Defence of Taiwan

STURM

Well-Known Member
My concern is things rapidly spiralling out of control, leading to China undertaking military action against Taiwan, resulting in the U.S. entering the equation, the result would be a major conflict involving 2 nuclear powers, both of which will not back down - a lot of prestige at stake. The effects on the region and eventually the world will be horrendous.

China would prefer not to invade or initiate hostilies, way too much at stake. It has however backed itself into a corner. If Taiwan undertakes certain actions, China will have no choice but to resort to military means. The U.S. however has also backed itself into a corner. In addition to various multilateral and bilateral treaties with a long list of cointriries, it is obligated to defend Taiwan.

It is hard to see how any middle ground can be reached between Taiwan and China. The vast majority of Taiwanese see themselves as citizens of a sovereign nation distinct from China. China desires a subserviant Taiwan which acknowledges that unification is not a matter of if but when.
 
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John Fedup

The Bunker Group
IMHO, Xi’s most fundamental concern is how hard is the US commitment to Taiwan assuming he really wants to gamble on an invasion. Although he seems to have an iron grip on the CCP, there must be elements of the party and the PLA that question whether any invasion makes sense, at least in the next 5 years. It might be better to wait and see how dysfunctional the US government and economy becomes with a GOP house win in 2022. A Trump return in 2024, probably a lose lose scenario for the entire world.
 

OPSSG

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  • #243
Part 1 of 2: China painting itself into a corner

1. Taiwan’s defence budget should be the financial expression of its military strategy, not the reverse. The right sequence is essential — getting the strategy correct first, before wargaming the sectors of each divisional battle. Because Taiwan’s procurement budget is:
(a) too small to buy the required numbers of MBTs (about 1/2 of what is needed) and SPHs (about 1/4 what is really needed), their army is over invested in keeping its multiple fleets of obsolete tanks and artillery pieces, that can’t win in a real fight; and​
(b) often spent in a way that does not make tactical sense, their troop morale is low. Each tank that Taiwan operates is older than it’s driver. It is therefore no surprise that they lack modern armoured warfare CONOPS; and Taiwan can’t adopt modern CONOPS, when the bulk of their tank fleet is obsolete due to decades of neglect. Spending a bit more over the next 5 years is not going to make up for the prior decades of neglect.​

IMHO, Xi’s most fundamental concern is how hard is the Japanese commitment to Taiwan assuming he really wants to gamble on an invasion. Although he seems to have an iron grip on the CCP, there must be elements of the party and the PLA that question whether any invasion makes sense, at least in the next 5 years.
2. Let me make one minor change to your reply, if you don’t mind. As long as Team Biden is in power (at least until 5 Nov 2024), the CCP will not attempt to invade Taiwan — as the American administration has shown a deft hand at both reassurance to Taipei and keeping a distance away from their agenda.
(a) Regarding Biden himself, it is important to remember that as a senator on the Foreign Relations Committee in 1979, he voted in favor of passing the Taiwan Relations Act, which, to this day, stands at the heart of U.S. security cooperation with the island.​
(b) Biden’s actions since then, for instance by enthusiastically supporting U.S. arms sales to Taiwan or tweeting congratulations to “President Tsai” upon her re-election (reflecting Taiwan's de facto sovereignty), have been consistent over time. If anything, his statements on China of late have become harsher, reflecting frustration with Beijing's increasingly malign behaviour.​
(c) Some have argued that the prior Trump administration actually put Taiwan in jeopardy by making it a part of the U.S.-China great power competition and at one point openly questioning the “one -China” policy. If the next U.S. President inaugurated in Jan 2025, is as sensible as Biden, we gain another 4 year for Taiwan to improve its defences.​

3. The humiliation for the hawkish but impotent Indian Government never ends, as the PLA drip feeds propaganda of their 2020 victory at the LAC. The release of the above pics is a response to the latest clash on China-India border on 28 Sep 2021; and given that Indian media claimed that Indian forces have detained PLA soldiers, the Chinese are showing detained Indian Army soldiers being released.
(a) Since 2014, 27 Indian soldiers were killed in 403 accidents due to faulty ammunition and 159 wounded apart from the cumulative losses of Rs 960 crore. According to Lt. Gen. (retired) H.S. Pangag, when India was on the brink of war in Eastern Ladakh, the huge differential in technological military capability vis-a-vis China limited Indian Army options to merely rushing to the front with large number of troops.​
(b) But Japan is not India — their JMSDF and JASDF are too strong to be pushed around by the PLA(N) — more importantly, Japanese missiles and bullets work, unlike Indian ammo. This is unlike what happened to the Indian Army at the LAC, in their skirmish with the PLA.​


