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(CNN)   U.S. Bases in the Pacific vulnerable to a bolt-from-the-blue military attack. This is not a repeat from 71 years ago   (globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com) divider line 146
    More: Scary, U.S. Naval War College, forward operating base, People's Liberation Army, aircraft carriers, P L A, USS George Washington, Imperial Japan, combat operations  
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9309 clicks; posted to Main » on 07 Dec 2012 at 12:30 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2012-12-07 03:32:06 PM
means and opportunity, yes.

THEY HAVE NO MOTIVE TO ATTACK US. We are their largest trading partner. They hold a few trillion of our debt. It would make less than no sense for China to launch a pre-emptive attack.

This is just more fear-mongering so we keep spending a third of our money on the military instead of investing in infrastructure and education like we should be doing.
 
xcv
2012-12-07 03:35:27 PM

funmonger: Apik0r0s: Not at ALL what I said. Read it again. Attacking Russia would be monumentally stupid of China, there's some ugly history there that doesn't need to be re-visited.

As opposed to the uglier history of China fighting the US. Oh, sorry... the UN.

Your theory still doesn't make sense, no matter how many times I read it. You said China needs Oil... so, um, how will grabbing the Spratlys give them that Oil?

Attacking Russia makes the most sense if China needs oil so badly that it's willing to fight for it. Attacking the US is suicide and you know it.


They don't need to attack Russia. They're already colonizing Siberia according to Moscow; Chinese are moving in large numbers across the border and dominating the economic sector.

'One feature of the Russian-Chinese relationship seemed especially telling: Cross-border marriages are overwhelmingly between Chinese men and Russian women. Much of this has to do with demographics-Russia has a surplus of women, while China has too many men. But as one Russian woman told me, "Chinese men are kinder and more attentive to their wives. And they usually have more money."'

http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/dispatches/features/ 20 09/where_russia_meets_china/why_are_siberian_russians_drawn_to_china.h tml
 
2012-12-07 03:38:53 PM

Moopy Mac: funmonger: Apik0r0s: Not at ALL what I said. Read it again. Attacking Russia would be monumentally stupid of China, there's some ugly history there that doesn't need to be re-visited.

As opposed to the uglier history of China fighting the US. Oh, sorry... the UN.

Your theory still doesn't make sense, no matter how many times I read it. You said China needs Oil... so, um, how will grabbing the Spratlys give them that Oil?

Attacking Russia makes the most sense if China needs oil so badly that it's willing to fight for it. Attacking the US is suicide and you know it.

The better question is why attack anyone to get oil in this day and age? In the 1930s and 40s it made some sense as the international trade in energy hadn't really begun in earnest, so you needed to control the source itself. Now it would seem easier and cheaper to just buy energy on the open market.


The international energy trade began in earnest in the late 19th century. The big corporations freely traded around the world much like they do now, the only thing different is the profit split between production companies and host nations. In the example of Japan, which had no production, they required American oil companies to maintain a 6 month inventory of supplies in order to be allowed to trade in the country, such supplies supplementing the emergency oil they purchased during the leadup to the embargo. Western companies, while they didn't like it, were too worried that their competitors would gain the market share and were thus willing to invest in the inventory.

funmonger: Apik0r0s: Same motive Japan had.

Oil.

Why the fark would they attack the US for oil? Makes more sense to attack Russia. They're weaker than the US, they're right next door, and they have plenty of oil. Hell, attacking Canada for oil makes far more sense than attacking the US.


I take it you don't know where most Russian oil is? The early cold war pissing match over Iran in 1946 was precisely about buffer zones for Russia's oil holdings, and an attempt to get at the British holdings in Iran. To my knowledge, they haven't found much oil at all near the border with China.

And, the Chinese don't need to attack us for our oil, that would be silly. They simply need to do the same thing the Japanese did, attempt to take the oil rich islands of south east asia and hope they can wield them to the Chinese economy in the face of American naval opposition. The Japanese tried and failed, mainly because they had a similar sense of racial superiority as the modern Chinese, and felt that the United States was too soft to spend the blood and treasure we needed to dislodge them from their new empire. I'm personally on the fence whether or not the Chinese will make a similar gamble, but to say that they won't ignores the historical precedent of a power much weaker than they are today who tried that same thing.

