Testing to Destruction
Here’s a proposition I hope we never have the opportunity to test. Generals in the People’s Liberation Army apparently have the impression that the PLA can defeat the U. S. military on the field of battle:
For years, Chinese military planning assumed that any attack by the People’s Liberation Army on Taiwan or a disputed island would have to begin with a Pearl Harbor-style preemptive missile strike by China against U.S. forces in Japan and Guam. The PLA was so afraid of overwhelming American intervention that it genuinely believed it could not win unless the Americans were removed from the battlefield before the main campaign even began.
A preemptive strike was, needless to say, a highly risky proposition. If it worked, the PLA just might secure enough space and time to defeat defending troops, seize territory, and position itself for a favorable post-war settlement.
But if China failed to disable American forces with a surprise attack, Beijing could find itself fighting a full-scale war on at least two fronts: against the country it was invading plus the full might of U.S. Pacific Command, fully mobilized and probably strongly backed by the rest of the world.
That was then. But after two decades of sustained military modernization, the Chinese military has fundamentally changed its strategy in just the last year or so. According to Fuell, recent writings by PLA officers indicate “a growing confidence within the PLA that they can more-readily withstand U.S. involvement.”
Their calculations seem to have failed to take our submarine fleet into consideration. Either they are foolhardy or they believe they have a way of neutralizing that fleet.
It’s an interesting post and emphasizes a point too often ignored: all we may really need to do to weather any threat the Chinese might pose to us is wait.