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  • Taiwan
  • thols2
    Free Member

    The Pelosi visit was a poke in the eye to Jinping and in the lead up to the Congress it’s the last thing he needed. We now have a frankly ridiculous Chineze over reaction to reassert power and they’ve given oxygen to Pelosi’s visit.

    Exactly. He set himself up as the strong man who would reassert Chinese dominance of the region. He could have just brushed off Pelosi’s visit as irrelevant but he chose to make a big deal out of it. She just ignored him so now he looks weak and she looks strong. All he can do now is rant and make a show of sabre rattling but he has no realistic military options. Launching an invasion would be a disaster for China and the entire region, not launching an invasion shows how weak he really is. Sure, he can make a show of some minor sanctions but anything that really hurt Taiwan (or the U.S., Japan, Korea, etc.) would also hurt China.

    revs1972
    Free Member

    the Taiwanese semiconductor industry would be destroyed which would cripple China’s tech industry along with the rest of the world’s.

    I wonder if she’s out there to protect her husbands recent stock acquisition ? 😉

    Or… remove the rivals and your home grown companies will flourish.
    I read recently that Intel are lagging behind the technology of Taiwan and South Korea.
    Mmm ? Where is it she is off to next ?
    I wonder if she will start winding up the Rocket man

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    any plans they may have had for invasion.

    I believe the plans are pretty extensive and detailed, and have been for a very long time.

    I agree concerning the strong reluctance on the part of China to embark on something which would certainly be no pushover.

    And as you point out China has not been involved in any hostilities for nearly 45 years when it invaded a far smaller country to “teach them a lesson” for overthrowing the murderous Pol Pot regime. Despite having overwhelming numbers China barely penetrated into Vietnam and they certainly didn’t hang around.

    The problem is how immensely China has and is changing, in less than 10 years it will have the largest economy in the world, it is building up its military assets at a remarkable rate – in 10 years or so it will have half a dozen aircraft carriers.

    Deliberately poking China in the eye is unlikely to be a wise strategy. Especially after the legacy of “a hundred years of national humiliation” by the Western powers. Engagement and reassurance is probably a wiser one.

    I don’t believe that we would all necessarily die if China felt sufficiently provoked to invade the ROC, but it would most certainly massively screw up the global supply chain, if you want to look at it from a purely selfish perspective.

    nickc
    Full Member

    in 10 years or so it will have half a dozen aircraft carriers

    The flippant answer to this is so what? The US Navy has been operating carriers for nigh on 100 years now (USS Langley launched 1922) They’ve had decades of learning how to use them, how to fight from them and what they are and aren’t capable of, the Chinese are starting from a single refitted Ex-Russian carrier in 2012. The Chinese Navy has less than 750 aircraft in it’s entire fleet, very few of which can currently use aircraft carriers and the one that they’re developing for future carrier operations? They currently have 2. The US Navy in the Pacific alone has over a 1000 aircraft, based on 7 carriers all operational now with years of experience. the US Navy as a whole as over 2500 aircraft just of it’s own. It isn’t a fair fight.

    It’s easy to forget that the US military make these sort of gigantic operations look easy, that’s because it’s a massive and complex organisation that has been doing this very sophisticated shit for years now. Look at the Russian experience for how badly it can go awry  The Chinese at the moment at least just aren’t as capable. It’s just words.

    having said all that. The Chinese don’t really need to invade, they just need to park ships off the coast and blockade Taiwan until it’s on it’s knees. But that’s not as tub thumping or headline grabbing and looks nothing at all like “wolf-warrior” diplomacy

    thols2
    Free Member

    The problem is how immensely China has and is changing, in less than 10 years it will have the largest economy in the world, it is building up its military assets at a remarkable rate – in 10 years or so it will have half a dozen aircraft carriers.

