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The War Nerd / September 18, 2011
By Gary Brecher

When we lived in Long Beach, my dad used to say the same thing every time we saw the sign to the yacht club: “You know what a boat is?”

He’d ask the car that, then wait for somebody to answer him—he was a master of timing, except  nobody ever answered him no matter how long he waited, because my mom and sisters were always mad at him about something and I was too busy remembering that the Yacht Club was on some subdivision street that had the balls to call itself “Appian Way,” and I’d be furious in the back seat thinking no goddamn Roman legion ever marched down that stupid street, just those selfish Hot Wheels Merc sports models with seats for two people, selfish rich bastards. “Appian Way”! The nerve of those developers.

So while the car was enjoying a nice long sullen silence, he’d have to answer himself: “A boat is a hole in the water that you throw money in.”

It cracked him up every time, and probably made him feel better about the fact that we were as likely to be buying a boat anytime soon as we were to be running the Long Beach Marathon—I can just see us doing that, one of those funny “family run projects” where the whole fit bunch gets into a 20 ft caterpillar costume and trots along for 26 miles thinking they’re cute, the kind of local-news story that makes you wish you could see what an AK would do to a giant caterpillar.

Precious mem’ries, how they linger. I was remembering those drives down Highway 1 after reading the stories that China’s starting sea trials for its first aircraft carrier.

The weird thing about that story is that I grew up in California, so I have this prejudice that Chinese people are smart. And why would smart people build an aircraft carrier? I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—I’ll say it as many times as my dad told that hole-in-the-water joke if I have to: Aircraft carriers are the worst weapons around, giant holes in the water that you throw hundreds of billions of dollars into.

Being the Chinese, they did it the smart way: Got the basic platform on the cheap, did some smart bargaining against their ex-rivals the Russians. When the Soviet paper tiger shredded, there were bargains galore, including all the military hardware any rising power could buy. The Soviet Black Sea fleet rusted at anchor in what was now the independent country of Ukraine. (They dropped the “The” along with the Soviet alliegance; it’s just “Ukraine” now, like those bands that get mad if you add “The” to their names.)

People were starving in Ukraine—the honest ones. The not-so-honest ones were getting rich selling off all the Soviet guns, tanks, missiles, ships and secrets they could to the highest bidder. Soviet ships were rusting in every harbor in the world. Not just military ones; every port in every country had one or two rusting Soviet fishing ships sinking a foot or two a year, sometimes with their crews stuck on board, drinking themselves to death and stabbing each other to relieve the boredom.

Most of the Black Sea fleet ended up as scrap steel. In fact there’s probably some of a Soviet missile cruiser in that Hyundai you drive to work. A certain Chinese scrap-metal company strolled over to have a look at one hulk in particular—a Soviet carrier started in the 1980s, the Varyag. Judging by the way Chinese housewives look for veggies, I’d imagine the scrap dealer did a lot of shaking his head and sniffing and grumbling in Mandarin about how spotty it looked, and wasn’t that a worm poking out of the hull, and it smelled funny (all of it probably true, too). In the end, this dealer said he had a buyer in Macau who wanted to turn the hulk of the Varyag into a floating casino. Whoever was selling the ship—some local politico’s son, I’d imagine—bought that story and sold it cheap. Sad to say—because I have a lot of respect for Russian forces, though not so much for the way they treat the poor bastards in the ranks—that story pretty much sums up relations between Communist Russia and China. The Chinese won that century hands down. (Imagine Russia without Stalin; no way it could’ve turned out worse. Now imagine China without Mao; no way it could’ve turned out this good.)

Well, it turned out there was no casino deal in Macau. Instead the scrap dealer was a patriotic associate of the PLA, and he towed the ship straight to Dalian harbor, where they started taking it apart and remaking it into China’s first carrier.

By the way, I’m not kidding when I say that double-dealing ship buyer was a real patriot. That’s the difference between the Chinese defense establishment and the DoD: They’re at the stage we were in about 1942, where sure, there was some profiteering from the contractors, but at least it wasn’t something to brag about, and when people got caught they had the decency to be ashamed. So maybe this ship  buyer made a profit on the deal, but I bet he got a good deal for his country. Compare that with the disgusting crap that US defense contractors do now and you’ll see why we are so totally screwed. A month ago the Secretary of the Navy admitted to “systemic failure” when he admitted there were “multimillion dollar” scams in a procurement contract.

The Chinese are still dead serious about building up their navy. You read the stories about their excitement over this new carrier and it’s like being back in 1942, when everybody believed in this stuff—before Navy heroes turned into turds like Duke Cunningham.

In the first place, everybody knows there ain’t nobody can online war-nerd it like the Chinese. Just imagine 100 million sunken-chested or baby-fat Chinese war nerds hyperventilating garlic breath onto their monitors at the thought of their resurgent homeland breaking into the Carrier-owners club, the ultimate frat for countries with any military snobbery at all.

Well, that’s what’s happening right now in China.

There’s been this huge online survey to see what the new carrier should be named. See, this is the difference between a good healthy war-nerd country and a bunch of degenerates like Europe. In Europe they have these contests to name the baby polar bear at the Berlin Zoo (and then the damn thing dies anyway—sums it all up); in China every guy who can’t make the varsity is whacking the keyboard to chime in on what to call the new carrier:

“Recently, the aircraft carrier has become one of the hottest topics on Internet forums [in China]. About 80 percent of netizens say they would like to donate money to build the first Chinese aircraft carrier.

According to a survey conducted by Chinese portal Sina, 45 percent of respondents are in favour of naming the aircraft carriers after historical Chinese figures such as Mao Zedong and Zheng He; only 12 percent think they should be named after major cities such as Beijing and Shanghai. And 30 percent of respondents think the names of aircraft carriers should reflect the growing national strength of China.”

Read that, and hang yer heads in shame, fellow war nerds. Been a long time since “80 percent of netizens” in these parts cared about anything but how Chaz Bono’s gonna dance now that he’s got some weird ersatz dick tucked under his fat belly.

Four out of five of those poor 80-hour a week wage slaves in some filthy anthill city in China can’t wait to donate their own hard-earned money to build the carrier. We wouldn’t do that here, because we know goddamn well where the money would go: to buy Duke Cunningham another night on the yacht with some contractor-paid call girl. That’s right: Duke Cunningham lived on a yacht owned by his DoD contractor pimp buddy, Mitchell Wade. Wade named the boat the S.S. Duke Stir. And Duke wanted Wade to buy him girls and send them to the boat.

We’re supposed to think entrepreneurs outrank Alexander the Great now, supposed to consider the business dude just the crown of creation.  But from what I see looking at DoD contractors, they’re scumbags, modern sutlers trailing after the army for a quick nickel. Sutlers and pimps. Sherman quarantined them, one to a corps; Grant would’ve had them shot if he could’ve. Those were the days.

These Chinese war nerds don’t buy all this crap about the glorious businessman (even though they’re the best businessmen in the world); you can see that from the way they appreciate Mao. To them, he’s not some commie bogeyman, he’s George frickin’ Washington. Which he was, like it or not. Mao unified a seriously messed-up country all split into gang turfs, gave the most cynical people in the world a new sense of patriotism, turned Chinese who didn’t care about anyone who wasn’t a blood relative into suicide commandos who marched into North Korea in midwinter with nothing but quilted-cloth pants, a bag of rice and ammo, and jumped up out of the snow to give the US Army the biggest surprise of its life.

Zheng He: That’s one big eunuch–good name for a carrier

Zheng’s another interesting choice, a little weird for my tastes but good solid patriotic stuff anyway. He (the pronoun, not the guy’s name) was this 7 ft tall eunuch who led the 15th-c. Chinese fleet that sailed around the world. There was some book about it a couple years ago.

I don’t take too much stock in these books. When ten books come out all at once with titles like “How the Irish Saved the World” or “How Indian Civilization Turned Us from Apes into Geniuses” or “How the Chinese Actually Taught the Italians to Make Pasta” what it really seems to mean is: The ethnic group in the title is finally getting some cash. Once they move up the demographic rankings, they generate all these third-generation kiddie profs who start diving into the shelves to prove that granddaddy’s granddaddy actually was the first hominid to do this or that. Soon they’ll prove that whatever tribe comes into money in 2020 or so (the Persians—my guess) actually invented money while developing the wheel while performing brain surgery while discovering compassion and picnics, and looked good doing it too.

And that’s the point about this Chinese carrier: It’s about national pride, not military usefulness. The Chinese are after both those things, and it’s actually incredibly cool the way they’ve managed to get both. First, since they’re smart, they came up with a real weapon that totally neutralizes the US carrier fleet, a weapon that could sink all 11 of the US carriers in a few minutes, without even having to  bother with all the screening vessels and air cover and other useless “defenses” we’ve stacked around them. It’s not a glamorous weapon, it just works.

DF-21 Incoming

It’s a long-range ballistic missile specifically designed to kill carriers and other oversized surface targets. This missile, the DF-21, has a 900 mile range and drops down on the carrier from directly above.

“Equally intriguing has been the depiction of this capability in the Chinese media. A lengthy November 2009 program about anti-ship ballistic missiles broadcast on China Central Television Channel 7 (China’s official military channel) featured an unexplained — and rather badly animated — cartoon sequence. This curious ‘toon features a sailor who falsely assumes that his carrier’s Aegis defense systems can destroy a incoming ASBM as effectively as a cruise missile, with disastrous results.”

Read that and weep all over again. That’s our big consolation prize, the fact that the Chinese weapons video is “rather badly animated”—as in, “Ha ha, well at least they still can’t make good cartoons!”?

Never mind the animation, what about the plot? Cuz if you don’t see that that sailor who goes skipping along thinking that that phony-ass Aegis system is going to stop a warhead coming directly down at meteor speed is based on solid reality, you’re crazy. We have nothing, NO-thing, that will stop those missiles. Here’s a nice little quote on the reentry speed of an ICBM warhead. I’m not a physicist but I’d guess a warhead with a 900-mile range goes up enough to come down at roughly the same speed as this:

“The reentry speed of an ICBM is so great that the reentry vehicle can be filled with concrete for a fixed target, or metal rods for an area target; the kinetic energy of the warhead is so great that a conventional explosive filling would add no appreciable energy.”

We’re talking about man-made asteroids here. Remember the dinosaurs? You can add Carrier-o-saurus ex-Rex to your kid’s dino list. So if you’re into military maps, you can now put a red zone for 900 miles out from the coast of China and mark it off “US Carrier No-Go Zone.”

DF-21 (land-based) range: Carrier-free zone

I haven’t been able to see if this DF-21 can be fired from subs yet—I don’t think it can be at the moment—but nearly every missile can be adapted to sub use. If you can fire a Trident from a sub, this can go underwater too, sooner or later.

And when it does, well…that carrier that used to rule the waves will be exactly what those RMS This-or-That battleships were in WW II: Expensive statuary sitting in the harbor. The battleship got a fake “new lease on life” in the later stages of the Pacific War, thanks to total US air superiority, but if you want to see what happens to a WW II-era battleship in real combat, check out what happened to the pride of the British fleet, the battleship Prince of Wales and its teammate in Task Force Z (“Z”–good name, maybe they saw what was coming) Repulse. They ran into primitive Japanese dive bombers, stone-age tech with human pilots, flying low at a few hundred miles an hour, and yet they still hit the bottom in a few minutes.

Last above-water seconds of the P of W

Strange how not many naval warfare nerds want to talk much about that disaster. Might be because the Brits put on such a lousy performance in the Pacific War in general, so lousy they hushed the whole thing up and insisted on hanging a lot of Japanese naval officers in revenge, maybe just so they wouldn’t publish any memoirs with titles like “What was up with you losers skedaddling out of Singapore without even putting up a fight?”

Kinda sad: Brit diver flags P of W

They tagged along with what turned out to be the winning team and turned a lousy military record into a whole lotta braggin’. And in the meantime, nobody noticed that the rest of the battleships, theirs and everybody else’s battleships stayed in harbor until the admirals were absolutely certain of total, absolute air superiority—like, until the last coffee-grinder noise of an Me-109’s machine guns went all quiet on the Western Front.

And that’s where the carriers will spend their time if there’s anything like an all-out conventional war in the near future: In port.

Which brings us back to the big question: Why would smart military planners like the PLA spend so much money on a useless weapon like a carrier?

There are two possible reasons and I think we’ve got both, working together:

1. Decoy. This is a classic, and it lets the Chinese military tease the USN into wasting huge, unbelievably huge, money on a useless fleet of almost a dozen carriers and the incredibly expensive, over-engineered planes that fly from them. The US carrier fleet is a boondoggle at best, and one that costs a thousand times more than all the welfare cheats that your Congress-idiot loves to rant about put together. Even the USN, dumbest and sleaziest of all the services, knows that, but Congress just plain will not stop funding for carriers.

It’s easy and fun, if you’re Chinese—to tap into stupidity like that, especially when it’s mixed up with paranoid crap from the right and entrepreneurial sleaze from the sutlers. “China got carrier! Duh, we need more carrier!” Yeah, more cowbell, that’s the solution. You can’t fix stupid, but if you’re a potential enemy, why would you want to?

Aegis cruiser firing: Pure potlatch

The Chinese are polite most of the time, but they can’t help gloating about how they can use their undervalued Yuan to buy the makings of a carrier cheap off the dying Western economies:

“With a view to both marine security and economic factors, now is the right time for China to built [sic] its first aircraft carrier,” said Song Xiaojun, a military expert. “Current low prices of raw materials at home and abroad will offer the prospect of economies in procurement.”

Look at the cost comparisons to see how it works for China: They buy a platform for next to nothing from the dying Soviet empire; they refit it into a 300 meter carrier purposely designed to imitate US carrier design; they leak the info to the sleazoids who report on “Pentagon affairs” for the tame news services and committees; those committees pour another hundred billion dollars into a fleet arm that basically consists of floating monuments to the Battle of Midway. Cost comparison: For every yuan the Chinese spend, we spend thousands of dollars building gold-plated carriers from scratch, with huge profits sucked out by parasites at every stage. And when the war comes, neither side actually fields a surface navy because they know it’d be suicide.

2. Pride. Does anybody buy a yacht because they expect to make money on the resale? Or to put it in strictly naval-warfare terms, Why did the Germans and the Soviets invest in a surface navy when the USN had already overbuilt and overcommitted to dominating the surface? Maybe the Soviets did it as a decoy (see #1 above); there was a lot of speculation that way back in the 1970s. But probably not. Probably out of stupidity, or local sleaze, or pride–simple national pride. “We can build battleships as good as yours, you Brits”—that’s what the Nazis said in the 1930s. And in the 1970s, the Russians did the same with their ski-ramp carriers. Those never made sense, militarily; they were the same as buying a boat to sit in Long Beach Marina: A hole in the water that they threw money into—and then sold off cheap to the Chinese when it was their turn to play the nationalist pride game.

China can afford to build a carrier or two as display items, even aside from their decoy value. China is sitting pretty, on top of the world economy, right now—with a national currency undervalued by 40% against the poor old dollar.

China is also sitting on a huge chunk of the US national debt, which means that we’re actually funding that Chinese carrier, thanks to the miracle called compound interest.

Yuan vs. Euro (red); Yuan vs USD (blue, bluer, blown)

When you hit the point that your national biz is coasting like that, you start visiting boatyards, looking around for a 32-foot Bayliner with a parasail roll bar for some conspicuous consumption. Put that in the driveway and listen to the neighbor’s wife give him Hell: Sweet, sweet music to a nationalist’s ears.

And it’s good military strategy as well as a Gold Card Reward. I read the Injuns in Oregon and Washington used to have this custom they called “Potlatch,” which was about pure conspicuous consumption without even pretending it was for usefulness. They’d buy the most expensive things around, like copper plates with beads on them (don’t ask me, I ain’t Chief’s cuz) and throw them into a bonfire in front of their neighbors, just to show they could afford to.

Well, look, the Chinese are doing their carrier potlatch with a used chassis they got cheap off a Ukraine pawnbroker, and they’re only building one of them. If they can scare us into pouring more money into the carrier hole-inna-wadda with that one Quaker Gun of a carrier, they realize something like 100:1 force multiplier, to use DoD blabber. Not bad for conspicuous consumption.

It’s not hard to come up with quotes from the Chinese showing how much this carrier has to do with national pride instead of military usefulness:

“Building aircraft carriers is a symbol of an important nation. It is very necessary,” the China Daily paper quoted Admiral Hu Yanlin as saying earlier this month. “China has the capability to build aircraft carriers and should do so,” he said.

