Chinese Ability to Enter the Pacific

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PhillyGuy

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Unread post12 Oct 2016, 07:55

i've noticed several articles now about chinese aircraft and ships practicing large formation and mix force deployments past the first island chain and into the western pacific. the chinese themselves seem to be very high on this ability and hold it as a major accomplishment of military power. with the emphasis being on power projection and operation in defense of the homeland far from the chinese coastline.

i just think it is a meaningless gesture as it is very unrealistic for china to ever have assured access out of the first island chain containment structure. because of hugely unfavorable geographical realities for china, in order to enter the western pacific it has to funnel its forces, both air and naval but particularly naval, through physical and natural choke-points controlled by US allies and defended by their respective forces.

from the yellow sea in korea and through the east sea around okinawa and taiwan, the chinese are screwed. past taiwan are the philippines and malaysia, indonesia, singapore, thailand and vietnam. even if the chinese attempt to launch a surprise strike with SSMs, A2G munitions and sea launched missiles they would have to hit all of these major countries and their forces simultaneously, ESPECIALLY the territories where US forces are present, or else the gig is up and everyone puckers up, disperses and assumes and offensive posture.

obviously the follow up would be to then launch mass air and naval fleets to further strike targets and in the confused and degraded state of the enemy sneak through into the western pacific. i am not sure china even has enough missiles and or targeting/command ability to conduct such a massive and coordinated assault. and even if they could, there is no guarantee that missile salvos alone will be effective enough to reduce allied capability to such an extent that they could not still respond and block china's access to the pacific.

it is crucial for china to be able to have a presence in the western pacific and assured access to conduct operations past the first island chain because they would otherwise be bottled up and destroyed within the confines of their shorelines and enclosed seas. without access to the pacific or indian ocean china cannot stop a blockage of its resources, interdict reinforcements from arriving via the indian ocean and western pacific, attack the enemy from multiple fronts, deny freedom of navigation/operation, and attack rear allied bases such as guam, hawaii and various other outposts.

they would also have no idea what is happening past japan, past taiwan, past the philippines and the south china sea. their forces would have to run the gamut of anti ship missiles, sams, mines, surface and air forces and submarines to get through these choke points and i am not sure they can. even if they somehow could, where is their escorting ISR and tanker support going to come from? their forces would be out in this vast territory with limited eyes and ears and isolated far way from the chinese mainland. very very vulnerable to being picked off and destroyed by a force that is already there and can monitor/control the area.

yes i have considered china sending amphibious forces and airborne troops to eliminate some of these allied forces on these territories guarding the pacific but that is very very difficult given the distances, number of troops required and the high profile and vulnerable nature of their transports when you consider the level of capability of the US/ROK/JSDM, taiwan, singapore etc... forgmen would not be sufficient to cause any widespread offensive, maybe a few successful isolated cases. but this option, however limited, remains their most hard to stop means in my opinion.

yes their fast jets and bombers could try to sneak and overfly allied territory by approaching low to the surface and or at high speed but again this is just not very practical considering flying over open water/defended allied land and the level of sophistication of the alliance military forces. i doubt the russians would join the fight or allow china to overfly their territory in the northeast. they could try to overfly north korea but we would still know and how the north koreans react is anyone's guess. they could try the back door approach and attempt to overfly without permission south east asian countries like burma and or central asian ones but again fraught with difficulties every which way you look at it.

in short they are fucked. i don't even know if their future carrier groups will last should they be pre positioned in the pacific and indian oceans prior to the start of hostilities. they would be highly isolated and visible targets away from mainland support and in no mans land dominated by the US and its allies. china has no vast global network of bases and forces like the US does for surveillance, supply, repair, stationing and dispersing.

i am not even sure that their ballistic missile submarines will be able to go on patrol in the western pacific/indian ocean unnoticed given that they would HAVE to pas through known choke points to get there. even if a few of their attack subs slip through, the large majority of them are not nuclear so limited endurance, munitions and speed to be of much use for any length of time or pose a serious threat.

i just don't see how the chinese can really wage a war in the pacific without being bottled in and systematically destroyed with no safe haven other than very far inshore in the mainland. the realities of geography and alliances in the region are not really going to change no matter how much the chinese military grows or advances. this is the number one limitation to china projecting power and being a global force and able to effectively defend the homeland.