    As Yogi Berra said, “Predictions are hard, especially about the future.” Thirty-five years ago, it looked like Japan was going to pass the U.S. and become an economic superpower. Then they suffered an asset price bubble and three decades of stagnation. China has some major economic weaknesses, including the same demographic problem that doomed Japan. China might surpass the U.S. as the dominant world economy, it’s also possible they will stagnate like Japan. At this point, it’s impossible to know.

    China is frantically trying to modernize its military. How effective they will be in combat is unknown. Their aircraft carriers are fairly irrelevant to the Taiwan situation, it’s so close to the Chinese mainland that land based aircraft will be able to reach there in minutes. Similarly to all of China’s modern weapons systems, China has no experience using aircraft carriers in combat. Integrating combined air-sea-land operations will be extremely difficult and will take years of practice. We shouldn’t underestimate China’s military, but they don’t have any experience fighting a modern war with modern weapons. They may find it harder than they expect.

    thols2
    Free Member

    having said all that. The Chinese don’t really need to invade, they just need to park ships off the coast and blockade Taiwan until it’s on it’s knees.

    This is a bit like the fantasy of setting up a no-fly-zone over Ukraine. A NFZ requires shooting down aircraft that try to enter the zone, i.e. NATO shooting down Russian aircraft. A blockade of Taiwan would require China to sink U.S. ships that sailed to Taiwan. A blockade is really just a euphemism for starting a war.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    in 10 years or so it will have half a dozen aircraft carriers

    The flippant answer to this is so what?

    Well obviously I wasn’t making the comment in relation to an invasion of Taiwan. I was pointing out that China is clearly determined to assert itself. A country with half a dozen aircraft carriers should not be flippantly dismissed – aircraft carriers cost astronomical amounts of money to build and maintain, very few can afford to own one let alone half a dozen. It is a measure of China’s determination that it has such an aircraft carrier building programme.

    nickc
    Full Member

     aircraft carriers cost astronomical amounts of money to build and maintain,

    And as others have pointed out, the arse has just fallen out of China’s real estate market (a huge part of it’s economy) and the largest developer propped up by the leadership has gone under with debts of $250B. I think you’d probably get evens at  bookie that half of these carriers won’t even get built.

    ElShalimo
    Full Member

    China might surpass the U.S. as the dominant world economy, it’s also possible they will stagnate like Japan. At this point, it’s impossible to know.

    China has had 20-25% of the World’s economy for most of it’s existence (in various guises) apart from say 1880-2000.

    It will return to be the dominant World economic power within out lifetimes.

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    The Chinese don’t really need to invade, they just need to park ships off the coast and blockade Taiwan until it’s on it’s knees. But that’s not as tub thumping or headline grabbing and looks nothing at all like “wolf-warrior” diplomacy

    The Chinese don’t need to invade this is correct, but if they did they’ll do it on their own timeline. (I don’t think they’ve any intention of doing it any time soon anyhow. They, like the Americans, would rather the Taiwan economy and technology centres remain intact. )

    Anyhow, you say the US is so experienced. The US is experienced at being the worlds bully. They also have little modern day experience of fighting a near peer. And last time the Chinese and Russians got involved in seriously backing war against the US, the US lost that war. Before that it ended up in a draw.

    So, I wouldn’t be so confident of their dominance in a straight up face off.

    It’s ridiculous conversation anyhow. Both of them need to stay the hell away from this kinda provocation.

    nickc
    Full Member

    The US is experienced at being the worlds bully.

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    What’s the point you are making?

    piemonster
    Full Member

    the US lost that war

    Hang on, potential nit picking alert and without me googling to check.

    Did the US not withdraw after it sort of stale mated, under terms along the lines of a ceasefire first, the north then attacked and won afterwards?

    Not meant as a counter, more a piqued curiosity. I dont have much history on that one.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    They also have little modern day experience of fighting a near peer.

    Is it that much different to fighting a desperately weak poverty riddled country? Quite recently the US lost the Afghan war which they had been fighting for a couple of decades.

