[Article/Guancha.com Wang Shichun] On January 27, 2021, the U.S. Congressional Research Service released its annual routine report “Modernization of China’s Navy: Impact on the Capacity of the U.S. Navy”, focusing on the modernization process of the Chinese Navy.
The report is repeated, saying that the Chinese navy has been regarded as a “significant challenge for the U.S. Navy to achieve and maintain its control over the western Pacific Ocean”, and once again exaggerates “China’s threat theory” such as “the Chinese navy is the world’s largest fleet” and “the Chinese navy has regional resistance capabilities”.
Compared with last year’s report, this year’s report has changed slightly. First of all, the United States finally admitted that China’s first domestic aircraft carrier Shandong is numbered 002, not 001A.
The report also claimed that the PLA was building a new aircraft carrier “003”, with a displacement of 100,000 tons. At the same time, China has tried to develop 100,000 tons of nuclear-powered electromagnetic aircraft carrier “004”.
The report exaggerated that China has gained advantages in the South China Sea and the western Pacific Ocean, and the U.S. Navy needs to deal with the Chinese navy by developing technology, changing fleet structure, improving combat readiness and developing new technology and weapons.
As an annual routine report issued to members of the U.S. Senate, the report is quite popular in nature.
The content of the report is mostly conclusions, so that U.S. senators can have a more intuitive understanding of the development of the Chinese navy.
Although the report is relatively simple, it also reflects the U.S. military’s understanding of the development of China’s navy.
The report said that in an era of a new round of great power competition, China’s military modernization efforts, including naval modernization efforts, have become the primary focus of U.S. defense planning and budget.
Since the early to mid-1990s, the Chinese navy has become a powerful military force in China’s offshore areas after more than 25 years of steady modernization.
More and more military operations will be carried out in more distant waters, including the western Pacific Ocean, the Indian Ocean, the Indian Ocean and the wider sea around Europe.
The modernization of the Chinese navy includes not only the construction of ships, fighters and other weapons, but also improvements in maintenance, logistics, personnel quality, education and training, and exercises.
The report focuses on several platforms that the PLA is developing, including aircraft carriers, surface ships, underwater ships, amphibious attack ships and other projects.
As China takes the form of joint operations to deal with maritime conflicts, the report focuses on the rocket army’s platform in addition to introducing the Chinese naval combat platform.
The report believes that the PLA has deployed two anti-ship ballistic missiles – Dongfeng-21D and Dongfeng-26.
The report mentions that the Dongfeng-21 and Dongfeng-26 anti-ship ballistic missiles successfully hit a mobile target ship south of the Xisha Islands in a live-fire test exercise last August.
China is also developing hypersonic glider anti-ship missiles, which may make it more difficult for China’s anti-ship ballistic missiles to intercept.
Compared with last year’s report, this year’s report has changed slightly.
First of all, the United States finally recognized that China’s first domestic aircraft carrier “Shandong” ship number was 002, after that in 2020, the U.S. military thought that the “Shandong” ship was still numbered “001A”.
Although the number of Shandong ship is clear, in the development of China’s new aircraft carrier, the report claims that the displacement of the conventional power new aircraft carrier “003” being manufactured by the People’s Liberation Army was previously estimated to be about 80,000 tons, but the latest satellite map shows that the displacement of 003 reaches 100,000 tons, and it will carry F. Five generations of carrier-based aircraft developed by C-31 and J-20.
At the same time, China “tried to develop” 100,000 tons of nuclear-powered electromagnetic catapult aircraft carrier “004”, but this development has been suspended due to “economic reasons”.
In addition to aircraft carriers, the report also claims that the PLA is developing Type 076 amphibious attack ships, perhaps equipped with catapults.
On the PLA’s development goals, the report continues to exaggerate that the PLA is “building the world’s largest fleet”.
The report states that the PLA has about 350 warships and submarines, including more than 130 major surface combat ships. By contrast, the U.S. Navy has about 293 ships in combat.”
Despite great achievements, although the Chinese navy currently has certain limitations and weaknesses.
These shortcomings include insufficient anti-submarine capabilities, limited long-range intelligence acquisition capabilities, insufficient joint combat capabilities, insufficient personnel quality, lack of actual combat experience and operational experience, but China is trying to overcome these shortcomings.
Regarding the purpose of modernizing China’s naval forces, the report believes that the primary purpose is to deal with potential conflicts in the Taiwan Strait, become part of China’s anti-intervention/regional rejection (A2/AD) forces
and prevent the United States from interfering in potential conflicts in the Taiwan Strait or other offshore areas of China.
Other purposes include: achieving control over the offshore areas of China, especially the South China Sea region; strengthening surveillance of foreign military activities in the exclusive maritime economic zone;
safeguarding China’s maritime lines, especially those connecting China with the Persian Gulf; replacing the influence of the United States in the western Pacific region; and consolidating China The status of the country as a regional dominant power and a major power in the world.
The U.S. Navy has taken a series of actions in recent years to combat the modernization of the Chinese navy. The U.S. Navy transfers most of its troops to the Pacific region for deployment;
sends the most powerful new ships and fighters and the best soldiers to the Pacific Ocean; maintains or increases the general presence in the Indo-Pacific region, operations, training and exercises, and cooperates with Indo-Pacific allies and other navies; expands the size of the U.S. Navy; launches
add or accelerate the development of new military technology and equip many projects of new ships, aircraft, unmanned ships and weapons; start to study new operational concepts to fight against China, etc.