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Thread: China threatens U.S. Congress for crossing its ‘red line’ on Taiwan

  1. #181
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Its been clarified that the US doesn't take any position on these disputes otherwise they'd be embroiled in them all over the globe. Point is countries in the region see no alternative to Chinese assertions here. This policy of what is Chinese territory is theirs and what is some one else's territory is negotiable.

    Vietnam has stood up to China back in 2014 and the Chinese backed away with their rig.

    I'm just surprised to see this particular concession being made. Its out of character unless there is more going on in the background. Like they cut a deal or something
    Last edited by Double Edge; 17 Apr 18, at 23:57.

  2. #182
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Informative summary on the Spratlys. I'm not sure I agree with his concluding remarks though. That is China will replicate its aggressive behaviour in the Maldives and by extension the Indian ocean like they have in the South China sea. He advocates India should prevent China from doing any island reclamation in the Maldives. The long and short of it is no Chinese naval bases in the Maldives

    Last edited by Double Edge; 18 Apr 18, at 17:07.

  3. #183
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Articulating what the quad has to do

    The New Great Game: China And The Intense Maritime Contest In Indo-Pacific Region | Swarajya | Apr 09 2018

    The Chinese challenge to the maritime architecture comes in the form of reclamation of islands and features, and in many cases artificially rebuilding them. This activity has so far been in the South China Sea, though there are emerging reports that suggest that China could build artificial islands near the Maldives as well. Beijing has gone on to instal weapons systems and build runways to land military aircraft in some of them. Recall that these militarised islands are in a sea that sees $3.4 trillion of global trade pass through ever year. Coupled with an “active defence strategy” by which Beijing seeks control over the South China Sea as well as the ability to push foreign navies out of the region if there is a need for that, it is effectively creating an exclusive sphere of influence in that part of the western Pacific. Beijing’s South China Sea strategy is — as American strategist Robert Kaplan is fond of reminding — similar to how the United States sought to control the greater Caribbean through the Monroe Doctrine, first enunciated in 1823.

    The Rebirth Of The Quad

    The Indo-Pacific is explicitly about norms of freedom, openness and prosperity. Nevertheless, talking up norms and values alone has limited utility. Upholding and promoting norms have to have a hard concrete edge, backed by economic and military muscle that rewards states that adhere to them and punish ones that do not. Going forward, the quadrilateral grouping of the US, Japan, Australia and India — reborn after a 10-year hiatus — could be the vehicle that sustains the normative Indo-Pacific in two concrete ways.

    One, it could offer alternatives to China’s “debt diplomacy” (to use a phrase of Indian strategist Brahma Chellaney). Two, it could clearly signal to Beijing militarily that the quad states will not tolerate Chinese hegemony over the Indo-Pacific maritime commons. As of now, the first proposal is gaining traction though it is unavoidable — given China’s own muscle flexing in the region — that the second will become part of the agenda at some point in the future.

    The political-military agenda of the quad remains nascent at this stage. However, dissuasion, deterrence and defence (the “3Ds”) in face of Chinese intransigence should be key objectives for the quadrilateral. The four countries should dissuade China from pursuing its active defence strategy. They should deter China from trying to meet its strategic objectives by cleverly avoiding crossing the threshold for a shooting war. Finally, the quad should defend sea lines of communication in the event that dissuasion and deterrence fail.

    These objectives can be achieved by the four countries through the development of shared logistics networks, interoperability between the four navies, and shared intelligence-surveillance-reconnaissance and anti-submarine warfare capabilities. The quad in its military avatar should meet the 3D ends by means of joint exercises and defence diplomacy, patrolling and presence operations, and freedom of navigation and overflight maintenance. It goes without saying that many political differences between the four states have to be ironed out before this strategy can be put in place, including India’s obsession with “strategic autonomy” (whatever that means in practice). That said, for the quad to have any real teeth, a robust military component is a necessity.