If you’re used to reading through DoD propaganda, no matter what country it’s coming from, you see what the admiral is saying here. Here’s my loose translation of what Admiral Hu is getting at: “We don’t actually need a carrier, but it’s part of being one of the big boys so we have to do it, like paying for your kid’s wedding. So we’ll turn out a few of them, but we’re only going to do it when it’s cheap and doesn’t interfere with production of real weapons like the DF-21.”

I’m telling you, they’re playing with us. Polite as they’re trying to be, the contempt seeps out from time to time—and I can’t blame them. With enemies like us, they literally cannot lose.

Would you like to know more? Read “This Is How Carriers Will Die”.

Gary Brecher is the author of the War Nerd. Send your comments to gary dot brecher at gmail dot com. Read Gary Brecher’s first ever War Nerd column by clicking here.

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Add your own

  • 1. fencerman  |  September 18th, 2011 at 4:13 pm

    Let’s not forget the other important group these carriers send a message to – any tinpot african dictator who might consider reneging on Sinopec’s extraction rights when they see NATO plastering their neighbours into the dirt.

    One carrier doesn’t mean shit in a modern army – any army that has exactly one of anything isn’t playing that game, beyond training and research at most. But it can scare some third world countries who don’t have more than a handful of cold-war era Migs into submission.

  • 2. az  |  September 18th, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    I don’t know about the Mao-Stalin thing, Gary. Stalin industrialized the country and even had Soviet engineers build up China’s industrial base (a lot of the big core industries in China were actually built 1949-1956). Mao may have been instrumental in kicking the KMT out, and did make the right call (as well as everyone else in the CPC, really) when Khrushchev decided to turn it into a backwater of the USSR, made growing their food, mining their coal, and making their trinkets out of the machinery that they export ‘in exchange.’

    However, after that he basically fucked up the agricultural reform, so even today almost 40% of the population works in the rice paddies, and when that wasn’t enough launched the whole Cultural Revolution deal, pitting students against bureaucrats, so nothing was done at all until he died. Now China is finally getting out of that, after making enough “made in china” trinkets for the West to actually build up heavy industry so that they can even build things like carriers, but this is 55 years down the line.

    Other than that, you’re correct.

  • 3. CensusLouie  |  September 18th, 2011 at 4:38 pm

    Do you not think the carrier doesn’t have value as a mobile airbase to pressure 3rd world countries that can’t fight back? Isn’t that your #1 rule: that conventional war just doesn’t happened between developed countries anymore? That if war broke out between nuclear armed nations, it wouldn’t matter who had the better conventional hardware?

  • 4. allen  |  September 18th, 2011 at 5:04 pm

    Excellent article, maybe the best of the “carrier” series. It did miss Fencerman’s point above that carriers are good for intimidating pitifully helpless of the world. So they’re not entirely useless. We will have to see to what extent China is willing to start up with that game though. (The U.S. tries to play it all the time of course, with occasional spots of incredibly poor judgment, as your superb 9-11 article pointed out.)

  • 5. Fissile  |  September 18th, 2011 at 5:16 pm

    A war between China and America? Not likely, not so long as we owe them all that money, and there’s even a snowball’s chance in hell of getting repaid. Killing people who owe you money is bad for business.

    I think you’re missing one angle. What’s a carrier’s true purpose? It’s not for going toe-to-toe with another military power. Like you said yourself, no carrier would last long in a fight between the big boys. The US uses it’s carriers to beat down the little guys who start getting uppity, and to keep its vassals in line. China’s carrier is more about sending a message to the folks in the local neighborhood: India, Japan, Korea, Vietnam. “Look, America isn’t the only one with a big swinging dick, and we’re a lot closer than America. You dig?”

    The Chinese carrier is a way of letting everyone know who is the boss in the local ‘hood.

  • 6. Ben  |  September 18th, 2011 at 5:24 pm

    Yeah, isn’t a third benefit of a carrier that it will help them smack around little, far away countries who start getting uppity? See the Falklands.

    Perhaps China would like a carrier to launch airstrikes if somebody invades an African country where they have invested in neodymium mining, or something like that.

  • 7. swr  |  September 18th, 2011 at 5:31 pm

    Your description of the mothballed Russian navy is a chilling look into America’s future.

    I’m sure that in ten years the Chinese will be able to pick up the Nimitz for the price of a good ten dollar whore.

    If the Iranians sink it with a missile they’ll have lost what? The price of a cheap blow job and a few thousand slaves?

  • 8. Richie Rich  |  September 18th, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    Yeah I think AZ comment was dead on. Stalin was clearly an evil bastard, but he was instrumental in industrializing the Russia and the countries around it. Mao on the other hand, was an impediment to Chinese industrialization – the CP and China would have been better off without him. Mao’s cultural revolution was basically a childish national temper tantrum against intellectuals. The chinese GDP grew fastest when Mao would relinquish control, and slow when he issued his idiotic demands (e.g. Hey peasants! Why don’t you try making steel in your backyard! That’s a good idea right?

    So basically you got it exactly reverse War Nerd.

    But my comment was about the substance of the article – what does this mean for the first strike capacity of China in nuclear terms? Is it really a big deal that there is essentially no way for US submarines or carriers to launch nuclear missiles from anywhere 900 miles out? Don’t we have ICMB’s anyway? I’m clueless, please educate my unworthy ass.

  • 9. swr  |  September 18th, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    Task Force Z (“Z”–good name, maybe they saw what was coming) Repulse. They ran into primitive Japanese dive bombers, stone-age tech with human pilots, flying low at a few hundred miles an hour, and yet they still hit the bottom in a few minutes.

    Minor quibble.

    The Sodacs and the North Carolina class battleships, which actually had anti-aircraft batteries, would have survived this kind of attack.

  • 10. iCONOCLAST  |  September 18th, 2011 at 6:16 pm

    Dolan, I just realized. You are also a master of narrative.

    THen again, i probably should have realized that sooner.

  • 11. John  |  September 18th, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Warspite had a pretty successful war too, and in the face of hostile air.

  • 12. wengler  |  September 18th, 2011 at 6:45 pm

    The US military’s use of the aircraft carrier is to park it off some country with stuff that the rich people want and do a CAP so that the US military isn’t entirely reliant on nearby client states with large airbases.

    The most interesting use of a Chinese carrier may be to “project force” against some of the quainter disputes they have with Vietnam and the Philippines. Of course politicians in the US will demand a couple carriers to park in the Taiwan straits and will consider it a national priority worthy of investing in an expansion of the carrier fleet.

    The Sun Tzu quote of ‘the best general is the one that wins the war without fighting’ applies here.

  • 13. John Figler  |  September 18th, 2011 at 6:46 pm

    So now the DF-21 works? I was thinking you said it was just USN propaganda for turf wars…

  • 14. Leper  |  September 18th, 2011 at 7:28 pm

    The 900-mile range listed for the DF-21D should be 1900 miles.

  • 15. joe  |  September 18th, 2011 at 8:04 pm

    they should build a moon colony if they want intonational pride.

  • 16. Mr. Bad  |  September 18th, 2011 at 8:10 pm

    @ 13. John Figler

    LOL, exactly, if the DF-21 works as advertised then sure, game over, but the presently unknown and unproven “terminal guidance” system would have to be of a quality and durability the Chinese have not yet demonstrated to be able to steal, re-engineer and deploy effectively.

    The sad fact about these war nerd articles is how ostensibly intelligent they sound – and how far off the mark they really are. We have subs too, Gary, and far more advanced ones than the chinks, also AWACS, EC and the support of EVERYONE of China’s neighbors and probably every member of ASEAN – if the Chinese were getting ready to fight over Taiwan we’d have heard of it before the PLA commanders did, and every missile site mapped sixteen times over, 9x per day and obliterated before our carriers moved into range of these SUPER MISSILES. Also, a missile moving at this speed means that if it is so much of a fraction of a % off it will be wide of a carrier by miles, so hopefully those trusty Chinese engineers will have figured out how to manufacture this type of super high tech and all the support systems that make it effective, so far they have trouble designing reliable jet engines for their home designed fighters.

    Finally, I agree with your contention carriers are obsolete and money drains, but they are not wholly ineffective, nor as acutely vulnerable as you would lead us to believe, at least for the next 5-10 years. China is not a real threat to our domination of the pacific – they cannot establish bases beyond the first island chain and cannot contend with our alliance system – any war they fight with us would be as disastrous for their ambitions as it would be for our naval forces in the region – they know better, their new carrier is more than a showpiece, as many others have mentioned when they’ve figured out how not to crash the planes taking off into the ones landing they will build a real carrier and bully smaller nations with it, same as we do.

  • 17. franc black  |  September 18th, 2011 at 8:26 pm

    In defence of Gary’s Stalin-Mao lines:

    -Stalin’s body got dug-up, the USSR disbanded, and Russia is f’d up in terms of governance and national pride.

    -Mao is REVERED in China, they still circulate his little Red Book, people line up for hours to see his body on display in Tianenmen Square (I’ve seen it myself), Chinese unity/patriotism is f’n unreal (ask anybody who has travelled there or dealt with delegations or their grad students abroad).

    I’m curious about the path that carrier is going to take. I wonder if somebody will start a website (surely can be seen from satellite images) that shows where it sails to … will be fun to see how China f’s with the minds of the US military establishment with this naughty yachty plaything of theirs …

  • 18. Mr. Bad  |  September 18th, 2011 at 8:32 pm

    I’d like to point out one more thing, a bit technical but whatever. When it comes to ballistic missiles there is no such thing as a “pinpoint” hit, cruise missiles yes, because they fly like planes and like planes can be more easily shot down but ballistic missiles, no. The accuracy of a ballistic missile is expressed as “circular error probable”, the “CEP” is the radial arm distance around a target that the missile has a 50% chance of falling within – and that is for a missile fired “perfectly”, with no errors at all. Also, this a median average, not a mean, so many of the missiles will fall farther out of the circle. So far 50 to 100 meter CEP is the best anyone can do, and that would be on a stationary target, like a troop formation, city, silo, etc., not a ship that can change speed, direction, and sits on top of an ever shifting ocean – the beam of a Nimitz Class carrier is about 70 meters – do the math. The Chinese might get lucky, sure, but it isn’t shooting fish in a barrel like you make it sound – that is just stupid.

  • 19. Bawdymonkey  |  September 18th, 2011 at 9:20 pm

    I think some of the criticism of the article is missing the point. America could still win any conventional war but that is not going to happen, or if it does, as the War Nerd has previously pointed out, would probably be something more like swarms of predator drones dog-fighting in an in-between area like, I dunno over Chinese plantations in Africa.
    The article is trying to say that the carrier is little more than a thrifty investment in a symbol and that causes the US to panic and throw money away. No one is going to sink anyone’s boat. The Chinese feel better about themselves and we waste billions of dollars without any strategic advantage.
    The money would be better spent paying the Chinese to accept our toxic waste and hazardous material.

  • 20. Tony  |  September 18th, 2011 at 10:55 pm

    Never have a boat that you wouldn’t be proud to have as your coffin. –my Dad’s quote

  • 21. ☭ mouse ☭  |  September 18th, 2011 at 11:15 pm

    @2 az, I think the idea would be that Mao fucked up a lot of things technically, but he unified the country first. Real advancements came later, but wouldn’t have been possible otherwise. You needed a revolution from the bottom up to do that.

    My very limited experience – Seems like Chinese people have mixed opinions on Mao, they did need to get past the whole personality cult thing though. But he is always going to be, in some way, the founder of modern China.

    (I think rabid anti-communism of the American variety is and always was stupid — look at the results! Cant question the free market in any way, no matter how shitty the situation!)

  • 22. Patriot  |  September 18th, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    One thing the Chinese government could use the carrier for is to protect ethnic Chinese in South East Asia during the semi-regular persecution parties that take place in Indonesia etc. A carrier group showing up offshore to “restore order” or “maintain stability” is one hell of a threat.

  • 23. Bradford C.  |  September 18th, 2011 at 11:56 pm

    I looked into figures on the Soviet Navy while researching a paper on Russia’s tiff with Japan over the Kuriles. It was pretty clearly meant to be a purely defensive force, with enough potential to project power over all the Eastern Bloc countries with a port. Demanding free and fair elections, comrade? We’ll park a few cruisers off of “Danzig” and see what you think about defying Communist Party.

    Of course it never came to that, since the Red Army could thug out on any country with a direct land route to Moscow. I imagine they still had to worry about US projection, since it’s not very convenient having a Carrier fleet parked off of Sevastopol, or moving in on Arkhangelsk. They needed a trigger to make sure the US kept out of their nautical sphere.

  • 24. Eddie  |  September 19th, 2011 at 1:03 am

    The mark of a successful military operation is not how much money you spend but precisely how little. That and how much you are able to lever your opponents weight against him.

    In this spirit lobbing ballistic missiles on carriers seems to me to be a path taken once you have exhausted all other means of disabling the carriers. There is an air of desperation in the very act.

    The Chinese are a smart people and no doubt sensitive to matters of appearance so I doubt they would use the big missiles unless they really needed to.

    In the same way I doubt nuclear missiles will ever come up in casual warfare unless something went terribly wrong.

    All that you need to disable/destroy a carrier is a simple sea skimming missile programmed with the location of the carrier. As with anything you will need to avoid rookie mistakes like using GPS to track coordinates but once you have the geo location problem solved your missile will find it’s target and unless you have some bad luck will also hit it’s target.

  • 25. Vox  |  September 19th, 2011 at 1:59 am

    Gary, I was in Beijing recently.

    I think there’s a strong possibility that you may not be wrong.

    Mr. Bad: If they mass-produce the anti-carrier DF-21s and fire ’em like bullets, all bets are off.

  • 26. bob  |  September 19th, 2011 at 2:12 am

    To the point on the ICBM’s re-entry speed-

    Plane? How the fuck do you steer something going mach 20? You don’t.

    It’s a delivery system.

  • 27. arras  |  September 19th, 2011 at 3:13 am

    Just small correction:

    British battleships of Singapore were sunken by Japanese twin engine tactical bombers using torpedoes not by dive bombers. Planes used were Mitsubishi G3M and G4M.

  • 28. Andy  |  September 19th, 2011 at 3:14 am

    I thought the ultimate unanswerable anti ship missile was supposed to be the Sunburn?

    Clearly there’s some games being played, that’s for sure…

    Mouse- you’re exactly right. Free market ideology is the Western equivelant of Stalinism – the ultimate economic doctrine that’s supposed to be perfect therefore it cannot be questioned in any way whatsoever. The fact that it doesn’t work is merely a minor inconvenience and must be the fault of the people, as the theory is just so goddam awesome it can’t be at fault.

    So you’ve got State planning delivering great healthcare here in the UK, but as it doesn’t conform to the doctrine of the Market our system gets disbanded because it doesn’t work in theory, even though it’s fine in practice.

  • 29. Machak  |  September 19th, 2011 at 5:54 am

    Chinese are pulling Amerikkka’s leg again. The amount of hysteria surrounding this rust bucket is ASTOUNDING.
    Just like you said, Gary, this thing will make US of A sink more money into USN, yacht club for sleazeballs.
    Smart warlike nations invest their money in missiles and artillery.
    Stupid warlike nations invest their money in floating coffins, full of useless gadgets and fish food.
    Food for thought:

  • 30. LIExpressway  |  September 19th, 2011 at 6:16 am

    Carriers used to bomb poor backwater boondocks, not to fight modern navy’s.

    The best we got with ICBM’s during the 80’s were within a few yards on stationary targets. The Russians could only pull off near misses. ICBM’s are expensive and compared to curies missile swarms pretty dumb. You expect me to believe the Chinese mastered this on a moving targeting 10 years what we and the Russians worked 50 at. Mmmmmokay. If you say so. I say pure propaganda. More to keep the hungry peasant masses happy.

  • 31. Erik  |  September 19th, 2011 at 6:17 am

    Scary stuff.

    Only, there’s a cheap and easy defence against ballistic missiles: change course. At thirty times the speed of sound maneuvering is totally out of the question, so you can plot the trajectory before the missile reaches the apogee and you know when and where it’ll hit minutes in advance.

    That’s why real anti-ship missiles cruise below the speed of sound and below the radar, to minimize the footprint and maximize the surprise.

    Not that I’d want a carrier if they gave them away for free. You are perfectly right in that respect, they are big, fat sitting ducks.

    The best way to kill an aircraft carrier is still by submarine. A couple of years ago, a Swedish diesel sub – the HMS Gotland – scored several kills on USS Ronald Reagan during an exercise.

  • 32. Tomasz Wegrzanowski  |  September 19th, 2011 at 7:49 am

    Carriers are not meant for wars between equal sides. US has carriers so it can bomb random Middle Eastern countries, France has carriers so it can threaten its former African colonies, and China needs a credible threat to back its claims for South Chinese Sea.

