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  1. #1

    China threat?

    Chinese Buildup Of Cyber, Space Tools Worries U.S.


    Published: 13 Jan 2010 16:29

    Senior U.S. officials told a House panel on Jan. 13 that China continues modernizing its missile, naval and fighter aircraft arsenals at a rapid rate, but they raised new concerns about the Asian giant's efforts to develop new offensive cyber and space assets.

    Wallace Gregson, assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific security affairs, said the U.S. is seeing China emerge as an international space power. (AFP) "U.S. military and government networks and computer systems continue to be the target of intrusions that appear to have originated from within [the Peoples' Republic of China]," Adm. Robert Willard, U.S. Pacific Command chief, told the House Armed Services Committee. "Although most intrusions focus on exfiltrating data, the skills being demonstrated would also apply to wartime computer network attacks," he said.

    Beijing shows no signs of slowing what Willard described as a decade-long "aggressive program of military modernization" tailored to "achieve campaign objectives across a broad spectrum of operations."

    And increasingly, that includes new tools designed to project Chinese power across greater distances, striking American information networks, and developing what the Pentagon believes are offensive space systems, according to Willard and Wallace Gregson, assistant secretary of defense for Asian and Pacific security affairs.

    China's Peoples' Liberation Army is making "significant strides" in developing cyberwarfare concepts that range from defending Chinese networks to conducting "offensive operations against adversary networks," Gregson told the committee.

    The latter, he said, is seen by the Pentagon as part of a broader effort by Beijing "of developing an advanced information warfare capability to establish control of an adversary's information flow and maintain dominance of the battlespace."

    While the officials testifying said it remains unclear if the Chinese military was behind attacks on U.S. networks that were launched from China, Gregson called such electronic strikes "consistent with authoritative PLA military writings on the subject." Beijing also is expanding its activities beyond the Earth's atmosphere, the U.S. officials told the lawmakers.

    "We are seeing China's emergence as an international space power," Gregson said. "China is investing heavily in a broad range of military and dual-use space programs, including reconnaissance, navigation and timing, and communication satellites, as well as its manned program."

    The PLA also is working on tools designed to deny potential foes the ability to use their own satellites, he said, via a "a robust and multidimensional counterspace program featuring direct ascent anti-satellite weapons, directed energy weapons and satellite communication jammers."

    Gregson cited China's January 2007 satellite shot-down as an example of its "growing" ability to take out space systems.

    The Asian power's cyber and space efforts are part of a broader military build-up Washington and the rest of the world contends remains behind Beijing's steel curtain of secrecy.

    Gregson noted China's announced 2009 defense budget topped out at $70.6 billion. Pentagon brass think the number actually comes in around $150 billion, or more, Gregson said.

    Willard added: "The PRC's stated goals of a defense-oriented military capability contributing to a 'peaceful and harmonious' Asia appear incompatible with the extent of sophisticated weaponry China produces today."

    According to 2009 data the Pacific Command chief presented the House committee, that weaponry includes 27 destroyers, 48 frigates, more than 70 patrol crafts armed with missiles, 55 amphibious vessels, 40 mine warfare ships and 50 support crafts.

    What's more, "modernization programs have included development of sophisticated shipboard air defense systems, as well as supersonic sea-skimming anti-ship cruise missiles," Willard said.

    China also possesses what he called "the largest conventional submarine force in the world, totaling more than 60 boats" to go along with "a number of" nuclear-powered fast attack and ballistic missile subs. The PLA, Willard contended, is also developing a new submarine-launched ballistic missile, the JL-2, which is "capable of reaching the West Coast of the United States."

    The U.S. officials told the lawmakers China could have an operational aircraft carrier by 2012. Gregson raised concerns that "China may be interested in building multiple operational aircraft carriers by 2020."

    Bollox! Even IF China has much beyond nacent BASIC training abilities for Carrier Ops, they are a minimum of 5-7 years away from INITIAL sea-going capability. To get TRUE offensive Carrier capability, you are probably talking about 10-12 years away..................