4. China is still the weaker party in the 1st island chain and unless they can project power beyond the 2nd island chain, the PLA(N) don’t have escalation dominance. In Jan 2021, the Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD) has announced plans to begin mass production of an extended-range version of the domestically developed ASM-3 supersonic air-launched, anti-ship missile (ASM). The ASM-3, which has an estimated top speed of Mach 3 and a maximum range of 200 km, was jointly developed by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) and the MoD as a successor to Japan’s Type 93 series of missiles.
(a) If you want to look at it from a 5 to 15 year perspective, Japan’s political and military responses are far more important to Taiwan — the economic dimension of Beijing’s coercion towards Taipei is not to be underestimated — as the Japanese play a key role in encircling the Chinese (by leadership of the CPTTP). Taiwan applied to join CPTPP on 22 Sep 2021.​
(b) As a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) participant, the JASDF has an established program of record of 147 F-35 Aircraft, consisting of 105 F-35 A models and up to 42 F-35 B models. In 2020, the JASDF activated their second F-35A squadron, the 301st TFS. By early 2031 or 10 years from now, all 42 Japanese F-35Bs will be in operational service, available for tasking on JMSDF carriers or on small island air strips — at that time, PLA(N) carriers are still not a match against their Japanese counter-parts.​
(c) With 17 V-22s, the JASDF can insert troops, fly F-35Bs on converted roads to runways and fly spare fighter engines into Taiwan, even if Taiwan is blockaded by the PLA(N) submarines. By 2026 to 2028, the JMSDF will be a 2 STOVL carrier navy and its vote will matter in any Taiwan hostilities — which enables the concentration of naval power by Japan at chokepoints of its choice.​
(d) Given that the unipolar American moment has passed, IMHO Team Biden and it’s successor administration will only act against PLA hostilities if an ally or partner is committed to an action. This is the reason that Secretary Austin’s Singapore lecture has a section called "The Imperative of Partnership;" and his vision of ‘integrated deterrence,’ uses existing military capabilities, and builds new ones. All in the hope of deploying these military capabilities in ways that are tailored to a region's security landscape.​

5. To my simple mind, I believe that long term demographic trends in China makes it less likely war will occur after 2049 — the simple goal for Taiwan is to play the delay game. The number of newborns in China in 2020 was 12 million, down from 14.65 million in 2019, and China's fertility rate of women of childbearing age was 1.3, a relatively low level, according to the census. I just don’t think that China is that stupid at a geo-strategic level — it’s like the US invasion of Iraq under Bush II — that level of stupid — as there is only a small window of China at peak power before demographics catches up. An invasion is a lose-lose-lose action, no matter how you game outcome from a Chinese perspective.

6. If China invaded Taiwan, the PLA’s self image and reputation as protector of Chinese people to pacify this ethnic Chinese island will be immense. This is not to say that the PLA, as the armed wing of the CCP, does not need the ability to threaten an invasion to influence Taiwanese domestic politics.

7. As troubling as the trend-lines of Chinese behavior are, it would be a mistake to infer that they represent a prelude to an unalterable catastrophe. China's top priority now and in the foreseeable future is to deter Taiwan independence rather than compel unification. Beijing remains confident in its capacity to achieve this near-term objective, even as it sets the groundwork for its long-term goal of unification. Indeed, based on polling on attitudes regarding defence, the people of Taiwan already are sober to the risks of pursuing independence.
 
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OPSSG

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Part 2 of 2: China painting itself into a corner

8. Have a read of my six prior posts (The Taiwan factor in regional calculations) and let me know what you think.

(a) Under President Tsai, the Taiwanese have developed an incomplete military modernisation plan that has significant execution risk. If this plan can be improved over the years, it can enhance deterrence but right now, it only serves illustrate the deficiencies in Taiwan’s war plans. Below is an interesting article on the PLA(N) Marine Corps that is a dagger to the geo-strategic throat of Taiwan.​

(b) Currently, Taiwan has downsized its ground forces to the point of incredulity. The ROC Army is down to around 150,000 soldiers, far less than the 215,000 troops the Taiwanese MND says it needs to repel an invasion. Moreover, the conscription period has been cut to just 4 months. As I explained before, this is not enough time to train a soldier. They even lack sufficient bullets for marksmanship training — ensuring they have soldiers who can’t shoot.​
(c) And while Taiwan says that it can count on 1.5 million reservists, they train only 5 days every 2 years (if they are called up at all), “during which time they typically perform simple chores and not weapons training.” The general public in Taiwan is at a deep level unserious about their own defence. They don’t even know what are CBMs for military-to-military relations. I find that they are so childish in their approach to international relations matters.​
(d) IMHO, it’s not just that the Taiwanese do not trust the CCP, even the pacifist Japanese politicians are allergic to President Xi’s (might = right) approach to the geo-political game.​

OPSSG, thanks for your lengthy posts. It's easy to forget that mods are unpaid, and I doubt you're able to knock long posts like that in just a few minutes. There's little point in me saying all the things I agree with as it would take much too long.

