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02/29/2016

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Jeff Gauch

"They understand, as we should, that war in the Western Pacific will look very much like war in the Western Pacific. And they are planning accordingly."

No, they're not. War in the Western Pacific means that fixed strong points will either be destroyed, captured, or bypassed by the more mobile power. Is there anything on these Hendersons that cannot be completely destroyed by a volley from a Virgina's VLS tubes? The resources being expended now, especially given China's economic problems, would be better spent producing submarines and missile ships to strengthen their fleet

Krag

Thoroughly depressing read, but you make excellent points at the end. Good stuff.

Jjak

"Stationing weak, inadequate forces far from defended bases, or in bases subject to powerful enemy attack, carries tremendous risk."

Don't know if this still holds true but... http://thediplomat.com/2015/02/4-us-littoral-combat-ships-to-operate-out-of-singapore-by-2018/

As for China's new little bases, they are less wartime operating locations and more frontier/border forts to stage aggressive presence and harassment patrols. Once their string of pearls is built they'll basically say possession is 9/10 of the law and bet (probably correctly) the US won't eject them. Since their neighbors don't have the power to kick them off, they believe they will have won without actually fighting.

ultimaratioregis

@Jeff

Here's betting those "fixed strong points" serve their purposes very well at the outset of hostilities. And if they are instrumental in the finding and sinking of a couple SSNs or damaging/destroying a CVN, they will be worth the cost ten times over.

NaCly Dog

Are the Chinese installing the SCS equivalent of SOSUS?

That would make the SCS sporting for SSNs and SSGNs.

ultimaratioregis

@NaClyDog,

That's the rumor. With supporting bases for ASW so that there will be complete coverage by MPRA platforms.

Tennessee Budd

Excellent post, but one thing bothers me:
" The Japanese had decimated US air forces in the Philippines"...
I'd have to look it up, but can it be true that the Japanese only managed to knock out 10% of US airpower in the Philippines? I was always led to believe that they'd pretty much wiped it out.

ultimaratioregis

@Tennessee Budd,

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Decimation. Got it. Mister literal!

Kidding aside, an excellent book on the topic is "Fortnight of Infamy", about the destruction of Allied air power in the two weeks following Pearl Harbor. Frustrating read, but informative.

SCOTTtheBADGER

The Cool Kids don't want to acknowledge, nor confront aggression, as that would show their worldview to be incorrect.

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