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news & opinion with no titillating non-news from the major non-news channels.


I am: progressive, not a wild-eyed Progressive; liberal, but shun liberals and Liberals; conservative, but some Conservatives worry me; absolutely NOT a libertarian. I am: an idealist, but no utopian; a pragmatist, but no Machiavellian. I am a realist who dreams.


I welcome all opinions.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

War with China:
   US reorgs, builds up Pacific capability

(update 5:18pm - some specifics from an AFP report)

Bill Gertz, Washington Times, reports on US military plans to beef up US forces in the Pacific, directly in response to the growing concern of the Chinese threat.

he Pentagon is engaged in an extensive buildup of military forces in Asia as part of a covert strategy to strengthen and position U.S. and allied forces to deter - or defeat - China.

The buildup includes changes in deployments of aircraft-carrier battle groups, the conversion of nuclear-missile submarines and the regular dispatch of bombers to areas close to targets in China,

... include large-scale military maneuvers, increased military alliances and training with Asian allies, the transfer of special-operations commando forces to Asia and new requirements for military personnel to learn Chinese.

Highlights are:

- the buildup of the island of Guam where "A total of $5 billion is being spent to improve the U.S. territory for ships, submarines and bombers."
- transforming carrier operations to double the number of carriers that can be battle ready on short notice, from 2 battle groups to 4
- deploy attack submarines to Guam
- deploy 2 to 4 more strategic missile submarines, each with 150 cruise missiles
- deploy the 1st Special Ops Group to Japan
- add a carrier battle group to the Pacific (the sixth in the Pacific)
- shift 60% of submarine forces to the Pacific and Asia (52 attack submarines)
- base B-1 and B-2 bombers at Guam
- dispatch Army's I Corps HQ from Fort Lewis, WA to Japan
- relocate Marines' HQ at Okinawa to Guam to better protect it from a decapitating missile attack from North Korea or China (8000 Marines)
- development of systems to counter Chinese space-borne threats
- increased war planning and Pacific-based exercises
- develop Chinese language skills

All branches of the U.S. military also have been conducting secret war games that use China as an adversary. The war games have been kept secret to avoid alerting the Chinese.

Officially, the branches are told to conduct exercises at higher rates than they did in the past and to consider a range of adversaries, including China. The true purpose, however, is to be prepared to respond to a Chinese military move against Taiwan, an attempt by China to seize oil-rich territory in Russia or Southeast Asia, or to control strategic sea lanes from the Middle East to Asia, defense officials said.


The Pentagon also has directed the military to develop Chinese-language skills and to have a cadre of Chinese speakers available if the military needs to "surge" its ability to communicate in the language. The requirement was couched in terms of learning several other languages as priorities, as well, including Farsi and Central Asian languages.


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