    A Three-Dimensional Battlespace

    What is the future of the Indo-Pacific, given China’s revisionism and the attendant pushback from liberal democracies of the region, quad or no quad? To understand this, it is best to conceive of the ongoing tussle in terms of a three-dimensional chessboard (to modify a well-known metaphor of the American scholar-practitioner Joseph Nye). In three-dimensional chess, all the layers are related to one another. In a similar game that is expected to unfold in the Indo-Pacific between China and democratic powers unwilling to cede to Beijing’s hegemony, the geopolitical layer will be linked to the geoeconomic layer. These layers, in turn, would be linked to — using a notion from global strategist Parag Khanna — a third “geotechnological” layer.

    I conclude this essay with a few remarks on what that means.

    That technology and statecraft are intimately linked is an old and somewhat obvious idea: countries that possess superior technology often — though not always — tend to have, ceteris paribus, decisive advantage over their peers. But, possession of superior technology is also a good marker of a nation’s comprehensive national strength, the possession of a vibrant and innovative economy included.

    For a long time, China’s indigenous technical base was weak as it relied on stolen technology from the West. All that has dramatically changed in recent years, as the Chinese economy has moved away from a manufacturing-for-exports model to one based on services and innovation. China also makes no permanent distinction between civilian and military use of technology, as it has moved to what it calls “civil-military fusion”. Xi, in January 2017, created a new Central Commission for Integrated Military and Civilian Development, which is tasked with synthesising civilian and military research efforts and spin-offs from the former for the latter. Through civil-military fusion efforts, China has made spectacular strides in national security-related applications of artificial intelligence and quantum technology.

    While the US does not have a similar state-structured model to interface civilian and military technology, its military-industrial complex has long worked to bridge the gap between the two. Indeed, the US’ “third offset” defence strategy relies heavily of cyber, artificial intelligence and other cutting-edge technologies long considered the monopoly of the Silicon Valley. Australia and Japan too are technology hubs, and Indian technical expertise is well-known. So, the new Asian battlespace will be as much about traditional geopolitical outmanoeuvring and geoeconomic jostling as it will be about technical competition as each side tries to obtain a decisive advantage over the other.

    This interrelated dynamics of geopolitics, geoeconomics and geotechnology will ultimately determine the future of Asia. In other words, along with a commercial maritime Indo-Pacific shaped by new connectivity models and a geopolitical Indo-Pacific that would see intense naval competition, there would be an ethereal Indo-Pacific of disruptive technological ideas and a multiverse of norms that shape the use of technology. One suspects that at the end of the day, it is the latter that would determine the trajectory of the former two.
    Last edited by Double Edge; 19 Apr 18, at 14:53.

  4. #184
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    Abc austraila aka HYPE R US

    China 'deploys missiles' in South China Sea, US, Australia warn of consequences | ABC Oz | May 04 2018

    Foreign Minister Julie Bishop has warned Beijing against militarising the South China Sea following reports that China has installed missile systems in the Spratly Islands for the first time.

    Ms Bishop would not say if the Australian Government had intelligence confirming that — but said if the reports were accurate, then the Government would be worried.

    "If the media reports are accurate then the Australian Government would be concerned because this would be contrary to China's stated aspiration that it would not militarise these features," Ms Bishop said.
    The United States has also warned China that militarising the sea will have consequences.

    "We've raised concerns directly with the Chinese about this and there will be near-term and long-term consequences."

    Ms Huckabee Sanders did not say what the consequences might be.
    A US official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said US intelligence had seen some signs that China had moved some weapons systems to the Spratly Islands in the past month or so, but offered no details.

    CNBC quoted unnamed sources as saying that according to US intelligence assessments, the missiles were moved to Fiery Cross Reef, Subi Reef and Mischief Reef in the Spratly Islands within the past 30 days.

    They would be the first Chinese missile deployments in the Spratlys, where several Asian countries including Vietnam and Taiwan have rival claims.
    China's foreign ministry said it has irrefutable sovereignty over the Spratlys and that necessary defensive deployments were for national security needs and not aimed at any country.

    "Those who do not intend to be aggressive have no need to be worried or scared," Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said.

    China's defence ministry did not respond to a request for comment.