You're right that strictly speaking if Beijing were looking for reasons to declare war, it probably would have done so by now. My concern is that that the CCP's policies have somewhat painted itself into a corner regarding how to resolve the political problem.
9. Thank you for your kind words and letting me learn from you too. I hope that wisdom will prevail in Beijing, Tokyo and Washington to keep the current status quo — keeping the issues at hand as political problems to solve (and not a military one). Beijing will choose to back down, if Taiwan and Japan are willing to put in the effort to invest in deterrence.

(a) Beyond the forward deployed USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), the US Navy has begun to put less obvious resources into the 7th Fleet to enable the command and control of US troops, should they need to be deployed into Taiwan on short notice. This includes USS Miguel Keith (a Lewis B. Puller-class expeditionary staging base). The Miguel Keith has the third-largest flight deck in the fleet and will remain in the Indo-Pacific for the foreseeable future.​
(b) IMHO, USS Miguel Keith and USS Blue Ridge are certainly targets for PLA(N) submarines, should there be hostilities in the 2030 to 2049 time frame. Once the Hunter-class ASW frigates come online, these Australian vessels will play a key part in protecting high value targets like the USS Miguel Keith, USN carriers and LHAs.​

(c) China’s military-civil fusion (军民融合) development strategy is helping the PLA acquire COTS technologies, both from private Chinese technology companies and sources outside of China.​
 
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AndrewS

New Member
Part 1 of 2: China painting itself into a corner

…​
(d) Given that the unipolar American moment has passed, IMHO Team Biden and it’s successor administration will only act against PLA hostilities if an ally or partner is committed to an action. This is the reason that Secretary Austin’s Singapore lecture has a section called "The Imperative of Partnership;" and his vision of ‘integrated deterrence,’ uses existing military capabilities, and builds new ones. All in the hope of deploying these military capabilities in ways that are tailored to a region's security landscape.​

5. To my simple mind, I believe that long term demographic trends in China makes it less likely war will occur after 2049 — the simple goal for Taiwan is to play the delay game. The number of newborns in China in 2020 was 12 million, down from 14.65 million in 2019, and China's fertility rate of women of childbearing age was 1.3, a relatively low level, according to the census. I just don’t think that China is that stupid at a geo-strategic level — it’s like the US invasion of Iraq under Bush II — that level of stupid — as there is only a small window of China at peak power before demographics catches up. An invasion is a lose-lose-lose action, no matter how you game outcome from a Chinese perspective.

6. If China invaded Taiwan, the PLA’s self image and reputation as protector of Chinese people to pacify this ethnic Chinese island will be immense. This is not to say that the PLA, as the armed wing of the CCP, does not need the ability to threaten an invasion to influence Taiwanese domestic politics.

7. As troubling as the trend-lines of Chinese behavior are, it would be a mistake to infer that they represent a prelude to an unalterable catastrophe. China's top priority now and in the foreseeable future is to deter Taiwan independence rather than compel unification. Beijing remains confident in its capacity to achieve this near-term objective, even as it sets the groundwork for its long-term goal of unification. Indeed, based on polling on attitudes regarding defence, the people of Taiwan already are sober to the risks of pursuing independence.
The Chinese economy is currently around $28 Trillion in PPP terms, which is somewhat larger than the USA.
They've also set a target of 6% growth per year, and believe they can do this
Over the next 10 years, that works out as an additional $22 Trillion of economic output per year, which is roughly an entire USA

Whilst the Chinese economy could fail, I agree with Lee Kuan Yew that China has an 80% chance of becoming a prosperous hi-tech society.

The Australian government white papers also have China with an economy twice the size of the USA in the 2030-2035 timeframe
And this all happens before we really see any real effects from demographic decline in China

If China maintains military spending at a modest 1.7% of GDP, that works out as $850 Billion per year. So I really struggle to see how anyone can prevent the Chinese military from obtaining complete air superiority and ground force superiority over Taiwan. China adds a Japan-sized economy every 3-4 years, so I struggle to see how much Japan can really help. Japan will be hard pressed to maintain control over Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands, never mind intervene in Taiwan

Other points to note include:

1. A militarised US and Russia routinely spend more than twice the 1.7% level of Chinese military spending. The implication is that China has far more scope to increase military spending in the event of a Cold War arms race. At the moment, China continues to focus on domestic economic development rather than on the military. After all there are still 600 million who only earn $5 per day, as per the words of Li Keqiang on the Politburo.

2. Economically, China would be far more important and influential than today in Asia and also globally. But particularly to Taiwan which is next door.