Or, they could just be smart about it and negotiate for some oil concessions of their own. Surely they could use some of those massive foreign currency reserves to bribe some third world dictators like the western multinationals have done.

ha-ha-guy: signaljammer: There was no embargo against Japan in July of 1941.

That's precisely when it started.

Well that and all our aid to the KMT, who Japan was at war with. We'd been supporting Chiang Kai-shek to varying degrees for a long time. Declaring war on us, France and the UK in theory gave Japan a chance to cut off Chinese supplies (American shipping, the Burma Road, and French Indochina).


That was one of the conditions of the Japanese ultimatum that Cordell Hull rejected in November. One, they wanted us to sell them oil again, and two, they wanted us to stop giving aid to the Guomindang. Hull wasn't taking that shiat, and FDR welcomed the opening of the back door that he discussed with Churchill.
 
2012-12-07 03:39:57 PM

xcv: But as one Russian woman told me, "Chinese men are kinder and more attentive to their wives. And they usually have more money."'


Given the Confucian values of many Chinese men and how that impacts their treatment of women, I am forced to conclude that Russians are absolutely atrocious husbands.
 
2012-12-07 03:41:21 PM

udhq: There was a time when prosperity could be achieved via military conquest. That time has passed.

China and the US are never going to go to war because our economies are so intertwined, that it would be a Great Depression-level disaster for both. The same could be said for nearly any developed economies in the world.

And yes, this is a good thing.



Brought to you by the same naiveté that brought you The War To End All Wars.
 
2012-12-07 03:51:00 PM

udhq: There was a time when prosperity could be achieved via military conquest. That time has passed.

China and the US are never going to go to war because our economies are so intertwined, that it would be a Great Depression-level disaster for both. The same could be said for nearly any developed economies in the world.

And yes, this is a good thing.


We all know that the economies of Europe have never been intertwined, Oh, sure, they sold and bought things from each other all the time but that does not mean that they were intertwined. They were co-dependent economically, but that is all.

Japan very much depended on the USA, the British and the Dutch to keep their country running. At some point, the Japanese decided that it was more important to take over than to purchase.

Not now, but at some point it could become very likely that China would feel the same way.
 
2012-12-07 03:58:27 PM

Moopy Mac: The better question is why attack anyone to get oil in this day and age? In the 1930s and 40s it made some sense as the international trade in energy hadn't really begun in earnest, so you needed to control the source itself. Now it would seem easier and cheaper to just buy energy on the open market.



Except that the open market is only open to you until closed by this:

upload.wikimedia.org

Which is exactly what happened to China and France under Little Bush. America's long term security centers on the control of fossil fuels.
 
2012-12-07 03:59:54 PM

chuckufarlie: udhq: There was a time when prosperity could be achieved via military conquest. That time has passed.

China and the US are never going to go to war because our economies are so intertwined, that it would be a Great Depression-level disaster for both. The same could be said for nearly any developed economies in the world.

And yes, this is a good thing.

We all know that the economies of Europe have never been intertwined, Oh, sure, they sold and bought things from each other all the time but that does not mean that they were intertwined. They were co-dependent economically, but that is all.

Japan very much depended on the USA, the British and the Dutch to keep their country running. At some point, the Japanese decided that it was more important to take over than to purchase.

Not now, but at some point it could become very likely that China would feel the same way.


I don't see anything in the next century changing enough that China would even consider wanting to take on the NATO alliance. No, not happening.
 
2012-12-07 04:11:44 PM

xcv: 'One feature of the Russian-Chinese relationship seemed especially telling: Cross-border marriages are overwhelmingly between Chinese men and Russian women. Much of this has to do with demographics-Russia has a surplus of women, while China has too many men. But as one Russian woman told me, "Chinese men are kinder and more attentive to their wives. And they usually have more money."'


Now THAT's a strategy.
 
2012-12-07 04:17:09 PM
Everyone saying "China would never attack us", please recall that China is a) run by people, and, b) people do stupid stuff.

Also, we're talking about a nation that, in my lifetime, chucked it's OWN people into concentration camps.