    CNBC said the YJ-12B anti-ship cruise missiles allowed China to strike vessels within 295 nautical miles.

    It said the HQ-9B long-range, surface-to-air missiles could target aircraft, drones and cruise missiles within 160 nautical miles.
    Condition of anyonymity
    Unamed sources
    No details
    Refused to comment
    Last edited by Double Edge; 05 May 18, at 22:37.

  5. #185
    Turbanator Senior Contributor Double Edge's Avatar
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    China was disinivted from the 2018 RIMPAC exercise, maybe because of activities relating to the previous post. Militarisation of artificial features. In direct violation to what Xi said at the rose garden in 2015 ie China would not militarise those features.

    Mattis described China’s recent deployments of antiship and surface-to-air missiles, electronic jamming systems, and the landing of bomber aircraft on Woody Island as moves that are “tied directly to military use for the purposes of intimidation and coercion.” He noted that the United States’ disinvitation of China from the 2018 Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise was a consequence of these moves, and he further elaborated in response to a question that there would be more consequences for China if it continued down this path.

    Mattis called out China’s “militarization of artificial features” in the South China Sea, in direct violation of President Xi Jinping’s assurances to President Barack Obama in the White House Rose Garden in 2015 that China would not militarize these outposts.
    Secdef at Shangrila, Singapore

    https://www.csis.org/analysis/indo-p...age-shangri-la
    Last edited by Double Edge; 10 Jun 18, at 00:51.

  6. #186
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    Schmucks...

    As Beijing lifts PLA budget, Taiwan spends less on defense
    Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen was elected on a pledge to increase military spending, but has fallen short of her promise
    By Asia Times staff July 20, 2018 7:16 PM (UTC+8)

    Two years into Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen’s tenure, the island’s military is still operating on a shoe-string budget, in the face of more menacing from Beijing.

    Figures from Taiwan’s defense ministry reveal the defense budget over the past two years averaged 1.84% of the island’s gross domestic product, falling short of Tsai’s campaign pledge to increase the share of military spending in Taiwan’s economic output to no less than 3%.

    The average defense spending over the past two years represents a decline from 2.54% of GDP in 2008.

    The defense budget this year is NT$327.8 billion (US$10.73 billion), of which almost half of the outlay, or NT$153.9 billion, will be set aside for pension and personnel expenditures, according to the ministry’s report to the island’s Legislative Yuan.

    Had Tsai’s campaign promise been fulfilled, the defense budget this year would be NT$535 billion, according to Taiwan’s Central News Agency.

    Across the strait on the mainland, Beijing’s national defense budget this year is set to break the 1.1 trillion yuan (US$175 billion) mark, up 8.1%, or almost 17 times Taiwan’s. That figure is on the conservative side given the fact that Beijing’s military outlays are often camouflaged as something else, like infrastructure, industrial, research and development investment, among other things.

    The People’s Liberation Army’s 2017 budget – about 1 trillion yuan – was equivalent to 1.5% of its GDP that year.

    Xinhua said in a commentary in March that China’s defense spending compared to its GDP showed Beijing’s “magnanimity” in its dealings with other nations, plus its commitment to “non-hegemonic, peaceful development” and love of peace.

    Still, China has long outspent Russia, India, France, Japan, Germany and others and was second only to the US on a 2016 list of military expenditure compiled by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

    In Taiwan, according to analysts, excluding any additional procurement of arms from the US, Taiwan’s military spending is unlikely to reach the 3% goal before the end of Tsai’s four-year tenure, given the island’s flagging economy, revenue shortfalls and the opposition’s efforts to scale down the defense budget during parliamentary deliberations, led by the Beijing-friendly KMT party.

    Previously the military had hoped for an increase in the defense budget to NT$360 billion in 2019, or 2% of GDP.

    Still, Tsai has vowed to progressively raise defense spending by 2 or 3 percentage points annually from 2019 onwards and assured disgruntled soldiers and veterans that more spending on training and weapon purchases – such as the M1A2 Abrams main battle tanks, an indigenous fast attack missile boat program and a new mobile surface-to-air missile system – would not eat into their pensions and benefits.

    http://www.atimes.com/article/as-bei...ss-on-defense/
    Looks like the best case is that increase manages to just maintain defense spending at 1.8% now.

