Wednesday, May 04, 2016

"6" PLAN ships to conduct drill in South China Sea

As always, the Chinese version (here) from the official PLA news website is in greater detail on this drill over the English Xinhua brief below, namely:

* Incorporate military reconnaissance feeds from South China Sea garrisons (confirming a long suspected capability possessed by those island garrisons)
* First deployment of DDG174 Hefei, the latest member of Type 052D, commissioned in Dec 2015.
* An unknown number of submarines to provide "Anti-blockade" support

Chinese navy to conduct drill in South China Sea
Source: Xinhua   2016-05-04 20:58:44     [More]
BEIJING, May 4 (Xinhua) -- Three naval ships of China's Nanhai Fleet left a naval port in Sanya, Hainan Province, on Wednesday, kicking off an annual combat drill in the South China Sea and neighboring waters.

The three ships include missile destroyer Hefei, missile frigate Sanya and supply ship Honghu. They will later be joined by missile destroyers Lanzhou and Guangzhou, as well as missile frigate Yulin, which are now carrying out other duties.

With three helicopters and dozens of "special warfare" soldiers, the fleet will be separated into three groups that will sail to areas of the South China Sea, the east Indian Ocean and the west Pacific, to conduct varied drills.

The fleet will mobilize naval air force, garrison forces in the Xisha and Nansha islands, and forces of the Beihai Fleet along the way to take part in the drill.

The drill aims to enhance combat readiness and practise coordination between ships and aircraft, and other forces, the navy said.

Keeping up with China’s Evolving Military Strategy

For those in the DC area, it is an event worthy of your time.  Go check it out.

Sixth Annual China Defense and Security Conference

The Jamestown Foundation

Thursday, May 12, 2016 from 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM (EDT)


Keeping up with China’s Evolving Military Strategy
Joe McReynolds and Peter Wood
May 4, 2016

For over two decades, the People’s Republic of China has been engaged in a grand project to transform its military into a modernized fighting force capable of defeating major foreign powers. After the first Gulf War saw the United States use precision-guided munitions and networked technologies to decisively defeat Iraq’s aging, mechanized forces, Chinese military thinkers concluded that a similar fate awaited the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in combat unless drastic changes were made. From that point onward, readying the PLA to fight in modern warfare has been firmly enshrined as one of China’s highest policy priorities.

Each of China’s successive leaders has left their own imprint not only on the PLA’s force structure, but also on its strategic guidance. Jiang Zemin’s initial focus on developing the PLA’s ability to win a “local war under high-tech conditions” gradually morphed into Hu Jintao’s emphasis on building an “informatized” force capable of surviving and winning at modern information warfare, as well as enabling the PLA to carry out what Hu termed the “New Historic Missions,” which emphasized military operations other than warfare (MOOTW) for the first time. Under Xi Jinping, China focuses on developing the capabilities necessary to win the “informatized local wars” that China may one day fight over its expanding list of “core interests” in the South China Sea and elsewhere.

Despite close economic ties, sharp differences over foreign policy and China’s military modernization have forced the U.S. military and policy communities to prepare for the possibility of a serious confrontation with China. It is vital to understand not only the capabilities of China’s modernizing military but also the military thinking of China’s leadership when formulating policy or responding to China’s actions.

For their part, Chinese academics, analysts and scholars clearly understand the importance of such strategic thought, and devote tremendous energy to translating, debating and understanding U.S. military-strategic debates and predicting U.S. strategic developments.

However, in the United States, despite the great attention that has been devoted to cataloging the PLA’s advances in its military platforms and technology, there is little comprehensive information available to the U.S. policy community regarding recent developments in Chinese strategic thought. China’s military-strategic bodies publish a variety of influential and authoritative works explaining recent trends and debates, but few Western China analysts possess both the subject-matter expertise and Chinese language ability to absorb and contextualize this output and convey its central insights to a Western policy audience. When information does reach Western policymakers, it does so after an extreme delay. Authoritative Chinese publications on strategy often take years to prepare, and then additional time elapses before Western analysts begin to integrate the new materials into their assessments. This time lag complicates efforts at mutual strategic understanding in what is arguably the world’s most important bilateral national security relationship.

