CHICOM on deck!


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  1. And isn’t that a refurbished Iold Indian or soviet ski jump carrier they are using?

    They may start slow but they are good copycats.

    Comment by mech — November 27, 2012 @ 1:56 pm

  2. Well that gives them ONE as opposed to our 80 years of carrier landing experience….

    (my butt still puckers every time I try it in Microsoft Flight Simulator)

    Comment by TimO — November 27, 2012 @ 2:20 pm

  3. Billy Mitchell, phone your office…

    Comment by mojo — November 27, 2012 @ 2:36 pm

  4. Y’know, doesn’t look like there’s a whole lotta deck left in front of that wire if they get a bolter.

    Comment by apotheosis — November 27, 2012 @ 3:11 pm

  5. So, they finally got it to stop leaking, eh?

    They still don’t have blue-water projection capability, but they intend to. Assuming their economy doesn’t completely implode (before ours does – it will after, of course).

    Comment by Merovign — November 27, 2012 @ 3:56 pm

  6. That’s a fancy rolly-coaster deck on that airplane carrier. Maybe when their planes get bigger engines they can use flat decks.

    Comment by ZZMike — November 27, 2012 @ 5:42 pm

  7. F-15 = Eagle, F-14 = Tomcat, F-22 =Raptor, etc.
    F-35 = McNamara; after McNamara’s bureaucratic effort to make the F-111 THE aircraft for all services, all missions. The F-111 eventually succeeded very well in one of its roles, but a lot of time and treasure was lost trying to make one airframe fill all aerial combat roles.
    The F-35 is a jack of all trades and master of none, over budget, behind schedule, under capable. The F-35 also has the disadvantage of trying to please/subsidize the Euroweenies’ defense efforts by giving them some manufacturing and say in its design.

    Comment by dick, not quite dead white guy — November 27, 2012 @ 5:50 pm

  8. We are as good as we are at carrier operations in part because we paid for it in materials, training and lives. The Chinese have a lot of lives – and the will to spend them.

    Comment by RonF — November 27, 2012 @ 5:56 pm

  9. PS: Funny ritual, though, before landing – all those sailors walking prayerfully around the deck, probably chanting hymns (or more likely, sayings of Chairman Mao).

    Comment by ZZMike — November 27, 2012 @ 5:58 pm

  10. That carrier is about 1/2 as long as one of ours. That jet would limit them to 3 on deck. Note that the sea is calm and glassy. The Chinks are doing a FOD walk (…picking up foeign object damage doo daas that could damage a jet engine….)

    Not a threat to our carrier battle groups….

    Comment by Colonel Jerry USMC — November 27, 2012 @ 7:34 pm

  11. ZZ#9…. Nope, FOD Drill must be a Universal Language. And Colonel, I totally agree, Sir!

    Comment by Wollf — November 27, 2012 @ 7:37 pm

  12. ColJ,
    Not a big threat,
    a big target in submariner parlance.

    Comment by DougM (Well, thaaat sucked!) — November 27, 2012 @ 7:52 pm

  13. (… was gonna comment on the FOD walk, but you beat me to it again …)

    It isn’t just the size of the ship or the aircraft complement, there’s also the matter of culture.

    A few years ago, I was told the story (probably apocryphal) about a Russian MiG pilot who defected to the West. Didn’t like things at home, but still wasn’t totally convinced that the West was as free as rumours had it. The US officer given the job of integrating him into society tried various things to convince the fellow, but nothing worked.

    Then, somehow, he got permission to take the Russian to sea aboard a CVN. Where they spent a couple of hours watching the ship doing simultaneous launch and retrieval at night. And that did it.

    He realized there and then that no one person could possibly control all that activity, no matter how efficient the communication system. Decision-making just HAD to be delegated, especially the ability to adjust to changing circumstances and problems. And there was no way that mere sailors (no offence) could learn that sort of capacity for independent thought and initiative in a couple of years of military service – it had to have been inculcated throughout childhood. And if that sort of mental flexibility existed on the deck of a carrier, it had to exist throughout the rest of society.

    Mission accomplished.

    Now as I say, the story may not be true, but the lesson is. What brought it to mind was the one scene (at 1:00, just before the FOD walk) where the crew is marching out to the bow in two files, in step, just like on a parade square. This sort of regimentation does NOT indicate the kind of flexibility and individual latitude required for truly effective deck ops.

    So, no, this particular ship, or even more like it, and the Chinese Navy as a whole, won’t be a real threat to anyone. Not until they have crews that come from a population able to think on their feet and be trusted with responsibilities. And if they ever get to that stage, then China won’t likely be a military threat anyway.

    (And as for simultaneous night launch and retrieve? On a carrier smaller than a typical WalMart parking lot? ‘Nuff said.)

    Comment by Lord of the Fleas — November 27, 2012 @ 8:00 pm

  14. This is a chock full of high res pics vids on the whole deal since their deal in 1998 and finally having it shipped in 2001. The pics a sharp but shows the ‘cheesiness’ of how dictators feel about their toys.