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    piemonster
    Free Member
    the US lost that war

    Hang on, potential nit picking alert and without me googling to check.

    Did the US not withdraw after it sort of stale mated, under terms along the lines of a ceasefire first, the north then attacked and won afterwards?

    Not meant as a counter, more a piqued curiosity. I dont have much history on that one.

    Could go into that kinda detail I guess aye. Point I’m making is that US hegemony isn’t as guaranteed as some think it is.

    nickc
    Full Member

    What’s the point you are making?

    Since the end of WW2 and the rise of US hegemony, all war has declined to a point that it’s essentially “not a thing” any more in comparison to any other time in human history.

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    ernielynch
    Free Member
    They also have little modern day experience of fighting a near peer.

    Is it that much different to fighting a desperately weak poverty riddled country?

    In the sense that it’ll affect us badly, yes, it’s much different. We might not all die as I posited yesterday. But just look at the effect the Ukraine war is having on the Energy prices. Even a small scale war between China and America would have serious global repercussions.

    It should be avoided at all costs.

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    nickc
    Full Member
    What’s the point you are making?

    Since the end of WW2 and the rise of US hegemony, all war has declined to a point that it’s essentially “not a thing” any more in comparison to any other time in human history.

    Yeah, we all get that. But US hegemony isn’t alone anymore, we need to live in a world were US and Chinese hegemony can live side by side. Both their militaries are too big for anything else.

    kimbers
    Full Member

    From a military perspective Russias invasion of Crimea has shown that invading a country even with a massive army, is not as easy as orthodxy said.
    A well motivated defense force and relatively cheap, modern drones & antitank weapons make things much harder than many experts thought this time 6 months ago.
    I dont think Xi is as ill informed as Putin, so Id expect lots of sabre rattling rather than actual war- tho sabre rattling certainly raises the liklihood of war

    kimbers
    Full Member

    aircraft carriers cost astronomical amounts of money to build and maintain, very few can afford to own one let alone half a dozen. It is a measure of China’s determination that it has such an aircraft carrier building programme.

    unfortunately for Aircraft carriers, drones do not cost a lot to build & maintain

    just ask the Russians how vulnerable warships are to cheap drones & long range smart missiles

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    kimbers
    Free Member
    From a military perspective Russias invasion of Crimea has shown that invading a country even with a massive army, is not as easy as orthodxcy said.
    A well motivated defense force and relatively cheap, modern drones & antitank weapons make things much harder than many experts thought this time 6 months ago.
    I dont think Xi is as ill informed as Putin, so Id expect lots of sabre rattling rather than actual war- tho sabre rattling certainly raises the liklihood of war

    I don’t think there’s any likelihood of war at the minute, 10-15 years down the line though is a different story. The quality of our politicians is only getting worse.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    just ask the Russians how vulnerable warships are to cheap drones & long range smart missiles

    Now you mention it – after the UK has just built and commissioned a couple of aircraft carriers! 😉

    Although you would have thought that the UK might have learnt the lesson of smart missiles 40 years ago after the sinking of HMS Sheffield!

    montgomery
    Full Member

    This isn’t Korea in the 1950s. There won’t be any human wave tactics; lao bai xing isn’t going to take too kindly to the family’s one and only son coming back in a body bag, whatever the rhetoric of the online wolf warriors.

    timba
    Free Member

    Not having a go at you Ernie but…

    Is it that much different to fighting a desperately weak poverty riddled country? Quite recently the US lost the Afghan war which they had been fighting for a couple of decades

    As the US discovered 1955-1975 you can’t fight an army that melts back into the population, Britain was simultaneously learning the same lesson in N. Ireland and yet the UK/US joined forces to repeat it in Afghanistan. It’s the politicians rather than the military who are so often at fault

    Now you mention it – after the UK has just built and commissioned a couple of aircraft carriers! 😉