  7. #187
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    i'd be curious what type of capability Taiwan might have if in some dream world they raised it to 5%. IE, in terms of acquistions, a lot of this is limited by what other people are willing to sell Taiwan.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

  8. #188
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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    i'd be curious what type of capability Taiwan might have if in some dream world they raised it to 5%. IE, in terms of acquistions, a lot of this is limited by what other people are willing to sell Taiwan.
    It would be pointless. Without the US actively supporting Taiwan in a war, they couldn't hope to survive anyway. So either the US is onboard, and Taiwan's defense spending doesn't particularly matter, or the US isn't on board, and Taiwan's defense spending doesn't particularly matter.

  9. #189
    Senior Contributor DOR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    i'd be curious what type of capability Taiwan might have if in some dream world they raised it to 5%. IE, in terms of acquistions, a lot of this is limited by what other people are willing to sell Taiwan.
    Much of what I've seen on Taiwan's military capability is along the lines of "lousy command and control, intel and counter-intel and warfighting experience. Good motivation, except when it comes to budgeting."
    Trust me?
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  10. #190
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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    i'd be curious what type of capability Taiwan might have if in some dream world they raised it to 5%. IE, in terms of acquistions, a lot of this is limited by what other people are willing to sell Taiwan.
    I think that might, just might, pay for the 8 eight submarines, 4 DDGs and 15 AAW frigate naval plan (they claim they can build all that for $15 billion, but $25 billion is a much more realistic estimate).

    And then a new domestic fighter (somewhere in the Saab Gripen NG class IIRC), and 500 M1A2 Abrams (and the IFVs too).

    Note that a lot of that stuff is of questionable utility to Taiwan in 2030.

    Though that might require more than 5% of GDP just for that (since personnel costs alone will probably eat at least half of that budget).

  11. #191
    Senior Contributor Oracle's Avatar
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  12. #192
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    It would be pointless. Without the US actively supporting Taiwan in a war, they couldn't hope to survive anyway. So either the US is onboard, and Taiwan's defense spending doesn't particularly matter, or the US isn't on board, and Taiwan's defense spending doesn't particularly matter.
    just saw this now. actually, it's a huge difference.

    even if the US was inclined to intervene, Taiwan would need to survive the span between the start of the invasion and the US political decision to intervene as well as the logistic timelines of the US putting together a force capable of penetrating PRC A2/AD and decisively breaking the invasion.

    and within that context, also another huge level of difference if the US intervention happens when the PLA is trying to break out of beach-heads or if the PLA has already seized Taipei.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

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    Eric,

    You have any new info about PLA sealift capabilities? A quick google shows that the PLA actually went down in sealift. From what I saw, they're still limited to a division size landing force. I'm not holding my breath for a beachhead.

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    Eric,

    You have any new info about PLA sealift capabilities? A quick google shows that the PLA actually went down in sealift. From what I saw, they're still limited to a division size landing force. I'm not holding my breath for a beachhead.
    think the latest unclas info is that the Chinese can now land a little bit over two divisions' worth on the initial landing and about a division's worth per day after that, although that's probably optimistic.

    so they're still on the "paralysis followed by morale collapse" method, with prospects of that at least somewhat more realistic than where it was bout 10 years ago-- mainly because of expected PLAAF air superiority.
    There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there has always been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through our political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that democracy means that "My ignorance is just as good as your knowledge."- Isaac Asimov

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    Quote Originally Posted by astralis View Post
    just saw this now. actually, it's a huge difference.

    even if the US was inclined to intervene, Taiwan would need to survive the span between the start of the invasion and the US political decision to intervene as well as the logistic timelines of the US putting together a force capable of penetrating PRC A2/AD and decisively breaking the invasion.

    and within that context, also another huge level of difference if the US intervention happens when the PLA is trying to break out of beach-heads or if the PLA has already seized Taipei.
    It'd matter a lot more if they actually spent their money smartly.

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