    DiGiGlobe for more.

    Comment by LLoyd — November 27, 2012 @ 8:19 pm

  15. No catapult?

    Comment by Mumblix Grumph — November 27, 2012 @ 8:22 pm

  16. ^ Not after dinner, no.

    Comment by DougM (Well, thaaat sucked!) — November 27, 2012 @ 9:53 pm

  17. Wolff (#11): “FOD Drill must be a Universal Language.”

    Except for Russian jets (I don’t know what era). They could take off from a gravel pit. The engines just suck it up and spit it out. Some were found buried under desert sand in Iraq after Saddam graciously yielded power. Dig ‘em up, fly ‘em out.

    Comment by ZZMike — November 27, 2012 @ 10:16 pm

  18. Hey — that ain’t nuttin! Gotcha beat by 80 years!

    Ya hear-ed about this here Fast Train we gots here in Cally For Nee Ay?!? The one we pain paid near t’ a billy-yon dollers fer already? Oncet they start to layin that track in a decade or so, that thing will go at least 25 miles per hour!! 25 !!

    That there’s 1840 technology, that is.

    Comment by Claire: rebellious pink pig with car keys - and a *cause* — November 27, 2012 @ 11:22 pm

  19. Yes, it’s the 1920s. When those Jaanese and American aircraft carriers are no threat to the battleships of the Royal Navy.

    Of course, just like the 1920s, there’s never going to be another big war.

    We and our Japanese, French and British allies are the only ones capable of force projection.

    Comment by staghounds — November 27, 2012 @ 11:31 pm

  20. The Chinese are a long way from projecting force against major powers – but against minor powers or hapless small nations? Well, they’ve done that already.

    Comment by Merovign — November 28, 2012 @ 1:23 am

  21. Right at the moment the farthest they have to “project power” is across the Taiwan Strait and the East China Sea.

    Comment by apotheosis — November 28, 2012 @ 6:21 am

  22. Oh yeah. That looks like a carrier landing. Two guys just standing around where the fucking jet just landed. Happens all the time.

    Comment by Hog Whitman — November 28, 2012 @ 6:57 am

  23. Lord of the Fleas, it’s TWUE!!

    The Russian pilot’s name was Victor Belenko. He absconded with a Mig-25 and landed in Japan. Scared the crap outta the Japanese because the first clue they had he was coming was when he was rolling out on the runway.

    That’s when we found out the Mig-25 wasn’t quite the high-zoot technical wonder that the holders of the U.S. military purse strings was told it was in order to fund the F-14, etc. Round-head screws holding panels in the air stream, etc. Should have expected that from people that made the SKS, AK-47, Makarov, etc.

    But it took a long time to convince Victor that everything he saw in America wasn’t a (ahem) Potemkin Village display put together exclusively for him.

    Comment by rickn8or — November 28, 2012 @ 9:23 am

  24. I meant this as a bit of fun;
    but staghounds, merovign, and apo make good points.

    China is certainly a large regional power, but they’re only a land power. Until they can project that power, first regionally then globally, they cannot become a “superpower.”

    China is in it for the long-term. They’re starting from wayyy behind, they have a long way to go, and they see the leading powers fading. I think they see the 21stC as theirs to take. (Also, the CHICOMs see their hold on power at increasing risk, and tyrants always react to that with some kind of saber rattling.)

    Bad news?
    They need … experience.
    First, a couple of small off-shore wars to flesh-out the checklist, give the planners some exercise, fire-up the supply & logistics chain, tie-in the intel shops, shake-out the ops leadership, and create a culture of martial heroics.
    Let’s see … Taiwan and a few remote Japanese islands look tempting.

    Yeah, there’s that “poke at Uncle Sam” thing, too; but we’re really not their enemy, merely in the way. Anything they do against our interests will be to get us to recoil and draw back, not to fight.

    Comment by DougM (Well, thaaat sucked!) — November 28, 2012 @ 9:46 am

  25. Wonder what a Chinese Air Boss would sound like?

    Comment by rickn8or — November 28, 2012 @ 2:47 pm

  26. ^ Drop a drawer full of silverware on the floor.

    Comment by Hog Whitman — November 28, 2012 @ 4:34 pm

  27. ^ You numbah two.
    You wait.
    Okay, you go now!

    Comment by DougM (Well, thaaat sucked!) — November 28, 2012 @ 11:31 pm

  28. Yeah well …when Obama finally implodes our economy and there’s no money left to pay our ChiCom debt, we’ll be seeing plenty of these tubs steaming off the west coast.

    You can count on it.

    Comment by The Ugly American — November 29, 2012 @ 2:33 am

  29. Wonder what a Chinese Air Boss would sound like?

    I dunno, but “cat 2 is down” means someone in the mess hall got seconds.

    Comment by apotheosis — November 29, 2012 @ 9:57 am

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