Read Part 1
1) Two US Island Chain Defenses:
The US now has over 300,000 service men and women in the Pacific Oceanís vast expanses, many located at forward air bases on two systems of island chain defensive belts with underground shelters and rocketry aimed at Red China.
These land-based garrisons are, therefore, really sitting ducks which the PRC can attack at will for as long as it wants: they arenít going anywhere, whereas, a submarine missile defense would be ever mobile.
2) Sea War 1: USN Carriers vs. PRN Subs, Attack Craft, & Massed Missile Assaults:
In 2015, the PRN had over 60 submarines, both Chinese and Russian-built and bought, and 15 more under construction, with but a single aircraft carrier. The PRNís 2050 goal is global force projection with both cruiser and destroyer picket ships to add to its then new carrier fleet to comprise typical naval carrier strike groups comparable to todayís USN such units. It is also
building small surface, high-speed catamarans armed with missiles to attack our carriers in any future Sino-American War, or World War III, as it would soon become, most likely.
Americaís main defensive/offensive weapon in the Pacific is the USNís mighty fleet of aircraft carriers---the victors of World War II in 1945, which since then have made of the Pacific a so-called "American Lake."
The PRN believes that our carriers are vulnerable from missiles fired from more than a thousand miles away in massive waves. Author Peter Navarro in Crouching Tiger (2015) notes that, "It only takes one warhead out of 1,000 launched to get a mission kill," i.e., a sunken carrier with thousands of dead US sailors lost at sea in a single sinking. In this way, the PRN plans to
"overwhelm" the current US carrier maritime defensive system with thousands of rockets.
Another PRC goal is to build its own aircraft carrier fleet to challenge ours as well on the high seas of the world. The maintenance of US air superiority in the Pacific, therefore, is a given must. Unlike our more mobile submarines, our current slow and ponderous carrier fleet is viewed as sitting ducks by the PRN, targets ripe for rocket attacks.
Battleships were made obsolete by aircraft carriers during WWII, and a future WWIII may do the same for carriers. Letís hope we donít have to find out!
3) Sea War 2: USN Blockade and Embargo of Iranian Oil in Straits of Malacca:
What the PRN fears most is a USN blockade of all its major coastal ports, and thus offshore control of its entire economy. The main site of this would be at the all-important Straits of Malacca to choke off the oil it needs for its ships both surface and underwater.
A secondary blockade site is the Miyako Straits, 190 miles off Okinawa---a US ally---and a third is the Luzon, PI Strait, of another longtime US ally, the Philippine Islands. The MS is a major PRN exit point now.
Third and fourth blockade points are the Sunda and Lombok Straits, and all of them could be hit by both US-based rocketry and missiles from our major Far Eastern ally, Japan.
For the foreseeable future, the USN will still have the mightiest sub fleet on the worldís oceans, and it is these that can be most effectively used to seal off the above five chokepoints to deny access to the PRN on the high seas in wartime.
The British Royal Navy blockade against Germany of 1914-20 was a major factor in winning the First World War, and JFKís 1962 blockade of Cuba brought the Russians to heel and ended the Cuban Missile Crisis. It is still a potent nautical weapon.
Today, China gets most of its naval oil from our enemy, Iran, and more from the Sudan. The PRN now has the worldís greatest stock of sea mines of all types.
To counter its weakness regarding oil, the PRC has an overland pipeline from Burma, and is building trans-Eurasian air, road, rail, and pipelines as well. One of its current pipelines runs direct to Hamburg.
The USNís strategy to beat the PRC is called, Air-Sea Battle, and includes strikes against the Chinese Mainland, as well as maintaining that rigid naval blockade off its coast. Currently, the US advocates its traditional navigational freedom of the seas, while Beijing may declare someday an Asian Monroe Doctrine to bar the USN from its offshore islands and coastal ports.
One of the US Senateís Constitutional charges---aside from approving or not US Supreme Court nominees made by the President---is to approve all US treaties with foreign countries. I will be fulfilling this duty very carefully during 2017-21, if I am elected.
4) US Allies: Putinís Russia, Red Vietnam, Japan, the Philippines, South Korea, and Communist Cuba:
Beijing admires Russiaís longtime elected dictator President Putin as, "Putin the Great," as he seeks to regain the former Soviet lands once ruled by Stalin. Putin views Red China, in turn, as his most serious rival, with 10 times Russiaís own population, right on its vast land frontier in Asia.
Geographically, at least, Russia is still twice the land mass size of the PRC, but like whites in the US, Russia fears that Russians will soon be a minority in their own lands. Russia fears, too, that China will seize Russian Siberia with its vast lumber forests, as well as the 1858 treaty port of Vladivostock on the far Pacific, its maritime gateway to the Far East.
