– CIMSEC – On 19 July 2017, after a long transit through the Indian Ocean and around the European continent, a three-ship People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) task group entered the Baltic Sea to conduct exercises with the Russian Navy (RFN). The flotilla reached Kaliningrad, the exercise headquarters, on July 21st. While hardly the first time that China’s naval ensign could be spotted in this Northern European body of water (for instance, a Chinese frigate participated in Kiel Week 2016), “Joint Sea 2017” marks the first ever Russo-Chinese naval drill in the Baltic Sea.
– CIMSEC – This series delves into the evolution of China’s national security debates pertaining to maritime security. Part Two will analyze Chinese maritime policy debates going into the modern era.
– National Interest – In the years to come, Chinese and U.S. drones will likely be in a high stakes cat and mouse game in the Pacific.
– National Interest – Two PLA Navy officers might have a clue.
– China Maritime Studies Institute – An extensive review of all aspects of the Chinese Navy’s surface fleet.
– National Interest – James Holmes writes that word has it that China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLA Navy) has staged a breakthrough in submarine propulsion.
– Korea Times – The US Navy’s Pacific fleet used to mock Chinese submarines for being too noisy and too easy to detect, but that has largely been remedied in recent years, and China is now on the cusp of taking the lead in a cutting-edge propulsion technology.
– War Zone – There’s a massive amount of firepower being amassed in the Baltic Sea, including China’s most advanced operational destroyer and Russia’s largest submarine and cruiser.
– War Zone – The Type 815’s visit is a significant display of China’s expanding naval capabilities.
– War Zone – Chinese forces in Djibouti are just the latest sign that the country wants to expand its military presence abroad.
– Xinhua – Ships carrying Chinese military personnel departed Zhanjiang in southern China’s Guangdong Province on Tuesday to set up a support base in Djibouti.
– Breaking Defense – A Chinese surprise attack tomorrow could annihilate US forces and bases in Japan, two Navy officers found. But deploying more missile defenses — Army THAAD and Navy Aegis — would protect most targets north of Okinawa, Commanders Thomas Shugart and Javier Gonzalez found in simulations. Such a stronger defense, in turn, would reduce the temptation for Beijing to strike first in a crisis.
– CIMSEC – The series of moves by Beijing in the South China Sea are not only tactical decision points, but part of a broader strategic narrative aimed at regional competitors, periphery countries, and the United States. Beijing is sidestepping concerns over its militarization in the region by simply continuing on its own agenda. By downplaying controversial decisions and promoting “standard” and “scheduled” actions or exercises, Beijing is shaping the narrative to its benefit. Additionally, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) leadership is pursuing multiple avenues to promote mutual interests with its neighbors and shift attention away militarization efforts.
– CIMSEC – How should the U.S. military counter China’s maritime irregulars at sea?
– CIMSEC – What dilemma does China’s new aircraft carrier fleet present to China?
– US Department of Defense – The DOD’s latest update on Chinese military power.
– US Naval War College China Maritime Reports – China’s expansion in maritime East Asia has relied heavily on non-naval elements of sea power, above all white-hulled constabulary forces. This reflects a strategic decision. Coast guard vessels operating on the basis of routine administration and backed up by a powerful military can achieve many of China’s objectives without risking an armed clash, sullying China’s reputation, or provoking military intervention from outside powers…but this decision is undergoing a change…
– War Zone – Officially, China’s planned system will gather scientific data, but it also has an unspecified “national defense” role.
– The Guardian – A US navy warship sailed within 12 nautical miles of an artificial island built up by China in the South China Sea, US officials have said, the first such challenge to Beijing in the strategic waterway since Donald Trump became president.
– Center for New American Security – The United States has enjoyed largely uncontested naval supremacy across the blue waters, or open oceans, for decades. The rapid emergence of an increasingly global People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) suggests that this era will soon come to a close. China’s ability to conduct power projection and amphibious operations around the world will become a fundamental fact of politics in the near future, with signi cant consequences for the United States and its allies, all of which need to begin pre- paring for a “risen China” rather than a “rising China,” especially in the realm of maritime security. China’s expanding naval capabilities have implications that are di cult to grasp, and more importantly, consequences that will be impossible to ignore, and it is therefore all the more necessary for U.S. and allied planners to reckon with it now.
– South China Morning Post – Jin Yinan, a former director of the strategic research institute at the PLA’s National Defence University, calls the East Africa navy installation that Beijing has termed a ‘support facility’ a critical military base necessary to protect China’s overseas interests
– The Drive – Could this emerging weapon system become yet another effective threat layer in China’s ever-expanding anti-access/area-denial maritime bubble?
– Congressional Research Service – Ronald O’Rourke’s latest report on the Chinese Maritime Militia.
– CIMSEC – Part I and II of this conclusion to our series on Hainan’s maritime militia discussed the Hainan Provincial Military District (MD) leadership’s approach to constructing maritime militia forces in response to national militia guidelines and how they address challenges during construction efforts. This final installment in our series offers a glimpse into what the Hainan MD’s efforts have yielded in force scale. It also examines the incentivizes motivating the builders of this force, such as political drivers and pressures confronting local officials. The conclusion also outlines issues meriting further observation and analysis, such as the significance of the Sansha Maritime Militia force for China’s third sea force more broadly, and the degree to which Chinese officials frame related efforts as part of a “People’s War.”
– The Diplomat – After a six-century hiatus, sea power development may once again find its center of gravity in the Asia-Pacific. While the Trump Administration plans a naval buildup, China is already well into a buildup of its own.