As a result, foreign discussions of Chinese military behavior generally center on observing new military hardware as it is introduced into service and parsing the public declarations and actions of the Chinese leadership, neither of which are sufficient for predicting Chinese military and civilian decision-making in the event of a crisis. A forthcoming volume from the Jamestown Foundation, China’s Evolving Military Strategy, aims to address these challenges by offering sector-by-sector expert assessments of important recent developments in Chinese strategic thought to the Western foreign policy community. The Jamestown Foundation is also hosting a conference on May 12th that will include many of the authors of China’s Evolving Military Strategy, and include discussion of many of the themes mentioned above. With a serious investment of time and attention, we believe this gap in strategic understanding can eventually be rectified.

Joe McReynolds is a Research Analyst at Defense Group Inc.’s Center for Intelligence Research and Analysis and the China Security Studies Fellow at the Jamestown Foundation. He is an expert on China’s information warfare capabilities and defense industrial development.

Peter Wood is the Editor of the Jamestown Foundation’s China Brief publication.

Monday, May 02, 2016

Day at the field: Armored Regiment, 37th Motorized Infantry Division, 13th Group Army, Western Theater Command

This PLA "regional RRU" is responsible for external threats from the West as well as a back up to local Armed Police for handling terrorism activities.  Together with other RRUs, they have priorities in getting new gears, such as the ZBD04A IFV. 

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Photos of the day: East Sea Fleet's 5 new amphibious warfare assets

In quick succession, the PLAN commissioned five new amphibious warfare assets to its East Sea Fleet. A testament to China's shipbuilding capacity.  That said, according to many military analysts, China can only sealift about one division of 10,000 men at a time so there is nothing to worry about.

Here are the pics of the new East Sea Fleet members.

 Type072A 914 Wuyi Shan
 Type072A 915 Culai Shan
 Type072A 916 Tianmu Shan
 Type072A 917 Wufai Shan
 Type071 988 Yimeng Shan

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Three Type072A LSTs commissioned to East Sea Fleet in a single day.

Three new tank landing ships commissioned to PLA Navy
Source: China Military OnlineEditor: Yao Jianing
2016-03-08 16:110

Three new tank landing ships are moored to the pier at the port of a landing ship flotilla with the East China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy on March 7, 2016.

BEIJING, March 8 (ChinaMil) - - The commissioning, naming and flag-giving ceremony for three new tank landing ships, namely Wuyishan, Culaishan and Wutaishan, was held at a naval port of a landing ship flotilla with the East China Sea Fleet of the PLA Navy on March 7, 2016, indicating that the three new warships were officially commissioned to the PLA Navy.

The Wuyishan warship (hull number 914), Culaishan warship (hull number 915) and Wutaishan warship (hull number 917), independently developed and produced by China itself, are the same type of tank landing ships.

They have a maximum displacement of more than 5000 tons and are mainly used to deliver soldiers in support of the sea-crossing and island-landing operations. They can also take on diversified military missions in peace time, such as transportation for war preparedness, maritime rescue and national defense education.

Wu Minghui, captain of the tank landing ship Wuyishan, delivered a speech on behalf of the officers and soldiers of the three new warships at the ceremony.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

PLAN commission of the day: Landing Ship, Tank 916 Tianmushan into the East Sea Fleet

Displacement 5000 Tons and with a maximum speed of 20 knots.

Friday, December 25, 2015

PLAN commission of the day: Fourth Type 071 LPD Yimeng Shan 988

South Sea Fleet's 6th Landing Ship Flotilla has the first three Type 071 LPDs, it is reasonable to expect 988 Yimeng Shan to form a new 3-LPD squadron with the East Sea Fleet.