A Thousand Splendid Guns

US Naval War College Review – In Out of the Mountains, David Kilcullen provides a framework for his “theory of competitive control.” His work focuses on irregular warfare, and in general he addresses nonstate armed groups as one increment along a spectrum of actors competing to control a population. He theorizes that the competitor who can impose predictable norms through persuasive, administrative, and coercive means will succeed. The members of the target audience, for their part, need consistency, and will adhere to this normative system regardless of whether they inherently agree with it or with the competitor’s values.1 What do we learn when we apply Kilcullen’s core principles to China and its conduct in the wider western Pacific as a state-level competitor?

Countering Chinese Expansion Through Mass Enlightenment

CIMSEC – From Newport to New Delhi, a tremendous effort is currently underway to document and analyze China’s pursuit of maritime power. Led by experts in think tanks and academia, this enterprise has produced a rich body of scholarship in a very short period of time. However, even at its very best, this research is incomplete—for it rests on a gross ignorance of Chinese activities at sea.

Pakistan Navy Submarine Force to Equal the Indian Navy’s in Numbers with Purchase of 8 Chinese Subs

Yibada – Pakistan has finalized a deal to acquire eight Chinese-made S20 diesel-electric submarines for the Pakistan Navy, making this class of submarine the most numerous in the navy’s Submarine Service Force (SSF) and giving the SSF numerical parity with its opposite number in India.

Mesa Verde, Navy P-8 Arrive in Haiti To Support Relief Effort; Iwo Jima To Arrive This Week

USNI News – Amphibious transport dock USS Mesa Verde (LPD-19) is in Haiti today and amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD-7) is en route to respond to the island nation that suffered infrastructure destruction from winds and flooding, a death toll of more than 1,000 and now a cholera outbreak after Hurricane Matthew made landfall last week.

Russia to set up Pacific Heavy Bomber Division to patrol seas near Japan, Hawaii, and Guam

Janes – Russia’s Ministry of Defence announced on 6 October the formation of a new long-range Heavy Bomber Division (Tyazheloy Bombardirovochnoy Aviatsionnoy Divizii, or HBD/TBAD). Stationed in the Far East, the unit’s role is to patrol the Pacific Ocean and, in particular, sea areas near to Japan, Hawaii, and Guam.

US Carrier Delays Continue — And Another ‘Gap’ Could Affect The New Administration

Defense News – It’s almost a given that when a new administration takes over in Washington, international opponents find ways to test the will of the new leadership. Russia and China, Iran and North Korea, ISIS and Al Qaeda can all be expected to take actions that will put pressure on the new president to show what he or she is made of. And when the issues arise next year, a new set of leaders are likely to ask the proverbial question, “Where are the carriers?” The answer, at least in the first weeks of the next administration, may not be what people want to hear.