September 21, 2007


Lost at Sea (ROBERT D. KAPLAN, 9/21/07, NY Times)

The military trend that is hiding in plain sight is the loss of the Pacific Ocean as an American lake after 60 years of near-total dominance. A few years down the road, according to the security analysts at the private policy group Strategic Forecasting, Americans will not to the same extent be the prime deliverers of disaster relief in a place like the Indonesian archipelago, as we were in 2005. Our ships will share the waters (and the prestige) with new “big decks” from Australia, Japan and South Korea.

Then there is China, whose production and acquisition of submarines is now five times that of America’s. Many military analysts feel it is mounting a quantitative advantage in naval technology that could erode our qualitative one.

So we're getting help from our allies--to whom, in that region, you have to add India, Taiwan, Indonesia, the Philipines, etc. (maybe even Vietnam in the not too distant future)--and the Chinese are responding with the old Soviet tactic of wasting tons of money on lots of crap to try and counterbalance the quality of our force? And this is a worry?

Posted by Orrin Judd at September 21, 2007 2:34 PM

That's what I was thinking - others are going to take on disaster relief? That's a bad thing why again? Other democracies we are allied with are increasing their naval presence in the Pacific and that is a cause for alarm why again?

The PLA Navy would have to cut through the JMSDF to get to us and I should be upset about that?

Posted by: Mikey [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 21, 2007 2:57 PM

Correct analysis of the quantity/quality issue.

The article omits the fact that "big deck" means one thing for the World Government and another for everybody else.

Posted by: Lou Gots at September 21, 2007 3:01 PM

Plus, if we ever need'em again, we'll just build great big brand spanking new and even better ones!

Posted by: Benny at September 21, 2007 4:04 PM

Are those lead based Chinese submarines gonna be able to surface?

Posted by: jdkelly at September 21, 2007 4:53 PM

Benny, and you know that just drives the rest of the world crazy.

Posted by: erp [TypeKey Profile Page] at September 21, 2007 9:33 PM

So, if the President announced that he was going to retain the Pacific as an American lake, Mr. Kaplan would be the first to stand up and applaud?

Posted by: Ibid at September 21, 2007 11:02 PM
« COMING FROM MATTEL, JUST IN TIME FOR CHRISTMAS... (via Glenn Dryfoos) | Main | SAT & B. & E. (via The Mother Judd): »