China's Anniversary Parade Reveals New Weapons
That Will Influence U.S. Strategies|
By Moon Of Alabama
October 02, 2019 "Information
Clearing House" - The
People's Republic of China held a
great parade (3h video,
shorter version with comments) to celebrate the
70th anniversary of its founding. Some interesting
new weapons were on display that are of strategic
China has, like Russia and Iran, used the decades
the U.S. military wasted with counter insurgency in
Iraq and Afghanistan to build strength where the
U.S. military has weaknesses. Those weaknesses are
most visible in the Navy:
New classes of quiet diesel submarines and new
developments in mine and torpedo technology make
operations close to tense coastlines far more
dangerous today than in the past. As a result,
U.S. aircraft carriers are no longer immune from
risk when entering waters within range of enemy
More serious still is the deployment of
Russian and Chinese area denial systems, like
the so-called carrier killer DF-21 antiship
missile developed in the last decade by China.
Its range of over 1,000 miles far outstrips the
range of any warplane on U.S. flight decks
today. Sailing a U.S. carrier strike force
through the Taiwan Strait these days—in a show
of support for pro-democracy forces in Hong
Kong, for instance—would risk catastrophe.
Iran does not yet possess anything as
sophisticated as China’s DF-21. However, its
domestically produced Noor antiship missile
(itself a reverse-engineered rip-off of an
earlier Chinese cruise missile) is dangerous at
over 100 miles. [...] The combination of these
missiles and Iran’s fleet of fast and cheap
patrol boats has been enough to keep the USS
Lincoln out of the Persian Gulf as tensions
between Iran and the United States increased
The carrier killer DF-21 is no longer China's top
weapon. It is a ballistic missile and a U.S. carrier
group may be able to use its missile defenses to
take it down. China used the last years to exceed
reports of today's parade:
One closely-watched weapon unveiled Tuesday was
the Dongfeng-17, a glider capable of carrying a
nuclear warhead. Foreign analysts say is
designed to maneuver at high speed to evade
Another missile displayed, the Dongfeng-41,
is believed to have a range of up to 15,000
kilometers (9,400 miles), which would make it
world’s longest-range military missile. Analysts
say it may be able to carry as many as 10
warheads to hit separate targets.
Here are some screenshots from the parade video.
The DF-17 is a road mobile system. Its first
stage is a solid fuel missile. The second stage is
the hypersonic glider which can fly beyond mach 5
and is maneuverable. This is another aircraft
carrier killer against which the U.S. has absolutely
The DF-41 is a road mobile beast. The 8 axle
vehicle can transport, erect and launch the missile.
The DF-41 is supposedly a solid fuel missile. That
means that it only requires a very short time to
deploy and launch. It will be difficult to interdict
while it is still on the ground. There were a total
of 16 of these monsters in the parade.
There were other systems of interests.
This seems to be a communication relay drone. It
can be used to communicate with, and steer, another
drone from the ground even when the second one is
over the horizon looking for U.S. ships. It makes
Chinese drones independent of satellite
The HSU-001s are also drones but they do not fly
but dive. These are likely to be used as
reconnaissance vehicle against U.S. submarines and
ships. They could also be useful for secretly mining
an enemy harbor.
This unmanned thingy is interesting. It looks
fast and stealthy and has two liquid fueled engines.
While it has an undercarriage the two suspension
lugs on its top insinuate that it can be launched
from another plane. It looks fast and stealthy but
is confusing. Is it a bomber that returns to an
airport? It looks a bit too flimsy for that. Is the
thing itself a "suicide drone" i.e. the warhead that
hits the target? Why then does it need an
undercarriage? It might be for reconnaissance but it
has no visible optic systems.
This is a well sized unmanned and stealthy drone
that can be used as a bomber or to launch stand-off
missiles. The one system shown may be a mock up but
that means that something like it is in the works
and will come.
Next to several thousand marching soldiers there
a number of upgraded tanks, missile systems, shore
launched anti-ship missiles and lots of drones.
China's equivalent of the Russian S-300 was on
display and several large and very modern early
warning radars. There were also dozens of mid-range
missile that are, in the case of a conflict,
probably supposed to end the U.S. base on Guam.
Nearly all the systems shown were
road-mobile. That means that China can
easily deploy even the big ones to its
islands and reefs in the South China
Sea. During a crisis or conflict the
U.S. Navy would have to avoid the whole
area or prepare for a very bad day.
In 2001 then President George W. Bush said the
U.S. would do "whatever it takes" to defend Taiwan
should China insist on a forced reunion. In 2006 the
U.S. operation plan on how to do that was
"The Pacific command developed a new `strategic
concept' for the Taiwan contingency in December
2002, and an updated plan was produced in July
2003. Last year, based upon new 2004 guidance
from Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and
the Joint Chiefs of Staff ... a final Taiwan
defense plan was published," Arkin wrote.
The plan now includes "air, naval, ground
amphibious, and missile defense forces and
`excursions' to defend Taiwan. Options include
maritime intercept operations in the Taiwan
straits [sic], attacks on Chinese targets on the
mainland, information warfare and `non-kinetic'
options, even the potential use of American
nuclear weapons," Arkin wrote.
Air operations in support of Taiwan will be
difficult when U.S. carriers can no longer dare to
go near China. Maritime intercept operations in the
Taiwan straits are becoming wishful thinking. Taiwan
changed its defense strategy in sight of these
Taiwan’s new defense concept employs an
asymmetric defense strategy, where Taiwan
maximizes its defense advantages, and targets an
invading force when it is at its weakest.
Whereas Taiwan’s previous strategy focused on
fighting across the entire Taiwan Strait and
defeating the enemy through attrition, the new
concept divides Taiwan’s defense operations into
two phases, both closer to Taiwan’s shores where
the lines of communication are short and
Taiwan’s forces can benefit from land-based air
denial and more effective surveillance and
The U.S. strategy has for decades been based on
air-superiority and sea control. It has yet to adopt
to the new situation in which anti-access and area
denial (A2/AD) weapons prohibit the use of most of
its (very expensive) offensive systems.
The lack of U.S. capabilities extend to its
defense systems. Hypersonic vehicles make U.S.
missile defenses largely useless. Saudi Arabia
recently learned that the U.S. has no air defense
system that is readily capable of defeating cruise
missiles and drones. While the Saudis had spent
billions of dollars on U.S. air defense systems the
Houthi could use those rather simple and effective
weapons to attack one of its largest oil
installations. It is no wonder then that the Saudis
filing for peace:
Saudi Arabia has given a green light to Iraqi
Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi to arrange a
meeting with Iran as a first step towards
de-escalating tensions in the region, Middle
East Eye can reveal.
Abbas al-Hasnawi, an official in the prime
minister's office, told MEE on Tuesday that
Abdul Mahdi was mediating between the
leaderships in Riyadh and Tehran and had
communicated each side's conditions for talks to
The Saudis still set some dumb conditions for
talks but a few more Houthi attacks on its oil
infrastructure will convince them that those are
The Saudis have to climb down because the
superpower that once protected them is no longer
able to do so. At least not as easily as it used to
Andrei Martyanov and others have
long predicted that the moment would come where
the U.S. would lose its supremacy. We no longer have
to wait for it. The moment is here.
This article was originally published by "Moon
Of Alabama"- -
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