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Water Dragons Of The Middle Kingdom


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#201 JasonJ

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0806 AM

There's been some indications that suggest that the Type 52D destroyer construction numbers might stop at 24 ships. If Type 55 destroyer numbers stop at 8, PLAN will have a big navy but it'll be manageable to balance in the midterm.


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#202 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0808 AM

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

Except for one. They are building up too quickly. Seems like a good idea, except 30 years down the line these are all going to be obsolete all at once and its going to be very expensive to replace them all.

 

The USN had precisely the same problem in the 1970's.


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#203 JasonJ

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0815 AM

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

Except for one. They are building up too quickly. Seems like a good idea, except 30 years down the line these are all going to be obsolete all at once and its going to be very expensive to replace them all.

 

The USN had precisely the same problem in the 1970's.

 

 

Well, partly yes, but for example, with the Type 52D destroyers, they are being made similar to how the Burkes were made in flights. There's been some noticeable changes in the latest Type 52Ds in comparison to the first ones.


Edited by JasonJ, 02 August 2019 - 0816 AM.

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#204 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0822 AM

Well the Arleigh Burkes have been in production like, forever. So yes, you have a point.

 

I guess its getting to the point where we are not really going to see much improvement in hullforms, its mainly going to be improvements in what you see on them. As we saw with the Zumwalts, doing better is cost prohibitive.


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#205 JasonJ

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0825 AM

Well that point you and others have made about too many too soon could also be a reason if they really do stop at 24 with the Type 52Ds.


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#206 Nobu

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0903 AM

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

Except for one. They are building up too quickly. Seems like a good idea, except 30 years down the line these are all going to be obsolete all at once and its going to be very expensive to replace them all.

 

The USN had precisely the same problem in the 1970's.

 

 

I essentially agree with you regarding the ramifications of their hasty build-up, but I see that build-up as being a function of how wonderfully pathetic their naval capability and ability to produce it was as recently as the 90s, combined with their unfortunate realization of how vulnerable their economy was and is to, with all due respect to Mahan, the influence of sea power upon it.

 

If they do anything well, it is economies of scale. Their naval replacement needs 30 years from now could be foundational for a new area of economic growth potential.


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#207 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 0917 AM

Well that is assuming the Chinese economic growth is going to carry on at the level it already has. Im not sure it will. Partly because of Trump (its one area he is getting right) and partly because of civil dissent. Im not currently convinced this is going to end with Hong Kong, particularly if they go in hard.

 

Pure guestimate on my part, Ill fully admit.


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#208 Nobu

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 1006 AM

Happily, civil dissent in China is about as likely as the sun rising from eastwards of the Sea of Japan at dawn.
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#209 RETAC21

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 1031 AM

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

It is a more rational than the one taken by the USSR, in that they are also building a logistic capability as well as an expeditonary one, but they are still short on nuclear subs, ASW and mine warfare. If you don't have allies that cover these gaps, they are in a world of hurt in peer to peer competition. 

 

The navy they have built is great if they want to take on Japan alone, but no more.


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#210 KV7

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 1143 AM

Replacing ships in 30 years time is a near irrelevant concern. If they are not broken in 30 years time they will have such a huge economy it will be trivial, and moreover they will have succeeded in their strategic aims.

 


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#211 Chris Werb

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Posted 02 August 2019 - 1854 PM

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

It is a more rational than the one taken by the USSR, in that they are also building a logistic capability as well as an expeditionary one, but they are still short on nuclear subs, ASW and mine warfare. If you don't have allies that cover these gaps, they are in a world of hurt in peer to peer competition. 

 

The navy they have built is great if they want to take on Japan alone, but no more.

 

 

Agreed. It goes deeper than lack of capabilities though. Even if they had all of those things in the largest numbers they could conceivably build, they are still desperately dependent on international trade (energy and raw materials in, products out) and that trade can be stopped by sanctions or distant blockade that there is nothing they could possibly do to counter.