    The PLA also has a "growing number" of multimission fighter aircraft, Willard said, adding the Chinese are focused on improving pilot skills in "multiplane scenarios, including operations over water." He said China has put "considerable effort" into fielding air-to-air and anti-air systems, and has developed an anti-ship ballistic missile to target aircraft carriers.

    A larger portion of the Chinese Air Force are its own F-10s and Russian-made aircraft. These fourth-generation fighters, as well as China's improved air defenses, "have reversed Taiwan's historic ability to maintain dominance of the airspace over the Taiwan Strait," Gregson said.

    This reversal will be further bolstered in coming years, he said, when the PLA fields even more modern aerial combat assets, such as aerial tankers that can refuel its fighter jets.

    Panel members voiced concerns about China's build-up, as well as the Pentagon's plans for combating the Asian powerhouse.

    Several lawmakers questioned the executive branch officials on whether the Obama administration was taking the potential threat from China's military seriously enough. Others sounded alarms about Beijing's recent moves to purchase control of vast amounts of the resources key to America's economic might, including rare earth minerals and oil.

    The witnesses did not directly answer many of those queries, taking several, including one on rare earths, for the record.

  2. #2

    US announces $6bn arms sales to Taiwan

    President Barack Obama's administration has confirmed that it will approve a $6 billion (£3.4 billion) arm sales package to Taiwan in a move bound to add to tensions with Beijing.

    By Alex Spillius in Washington

    Published: 8:38PM GMT 29 Jan 2010

    Two US-made CH-47 helicopters of the Taiwanese air force transport military jeeps Photo: GETTY

    The Pentagon's Defence Security Cooperation Agency has proposed to sell Taiwan 60 Black Hawk helicopters, Patriot "Advanced Capability" missile defences known as PAC-3, and mine hunters, though it did not meet Taipei's request for F-16 fighter jets.

    China regards self-ruled, democratic Taiwan as a wayward offshore province subject to unification with the communist-run mainland and had urged Washington not to sell more arms to the island.

    CBI calls on Darling to hold back borrowingThe move is sure to complicate already difficult relations between Washington and Beijing amid discord over trade, human rights, Internet censorship and climate change policy.

    Shortly after the sale was confirmed, He Yafei, China's deputy foreign minister said the sale would "seriously harm" China's national security. He added that the move would have a "serious negative impact" on cooperation between Beijing and Washington.

    The United States, Taiwan's main arms supplier, is mandated by law to aid Taiwan's self-defence, despite switching diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing in 1979.

    The arms package was approved in principle by George W. Bush late in his administration, prompting Beijing to temporarily suspend military relations with Washington.

    Gen James Jones, Mr Obama's national security adviser, indicated that the Chinese government had been fully consulted on the deal.

    "We all recognise that there are certain things that countries will do periodically that may not make everybody completely happy," he said.

    "But we are bent towards a new relationship with China as a rising power in the world, with influence on a variety of issues that go beyond the arms sales and go beyond military confrontation," he added.

    The arms sales announcement may contribute to a bumpy year ahead in bilateral ties. Washington and Beijing have tangled over trade, cyber hacking and censorship of Google, Tibet and human rights.

    Though the two powers are mutually dependent economically, China continues to irk Washington by failing to clamp down on intellectual property theft, undervaluing its current in order to make its exports cheaper and promoting import substitution measures that disadvantage foreign manufacturers.

  3. #3

    U.S. QDR Uses Veiled Language on China

    By wendell minnick

    Published: 18 Feb 2010 12:46

    TAIPEI - The Pentagon's Quadrennial Defense Review (QDR) makes little overt reference to China's military buildup. Missing from the 2010 version are several concerns of the 2006 edition, such as China's cyberwarfare capabilities, nuclear arsenal, counterspace operations, and cruise and ballistic missiles.

    Instead, there's a stated desire for more dialogue with Beijing - and prescriptions for countering the anti-access and area-denial capabilities of unnamed countries.