it is why they want taiwan so bad, it is like a stone there blocking the path to the pacific, and why they are trying to claim and occupy or create any and all islands and land features that they can from the east sea to the south china sea.

what are your thoughts? i really think short of nuclear the US has little to fear from china.

i admit this is a highly unrealistic scenario for initial hostilities. that i believe to be miscalculation, ie. ship collision/damage from reckless behavior or careless employment of mines/missiles/main guns etc... coastal/island artillery/missile batteries, air patrol crash or shoot down/dogfight, highly provocative armed/hostile acts such as sneaking troops onto ally islands or territories/features or installations like oil rigs and gas terminals, or an intentional/calculated platform to platform clash between either china and one of our treaty allies or the US directly, over a number of reasons. disputed territory claims, overflights and freedom of navigation, and economic activity such as fishing or energy exploration are just a few.

any of this may ultimately drag the US in. and then the danger is because it is a limited/chance/spot engagement that the chinese being closer to home base and also more numerous and probably decisive, ruthless and determined, will overwhelm our ally and US forces present for that engagement before any help can arrive. and if china can build a state of circumstance where it has such pervasive and constant overmatch capability within the first island chain in any engagement scenario short of full war, they might be tempted to engage, thinking they can score a quick and isolated initial victory, destroy those allied or US forces and cause such political, emotional and military shock/loss of life/assets that we would essentially recoil, call time out, and be afraid to escalate into something larger. so we would let china get away with it and ask to negotiate, where they can now dictate the terms as the aggressor/victorious/hostile party.

this is a real danger because it is possible and the chinese would have every incentive to make it quick, decisive and hugely costly/deadly/destructive so that is does not escalate into a full war as described above which they know they will not be able to win.
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Unread post12 Oct 2016, 09:25

You hit the nail on the head. As China is one geographically boxed in and two still suffers both qualitatively and quantitatively behind the US and her Allies in Military Might! (and will for the foreseeable future)

Also, some seems to forget the Chinese Economy would come to a stand still without a steady stream of both imports and exports. Which, is the case of China mostly come via the Sea....These Sea Lanes could easily be cut off by the US and her Allies with even a limited amount of resources.


In short any conflict between China and the US would be short lived for the former. :shock:
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sferrin

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Unread post12 Oct 2016, 16:51

The US is crumbling from within. China only has to wait then it can fill the power vacuum.
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Unread post12 Oct 2016, 21:59

PhillyGuy wrote:i just think it is a meaningless gesture as it is very unrealistic for china


It's all for internal political consumption. Don't take much of what you see from China seriously.

sferrin wrote:The US is crumbling from within.


And then there's this guy. :roll:
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sferrin

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Unread post12 Oct 2016, 23:00

arian wrote:
PhillyGuy wrote:i just think it is a meaningless gesture as it is very unrealistic for china


It's all for internal political consumption. Don't take much of what you see from China seriously.

sferrin wrote:The US is crumbling from within.


And then there's this guy. :roll:


Do actually contribute anything? Anywhere?
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PhillyGuy

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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 13:53

sferrin wrote:The US is crumbling from within. China only has to wait then it can fill the power vacuum.


i think this "US crumbling from within" development of yours is going to take longer to come about if at all than china's 'growth from within'. let's face it, despite the economic success, failure in every other aspect of chinese life means the CCP and government/social structure of china is doomed/fucked. it is only a matter of time before a prosperous, informed and restless newer and newer generation of chinese demand more and more rights and reforms. no communist, dictatorship or oppressive government is immune from this inevitability, especially large ones with vast and dynamic populations and huge exposure to the global-world of politics, economics and culture and yet limited rights at home.

the track record in asia is particularly striking. japan, south korea and taiwan, which are the best examples, all went from authoritarianism/closed culturally to republics with democracy and social freedoms etc... and the transition and tipping point is always prosperity, ie. economic development and opportunity. this leads to more access to education and means of travel or receiving information for the population. which then begins the process of forming a sentiment in younger and younger generations of wanting more freedoms and say in their government to reflect their new found economic wealth and more informed/knowledgeable view of the world and their own country/government.