Rationality is all well and good, but it's not always in the driver's seat...
 
2012-12-07 04:17:42 PM

funmonger: Apik0r0s: Same motive Japan had.

Oil.

Why the fark would they attack the US for oil? Makes more sense to attack Russia. They're weaker than the US, they're right next door, and they have plenty of oil. Hell, attacking Canada for oil makes far more sense than attacking the US.


I remember playing that game a few years ago:

upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-12-07 04:23:35 PM
Don't you miss the good old days when we were supposed to be afraid of Iran?
 
2012-12-07 04:23:43 PM

SquiggsIN: I don't see anything in the next century changing enough that China would even consider wanting to take on the NATO alliance. No, not happening.



The math wasn't there for Japan either. Germany wasn't ready at the outbreak of WWI and they knew it. Weird shiat happens, the USA once went to war over a pig and a potato.

I don't see a sneak attack scenario in this. More a slow burn centered around these islands.

With enough anti-ship capability China could easily make it too costly for us to get involved.
 
2012-12-07 04:25:47 PM

Syphilis_Smile: I take it you don't know where most Russian oil is? The early cold war pissing match over Iran in 1946 was precisely about buffer zones for Russia's oil holdings, and an attempt to get at the British holdings in Iran. To my knowledge, they haven't found much oil at all near the border with China.


I have no idea where the oil is. I know Russia has some, more than China does, and attacking the US - as TFA purports to be a possibility - is suicidal when compared to attacking Russia. I'm not saying that fighting the Russians would be easy... but who would YOU rather fight for oil? US or Russia? This is my sole point, all logistics other than proximity aside.

And, the Chinese don't need to attack us for our oil, that would be silly. They simply need to do the same thing the Japanese did, attempt to take the oil rich islands of south east asia and hope they can wield them to the Chinese economy in the face of American naval opposition. The Japanese tried and failed, mainly because they had a similar sense of racial superiority as the modern Chinese, and felt that the United States was too soft to spend the blood and treasure we needed to dislodge them from their new empire. I'm personally on the fence whether or not the Chinese will make a similar gamble, but to say that they won't ignores the historical precedent of a power much weaker than they are today who tried that same thing.

I'm pretty sure the bold above means Attacking America.

By the way, the Japanese didn't fail due to a perceived sense of racial superiority. Tactical blunders (Pearl Harbor, Going all-Naval in the Pac Rim rather than all-army in Manchuria) and bad luck (Midway) did that just fine.

The Chinese aren't going to gamble jack. They have waaaay more to lose attacking America, and not just from America. India would love to crush a weakened China, as might Russia. It would be a repeat of the days of the Dowager Empress if China tried any such tomfoolery, and they know that better than we do.

Or, they could just be smart about it and negotiate for some oil concessions of their own. Surely they could use some of those massive foreign currency reserves to bribe some third world dictators like the western multinationals have done.

EXACTLY.

Which means all this Bolt-From-The-Blue talk is garbage.
 
2012-12-07 04:28:59 PM

Apik0r0s: udhq: There was a time when prosperity could be achieved via military conquest. That time has passed.

China and the US are never going to go to war because our economies are so intertwined, that it would be a Great Depression-level disaster for both. The same could be said for nearly any developed economies in the world.

And yes, this is a good thing.


Brought to you by the same naiveté that brought you The War To End All Wars.


Right, because that quote had zippidy-fark to do with how economic globalization makes it damn near impossible for superpowers to disentangle.

I'm sorry, and I don't at all mean to be rude by saying this, but I can't imagine a 1 sentence comment on this subject that could possibly telegraph a deeper ignorance than you just demonstrated.
 
2012-12-07 04:29:09 PM

PunGent: Everyone saying "China would never attack us", please recall that China is a) run by people, and, b) people do stupid stuff.

Also, we're talking about a nation that, in my lifetime, chucked it's OWN people into concentration camps.

Rationality is all well and good, but it's not always in the driver's seat...


China isn't suicidal, as a nation. They simply will not attack a nation that can crush them. Christ, they couldn't even invade Viet Nam properly!

They won't attack America. Humans aren't as stupid as you think.
 