    Analysts say the QDR attempts to address the threat posed by China without further enraging Beijing.

    "If you look at the list of 'further enhancements to U.S. forces and capabilities' described in the section 'Deter and Defeat Aggression in Anti-Access Environments,' those are primarily capabilities needed for defeating China, not Iran, North Korea or Hizbollah," said Roger Cliff, a China military specialist at Rand. "So even though not a lot of time is spent naming China ... analysis of the China threat is nonetheless driving a lot of the modernization programs described in the QDR."

    Among the QDR's recommendations: expand long-range strike capabilities; exploit advantages in subsurface operations; increase the resiliency of U.S. forward posture and base infrastructure; assure access to space and space assets; improve key intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities; defeat enemy sensors and engagement systems; and increase the presence and responsiveness of U.S. forces abroad.

    All of these could respond to China's development of anti-ship and intercontinental ballistic missiles, ballistic missile defenses, anti-satellite weapons and submarines.

    The report does offer concerns about transparency: "The nature of China's military development and decision-making processes raise legitimate questions about its future conduct and intentions within Asia and beyond."

    It urges building a relationship with China that is "under-girded by a process of enhancing confidence and reducing mistrust in a manner that reinforces mutual interests."

    The new emphasis on confidence-building measures (CBMs) and military dialogue is in tune with President Barack Obama's strategy of offering an "open hand rather than a clenched fist," said Dean Cheng, a Chinese security affairs specialist at the Heritage Foundation. "This includes, it would appear, a greater emphasis on CBMs, arms control proposals and the like toward the PRC [People's Republic of China]."

    Compared with the 2006 QDR, the new report makes no reference to Taiwan, but the reasons might be more pragmatic. "The issue of Taiwan has receded since 2006, as cross-Strait tensions have distinctly declined," Cheng said. "The QDR is reflecting that change."

    Still, Beijing reacted with unusual fury to Washington's Jan. 29 release to Taiwan of a $6.4 billion arms sale, including Black Hawk helicopters and Patriot missile defense systems.

    China canceled military exchanges, threatened sanctions against U.S. defense companies and publicized calls by some People's Liberation Army officers to dump U.S. Treasury bonds.

    China had already sold off $34.2 billion in U.S. securities in December, lowering its total holdings from $789.6 billion to $755.4 billion, but that appears unrelated to the arms sale.

    E-mail: wminnick@defensenews.com.

  4. #4

    China PLA officer urges challenging U.S. dominance

    Sun, Feb 28 23:11 PM EST

    By Chris Buckley

    BEIJING (Reuters) - China should build the world's strongest military and move swiftly to topple the United States as the global "champion," a senior Chinese PLA officer says in a new book reflecting swelling nationalist ambitions.

    The call for China to abandon modesty about its global goals and "sprint to become world number one" comes from a People's Liberation Army (PLA) Senior Colonel, Liu Mingfu, who warns that his nation's ascent will alarm Washington, risking war despite Beijing's hopes for a "peaceful rise."

    "China's big goal in the 21st century is to become world number one, the top power," Liu writes in his newly published Chinese-language book, "The China Dream."

    "If China in the 21st century cannot become world number one, cannot become the top power, then inevitably it will become a straggler that is cast aside," writes Liu, a professor at the elite National Defense University, which trains rising officers.

    His 303-page book stands out for its boldness even in a recent chorus of strident Chinese voices demanding a hard shove back against Washington over trade, Tibet, human rights, and arms sales to Taiwan, the self-ruled island Beijing claims as its own.

    "As long as China seeks to rise to become world number one ... then even if China is even more capitalist than the U.S., the U.S. will still be determined to contain it," writes Liu.

    Rivalry between the two powers is a "competition to be the leading country, a conflict over who rises and falls to dominate the world," says Liu. "To save itself, to save the world, China must prepare to become the (world's) helmsman."

    "The China Dream" does not represent government policy, which has been far less strident about the nation's goals.