3. Lastly, in 15 years time, China will be a very different place. The Chinese population would be approaching high-income levels and be far more middle-class. The current generation of political leaders will also be replaced by a milder generation who weren't forged during the chaos and viciousness of the Cultural Revolution
 
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AndrewS

New Member
4. China is still the weaker party in the 1st island chain and unless they can project power beyond the 2nd island chain, the PLA(N) don’t have escalation dominance. If you want to look at it from a 5 to 15 year perspective, Japan’s political and military responses are far more important to Taiwan…
…​
(b) As a Foreign Military Sales (FMS) participant, the JASDF has an established program of record of 147 F-35 Aircraft, consisting of 105 F-35 A models and up to 42 F-35 B models. In 2020, the JASDF activated their second F-35A squadron, the 301st TFS. By early 2031 or 10 years from now, all 42 Japanese F-35Bs will be in operational service, available for tasking on JMSDF carriers or on small island air strips — at that time, PLA(N) carriers are still not a match against their Japanese counter-parts.​
(c) With 17 V-22s, the JASDF can insert troops, fly F-35Bs on converted roads to runways and fly spare fighter engines into Taiwan, even if Taiwan is blockaded by the PLA(N) submarines. By 2026 to 2028, the JMSDF will be a 2 STOVL carrier navy and its vote will matter in any Taiwan hostilities — which enables the concentration of naval power by Japan at chokepoints of its choice.​
By 2030, the PLAN should have 2-3 new carriers almost the same size as US carriers and with catapults
Furthermore, the a Chinese J-35 stealth fighter would be in service on those carriers. The J-20 only took 6 years from first flight to initial operational capability.
This is all in addition to the 2 existing ski-jump carriers

So I see Chinese carriers completely overmatching their Japanese counterparts, even before we take into account developments in the Rocket Force, the Air Force and the rest of the Navy

By 2030, I reckon the PLAAF will anywhere from 300-600 J-20s and 100-200 Y-20U airborne tankers
The H-20 strategic stealth bomber and the GJ-11 tactical stealth bomber should also be in service, along with other UAVs and UCAVs

All these can conduct missions deep into the Pacific, the Ryukyu Islands and over Kyushu on the Japanese Home Islands

---
All this assumes Chinese military spending remains at a modest level of 1.7% of GDP
 
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ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
The Chinese economy is currently around $28 Trillion in PPP terms, which is somewhat larger than the USA.
They've also set a target of 6% growth per year, and believe they can do this
Over the next 10 years, that works out as an additional $22 Trillion of economic output per year, which is roughly an entire USA

Whilst the Chinese economy could fail, I agree with Lee Kuan Yew that China has an 80% chance of becoming a prosperous hi-tech society.

The Australian government white papers also have China with an economy twice the size of the USA in the 2030-2035 timeframe
And this all happens before we really see any real effects from demographic decline in China

If China maintains military spending at a modest 1.7% of GDP, that works out as $850 Billion per year. So I really struggle to see how anyone can prevent the Chinese military from obtaining complete air superiority and ground force superiority over Taiwan. China adds a Japan-sized economy every 3-4 years, so I struggle to see how much Japan can really help. Japan will be hard pressed to maintain control over Okinawa and the Ryukyu Islands, never mind intervene in Taiwan

Other points to note include:

1. A militarised US and Russia routinely spend more than twice the 1.7% level of Chinese military spending. The implication is that China has far more scope to increase military spending in the event of a Cold War arms race. At the moment, China continues to focus on domestic economic development rather than on the military. After all there are still 600 million who only earn $5 per day, as per the words of Li Keqiang on the Politburo.

2. Economically, China would be far more important and influential than today in Asia and also globally. But particularly to Taiwan which is next door.

3. Lastly, in 15 years time, China will be a very different place. The Chinese population would be approaching high-income levels and be far more middle-class. The current generation of political leaders will also be replaced by a milder generation who weren't forged during the chaos and viciousness of the Cultural Revolution
By 2030, the PLAN should have 2-3 new carriers almost the same size as US carriers and with catapults
Furthermore, the a Chinese J-35 stealth fighter would be in service on those carriers. The J-20 only took 6 years from first flight to initial operational capability.
This is all in addition to the 2 existing ski-jump carriers

So I see Chinese carriers completely overmatching their Japanese counterparts, even before we take into account developments in the Rocket Force, the Air Force and the rest of the Navy

By 2030, I reckon the PLAAF will anywhere from 300-600 J-20s and 100-200 Y-20U airborne tankers
The H-20 strategic stealth bomber and the GJ-11 tactical stealth bomber should also be in service, along with other UAVs and UCAVs

All these can conduct missions deep into the Pacific, the Ryukyu Islands and over Kyushu on the Japanese Home Islands

---
All this assumes Chinese military spending remains at a modest level of 1.7% of GDP
But PRC defence spending isn't at 1.7% GDP is it? It would be somewhat more because it never discloses its actual defence spending. Like most other things the CCP lies or refuses to answer basic questions.