Putin can and will be a powerful US ally most likely if we let him, but under the next US President, not this one.
The PRC invaded Red Vietnam in 1979, and bad feelings have lingered ever since. For the last several years, the PRC and Vietnam have waged fierce disputes over the contested Paracel Islands in the South China Sea, claimed by both as national territories.
The SCS is the largest body of water in the world after the five oceans, and a third of all global shipping now travels through it, the "gateway to the Indian Ocean." Reportedly, Communist Vietnam now seeks to be a US ally versus the PRC.
It seems like only yesterday to me that I landed in then South Vietnam at Vung Tau harbor in 1966! US air and naval bases may once again be located "in-country" in the Peopleís Republic of Vietnam, from which the entire SCS could be covered anew.
Japan has 13 US bases---including the USNís 7th Fleet headquarters at Sasebo---and 40,000 US troops in the Home Islands alone, as well as another 14 bases on Okinawa, that I visited in 1966 en route to then S. Vietnam.
Were Japan so inclined---and were we to allow it---Tokyo could become the worldís next nuclear power very quickly, able to swiftly deploy sophisticated nuclear weaponry by both sea and air. As US Senator from Maryland, I will vote against this. Thatís a chance Iím not willing to take.
The PIís contested Spratley Islands are the flashpoint of todayís maritime rivalry between Manila and Beijing. The PRN seized the appropriately named Mischief Reef from the PI in 1994---22 years ago!---and has already fortified them against us, as its "easternmost outpost in the SCS," with radar stations for guided missile systems.
South Korea alone has 15 various US service bases and 30,000 troops.
President Obamaís normalization of relations with the Castrosí Cuba may have an unexpected benefit: the denial of Cuban ports to the future all-ocean, blue water, global navy of the PRC. If so, I would be glad.
The island Republic of Nationalist Taiwan is now, was, and probably always will be the most dangerous flash point that could ignite a real shooting war, if the PRC invades it. Deterring it has always been the US 7th Fleet, as well as our nuclear umbrella over it, Japan, and South Korea.
Both Taiwan and the PRC claim to be the real China, and each asserts that the other has its national territory. The PRC says that there will be war if Taiwan develops its own nuclear weapons, or if the island nation declares its independence from what we and the Taiwanese refer to as, "Mainland China."
Barring those two events, however, it appears that the region can and will remain as it is for the future, just as with the current and likely future Israeli-Palestinian situation: no real change of any kind.
The US views Taiwan as "an unsinkable aircraft carrier," while the Chicoms call it, "a renegade province of Mainland China."
6) Ground Forces:
Todayís largest armies by size are the PRA, the USA, India, and North Korea (!) Iíll write a separate position paper on North Korea soon.
7) The Indian Subcontinent and Pakistan:
The PRC and our ally India have been at odds since the Sino-Indian Border War of 1962, which I personally remember as a teenage student at Calvert Hall, Towson. Pakistan---also our quasi "ally"---is Indiaís main enemy, and the PRC sells nuclear weapons to Pakistan, former home of the late Osama Bin Laden. Both India and Pakistan are nuclear powers---not good, but there it is.
As of 2015, the Chinese Army maintained half a million troops in Tibet and Xinjiang on the Indian border, plus five strategic airfields and "hundreds" of Chinese missiles to Indiaís "dozens." India and China may be independently involved without us in future water wars.
India has 40% of the worldís population, but only 10% of its water supply, and its water crisis years are projected to be during 2025-50. India fears that the PRC will someday divert its major rivers away from India and instead into Chinaís Yellow River.
One of the major future cataclysmic events in the next 10 years or so is that a famine will sweep the Subcontinent, hitting Pakistan very hard. It is projected that when it runs out of food, it will sell nuclear weapons to terrorists to feed its population. When it sells its crop seeds, then the real disaster will begin, because no new crops will then be able to be planted and
8) Nukes, Missiles, and Battleground Space:
The PRCís Great Underground Wall is a maze of tunnels allegedly 3,000 miles long, with mobile nuclear missiles aimed at the US, India, Japan, Vietnam, and the Philippine Islands. PRN nukes at sea can strike Seattle, Chicago, New York, and Baltimore.
The nuclear sword of Damocles has prevented WWIII for the last 70 years---my entire lifetime plus---and for that I am grateful. The reality is that nuclear fallout from any such war on the planet would result in poisonous fallout reaching us here in a single week, via air currents.
Imperial Japan used those same air currents during WWII to float balloon bombs across the Pacific they calculated would land in the Western US---and did, exploding in the Pacific Northwest and Texas, as well as elsewhere. This was kept top secret from us until 1974!
