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Military: Huanqiu Report: “PLA Warships Appeared Near the U.S. Coast”

Huanqiu reported that the U.S. Department of Defense revealed, on September 12, that China’s warships appeared near the U.S. coast. The U.S. posted a picture which showed that, on August 30, the U.S. Coast Guard patrol ship USCGC Bertholf was conducting “close surveillance” of Chinese naval vessels entering international waters in the U.S. exclusive economic zone near the Aleutian Islands. The Chinese vessels included a Type 055 destroyer, a Type 052D destroyer, and a replenishment ship.

Though Huanqiu quoted a Chinese military expert as stating that “this might be a routine ocean-going training exercise and that there is no offensive implication,” the hottest comments in this article by the Chinese netizens overwhelmingly suggested that they view it as an answer to the U.S. naval ships sailing in the South China Sea. While Beijing claims the waters there to be China’s waters, the international community does not.

Some of the comments were:

“China’s freedom of navigation has begun, and the U.S. needs to get used to it!”

“Right, we should knock on the U.S. door to see if the American Empire is home.”

“Do unto others as you would have them do unto you! You Yankees can sail freely, why can’t China sail freely? This is the best answer to you Yankees.”

“It is to provoke (confrontation). So what!”

“It’s just free sailing. Chinese warships are brave adolescents who like to wander around to any location in their own territory. So what if you don’t like it?”

Source: Huanqiu, September 14, 2021

U.S.-China Relations: Huanqiu’s Editorial on the U.S.-Taiwan Connection

Huanqiu published an editorial regarding two developments in U.S.-Taiwan relations. The first was a report that the U.S. is considering Taiwan’s proposal to rename Taiwan’s representative office in Washington from the “Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office” to the “Taiwan Representative Office.” The second development was that senior U.S. officials had an in-person meeting with the Taiwan Foreign Minister in Annapolis, MD, which is a one hour drive away from Washington, DC.

Huanqiu’s editorial said,

“The U.S. side is well aware that this is not a trivial matter, and they are now in the stage of releasing information and testing the reaction of mainland China.

What is there to test? They want to push the matter to the tipping point of a showdown. Mainland China has no choice but to meet the challenge and prepare for a showdown with them.

If the U.S. changes the name of the Taiwan Representative Office, the mainland’s diplomatic response will not be lower than our response to Lithuania at all. It can fully expected that China will recall its Ambassador from the U.S.

Having only a diplomatic response is obviously not enough. If the U.S. and Taiwan rename Taiwan’s office, they have violated the red line of (China’s) Anti-Secession Law. Mainland China needs to take severe economic and military measures to combat the arrogance of the U.S. and Taiwan. The mainland should apply severe economic sanctions against Taiwan or even impose an economic blockade, depending on the situation.

Militarily, mainland warplanes should fly over the sky of the Taiwan island and include Taiwan’s airspace as part of the People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA’s) cruising patrol. This is a step that mainland China must take sooner or later, and the office renaming will provide a sufficient reason for the mainland to assert its sovereignty over Taiwan. We expect that the Taiwanese military will dare not stop the PLA warplanes from flying over Taiwan. If they dare to open fire, let us deliver a decisive and devastating blow to the ‘Taiwan independence’ forces without hesitation.

Actually, the Taiwan issue is a willpower contest. Since Beijing has declared that Taiwan is China’s core interest, we will act resolutely to guard this bottom line of our national interest and pay any price for it.

It seems that sooner or later, a big, earth-shaking storm will come to the Taiwan Strait. Even if the U.S. and Taiwan retreat their foot this time, their foot will cross the line the next time. Now we need to get ready to ‘break their legs’ in the Taiwan Strait at any time.”

Source: Huanqiu, September 12, 2021

Global Times: Chinese Warships Must Speed Up their Appearance at Guam and Hawaii

Global Times recently posted an article with the author’s name Hu Xijin, the newspaper’s Editor in Chief. Hu offered a response to the recent U.S. Navy’s freedom of navigation mission in the South China Sea. The Southern China Military Theater announced its navy and its air force responded with a warning and a “drive-away.” Hu said there are disputes between China and the United States. However, international law does not give any country the power to use warships to forcibly break into and challenge the sovereignty claimed by other countries. The reason the U.S. dares to do this is that only it has the power to do so. However, “China is getting stronger.” Just telling this truth to the U.S. is not enough. China needs to take active actions. In the not-too-distant future, the U.S. will definitely see the People’s Liberation Army appear at its doorstep, like Guam and Hawaii. Hu expressed the belief that, sooner or later, there will be an accident in the South China Sea and it will happen between China and the United States. The United States is the greatest threat to peace in the South China Sea, and it may eventually ruin the peace there.

