Civilian Shipping: Ferrying the People’s Liberation Army Ashore

CIMSEC – The Chinese offshore mobile debarkation system, while not as striking as the Chinese Navy’s newest amphibious assault ships, may have greater implications for how the PLA projects power over-the-shore, especially in a cross-strait amphibious invasion of Taiwan. Any large-scale landing by PLA Navy amphibious assault ships will require significant maritime lift for second echelon forces and logistics. This modular pier system may allow China’s substantial fleet of large civilian RO-RO ships to offload combat troops and equipment directly onto Taiwan’s beaches. Proficiency with this system and other JLOTS capabilities will be a critical capability in a cross-strait invasion if the PLA is unable seize Taiwan’s port infrastructure intact.      

Expect China’s Coast Guard to Conduct Counter-Drug Patrols Off Latin America

CIMSEC – The China Coast Guard (CCG) is growing in capability, capacity, and confidence. With an established presence throughout China’s “near seas” in East Asia and further abroad in the North Pacific on fishery patrols, the possibility of additional long-distance deployments by the CCG should be seen as a matter of when and not if. One such location is off the west coast of Latin America in the Eastern Pacific on counter-narcotic patrols due the increasing problem of illegal drugs from Latin America making their way across the Pacific to Chinese consumers.

Navy Arming Surface Ships with Drone Repellent System

USNI News – With the use of drones becoming more prevalent, the Navy has found a way to ensure all of its surface ships can repel unmanned aerial vehicles. The Drone Restricted Access Using Known Electromagnetic Warfare system, or DRAKE, built by Northrop Grumman and originally used on Humvees during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, is now used across the Navy’s surface fleet.

Red Sea Drones: How to Counter Houthi Maritime Tactics

War on the Rocks – Mariners in the Red Sea have long been threatened by pirates, but they now must deal with a much more modern threat as well: unmanned explosive boats. Since 2017, Houthi forces in Yemen have been perfecting their use of maritime drones — sometimes referred as unmanned surface vehicles, drone boats, or water-borne improvised explosive devices — to carry out attacks against maritime vessels and port facilities in the region.