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#212 RETAC21

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 0430 AM

 

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

It is a more rational than the one taken by the USSR, in that they are also building a logistic capability as well as an expeditionary one, but they are still short on nuclear subs, ASW and mine warfare. If you don't have allies that cover these gaps, they are in a world of hurt in peer to peer competition. 

 

The navy they have built is great if they want to take on Japan alone, but no more.

 

 

Agreed. It goes deeper than lack of capabilities though. Even if they had all of those things in the largest numbers they could conceivably build, they are still desperately dependent on international trade (energy and raw materials in, products out) and that trade can be stopped by sanctions or distant blockade that there is nothing they could possibly do to counter.

 

 

Economic sense never stopped a major war, Germany was France's main client in 1939, but that said, the CCP knows very well it's main clients are the US and Europe and the main suppliers of raw materials, Australia and Brazil (IIRC) so there's very little they can do with a huge navy in conflict vs the US, but they can use it to pressure their neighbours (and in fact there's a naval race going on right now)


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#213 Stuart Galbraith

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 0614 AM

Would it be more appropriate to compare this to the Kaisers Naval buildup than the Japanese one? That its built to apply pressure, not for defending an Empire or fighting a war?


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#214 Chris Werb

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 0628 AM

 

 

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

It is a more rational than the one taken by the USSR, in that they are also building a logistic capability as well as an expeditionary one, but they are still short on nuclear subs, ASW and mine warfare. If you don't have allies that cover these gaps, they are in a world of hurt in peer to peer competition. 

 

The navy they have built is great if they want to take on Japan alone, but no more.

 

 

Agreed. It goes deeper than lack of capabilities though. Even if they had all of those things in the largest numbers they could conceivably build, they are still desperately dependent on international trade (energy and raw materials in, products out) and that trade can be stopped by sanctions or distant blockade that there is nothing they could possibly do to counter.

 

 

Economic sense never stopped a major war, Germany was France's main client in 1939, but that said, the CCP knows very well it's main clients are the US and Europe and the main suppliers of raw materials, Australia and Brazil (IIRC) so there's very little they can do with a huge navy in conflict vs the US, but they can use it to pressure their neighbours (and in fact there's a naval race going on right now)

 

 

It may not have stopped WW2, but it made the outcome inevitable, at least where Japan was concerned. That said, given their extremely passive foreign policy since the 1960s, and lack of any weird warrior religion/philosophy and collective death wish, I'm not ready to compare them to the Japanese in 1941. If you think about it, it took the US quite a while to ramp up to be able to cut Japan off from vital imports - building more and better subs, sorting out torpedo problems, capturing bases for aircraft and submarines, developing air dropped mines etc.. With China all the prerequisites would exist from Day 1, it would just be a question of getting them to the right places. The US just have to tell any ship sailing or suspected of sailing to China that it's fair game to at least be stopped and that known Chinese vessels will be sunk and it's all over. Just the threat of a few P-8s and SSNs would prevent all trade with distant nations. 


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#215 RETAC21

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Posted 03 August 2019 - 0713 AM

 

 

 

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

It is a more rational than the one taken by the USSR, in that they are also building a logistic capability as well as an expeditionary one, but they are still short on nuclear subs, ASW and mine warfare. If you don't have allies that cover these gaps, they are in a world of hurt in peer to peer competition. 

 

The navy they have built is great if they want to take on Japan alone, but no more.

 

 

Agreed. It goes deeper than lack of capabilities though. Even if they had all of those things in the largest numbers they could conceivably build, they are still desperately dependent on international trade (energy and raw materials in, products out) and that trade can be stopped by sanctions or distant blockade that there is nothing they could possibly do to counter.

