So China Has a New Aircraft Carrier. So What?

China's first aircraft carrier, the Liaoning (PLAN CV-16). Source: Author photo, with credit to Google Earth.

China has an aircraft carrier -- and it's making a lot of people nervous.

In fact, depending on whom you believe, China may be well on its way to building a second aircraft carrier. Or a third. Or even a fourth.

Over the weekend, DefenseNews.com reported that construction of a sister ship to China's Liaoning (PLAN CV-16) carrier has definitely begun. Liaoning Provincial Communist Party Secretary Wang Min told delegates to the 12th Provincial People's Congress last week that China's second aircraft carrier is now under construction in the port city of Dalian. According to the South China Morning Post, China aims to complete the carrier by 2018. With China's military budget having tripled over the past decade, plans are in place to arm the People's Liberation Army Navy, or PLAN, with as many as four aircraft carriers by 2020.

According to Richard Fisher, senior fellow at the International Assessment and Strategy Center, China could begin work on its third aircraft carrier at the Jiangnan-Changxin shipyard in Shanghai "very soon."

This, says DefenseNews, has experts "wary" over China's intentions. But what are these intentions, exactly?

Crisis and opportunity
There are three possible scenarios to describe China's sudden interest in joining the world's aircraft-carrier club. And while some of these scenarios might worry some people, when viewed in the most positive light, each scenario also offers us reasons to be optimistic, and to welcome China's aircraft-carrying ambitions.

Scenario No. 1: China as global superpower
Under the first scenario, China's desire to build aircraft carriers, plural, suggests a desire to assume global superpower status -- to challenge the U.S. for supremacy of the seas.

Maybe that's their aim. U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission member Larry Wortzel, for one, sees China's carrier-building activities as proof positive that "the PLA and the party are serious about operating carrier battle groups in the near and far seas by about 2020."

Yet according to Hong Kong's Ta Kung Pao newspaper, PLAN Senior Capt. Li Jie says China's new carriers will be only "medium-sized" vessels "of about 53,000 tons displacement" -- smaller even than the Liaoning. Placed side-by-side with the class of new 100,000-ton Gerald R. Ford-class supercarriers that America is building, China's mini-carriers would seem veritable bathtub toys, half the size of the Ford class, and carrying only one-third the fighter aircraft. That hardly sounds like a threat.

A side-by-side comparison of America's USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN-78) and China's Liaoning (CV-16). China's new carriers would be even smaller. Illustration: Wikimedia Commons.

Scenario No. 2: China as regional mini-power
A more likely scenario is that China is building carriers to project power in its own neighborhood -- in Japan and the Philippines in particular.

Wortzel notes that building a carrier fleet would permit China to "project power more effectively in the South China Sea." Chinese People's Liberation Army Deputy Head Zhang Junshe reinforced this theoryin an article in China Daily USA over the weekend. He directly tied China's desire for multiple aircraft carriers to fears of a "remilitarization" next door in Japan, which he says "already has two Hyuga-class [helicopter destroyers] which the Western media call "aircraft carriers in disguise." 

Roger Cliff, senior fellow with the Asia Security Initiative at the Atlantic Council, agrees that "four carriers would give China a real, albeit limited, blue water capability" to counter perceived threats from Japan, and to "project air power against lesser countries outside of the range of China's land-based aircraft."

Scenario No. 3: China as a partner for peace
The third theory for why China wants carriers sounds disturbing, but also potentially reassuring. Junshe noted that "having two or more aircraft carriers is normal for a regional or global power." What's more, because China is "one of the five permanent members of United Nations Security Council, it has to shoulder global responsibilities."

What kind of "responsibilities"? Citing the string of natural disasters that have struck Japan, the Philippines, and other countries in the Asia-Pacific region in recent years, Junshe pointed out: "U.S. aircraft carriers played a vital role in the rescue and relief operations. ... Aircraft carriers will allow China, too, to play such a role in the future."

Farther abroad, China is a major investor in Africa and has a vested interest in ensuring freedom of the seas, and safe transit of merchantmen in the Indian and Atlantic Oceans. In early 2010, three Chinese warships began working in conjunction with American and other warships, patrolling the Gulf of Aden to combat the scourge of Somali piracy. Cliff (the Atlantic Council representative) noted that "for missions like counterpiracy patrols off of Somalia, having a carrier around would be nice, because it can cover a lot more area and more targets than a surface combatant."

