China thinks it can defeat America in battle: But it overlooks one decisive factor

 Sorry, China, but the U.S. still has the upper hand.

Sorry, China, but the U.S. still has the upper hand. (Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jared Hill/U.S. Navy via Getty Images)

The bad news first. The People's Republic of China now believes it can successfully prevent the United States from intervening in the event of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan or some other military assault by Beijing. Now the good news. China is wrong — and for one major reason. It apparently disregards the decisive power of America's nuclear-powered submarines. Moreover, for economic and demographic reasons Beijing has a narrow historical window in which to use its military to alter the world's power structure. If China doesn't make a major military move in the next couple decades, it probably never will.

The U.S. Navy's submarines — the unsung main defenders of the current world order — must hold the line against China for another 20 years. After that, America can declare a sort of quiet victory in the increasingly chilly Cold War with China.

How China wins

The bad news came from Lee Fuell, from the U.S. Air Force's National Air and Space Intelligence Center, during Fuell's testimony before the U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission in Washington, D.C. on Jan. 30.

For years, Chinese military planning assumed that any attack by the People's Liberation Army on Taiwan or a disputed island would have to begin with a Pearl Harbor-style preemptive missile strike by China against U.S. forces in Japan and Guam. The PLA was so afraid of overwhelming American intervention that it genuinely believed it could not win unless the Americans were removed from the battlefield before the main campaign even began.

A preemptive strike was, needless to say, a highly risky proposition. If it worked, the PLA just might secure enough space and time to defeat defending troops, seize territory, and position itself for a favorable post-war settlement.

But if China failed to disable American forces with a surprise attack, Beijing could find itself fighting a full-scale war on at least two fronts: against the country it was invading plus the full might of U.S. Pacific Command, fully mobilized and probably strongly backed by the rest of the world.

That was then. But after two decades of sustained military modernization, the Chinese military has fundamentally changed its strategy in just the last year or so. According to Fuell, recent writings by PLA officers indicate "a growing confidence within the PLA that they can more-readily withstand U.S. involvement."

The preemptive strike is off the table — and with it, the risk of a full-scale American counterattack. Instead, Beijing believes it can attack Taiwan or another neighbor while also bloodlessly deterring U.S. intervention. It would do so by deploying such overwhelmingly strong military forces — ballistic missiles, aircraft carriers, jet fighters, and the like — that Washington dare not get involved.

The knock-on effects of deterring America could be world-changing. "Backing away from our commitments to protect Taiwan, Japan, or the Philippines would be tantamount to ceding East Asia to China's domination," Roger Cliff, a fellow at the Atlantic Council, said at the same U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission hearing on Jan. 30.

Worse, the world's liberal economic order — and indeed, the whole notion of democracy — could suffer irreparable harm. "The United States has both a moral and a material interest in a world in which democratic nations can survive and thrive," Cliff asserted.

Fortunately for that liberal order, America possesses by far the world's most powerful submarine force — one poised to quickly sink any Chinese invasion fleet. In announcing its readiness to hold off the U.S. military, the PLA seems to have ignored Washington's huge undersea advantage.

 


(Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Adam K. Thomas/U.S. Navy via Getty Images)

The Silent Service

It's not surprising that Beijing would overlook America's subs. Most Americans overlook their own undersea fleet — and that's not entirely their own fault. The U.S. sub force takes pains to avoid media coverage in order to maximize its secrecy and stealth. "The submarine cruises the world's oceans unseen," the Navy stated on its Website.

Unseen and unheard. That why the sub force calls itself the "Silent Service."

The Navy has 74 submarines, 60 of which are attack or missile submarines optimized for finding and sinking other ships or blasting land targets. The balance is ballistic-missile boats that carry nuclear missiles and would not routinely participate in military campaigns short of an atomic World War III.

Thirty-three of the attack and missile boats belong to the Pacific Fleet, with major bases in Washington State, California, Hawaii, and Guam. Deploying for six months or so roughly every year and a half, America's Pacific subs frequently stop over in Japan and South Korea and occasionally even venture under the Arctic ice.

According to Adm. Cecil Haney, the former commander of Pacific Fleet subs, on any given day 17 boats are underway and eight are "forward-deployed," meaning they are on station in a potential combat zone. To the Pacific Fleet, that pretty much means waters near China.

America has several submarine types. The numerous Los Angeles-class attack boats are Cold War stalwarts that are steadily being replaced by newer Virginia-class boats with improved stealth and sensors. The secretive Seawolfs, numbering just three — all of them in the Pacific — are big, fast, and more heavily armed than other subs. The Ohio-class missile submarines are former ballistic missile boats each packing 154 cruise missile.

U.S. subs are, on average, bigger, faster, quieter, and more powerful than the rest of the world's subs. And there are more of them. The U.K. is building just seven new Astute attack boats. Russia aims to maintain around 12 modern attack subs. China is struggling to deploy a handful of rudimentary nuclear boats.

READ ENTIRE ARTICLE HERE: http://theweek.com/article/index/264032/china-thinks-it-can-defeat-america-in-battle

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commented 2014-07-10 15:07:14 -0400 · Flag
B.S. writes:

China does not “think” it can prevent us from intervening but they KNOW that Obama will not. All of this talk is just BS from talking heads who have nothing better to do. The media is ignorant of almost everything and military matters is no exception.

A Chinese invasion of Taiwan? For what purpose? Sure, saber rattling to make everyone realize China is becoming a military powerhouse, but no way an actual invasion. China has nothing to gain and a lot to lose. Realize that Taiwan is like Hong Kong for China – an outlet to the world. Have they taken full control of Hong Kong?

Could we stop them if they invaded? Taiwan is less than 100 miles from mainland China and about 90 times that from the US. We simply do not have the capability to stop them if they tried to invade and never have had it. US submarines hold the line? How could our submarines stop vertical envelopment or for that matter even a traditional amphibious assault? Would the Chinese tell us ahead of time so we could station forces near Taiwan?

Could we stop Saddam from invading Kuwait? No! Could we stop Putin from taking Crimea?
commented 2014-07-10 15:01:19 -0400 · Flag
T.N. writes:

we Do Not Have to Worry about China Defeating Us in a War scenario, we will Do that ALL that by ourselves, through inept civilian Leadership and the corresponding Apathy that Now Grips this country & its inhabitants – our new culture my take-away; China has Nothing to Fear, just like ISIS has Nothing to Fear.

The long reign of US Power is Over, government apparchik’s and self-appointed Politburo members have made this decision on behalf of all US citizens.

to quote that Great Urban Philospher: ‘can’t we all just get along’ this being the New Unifying Clarion Call of our times, who Needs a Military to protect our interests,
just make sure there is No Network interruption to my social-media feed – It is ahistorical & pathetic

welcome to the New America hombre !