    The contracts were announced 15 years ago and they would have been designed years before that. Drones existed then but wouldn’t have particularly been on the MoDs radar 🙂
    They were designed around new gen VTOL aircraft and didn’t need the steam catapults that we first demonstrated in 1950. Built with cheaper engines and without catapults meant that we could afford two carriers, the same number as China

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    The contracts were announced 15 years ago and they would have been designed years before that. Drones existed then but wouldn’t have particularly been on the MoDs radar

    So the UK’s two spanking new aircraft carriers are already obsolete. I guess that’s the bad news. The good news must be that their imminent scrapping will save an astronomical fortune?

    and yet the UK/US joined forces to repeat it in Afghanistan.

    Why don’t politicians listen to their military?

    Edit: Since China currently definitely knows about drones and their capabilities why they planning to have another 3 or 4 aircraft carriers? They are not exactly cheap to build and maintain so it must surely be more than a willy waving exercise?

    dyna-ti
    Full Member

    China is throwing a childish tantrum.’I’ll hold my breath till i turn blue…..’

    Tanks down the beach, posturing for nothing. Last time I checked tank rounds didnt have a range of 100 miles.

    ernielynch
    Free Member

    posturing for nothing

    Weren’t they amphibious tanks? I believe that China has modified many of her merchant ships by strengthening them to take military vehicles onboard. I would have thought that at some point amphibious tanks/fighting vehicles crews would need to have experience on beach terrain – otherwise what is the point of having amphibious vehicles?

    It is obviously posturing by China but I am less convinced that their posturing means that they can’t pose a threat. And presumably their posturing isn’t for the likes of you and me but for the benefit of those who are more acutely aware of China’s actual capabilities?

    dyna-ti
    Full Member

    Amphibious or not tanks aren’t loaded via the beach.They’ll be probably lifted on, and if that being the case there will be plenty of warning.

    As to experience of beach landings, they’ll already have that from conducting exercises. o while the tanks are on the beach, nothing involving them is going to happen, as you say its aimed towards the Taiwanese government and military as in look at this as a scenario.

    But as we’ve seen with the Russian military, who on paper were supposed to be 2nd top, when it all comes down to it who knows how the Chinese troops will react. The only country who we can be assured have a tested military is the US, and I reckon while China has faith in its armed forces, they’ll have taken the lessons of what happened to Russia when they came up against a smaller force as in the Ukrainians.

    thols2
    Free Member

    Useful thread on Chinese military modernization.

    timba
    Free Member

    As to experience of beach landings, they’ll already have that from conducting exercises.

    The People’s Liberation Army are associated with RO-RO ferries. It sounds like a joke, but what better way to supply additional materiel on a secure coastline https://maritime-executive.com/editorials/china-s-navy-is-exploring-ways-to-use-ferries-for-military-landings

    thols2
    Free Member

    As to experience of beach landings, they’ll already have that from conducting exercises.

    I’ve never stormed a beach under enemy fire but I’d bet money on the reality being a bit trickier than peacetime exercises. The ease with which Ukrainian forces took out Russian tanks with portable missiles and drones means that landing craft will be equally vulnerable as they approach a beach. Then, having established a beach-head, the Chinese forces will need to resupply before they can move inland. All those logistics vessels will be vulnerable to missile attack too. To make serious progress, China will need to capture a harbour to unload heavy equipment, but any ships docking at the harbour will be extremely vulnerable to missile attack too.

    timba
    Free Member

    China will need to capture a harbour to unload heavy equipment

    The RO-RO ferries can be used with a pontoon harbour system on any secure beach, the big thing with the system is that it’s never been tried in battle
    The start will be radar, comms and anti-aircraft suppression followed by air superiority and then fingers-crossed. The US has stealth capability to sort the first three, does the PLA? The J20 Mighty Dragon with mach 2 and external weapons seems to be missing the point

    FuzzyWuzzy
    Full Member

    So the UK’s two spanking new aircraft carriers are already obsolete.