The upshot for investors
Whatever China's intentions for its aircraft carrier(s), "wariness" among the experts has already proved a boon for investors in U.S. defense contractors Boeing (NYSE: BA  ) , Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT  ) , and Huntington Ingalls (NYSE: HII  ) , which have enjoyed an upsurge in interest from regional buyers of their missiles, F-35 fighter jets, and warships, respectively. As China's carrier-building program gets under way, and attracts ever more attention from world media, expect that interest to continue and increase.

As for America, though, we have 104 years of naval air operations under our belt. I doubt we have any immediate need to worry about a country that's still figuring out how to land planes on an aircraft carrier safely. Building an aircraft carrier is one thing. Figuring out how to use it effectively is going to take a whole lot longer.


See? We can build aircraft carriers, too. USS Gerald R. Ford, at its drydock flooding. Photo: Wikimedia Commons

 

Psst! America has a secret weapon
Aircraft carriers are all well and good, but they're kind of 20th-century technology. A better idea to invest in might be the X-factor that U.S. News and World Report says "will drive the U.S. economy." Business Insider calls it "the growth force of our time." And in a special report titled "America's $2.89 Trillion Super Weapon Revealed," we'll tell you all about it -- and explain how to capitalize on this massive growth opportunity. Act now, because this is your shot to cash in before the fat cats on Wall Street beat you to the potentially life-changing profits. Click here now for instant access to this free report.


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  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 10:34 AM, jescobar63 wrote:

    I would say not to worry about how many aircraft carries they built remember they are made in China just like all the cheap products that Walmart sells. Cheap, cheap no good they will sink or rust out

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 10:46 AM, 168 wrote:

    Don't make mockery comment how can it will rust and sink if they are well taking care of ???? you are one of the guy make comment out of jealousy like pinoy .

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 10:48 AM, 168 wrote:

    What wrong if it is smaller in size ??? less maintenance cost and less injuries in time of war.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 10:54 AM, cosmosenfold wrote:

    Another foolish country wasting its wealth by overspending its mil;itary budget. that is what killed the soviet union and has destroyed the USA's economy. Carriers are just easily hit targets. Agood fleet of low drafts speedycargo/hospital ships would be a much better relief ships and bringers of good friendship.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 11:13 AM, kittyfrisco wrote:

    Why does China need a second aircraft carrier? when they don't even need a first one.

    China plans to challenge the United States Naval Power throughout the world, but first China must intimidate all of it's closest South China Seas neighbors. China has no intentions of promoting peace and tranquility in their part of the world, as was the case when the Earthquake hit Japan in 2011 and the typhoon that ravaged the Philippines last year.China is and always will be up to no good, soon the Chinese Navy will be patrolling the west coast of the United States as a show of force to be reckon with.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 11:24 AM, jerseyneil wrote:

    What the Chinese are saying, "Thank you America for paying for our military upgrades, including these ships!!! Now, you Yankees can leave the China Sea and Far East Asia and go home."

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 11:52 AM, Pantagon wrote:

    I applause Mr. Smith for such a good analysis. Why worry? We need China to share more world peace and world disaster problems. China has a long Pacific Coast line and a weak Naval Defense. Its assumed main threats are No. 1 Japan, No.2 USA, No. 3 Russia. No one can mess up the vast inland of China with its strong air defense, high speed rail and modern missiles. China has no history of aggression but had suffered bad aggression from Japan in WW2. Japan's current leaders are not taking humble lessons of WW2 history. That is giving China the best reasons to develop strong Navy to protect itself from the Pacific Islands surrounding China Coast. Why don't we assume Japan's new aggression on positioning to occupy more Pacific islands and arming with Naval and missile systems supported by the US. What are the purpose of Japan rebuilding its new military? It is wrong to assume that Japan need to create more defense jobs.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 11:53 AM, abicht627 wrote:

    The Chinese carrier is slightly bigger than one of the US NAvy's LHAs, Helo Assault Carrier. In the US Navy these carriers are able to carry a complete Marine Expeditionary Unit, essentially a mobile Marine Division which includes armor. Consider if China did the same, outfitted their carrier with troops, helicopters and armor.