It's one thing to have nice flash new carriers, possibly even one or two CATOBAR, but it's another thing being able to operate them properly and efficiently. That takes time and not something that you can do in 10 minutes. It takes decades to master and that's just the carrier itself. There's also the CBG and how you sail and fight it as a battle group and as its individual components. It takes decades to work all that up and finesse the finer parts, building the expertise and institutional knowledge. Then just maybe you might be able to take on the USN and RN CBG and survive.
 

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member
The Chinese economy is currently around $28 Trillion in PPP terms, which is somewhat larger than the USA.
They've also set a target of 6% growth per year, and believe they can do this
Over the next 10 years, that works out as an additional $22 Trillion of economic output per year, which is roughly an entire USA
...........

3. Lastly, in 15 years time, China will be a very different place. The Chinese population would be approaching high-income levels and be far more middle-class.
That sounds like an awfully optimistic view given China's demographic crisis, not least because if we're talking about 2035 it's already too late to change China's demographic trajectory. Even if Chinese women spent the next 15 years on their backs closing their eyes and thinking of the CCP, that won't produce any new workers by that date.

It also presumes the severe problems with the housing market and electricity generation during a period when China needs to reduce its CO2 emissions will barely slow the economy.

The current generation of political leaders will also be replaced by a milder generation who weren't forged during the chaos and viciousness of the Cultural Revolution
No, they'll have just been raised during the era of vicious ethno-nationalism, where racism against non-Han people is widely acceptable, and officials/politicians get purged because they're not in favour with the then government. So no reason at all to believe Chinese politicians would not continue to be confrontational and short-sightened when it comes to foreign relations.
 

AndrewS

New Member
But PRC defence spending isn't at 1.7% GDP is it? It would be somewhat more because it never discloses its actual defence spending. Like most other things the CCP lies or refuses to answer basic questions.
The official defence spending is lower at 1.3%
SIPRI put it at 1.7%
DOD put it at I think 2.5% maximum

However you look at it, China spends far less than the US or Russia which are usually at 3.5%-4%

It's one thing to have nice flash new carriers, possibly even one or two CATOBAR, but it's another thing being able to operate them properly and efficiently. That takes time and not something that you can do in 10 minutes. It takes decades to master and that's just the carrier itself. There's also the CBG and how you sail and fight it as a battle group and as its individual components. It takes decades to work all that up and finesse the finer parts, building the expertise and institutional knowledge. Then just maybe you might be able to take on the USN and RN CBG and survive.
We're talking about a 2030 timeframe
One can reasonably assume 10 years is enough to become proficient
 
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AndrewS

New Member
That sounds like an awfully optimistic view given China's demographic crisis, not least because if we're talking about 2035 it's already too late to change China's demographic trajectory. Even if Chinese women spent the next 15 years on their backs closing their eyes and thinking of the CCP, that won't produce any new workers by that date.

It also presumes the severe problems with the housing market and electricity generation during a period when China needs to reduce its CO2 emissions will barely slow the economy.
Well, remember that Japan faces the same demographic issues
We will just have to see how it turns out

No, they'll have just been raised during the era of vicious ethno-nationalism, where racism against non-Han people is widely acceptable, and officials/politicians get purged because they're not in favour with the then government. So no reason at all to believe Chinese politicians would not continue to be confrontational and short-sightened when it comes to foreign relations.
Purges these days are a lot less fatal than during the cultural revolution

Communist party orthodoxy is that everyone is equal and that is the politically correct line.
Most of the minorities have already been assimilated or are well on the way

Remember that the Han Chinese account for 91% of the population in China
Or in other words, each ethnic minority is outnumbered 10-to-1 by the Han Chinese
So the government doesn't feel any need to stoke ethnic fears.
Most Han Chinese find ethnic minorities a novelty because they are so rare

The exception here of course are the Muslim Uyghurs, but they account for less than 1% of the population
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
Well, remember that Japan faces the same demographic issues
We will just have to see how it turns out



Purges these days are a lot less fatal than during the cultural revolution

Communist party orthodoxy is that everyone is equal and that is the politically correct line.
Most of the minorities have already been assimilated or are well on the way

Remember that the Han Chinese account for 91% of the population in China
Or in other words, each ethnic minority is outnumbered 10-to-1 by the Han Chinese
So the government doesn't feel any need to stoke ethnic fears.
Most Han Chinese find ethnic minorities a novelty because they are so rare

The exception here of course are the Muslim Uyghurs, but they account for less than 1% of the population
Please provide links to reliable reputable sources as required by the rules. Failure to do so will result in the Moderators considering sanctions against you.
 

