New UUVs: China’s Plan to ‘Attack from the Sea Floor’

The Achilles Heel of the Chinese Navy has long been undersea warfare. The Middle Kingdom’s nuclear submarines are considered noisy, with their “boomers” [SSBNs] only recently taking up what might loosely be considered an actual “deterrent patrol.” The diesel force was quite reliant on the imported Kilo-class from Russia until the last decade. Even if China could field quiet submarines with proficient crews, the geography is not very conducive to the extensive operation of submarines given the shallow bathymetry off of most of China’s coastal regions. The PLA Navy also lacks experience…

Holding Back China’s Conquest of the South China Sea

Carefully crafted actions on the part of nations respecting international law may be the solution for countering China’s maritime territory grab in the South China Sea. These actions could prevent the Middle Kingdom from bullying its way into areas it claims unilaterally, or they might be the key to preventing the region from erupting into armed conflict. These issues were the focus of discussion in a Tuesday panel at WEST 2020, the conference and exposition in San Diego March 2-3 co-sponsored by AFCEA International and USNI. A collection of warfighters…

Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam tops Race 9 >> Scuttlebutt Sailing News

(March 15, 2020; Day 5) – Ha Long Bay, Viet Nam has claimed its second win of the Clipper 2019-20 Round the World Yacht Race after yesterday crossing the 750nm Race 9 finishing line at 20.07.22 UTC in first place ahead of competitors Punta del Este and Visit Sanya, China which finished in second and third place respectively. “The team are feeling good and rightly so they really got stuck in from the get go, and a big thanks for their patience with me – it was nerve wracking stuff,”…

William Dar and our food insecurity

William Dar and our food insecurity The other day, I dropped by the office of William Dar, the Secretary of Agriculture, to inquire about how he is facing his problem which is actually this country’s most serious—our food insecurity. The man is well-prepared academically and has had a lot of experience in farm management; and most important, he has vision. But I feel sorry for him for in a way, because he is almost programmed to fail. The tremendous problems that he faces are accretions of leadership failure and…

Chinese military has built second assault ship, report says

The Chinese military is reportedly on the brink of completing its development of a second Type 075 since completing its first in September. The launch of a second Type 075 could play a role in China annexing Taiwan, Asia Times reported. It’s hull and flight deck are already complete, bringing the completion of the Type 075 much closer than anticipated. A recent report says it has already built in Hudong Zhonghua shipyard in Shanghai and will soon be launched. China has acquired and learned new shipbuilding technologies believed to play…

Whither the United States in the Indo-Pacific?

Author: J Stapleton Roy, Wilson Center The US approach to the Indo-Pacific is a work in progress. Over the past three years, the Trump administration has outlined a strategic concept that links the Indian Ocean region with the Asia Pacific. Expanding the policy focus in this fashion not only emphasises the importance of the Indian Ocean region, but brings India into the administration’s policy framework in which China is seen as the principal strategic competitor of the United States. Yet, President Donald Trump’s freewheeling refusal to be bound within this…

Health minister to “suggest” closing bars, nightclubs

Thai Prime Minister Prayut Chan-O-cha announced he has rejected, for the time being, the suggestion from Public Health Minister Anutin Charnvirakul to temporarily close the country’s massive nightlife industry. Anutin Charnvirakul said yesterday the suggestion was one of several measures he and the Ministry of Public Health would bring up with the PM tomorrow. But as social media exploded, fiercely divided both for and against the move, Prayut addressed reporters saying he did “not feel it [is] needed at this time.” But he added the situation will be reassessed at…