    Justa consideration in the face of all making cracks about the Chinese. And consider the Chinese were inventing gun powder when the West's high technology was a sword and cross bow.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 12:17 PM, KUBLOTNIK wrote:

    china has been slow to expand the ideology of mao and marx, but as they get stronger they will start to throw their wieght around just like russia .they will start with the south china sea, taiwan,philippines,japan and s.korea. they will use proxies like n korea to keep things stirred up in asia. they don't care one whit about what we think . they are for using chinese power and for chinese people . you wait......when we are so bankrupt that we cannot pay our debt to china for the bonds they hold,and we have hollowed out our military so that it is nothing on the inside,just good looking on the outside, china is going to move. and we will have nothing to stop them.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 12:49 PM, iyke wrote:

    I see a new Arms race in East Asia, a region that has been a time bomb for quite sometime.

    I had always loved the way China conducts it's international politics but it seems to me there are some behind the scene individuals, pushing the government to do something different which could possibly lead to war with one of two of their neighbors ''perhaps'' with view to quicken their emergency as world leader.

    One thing all parties must remember is that it is only in James Bond movies that you could fight and win without a scratch.

    If China concentrate on building their economy and their people as they have been doing in the past 30 years they will definitely lead the world without military.

    Opportunities that brought them to this position would continue to present itself every now and then. West are constantly distracted with what is happening in other countries which could easily draw them into another war anytime.

    Every new empire introduce itself with a new system changer which ie create fear among rivals or convince them to align with the new power. However Arms and military might is an old system with no guarantee, including the fact that China is not the most advanced nation technologically at the moment.

    These and many more makes it even more difficult to create the kind of fear that could get others to surrender to China any time soon, rather, China's rivals the UNITED STATE and RUSSIA will be smiling to the bank since other Asian nations would attempt to equip themselves too.

    If the idea is to lure Japan into over spending like the U.S did to the soviet, i don't think it would work ie since the U.S. will be happy to supply more than they may even need to balance trade deficits.

    Strong economy through savings brought China to its current state, and can still take it to where it want to be, if only it can hold itself to continue in that path.

    WAR will only distract and possibly destroy all the hard works and scarifies made by the people's.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 12:54 PM, HallowithAlex wrote:

    Everything is dependent upon their intentions which really they only know, all others can do is speculate.

    What maybe the true concern, if they follow the foots steps of the U.S, China may start opening bases in other countries. If they really want to be a thorn in our side, all they have to do is start investing in Cuba!

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 12:56 PM, rw93003 wrote:

    History says that the reason for China building carriers under Scenario 3: "China as a partner for peace" is even less likely than the reason under Scenario 4: To defend the earth against an invasion of aquatic aliens from outer space."

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 12:59 PM, rhernz wrote:

    Don't put too much attention with the aircraft carrier its a diversionary tactics by China…..The thing thats bother me is the Subs that they have right now which has German technology…

    To sum it up that China will build as many as military hardware coz they have the manpower to do so…If Japan falls China will rule the ASIA…

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 1:08 PM, huytton wrote:

    It's China's aggression that makes Japan, Vietnam, the Phillipines, and Malaysia, etc. worry. The world would welcome China to have multiple carriers, like the US, France, Russia, and United Kingdom, if its intentions are good. So far they have not proven to be a peaceful power. It's recent unilateral declaration of air and sea jurisdictions based on fabricated claims is the cause of all these tensions in East China Sea and South China Sea.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 1:15 PM, calvin5wagner wrote:

    when we, (U.S.A.) totally lose the ability to project power, then we will be a prime target for stronger economies. it is happening now. it has to for the One World Govt. dream to come to pass. then america will just be another rotten apple in the barrel owned by the govt. of the world.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 1:38 PM, ilsm50 wrote:

    Wow China's war budget tripled since it began owning th US economy it is now about 25% the US'!

    The Kaiser had battleships! Did him no good

    China is dumb as the US, building a military industry complex that runs all kinds of sidelights, wants to be a growth industry with all kinds of Dr Strangelove scenarios to sell more of their wares.