2012-12-07 04:29:30 PM

PunGent: Everyone saying "China would never attack us", please recall that China is a) run by people, and, b) people do stupid stuff.

Also, we're talking about a nation that, in my lifetime, chucked it's OWN people into concentration camps.

Rationality is all well and good, but it's not always in the driver's seat...


Not to mention the brutal suppression of people who only wanted what we generally take for granted.

They still execute people for purely economic crimes like smuggling.
 
2012-12-07 04:33:44 PM

dittybopper: PunGent: Everyone saying "China would never attack us", please recall that China is a) run by people, and, b) people do stupid stuff.

Also, we're talking about a nation that, in my lifetime, chucked it's OWN people into concentration camps.

Rationality is all well and good, but it's not always in the driver's seat...

Not to mention the brutal suppression of people who only wanted what we generally take for granted.

They still execute people for purely economic crimes like smuggling.


None of this suggests that the ChiComs are stupid enough to attack the Unite States.
 
2012-12-07 04:35:46 PM
Any war that diminishes Chinese defensive capacity will not be undertaken, and a war with the US is exactly that. China would be conquered by India and Russia and the US at the same time.
 
2012-12-07 04:42:13 PM

Apik0r0s: With enough anti-ship capability China could easily make it too costly for us to get involved.


This is a general principle that people often forget: You don't have to be able to *WIN*, you just have to make it expensive enough that the other side won't try it.
 
2012-12-07 04:43:40 PM

funmonger: dittybopper: PunGent: Everyone saying "China would never attack us", please recall that China is a) run by people, and, b) people do stupid stuff.

Also, we're talking about a nation that, in my lifetime, chucked it's OWN people into concentration camps.

Rationality is all well and good, but it's not always in the driver's seat...

Not to mention the brutal suppression of people who only wanted what we generally take for granted.

They still execute people for purely economic crimes like smuggling.

None of this suggests that the ChiComs are stupid enough to attack the Unite States.


Well, there isn't any indication that they would do something stupid in the near future. But what looks stupid today, to us, might not look stupid to the leadership of the PRC in 10 or 20 years time.
 
2012-12-07 04:57:38 PM

dittybopper: Apik0r0s: With enough anti-ship capability China could easily make it too costly for us to get involved.

This is a general principle that people often forget: You don't have to be able to *WIN*, you just have to make it expensive enough that the other side won't try it.


If people forget that, it's because they don't play enough RISK online, lol.

And the other half of the equation is that when laying claim to these islands, you don't have to be right, necessarily, just righteous enough that nobody goes to war on you. A good pretense, good press and a slew of carrier killer missiles to poison the pill and Win. China seems to be pursuing both avenues furiously.

The problem is that history shows schemes like this blowing up and beyond anybody's control.
 
2012-12-07 05:01:03 PM

funmonger: Syphilis_Smile: I take it you don't know where most Russian oil is? The early cold war pissing match over Iran in 1946 was precisely about buffer zones for Russia's oil holdings, and an attempt to get at the British holdings in Iran. To my knowledge, they haven't found much oil at all near the border with China.

I have no idea where the oil is. I know Russia has some, more than China does, and attacking the US - as TFA purports to be a possibility - is suicidal when compared to attacking Russia. I'm not saying that fighting the Russians would be easy... but who would YOU rather fight for oil? US or Russia? This is my sole point, all logistics other than proximity aside.

And, the Chinese don't need to attack us for our oil, that would be silly. They simply need to do the same thing the Japanese did, attempt to take the oil rich islands of south east asia and hope they can wield them to the Chinese economy in the face of American naval opposition. The Japanese tried and failed, mainly because they had a similar sense of racial superiority as the modern Chinese, and felt that the United States was too soft to spend the blood and treasure we needed to dislodge them from their new empire. I'm personally on the fence whether or not the Chinese will make a similar gamble, but to say that they won't ignores the historical precedent of a power much weaker than they are today who tried that same thing.

I'm pretty sure the bold above means Attacking America.

By the way, the Japanese didn't fail due to a perceived sense of racial superiority. Tactical blunders (Pearl Harbor, Going all-Naval in the Pac Rim rather than all-army in Manchuria) and bad luck (Midway) did that just fine.

