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Chinese navy grows new muscle to flex in region

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  • Chinese navy grows new muscle to flex in region

    I've been keeping Mike & David updated as to some of the friction I've been seeing recently where I live & elsewhere in China due to the current tension with Japan over the Senkaku Islands. On a related note, this news on their fleet build up will undoubtedly be part of their successful strategy on bullying their neighbors into making concessions on disputed territories in the region.

    In the latest step in its naval modernisation and expansion, China recently announced that it was accelerating serial production of an advanced destroyer. This will tilt the regional balance of power at sea in its favour and put it in a stronger position to enforce its sovereignty claims over Taiwan and in the South and East China seas.

    Yet the significance of this development and earlier moves to re-shape the Chinese navy has tended to be overshadowed by news about China's refurbished Soviet-era aircraft carrier, which has just completed its 10th sea trial. In fact, if the 60,000-tonne carrier becomes the nominal flagship of the Chinese navy, it is still quite a way from operational readiness. Even in service, it will have a limited role, mainly for training and evaluation before the expected launch of China's first home-built carriers after 2015. Meanwhile, several decades of double-digit growth in military spending and improvements in Chinese naval engineering are producing a fleet that is primarily focused on regional maritime dominance and deterring US intervention in any potential conflict over Taiwan or in the South and East China seas, where Beijing contests control of disputed islands and maritime resources with south-east Asian countries and Japan.

    The Chinese navy is ''acquiring the hardware it needs to prosecute a major regional naval showdown'', according to Andrew Erickson and Gabe Collins, two leading US analysts of Chinese military developments. Latest reports in the Chinese media say that the sixth destroyer in the Type 052C Luyang II-class has been launched and that the shipyard that builds them in Shanghai is laying down an average of two hulls per year. The Global Times , controlled by the Communist Party, reported on September 5 that a new destroyer under construction in the shipyard in a nearby hangar ''appears to be the Type 052D, the 052C's successor''. It said that mass production of the destroyer was ''the highlight in the second wave of massive (naval) shipbuilding after 2000'', and that the six Type 052Cs were launched at very short intervals since the end of 2010, with at least one of them already commissioned this year. ''As the most sophisticated combat ships, Aegis destroyers are commonly referred to as air-defence destroyers equipped with phased array radars and modern ship-to-air missiles, which enable the ships to provide regional air defence shields for the entire fleet,'' the newspaper reported.

    The Type 052D is described by Japanese and US specialists as a stealthy, 6000-tonne destroyer with 64 vertical launch cannisters embedded in the hull to enable quick firing of anti-air, anti-ship, or land-attack missiles. This makes the new Chinese warship somewhat smaller in size and firepower than the US Navy's Arleigh Burke-class destoyers and Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruisers.

    But Toshi Yoshihara and James Holmes, who wrote a book on the growth of China's navy, say that the latest Chinese destroyer still ''packs a punch for localised conflicts in Asian waters''. Taiwan is concerned that Chinese Type 052Ds deployed to Pacific waters east of Taiwan in a crisis could work in tandem with mainland forces and in effect surround the island's air defences, mounting a threat from all sides to Taiwanese planes and missiles. Taiwanese analysts expect China to build at least 10 of the Type 052Ds to add to the six Type 052Cs, creating a fleet of 16 Aegis-equivalent warships. By contrast, Japan and South Korea, the only other Asian military powers with such destroyers, have six and three Aegis-equipped warships respectively. This would enable the Chinese navy to face any Asian fleet with good prospects of success, though not the US Navy.

    In its latest annual report to Congress on the Chinese military in May, the US Defence Department said that China had the largest force of warships, submarines and amphibious vessels in Asia, with almost 80 major surface combatants, more than 50 submarines, about 50 amphibious and landing ships, and some 85 smaller, missile-armed fast attack craft. China has been building and putting into service an increasing number of ships that would enable it to achieve its objectives in Taiwan and the South and East China seas. They are expected to include up to eight 20,000-tonne amphibious landing ships that can carry as many as 800 troops, as well as hovercraft, armoured vehicles and helicopters. At least two such ships are in service.

    Last month, China commissioned its first Type 056 corvette, an 1800-tonne warship armed with anti-ship missiles and able to operate in relatively shallow waters. Nine more are under construction and at least 16 are planned.

    Since 2004, China has also deployed a fleet of about 60 Houbei-class fast attack missile boats. With catamaran hulls made of aluminium and a shallow draft, these vessels appear tailor-made for the atoll and reef-strewn disputed waters of the South China Sea.