once china changes, and it will change, it's only a matter of when and how long it takes and how it happens (since i think even though the CCP is going extinct and it knows it, it will cling and fight death at every step) they will cease to be a military threat in the sense that they are now. so the best approach for the US is still to wait china out and contain them militarily, but passively, since any conflict with china only strengthens the narrative and position of the CCP and sours public sentiment towards the west/US. as once china transforms into a republic, it's over, they'll cease to be a real threat, because when the people of china have a say in their military use, they will never want or approve a war with the US.

i am reminded of a documentary in which an old japanese man many decades after WWII, recounted his memory of first hearing of japan's attack on pearl harbor and deceleration of war against he United States. he said he was in tokyo on the streets, and people were abuzz with frenzy clutching at the newspapers which proclaimed the news, and as he saw the headlines and pictures, he was in shock, all the japanese citizens were. they could not believe it, japan at WAR with the mighty United States of America, unbelievable! and he said he could not shake off the immediate feeling of doom and apprehension at what his country had done and the state it was now in. as history shows, his sentiment was spot on, but because japan at the time had no democracy, the people had no say over such developments and could not prevent them.

same goes with china now, but give it time, it too will change, and while it will still be a great power. it will be one that is less dangerous and more predictable and based around economic and political influence. the government/social body will by virtue of design and function be more involved with internal issues, than foreign conquests and military ambitions.
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 15:46

PhillyGuy wrote:and the transition and tipping point is always prosperity, ie. economic development and opportunity. this leads to more access to education and means of travel or receiving information for the population. which then begins the process of forming a sentiment in younger and younger generations of wanting more freedoms and say in their government to reflect their new found economic wealth and more informed/knowledgeable view of the world and their own country/government.


Bingo. The people in China who are benefiting most from the economic revolution there love America. They come here to do business constantly. I live in Los Angeles and I'm meeting filmmakers and business people from China on a regular basis. They come here to make money or, in the case of someone I met a couple of weeks ago, they come here so their kids can have a better education. My alma mater (USC) has made a concerted effort to enroll more and more Chinese students each year. The current generation of leadership may be the CCP, but the future leadership is going to be these economic elites. They want to be like America. The anti-America jingoism is just a weak attempt by the current leadership to keep the rural masses in thrall to the party. They're only staving off the inevitable transition to a market driven economy with some kind of representative government.

China has been a great power before. Centuries ago, when China was unified under a single emperor, they sent out merchant ships to seek fortune around the globe (little known fact, China helped start the coffee industry, if you travel to parts of the Middle East, you'll find that they observe a coffee ceremony that is remarkably similar to the tea ceremony that the Chinese originated. Why? They learned it from Chinese merchants.). Then they were all recalled and China focused on internal matters. They aren't an outwardly focused world power.

Great countries have personalities. The American personality owes a lot to the national character of England. England was a relatively poor island nation that gained economic power by sending out military forces around the world and settling colonies. America inherited something of that mindset, but it's a flaw in our thinking to believe that all other nations feel the same way.

China has always been a relatively wealthy nation (it's a problem of distribution and corruption that has held them back). They weren't like England, in that they needed to range afar in order to build up their economy. China has a lot of land mass and can provide for itself. Going forward, especially with their strong position in commodities such as rare earth metals, the Chinese don't need to seek outside sources for economic growth the way England had to back in the day. They have plenty of growth for real estate (which is remarkable considering the size of their largest cities). China isn't a natural enemy of the United States. The only real tension is ginned up by the current rulers in order to push off the inevitable: China as a free market country with some form of representative government.
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 19:49

PhillyGuy wrote:
sferrin wrote:The US is crumbling from within. China only has to wait then it can fill the power vacuum.


i think this "US crumbling from within" development of yours is going to take longer to come about if at all


An interesting comparison here:



If you live in the US, and are of working age, what do you see? You have the super rich, you have the educated/valuable with decent jobs, and everybody else. And that "everybody else" group keeps getting bigger and the middle group getting smaller.
Last edited by sferrin on 15 Oct 2016, 22:41, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 22:13

sferrin wrote:Obviously you are either young or haven't been paying attention.