The Chinese aren't going to gamble jack. They have waaaay more to lose attacking America, and not just from America. India would love to crush a weakened China, as might Russia. It would be a repeat of the days of the Dowager Empress if China tried any such tomfoolery, and they know that better t ...


The Japanese plan was actually to attack the British and the Dutch. However they knew the United States was signing defense treaties with their European friends, so that meant the U.S. fleet would sortie out on Plan Orange with the start of hostilities. To make the best use of their naval forces, therefore, they decided to give up on the original Decisive Battle strategy which called for luring the Amerian fleet across the Pacific, hitting them with fleet subs along the way to reduce their numbers, and then surprising them with a night-time Long Lance attack of the type that was so effective in the waters around Guadalcanal. They instead allowed Yamamoto to take the British lead at Taranto to knock out the U.S. fleet in Pearl Harbor to allow their ships to freely tackle what became known as the ABDA command.

I don't understand your comment on the tactical benefit of Manchuria. There was no oil in Manchuria, and the Japanese efforts to mimic the German Bergius/Fischer Tropsch industrial facilities to make synthetic gasoline from Manchu coal were barely under way in 1941. The Japanese already knew they could not effectively invade the Soviet Union, so what were they going to accomplish? They would have run out of gas long before they reached the Soviet oil fields in present day Azerbaijan.

Hell, the only real tactical blunder in the list you gave was Midway, which you chalk up as bad luck. The other major error was that they neglected anti-submarine warfare because they felt Americans could never endure the discomfort of underwater life. I'd say you should trust me when I say that the Japanese had unrealistic expectations for the way the war would be fought, and denied to the very end that they would lose, due nearly entirely to their sense of racial superiority.
 
2012-12-07 05:02:17 PM

dittybopper: Well, there isn't any indication that they would do something stupid in the near future. But what looks stupid today, to us, might not look stupid to the leadership of the PRC in 10 or 20 years time.


The PRC has more to fear from it's own than it does the US, or any other foreign power for that matter. Much of their own history has been spent fighting themselves for control, and that problem does not seem to be going away for the next 50 years, let alone 10.
 
2012-12-07 05:11:09 PM
How about a blue attack bolt from the military?
upload.wikimedia.org
 
2012-12-07 05:13:20 PM

Syphilis_Smile: I'd say you should trust me when I say that the Japanese had unrealistic expectations for the way the war would be fought, and denied to the very end that they would lose, due nearly entirely to their sense of racial superiority.


I said that I don't think it was thier belief in racial superiority that made them lose. I said it was tactical blunders and bad luck. Pearl harbor counts as a tactical blunder on many levels. 1) no carriers taken out, 2) Attacking America in the 1st place.

Also, I'm pretty sure there was a debate among the Empire's brass on which group got more "stuff", army or navy, and which direction to fight in. I can't nail my source, so I'm not 100% about the full details of that plan. They were only sure that they couldn't invade Russia after a disastrous probing attack, IIRC.

All this gets away from my point, which is that China isn't attacking America anytime soon.
 
2012-12-07 05:21:21 PM

funmonger: Syphilis_Smile: I'd say you should trust me when I say that the Japanese had unrealistic expectations for the way the war would be fought, and denied to the very end that they would lose, due nearly entirely to their sense of racial superiority.

I said that I don't think it was thier belief in racial superiority that made them lose. I said it was tactical blunders and bad luck. Pearl harbor counts as a tactical blunder on many levels. 1) no carriers taken out, 2) Attacking America in the 1st place.

Also, I'm pretty sure there was a debate among the Empire's brass on which group got more "stuff", army or navy, and which direction to fight in. I can't nail my source, so I'm not 100% about the full details of that plan. They were only sure that they couldn't invade Russia after a disastrous probing attack, IIRC.

All this gets away from my point, which is that China isn't attacking America anytime soon.



I would call attacking America in the first place a strategic blunder, not a tactical one.
 
2012-12-07 05:26:44 PM

Apik0r0s: I would call attacking America in the first place a strategic blunder, not a tactical one.


Okay, sure.