    Yoshihara and Holmes say that the Chinese destroyers, frigates, amphibious landing ships, corvettes and Houbei missile boats could be used to form expeditionary strike groups that would easily outmatch those deployed by south-east Asian navies. Such fleets ''would be particularly well-suited to seize islands in the South China Sea'', they add. China's regionally focused military may still be no match for US might. But it could clearly overwhelm individual Asian rivals and raise the cost of US intervention - perhaps to unacceptably high levels.

    The writer is a visiting senior research fellow at the Institute of South East Asian Studies in Singapore.

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  • #2
    Video of China's first carrier, Landing and take off.


    • #3
      Its already proven to be an effective, dare I say, deadly weapon on its first day of flight ops. :wink:

      Shenyang Aircraft Engineer Praised For Heroic Sacrifice To Motherland

      China’s government gave hero’s praise on Monday to a senior engineer on its aircraft carrier programme who died of a heart attack after witnessing the first landing of a plane on the ship, underscoring the project’s huge national prestige.

      State broadcaster CCTV ran news of Luo Yuan’s death as its first item on the noon news broadcast, an unusual honour for a scientist who was previously unknown outside of the carrier programme. Luo, 51, oversaw the development of the J-15 fighter-bomber planes designated for the ship, which is called Liaoning after the province where it is based.

      The coverage illustrates the priority Beijing has placed on the programme, seen as representing China’s rise from poverty to economic and political might over the past three decades. The carrier was built in the former Soviet Union and is seen as a test platform for future Chinese-built vessels.

      Few details were available about Luo, who died on Sunday. A man who answered the phone at his employer, Shenyang Aircraft, confirmed his death but declined to give details. The company produces the bulk of China’s modern military jets – many of them, like the J-15, derived from Russian models.

      Chinese academics assigned to signature government projects such as the carrier are often under enormous pressure, and stress is considered among the biggest killers of the country’s intellectuals. China overcame major technical hurdles to make the carrier seaworthy after buying the half-completed hulk from the Ukraine and towing it to China, minus its engines, weaponry and navigation systems.

      Most of that work was carried out in the northeastern port of Dalian, to which the carrier returned on Sunday following its latest round of sea trials.

      The landing marked the debut of the J-15 as the nation’s first generation multipurpose carrier-borne fighter jet, Xinhua said. Shenyang Aircraft, dubbed the “cradle of China’s fighter aircraft”, has built several thousand fighter jets over past 50 years, according to its website.

      Despite the breakthrough in air operations, the ship is still years away from being battle-worthy. China’s navy still needs to show it can operate large numbers of planes at the same time and organise a carrier battle group that includes submarines and support ships.

      “The first landing may be a milestone, but it’s just the beginning,” said Toshi Yoshihara, professor of Asia-Pacific studies at the US Naval War College in Rhode Island. “How the Chinese will handle aircraft losses, which are inevitable, is a better indicator of Beijing’s determination to become a carrier.”


      • #4
        PLAN Task Force Soon To Be Underway

        It appears my buddy over in Jiangsu will have his 1:200 task force operational much faster than the PLAN will up in Dalian.

        I do have to say that is one ugly ass piece of furniture in the background! Looks like the designer has a thing for Edsels.

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        • #5
          Chinese police plan to board ships in disputed seas

          Well this latest news should make life a bit more interesting here.


          • #6
            I have asked you before but I never read a reply. How did you wind up in China?


            • #7
              Took a wrong turn somewhere back in 1990, came down with a bad case of yellow fever while in Hong Kong & haven't looked back.


              • #8
                Rut Roh!

                India has declared itself ready to deploy naval vessels to the South China Sea to protect its oil-exploration interests there, a potential new escalation of tensions in a disputed area where fears of armed conflict have been growing steadily.

                India's naval chief made the statement on Monday just as Vietnam's state oil and gas company, Petrovietnam, accused Chinese boats of sabotaging an exploration operation by cutting a seismic cable being towed behind a Vietnamese vessel.

                Petrovietnam said the seismic vessel, Binh Minh 02, had been operating outside the Gulf of Tonkin when the cable was severed on Friday. It had earlier been surveying the Nam Con Son basin further south -- an area where Indian state-run explorer Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) has a stake in a Vietnamese gas field.


                • #9
                  Things aren't looking too good right now.