    Liu's book testifies to the homegrown pressures on China's Communist Party leadership to show the country's fast economic growth is translating into greater sway against the West, still mired in an economic slowdown.

    The next marker of how China's leaders are handling these swelling expectations may come later this week, when the government is likely to announce its defense budget for 2010, after a 14.9 percent rise last year on the one in 2008.

    "This book represents my personal views, but I think it also reflects a tide of thought," Liu told Reuters in an interview. "We need a military rise as well as an economic rise."

    Another PLA officer has said this year's defense budget should send a defiant signal to Washington after the Obama administration went ahead in January with long-known plans to sell $6.4 billion worth of arms to Taiwan.

    "I think one part of 'public opinion' that the leadership pays attention to is elite opinion, and that includes the PLA," said Alan Romberg, an expert on China and Taiwan at the Henry L. Stimson Center, an institute in Washington D.C.

    "I think the authorities are seeking to keep control of the reaction, even as they need to take (it) into account," Romberg said in an emailed response to questions.

    Liu argues that China should use its growing revenues to become the world's biggest military power, so strong the United States "would not dare and would not be able to intervene in military conflict in the Taiwan Strait."

    "If China's goal for military strength is not to pass the United States and Russia, then China is locking itself into being a third-rate military power," he writes. "Turn some money bags into bullet holders."

    China's leaders do not want to jeopardize ties with the United States, a key trade partner and still by far the world's biggest economy and military power.

    Yet Chinese public ire, echoed on the Internet, means policy-makers have to tread more carefully when handling rival domestic and foreign demands, said Jin Canrong, a professor of international relations at Renmin University in Beijing.

    "Chinese society is changing, and you see that in all the domestic views now on what China should do about the United States," said Jin. "If society demands a stronger stance, ignoring that can bring a certain cost."

    Liu's book was officially published in January, but is only now being sold in Beijing bookstores.


    In recent months, strains have widened between Beijing and Washington over trade, Internet controls, climate change, U.S. arms sales to Taiwan and President Barack Obama's meeting with Tibet's exiled leader, the Dalai Lama, who China reviles.

    China has so far responded with angry words and a threat to sanction U.S. companies involved in the Taiwan arms sales. But it has not acted on that threat and has allowed a U.S. aircraft carrier to visit Hong Kong.

    Over the weekend, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said he wanted trade friction with the United States to ease. U.S. Deputy Secretary of State James Steinberg is due to visit Beijing this week.

    Liu and other PLA officers, however, say they see little chance of avoiding deepening rivalry with the United States, whether peaceful or warlike.

    "I'm very pessimistic about the future," writes another PLA officer, Colonel Dai Xu, in another recently published book that claims China is largely surrounded by hostile or wary countries beholden to the United States.

    "I believe that China cannot escape the calamity of war, and this calamity may come in the not-too-distant future, at most in 10 to 20 years," writes Dai.

    "If the United States can light a fire in China's backyard, we can also light a fire in their backyard," warns Dai.

    Liu said he hoped China and the United States could manage their rivalry through peaceful competition.

    "In his State of the Union speech, Obama said the United States would never accept coming second-place, but if he reads my book he'll know China does not want to always be a runner-up," said Liu in the interview.

    (Editing by Benjamin Kang Lim and Jeremy Laurence)

  5. #5

    Emerging Chinese polar bear policy

    China prepares for an ice-free Arctic


    For immediate release (Stockholm/Oslo) China is preparing for the Arctic being navigable during summer months. An ice-free Arctic would provide China shorter shipping routes, possible access to natural resources and the incentive for closer cooperation with Arctic nations, especially the Nordic countries. But it also raises the possibility of new international tensions, according to a new SIPRI study launched in Oslo today.

    The report, entitled ‘China prepares for an ice-free Arctic’, is based on groundbreaking findings by a Western researcher on China’s evolving approach to the Arctic. The author, SIPRI’s Beijing-based Linda Jakobson, has used her unique access to Chinese officials, scholars and primary sources to assess China’s Arctic interests in: (a) shortened trade routes to European and North American markets, and (b) possible access to untapped natural resources to fuel China’s economy.