China still won't attack America.
 
2012-12-07 05:43:32 PM

Apik0r0s: dittybopper: Apik0r0s: With enough anti-ship capability China could easily make it too costly for us to get involved.

This is a general principle that people often forget: You don't have to be able to *WIN*, you just have to make it expensive enough that the other side won't try it.

If people forget that, it's because they don't play enough RISK online, lol.

And the other half of the equation is that when laying claim to these islands, you don't have to be right, necessarily, just righteous enough that nobody goes to war on you. A good pretense, good press and a slew of carrier killer missiles to poison the pill and Win. China seems to be pursuing both avenues furiously.

The problem is that history shows schemes like this blowing up and beyond anybody's control.


The supply of anti-ship missiles that would be required to deter the U.S. Navy should they want to retake an island DOES NOT EXIST. It's just not possible that they could take and fortify anything faster than we could bomb them back to the forbidden city.
 
2012-12-07 06:01:58 PM
God damn, that article was stupid. Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor had exactly zero elements of bolt-from-the-blue attached to it. The only surprising part was that they sneaked their carriers to Hawaii, instead of attacking only in the Philippines, as expected. We had cut off their oil and given them an ultimatum on China and Indochina; their only choices were to completely knuckle under or attack.

As for his bullshiat analysis of China's motives and capabilities:
1. We are China's largest trade partner. War with the U.S. means economic disaster for them, when they're already teetering on the economic brink because of a real estate bubble..
2. 380 conventionally armed ballistic missiles means 380 1,000-pound bombs aimed vaguely in an area of a few thousand yards.These missiles don't have laser or satellite-guided warheads. Throw ALL of that at Yokusuka, and you're unlikely to cripple that one base. Spread it around and you'll have a negligible result.
3. There are 10 other carrier battle groups aside from the GW, plus an entire nuke sub fleet, that can be supplied from Hawaii, the Philippines and Korea to a) eliminate any Chinese vessel with a gun or missile on it, 2) Shoot down or destroy on the ground the entire (mostly obsolescent) Chinese Air Force. 3) Blow the crap out of any dang thing we feel like on the Asian mainland.

What the fark are they teaching at the Naval War College?
 
2012-12-07 06:07:09 PM

mbillips: What the fark are they teaching at the Naval War College?


That the best way to score more funding is through Fearmongering.
 
2012-12-07 06:08:06 PM

Apik0r0s: Except that the open market is only open to you until closed by this:

upload.wikimedia.org

Which is exactly what happened to China and France under Little Bush. America's long term security centers on the control of fossil fuels.


We are decommissioning more ships than we are building right now. Rmoney made this point during one of the debates and people mocked him for it.

Current fleet: 288

All ships scheduled to be decommissioned in FY 2013 (and only 2013): 11

All ships scheduled to be commissioned during FY 2013-2017: 12

That's a net gain of one ship over the next four years IF (and this ain't gonna happen) no other ships are decommissioned in FY 2014, 2015 or 2016.

There is also the nagging fact that usually only about 40% of the fleet is at sea at any given moment and you can't push that number up a whole lot without running into some very serious logistical problems very quickly.

Ships take a long time to build (3-8 years usually, depending upon the size and complexity). It's not like we can go to the local Warships R Us and pick one off of the showroom floor and get it delivered next week. The fleet is getting smaller and smaller while at the same time we are relying more and more on receiving vital goods (instead of the rest of the world needing what we sell) that we need to survive over the oceans of the world.

Case in point: Right now the Port of Long Beach is on strike costing an estimated 1-1.5 billion a day in trade. That's one port out of literally dozens (of which only one exports more than it imports, and that's food out of New Orleans). Stop shipping us stuff and we would soon be in a very tight spot. Hit the major US naval and air bases in Asia and the Western Pacific while the important ships are in port and you could easily cut the fleet size by a third. That means that ships will have to transit thousands of miles each way just to get to and from their areas of operations which essentially makes it no more than a quarter to a third (out of the ~40% that remain available) that might be able to do anything in the theater of operations at any given moment assuming that they aren't needed somewhere else.

I'm not saying that this is a concern or a reasonable possibility right at this moment however the rest of the world can do math too.
 