                  Reports in that the flagship of the PLAN's northern fleet was seen deploying from it's home port. The Titanic

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by herrmill View Post
                    Things aren't looking too good right now.

                    Reports in that the flagship of the PLAN's northern fleet was seen deploying from it's home port. The Titanic

                    I can just make out Steve McQueen on the main deck.
                    Resident Luddite


                    • #11
                      I wish someone had done a kit of the USS San Pablo.


                      • #12
                        Philippines takes China to intl court over S. China sea

                        Hey Dave, better get your seabag packed! Those old tin cans the Philippine Navy have aren't gonna be much of a match for the Chinese southern fleet once Beijing snubs their nose at this silly lawsuit.

                        Philippines takes China to intl court over S. China sea

                        Published: 22 January, 2013, 12:25

                        The Philippines will sue China over its claim on disputed territory in the South China Sea. This is the first legal case over land to be launched against the Asian powerhouse, despite a number of current territorial rows with neighbors.

                        The Philippines Foreign Minister Albert del Rosario announced his government’s legal challenge to the press on Tuesday, summoning the Chinese ambassador in Manila.

                        "The Philippines has exhausted almost all political and diplomatic avenues for a peaceful negotiated settlement of its maritime dispute with China… we hope that the arbitral proceedings shall bring this dispute to a durable solution," he told a news conference.

                        The Philippines with take Beijing to an arbitration tribunal under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, signed by both countries in 1982.

                        The dispute focuses on a selection of islands in the South China Sea called the Scarborough Shoal, known as Huangyan Island to the Chinese.

                        Tensions reached boiling point last year when the Philippines was forced to withdraw its ships from the area in June.

                        Del Rosario stated Beijing had "interfered with the lawful exercise by the Philippines of its rights within its legitimate maritime zones.”

                        Chinese territorial claims in the area extend into territory to which Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam and Taiwan also lay claim.

                        Both the Philippines and Vietnam have denounced China’s “Nine-dash line,” which encompasses a swathe of the South China Sea, as illegal under UNCLOS.

                        China’s territorial disputes with its Asian neighbors hit the headlines earlier this year when a row with Japan over a group of islands in the East
                        China Sea sparked mass protests in both countries. The Senkaku Islands, or the Diaoyus, as they are known to the Chinese, are uninhabited but the sea around them is believed to hold rich fuel deposits.

                        Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton incurred Beijing’s wrath at a press conference when she said America acknowledges Japanese administrative control of the islands and would oppose “any unilateral action that would seek to undermine” its administration.

                        Beijing slammed Clinton’s words, claiming the US had confused right and wrong and warned such a stance was not conducive to stability in the region.

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                        • #13
                          Yikes! You've done it now: Ellie's ****ed. And thank you so much for making my day a living hell, pal!
                          Resident Luddite


                          • #14
                            You should have no worries. Am sure Redboat219 will be covering you once your wave hits the beachhead.

                            BTW, you'll both want to check out this article bout Beijing's depth of spreading patriotic fever among the gaming community. That screenshot below looks a hellava lot like a disputed group of islands somewhere off the Philippines in the South China Sea.


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                            • #15
                              China frigate locked radar on Japan navy

                              There is no way in hell that a PLAN vessel's commander would authorize such a move without direct orders from above which makes this latest incident even more disturbing.

                              China frigate locked radar on Japan navy: minister

                              By Hiroshi Hiyama (AFP) – 5 Feb 2013

                              TOKYO — A Chinese military frigate locked weapons-targeting radar on a Japanese navy vessel, Tokyo's defence minister said Tuesday, in an apparent upping of the stakes in a bitter territorial row.

                              The move, described by the minister and a Japanese analyst as "dangerous", marks the first time the two nation's navies have locked horns in a dispute that has some commentators warning about a possible armed conflict.

                              "On January 30, something like fire-control radar was directed at a Japan Self-Defense Maritime escort ship in the East China Sea," Itsunori Onodera told reporters in Tokyo.

                              "The defence ministry today confirmed radar for targeting was used."

                              Onodera said a Japanese military helicopter was also locked with a similar radar on January 19. He did not specify whether the helicopter was airborne or on the deck of a ship at the time.

                              Officials said on both occasions the targeting had lasted "minutes".

                              "Directing such radar is very abnormal," he said. "We recognise it could create a very dangerous situation if a single misstep occurred.
                              "We will seek the Chinese side's self-restraint from taking such dangerous action."