    Even a crappy carrier will be very useful against the might of Philippine Navy.

  • 33. Karl Farts 3148  |  September 19th, 2011 at 8:36 am

    @18 Mr. Bad

    So they fire 10 of them at one time, you idiot, do the math.

  • 34. Jack Boot  |  September 19th, 2011 at 8:45 am

    A few points, if I may:

    1) In 1949, China badly needed an iron broom; and Mao was just the man to wield it.
    The pity (for China, anyway) was that he lived too long. Imagine if Mao had died in 1956 rather than ’76; after sweeping away the filth, but before launching the Great Leap Forward & the Cultural Revolution. How powerful would a China ruled by Chou-En-Lai have become by now?

    2) Carriers are still useful against brown & black people; but for how much longer? Technology always percolates down-market; eventually, even the Somalis will be able to afford a few sea-skimmers.

    3) I recall reading that China plans to build 6 carriers – cleverly based on the British ski-jump, rather than the USN’s Rube Goldberg-ish steam catapault.
    That suggests that the PLN might be repeating Kaiser Billy’s mistake.

    All will be revealed…

  • 35. Mr. Bad  |  September 19th, 2011 at 10:35 am

    @ 33. Karl Farts 3148

    I don’t think you’re very familiar with “math” or probability or you wouldn’t make such an obtuse comment, they can fire off 10, 20, 100 all at once – it doesn’t appreciably improve their chance to hit the carrier – any hit would be pure luck.

    The lowest CEP under combat conditions would likely be around 150 meters, so none of the missiles fired could possibly score a hit. A ballistic missile is also incredibly easy to track during its launch (boost) phase, unlike a cruise missile of sea skimming missile.

    Any carrier group would have plenty of advance notice a massive ballistic missile barrage was unleashed and plenty of time to take evasive action, and all this is assuming that you’re not so brain dead to tale Gary’s word on the Aegis, which is basically recapitulated Chinese propaganda.

    Sure, once the missiles have reached their apogee and are on their way down to the carriers they are basically meteors and not able to be intercepted, but on their way up they are very predictable moving targets that can be engaged and destroyed with present day tech – that is why we have Aegis cruisers in the Med – to intercept possible ballistic missile attacks before they hit mid course. I’m not saying that this sort of ballistic missile tech doesn’t present a future danger, but it is not an immediate one and the notion that these can be ripple fired en masse like a Katyusha salvo is laughable stupid, uninformed and a good indication that you’re a douchebag talking out his ass.

  • 36. Tim  |  September 19th, 2011 at 10:50 am


    ships are to/for show off, don’t you understand that there ain’t gonna be no naval battle = Mexican standoff in the near future!

    The closest we’re gonna get to battle is in the movies such as: “Battleship (2012) Official HD Trailer Debut” @

  • 37. atlas_lied  |  September 19th, 2011 at 10:50 am

    Mr. Bad’s name and editorial stance and aggressiveness sounded familiar. Who insists that the US naval carrier group can be defended WHILE admitting that they’re also useless?

    Thus I googled “mr. bad + exiledonline.” Lo and behold, Mr. Bad has written specious crap about the sanctity of USA USA USA and the greatness of free market exploitation.

  • 38. Anarchy Wolf  |  September 19th, 2011 at 10:52 am

    What’s the point of anything naval today? Other than pushing around or bombing 3rd worlders? You’d think modern missile tech would make it all obsolete in a stand up fight. It’s all about posturing, basically.

  • 39. atlas_lied  |  September 19th, 2011 at 10:58 am

    Oh, I forgot to add, Mr. Bad was outed as a Koch troll.

  • 40. Tommo  |  September 19th, 2011 at 11:02 am

    This is great news. I almost got into a fistfight with a dimwit from the Ronald Reagan when it was in port. Hopefully the Chinese will shut him and all his blather about being NYC hardcore back in the day permanently.

  • 41. RED ARMY HQ  |  September 19th, 2011 at 11:17 am



    Dolan, did you ever here of the Buddhist saying “Do not flatter your benefactor”? I guess not, more of a Confucian, eh?

  • 42. Mr. Bad  |  September 19th, 2011 at 11:20 am

    @ 39. atlas_lied

    Yup, ad hominem will do when all else fails, at least I’m not a sententious fraud with an inferiority complex.

  • 43. atlas_lied  |  September 19th, 2011 at 11:38 am

    Mr. Bad, you’ve just been asserting one thing, then when presented with other points, you’ve simply changed your stance. Thus you’ve contradicted yourself. Most people would have the good sense to stop right there, but at least you continue spouting stupid things.

    That, and the whole free-market BS thing is pretty amusing. Keep typing these out. Your Koch/defense contractor masters are paying you by the piece, aren’t they?

  • 44. s e pearson  |  September 19th, 2011 at 11:41 am

    For the ultimate in carrier fuckwittry check our spanking new carriers, the Queen Elizabeth class. The biggest RN warships ever built they cost so much, and we are so shit broke, we can’t afford planes to put on them. Seriously, check it out.

    For even bigger yuks check out the previous Queen Elizabeth class carriers, cancelled in 1966 because …… manned aircraft were obsolete and carriers were vulnerable to cheap missiles.

    As for the problem of hitting a carrier with a ballistic missile. If the Chinese worked out a way of zapping a satellite the size of a washing machine doing 17,000 mph 200 miles up, landing one on 100,000 tons of steel doing 35 mph isn’t going to a problem. Shit you can probably pick something up from the app store which can do it.

    In any case a near miss would probably be good enough, “captain! The USS Long Island just disappeared and I’ve got a faint taste of metal in my mouth” “OK boys lets go Norfolk, maximum revolutions!”

  • 45. Scott Locklin  |  September 19th, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    The Chinese missile is pretty good, however, the Rooskies have had decent anti-ship things for a while now. The BrahMos-2 they’ve developed with the Indians looks pretty unstoppable (Mach-6), and is a lot cheaper than a MRBM:
    The D-21 used to be a sub launched missile, so, ya, it’s going on subs.

  • 46. John Figler  |  September 19th, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    I’m not really interested, nor versed for that matter, on rocket science, but most of what I have read about the DF-21 says either “won’t work!” or “might work but after looooots of work/money”.

    When a simple saturation attack with usual cheap, out of the mill, cruise missiles already available could do the job it looks like the Chinese are not all that smart after all. All you have to do is to be sure you launch “all the antimissile rounds aboard the enemy carrier group” + 1 of your own missiles. The Chinese can’t mass produce cheap but effective cruise missiles, supersonic ones, even?

    So maybe the DF-21 is just a delivery vehicle to “land” terminal guidance antiship conventional swarm MARVs in the general vicinity of any CVN TF or, even simpler, a nuclear delivery system.

    After all, if they are going to blast a USN CVN, they may as well use the the big sticks. The ensuing brawl is not going to end before using them anyway.

  • 47. rick  |  September 19th, 2011 at 2:32 pm

    Re: Stalin vs. Mao–Hitler would have rolled Nicholas II in 8 weeks, just like he said he would. Surrender and capitulation, with outright genocide and slavery for Russians. Stalin deserves some credit for his sociopathic insanity/industrialization.

  • 48. Mr. Bad  |  September 19th, 2011 at 3:30 pm

    @ 43. atlas_lied

    You’re so stupid it hurts to argue but let me ask, how exactly did I contradict myself? Why don’t you point it out? You took my comments, oversimplified them and exaggerated them until they were in fact contradictory and then called me an idiot – you are arguing with yourself, not me, and you are an idiot, so you’re in fact 1/2 right. That’s the best compliment I can pay you.

    @ 46. John Figler

    If you want to make an argument for a Nuke warhead I would agree – it’s a near 100% kill rate, but there is a sort of gentleman’s agreement in place regarding not using tactical nukes and it will probably hold, even in a Taiwan straight scenario. Even simpler for the US is to destroy China’s targeting and C&C completely with ASAT weapons – the Chinese military satellite system is nowhere near as advanced as ours,and has little redundancy, and without their SAT assets the DF-21’s are useless, there would be no way of effectively targeting a carrier group, much less isolating a carrier, without the radar emissions detectable by low earth orbiting satellites. One thing the Aegis ships have proved (the Chinese as well)is how easy it is to destroy a satellite. A carrier group with E2D’s and Aegis can fight independently, it is designed to do so, regardless of the condition of US SAT resources.

  • 49. MQ  |  September 19th, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    Mao gets no credit because of the ideological focus on his worst mass-murdering moments, particularly the Great Leap Forward famine. But look up what happened to Chinese life expectancy during his entire 30-year reign and you’ll get a surprise. Better, compare it to progress in India during the same period. Dude saved more lives than he killed.

    And he built a system that was durable to reform after his death…change could happen without falling apart. He deserves some credit for that as well.

  • 50. maxie  |  September 19th, 2011 at 4:39 pm

    Funny as ever, like the “used chassis they got cheap off a Ukraine pawnbroker” bit. But potlatch was where they gave each other gifts and smoked kinnikinnick.

  • 51. atlas_lied  |  September 19th, 2011 at 5:51 pm

    I’m wondering why other nations continued to procure arms contracts instead of scooping up discounted assets of the former Soviet Union? No one really needs an aircraft carrier, but it makes more financial sense to get a cheap used one than to purchase one from scratch? Were the French, British, Thai, and of course American Navies so wasteful? Oh wait, that was the point of the War Nerd’s article.

    @Mr. Bad,

    So you’re being paid by the piece. Not a big deal, I don’t take it personally.

    Here’s where your posts become laughable:

    You first derided the DF 21 by saying it wasn’t accurate enough to hit a carrier. When someone rightly pointed out that a number of DF 21s could saturate the carrier’s location and rain death from above, you changed your tune and said the DF21s would be shot down on their way up. If launching missiles can be (implausibly) shot down Star Wars style, what can stop a missile from shooting down a huge, slow floating barge like a carrier?

    Easier target, quick and tiny missile, or slow and huge boat?

    Ronnie Reagan would probably take you seriously, but he was never too sane. Oh, and your previous editorials provided some good comedy too. Unleash some words of wisdom about the free markets along with your fine knowledge of the military.

  • 52. az  |  September 19th, 2011 at 6:00 pm

    @MQ, others, yeah he’s revered now because he’s such a controversial figure that it’s better to paint a ‘safe’ picture of him for the population to consume (see here) than to just make it a matter of public speculation. However, the Great Leap Forward did fail to achieve its own goals (collectivize agriculture and grow industrial output, like the USSR’s first Five Year Plan), and the Cultural Revolution was just Soviet ideology about progress, except minus the whole building up heavy industry bit and plus using urban youths for conflicts with bureaucracy and intelligentsia rather than just regular old purges (I guess it looks better, but the result is a little predictable).

    I did say that he was instrumental in founding the PRC (well, maybe not clearly enough), but in terms of statesmanship he was basically a half-assed Stalin. You also have to remember that his whole ideological bent, at least before going full way to hick pragmatism, was ‘anti-revisionist Marxism-Leninism,’ aka the Soviets’ ideology before Khrushchev ‘officially discredited’ Stalin in 1956.

    As for Russia collapsing and China still existing, it’s hard to attribute either of those significantly enough to Stalin or Mao respectively without taking a fatalistic perspective, so it’s probably not a very relevant point.

  • 53. FuckChina  |  September 19th, 2011 at 6:58 pm

    I love you Gary but please don’t buy into that whole Kissinger line of thinking.

    Mao murdered over 30,000,000 of his citizens. He did everything he could to annihilate China’s old history, cultural customs and religions. He enslaved the people to the government. In short, he actually did what rabid right-wingers always nightmare about Obama doing. China’s economy only grew after he died…. besides that, Taiwan’s was able to grew remarkably under K-S without causing so much misery and suffering to the people.

  • 54. tom  |  September 19th, 2011 at 7:11 pm

    As soon as a real war starts, the carriers are useless. They’re for projecting power against defenseless countries, but in a real war, they all go home and it’s all about the submarines.

    I wonder if the US has any really, really big submarine troop transports or like drone bases.

    The only way the US fights a land war against China is by landing troops in South Korea via submarine.

  • 55. ☭ mouse ☭  |  September 19th, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    @53 actually I think it was more than 30mil, more like 50mil they say nowadays… but the point is if you are going to compare how leaders caused deaths… most of the deaths attributed to Mao are through famines that were caused by overly optimistic policies of the Great Leap Forward which had unforseen consequences and just incompetence. (Or the push for everyone to make the steel, and people ignored their farming causing food shortage). So they are not really the same thing. Also China is a more populous nation, so any famine is going to kill more people. Not really defending him, but you are acting like he ordered the deaths, which is stupid.

  • 56. FuckChina  |  September 19th, 2011 at 8:43 pm

    Still, Mao wasn’t exactly a giant saint…

    Let’s not forget the Cultural Revolution (it’s not like everyone only got killed from starvation) or the invasion of Tibet.

    And he never took responsibility for his actions- he kept governing China into the ground until his heirs figured out how retarded the west was and began their plan for domination.

  • 57. FuckChina  |  September 19th, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    Although, I concede Mao succeeded- by pure accident.

    His nation of brainwashed slaves has proven most effective at making huge money by acting as slave labor. Unlike Commie Russia the Chinese worship money and know how to make their vast populace make money.

    Like it or not, socialism works- as long as the government knows what it’s doing.

  • 58. ian  |  September 19th, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    “But it can scare some third world countries who don’t have more than a handful of cold-war era Migs into submission.”

    Are we talking about Vietnam? Because I don’t think that works on them.

  • 59. The Great Poo  |  September 19th, 2011 at 9:55 pm

    Only one quibble, Great Nerd of War:
    China would have been better off under Chiang Kai Shek’s Kuomintang, for all their corruption, buffoonery and murdering fuckheadedness. Just look at the current status of Taiwan, and its slow evolution from starving shit-hole to first world status, and imagine that magnified by 50. Whatever the achievements of the CCP, the same results could have been done with vastly less suffering and with a gradualist approach.

  • 60. Mr. Bad  |  September 19th, 2011 at 10:29 pm

    @ 51. atlas_lied

    Look, I can see you’re trolling me so I’ll get down to it – I never “changed my tune”, you dunce, some of the DF-21’s could be shot down on the way up, the rest will miss, I never conceded that any DF-21’s would likely hit their target – in the same post you reference to make you inane point I stated clearly and unequivocally that:

    “The lowest CEP under combat conditions would likely be around 150 meters, so none of the missiles fired could possibly score a hit.”

    and that it wouldn’t matter if they fired “10, 20 or 100”. Does that sound like I “changed my tune” you ignoramus? The fact is that if these missiles were fired in anger every available countermeasure would be employed to stop them, however low the chance of their scoring a hit was, because that’s how you do it when a friggin’ US aircraft carrier is the target of an enemy attack, you dolt. You don’t hang back and wait to see them splash.

    I was merely expanding my argument to show that in addition to the inaccuracy problem (which may be resolved in the near future, 5-10 years was what I guessed) there are also many OTHER problems associated with the deployment of the DF-21 in practice that the threat is overblown, an over hyped boogeyman to justify more DOD spending. You’re a tool, case closed.

    I also should reiterate that if you think you can fire even 10 of these DF-21’s simultaneously at the same target, that at any time more than 1/2 of the DF-21 launchers are actually functioning and not in a maintenance cycle you are, once again, a dullard. Maintaining a hundred, much less a couple hundred mobile DF-21 batteries is extremely resource intensive, expensive, and simply beyond the operational capabilities of the Chinese at this point. There is a reason that they don’t just have “thousands” of these missiles… you tool.

  • 61. Massena  |  September 20th, 2011 at 12:25 am

    It’s always just been Ukraine. The ‘The’ is a Western addition.

  • 62. True Kilcockian  |  September 20th, 2011 at 12:49 am

    @Fuck China
    The ‘destruction of China’s heritage’ was the great helmsman’s greatest achievement. Since the time of Wang Anshi the inheritors of that culture jin shi, wen ren call them what you will I prefer han jian myself have stultified China and kept their foot on the neck of the Chinese poor.

    The 30 million is bullshit and based on the assumption that the ‘natural’ death rate in China in the 1960s was the same as the one in France. You didn’t know that Fuck China because you are fucking stupid.

    Communism has been dropped and the han jian are back in charge in China though and so the country is fucked. They will never retake Taiwan let alone win a war against America.

  • 63. FuckChina  |  September 20th, 2011 at 12:56 am

    Why the fuck does every politician in this country deep-throat China and ignore how they’ve raped us economically?