2012-12-07 06:13:39 PM

SquiggsIN: The supply of anti-ship missiles that would be required to deter the U.S. Navy should they want to retake an island DOES NOT EXIST.


Not yet, anyways.
 
2012-12-07 06:22:45 PM
Also, they could secretly build an army of transforming robots and sell them to us as cars, televisions, and Ipads. Then one day, BOOM! We're all speaking Mandarin and Mao's face is on Mt. Rushmore.
 
2012-12-07 06:25:09 PM
WE CANNOT AFFORD A CANOE GAP
 
2012-12-07 07:08:10 PM

Radioactive Ass: The fleet is getting smaller and smaller while at the same time we are relying more and more on receiving vital goods (instead of the rest of the world needing what we sell) that we need to survive over the oceans of the world.


It's funny that you see this exclusively as a threat to security. I agree, it does make it dependent on others. But it also makes others dependent on us. Historically interdependency -- on scales from individuals to nations -- tends to tamp down violent interactions because the side effects are harmful to all parties even if the direct damage is completely unilateral.
 
2012-12-07 07:15:07 PM
Also, this isn't Starcraft I. Zerg rushes aren't gonna cut it against modern American tech. Less ships /= weaker navy.
 
2012-12-07 07:20:39 PM

funmonger: PunGent: Everyone saying "China would never attack us", please recall that China is a) run by people, and, b) people do stupid stuff.

Also, we're talking about a nation that, in my lifetime, chucked it's OWN people into concentration camps.

Rationality is all well and good, but it's not always in the driver's seat...

China isn't suicidal, as a nation. They simply will not attack a nation that can crush them. Christ, they couldn't even invade Viet Nam properly!

They won't attack America. Humans aren't as stupid as you think.


To clarify, I don't think it's likely...the article is pretty useless...just that it's not
completely improbable. Most wars throughout history are the result of miscalculations and/or downright stupidity.

Afa Vietnam, you're quite right, they didn't succeed...but the question was whether they'd attack, not whether they'd win.
 
2012-12-07 07:23:13 PM
Uh oh. Looks like somebody at CNN just saw the Red Dawn remake.
 
2012-12-07 07:46:39 PM

profplump: It's funny that you see this exclusively as a threat to security. I agree, it does make it dependent on others. But it also makes others dependent on us. Historically interdependency -- on scales from individuals to nations -- tends to tamp down violent interactions because the side effects are harmful to all parties even if the direct damage is completely unilateral.


The main point behind having a navy is security via keeping open the sea lanes of communication (commerce). There's a reason why the strongest nations in the world, past and present, have always had a strong naval presence.Commerce has always required inter-dependance otherwise it wouldn't exist in the first place.

The concern that I have is not what we have now but what we might have in 10-20 years from now. We can no longer get away with building Liberty type ships in a crisis. Not only don't we not have that capability anymore but with current levels of technology they wouldn't last very long even if we did. It takes a lot of time, money and resources to build the ships of today (like I said 3-8 years, and that's from laying the keel, not from initial authorization which can add anywhere from a year to 3 years on the timeline).

I don't have any expectations that the world in 20 years will look the same as it does now and anyone who does is a fool. What it will look like will then depends entirely on what we do today. The post that I was commenting on was saying that the current US fleet would prevent something from happening in the future and I pointed out that the US fleet is not going to look anywhere near the same in the future based upon current and projected shipbuilding trends.

Currently we have at sea around 116 ships at any given time. That includes not only warships (surface and submarine) that actually project power but the supply ships that they must have to keep them at sea and troop transport type ships that have limited use other than putting boots on the ground (not really useful out in the open ocean and in fact are a liability in that they take ships away from other tasks to protect them).

In 20 years that number will be well below 100 if the current trends continue. That number is well below what we may need in a world that has over 139 million square miles worth of oceans that we rely upon for our survival.

funmonger: Less ships /= weaker navy.


Ships are only useful when they are where you need them when you need them there. They don't just magically appear and life isn't a video game.
 
