Author: Brent M. Eastwood

New Weapon Aims to Be a Ship Killer Against the Chinese Navy: China has more warships than the United States, and its navy has become more technologically advanced and lethal over the last two decades. The U.S. military is looking at ways it can fatally strike China’s surface fleet including aircraft carrier strike groups that protect China’s strategic interests in Taiwan Strait and other areas of the Indo-Pacific. Due to this need, the Americans have come up with a novel approach to anti-ship aerial warfare by converting an existing bomb into a killer of Chinese vessels. Take a JDAM and…

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What if the United States lost an aircraft carrier to China in a critical naval battle? This would be a shot heard around the world and instill panic in the White House, Pentagon, Congress, and the general public. China has numerous ways it could take out a carrier: using carrier killing missiles, hypersonic missiles, conventional stand-off missiles from airplanes, or torpedoes and cruise missiles from submarines, including a new ship-launched “hybrid missile-torpedo.” Below, let us explore some of these concepts which also serves as a defacto primer showing how lethal China’s military has become over the last several decades: DF-21D…

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Russia has no nuclear-powered aircraft carriers: why? The Soviet Union was known for getting ahead of its skis while planning ambitious weapons procurement plans. Although it aspired to have a fleet of nuclear-powered carriers, the Soviet navy failed to live up to its promises. A nuclear supercarrier could have allowed the Kremlin to project power overseas beyond its region. The Ulyanovsk flat-top was going to be the fulfillment of those dreams. It would have been a huge vessel – bigger and heavier with more room for aircraft than ever before. Let’s examine why the Soviets never progressed with its nuclear-powered carrier.…

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Is it a battleship or a cruiser? Put them both together and meet the Russian Navy’s combo “battlecruiser.” The Soviet-era Kirov-class comprises the largest surface fleet vessels in the Russian Navy aside from the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier. Along with their size, they are chock full of armaments.  Pyotr Velikiy and Admiral Nakhimov battlecruisers carry 20 anti-ship missiles, numerous surface-to-air missiles, anti-aircraft guns, and even helicopters. The ships are old (from the 1980s), but they are nuclear-powered. The Kirov-class Somehow Made It to the Modern Era  Originally, they were designed to take on U.S. aircraft carriers and eliminate the escort…

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Why doesn’t Russia care about aircraft carriers? Should Russia maintain its strategic focus on land warfare, or should it allocate more resources to its navy? It may not be able to do both at once. Russian submarines are strong, but Moscow’s surface fleet is less so. Its navy lacks a functioning aircraft carrier. Its best guided-missile frigate and the pride of its navy, the Moskva, was sunk, a casualty of the Russo-Ukraine war. That conflict has devoured Russia’s tanks and armored personnel carriers, and Russia’s army is now running out of ammunition – it is low on precision-guided missiles and even…

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The U.S. Navy’s next-generation Zumwalt-class destroyers just look cool. They are loaded with missiles and advanced guns. They have radar-evading stealth characteristics. And this is one of the early classes of all-electric ships.  Now the Zumwalts will equip even more deadly weaponry – enough to make the destroyer one of the world’s most lethal vessels. Indeed, the Zumwalt class will add a hypersonic weapon to its arsenal. Conventional Prompt Strike (CPS) hypersonic missiles will someday be launched from the destroyers. Let’s take a look at what that means. Hypersonics? Oh, What a Feeling The CPS, like other hypersonics, will speed…

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DF-17: What You Need To Know – When it comes to conventional aircraft carrier killing missiles that could be launched from China, the U.S. Navy has protection. Carrier escorts in a battle group would have the AEGIS combat system to spot incoming bogeys and launch missile interceptors for self-defense. The carriers themselves are guarded by anti-missile interceptors too. But what about enemy MACH 5-plus hypersonic missiles? The Chinese have a mobile missile launcher that can fire a missile with a hypersonic glide vehicle that could evade American defenses. Called the DF-17, China has said it could hit a “moving target.” Latest…

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U.S. Navy brass and sailors aboard the new USS Gerald R. Ford supercarrier are enthused. The carrier just passed an important milestone. The Gerald R. Ford was certified “green” on the Combat Systems Operational Readiness Exercise (CSORE), the Department of Defense said on August 4. This evaluation determines how well the ship’s combat systems and its personnel react to dangers from a notional enemy. This exercise tested the ability to take out threats from the air, whether from manned or unmanned aircraft, or drone ships on the water.  Weapons Working to Full Capacity The ship’s Close-In Weapons System (CIWS) and…

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It used to be U.S. military policy to prepare to face war on two fronts – one in the Middle East and one in East Asia likely against North Korea as the Hermit Kingdom was seen as the riskiest flashpoint before 9/11. Now the resurgence of China and its threat to Taiwan, plus Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, have brought the two-front war closer to reality. Is the United States prepared for simultaneous contingencies in Europe and the Indo-Pacific? Taiwan Crisis Competes for Full Attention It is clear China is belligerent via its surrounding of Taiwan. Its Navy is conducting live…

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If conflict between China and Taiwan ever arises, Taipei hopes that a revamped missile program will help it strike back at a far more powerful aggressor.  Taiwan has high hopes for its Hsiung Sheng land-attack missile. The device can reach the mainland to hit Chinese command-and-control centers and supply depots. It could also pepper airfields to disable runways. In addition, the Sky Bow III surface-to-air missile can target enemy cruise missiles and drones and knock them out of the sky. Another system can destroy ships. These missiles are part of an $8 billion-to-$9 billion, five-year plan the Taiwanese government appropriated…

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