    China doesn’t have to fire a single bullet at us, we’re more than eager to simply hand over the country dollar by dollar every year.

  • 64. Ro  |  September 20th, 2011 at 1:08 am

    Gary, I really appreciate your gift for making me laugh my ass off while contemplating this very serious subject.

    I do agree with you that the function of this carrier within the context of Chinese state planning and general consciousness, is largely symbolic, with some residual physical utility which may or may not be realized. The Chinese have had Sun Tzu to refer to for a very long time, and I would say that their behavior up to now reflects deference to his opinion. They seem to be taking notes from Bin Laden. If you want to take the US down just make them spend more money on no real return and watch their power wane.

    With that said, the Chinese know very well that militarily, at this moment they would be out of their league to directly challenge the United States militarily. Since a strong military depends on a large technocratic class, a strong industrial capacity and a resilient economy, as well as a large supply of young men willing to do the bidding of the state, China will not resolve to compete with the US until it matches the US in these latter areas. There are two ways that China can do this. First, they can rise to the level of advancement that the United States has achieved, or they can somehow either effect or wait for the US to deteriorate to a point that finds them matched equally enough that warfare would be at least expensive enough to try to avoid for both parties. At that point, China will have the advantage in negotiation that would mark its ability to balance the power of the United States, and contract its sphere of influence in Asia and the west Pacific. This is something not seen in the world for many years now.

    Since the rise of China’s economy is coinciding with the deterioration of the US economy, all that China has to do is wait. Wait, spy, develop develop develop until one day we don’t realize that we are faced with a foe that has all of the elements of technical advancement that we have, maybe more, but with four times the population and a self righteous mission which the US will not be in a position to dispute, given its own imperial history.

    But with that said, I doubt there will be any significant spasms of violent confrontation as there were in the past. Nations just depend on each other too much to fight each other for very long these days. But who knows, things can change very quickly in this crazy world we live in.

  • 65. True Kilcockian  |  September 20th, 2011 at 2:41 am

    China won’t develop. Its current development is the monetisation of the far seeing reforms of the great helmsman.
    The first literate generation
    Generally available health care
    Massive increase in life expectancy

    Generally available health care has already been rolled back on by the han jian class that has betrayed China since the time of Wang Anshi.

    Communism gave China dynamism without Communism you have wealthy compradors and cycles of Cathay.

  • 66. Pat Kittle  |  September 20th, 2011 at 3:14 am

    Mao considered cannon-fodder to be his ultimate weapon, which is why he encouraged mindless overbreeding.

    Once he was out of the way the Chinese wisely & resolutely did a 180 on all that. Of course they caught hell for it from outraged PC twits & bible-thumpers alike.

    It no trivial detail to consider that China’s about the size of the US with over 4x the people! Americans — look around you. Now imagine (over) 4 more people EVERYWHERE you now see one.

    Yes, an aging population causes problems but those problems have to be faced sooner or later & sooner is the real smart option. There’s no way around that, unless someone’s figured out how to have endless growth in a finite place.

    If we were smarter than we are we’d be encouraging birth control everywhere.

  • 67. jim  |  September 20th, 2011 at 4:37 am

    Take a DF-21 & use metal rods (tungsten is standard), airburst it at the relevant altitude – this will produce a kill-zone with a radius at least as large as the CEP cited & potentially much wider.

  • 68. Rehmat  |  September 20th, 2011 at 6:23 am

    Chinese-Indonesian community in Palembang has built a mosque in memory of Chinese Admiral Zheng He (1371-1433), who introduced Islam into the area.

  • 69. choodak  |  September 20th, 2011 at 7:49 am

    you’re crazy that could never happen to the US. we’re number 1. USA USA USA!!! 🙂

  • 70. Rehmat  |  September 20th, 2011 at 8:07 am

    choodak – Sorry to burst your USA, USA…. baloon. Wall Street Journal is not a USA source but an Israeli Hasbara Committee member.

  • 71. Vendetta  |  September 20th, 2011 at 8:48 am

    Most of you armchair generals in the comments section are pretty much dead wrong. You may all disagree with Mr. Bad for not following your ideology, but calling him a Koch-whore doesn’t change facts, and they are on his size.

    Here are a few points that I feel must be made:

    1) The DF-21 and ballistic missiles in general are enormous. This is not something you can use like a Katyusha. And because of the missile’s size, hitting the DF-21 while it’s on its way up is like hitting a plane, something an Aegis defense system is capable of.

    2) Radar satellites are not really feasible as a targeting system. Two ways to go with them: very low resolution to get a decent field of view, or high resolution but basically like looking through a telescope, not at all suited for sweeping the ocean. Furthermore, satellites get only a limited time to pass over their targets and are vulnerable to being shot down. I’ll buy that the DF-21 has some ability to correct its course on the way down, but it can’t turn very far when it’s coming down so fast, so you need to have it placed over its target pretty precisely. Chinese need to use some kind of aerial reconnaissance to get that kind of precise data on the positioning of ships and to search for the carrier fleet effectively.

    So, the DF-21 is no magic bullet solution to sinking carrier fleets. No missile is. Gary has brought up the scenario of the carrier fleet parked offshore of say, Iran, getting spammed by missiles and blown to shreds, but let’s remember that under any other circumstances, you can’t just push the button and make carriers die.

    Locating, targeting, and destroying a carrier fleet requires combined operations. Sure, your missile may have a 1000 kilometer range, but do you have radar capable of seeing 1000 km? You need to fly aircraft close enough to detect the carrier fleet and get your targeting data. A carrier fleet’s CAP will engage enemy aircraft from outside that range, so your reconnaissance package needs to be able to fight or sneak its way past, a difficult task either way.

    Submarines are a whole different boat, though. That’s the real vulnerability of the carrier right now. Today’s anti-ship missiles in theory render the carrier fleet obsolete, but most countries don’t have the capabilities needed to use them effectively – the ability to detect and track the carriers from long range.

    So the DF-21’s place in Chinese strategy will probably be as a sort of artillery barrage – these are not really meant to be the killing blow, but they’ll throw the targeted fleet into panic mode and get top priority attention from the defenses, allowing aircraft, small warships, or submarines to get in close enough to attack.

  • 72. Mr. Bad  |  September 20th, 2011 at 9:32 am

    @ 67. jim

    There is no “airburst” shrapnel warhead for the DF-21, or any ballistic missile I know of and the reasons are pretty obvious if you think about it, i.e., even at the ahem, “relevant altitude” an airburst of 1000 lbs of tungsten rods traveling @ mach 10 is going to fly every which way, and if by sheer chance a couple manage to put a few holes in a carrier and kill a few people that is really not the desired outcome – which would be to SINK it. Once again, all the previous problems with accuracy rear their head – Gary was right about one thing, you need a direct hit, no conventional explosives are needed but a direct hit is needed to sink the carrier or at least knock it out of action. Some ABM do use a shrapnel warhead but the point is to knock out a delicate, unarmored missile with maximum probability – a 1/2 piece of shrapnel will likely destroy a ballistic missile in flight or render it inoperable and/or certainly knock it off course.

  • 73. atlas_lied  |  September 20th, 2011 at 10:36 am

    Mr. Bad,

    Hosting a hundred or so DF21 launchers is prohibitively expensive? Maybe. I just know it would be cheaper than the cost of a new carrier. It was Brecher’s point all along.

    But then you’re more in tune with writing long-winded jingoistic passages and concentrating on spewing personal insults than being coherent. And you’re being paid too. Enjoy that $12/hour with no benefits.

  • 74. BDV  |  September 20th, 2011 at 11:12 am

    One does not even have to sink the ship. Showering the landing strip with debris and scarring it should be enough to for a mission kill.

  • 75. atlas_lied  |  September 20th, 2011 at 11:14 am

    More and more of the comments are going off topic. The US and China aren’t going to fight, just like the Soviet Union and the US were never in any serious risk of fighting.

    A lot of the rabid nationalists, supposed anticommunist dinosaurs, veiled racists, and general misanthropes are itching for armageddon or at least war. Not gonna happen. The US may be aggressive, but it’s not flat out insane. Thus it can pick off the likes of Iraq and Libya, but avoids anyone who can fight back like Iran or North Korea.

    The War Nerd, Dolan, Ames, and many of the linked articles (e.g. Michael Hudson) have strong commonalities in their editorial stances. The continual expense of things like the carriers is emblematic of procurement corruption/kickbacks on overpriced yet useless weaponry. This constant waste, not the threat of an existential war, is dragging America down.

    The Great Leap Forward References are apt. Mao was a ruthless and gifted military commander yet inept and egotistical in peacetime. The Great Leap Forward famine was just one manifestation of this. As someone pointed out earlier, people (except for some of the weird posters here) would have been happier if Mao had died in 1956 as opposed to 1976.

    Furthermore you could make a link between the building of countless backyard steel furnaces and building countless aircraft carriers. Different time, different place, different motivation, but same idiot result. Nothing

  • 76. Michal  |  September 20th, 2011 at 11:31 am

    Good analysis, I enjoyed it.

  • 77. Mr. Bad  |  September 20th, 2011 at 2:00 pm

    @ 74. BDV

    No, the flight deck is easily repaired, within minutes in most cases, it is also armored. Do people even think before writing this stuff? An aircraft carrier is a COMBAT vessel, not a tugboat, it was designed to be bombed, torpedoed and strafed while still launching and recovering aircraft.

    @ 75. atlas_lied

    Wow, talk about changing your tune, from the DF-21 is #1 to “he US and China aren’t going to fight”. Bang up job kid, give us another?

    Personally I don’t think there will be a Taiwan straits showdown either, I think that in time the two governments will reconcile peacefully as it is ultimately in both their interests but whether or not their will be a conflict with the US or its allies or India in the Pacific is another matter altogether, I think that it may even be inevitable given our strategy in the middle east – which is designed to constrain Chinese ambitions and could provoke war the same way an “official” oil embargo did in the last century, with another rising Asian power.

  • 78. John Figler  |  September 20th, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    @ Vendetta

    1) And because of the missile’s size, hitting the DF-21 while it’s on its way up is like hitting a plane, something an Aegis defense system is capable of.

    In fact it’s easier than hitting a plane. A ballistic missile in boost phase is not usually able to dodge incoming projectiles.

    As long as they are in range. With 500kms range for the SM-3 and 185 or so kms for the shipborne AEGIS AN/SPY-1 against 900-1000 kms range for the DF-21 that leaves the AEGIS out of the context unless we are risking scant and valuable AEGIS platforms even deeper into the Chinese menace space to shoot down the DFs going up over mainland China.

    I guess the Chinese would have no trouble in moving the war tripwire a few hundred kms closer and a few ship classes lower to fit into that.

    That, of course, as long as my understanding that while hitting the upward going DFs is pretty easy, hitting the downward ones is something the AEGIS can’t do, for the time being at least, is correct.

    If the AEGIS can shoot down incoming ballistics then just back to square 1: send over as many DFs as SM-3s onboard the enemy TF plus one (make them 2/4 to account for shabby Chinese electronic manufactures).

  • 79. Frank  |  September 20th, 2011 at 4:25 pm

    Why is everyone stuck on thinking that a ballistic warhead is just a dumb projectile on its decent phase? And that the target might be able to evade by changing course; with no reaction from the warhead?

    Lookup Maneuverable reentry vehicle:

  • 80. Mr. Bad  |  September 20th, 2011 at 4:55 pm

    78. John Figler

    OK, fair point, the prospect of an Aegis intercept would mean that US carrier forces are deployed close enough to the mainland that their escorts can intercept DF-21’s during boost/mid course phase (midcourse intercept is a distinct possibility given that the SM-3 is capable of destroying SAT’s in low earth orbit) but again, there is the problem of accuracy and also targeting – i.e. the DF-21 has a range that far outstrips its targeting capability. A carrier group within range of the DF-21 is technically in play – how is it targeted, how is the info updated and how often – it would have to be second by second right up to launch! The ocean is a big place and a carrier, relatively speaking, is a speck.

    @ 79. Frank

    They are stuck on thinking it is a dumb projectile because it is, a MARV can be programmed to perform “evasive maneuvers” in its terminal phase to avoid interception but it cannot course correct – you don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about so STFU and stay off wikipedia, a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

  • 81. Mr. Bad  |  September 20th, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    Just to make it clear to the military/tech geniuses on this board – a MARV can perform evasive maneuvers to avoid interception in its terminal phase – it CANNOT perform course correction in its terminal phases that compensate for its targets evasive maneuvers – get it yet?

  • 82. FuckChina  |  September 20th, 2011 at 6:35 pm

    Btw, our trade deficit with China has been like over 2 trillion since we had the brilliant idea of letting them join the WTO.

    Forgot some dingy old Russian aircraft carrier, China knows the real trick to killing us- exploiting our greed and stupidity by making shit cheaper than anywhere else.

  • 83. A Silver Mt. Paektu  |  September 20th, 2011 at 6:38 pm

    “Imagine Russia without Stalin; no way it could’ve turned out worse.”

    The word “Lebensraum” mean anything to you, Gary?

  • 84. Rehmat  |  September 20th, 2011 at 7:19 pm

    Mao, Stalin and Kissinger are all mass murderers. However, to call them such – would irk Abraham Foxman, national director of ADL. You see, Kissinger is a Zionist Jew; Stalin was not only a ‘Crypto-Jew’, he married three Jewish women and established first Jewish state in 1934 in Russia. Mao always showed his love for Israel.

  • 85. super390  |  September 20th, 2011 at 9:08 pm

    #53 and 59;

    Chiang Kai-Shek had to lose 90% of China before he learned the lesson his US advisers were trying to teach him: Land Reform. Once he was left with the booby prize of Taiwan he carried out the land reform.

    Furthermore, before his retreat to Taiwan, his forces had brutally oppressed an uprising by the Taiwanese people and thrown many of them in prison. So during the Taiwanese economic miracle (backed by the Pentagon), the Taiwanese had no choice but to work their asses off and plot their future revenge (which eventually occurred) against his party. And he had no choice but to keep wealth decently distributed and avoid more uprisings.

    So it’s pointless dreamcasting Chiang ruling China well. He was a monster who intentionally caused a famine in the ’30s to root out the Reds which led to 40,000,000 deaths. Read Edgar Snow’s book about the living conditions of the peasants whom Chiang was so indifferent to. He also had German and Soviet military advisers before he became our loyal friend. He only reformed with two guns to his head: ours and the Taiwanese entrepreneurs who actually built his economic miracle.

  • 86. super390  |  September 20th, 2011 at 9:17 pm

    The aircraft carrier has another role that I’m surprised no one has mentioned, one the US prizes greatly. Navies like to visit foreign ports. I’m not talking about combat actions, just “friendly” visits that they call showing the flag. We all do it, though it probably worked better before nationalism had spread and the natives were just willing to obey whichever foreign wizard had the most impressive floating juju. That leads not just to coercion, but voluntary trade and invitations to foreign penetration.

    In the current context, this carrier can be a floating showroom for Chinese military exports. It’s all about the electronics these days, not the hulls. The carrier will have to be fitted with the latest radar and ECM and SAMs, and it doesn’t just have to tote around carrier-capable planes, but whatever the local dictator might want for his land-based needs.

    Not likely too many people in Ghana will go, “Hey, the USS Ronald Reagan that visited last month was over 100 feet longer and far more voluminous than this Chinese ship.” It will look equal in their eyes, and since the US has no real strategy for making new friends the Chinese can combine the entertainment with real foreign aid, the kind we can’t afford anymore.

    The irony is, this carrier may help to spread to the Fourth World those missile technologies that are already making Third World countries too dangerous for carriers to approach.

  • 87. super390  |  September 20th, 2011 at 9:28 pm

    My comment #85:

    I forgot the third gun to Chiang’s head: Mao’s. Right-wingers only treat the poor well when they fear them turning communist. Since 1991, with the communist threat gone, the entire world has seen little by little the true face of capitalism return from the robber baron days.

  • 88. Question for the nerds  |  September 21st, 2011 at 12:23 am

    Great pile o’ comments on this fine article. Always a perverted pleasure to read.

    Since there seem to be some hardware geeks floating around here, I’d like to ask about the feasibility of using LARGE thermobaric bombs as anti-naval weapons– like would it just be possible to suck enough oxygen out of the atmosphere around battleships or carriers to wreck havoc that way?

    I wouldn’t even mind seeing a good link or two about thermobaric weapons — it seems that they’re underutilized (for obvious political reasons) but potentially frighteningly effective if implemented on a larger scale than we currently see. Entire cities could be wiped out without having to go nuclear.

    Sorry if this is a derail but many of the comments hereabouts are honestly kind of batshit (aside from the occasional smartie like Ro) so I figure anything goes.