    The mission of little carriers: raids like US did for 11 years over North Vietnam look how that worked!

    Fleet actions, like US plans for are achaic!

    Carriers cannot operate close to land based anti ship capacity, nor in areas where the targets have jets fighters.

    India has two aircraft carriers, one recapitalized Ukraine like the PLA Navy and one former Royal Navy. Kindia has two more in advanced build.

    Unlike China, India has airplanes to fly off the carriers. China as yet has no airplane.

    Let Japan build a couple!

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 1:45 PM, luckyagain wrote:

    Lets pretend to be Chinese for a moment. Look around and what do you see? The US has bases in South Korea, Japan, etc. Even Vietnam prefers the US over China.

    Do you see a lot of Chinese bases surrounding the US? Does China have troops stationed in Mexico and Canada? Does the Chinese have an aircraft carrier group along California, Oregon or Washington state? Does China have ships circling Hawaii?

    I am not saying that the US really wants a war with China or that China really wants a war with the US. Instead, both countries can accidentally get into a military confrontation. Care needs to be taken about putting naval ships too close to each other because mistakes can be made and people can die.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 2:18 PM, junktex wrote:

    Aircraft carriers are obsolete as jet fighters may well be soon.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 2:27 PM, urbanwarrior2 wrote:

    Pantagon , very well said, china need to take care of its self, Do you see a lot of Chinese bases surrounding the US? Does China have troops stationed in Mexico and Canada? Does the Chinese have an aircraft carrier group along California, Oregon or Washington state? Does China have ships circling Hawaii?

    I am not saying that the US really wants a war with China or that China really wants a war with the US. Instead, both countries can accidentally get into a military confrontation. Care needs to be taken about putting naval ships too close to each other because mistakes can be made and people can die. we need to team up with china, everything is made there why not. well said luckyagain

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 2:38 PM, IndVoter008 wrote:

    The latest Communist Chinese military bravado in Asian waters made possible by PNTR Communist China ratified by the U.S. Congress in 2000 at the insistence of Corporate America via their lobbying arm the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. PNTR CC is TREASON plain and simple and everyone involved in its ratification should be jailed. PNTR CC not only funded the growth of the Chinese military and space program it also provided the technology and manufacturing know-how and to boot the training of Communist Chinese engineers and technicians.

    For anyone not familiar with PNTR CC read up on the asinine reasons given by the U.S. Congress for its ratification.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 2:43 PM, BlueMystery wrote:

    I see you changed the untrue "fact" flippantly stated by the picture that China is our biggest debt holder ... The American people themselves are by far the biggest holder of US government IOU's ...

    Why else do you think Congress is trying to kill Social Security without giving back money paid in by young Americans; Debt reduction anyone?

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 2:52 PM, ellaerdos wrote:

    The Chinese are not just building carriers. They are revamping their Army, building new armored vehicles, aircraft, icebreakers, subs, space platforms. They are establishing themselves in Africa, Asia and South America, everywhere they can get a foothold. They are have new trading routes along the Northwest Passage and into the Persian Gulf. Get used to seeing them on the evening news because they've been asleep for about 400 years and as a little girl once said in the movies "theeeere back!"

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:03 PM, 1JadeStrefon wrote:

    First of all, that Chinese propaganda about a supposedly "declining" U.S. is just that - BS. By 2020, the U.S. will be the world's top oil producer, ahead of even Saudi Arabia. While the Chinese economy is slowing as a matter of necessity (with over 7%, however, still constituting very strong growth) the U.S. economy is also again growing at a robust rate, with GDP expanding at over 4% in the last quarter of 2013.

    Bottom line, while China is a large developing country, and may again have the world's largest economy at some point, it is no emerging superpower. From 1500, until it lost the title to the U.S. in 1890, China had the world's largest economy. But, so what? That didn't keep it from being continuously ripped apart and subjugated throughout that period by smaller countries, did it? For example, although Britain had a GDP only one-quarter as large as China's, Britain invaded and conquered China, then ruled it for decades.