    ‘China is slowly but steadily recognizing the commercial and strategic opportunities that will arise from an ice-free Arctic’, explains Jakobson. ‘A few Chinese researchers already question China’s natural sciences-approach to Arctic research and encourage the Chinese Government to make comprehensive plans. These researchers are critical of China’s neutral position toward Arctic politics. But the government does not want to alarm the Arctic states and therefore is cautious in its Arctic policies.’

    In China’s eyes the Northern Sea Route raises the value of Nordic countries

    As China’s economy relies on foreign trade—with nearly half of its GDP dependent on shipping—there could be much to gain if the shipping route from Shanghai to Hamburg is shortened by 6400 km during the summer each year. With insurance costs on the traditional route via the Suez Canal having risen more than tenfold due to piracy, the Nordic countries could become China’s new gateway to Europe. From China’s viewpoint, an ice-free Arctic will increase the value of close ties with the Nordic countries.

    China seeks a more active role in the Arctic Council

    The Chinese Government has allocated extra resources to Arctic research and decided to build a new high-tech polar expedition ice-breaker. It also seeks a more active role in the Arctic Council. China emphasizes that it would like to see any disputes over sovereignty of continental shelves resolved peacefully and through dialogue. At the same time Beijing encourages Arctic states to consider the common interests of mankind in the Arctic. Beijing can be expected to stress this position in the future. Jakobson recommends that Arctic Council nations actively engage Chinese officials and academics on all aspects of the Arctic, from climate change and maritime rescue operations to commercial shipping routes and resource exploration.

    Report: http://books.sipri.org/product_info?c_product_id=402
    Riđđu, arctic storm

  6. #6

    China's military bluster camouflages toothless bite

    Ben Blanchard - Analysis


    Mon Mar 8, 2010 11:06pm EST

    BEIJING (Reuters) - Big on spit and polish and parades but short on experience, new technology and force coordination, China's military has far to go before its bite begins to approach its increasingly loud, and for some fearsome, bark.


    China has invested billions of dollars in its armed forces and is developing advanced fighters and missiles, considering building its first aircraft carrier and is trying to slim its bloated ranks down to a lean, high-tech military.

    The 2010 Defense budget unveiled last week was 7.5 percent higher than last year, a modest rise by China's recent standards, but impressive compared to other big powers.

    Those rises have raised alarm in Taiwan, the self-ruled island China claims as its own, the rest of the region, and especially in the United States, the world's only superpower with a military reach that far exceeds China's.

    In a report to Congress published last month, the Pentagon said it was concerned by China's missile buildup and increasingly advanced capabilities in the Pacific region.

    Yet while China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) looks increasingly fierce on paper, analysts -- and even Chinese army officers -- say it will be a long time before the country has the means to effectively challenge U.S. power, if ever.

    "What is their readiness level? How effective are these things they've developed themselves?" said Drew Thompson, of the Nixon Center, a think tank in Washington.

    "Is their indigenous technology really working, or does it simply exist like a lot of things in the Chinese system, on paper? I would posit it probably leans more toward the latter."

    After a spike in tension that has stoked nationalist Chinese calls for a hard shove back against U.S. influence, some PLA officers are also trying to discourage chest-thumping.

    "There's no way China can threaten the United States," Lt. Gen. Li Dianren, a professor at the National Defense University, told Reuters on the sidelines of the annual session of parliament.

    "Anyone with even a bit of common sense knows that our capabilities do not come even close to matching those of the U.S. In terms of economics, technology and the military, the gap is huge. How can we threaten them?" he added.


    To be sure, China's military is becoming increasingly assertive, as seen by occasional tiffs at sea and in the air, notably in 2001 when a U.S. spy plane made an emergency landing on Hainan island after a collision with a Chinese fighter jet.