  • 89. True Kilocckian  |  September 21st, 2011 at 12:33 am

    If Mao died in 1956 there is no health care for the Chinese poor, no education for the Chinese poor, no rise in life expectancy, no rejuvenation of China.

    The cultural revolution was only bad for pampered educated city kids who had to live the life that most Chinese people still live.

    They are whiners and traitors and they will destroy China.

    China’s fucked. Their current success is because of Mao Zedong and Communism and without Communism they’ll fail.

  • 90. helplesscase  |  September 21st, 2011 at 1:02 am

    An earlier commenter joked about the possibility of Dolan/Brecher being paid off by the Chinese. Man, that would be great: one of the West’s better intellects shilling for the PRC due to lack of steady employment by the useless and cowardly Western academia as American productivity and prosperity bleed out due to total idiocy. We deserve no less.

  • 91. Junkie Joe  |  September 21st, 2011 at 5:36 am

    Don’t be so hard on the Chinese. They’re going to need SOMETHING once we legalize smack and they figure out that they can’t stop it from gettin’ into their ports …

  • 92. Cum  |  September 21st, 2011 at 7:36 am

    Attention Koch Brothers, Chinese Operatives, and Hasbara Zionists: I am an unemployed student that spends all day on the internet. I am good with words and I need money. I will write tons of posts for $12 an hour, send ME the money!

  • 93. Vendetta  |  September 21st, 2011 at 8:18 am


    It’s a fun idea to think about all the colored shirts jumping off the edge of the flight deck in flames like rats, but thermobarics stop working well once they reach a certain size.

    The proper fuel-air mix gets more diffiult to make as size increases, and the bomb will become more and more unstable. Large enough thermobarics need their own oxidizer, which loses the point of not needing oxidizer, one of the thermobaric’s main advantages. You’re better off with conventional explosives at that point.

  • 94. Gray Jay  |  September 21st, 2011 at 9:10 am

    @80 Mr Bad, there’s no need to get pissy with Frank. You’ve done very well so far laying out why, contra Dolan, a CVBG isn’t the easiest thing in the world to locate, much less destroy. While, per you, current MARVs do not have sufficient acquisition and guidance to track and impact a moving target, nothing says that such capabilities are impossible. Difficult, given the environment of an RV in terminal phase, but not impossible. Pershing II, in the early 80s, incorporated radar terminal guidance on its RV, enabling CEPs in the 50m range. While Pershing II’s intended targets—C3I bunkers—were not moving, I fail to see why something similar cannot be employed on a D-21. Despite the enviable damage control record of the USN—both Stark and Cole would have been sunk in navies that didn’t practice DC like the USN—I am not as confident as you that multiple strikes from Jim’s hypothetical “shotgun” RV wouldn’t seriously curtail operational readiness. A lot of the problem is that we really don’t know just how robust modern CVs are to battle damage, Oriskany and Forrestal fires aside. His idea is an interesting one, however, and it would be interesting to model pattern sizes and drag losses on potential subprojectiles within the DF-21’s 600kg payload.

    The most important reason why I don’t think concepts like the D-21, or the program to convert turn Trident into a conventional SSGM, is that the damn things look just like their nuclear-armed brethren in boost phase. What would NORAD think upon seeing a salvo of 100s of D-21s from subsea and surface launchers? Would they be thinking a conventional strike? Or would they be thinking that China’s leadership has completely lost it and wants to make the plot of the Fallout games a reality?

    Lastly, while PRCN SSKs have made startling, and USN career-retarding, tracks on CVBGs (see U.S.S. Kitty Hawk in 2006), the question then becomes, how does the SSK transmit its targeting fix on the CVBG to the D-21 launchers? As soon as it radios the position, or even gets into position to do so, it’s probably dead. Perhaps acoustic transmission to pre-positioned receivers on the ocean floor? Not that far-fetched, assuming the battle is close to PRC waters.

    And nothing prevents the CVBG from immediately changing its position in the lag between its last know position and D-21 RVs arriving on target. A lot depends on how much cross-range capability those RVs have, and more importantly, whether the RVs can independently acquire their targets throughout that cross-range.

    Interesting discussion none the less, and it’s good to see Brecher posting again.

  • 95. Jack Boot  |  September 21st, 2011 at 9:13 am

    @ 87 (super 390)
    Good point: That old reactionary Bismarck instituted the world’s first Gov’t old-age pension; being a practical man, he didn’t want to end his days dangling from a lamppost.

    Modern banksters, take note…

  • 96. joe-bob  |  September 21st, 2011 at 9:29 am

    A conventional ballistic antiship missile creates a useful uncertainty. It COULD have a nuke on it, but you know they have gobs of these conventional ones they put a lot of effort into creating specifically for attacking ships.

    ….and if they choose not to put a tactical nuke on there, but a rather large strategic one? Bye bye entire fleet. And it is a purely military target. Does such an attack really trigger MAD? Do you blow up millions of civilians in response to losing 15 ships or so and soldiers counted in the thousands?

  • 97. Pilot_MKN  |  September 21st, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Ah, the Lincoln Apologist speaks well of Mao.

    I wish I could say I’m shocked.

  • 98. Machak  |  September 21st, 2011 at 11:25 am

    No dice. Those bombs are huge and next to useless for sinking armed ships. USN sometimes uses ’em for that extra oomph during a SINKEX, just for shit and giggles.
    Largest thermobaric bombs (at this moment) are russian ATBIP (7 tons) and murkan MOAB (11 tons) and it takes a transport plane to lug one of those mothers around.
    So, if there’s even one crippled sailor with a Stinger, that plane is going nowhere near a carrier.

  • 99. Mr. Bad  |  September 21st, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    @ 94. Gray Jay

    You’ve made some great points, don’t mean to be pissy but getting called a Koch troll is enough to piss anyone off. The thing about the Pershing 2 is interesting but you have to understand that the accuracy it achieved was due to the fact that the on board radar compared it’s position in space to its preloaded target info, that target info is a stationary point in 3D space which a computer program can understand and use to improve the terminal trajectory in reference to it – the Pershing 2 was perfect for destroying hardened tactical targets but they were stationary and already targeted.

    As for your example that Stark and Cole would have been sunk in any other Navy, again I agree, but they weren’t in any other Navy. Slightly off topic but I want to say that while I understand the hatred and disgust people feel for this government and the DOD/Military industrial complex – I have USAF family and I’ve heard enough on that topic to last me a lifetime – I still don’t understand how intelligent people can make the jump from hating US foreign policy to deriding the capabilities of it instrument, i.e. the US Armed Forces. I am not a USA#1 person, I couldn’t care less, but those people out there who think the US armed forces, from personnel to equipment, isn’t the envy of every foreign power, friend of foe, you are seriously uninformed or just a knee jerk hater or everything American. It’s not boasting, and it is ephemeral, as Def Sec Gates notoriously pointed out – our Defense (offense) capabilities are contingent on the continued performance of our economy – which is in doubt to say the least. But in the absence of a global hegemon like GB in its heyday the world will most certainly become a much more dangerous and unpredictable place – rant over.

  • 100. The Great Poo  |  September 21st, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    Super390, #85
    Good points, though I certainly wasn’t suggesting that Chiang ever ruled “well”, just less terribly than Mao. When he took over Taiwan he in effect found his level of competence, that of a provincial warlord. And Taiwan was small enough that he didn’t have to share power with other warlords.
    I imagine a modern-day Kuomintang China would be horribly corrupt, dynamic and rich, instead of horribly corrupt, dynamic and still mostly poor-to-middling. There’d probably be a few hundred million more Chinese because there would have been no one-child policy, but in any case the birth rate by now would be that of a rich country eg low. Incidentally, I sometimes wonder if some KMT and CCP members don’t quietly fantasise about re-unifying their parties. After all, there’s no real ideological differences – in practice – any more, and they both want Chinese unification.

  • 101. Zhu Bajie  |  September 21st, 2011 at 3:31 pm

    I’m amazed at how many are still fighting the Cold War, Chiang vs Mao, pulling casualties figures out of bodily orifices! Don’t you know that the CPC and KMT have kissed and made up? Probably their negotiating the wedding right now and before you know it, China will have TWO corrupt political machines instead of only one! Just like in America!

  • 102. FuckChina  |  September 21st, 2011 at 4:22 pm

    “True Kilocckian | September 21st, 2011 at 12:33 am

    If Mao died in 1956 there is no health care for the Chinese poor, no education for the Chinese poor, no rise in life expectancy, no rejuvenation of China.

    The cultural revolution was only bad for pampered educated city kids who had to live the life that most Chinese people still live.

    They are whiners and traitors and they will destroy China.

    China’s fucked. Their current success is because of Mao Zedong and Communism and without Communism they’ll fail.”

    “is no health care for the Chinese poor, no education for the Chinese poor, no rise in life expectancy, no rejuvenation of China.”

    Are you fucking retarded 89? China only advanced economically after Mao descended into hell to take his place besides Stalin and Hitler.

    “The cultural revolution was only bad for pampered educated city kids who had to live the life that most Chinese people still live.”

    In Saudi Arabia school textbooks teach the kids to hate the Jews and blame all the problems in the world on the Jews.

    Do you even know how many tens of millions of poor peasants starved to death? You would if you didn’t believe your government’s lies that all the CR’s victims were only those “evil educated city kids.”

    I don’t know what you’ve read in your Communist Chinese textbooks but it’s jingoistic propagandistic bullshit talking point lies to make naive citizens like you blindly loyal to their government.

  • 103. Chas  |  September 21st, 2011 at 4:58 pm

    ” I don’t think you’re very familiar with “math” or probability or you wouldn’t make such an obtuse comment, they can fire off 10, 20, 100 all at once – it doesn’t appreciably improve their chance to hit the carrier – any hit would be pure luck. ”

    According to Probability (the math kind) the likelyhood of a particular outcome from some number of attempts, each with the same independent probability of success, will increase as the number of such attempts increases, e.g. 100 missiles, each with say 100:1 hit probability all pointed at the same target will result in at least one hit on that target with a fair bit of certainty

  • 104. MoMo  |  September 21st, 2011 at 5:50 pm

    The book that Becher mentioned referring to Zheng He is titled “1410”, and relates to the 15th century Chinese armada which ruled the sea, as well as circling the globe..
    Political intrigue among the Mandarin elites placed the fleet into mothballs and erased its achievements from Chinese history.. If China had an imperialistic mentality, they could have been a military super-power for the past 600 years..

  • 105. Jaime  |  September 21st, 2011 at 6:08 pm

    At the end of the day, I’m just curious how quickly the PRC can ramp up an effective CV & naval aviation tradition and skill-set and how many aircraft, air- and deck-crew they’ll lose in the process. How long has the USN been at it? 70 plus years? Given the War Nerd’s thesis, it may not really matter in any practical sense…

  • 106. super390  |  September 21st, 2011 at 6:19 pm


    The peasants of China ALWAYS died in the tens of millions. Chiang was responsible for the deaths of tens of millions. The Taiping Rebellion was responsible for the deaths of tens of millions. God knows how many died in the wars in between those two, and the Communists deserve some credit for making it unlikely to happen again. Chinese armies before Mao’s were notoriously cowardly, so they waged wars on opposition civilians by destroying the precious water distribution systems that make wet-rice agriculture possible. It takes very little to start a province-wide famine.

    You are also subscribing to the Kochsucker lie that entrepreneurs are all you need to make an economic miracle. It takes education and discipline, and Chiang had no reason to promote either; it would have created more people dedicated to overthrowing him in the cities, where he maintained control like a mobster. Mao accidentally created things that had to exist before any kind of market economy could progress. A true nationalist would ruthlessly dedicate resources to multiply scientists and engineers, to make sure that kids with technological talent get access to training regardless of their poverty…

    Wait, you probably don’t even believe that malnutrition lowers the average intelligence of poor children. So you think Chiang’s postwar China would have been like Taiwan, whose land reform came about due to Chiang’s defeat on the Mainland. It would have been like Mubarak’s Egypt, Musharraf’s Pakistan, every country in Latin America that obeyed Washington, still horribly poor after up to 40 years of taking US aid in the defense of the local landlords.

    Because as America’s bitches, all those countries lacked the one most important thing that Mao accidentally created that all the prior Great Power states had: genuine national pride. That pride can’t come from feudalism, neo-Confederate bigotry, Social Darwinism, or any other ideology rooted in the worship of gross inequality among one’s citizens. Left-wing revolutions win in countries where all the property owners view the poor as animals to be screwed or killed as necessary, where they would rather fly their kids to Andover than educate the kids in the streets, where they talk, dress and think like the “entrepreneurial” Yankees they cut deals with, and are thus foreign occupiers over their own people.

  • 107. Carpenter  |  September 21st, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    “Imagine Russia without Stalin; no way it could’ve turned out worse. Now imagine China without Mao; no way it could’ve turned out this good.”

    Again with the Soviet romanticism, War Nerd? The Soviet Union all socialists secretly drool over was a catastrophe. Stalin only continued the mass murder Lenin had started; Lenin just hadn’t built all the concentration camps in Siberia yet. Everyone was starving, freezing and miserable, and the cities were almost as dirty as the forests. With or without Stalin. They were starving before Stalin, and starving after him. Soviet GDP in 1990 was lower than that of Belgium, enough said. They only survived in the end because they secretly got grain deliveries from the United States every year. Without Stalin? They might have had Trotsky running the country, with his insane dream of “world revolution” against the hated non-Jewish goyim in Europe, invading every country within reach and imagining the Useful Idiots (that’d be the workers) would help out.

    Sucks to hear that for all commies, doesn’t it? It’s hilarious.

    As for China, Mao was a gigantic train wreck too. He killed twenty million Chinese and wrecked the economy. “Local production” meant melting down all pots and pans, all farm equipment, to make cannonballs to aim at Taiwan, the hated enemy that got blamed for everything that went wrong. All those local steel factories were completely useless. Mao was a madman. Those in the communist bureaucracy who tried to lessen the effect of his madness got killed. And then the people starved to death in the millions. By the end of Mao’s “Cultural Revolution” and “Great Leap Forward” starved corpses were littering the streets, and many people were too weak to move around, just lying there waiting to become a corpse.

    After Mao everyone hated what he had done to the country. Even among the communists, calling yourself a “Maoist” was taboo. The Maoists were the shock troops who had destroyed every factory and hospital and school with their mass arrests and trials.

    The Maoists consisted of the worst, the laziest, the most jealous and hateful school students. They put on the red cap and took the chance to beat up the students who studied hard. That’s what it was all about. Which is why lazy little communist-lovers in the West love the thought of the Red Guard and Mao. They want the chance to attack those who work for a living too.

  • 108. Strelnikov  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 12:39 am

    I second what you wrote; surface navies are what you use to intimidate/impress whichever country you want to sail to, but the real warfare happens under the sea….the Chinese have already turned one Soviet aircraft carrier into a museum, why not turn another into a floating arms bazaar that can also terrorize Taiwan?

    I noticed nobody has written a damn thing about the modern Japanese Navy – pardon me -“Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.” It may be a small navy, but the vessels are new and they are jammed to the gills with VLS* missiles. If China wished to tangle with Japan by sea, you might have another Battle of Tsushima. Or not.

    Enough with the Capitalism-Communism-“Mao has crusted blood on his hands” arguements; they go nowhere, like all Internet debates.


    * Vertical Launching System; i.e. missiles in square tubes hidden in the deck. Except for the radar guided Phalanx guns, there are no guns on their ships, just missiles and torpedo launchers.

  • 109. True Kilcockian  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 2:42 am

    @Fuck China
    You stupid fucking cunts read Amayarta Sen’s work on death rates in China and India at the time when Mao was in power.

    Mao saved tens of millions of lives.

    The only reason that China was able to industrialise so quickly is that all the kids can read and write thanks to the Communist party.

    All attempts at reform had been blocked by the ruling elite for a THOUSAND FUCKING YEARS.

    China’s current and very brief success is the monetisation and skimming off of the benefits of Communist party policies by traitors.

    China is successful (to the extent that that statement is true) because of Communism.

  • 110. True Kilcockian  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 2:43 am

    @Fuck China
    Yeah I’m fucking Chinese that’s why my user name is True Kilcockian!

  • 111. Rehmat  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 6:35 am

    Chiang Kai-Shek was an expert on human nature. Pakistan’s President, Field Marshal Ayub Khan, in his biography ‘Friends not Masters’ quoted an advice he got from the Chinese leader: “If enemies of your country start praising you, that’s a sign that you’re acting against the interests of your people. When they demonize you, it’s a sign that you’re loyal to your people”.