 

 

Economic sense never stopped a major war, Germany was France's main client in 1939, but that said, the CCP knows very well it's main clients are the US and Europe and the main suppliers of raw materials, Australia and Brazil (IIRC) so there's very little they can do with a huge navy in conflict vs the US, but they can use it to pressure their neighbours (and in fact there's a naval race going on right now)

 

 

It may not have stopped WW2, but it made the outcome inevitable, at least where Japan was concerned. That said, given their extremely passive foreign policy since the 1960s, and lack of any weird warrior religion/philosophy and collective death wish, I'm not ready to compare them to the Japanese in 1941. If you think about it, it took the US quite a while to ramp up to be able to cut Japan off from vital imports - building more and better subs, sorting out torpedo problems, capturing bases for aircraft and submarines, developing air dropped mines etc.. With China all the prerequisites would exist from Day 1, it would just be a question of getting them to the right places. The US just have to tell any ship sailing or suspected of sailing to China that it's fair game to at least be stopped and that known Chinese vessels will be sunk and it's all over. Just the threat of a few P-8s and SSNs would prevent all trade with distant nations. 

 

 

I think the Chinese are worried about Japan/SK/etc. but more so about India sitting astride the route their oil imports and exports take. The current Chinese navy deployable strength is close to the Indian Navy.


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#216 Josh

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 1153 AM

 

It pains me to admit this, but the Chinese approach to seapower appears to be a rational one in various ways.

 

Except for one. They are building up too quickly. Seems like a good idea, except 30 years down the line these are all going to be obsolete all at once and its going to be very expensive to replace them all.

 

The USN had precisely the same problem in the 1970's.

 

 

They spent a lot of time perfecting all of their various designs incrementally and when they got to what they wanted, they started cranking them out to build out a rapid capability. I suspect new designs will be introduced much more slowly and replace relatively young craft that lack the kind of capability they want - the Russian ships, the Type 52B/Cs, the type 21s. There is already some indication type 21s will be retiring soon.

With enough forethought and consistent allocation of resources, which China's lifetime dictatorship pretty much assure, it shouldn't be problematic to phase in replacements. Some ships would be retired early, some perhaps late, but nothing that adequate planning and consistent leadership couldn't address.


Edited by Josh, 07 August 2019 - 1157 AM.

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#217 Nobu

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 1223 PM

The one thing that is also assured about China's lifetime dictatorships is that they also eventually come crashing down, with resultant opportunities for those positioned to take advantage.

 

Their naval capability was so pitiable a generation ago that a minor power could very well have severely interdicted their blue-water seaborne trade.

 

They seem to be building up their capability more to contest superiority with local major naval powers (Japan, India) and dominate local minor naval powers, and less to refight the strategic equivalent of Jutland against the 2019 strategic equivalent of the Royal Navy.

 

This is frustrating in various ways.


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#218 Josh

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 1503 PM

I suspect there will be much political dislocation in China when Xi steps down, or much worse (for the CCP), if he were to die suddenly of natural causes.

 

The PLAN surface ship build up seems directed at local navies. For the US, the effort seems more focused on missiles to engage US surface ships, particularly CVNs, as a deterrent to them getting involved in regional wars. They have a number of exotic high speed projects going in this direction, and at least a few types of super sonic missiles in service.

They don't see to have a particular good answer to USN nuke boats yet outside perhaps flooding the first island chain with ships an accepted the casualties associated with that.


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#219 RETAC21

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 1450 PM

I suspect there will be much political dislocation in China when Xi steps down, or much worse (for the CCP), if he were to die suddenly of natural causes.

 

The PLAN surface ship build up seems directed at local navies. For the US, the effort seems more focused on missiles to engage US surface ships, particularly CVNs, as a deterrent to them getting involved in regional wars. They have a number of exotic high speed projects going in this direction, and at least a few types of super sonic missiles in service.

They don't see to have a particular good answer to USN nuke boats yet outside perhaps flooding the first island chain with ships an accepted the casualties associated with that.

 

I don't think they are planning on takling the US face to face, mainly because they don't need to, but they are certainly worried about their SLOC to their clients which can be cut by their enemies with ease, which explains why they invest so much on escorts and carriers yet they neglect SSNs and ASW. ASBMs can provide the anti-carrier capability required vs the US, but the US can cut the Chinese SLOC and not be near the Pacific Ocean, so it's an interesting capability but irrelevant.


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#220 JasonJ

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Posted 20 August 2019 - 0622 AM

Another picture of the Type 75.

type75b1.jpg

 

Next picture update

type75c1.jpg


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