    That’s not really how carriers work – they are part of a massive battle group with lots of escorts, many specialised in defence. If the carrier is fighting off drones then something has gone seriously wrong. Hypersonic anti-ship missiles are a bit more of a concern though.

    irc
    Full Member

    On the other hand war between Taiwan, China, and the USA would be good for ecosystems. The massive disruption to wrld trade would cut CO2.

    https://www.scmp.com/comment/opinion/article/3187260/pelosi-taiwan-and-climate-why-military-conflict-might-be-good

    We are in a climate emergency after all.

    nickc
    Full Member

     but for the benefit of those who are more acutely aware of China’s actual capabilities?

    I think that’s the big question isn’t it? No one – not even the Chinese, are in a position to know what their forces are actually capable of. Exercises are all well and good, but at the risk of repeating it, the US military make this stuff* look way easier than it actually is.

    *combined and very sophisticated operations that involves many different branches of the military working together to a plan

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    nickc
    Full Member

    I think that’s the big question isn’t it? No one – not even the Chinese, are in a position to know what their forces are actually capable of

    I’m willing to bet the Chinese are acutely aware they aren’t there yet. I think more importantly they’ll be aware that fighting a war while their energy imports are vulnerable to blockade is more than iffy. (Pretty much their reasoning for the building of the spratly islands isn’t it, so they can control the malacca straits if needed.)

    Hiya Vlad, hiya pal.

    nickc
    Full Member

    Yeah I think that probably right. There’s an old saying that goes along the lines of; Army General is a job where you pretend to do it for ages and then get precisely one chance to see if you’re actually any good at it for real*

    I don’t think for a minute that the Chinese want to “chance” it. I read somewhere that the Chinese Govt really sat up and took notice of the fact that Russia was banned from the SWIFT system in a moment.  I think that response really took them by surprise.

    *Obviously it’s a bit more pithy than that, but you get the gist.

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    thols2
    Free Member
    As to experience of beach landings, they’ll already have that from conducting exercises.

    I’ve never stormed a beach under enemy fire but I’d bet money on the reality being a bit trickier than peacetime exercises. The ease with which Ukrainian forces took out Russian tanks with portable missiles and drones means that landing craft will be equally vulnerable as they approach a beach. Then, having established a beach-head, the Chinese forces will need to resupply before they can move inland. All those logistics vessels will be vulnerable to missile attack too. To make serious progress, China will need to capture a harbour to unload heavy equipment, but any ships docking at the harbour will be extremely vulnerable to missile attack too.

    I think comparing Taiwan to Ukraine in a military sense is probably limited tbh? Geographically they are miles apart. Taiwan is mountainous, but it is also tiny in comparison, it’s the size of Belgium. It would be a completely different war. Geopolitical lessons of Ukraine are more what the Chinese will be looking at rather than on the ground miltary maneuvers. The Taiwanese would be more dug in than the Ukrainians need to be, and would have little options for re-supply once the Chinese blockade the island with a million aircraft carriers and battleships.

    I also wouldn’t doubt that the Chinese would have total air superiority. Only way they wouldn’t is if the Americans were up for a straight up fight.

    piemonster
    Full Member

    I think more importantly they’ll be aware that fighting a war while their energy imports are vulnerable to blockade is more than iffy. 

    Not just energy

    https://www.scmp.com/economy/china-economy/article/3169278/china-food-security-5-major-concerns-loss-fertile-land

    Something we can also relate too

    seosamh77
    Full Member

    piemonster
    Free Member
    I think more importantly they’ll be aware that fighting a war while their energy imports are vulnerable to blockade is more than iffy.

    Not just energy

    Interesting, cheers will have a read.

    It’s wild though isn’t it, the buzzword these days really is self-sufficiency. Globalisation is a busted flush by the looks of it.

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