    Last March, the Pentagon said five Chinese ships harassed the U.S. Navy Ship the Impeccable, an unarmed ocean surveillance vessel, in international waters off Hainan. China says the U.S. ship was carrying out an illegal survey.

    PLA showmanship is also grand.

    A military parade last October 1 marking 60 years since the founding of the People's Republic of China featured an array of new weapons, all domestically developed.

    "China and the United States are rivals. That's a fact," said Liu Mingfu, author of a book calling for China to develop a military so powerful Washington will not dare challenge it.

    "In the past, U.S. presidents didn't call China a rival, and Chinese presidents never have. But that's strategic hypocrisy, because each side knows the other is a rival," he said.

    Many practical hurdles could hamper Liu's goal.

    China is hardly renowned for producing high quality goods, as a series of product safety scandals in recent years has shown.

    "If you go to the PLA and they show you some fantastic new missile on display at an air show, yes they have a missile system, but does it work? Does it work repeatedly and does it work in combat conditions?" Thompson said.

    "Until you know that for sure you simply assume they've got one heck of an interesting platform that might do us some harm ... but the reality might be far different."


    One problem is the U.S. and EU arms embargo against China following the 1989 military crackdown on the pro-democracy Tiananmen protests, and there is little sign they will lift it any time soon.

    There's also inexperience.

    Unlike the United States, currently engaged in two massive military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, China has not engaged in full battle for three decades.

    China's last major confrontation was with Vietnam in 1979, and that was hardly a glorious victory. Chinese forces crossed the border to punish Hanoi for invading its ally Cambodia, but Vietnam's battle-hardened troops gave the Chinese a bloody nose.

    China has made some impressive technological advances. The successful missile "kill" of an old satellite in 2007 represented a new level of ability. In January, China successfully tested emerging technology aimed at destroying missiles in mid-air.

    Integrating such advances into the country's vast armed forces could be problematic though.

    "The (Sichuan) earthquake in 2008 showed their weakness in joint operations," said Lin Chong-Pin, a strategic studies professor at Taipei's Tamkang University.

    After the massive quake, Chinese soldiers involved in rescue efforts struggled with shortages and bottlenecks magnified by poor coordination between forces and units.

    China's military edge over tech powerhouse Taiwan, a democratic island Beijing has threatened to eventually bring under its control, is growing though.

    Even then, not everyone is convinced China could easily overpower Taiwan, despite its advancing weaponry.

    "The point is to make the U.S. military stay at a distance," said Hsu Yung-ming, a political science professor at Taipei's Soochow University, referring to China's military modernization.

    (Additional reporting by Chris Buckley in Beijing and Ralph Jennings in Taipei; Editing by Benjamin Kang Lim)

  7. #7

    Chinese defence budget prompts mixed market response

    By Jon Grevatt

    09 March 2010

    China's defence budget rise was greeted with an indifferent response on the country's stock exchanges on 5 March as the value of the country's listed defence companies varied between modest gains and losses.

    The reaction is notable because previous defence-related announcements and events in China - such as the publication of the defence White Paper in January 2009, the People's Liberation Army's 60th anniversary parade in September 2009, and previous double-digit budget increases - all saw high growth across the board.

    The spending increase announced by Beijing on 4 March reached 7.5 per cent, or CNY532.1 billion (USD78 billion). Although still considerable by the standards of most Western nations over the past two years, the rise signifies a significant slowdown from the increases of 14.9 per cent, 17.6 per cent and 17.8 per cent over the past three fiscal years.

    The spending increase, which has been proposed to the annual session of the National People's Congress (NPC) for expected approval, is also less than what was predicted within China. For example, Xinhua state news agency said on 3 March that it anticipated a defence spending increase of 15 to 18.6 per cent to around CNY550 billion or CNY570 billion. The lower-than-expected rise has contributed to investors' subdued response.

    208 of 861 words
    Copyright © IHS (Global) Limited, 2010

  8. #8

    CSBA paper on countering the Sea threat..............