OPSSG

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Part 1 of 5: An attempt to debunk CCP myth making

By 2030, the PLAN should have 2-3 new carriers almost the same size as US carriers and with catapults
Furthermore, the a Chinese J-35 stealth fighter would be in service on those carriers…
1. Kindly forgive my frank response to follow on some of your more problematic ideas. In prior posts, I used D=FxA to explain why no fighting has occurred — in reality the PLA’s willingness or ability to use force on Taiwan is low. This is because the PLA(N) has an awareness of its weaknesses (in trying to break out of the 4 Japanese controlled chokepoints at war time), than you give the Chinese credit.
(a) Since the first Chinese carrier Liaoning commissioned in 2012, the PLA(N) has steadily developed a basic naval aviation capability. Having carriers and knowing how to operate a carrier strike group effectively at a doctrinal level by 2031 are slightly different things. As it stands, Chinese ability to use force (or A) in a disputed area, is very low due to the overwhelming military superiority it faces in respect of the 7th Fleet and the JMSDF’s 4 escort fleets. The PLA(N) may out number their enemy in number of ships and in tonnage but in RCP terms, the Americans and Japanese have enough combat power in Japan alone to prevail against attacks for months, until reinforcements get to them in the Pacific theatre of war, should conflict arise.​
(b) On news that China is building a 3rd carrier, Adm. Chris Grady, commander of U.S. Fleet Forces said:​
“Lot of blood, lot of loss of life, a lot of sweat and tears to make naval aviation work. We’ve got a huge lead and one that will continue to expand into the future. Go ahead and build that big ship, but to build the eco-system that is naval aviation that brings that ship to life – that’s going to take a lot of hard work and time.”​
(c) Like Adm. Grady, I am of the view that the PLA(N) has done very well but from a low base, with no prior institutional knowledge of carrier operations. They have much to be proud of, in taking big steps to advance their CONOPS, with even the U.S. having to relearn past lessons.​
(d) With 10 jets and 180 U.S. Marines forming the squadron, deployments will help the U.S. Marine Corps determine not only whether it has the right number of aircraft, but also if it has the correct number and kind of personnel and overall maintenance procedures. The U.S. Marines are hoping the 7 month deployment will also showcase what a large formation of 18 F-35Bs on HMS Queen Elizabeth, are capable of.​

So I see Chinese carriers completely overmatching their Japanese counterparts, even before we take into account developments in the Rocket Force, the Air Force and the rest of the Navy
2. IMHO, your thinking about sea control and sea denial around the waters near Japan and Taiwan have no basis in reality — the Japanese don’t plan to fight alone and as an ally, the Americans, will brace themselves for the losses to come for the 7th fleet to achieve sea control. Sea control does not mean command of all the seas, all the time. Rather, it is the capability and capacity to impose localized control of the sea when and where it is required to enable other objectives and to hold it as long as necessary to accomplish those objectives.
(a) The joint force of E-2Ds, F-35Bs, F-35Cs, F-18E/Fs, and Growlers, to be deployed on JMSDF, USN and RN carriers are not just there to strike at PLA(N) carriers but to serve as sensor platforms to force the Chinese Navy to concentrate forces, to survive and escape the 1st island chain. Once the PLA(N) concentrates, it’s happy hunting days for the lurking USN and JMSDF submarines, KHI P-1s, Boeing P-As, or even the USAF bombers — a single B-52 aircraft can carry 20 LRASMs, so a flight of 4 will fire a salvo of 80 missiles in their sea denial role; whoever can get there first. The PLA(N) task groups are very far away from being truly competent in ASW or even air warfare (despite all the investments). Competence will come in time, with cycles of refinement.​
(b) What matters, in the period from 2021 to 2031, for the JSDF is execution (including the JMSDF’s superb ship building plans that see new models rollout like clockwork); IMO, increasing the number of hulls matter — as one ship can’t be in two places at the same time. Like the JMSDF’s Mogami-class frigates, the U.S. Navy has plan for purchasing Constellation class frigates. Under this proposal, the U.S. Navy would buy 15 of these ships, up from 10, between FY2022 — 2026. In addition, the service would hire a second shipyard to help meet this increased demand.​
(c) The PLA(N) is about 3 times the size of the JMSDF and the gap is widening, as Chinese ship building ramps up. But increased hull numbers is not the only story. Today, it’s an integrated air-sea battle in 3 dimensions — failure in any dimension is a mission kill. Please read up on:​

(i) the missile and bomb load of F-35Bs, in a sea control mission on the America class, Izumo class and Queen Elizabeth class carriers;​

