– USNI News – For China, the broader Mediterranean region is of real interest in terms of both energy security and trade.
– BBC – The US says that China has expanded its programme of land reclamation in the South China Sea.
– US Department of Defense – Department of Defense’s annual report to Congress, Military and Security Developments Involving the People’s Republic of China 2015
– RealClearDefense – A “Great Wall of Sand”? Kudos are due U.S. Pacific Command chieftain Harry Harris for spotlighting China’s misadventures in the South China Sea.
– RealClearDefense – In Jan. 2015, The Namibian reported the existence of a “confidential letter from Namibia’s ambassador to China, Ringo Abed, to Namibia’s foreign minister stat[ing] that ‘a [Chinese] delegation will visit Namibia … for discussions … on the way forward regarding plans for the proposed naval base in Walvis Bay’.”
– USNI News – Six Russian and three Chinese naval ships will meet in the Mediterranean next month to conduct a series of surface exercises to include live fire drills.
– Aviation Week – China may be able to take out an American aircraft carrier with its feared DF-21 antiship ballistic missile (ASBM) without even taking a shot. Now some powerful people in DC are looking to reduce the fleet by a carrier or two in the belief that the DF-21 will make it too dangerous for the ships even to get close to Chinese territorial waters.
– BBC – Satellite images show China is making progress on building an airstrip on a reef in disputed territory in the South China Sea.
– Office of Naval Intelligence – Now added to ONI’s report on “The PLA Navy: New Capabilities and Missions for the 21st Century” are posters detailing Chinese ships and aircraft, equipment, and leadership structure.
– Wall Street Journal – With tensions mounting over China’s island-building in the South China Sea, the U.S. Office of Naval Intelligence has published its first report on the Chinese navy since 2009. Here are five graphics that illustrate some its key findings.
– Aviation Week – As the U.S. takes sharper aim at the Asia-Pacific, China has American military vulnerabilities more squarely in its sights, according to regional geopolitical and military experts.
– Real Clear Defense – On 19 August 2014 a U.S. Navy (USN) P-8A Poseidon maritime surveillance aircraft was flying in international airspace above the Chinese exclusive economic zone (EEZ) ~135 miles east of Hainan Island in the South China Sea when a People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) armed J-11 fighter intercepted it. In a series of maneuvers that came within 30 feet of the P-8, the J-11 exposed its weapons load out and conducted a barrel roll over the U.S. aircraft, passing within 45 feet of the U.S. aircraft. While the incident ended without a collision or harm to the aircrew, it invoked memories of another that did not end as well—the April 2001 collision between a USN EP-3 and a PLAN J-8 in which the Chinese pilot perished.
– The Diplomat – The most striking revelation of the 2015 ONI report is that the PLAN has apparently already equipped a class of guided missile destroyers with China’s most advanced supersonic anti-ship missile. “[T]he newest class, the LUYANG III destroyer is fitted with the new vertically-launched YJ-18 ASCM,” the report says.
– Office of Naval Intelligence – The ONI’s review of the state of the Chinese Navy.
– DefenseTech – The Chinese Navy is preparing to commission three new, nuclear-powered attack submarines with a vertical launching system able to fire supersonic anti-ship missiles.
– National Interest – Fire from all directions awaits the U.S. Navy in a conflict with Beijing.
– Wall Street Journal – China’s territorial ambitions in the East and South China seas are by now well-documented. Much less understood is one of the key factors in the country’s ability to realize those ambitions: an increasingly well-funded and capable maritime militia.
– USNI News – China’s latest nuclear submarine design appear to include a shelter capable of holding a miniature submarine for special operations forces (SOF) not unlike vehicles used to deliver Navy SEALs to shore from U.S. nuclear attack boats.
– Foxtrot Alpha – China isn’t just expanding its military reach into the South China Sea, it’s rapidly building completely new islands, and as you’d expect, that’s generating plenty of anxiety from the other nations in the neighborhood.
– Aviation Week – The general feeling among many of China’s naval neighbors and in U.S. military circles is that China has been turning into a bit of a bully in (re)staking territorial claims in the seas off its coasts, and there’s been an onslaught recently of material on how to deal with the Asian giant on that front.
– World Politics Review – After years of invitations that Beijing did not accept, coupled with last year’s cancellation of the event due to sequestration, the head of China’s navy, Adm. Wu Shengli, led a nine-officer delegation to this year’s International Seapower Symposium. Participants in the plenary and regional breakout sessions no doubt wondered who exactly Wu is, what mandate he has, what sort of navy he leads, where it is heading and how it will be interacting with the U.S. Navy. This article addresses these timely questions.
– War is Boring – Crunch the numbers on the location and number of PLAN visits and it becomes apparent that a desire for prestige and expertise outpaces the alternative explanations.
– War on the Rocks – The introduction of new weapons and platforms into the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has captured the attention of much of the world for well over a decade. However, new equipment is only one element of the PLA’s long-term, multi-dimensional modernization process. There is much to be done and no one understands this better than the Chinese themselves. Based on what PLA commanders and staff officers write in their internal newspapers and journals, the force faces a multitude of challenges in order to close the perceived gaps between its capabilities and those of advanced militaries.
– Washington Times – China carried out a flight test of its new JL-2 submarine-launched ballistic missile last month, highlighting Beijing’s nuclear buildup of missile submarines.
– War is Boring – Beijing is constructing islands—with air bases—in the South China Sea.