Or, more likely, you've been reading too much Breitbart for your own good.

mrigdon wrote:Bingo. The people in China who are benefiting most from the economic revolution there love America. They come here to do business constantly. I live in Los Angeles and I'm meeting filmmakers and business people from China on a regular basis. They come here to make money or, in the case of someone I met a couple of weeks ago, they come here so their kids can have a better education. My alma mater (USC) has made a concerted effort to enroll more and more Chinese students each year. The current generation of leadership may be the CCP, but the future leadership is going to be these economic elites. They want to be like America. The anti-America jingoism is just a weak attempt by the current leadership to keep the rural masses in thrall to the party. They're only staving off the inevitable transition to a market driven economy with some kind of representative government.


Exactly. Not only that but all the kids of the CCP or any Chinese elites are in the US.

As I keep saying, people shouldn't pay attention to Chinese propaganda since it's not aimed at them. It's aimed at the lowest common denominator in China. Unfortunately, we have our own lowest common denominators too.
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 22:28

arian wrote:
sferrin wrote:Obviously you are either young or haven't been paying attention.


Or, more likely, you've been reading too much Breitbart for your own good.


Don't even read Breitbart. They your boogie man or something? Never mind, I don't care.

arian wrote:Unfortunately, we have our own lowest common denominators too.


And unfortunately they let you post. Again, do you actually post anything here other than your ideological BS? Do you contribute anything here?
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 23:33

arian wrote:
sferrin wrote:Obviously you are either young or haven't been paying attention.


Or, more likely, you've been reading too much Breitbart for your own good.



Of course the left argues the same thing. In fact even more. Sferrin is mentioning the hurt on the middle class, both sides agree on that, the argument is how to solve that but both are saying there are problems.
We have a huge national debt, and a large population that is set to get old and sickly all at the same time, hot on the heels of a failed medical reform law. We have a whole new generation that has accumulated massive amounts of debt for educations that can't get them work to the point where people are talking about the government taking the burden. For all the problems this country has that do require actual attention, we have 3 non problems that are being explored instead like who should use what bathroom.

The Navy has released their transgender standards, and what they expect it all to cost annually (it's in the millions) to satisfy sailors in aspects that have nothing to do with their ability to fight and win wars. We are already seeing the "identity politics" leaking into our armed forces and if you think that doesn't have effects I have bad news for you. The gender integration is an continuing "experiment" and most would consider it a failure that we are now doubling down on.

Simply put all this is made possible by gobs of money, money everyone agrees is going to be on the decline its just a matter of when it goes away, without drastic change, that neither side is going to attempt and the belt is about to get tighter. Again a lot of this stuff is something both sides agree on. The difference is one wants to fund the military and win wars without political tampering and defund social prograns, and the other side wants to tamper with the military and use the funds for social programs these are "open secrets"

Since we are talking about war, I thought money and the military might be topical. Trying to stay neutral. Im not going to let my kids join the militaRy because I'm watching what is happening first hand. I'm not the only prior service guy, 2nd or 3rd generation military that is saying it ends with them thanks to all the political interference. If enough people do that, it becomes a real problem.

So on a scale of 1-10 I would say we are at a 5. Security is not assumed or assured going into the future. Trends are slow. You won't notice year to year but decade by decade. 2026 is going to look different unless something is done. It's not like the US goes from 1st to worst, but going from 1st to second is plenty plausible and the fact that were doing it to ourselves is pretty noticable
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 23:39

sferrin wrote:If you live in the US, and are of working age, what do you see? You have the super rich, you have the educated/valuable with decent jobs, and everybody else. And that "everybody else" group keeps getting bigger and the middle group getting smaller.


So according to you, people getting richer is an indication of "imminent collapse"? :doh:

Here's what reality is:

Image

More people moving from low to middle to high income brackets. Which is what one calls getting better.
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Unread post15 Oct 2016, 23:54

XanderCrews wrote:
arian wrote:
sferrin wrote:Obviously you are either young or haven't been paying attention.


Or, more likely, you've been reading too much Breitbart for your own good.



Of course the left argues the same thing. In fact even more. Sferrin is mentioning the hurt on the middle class, both sides agree on that, the argument is how to solve that but both are saying there are problems.
We have a huge national debt, and a large population that is set to get old and sickly all at the same time, hot on the heels of a failed medical reform law. We have a whole new generation that has accumulated massive amounts of debt for educations that can't get them work to the point where people are talking about the government taking the burden. For all the problems this country has that do require actual attention, we have 3 non problems that are being explored instead like who should use what bathroom.