(iii) Japanese anti-ship and anti-air missile developments like the ASM-3 (a supersonic air-launched missile), that is uniquely suited for use in the Japanese controlled chokepoints.​
By 2030, I reckon the PLAAF will anywhere from 300-600 J-20s and 100-200 Y-20U airborne tankers
The H-20 strategic stealth bomber and the GJ-11 tactical stealth bomber should also be in service, along with other UAVs and UCAVs
3. In specific battles, the Chinese J-20 numbers and the existence of the H-20 can help, but the help is less than you think. Due to the sheer number of AWACS operated by the JMSDF that can be used to enhance the situational awareness of their air and naval forces, they have a plan to counter Chinese plans. The Japanese don’t just have better pilots. Rather, they have a system designed to defeat the PLA(N) and PLAAF, even when fighting out numbered and knowing that the enemy has some LO platforms in play.

(a) In Dec 2019 report, it was revealed that PLAAF’s Su-27s was losing engagements in a Nov 2015 joint exercise with the 701 Fighter Squadron of the Royal Thai Air Force (RTAF). In subsequent exercises the PLAAF fared better by sending the Chengdu J-10A - and then in 2019 the J-10C - in place of the Su-27.​
(i) Senior Colonel Li Chunghua Hua pointed out that the J-10C was more of a match for the JAS-39C/D in that “its active array radar significantly improves detection distance and multi-target attack capability, the DSI (divertless) air intake of the J-10C reduces the radar intercept area while the PL-15 missile increases the range, making it an over-the-horizon platform.”​
(ii) Like the J-10, which needed a period of refinement until the ‘C’ version, both the J-20 and J-35 need time to mature their tactics, to overcome platform limitations.​
 
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cdxbow

Well-Known Member
That sounds like an awfully optimistic view given China's demographic crisis, not least because if we're talking about 2035 it's already too late to change China's demographic trajectory. Even if Chinese women spent the next 15 years on their backs closing their eyes and thinking of the CCP, that won't produce any new workers by that date......
Can I see the propaganda poster encouraging that behavior? Please.

I'd also like to also thank OPSSG for his insightful, detailed and informative posts. None better on the internet or in the media. Thank you.
 
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OPSSG

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Part 2 of 5: An attempt to debunk CCP myth making

(b) A tertiary air force has to have a robust capability perform the 4 roles of air power in a contested environment, within its threat matrix. In Nov 2015, the RTAF did not have a robust capability in all 4 roles, when compared to the capability of Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) in 1990. Just think about it. The PLAAF struggles against the RTAF in 2015, who are no match for even Singapore in 1990; and you tell me that the average Chinese fighter jockey intends to fight the entire JASDF, at a systems level in 2021 to 2031, and hope to win? On what basis do you make that call?​
(c) Before I go on, let me spell out certain abbreviations:​
(i) AI = Artificial Intelligence;​
(ii) CONOPS = Concept of Operations;​
(iii) CBMs = Confidence Building Measures​
(iv) ECA = Enemy Cause of Action;​
(v) EW = Electronic Warfare includes three major subdivisions: electronic attack, electronic protection, and electronic warfare support;​
(vi) HADR = Humanitarian Assistance / Disaster Relief;​
(vi) OCA = Own Cause of Action;​
(vii) OPSEC = Operational Security;​
(viii) OODA = Observe, Orient, Decide, Act;​
(ix) RCP = Relative Combat Power;​
(x) STOVL = Short TakeOff Vertical Landing;​
(xi) NEO = Non-combatant Evacuation;​
(xii) ISR = Intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance; and;​
(xiii) LO = Low observable or stealth.​
(d) Further, it was reported that a PLA military source who spoke on condition of anonymity said the J-15 is so overweight that, “even the US Navy’s new generation C13-2 steam catapult launch engines that are installed on Nimitz-class aircraft carriers, would struggle to launch the aircraft efficiently.” This has prompted SAC to pour significant resources into the J-35, which is 22,000 lbs. lighter and carries its missiles in an internal weapons bay to maintain the aircraft’s radar signature.​
All these can conduct missions deep into the Pacific, the Ryukyu Islands and over Kyushu on the Japanese Home Islands
4. Really? In the face of opposition by the US sea services?! All 3 have come together to shape a maritime balance of power favorable to the U.S. in order to offset China’s advantages. The current U.S. maritime strategy is entitled “Advantage at Sea: Prevailing with Integrated All-Domain Naval Power”. Shi Xiaoqin and Liu Xiaobo of the PLA(N), have studied this as an academic research exercise and noted, as follows:
“The document proposes five ways to implement the strategy:​
(i) fully exploit and integrate the particular advantages of the three services, in order to create a comprehensive, all-domain maritime force;​
(ii) strengthen relations between the U.S. and its allies and partners, in the belief that this is America’s primary strategic advantage in long-term strategic competition;​
(iii) adopt more resolute actions in day-to-day competition in peacetime in order to stop America’s strategic competitors from conducting military operations;​
(iv) during conflict, the goal of U.S. maritime forces will be sea control; it will defeat the enemy’s military forces and protect the U.S. while defending its allies; and​
(v) conduct bold modernization and reform of the future maritime force in order to maintain credible deterrence and keep America’s maritime advantage.”​
 