Source: Global Times, September 8, 2021

Beijing Passed a “Maritime Traffic Safety Law,” Regulating Submarines and Nuclear Ships

In April, Beijing passed the “Maritime Traffic Safety Law of the People’s Republic of China” and started enforcing it on September 1.  According to the law, five types of foreign ships entering China’s territorial waters need to report to China’s Maritime Administration, including: submarines; nuclear-powered ships; ships carrying radioactive substances; ships carrying toxic and harmful substances such as oil, chemicals and liquefied gases in bulk; and other ships that may endanger the safety of China’s maritime traffic as stipulated by laws, administrative regulations or the State Council.

Beijing has taken several coral reef islands in the South China Sea and built them into permanent islands, thus expanding its claim to territorial water deep into South China Sea. Observers pointed out that the first two items in its must-report list – submarines and nuclear-powered ships – are likely to refer to U.S. naval ships.

Source: United Daily News, August 30, 2021

The U.S. military Rarely Dispatched 25 F-22s to Western Pacific

Well-known Chinese news site Sina (NASDAQ: SINA) recently reported that the Hawaii-based U.S. Pacific Air Force Command said that it will deploy approximately 25 F-22 Raptor fighter jets to Guam and Tinian to participate in an exercise named Pacific Iron 2021. Ken Wilsbach, commander of the U.S. Pacific Air Force said the U.S. has never deployed so many Raptor fighters in the Pacific Air Force combat area. The F-22 is a fifth-generation fighter with stealth combat capabilities and is one of the most advanced fighters in the world. Dispatching over 20 F-22 fighters is an unusually large-scale deployment. Analysts expressed the belief that this is a “strong deterrent signal” sent by the United States to its “potential adversary” China. A typical F-22 deployment includes six to twelve fighters. The U.S. Pacific Air Force is demonstrating that they can deploy the same or more fifth-generation fighters than are in China’s entire current inventory in a short period of time. The Chinese Air Force now has about 20 to 24 fifth-generation fighters in service. Today, the U.S. military has around 180 F-22s.

Source: Sina, July 17, 2021

China Is Developing Supersonic Plane: Reach Anywhere on Earth in One Hour

According to a study by scientists involved in Chinese missions to Mars and the Moon, China is developing a supersonic aircraft which is larger than the Boeing 737.

The aircraft is 45 meters long, nearly a third longer than the Boeing 737-700, with two aspirated engines on top of the fuselage. The design has a pair of delta wings similar to those of the Concorde, but with the wingtips pointing upward. Such a complex design poses multiple aerodynamic challenges when the aircraft enters hypersonic speeds or exceeds five times the speed of sound. Researchers are using a new aerodynamic model to evaluate the aircraft’s performance at high altitudes and has proven effective on China’s latest space missions.

Liu Rui from the Beijing Institute of Technology and collaborators from the Institute of Aerospace Systems Engineering (宇航系统工程研究所) published a paper in the journal Physics of Gases. Liu was a key scientist on the Mars landing and lunar rock sampling missions. According to official media reports both of these required the spacecraft to fly through the atmosphere at hypervelocity.

Source: Sputnik News, July 14, 2021

Global Times: South Korea’s Second “Quasi Aircraft Carrier” Officially Enters Service

Global Times recently reported that South Korea’s second amphibious assault ship Marado Island officially entered service on June 28, 14 years after the first ship Dokdo entered service. Marado Island has greatly improved based on lessons learned from the Dokdo. It is also armed with the latest equipment. Marado Island is 199.4 meters long and 31.4 meters high, and can carry around one thousand officers and soldiers. It can support the take-off and landing of five helicopters at the same time, and can also carry high-speed landing crafts as well as amphibious combat vehicles. Marado Island is equipped with four-sided fixed radar for the U.S. Aegis System and its detection and command capabilities have been further improved. The South Korean Navy stated that the Marado Island will conduct combat missions starting in October this year, after a formal evaluation of its operational capabilities.

Source: Global Times, June 29, 2021

Sputnik Chinese: China’s Nuclear Arsenal Shows Record Growth

Well-known Russian news agency Sputnik recently reported on its Chinese Edition site that the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI) annual report showed the growth rate of China’s nuclear arsenal ranked among the world’s leaders for the second consecutive year. Within one year, China’s existing nuclear warheads increased by 30, reaching 350. In 2019, China surpassed France (which had 290 nuclear warheads) in this regard, and in 2020 it became the world’s third largest nuclear arsenal country. SIPRI pointed out in its annual report that China is building a nuclear-weapon society, which includes solid-fuel ground-based missiles, six nuclear submarines and bombers equipped with ballistic missiles. These strengthen its ability to respond when threatened. The report also indicated that the Chinese People’s Liberation Army has resumed the use of H6N bombers on nuclear weapons and has also developed the first H20 strategic bomber that can refuel in the air and has a flying distance of 8,500 kilometers. The major nuclear powers, Russia and the United States, reduced their arsenals of nuclear warheads last year. Russia reduced its arsenal by120 warheads to 6,255, and the United States reduced its arsenal by 150 warheads to 5550.

Source: Sputnik Chinese, June 15, 2021