War this was the most cost effective and politically successful, as it was the USSR's most humiliating military defeat, and that defeat was a contributing factor to the implosion of Soviet communism and some 1.5 million Afghan deaths.
Post Cold War
In the rivalry that arose during the Cold War, small powers, especially those described as composing the Third World were able to seek protection from one power or the other, or play the powers against each other, to try to achieve parochial goals.
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, powers that had been client states of the Soviet Union, states that were able to gain aid and support from the United States as "bulwarks" against Soviet power, and states that had successfully played the superpowers against each other found themselves with fewer options to defy US influence or extract material advantages from either of the former rivals.
Additionally, substantial powers that had been secondary to the two former superpowers, especially the nations of the European Union and the People's Republic of China have seen an opportunity to become the counterbalancing superpower to the United States.
These and other motivations have led to a great deal of interest in ways to oppose these superpowers, nearly always using alternative tactics from those to which these powers have become accustomed.
21st century military buildup
More information can be obtained at the above link
I wouldn't be to worried. Buying some ships doesn't give you a navy.