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MrConservative

Super Moderator
Staff member
The Chinese economy is currently around $28 Trillion in PPP terms, which is somewhat larger than the USA.
They've also set a target of 6% growth per year, and believe they can do this
Over the next 10 years, that works out as an additional $22 Trillion of economic output per year, which is roughly an entire USA
Where the real economic power is my friend is that 56.9% of all distributed global equity has been built up by one country in particular over the last 150 years is guess? China is over ten times less.
 

OPSSG

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Part 3 of 5: An attempt to debunk CCP myth making

5. Since 2020, the U.S. Marines have made considerable progress, publishing doctrine, investing in new capabilities, examining the application of new operating concepts, new equipment, refining organizational structure, and generating improved tactics, techniques and procedures (TTPs) to accelerate the implementation of Force Design 2030 to win the fight in the littorals. On Force Design 2030, Gen. David Berger, Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, wrote:

"The 2018 National Defense Strategy redirected the Marine Corps’ mission focus from countering violent extremists in the Middle East to great power/peer-level competition, with special emphasis on the Indo-Pacific. Such a profound shift in missions, from inland to littoral, and from non-state actor to peer competitor, necessarily requires substantial adjustments in how we organize, train, and equip our Corps. A return to our historic role in the maritime littoral will also demand greater integration with the Navy and a reaffirmation of that strategic partnership. As a consequence, we must transform our traditional models for organizing, training, and equipping the force to meet new desired ends, and do so in full partnership with the Navy."​

6. The current strategy for Japan (under a LDP Government) is picking it’s outlying islands (like Yonaguni, Iriomote, Miyako, Ishigaki) or Taiwan, as the location for the right JMSDF battle; and it has started to acquire the platforms needed to execute the littoral battles to bring forces into Taiwan.
 
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seaspear

Active Member
Would it be fair to suggest that satellite warfare would also be critical in any planning because without that information as the Prussian military analyst Carl von Clausewitz's essay "the fog of war" becomes perhaps literal again?
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
Would it be fair to suggest that satellite warfare would also be critical in any planning because without that information as the Prussian military analyst Carl von Clausewitz's essay "the fog of war" becomes perhaps literal again?
The US and other allies are most likely working on backup solutions to satellite comms and nav. Perhaps the mysterious X-37 is part of the solution. Stealthy drones will also be a potential backup for some areas.
 

OPSSG

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@seaspear, good to see you back from your posting holiday, last year. Thank you for the links and taking the topic into space — so may the force be with you.

Let me share a few guidance notes below, which is directed to anyone intending to post here:


One, this thread is primarily about the defence of Taiwan and its immediate threat matrix aka the PLA specifically but not entire posts about the Chinese economy.

Two, on-topic discussions include Taiwan geo-politics related news (with links provided by default, as minimum) or on National Security concerns related to the 1st island chain.

Three, given Taiwan’s limited defence budget, there no space capability in the ROC military, therefore off-topic on a real defence discussion. The moderators have enough work to do (with corrections on fanboi inspired Taiwan or Japan defence capability myths), to be bothered to go to space or engage in permanent myth busting.

Four,
preferably there must be some link helping the reader understand the military capability of the ROC Army, ROC Navy, ROC Air Force or its interface with corresponding counter-parts in the JSDF and US Military Forces (in Japan, Guam, Hawaii and so on), going forward.

If fact based, disciplined discussions on Taiwan is not continued, the thread will get closed.
 
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seaspear

Active Member
I found this post demonstrating the use of civilian ships by the P.L.A.N for the carrying of armoured vehicles in an exercise for landings it does state Taiwan as such an objective, If true does this suggest civilian ships under the control of the state should be considered in addition to regular P.L.A.N vessels capable of presenting a threat, I would understand that such ships would require a port to unload but a then large number vehicles in addition to those carried by the regular lhd ships could be overwhelming
In regards to Taiwan's space capability or present lack of by the military, these articles suggest reasons should be involved in gaining such and present programs operating out of Australia in the launch of space programs to do such, though its main use may be civilian perhaps military capabilities can be accessed
This article by Reuters suggests that Taiwan has actively pursued closer security ties with other countries with a mutual view of China posturing
 
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