    The point is, since China's 1.5 Billion citizens will remain dirt poor for the forseeable future when compared with the U.S.'s 310 Million citizens, then it is very important to remember that China is not comparable to either the U.S. or Germany in the early 20th century. And for the Chinese to now believe otherwise - as some, it seems, are tempted to - is to invite grave miscalculation on their part.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:08 PM, LEVINE wrote:

    Side-by-side photo of the Liaoning v Ford is deceptive and dishonest: Ford is twice the size of the Liaoning. Editor Smith is dishonest: China didn't build the Liaoning; it's a remodel job of salvaged USSR Varyard(sic). Built over 30 years ago, the Varyard is smaller than even the Kittyhawk class, has no catapult, designed as VTOL carrier. China's 2nd carrier is similar: remodel of a salvaged Australian carrier. Smith is war monger for the Military Industrial Complex, purveyor of fear, sower of death and destruction.

    Smith is mercenary writer.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:18 PM, audsdad wrote:

    China is decades away from USA Military technology. The new US CVNX stealth class and efficiencies of war will not be overwhelmed for many years/decades by anyone. China, India, Russia. They all have light years to catch up. Remember, they are building on stolen technology from USA but missing a mother load of classified tech. No contest

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:19 PM, audsdad wrote:

    USA will sink all ships for a long time...........

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:22 PM, ellaerdos wrote:

    Seems that everybody in the world thinks we're a declining superpower. I like to know what pundit came up with that; the Kaiser, Hitler, Tojo, Stalin or that fat little Italian whose name I can't spell? Maybe it was Mr Hussain or the other guy, Ben Laden.

    Look around you people, talk to your returning soldiers. The very poorest American has more security and means to opportunity then the middle class does in most of the world. They hate us but they don't refuse visa's to come here and study.

    We are strong, we are the hope of the world.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:27 PM, audsdad wrote:

    No competition until maybe 2060-2070. By then the gold standard and USA Dollar will b

    e re-invented and maintain dominance.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:30 PM, ellaerdos wrote:

    Rich Smith likes to stir the you know what.

    Rich, its not the size of your carrier that counts, its what you do with it.

    :)

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:31 PM, audsdad wrote:

    Chinese will become Americans by choice instead of war, I predict some day off in this generations distance! America is a country of all nations, of all people, people looking for freedom, justice and Liberty.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:32 PM, Marco97225 wrote:

    If the Chinese built it is will fall apart in a week or all of the sailors will get lead poisoning within a month.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:37 PM, audsdad wrote:

    An American Air Craft Carrier is escorted by minimum 4 Destroyers, 4 Cruisers, 2-6 frigates, all, with ballistic missiles. (A Cruiser carries 90 missles that can all be nuclear armed) oilers/fuel, maritime supply. etc etc.

    For China to boast an air craft carrier, they will need a lot of support to back it up. A Nimitz Class carrier consumes a million gallons of fuel a day for it's support fleet alone even though the carrier itself is nuclear fueled with a stone that last 13 years.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:41 PM, cordycep wrote:

    Common carrier are sitting duck....spend more on space.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 3:47 PM, locklear2013 wrote:

    to quote a pc game,"peace through power" and let the fallout universe start lol

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 4:11 PM, cliftont wrote:

    I do agree with the author, but something more about China. China had been a dominating power in this world for thousands of years. In Ming Dynasty Its navy forces had been very strong but it didn't use its power to bully its neighbors or to seize others' land or treasures (China' navy general Zheng He sailed to Africa a century before Clumbus's voyage of discovery). Instead, China has been bullied in its recent history by Britain, France, Russia and other western powers and by Japan in the east. It has lost a large part of its territory on land and on the sea to Russia and Japan. When the Second World War ended, based on Potsdam Decalaration signed by American president Truman, British Prime Minister Churchill, and later joint by Stalin, Liu Qiu Island (the present Okinawa) and Diaoyu Island Group (Senkaku) should be returned to China but US gave the Liu Qiu and Diao Yu Island Group to Japan. Taiwan still does not come back to China. China's humiliation remains and hurts still. China has the legitimate right to take back its territory its ancestors had managed for centuries and international law permits it to do so. If China's legitimate right has been ignored and checked jontly by others and if China's protection of its interests is even regarded as a new expansionist (because of its economy and because of its possible conflicts with others or because of its political system), and then in this world China can be forced to believe that the world has no justice and morality but power and bully.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 5:41 PM, JohanStrauss wrote:

    Great. Link to the super-secret weapon goes to a spam site. Thanks, Motley Fool.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 6:26 PM, seeker51 wrote:

    they are good enough to sink to the bottom of the sea if they keep messing around japan.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 6:43 PM, HarMegiddo wrote:

    :facepalm: Observe how the chinese propaganda swarm rushes in. lol

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 8:01 PM, mig46 wrote:

    Have we forgot that we have been down the same road with the USSR. They are a immerging by our own doing, we and the rest of the world keep spending money there. Someone said that Vietnam was worried. Do you have have any idea how much money China spends in that part of the world. Beater look it up.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 8:43 PM, StevenP wrote:

    "And while some of these scenarios might worry some people, when viewed in the most positive light, each scenario also offers us reasons to be optimistic, and to welcome China's aircraft-carrying ambitions."

    Are you out of your mind? What has THE PRC done lately to show that it has the best intention? Proclaiming 80% of South China Sea? Making fishermen of its neighbors top register and seel permission to fish in its own 200 nautical miles, well within its EEZ? Asserted an Air "Defensive Zone" well within internal water and within Japan's and S. Korea's EEZ?

    The reverse should be said and that one should view China's intention under the worst case scenario. It neither wants to nor willing to negotiate with its neighbors over territorial disputes because internal law doesn't permit it's greed and claims. It also does not want to submit itself under the UN tribunal to resolve the issue also because international doesn't support its claims. Further, it intends to use military power to make claims to these territories. Having been an international attorney, I would expect the authors knows about the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS). Perhaps, the author is biased toward China because of his investments or those of his constituents.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 8:57 PM, PsiKick wrote:

    One important thing a Chinese carrier means is they don't think they are sitting ducks or more specifically they must not think ours are. If they thought they had the capability to destroy our carriers easily they wouldn't build one of their own. I feel a little better about their ability to protect themselves now.

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 9:09 PM, ghelmz21 wrote:

    It's always reported that the Chinese bring on a new coal fired electricity plant every week so I guess they can do the same with Aircraft Carriers. As we plunge further into decline with Obama leading the charge China will become the new superpower probably within 25 years unless of course we quicken our pace to help their cause!

  • Report this Comment On January 26, 2014, at 10:06 PM, Kapri25 wrote:

    Let us be honest...no one in the world has an aircraft carrier like ours. Not a single nation owns and operates the type that we have. Whether or not China or any other country builds their own it is not just the ship itself that is all important. Technology and the aircraft plays a major role in how our carrier system works. If any country can not meet our standards in these areas than all these other aircraft carriers is nothing but a floating target for us here in the U.S.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 12:48 AM, ddcmall wrote:

    And Tim Cook will take Apple's side.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 12:56 AM, constantine2007 wrote:

    Let's look at the "scenarios" presented. Number two is the projection of Chinese power against the "threats" of Japan and the Phillipines. I am trying to resist laughing but does anyone think that China in 2014 is actually worried about banzai charges on their shores from Japanese Imperial Marines? The terror presented from the awesome naval power of the Phillipines is only overshadowed by the nightmare of Samsung products from South Korea being parachuted over the Chinese mainland. Thankfully, they have nuclear weapons for that prospect.

    Scenario number three I cannot even refrain from laughing at. "Partner for peace?

    Scenario one is the most logical and it is a long term outlook when facing a United States that is overstretched and tired with a political class that would like very much to draw down on defense and divert dwindling resources to entitlements.

    China is thinking ahead as opposed to a United States that simply is no longer thinking.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 2:22 AM, Velthis wrote:

    The issue with China's ascension is in no way trivial, especially when consideration is made for the thug like politicians running the country. China has ascended to the status of richest country in the world by the rest of the world acceding industry to China. I would guess half to 3/4 of the stuff we have on us is made in China. We the "rest of the world" is responsible to fueling the China thugs. With the USA barely meeting it's debt repayment schedules and Obama having to twisted congress' arm to get extensions, what is really needed is a take back of American industry. Stop going to China to make your products, it may be cheaper, but it's hurting the economy and I applaud Apple for bringing it back to be proudly "made in the USA". All the American company's need to take this lead and empower America to take back the wealth it is providing China.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 2:32 AM, latteguy wrote:

    China is still decades behind the US in terms of military technology and strategy. They are just starting to understand and incorporate joint command/forces, something the US have perfected as seen from the first Gulf War. Currently, they aren't a threat to us. However, years down the road (40-50 years), this might change. I believe a small combination of all three scenarios is the goal of China. China have invested a lot of money in Africa and might want to play protect it. Africa can be unstable at times and with aircraft carriers, they can "intervene" if necessary similar to what Western nations would do. They also want to be a regional power to protect themselves from "aggressors". The Chinese treat the current geography as a reminiscence of Imperialism. They believe the disputed islands and seas would taken away from them and redistributed without their say, which occurred in multiple regions post WWII. The Chinese views their acts as defending Chinese territories taken away from them and didn't have the military instrument of power to say otherwise. Well, now they are building that IOP to have their say. Finally, the eventual goal is Scenario 3, be a global superpower. Maybe its not to fight the US or invade (which will be difficult in the future), but to give other developing nations another choice of allies. Not all developing nations follow Western ideals or values, but usually, to get support, they have to agree to certain rules. With China, the nations don't have follow these ideals/rules which is contrary to their beliefs.

    The Chinese might arming up, but is no match for the US, but they want to rise to the superpower status and be a counterbalance.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 3:47 AM, freedem wrote:

    Not just china but if any country start spending billions if there military that means ALWAYS !!! ATTENTION !!! BE CAREFULL !!! It's not a joke .There is ALWAYS something behind this government's mind if they spend that much for military all of a sudden and it is for sure not for making peace with another country. No fly zone and no fishing zone etc. support no peace making either but it's all a preparation for war and making enemy's for them self. China has also way to many males and not enough females. A war would help to minimize male population and therefore over population all together.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 9:50 AM, lm1b2 wrote:

    We are discussing "Communist China" right?Lets see we supported Chang Kai Shrek and have sworn to protect Formosa,fought against them in the Korean War, a war with no peace treaty,and they supplied the North Vietnam with military supplies during the Vietnam War ! They threaten us,and there neighbors all the time,and they have Nuclear Capabilities with the ability to deliver them.Now what do you think,should we worry about Communist China having more Nuclear Air Craft Carriers people?

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 10:18 AM, bobbyjoe56r wrote:

    China may get another aircraft carrier. But not to worry, the US has who knows how many nuclear subs that will track their every move day after day after day.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 5:02 PM, fingerlakes54 wrote:

    Large carriers are impressive--but still large targets. For 3 or 4 years I have asked the tough question no one wants to answer. That being---'Just how do you rescue 6000 sailors from shark infested waters? If a carrier is sunk--the other ships in the battle group will most likely be hit also. It would be a war time situation and rescue ships would also be fired at too. That's a lot of lives---yet we continue the insanity of large surface warships. Sub surface warships and hundreds of small boats with missiles seem to be a good solution. Projecting power is more or less a peace time tactic to calm a potential war. Once total war starts it's anyone's guess. In 1946 at Bikini--about 80 warships were sunk or heavily damaged with one then later a second nuclear bomb. So much for big fleets of big expensive ships.

  • Report this Comment On January 27, 2014, at 9:52 PM, jamblish wrote:

    Aircraft carriers are a 1940's technology. Supercarriers are merely the 1970's upgrade of the same. If I had a spare aircraft carrier to sell I would schedule a trip to China since they have more cash than brains. In the modern seas inhabited by attack subs, sea skimming cruise missiles and aircraft the aircraft carrier is merely a big expensive target. Even the aircraft carried aboard these carriers are on the verge of being replaced by smart stealthy armed drones. The replacement for supercarriers maybe much smaller stealthy drone motherships capable of arming, launching and recovering drones.

  • Report this Comment On July 13, 2014, at 3:59 PM, Mike2222 wrote:

    Aircraft carriers maybe 1940's technology, but still very relevant today as well as the foreseeable future.

    Unless we have a Starship to mobilize our troops into battle; The aircraft carrier is our on;y means to project our power to the enemy without having to fight on our home turf. Remember...there is no substitute for manpower for occupying captured positions.

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