The Navy has released their transgender standards, and what they expect it all to cost annually (it's in the millions) to satisfy sailors in aspects that have nothing to do with their ability to fight and win wars. We are already seeing the "identity politics" leaking into our armed forces and if you think that doesn't have effects I have bad news for you. The gender integration is an continuing "experiment" and most would consider it a failure that we are now doubling down on.

Simply put all this is made possible by gobs of money, money everyone agrees is going to be on the decline its just a matter of when it goes away, without drastic change, that neither side is going to attempt and the belt is about to get tighter. Again a lot of this stuff is something both sides agree on. The difference is one wants to fund the military and win wars without political tampering and defund social prograns, and the other side wants to tamper with the military and use the funds for social programs these are "open secrets"

Since we are talking about war, I thought money and the military might be topical. Trying to stay neutral. Im not going to let my kids join the militaRy because I'm watching what is happening first hand. I'm not the only prior service guy, 2nd or 3rd generation military that is saying it ends with them thanks to all the political interference. If enough people do that, it becomes a real problem.

So on a scale of 1-10 I would say we are at a 5. Security is not assumed or assured going into the future. Trends are slow. You won't notice year to year but decade by decade. 2026 is going to look different unless something is done. It's not like the US goes from 1st to worst, but going from 1st to second is plenty plausible and the fact that were doing it to ourselves is pretty noticable


Of course, the Left is just as bad. No question about that. My point is that these are mostly non-issues.

They are political issues and become issues only as far as politicians need to create coalitions to win elections. So the Left and the Right pander to the same people by telling them that all their ills, real or imagined, can be fixed by said politicians.

If people REALLY think that the middle class is hurting, or the economy is doing badly, or whatever, I don't think they are being truthful with themselves. The middle class isn't hurting. Those stuck in the middle class may be "hurting" in relation to their expectations, and in relation to those who have moved up from the middle class (depends on how one wants to define the middle class. Is $100k household income middle class? In some parts of the country it is, in other parts $35k household income is middle class. The term is amorphous). It's mostly envy politics, both from the Left and the Right.

And it's all appearances. Someone in Kansas may not be experiencing economic growth over the last few decades as someone in Boston may have. That doesn't mean the guy in Kansas is "hurting". He's just where he would have been regardless if the guy in Boston got richer or not. And he's way better than he was in absolute terms than a few decades ago. He's only worst in relative terms. But that's what politicians exploit.

As for debt, I don't think that's much of an issue, or health care and certainly not educational debt. Average student loan debt in the US is around $30k, which is nothing considering the benefits to education in the job market. Again, in my view this is just politicians again trying to win votes by telling people they will pay for their college one way or another. All a non-problem in my view.

And all of these issues, whatever merit they may have, pale in comparison to issues every other country is having, or that we ourselves have had in the past.

If one thinks China is going to inherit the earth because some dumb young kids in the US picked the wrong college major, then one probably needs to see what problems China's young people have. Or if one thinks society is collapsing because some guy in Kansas can't afford to buy a newer model car this year, I'm sure most people even in the developed world would laugh at our problems.
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Unread post16 Oct 2016, 00:47

arian wrote:
sferrin wrote:If you live in the US, and are of working age, what do you see? You have the super rich, you have the educated/valuable with decent jobs, and everybody else. And that "everybody else" group keeps getting bigger and the middle group getting smaller.


So according to you, people getting richer is an indication of "imminent collapse"? :doh:

Here's what reality is:

Image

More people moving from low to middle to high income brackets. Which is what one calls getting better.


Wow. So all this, "whaaaa I don't have no money, can't find a job, and need everything free" the left continues to squeal about has no basis in reality then? And those charts, what dollars are they in? A dollar in 1967 was worth a hell of a lot more than one today. And while you're at it, maybe you could explain why it almost demands a working couple to "have it all" when back in the 50s - 80s it was totally doable on a single income. Maybe you could explain why there are fewer people working full time than there has been in decades. Maybe you can explain why there are more people on government assistance than ever before. I could go on but what would be the point? You've got your shot of Kool-Aid and that's all you need to know.
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Unread post16 Oct 2016, 00:55

There shouldn't ever be a right and left political competition in the same country. Their ideology is incompatible.
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