Notes Navarro, "If enough" (nuclear airborne material) "were generated, a nuclear winter might engulf the whole world." Hereís a chilling anecdote: in 1945, many of President Trumanís advisors swore that our atomic bombs wouldnít work, while others told him that they would, but might also cause a chain reaction that would set on fire the planetís entire atmosphere; he dropped
them anyway, not knowing what would happen. We lucked out!
The PRC has a system of anti-satellite weapons with which to jam our early warning system satellites in space, and will someday have its own space station, from which it will be able to deploy nuclear weapons aimed at us.
Indeed, in 2007, the PRC scored a direct hit on one of its own satellites in space. Thus, a space war will someday soon also be a reality with which weíll have to deal.
9) Manufacturing, Economy, & Environment:
The PRC has become one of the worst---if not the worst---polluters on Earth, and thus already represents a severe environmental threat to the entire rest of the planet, now has 20 of the worldís most polluted cities.
Worse, the PRC is a haven of cheap labor, low taxes, and virtually no meaningful environmental, health, and/or safety regulations at all. It now is the fastest expanding economy on Earth, as well as the planetís #1 manufacturing economy, combined.
Economically, we need to get control of our trade deficit with the PRC by buying less from it, as purchasing Chinaís goods only helps it grow a stronger military for use against us! In 2015, the US trade deficit with the PRC was a whopping $ 300 billion a year!
We should recognize that the PRC is not without its own major problems: pollution that is poisoning its people, repression that is the downfall of all dictatorships ultimately, and the simple desire of people everywhere to want to be free.
It behooves China to work with and not against us in these regards. Another major PRC weakness is its core fear of its people gaining more Internet access, thus finding out what they donít know about their own country.
We can help them learn more, as Radio Free Europe defeated European Communism in the 20th Century. Currently, the PRC has an estimated 50,000 cyber cops policing its own cyberspace, plus invading ours.
We need to stop running our current, massive trade imbalances, and stop transferring both our investments and technology to militaristic China as well.
The PRCís currency manipulation allows it to ramp up its budget reserves to buy the very weapons systems it needs to defeat us. Currently, the PRC forces US firms resident in China to turn over their technologies to the host nation, China.
We can stop this by bringing these firms back home. The Clinton Administrationís NAFTA sent 70,000 US factories offshore that accounted for 25 million lost US jobs, thus unemploying millions. I will help repeal NAFTA in the US Senate accordingly.
Today, the PRC has the worldís largest industrial base, military forces, and population, with a GNP four times that of Russia, and second only to us. In the future, the PRCís economy will best ours, and that is just a fact of life with which we will have to adjust to in the 21st Century.
Conversely, China imports not only oil, but also copper, iron ore, tin, lumber, corn, and soybeans, while more than half of its GNP is exports, and thus very vulnerable to any USN blockade.
One thing that we can, should, and must adapt from China, however, is how to better emulate its superior, world-class cross-continental rail lines. When I was born in 1946, the US had the worldís best rail service, that by the time I was 21 we had let fall to the ground, basically.
In 1967, I knew from my own eyes that the US was in trouble when I rode the 150-mph Japanese bullet train from Atami on the coast to the capital at Tokyo. My first thought was, "We beat them in the war, but now they have this, and we donít." I was right, and I hadnít needed to be told, or read about it: I saw it first-hand.
Another thing that we can and should consider doing is to partner with China in building both its future cars and our own. That way, we can both better impact the Chinese environmental footprint on the same planet in which we all live.
10) BT Naval & NASA Program:
The US can counter the PRC with a Great Wall in Reverse, that of nuclear-armed submarines as, "the tip of the spear," in Navarroís words.
In 1992---as a then Congressional press secretary on Capitol Hill---I attended the christening of the massive nuclear sub USS Maryland at the Electric Boat Company works at Groton, CT. From hull to exterior deck, it was fully three stories high! Security there was tighter than at the White House, where I had interviewed then-President Carterís doctor for The Maryland State
Medical Journal in 1977.
Thus far, the PRN hasnít developed its own anti-sub capability as much as it might have, so that gives the USN an advantage. We can also mine the PRCís own waters and harbor approaches, thereby "winning without fighting."
As an elected US Senator from Maryland, I would take a close look at NASAís current budget, with an eye to seeing what more it may need to defend us. In the US Senate, I would vote to build more subs---and less carriers---for the Navy.
Thus, there doesnít have to be war with China, and in the US Senate from Maryland, I will do all that I can to see that it never happens. After all, we beat the former collapsed Soviet Union without a world war. We can do it again, by working together.
Thank you for your kind consideration!