  9. #9

    Imagining Smart Grid Adversaries, or "The Cascade Charade"

    As most readers of the DOD Energy Blog can attest from direct experience, sometimes we manufacture enemies as placeholders for potential future enemies. Such was the case recently when a smart and well-intentioned student of Chinese origin, Wang Jianwei, published what he thought would be helpful findings for all students of complex, networked systems.

    However, not long after, his work became known as a blueprint for Chinese attacks on the US power grid. How'd that happen? In order to understand who messed with the info and when, you have to follow the path of the information to detect when and by whom it got scrambled.

    It begins with the the paper trail from Wang's article published in Safety Science: "Cascade based attack vulnerability on the US Power Grid" (which you can purchase in full for $31.50). The paper is found by a group called the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission and is presented as a threat brief to Congress. Ultimately, this reaches the New York Times with in the form of this article published on 20 March 2010.


    My co-blogger on the Smart Grid Security blog, Jack Danahy bought the original paper and read the whole thing, before writing this post about the whole affair with a focus on the grid).


    Of course there are plenty of reasons to keep our eyes open and our guard up. Threats to our electrical insfrastructure can take many shapes, including, as RMI's Amory Lovins points out, squirrels.


    However, back to the paper that started this tempest. According to Wang and others:

    We usually say ‘attack’ so you can see what would happen,” he said. “My emphasis is on how you can protect this. My goal is to find a solution to make the network safer and better protected.” And independent American scientists who read his paper said it was true: Mr. Wang’s work was a conventional technical exercise that in no way could be used to take down a power grid.
    Assuming everything originating in China is a threat to the US ignores our current nearly inextricable economic inter-dependency. As it attempts to maintain its very rapid climb out of the third world, China's own energy challenges are staggering. And if climate change is one of your concerns, then the linkage goes even deeper. We have so much to work on; let's not let our insecurities get in the way of really improving our nation's energy security.

  10. #10

    Threat in Asia is anti-ship missiles

    By Bill Gertz

    The Obama administration's regional missile-defense strategy is designed to counter emerging threats like China's new anti-ship ballistic missile and other so-called anti-access weapons, a senior defense official said Monday.

    Deputy Defense Secretary William J. Lynn III said during a speech outlining the administration's missile-defense priorities that "potential adversaries are planning to employ ballistic missiles in anti-access tactics."

    Mr. Lynn did not name China, but the Pentagon has said Beijing's military is building a new 930-mile-range ballistic missile with a precision-guided, maneuvering warhead that will be accurate enough to hit aircraft carriers and other ships at sea.

    The Pentagon has used the term anti-access weapons for missiles and other weapons that can keep U.S. forces away from China's coasts, and in particular to prevent the rapid deployment of U.S. naval forces in the Western Pacific to aid Taiwan in any future conflict with China.

    The Pentagon's recent four-year strategy review said one of the main priorities for U.S. military forces in the coming years will be to prepare to fight in "anti-access environments" that defense officials have said is mainly directed at dealing with China's growing military power.

    The Pentagon's 2009 report on China's military said that since 2000 Beijing has been building anti-ship ballistic missiles as part of "increasingly credible, layered offensive combat power across its borders and into the Western Pacific."

    "Like asymmetric threats, anti-access tactics are designed to offset our conventional dominance," Mr. Lynn said. "The proliferation of short- and medium-range ballistic missiles will put U.S. forces on land and at sea at increasing risk of ballistic missile attack. This risk could push our forces further from the battlespace, compromising our ability to bring our conventional superiority to bear."

    It was the first time the Pentagon has mentioned using sea-based and land-based mobile defenses against anti-access missile threats.

    The deputy secretary stated that U.S. security guarantees to nations in East Asia and other states in the Middle East "depends on our ability to project power despite these threats."

    "The reality is that we have entered a new and more complex era of hybrid threats, in which high-tech and low-tech weapons are being wielded by state and non-state actors alike," Mr. Lynn said.

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