  • 112. FuckChina  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 8:54 am

    @TrueCock, your name and who you claim to be is irrelevant, it’s not that hard to spot sockpuppets of Communist Chinese netizens spewing their government’s propaganda. You could claim to have blonde hair and blue eyes and it would not matter.

    Truth be told I am a 900 pound Algerian woman living in a secret harem of Bill Gates.

    Of course, by your logic being as I just said this on the internet you have no choice but to blindly assume that this is 100% true.

  • 113. Mr. Bad  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 11:08 am

    @ 103. Chas

    Clearly you are a product of the American public education system. When you write:

    “the likely hood of a particular outcome from some number of attempts, each with the same independent probability of success, will increase as the number of such attempts increases, e.g. 100 missiles, each with say 100:1 hit probability all pointed at the same target will result in at least one hit on that target with a fair bit of certainty”

    First off, you assume, wrongly, that the chance to hit is in the range of 100 to 1, or even 1000 to 1, neither of which is anywhere near the probability of a hit. If you had read what I had written re: CEP (circular error probability) you would understand this but you are stupid and have your head so far up your fat ass you can watch your juicy McDouble putrifying in your guts.

    I wrote that launching “10, 20 or 100” would not “appreciably” raise the odds of a hit, douchebag, can you read? Buying 20 Powerball tickets instead of 1 increases your odds of hitting the jackpot, but not “appreciably”, dumbass. But keep buying lotto tickets, you’ll be a millionaire in no time, Chas.

  • 114. joe  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 2:01 pm

    @103 Chas

    The probability of hitting a ship with at least one missile where each missile has a 1% probability and firing 100 missiles is:1-(99/100)^100=63.4%

  • 115. Zhu Bajie  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    I don’t know what some of you’ve read in your US political education comic books but it’s jingoistic propagandistic bullshit talking point lies to make naive citizens like you blindly loyal to their government.

  • 116. rhinohorn  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 3:12 pm

    @ True Kilcockian

    The Chineese are happy with Mao the Great Leader’s legacy only because-guess what?-they do not learn in schools the truth about the years under Mao and the “Cultural Revolution”. They do not even know about the Tienanmen Square massacre of 1989.
    This is nothing new: in Hungary, before 1989, you did not learn the truth about the 1956 revolution or the 1920 Trianon Treaty for example.
    In China, under the Communist Party’s rule-what we should not forget is China is officially Communist today-the same rule applies as in all Communist countries: the workers and the peasants suck, big time.
    The Chineese Communist Party, as all the ex-Communist parties in Eastern-Europe, have taken Marx so seriously, that to counter the inevitable restoration of Capitalism, and to save the People from the return of the evil Capitalist overlords, decided on taking up the burden of Capitalist ownership: now they are the private owners of the lands and factories and all economic money-making positions.
    The workers and the peasants still suck. You know as well as I know that both are doing slave labour in China, while nature and the environment are systematically destroyed around them. No healthcare, no pension, no labour rights, slave wages-hence the “competitiveness” and “success” of today’s China.
    The only difference between China and Eastern-Europe is, when you beg to differ, like in Hungary in 2006, the ex-Commies use tear-gas and stun guns, while the Chineese comrades will happily use live ammunition.
    Thanks to Comrade Mao and the Cultural Revolution, without which China would be a country of thousands of years of culture, modernising in a civilized way.
    I wish you could live out your youth in Comrade Mao’s great socialist paradise, and you could praise his greatness live, clapping your hands with his little red book in your hand knowing its contents by heart, being able to recite it even if woken from your sweetest dream-too bad if you do not, but doing a bit of slave-work in the in-country deserts without food singing happy party-songs would revitalise your remembering capabilities.
    COMMUNISM=BAAAD! Unnerstan’?

  • 117. FuckChina  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 4:08 pm

    @116 unlike you I can admit my government is full of shit.

    We let ourselves be raped economically to the tune of several hundred billion each year….. not to mention millions of dollars

    China has exploited western corporate greed to successfully cannibalize the west. Truly the greatest ruler in the history of all of China is George W. Bush, you owe much to his mental retardation and our corporate propaganda run by massive companies trying to suck off China’s dick to be thrown a few table scraps of money.

    All I want is for Americans to wake up and smell the trade deficit and try to do something about it instead of making our future enemies increasingly more powerful.

    I don’t care about your shitty aircraft carriers, I’m sick that the raping of America goes on while Republicans pull us off a ditch and Obama insists 50% of all his ideas must include Republican ditch ideas.

    But don’t be too happy…. environmentally China has transformed into a cesspool with millions of it’s citizens infected with foul chemicals. In your quest for greed you destroyed your nation’s environmental health just as we destroyed our financial health. You may rule the future but it’s a Pyrhic victory.

  • 118. FuckChina  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 5:21 pm

    (Typo, millions of jobs I meant, was referring to the Chinese economic Satanic miracle of America standing by and allowing it’s prosperity to be cannibalized in the name of Communism.)

  • 119. joe  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 6:18 pm

    @81. Mr. Bad

    “a MARV can perform evasive maneuvers to avoid interception in its terminal phase – it CANNOT perform course correction in its terminal phases that compensate for its targets evasive maneuver”

    Let me get this straight. A MARV is able to dodge missiles fired at it but it can’t change coarse to hit a 1500 ft target going 40 knots. Thanks for clearing that up. I think I speak for everyone when I say I am glad you can contribute your insight to this conversation.

  • 120. VPC  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 6:59 pm

    The Taiwan inherited by Cks had advantages that would not have been the case with Mainland China, such as advanced Japanese-built industry and infrastructure that hadn’t been destroyed, a relatively small population with a relatively large educated workforce, and, of course, billions in aid and other administrative, institutional and preferential trade support from Uncle $ugar. And CKS is reviled by most Taiwanese waishungren — to say nothing of the loathing felt by Taiwanren — as a megalomaniacal, bumbling, bloodthirsty, syphilitic fool.

  • 121. VPC  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 7:24 pm

    Chinese people are different from you and me in that they mutuallyconceive of themselves as a people who were united as a nation exactly 2,222 years ago. And

    Oh, and even my KMT relatives — family members of whom died in PRC labour camps — take a rather nuanced view of Mao, saying “Dynastys fall and there are always internecine struggles. The man who manages to clear the field of competition and reunify the nation becomes the first emperor of the new dynasty, and is deserving of an honourable place in history commensurate with the long term outcome of the dynasty.”

    Imagine how silly some western behaviour must seem to a people who have such a shared identity and historical perspective.

  • 122. Combat_Wombat  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 8:00 pm

    I don’t see why you couldn’t widen a ballistic missiles kill area by making it break up into, say, 50kg tungsten bars in the terminal phase. I mean a 50kg bar hitting at mach 10 would be a bad day for any ship, it might not sink but it would punch through any protection and cause alot of secondary fragmentation as it punched through the layers of deck.

    Also shooting down satellites in stable orbits would be dicey. Since those satellites are in stable orbits, so would be their debris. The Chinese shoot down one satellite and it increased the space junk by a third. You shoot down a couple dozen satellites and you’d have a real risk of starting a chain reaction where the debris hits another satellite, making more debris, hitting another satellite, etc etc. Space is big, but most satellites use a handful of useful orbits. And I’m sure the Chinese and Americans have spy satellites flagged as commercial or non military satellites, or maybe even as other nationalities.

    If the Chinese and Americans start knocking down satellites it could easily make the most useful satellite orbits unusable for decades or longer. Which would have more real economic impact then, say, any limited war over the South China Sea or Taiwan.

  • 123. VPC  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 8:07 pm

    Three observations about the DF-21:
    1. Air burst would seem conterproductive, as the DF-21 is a “kinetic” weapon, meaning its “explosive” yield is a funtion of mass and velocity. Exploding an RV above its target would serve to reduce both the mass and the velocity. Admittedly, I wouldn’t want to be in the blast radius, but I don’t think the shrapnel would be nearly as effective at downing a carrier.
    2. I always thought the purpose of MIRVs was to provide saturation fire, comparable in effect to the difference between a bullet and a shotgun blast.
    3. Any math geniuses out there able to calculate the impact of a DF-21 RV hitting the water at mach 9? Would it be capable of tipping a carrier that is floating 50 feet to port? If so, then you can calculate the size of a DF-21’s kill zone for a carrier strike at 1600 square feet. Seems to me that’s a pretty big bullet. If it has even a modicum of steering capability, I’m starting to like its odds of success. Am I missing something here?

  • 124. DrunktankDan  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Goddamn that was one hell of a fuckin comments section. The parallel debates (Mao was good! No he was bad!-DF21 Works!No it doesn’t) made reading it pretty schizophrenic at times. . .but for the most part everyone seemed marginally educated on their respective subjects, but there was still enough ad hominem shit talking to keep it funny. Mr. Bad. . .where did you learn all of that shit?

  • 125. VPC  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 8:28 pm

    I wonder if I could persuade those Taiwanese news animation folks to do a slow-mo sim of a DF-21 hitting the water a mile away from a CBG. After a flash of light and an incalulably large shockwave, a wall of boiling seawater 300 Feet high swamps everything in a 5 mile radius, and seconds later the twisted wreckage of the Ronald Reagan CBG is sucked down the whirlpool to Davy Jones’ Locker.

    Not saying I know ^that’s what a DF-21 strike would look like, but ^that would be cool to see, and a damn sight more interesting than Elin Nordstrom swinging a golf glub at a car window.

  • 126. ☭ mouse ☭  |  September 22nd, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    @87 Truth.

    @112 You pigs won, Why are you still bitching ? You got what you wanted! Communism fell, and now, just in case you haven’t been following current events going on in the world – global capitalism is failing as well. third world poverty is coming to the first world as the capitalists look for cheaper (slave) labor ! Its like reverse maoism

  • 127. Combat_Wombat  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 12:09 am

    Any explosion to seperate the rods could be relatively small, at those speeds you’d just need to slightly damage the structural intergrity of the missile and the aerodynamics would do the rest of the job, look at how the Space Shuttle Challenger broke apart at those speeds (it didn’t actually explode, it was torn apart by aerodynamic stress after its structure was weakned).

    Of course if you want to sink a carrier for sure a direct hit by a ballistic missile would certainly do that, but if you can’t hit it directly, a rain of rods would be likely to damage any of the dozen systems a carrier needs for operations, and then would need to limp for home.

    In any case it would be part of a combination of weapon systems, (submarines, stealthish J-20 fighters, cruise missiles, mines, small missile boats), which would combine to make a credible threat to any American carrier group in the event of a conflict and thus restrict its freedom of action (or as war nerd says, make it sit at port). Which is presumably the Chinese plan. Of course these weapons are unlikely to be used, but even just the threat could be useful.

  • 128. Mr. Bad  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 4:39 am

    @ 119. joe

    An MARV does not “dodge” anything, it has an evasion program (algorithm) if follows to make interception more difficult.

    @ 123. VPC

    I would think that like anything else weighing 1000lbs and traveling @ mach 10 the DF-21D RV would disintegrate upon impact with the ocean surface, it might swamp all the rubber duckies in the vicinity but that would be about it.

    Look, we know the DF-21D is operational and that the 2nd Artillery is developing doctrine for their use, other than that it’s all speculation, including and most importantly as to the tech used in the seeker – nobody knows and the PLA aren’t talking except to say that they can usually hit slow moving targets – whoopdefuckingdoo. A carrier at 30 knots travels three boat lengths in a minute and a MARV cannot be steered like a cruise missile, the Chinese have spent a lot of time researching the problems of “wavy” trajectories with ballistic missile systems (i.e. degraded accuracy)without demonstrating any great technological leaps.

    IMO they are still 5-10 years from having the targeting and deployment capability to effectively blockade Taiwan/deny US CSG’s the western pacific – revisit this topic then.

  • 129. Dejo  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 6:20 am

    I imagine if Chiang Kaishek had won then he would’ve united China, dealt with the warlords, put the foreigners in their place and done all that without tens of millions of Chinese pointlessly losing their lives. Plus he wouldn’t have supported North Korea. So Mao ruined two nations. Only now, after the Chinese have abandoned his ridiculousness in all but name, are they finally getting back onto their feet.

  • 130. atlas_lied  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 7:46 am

    @VPC and others,

    I don’t understand the Chiang Kai-Shek love either. The guy was inept and cruel, as opposed to Mao, who at least had some acumen on the battlefield and got rid of the warlords before succumbing to well… hubris and megalomania and ineptitude and cruelty. Chiang was the EXACT same thing until a few years into his exile into a more manageable situation in Taiwan. A lot of the more rightwing commenters here aren’t knowledgeable of the situation of Taiwan up until the very recent past. It was essentially a third world pit; infamous for counterfeiting, people disappearing in the night, and a haven for foreign companies seeking to exploit pliant labor. Much of China’s state guided develoopment parallels the paths taken by the former tigers. At least it’s better than the neoliberal Washington consensus.


    Okay Okay, we get it. You’re an American nationalist. One tip, it’s not them, it’s us. The Reagan/Thatcher/Pinochet/Neoliberal revolution wasn’t driven by nefarious Chinese operatives in Washington, it was the result of lobbying/corruption by the FIRE industry and domestic billionaires. If you went back further in time, say to post Civil-War America, you’d see the selective protectionism and undercutting of the then-developed economies was part of America’s development.

    @Mr. Bad.

    I kinda figured you’d be a military meathead. It explains why you suspend whatever sense you have to continually ply us with reasons why a US carrier group would survive a missile attack. Your reasoning was already countered by Brecher, Admiral Von Ripen, and a host of other war nerdish resources.

    Furthermore you rehash the BS neocon/Newt Gingrich/Reaganite/PNAC reasoning for American hegemony being a force for good. Think of the post-Soviet era. America had free reign. Look at the needless and endless wars, think of inflated military budgets draining everything else. Unless you’re a military contractor, has your life as an American benefited from the past two decades of hegemony?

    btw, Dolan has already written about Aircraft Carriers and Mao.

    check out the Von Ripen article, and check out Dolan’s review “Mao meets the Addams family.”

  • 131. True Kilcockian  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 8:14 am

    You stupid fucking cunt Mao Zedong and the Communist Party of the PRC saved 10s of millions of lives. Read Amartya Sen’s work on long term trend death rates in China and India you innumerate shit.

    China’s current success is the monetisation of PRC reforms.
    The policies of the Chinese Communist Party saved far more lives than they cost.
    The Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution was a golden age for most Chinese people and the only people whining are traitors, failed foreign academics and stuck up city kids who are probably the grandchildren of the traitors who have been fucking China over since the fucking Turks took Northern China in the 6th Century or whatever it was.

    Chiang Kai Shek was a fucking loser. The Japs would still run China if he’d been around and the Chinese film industry would be whatever porn Japanese girls won’t do.

    Under the Communists even a lowly worker like a fireman can have sex slaves. That is a true workers paradise. How many sex slaves have you?

  • 132. Vendetta  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 8:17 am

    @ Combat_Wombat: Yes, shooting down satellites does do that. Wold that stop the US or China from doing it? No.

    @ Dejo: Well, I imagine he wouldn’t have.

    @ Everyone spouting this tunsten shrapenel nonsense: it’s nonsense. If you blow a missile at high altitude to get a shotgun pattern, by the time these shards of tungsten reach the surface the spread of tiny missiles will be so wide, you’ll be lucky to hit a damn thing at all. And no, a carrier will not be put out of action by one or tow of those things hitting.

    And someone more capable of the calculations can tell me about the effects of an impact of a DF-21 hitting the ocean. My guess is, super-tsunami does not result. Big splash, but no 300 foot wave.

  • 133. Combat_Wombat  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 9:39 am

    I think people are underestimating the kinetic power of mass. A ballistic missile would be the equivalent of an small asteriod, it would make waves. A hail of tungsten rods would be the equivelent of a hail of those railgun rounds the US navy is trying to develop. Which they say would be far more powerful then a battlship shell. In any case I think a whole ballistic missile to kill one carrier would be like using a sledgehammer to kill a fly, massive overkill.

    And who said you’d discharge the rods at high altitude? You could do it at 1km above the battlegroup if your electronics are good enough.

    Of course you’d need to locate the carrier first, which is where the submarines, stealthy fighters, etc would have to come in. This weapon wouldn’t be deployed by itself, war doesn’t work that way.

  • 134. Gray Jay  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 10:51 am

    In a hurry, so this’ll be brief.

    Assume, worst-case, that the full payload of the D-21 (600 kg) is moving at mid-phase speed (~15,000 MPH, ~Mach 20 at sea level, or around 6700 m/s) at impact. You get a KE of around 13 GJ. TNT has a chemical energy of about 4.5 GJ/ton. So the impact energy is about that of detonating 3.5 tons of TNT. Or, about 1 to 1.5 Tallboys, considering the Tallboy was filled with 2.5 tons of, IIRC, Torpex.