2012-12-07 10:02:50 PM
This is ridiculous. China is not going to attack because it has far too many vulnerabilities in terms of economy and culture. If they tried to Zerg-rush the South China Sea they'd have to worry about India coming at them from behind. Pakistan and North Korea wouldn't help and Russia has large stake in seeing China getting crushed militarily. Not mention that to lose (even if not that badly) would be political death for the Communist Party. They don't even have the monetary resources as they're busy using those to stave off a collapse of the economy due to the spending of local governments.
 
2012-12-07 10:18:04 PM

ShonenBat: This is ridiculous. China is not going to attack because it has far too many vulnerabilities in terms of economy and culture. If they tried to Zerg-rush the South China Sea they'd have to worry about India coming at them from behind. Pakistan and North Korea wouldn't help and Russia has large stake in seeing China getting crushed militarily. Not mention that to lose (even if not that badly) would be political death for the Communist Party. They don't even have the monetary resources as they're busy using those to stave off a collapse of the economy due to the spending of local governments.


An all-out attack IS unlikely. They're probably posturing to improve their position vis a vis the Spratleys.

But the thing about about saber-rattling is that events can escalate beyond either side's ability to control them.

Look at the start of the German west front in WW1, for example.
 
2012-12-07 10:33:04 PM

PunGent: ShonenBat: This is ridiculous. China is not going to attack because it has far too many vulnerabilities in terms of economy and culture. If they tried to Zerg-rush the South China Sea they'd have to worry about India coming at them from behind. Pakistan and North Korea wouldn't help and Russia has large stake in seeing China getting crushed militarily. Not mention that to lose (even if not that badly) would be political death for the Communist Party. They don't even have the monetary resources as they're busy using those to stave off a collapse of the economy due to the spending of local governments.

An all-out attack IS unlikely. They're probably posturing to improve their position vis a vis the Spratleys.

But the thing about about saber-rattling is that events can escalate beyond either side's ability to control them.

Look at the start of the German west front in WW1, for example.


Exactly. The best way to prevent a war is to make it seem like a losing proposition from the get go for those who may wish to start one. People don't tend to rattle their sabres when they know that the people that they are rattling them at can and will fight back and have a very good chance of winning.

Well, ok, the really crazy and\or desperate ones do but they don't usually win and usually lose everything in the process. Besides you can't really do much about them except be ready to fight when they inevitably go full retard.
 
2012-12-08 02:50:23 AM

Radioactive Ass: They don't just magically appear and life isn't a video game.


THEN WHY DO PEOPLE I STOMP ON KEEP TURNING INTO COINS?????

ARG!!!!!
 
2012-12-08 03:30:08 AM

mikefinch: Radioactive Ass: They don't just magically appear and life isn't a video game.

THEN WHY DO PEOPLE I STOMP ON KEEP TURNING INTO COINS?????

ARG!!!!!


Stop stomping Hobo's. Didn't your parents teach you better than that?
 
2012-12-09 11:51:55 AM

Radioactive Ass: PunGent: ShonenBat: This is ridiculous. China is not going to attack because it has far too many vulnerabilities in terms of economy and culture. If they tried to Zerg-rush the South China Sea they'd have to worry about India coming at them from behind. Pakistan and North Korea wouldn't help and Russia has large stake in seeing China getting crushed militarily. Not mention that to lose (even if not that badly) would be political death for the Communist Party. They don't even have the monetary resources as they're busy using those to stave off a collapse of the economy due to the spending of local governments.

An all-out attack IS unlikely. They're probably posturing to improve their position vis a vis the Spratleys.

But the thing about about saber-rattling is that events can escalate beyond either side's ability to control them.

Look at the start of the German west front in WW1, for example.

Exactly. The best way to prevent a war is to make it seem like a losing proposition from the get go for those who may wish to start one. People don't tend to rattle their sabres when they know that the people that they are rattling them at can and will fight back and have a very good chance of winning.

Well, ok, the really crazy and\or desperate ones do but they don't usually win and usually lose everything in the process. Besides you can't really do much about them except be ready to fight when they inevitably go full retard.


Yep. My concern here, with a basically quasi-naval confrontation in the area, even without a deliberate Tonkin-style incident, the entire thing could go up based on the actions of one local frigate skipper.
 
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