    Worst-case, as the warhead will be smaller than the payload mass, and atmospheric drag will be slowing the RV a good deal below Mach 20. The more manuvering the RV has to do, the slower it’s going to go. The smaller the RV, the slower too; as the drag from the shock front is proportional to the area of the projectile, which goes up much faster, relative to volume, the smaller the projectile. We already have data from what happens when Tallboys hit and miss a big ship (Tirpitz). Bad things when it hits; a big splash when it misses.

  • 135. Mr. Bad  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 11:41 am

    @ 130. atlas_lied

    Just checking in to vent, get some blood flowing back into your epeen? OK, now come back with something relevant to say.

    @ 127. Combat_Wombat

    Look, hate to be a dick but absolutely nothing you have written has any basis in reality, I don’t have the patience to explain in depth why your “tidal wave” hypothesis and “tungsten rod” ideas are ridiculous but please take my word for it – they are.

    The idea of using “sub munitions” is a POSSIBILITY, but according to what we know of the DF-21D so far there is every indication that sub munitions would be the furthest from the ideal weapon for use on one the DF-21D weapon system, and in keeping with PLA 2nd artillery doctrine the most likely non-lethal load (by that I mean not a ship killer) would be an EMP weapon – there is a high probability that such a warhead will soon be available. This is the major concern right now – but you knew that already, right?

  • 136. FuckChina  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    Bwahahaha! You’re not even bothering to pretend you’re an Irish whiteboy anyway are you?

    I feel sorry for how brainwashed you are. All people should mistrust their government but you Chinese have been raised to be so serf-like that you’ll jump off any cliff or eat any lead-poisoned food that your masters tell you to.

    And @130 yeah, you’re 100% right. Our politicians and CEOs are all greedy, stupid assholes who’ve sold out this entire country to the godless mass of evil that is Communism. But that’s “free trade” for ya.

  • 137. joe  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    @128 Mr Bad

    You seem to think that the DF-21 has no guidance system at all other than an inertial system. I don’t claim to know what capabilities it has. But it does seem relatively easy(especially when you have all the tea in china)to build a radar guidance system that can identify a ship on a backdrop of water and home in on the largest blip. As far as the ship speed goes, I don’t care if its going 120kt its still slow compared to a missile.

  • 138. Pat Kittle  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 4:15 pm

    Frontal-view photos of carriers look like optical illusions, don’t they?

    Don’t carriers look impossibly top-heavy?

  • 139. joe  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 5:39 pm

    @134. Gray Jay

    I believe the the reentry speed is more like mach 10. So that would quarter your KE. That’s still a pretty big bang. It probably wouldn’t sink since it would hit above the water line. If they use a kinetic penetrator I imagine it would plow clean through the ship and come out the bottom. Since the ship is compartmentalized this would not sink her but you’d get secondary explosions and a big mess. Ether way you got a fairly good chance of a mission kill or mobility kill but the ship would be salvageable.

    [As far as going through the ship I am not pulling that out of my ass:
    Given the size and displacement of a Nimitz class carrier, if you melted it down to its footprint you’d get a sheet of steel about 85 cm thick. Given the relative density’s of tungsten and steel and given Sir Newtons approximation( you would require a tungsten rod only 35 cm long. Its penetration depth would depend on what it hit though. If it hit an large mass like a nuclear pile it would stop.]

    Here’s my rundown If I was a bookie:
    Chance of a hit: 80%/missile
    mission kill w/ HE warhead: 70%/missile
    mobility kill w/ HE warhead: 5%/missile
    mission kill w/ penetrator: 60%/missile
    mobility kill w/ penetrator:20%/missile

  • 140. super390  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Well, no other decent conversations going on, might as well drag out this one.

    FuckChina and the other China-bashers, we’re bringing back prison slave labor in America. ALEC represents the true agenda of the Right’s sponsors, and it’s preparing the way for mass privatization, which will allow private prison owners to use their inmates as slaves to finish off our jobs. Meanwhile, intellectual property laws are turning into a police state of their own, interfering with our lives in more and more ways. The rich are grabbing more and more of America’s wealth and creating fake science to justify eliminating minimum wage, pollution, safe drug and food and workplace safety laws. And religion uses capitalist mind-control methods to shepherd the people back to Dark Ages ignorance and moral oppression. The Far Right is already working on overturning the 14th Amendment, without which there’s really nothing to stop a state government from taking the vote away from black people or throwing them all in for-profit labor camps.

    So where are people really free? Where is this magic free enterprise liberty that Kocksuckers bray endlessly about? Colombia? Israel? Somalia? Hell, they have socialized medicine in Japan, Taiwan and South Korea now.

    Have any of you stopped to consider the possibility that five years from now China will have fewer slave laborers per capita than the USA, or fewer political prisoners? Or that they will actually have more voice in their government?

    As long as we believe only good things about ourselves, and only bad things about the outside world, there is nothing to stop all of this from coming about.

  • 141. Dejo  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    131: The Cultural Revolution is irrelevant. I was referring to the Great Leap Forward. And Mao only took from the Japanese what they surrendered to him in 1945. His hit and run tactics were even less decisive than Chiang Kaishek’s. It was great for him and his military since they were weaker but not so great for those under Japanese occupation in Shanxi and other provinces. You can look at the casualties of both forces and see who was doing the real fighting.

    132: Well he was doing that before the Japanese invaded and I imagine he would’ve continued it once the Japanese surrendered if he didn’t have to deal with Mao. Mao was the better commander and I guess that’s what counts in the end.

  • 142. Brewer  |  September 24th, 2011 at 1:22 am

    Ferchrissakes Gary, when you gonna get around to Frank Herbert’s Dune and the Libya thing? Its all there – greening the desert, the warring houses the resource.

    Get on the stick man.

  • 143. Poing  |  September 24th, 2011 at 12:27 pm

    At this point I almost think the USA deserves to perish under the weight of its own bluster and self-serving ignorance.

  • 144. Pat Kittle  |  September 24th, 2011 at 6:11 pm

    @ “super390”:

    Not only the Far Right has a big problem with (at least the present interpretation of) the 14th Amendment.

    That Amendment was intended to benefit freed black slaves after the Civil War. It was NOT intended to let anyone & everyone on Earth move here illegally, crank out “anchor babies” and then boo-hoo their way to amnestied citizenship.

    Think about the implications of that — we’re talking about BILLIONS of people here.

  • 145. Rehmat  |  September 24th, 2011 at 8:11 pm

    @Brewer – Qaddafi did make much of desert green but he also spent $200 billion to establish three Arican loan institutions to free African countries of IMF. You remember how Sarkozy brought a regime change in IMF?

  • 146. Phoenix Woman  |  September 24th, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    FC@136: If TC’s faking it, then he’s being awfully diligent about it — he uses the same user name on Irish fora:

  • 147. Amos  |  September 25th, 2011 at 4:56 am

    Your family sounds fucked. That explains allot.

  • 148. True Kilcockian  |  September 25th, 2011 at 5:15 am

    @Fuck China
    Mao Tse Tung isn’t in government in China you stupid septic.

  • 149. rhinohorn  |  September 25th, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    @ True Kilcockian,

    Do I understand correctly:
    today the Chineese Government/Chineese Communist Party realised the PR importance of the internet, and emplyos either paid commenters, or chineese university students, to roam intenet forums and blogs, and post pro-Communist China and Mao-apologist comments, and you are one of these?

  • 150. atlas_lied  |  September 25th, 2011 at 1:38 pm


    F-China is pretty much an idiot.

    Hard to conflate Mao-era China with the authoritarian yet economically progressive present-day China, but he still does it.

    @Mr. Bad, the next time one of your inbred military relatives turns to cannon fodder, I’m sure the 6 o’clock news will run a maudlin tribute, then immediately switch over to human interest stories and right wing economic shills and their “theories” about austerity.

    The whole crux of Brecher’s original argument was that the low brow Chinese carrier will just result in even more useless and wasteful spending by the US Navy. He also added that weapons/tactics like the DF 21 and swarms of anti ship missiles will sink any exposed naval vessel. And, because the American military/government leadership is so corrupt with procurement and future career advancements in the private sector, this waste will go on.

  • 151. FuckChina  |  September 25th, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    @148 and 150 “China’s economy only grew after he (Mao) died…. besides that, Taiwan’s was able to grew remarkably under K-S without causing so much misery and suffering to the people.

  • 152. VPC  |  September 25th, 2011 at 7:39 pm

    @151 Mr. Bad:

    You’re not acknowledging the money and effort the US put into developing Taiwan’s economy, nor do you acknowledge the large infrastructure and resource pool available to Taiwan after the war relative to Mainland China.

    Plus, CKS was at least as tyrannically minded as Mao, but probably not as good at his job. But yeah, Mao’s acumen as a development economist seems to have been absent following his consolidation of power.

  • 153. FuckChina  |  September 25th, 2011 at 9:39 pm

    @149 Ding ding! Chinese Commie propaganda is good enough that the youth there are blindly brainwashed into doing whatever their government says, including spending time cultivating identities online to mask their agenda,

    When an idiot starts being the lone voice praising China saying something like, “China represents 1/5 of humanity and represents hope and promise for the human race” it’s pretty blatantly obvious. (I’ve read that one a few times, lol, “1/5 of humanity”)

    @152 You’re, right, those were tremendous advantages! But don’t forget, Mainland Commie China had plenty of Japanese factories they over-ran as well as Soviet aid. Mao had those things and all he could show for them was 30+ million dead Chinese and a bunch of unborn idiot Commie internet sockpuppets bragging that all the dead were spoiled rich people who had it coming. Even if the situations had been switched (with Mao on Taiwan) I somehow doubt Taiwan would have developed as much under Mao’s mad rule.

  • 154. True Kilcockian  |  September 26th, 2011 at 1:05 am


    Do I understand correctly rhinohorn that the government of the future flat radioactive sheet of glass Taiwan blackmail pedophiles who they catch on holiday in Cambodia in order to get them to defend that colossal failure Chiang Kai Shek?

    Any numerate analysis of death rates in China under the period that it was actually communist as contrasted with previous data in China or comparable countries like India and Indonesia (as opposed to France which the Kochsucking capitalamites use as the ‘standard’) shows that life expectancy and infant mortality rates were much better in China (assuming by better you mean more living babies and longer lives).

    The cultural revolution was necessary in order to destroy the class that had destroyed china repeatedly and those pampered scumbags complaining about it now are complaining about having to live like everyone else in China.

    As for the destruction of cultural artifacts who gives a shit? That’s happened loads of times in China and in Europe; everywhere that’s old and that has lots of people will destroy old culture all the time.

    As for sockpuppets. I understand that Kochsucker capitalimites like you get paid to surf the web (presumably in the fresh shit of hunky guys like me) but if the PRC government employed sockpuppets they would attack Mao and the Cultural revolution. The current government of the PRC are traitors who are monetising the achievements of Chairman Mao in order to skim off for themselves as much as they can.

    That’s why China is indeed fucked the cultural revolution did not go far enough.

  • 155. theangryphilosopher  |  September 26th, 2011 at 10:11 am

    Gary, you’re forgetting the obvious alternate explanation, which in my opinion is more likely than the scenario you constructed: that China is simply starting to buy into the carrier crap that the US has going and will soon be fielding its very own fleet of floating coffins.

    One good way to find out I guess is if they export the DF-21. If they do, they can’t be serious about carriers. Then again, the US kept on using carriers even though we exported the Harpoon, so actually they could.

    PS: to everyone who says DF-21 isn’t going to be accurate enough: (1) these things are so much cheaper than a carrier that one hit out of a hundred is still a success. (2) read the bit about “metal rods” and “area attack”. (3) China has some damn fine engineers. If the old Russian Styx could hit the Eilat, the DF-21 can hit a carrier.

  • 156. Half Sigma  |  September 26th, 2011 at 12:21 pm

    As others have written, the Chinese aircraft carriers will be used to take over third-world countries in Africa. They are very effective for that purpose.

  • 157. rhinohorn  |  September 26th, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    @ 154 True Kilcockian

    1. Taiwan has a cool goa trance/psytrance scene, while I saw a film about the nightlife of Shanghai of PRC, supposed to be the coolest place, and in the best clubs there was only shit disco music. That in itself speaks volumes of which is the better country.

    2. I am pretty much sure that the death and life expectancy statistics were oversaw by the Communist party. I’m with Winston Churchill on that one: I only believe in statistics I faked myself.

    3. In Commie China the kids of the powerful Communist functionaries close to the fire are getting rich, and nobody in the Party gives a fuck about the peasants and the workers sucking the dick big time. Same old, same old.

    4. Destroying one’s own culture is spitting on the graves on one’s ancestors, and results in the loss of one’s cultural identity. Old is good, new is shit-that is evident from history.

    5. Welcome to the wonderful world of Communists and the Communist Parties. Traitors, my ass. You, son, really did swallow the marxist crap the Commies spewed, about how they were on about making life better for the workers and the peasants? LOL, LOL, big fucking LOL! Grow up kid! The Commies like Moose Dung (Comrade Mao) were primitive mass-murderer bastards, period.
    Moose Dung and the Chineese Communist Party advised to Kádár János in 1956 to execute minimum 20,000 Hungarian “counter-revolutionaries”, for that alone I am ready to shit on the grave of that little yellow bastard Mao, pardon my French.

  • 158. True Kilcockian  |  September 26th, 2011 at 3:01 pm

    1 Goa Tlance? Me so solly it not 1994 anymore. Solly. Your next step is blakebeat.
    Disco’s back fool.

    2 You can figure out death rates from how many people are alive at a given time. If I could be with Churchill I would be too 30% off my car insurance (insulance) sounds great.

    3 There is no commie china you thick cunt. Ding Xioaping killed it because he was a Chinese nationalist. The government of the PRC is monetising the benefits of the revolution so they can skim as much as possible off.
    We can only hope that the glorious Chinese people kill enough of the fuckers in the next revolution to save their country.

    4 Me so solly for pitting in glave of honolable ancestor. Perhaps linohorn will tell humble Kilcockian where in China linohorn ancestor are buried and I will shit there.

    Anyone from a real country (one more than a couple of hundred years old that isn’t someone else’s graveyard literally shits in their ancestors grave every day.

    5 Mao was right the hungarians should have shot 100,000 of the traitors, In America about 300 million should do it.

  • 159. FuckChina  |  September 26th, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    So TrueCock, you’ve advocated genocide against Taiwan, America and against Taiwanese protesters.

    Congratulations, I’m sure your country would be proud of you. Tell me, are you one of Muu Dung’s many illegitimate children he fathered with virgins he coercively raped during the famines he created by offering to bribe their families because he believed fucking virgins would make him live longer?

  • 160. FuckChina  |  September 26th, 2011 at 3:48 pm

    Hungarian protesters.

    Now, I’m not sure why you hate America (we’re the ones financing all your success right now) but why are you so anxious to nuke Taiwan and have the Commies massacre thousands of Hungarians?

  • 161. Zhu Bajie  |  September 26th, 2011 at 4:24 pm


    Stalin hauled all the factories in Manchuria back to Siberia, along with the Japanese technicians. Chiang had J. factories, railroads, schools, etc., when he took over Taiwan.

  • 162. FuckChina  |  September 26th, 2011 at 6:31 pm

    Ah I see. Well good for Stalin then, though China’s lengthy impoverishment under Muu Dung can’t be blamed solely on the lack of Japanese factories.

  • 163. Zhu Bajie  |  September 26th, 2011 at 6:52 pm

    Some of the commentators seem so ate up with partisanship, they’ve lost contact with reality! Chiang Kai-shek was so f***ed up, even some of the warlords were better! Zhang Zuolin, Long Yun, at least did some development in their regions, like railroads and highways. In the end, Chiang lost because so many of his generals switched sides!

    The greatest wasted opportunity in ROC history was when Zhang Xueliang had Chiang at his mercy and did NOT cut his head off!

  • 164. FuckChina  |  September 26th, 2011 at 11:30 pm

    Fyi, Nationalist forces did most of the fighting in China during WW2.

    Muu Dung simply laid back, grew his forces, and allowed countrymen to blame everything going wrong on the main man in charge. (K-S)

    Due to an unholy miracle, the Soviets were able to swoop in near the end of the war -when it was about to end regardless- when the Japanese forces had devolved into paper tigers. The Chinese Commies were being given undue credit when it was mostly Nationalist Chinese resistance and American naval superiority which primarily defeated the Japanese.

    After that, wherever the Soviets “liberated” all credit was given to the Commies.

    So, with depleted men, all the blame heaped on K-S, and with that fat bastard Muu Dung getting praise, love and Soviet support the dirty Commies were able to rape the country thoroughly and starve tens of millions.

    Decades later, brainwashed Communist sockpuppets would flock to the internet to declare Muu Dung a saint and all his victims as fat spoiled rich bastards that had it coming. They’d try to conceal their identities by pretending to be whiteboys on other forums though their strong desire to enact a “final solution” against those (imagined) rat-like Taiwanese would showcase their true Commie colors.

  • 165. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 3:34 am

    “Nationalist forces did most of the fighting in China during WW2”

    often with swords and spears, since Chiang kept the good stuff in Nanjing, to protect himself from his generals, like Zhiang Xueliang. Lots of said generals and troops switched sides in the Civil War, which is why Chiang fled to Taiwan.

  • 166. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 4:18 am

    Correction: Chiang kept the goodies in Chongqing. He abandoned Nanjing to the Japs and the well-known Rape of Nanjing.

  • 167. Vendetta  |  September 27th, 2011 at 7:07 am

    FuckChina seems to have no concept of sarcasm. Lot of people seem to have no concept of the fact that you can’t put use the DF-21 for a goddamn airburst with tungsten rods.

    This comment section sucks. Time for a new Brecher piece to start this over again.

  • 168. Carney  |  September 27th, 2011 at 9:28 am

    1) @96JoeBob, you took the words out of my mouth.

    2) Any competent Russian leader would have been far better against Hitler than Stalin was. Stalin devastated the officer class with his purges, refused to listen to the overwhelming evidence that Hitler was going to attack (thinking, in his paranoia, that it was all a British trick), refused to let him troops retreat to avoid being surrounded, etc. His brutality had been such that the Germans were greeted with flowers and joy in the Ukraine, and pro-German collaborationist armies popped up immediately, as did deserting Russian troops.

    Contrary to popular belief, Russia could and would have industrialized without Lenin or Stalin, and faster and more effectively. (Again, look at the two Germanys, Koreas, and Chinas).

    So, to sum up, with no Stalin: no purged inexperienced officer corps terrified of taking the initiative. Military fully ready for German attack. Armies allowed to retreat to exploit Russia’s strategic depth. High morale, loyal population.

    3) @106 Super390, you mention IQ. And environmental conditions such as nutrition can indeed affect it. But genes matter too. And Northeast Asians have an average IQ of around 105, way above the average IQ in Pakistan or Latin America (85), let alone black Africa (70).

    4) Re the carriers can intimidate the poor countries thesis. Our carriers, yes. The Kuznetsov class, not so much. The Russian ship has some modified Su-25s for ground attack. The mujaheddin inflicted pain on those with Stingers.

    But I know of no Chinese ground attack aircraft that is being made carrier capable. Their Su-33s will be equipped solely for air to air to save weight (otherwise no takeoff capability because no steam catapult). So – how do you push around a Third World country? Yeah your Su-33s can shoot down their MiG-21s, assuming the latter are dumb enough to venture beyond their air defense network and come out to fight over open water. Then what? No way to bomb them. Sonic booms over the capital, hoping AAA and SAMs don’t make your expensively trained pilot into double-cooked pork in a flaming can?

  • 169. FuckChina  |  September 27th, 2011 at 11:10 am

    KS did a lot of good in fighting the Japanese, even though his war tech couldn’t match theirs at the time. (btw, the first big victory was one

    But, as they say, history is written by the winners, and most Chinese only know the history written by Muu Dung’s serfs.

    Btw, funny story. When Muu Dung normalized relations with Japan he suppressed making too big a deal out of the Massacre of Nanjing. As a pure psychopath with the blood of tens of millions on his hands, Mao was more interested in pursuing a more diplomatic/economic relationship with Japan rather than trying to make them pay for their past crimes- after all, Muu Dung knew a thing or two about killing and torturing millions of people and he had little guilt for his actions so why blame others he thought.

    It was only after Muu Dung passed and less Manson-esque leaders took over that it became an issue in China again.

  • 170. FuckChina  |  September 27th, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    @167 Maybe my hatred of China seems pretty over the top to you. However, it’s a fact America’s sacrificed trillions of dollars and millions of jobs to China.

    If all Americans- especially politicians- held as much contempt for China as I do then we’d economically be in much better shape today and not be in this so-called “Great Recession.”

  • 171. BDV  |  September 27th, 2011 at 1:38 pm

    Given the low tolerance of US equipment to debris (think F.O.D. walks) I’m highly doubtful a tungten shower (IF chinks can actually deliver it) would be easily tolerated. In the heat of the battle, ahving the aircraft carrier out for a couple hours can be devastating. At Midway, the window of yank opportunity/Jap vulnerability was what? 15 minutes? 10?

    After the enemy aircraft is outta way, Крокодилc can take over 🙂

  • 172. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 8:44 pm

    @170 “Maybe my hatred of China seems pretty over the top to you. However, it’s a fact America’s sacrificed trillions of dollars and millions of jobs to China.”

    Be sure to blame everyone but yourself, and your fellow Jingoists, FC! After all, it wasn’t YOUR fault that you and your fellows have spent the last 60 years wasting money, energy, ingenuity, etc., on a new war every year! It’s China’s fault! They save, when you squander! They study math and science while you study dope and video games! It’s sooo unfairrrr!

  • 173. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 8:44 pm

    @170 “Maybe my hatred of China seems pretty over the top to you. However, it’s a fact America’s sacrificed trillions of dollars and millions of jobs to China.”

    Be sure to blame everyone but yourself, and your fellow Jingoists, FC! After all, it wasn’t YOUR fault that you and your fellows have spent the last 60 years wasting money, energy, ingenuity, etc., on a new war every year! It’s China’s fault! They save, when you squander! They study math and science while you study dope and video games! It’s sooo unfairrr!

  • 174. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 8:48 pm

    “you mention IQ”

    IQ measures how much someone has mastered of a standardized curriculum, NOT intelligence. It was invented to help French school teachers decide what subjects to emphasize more next semester, not to divide humanity into sheep and goats, smart and dumb.

  • 175. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    Claiming that Peanuthead (Chiang Kai-shek) was “better” than the Great Helmsman is sort of like claiming cat shit tastes better than dog shit. It’s a distinction without a difference.

  • 176. Zhu Bajie  |  September 27th, 2011 at 9:02 pm

    “Why the fuck does every politician in this country deep-throat China and ignore how they’ve raped us economically?”

    @63 Actually, you’ve been screwed, blued and tatooed by the Reptilian Party and each of its 3 factions (religious fanatics, racists, robber barons). Blaming the Chinese for your own foolishness is like tithing to an evangelist, wondering why he’s rich and you’re poor, then blaming parakeets.

  • 177. rhinohorn  |  September 27th, 2011 at 10:51 pm

    @ 158. True Kilcockian,

    If you tell me in ’94 the Chineese raved in the forests on goa I’ll laugh at you. Prove it!
    Besides, you may thank the new leadership-who are commies-that they allow the chineese youth to rave on designer drugs. In Hungary, there were no drugs before the commies went.
    What is wrong with the ’90s? Everything was better then. Disco coming back? Time to hang all the communists then, its their fault.

    Teng is nationalist? Hip-hip-hurray. I am one, too. These are the coolest people. You’re lucky, the nationalists are the only people who care about the well-being of their own folks, unlike internationalist Commies, devil rot the red fucks.
    Take a look around you in China. See the millions of poor? The difference between now and Mao’s rule is, under Mao’s rool everybody was like them, now its a bit different. Without Communist rule, much more people would enjoy being better off.
    All in all: Communism=BAAAD, unnerstan’?

  • 178. dogbane  |  September 28th, 2011 at 6:03 am

    Off-topic, but I’d like to see some nerdish speculation on where these looted/commandeered Libyan SAMs might end up:

  • 179. Zhu Bajie  |  September 28th, 2011 at 7:03 am

    Brecher, other Exilers, you really ought to read up on warlord era China, it’s a good preview of what Libtard America might look like, after the collapse!

  • 180. FuckChina  |  September 28th, 2011 at 9:02 am

    @176 I blame the corporate-owned politicians, China-fearing media, godless politicians and evil corporations in addition to Communist China.

    Also, not every person in China is a hyper-smart nerd, nor is everyone in America an extra in Idiocracy. There are plenty of smart people in America in addition to plenty of idiots in China.

  • 181. rhinohorn  |  September 28th, 2011 at 11:58 am

    @ 158. True Kilcockian

    As per 5.: “Mao was right the hungarians should have shot 100,000 of the traitors”

    Sure, if you say so…
    Thing is, for some strange reason, ALL OF THE EXECUTED “COUNTER-REVOLUTIONAIRES” after the 1956 Hungarian Revolution WERE PEASANTS AND WORKERS! Executed by the so-called “Worker-Peasant Government” of the real traitor Kádár János-a government with zero number of worker or peasant members, LOL!
    A few years before, our other beloved Communist Dictator, Rákosi (Rosenfeld) Mátyás-the one Berija and Molotov accused with wanting to become the first Jewish King of Hungary-so, Comrade Rákosi complained to his Party cronies: “It is very hard to try to build Communism in a country of ten million Fascists…” (To interpret this saying, you have to know that the population of Hungary was exactly ten million souls, LOL…)
    So, executing 100,000 of what you called “traitors” would have achieved exactly zero point nada, you would have had to kill all the ten million of us!
    Because we Hungarians know what you do not seem to unnerstan’, my almond-shaped eyed little Comrade: COMMUNISM=BAAAD.

  • 182. super390  |  September 28th, 2011 at 7:47 pm

    The raw racism of Americans and Britons against the Japanese are what made the attacks of December 1941 feasible. They were so certain of the racial inferiority of the Japanese that they refused to seriously evaluate the quality of the hardware they were up against. Note that this racism was cultivated by the media, ironically exploiting the resentment against hard-working, educated Japanese in California getting ahead too fast; that made it double-plus necessary to claim they were inferior.

    This thread proves that our racism never ends, it just gets assigned to new scapegoats for our own failures.

  • 183. super390  |  September 28th, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    #176; Zhu Baije, I hope you really do live in Taiwan, because the more people in Asia who understand that America is being taken over by a neo-Confederate theocracy cult, the better chance that they will stand up to us when it becomes necessary to save civilization one day, as it was necessary for a once-progressive America to stand up to fascism. Get the word out about the danger of America’s Dominionism and the New Apostolic Reformation. Mass murder means nothing to these people.

  • 184. FuckChina  |  September 29th, 2011 at 12:15 am

    @183 America can’t ever keep order in shitholes like Iraq and Afghanistan. Our attempts at global conquest are little more than a bunch of useless, overpriced military bases scattered around the world.

  • 185. Cum  |  September 29th, 2011 at 1:44 am

    Where will the SAMs (and and all the crazy boatloads of western and soviet surplus weaponry floating around in Libya) end up? My budding war nerd instincts tell me: all over Africa, in the hands of dictators, drug/human/diamond trafficers, mercs, and every local startup branch of the al [insert muslimy word here] jihad club. They will murder civillians, and each other. In the coming years they will also probably be used against Chinese and American forces.

  • 186. Zhu Bajie  |  September 29th, 2011 at 2:37 pm

    &180 “There are plenty of smart people in America”

    Those are the ones tithing to televangelists, I suppose.

    “plenty of idiots in China.”

    But they are not running the country.

  • 187. Zhu Bajie  |  September 29th, 2011 at 2:44 pm

    @Super90, I live where the mountains are high and the emperor is far away. I agree, theocratic neo-confederates, dominionists, etc., are likely to take over in the US. Whether they’ll be a danger to the world, or merely to other Usians remains to be seen.

    Learn Spanish or something, the better to flee when you need to.

  • 188. Zhu Bajie  |  September 29th, 2011 at 2:45 pm

    @185 “Where will the SAMs (and and all the crazy boatloads of western and soviet surplus weaponry floating around in Libya) end up?”

    US gun idolators will get more than their share.

  • 189. joe-bob  |  September 29th, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    @ Carney 168

    About Stalin and doing poorly against the Germans initially… might I direct you to Icebreaker…

    …absolutely fascinating, true or not. To sum up, Stalin built a host of offensive weapons, structured his forces for offensive operations (by FAR the largest paratroop force in the world was russian when it was essentially still experimenal for everyone else, tanks designed to drive aong europe’s highways at 60mph, FLYING tanks…) also, the russians had just got done tering their frontier defenses done and massing their forces in preparation for launching an invasion scheduled to start a week or so after Barbarossa did.

    So stalin got caught worse than flat-footed and had to throw away all those weapons & units intended for offensive operations. Had he taken that offensive swing a couple weeks earlier, history would be much different.

    …whether I believe this account, idunno, but suspending disbelief & reading the whole thing was extremely entertaining if nothing else.

  • 190. super390  |  September 29th, 2011 at 6:17 pm

    FuckChina @ 184:

    I didn’t say the American extremists would create order abroad by conquest. Hitler never created any order by his conquests. It’s about using permanent major war to intimidate critics at home to shut up, while lavishing tax money on business cronies.

    And while our bases overseas are excessive, if you try to close them down Big Business & the Christian Right screams that you’re a terrorist sympathizer surrendering to the Chink-Moslem-gay-UN conspiracy. So apparently the bases do no good for you and me, but they do support the agenda of those Americans who most demand to control the entire world. In how many of the 130 countries where we have bases are American businesses in some way a beneficiary? Let’s close them down and see how many pro-US governments get overthrown by their own citizens and how many contracts get canceled.

  • 191. joe-bob  |  September 29th, 2011 at 7:46 pm

    @ super30 #190

    Heh, let’s see how muc oil, gas, diesel, etc costs after all that happens.

    …not saying that would be a bad thing. Currently a large part of the cost of gasoline for instance is hidden from your average american at the pump – since defense and intenational relations spending is largely devoted to keeping the oil supply secure & costs down. I’d love to see defense spending directly applied as a tax on price per gallon and see how attitudes towards empire, fuel efficiency etc would change.

  • 192. Zhu Bajie  |  September 29th, 2011 at 8:37 pm

    @190 “I didn’t say the American extremists would create order abroad by conquest.”

    Look at the Philippines and Haiti if you want to see what a full make-over by the US empire amounts to. It might be a pre-view of what the plutocrats and their janissaries, the Libertards, have in mind for you!

  • 193. Zhu Bajie  |  September 29th, 2011 at 8:45 pm

    @183, correction to my last, @189. I live and teach English in SW China. I have also spent fair amounts of time living along the SE coast and in Manchuria as well. If you are unemployed or burnt-out on US madness, try teaching English here for 6 months or a year. lists openings and will let you post a resume. Think of it as a paid vacation!

  • 194. atlas_lied  |  September 30th, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Oh man, F-China is a dumbass. How can anyone be cognizant of the corporate/billionaire debasing of American society, then continue to blindly blame some third party? As if evil foreign commies propagated Von Hayek’s theories and bought off university econ departments? Did evil foreign commies decide to gut the industrial heartland? Did evil foreign commies force America to fight endless, expensive wars?

    Note to F-China, you’re as dumb as the rest of the twits who blame Mexicans, blacks, Muslims, Union workers, etc. for American decline. Corruption starts at the top.

  • 195. atlas_lied  |  September 30th, 2011 at 12:04 pm

    A lot of you guys need to re-read Taiwanese history to see Chiang Kai Shek for the dipshit that he was. Chiang was the world’s worst general and would lose a game of chess to a blind retard. Chiang was just as cold-blooded as Mao, as he killed plenty during his mainland rule, and he conquered the much smaller local Taiwanese population by killing enough of them.

    Really F-China, do you know any of this stuff before going all OCD on the internet?

  • 196. Zhu Bajie  |  September 30th, 2011 at 5:27 pm

    @195 Quite true. Taiwan didn’t begin to take off economically until Peanuthead had gone senile and other, more rational types, were in charge.

  • 197. Zhu Bajie  |  September 30th, 2011 at 5:30 pm

    Re: Chiang’s casualty figures vs. Mao’s, the most rational estimates I’ve seen are in R. J. Rummel’s _Death By Government_, available for reading on-line at . Rummel puts both in his top ten list.

  • 198. FuckChina  |  September 30th, 2011 at 10:19 pm

    @195 “I blame the corporate-owned politicians, China-fearing media, godless politicians and evil corporations in addition to Communist China.”

  • 199. FuckChina  |  September 30th, 2011 at 10:43 pm

    I’d always heard K-S wasn’t quite a saint. Yet, compared to the mass famines, “Cultural Revolution” and promotion of the cult-state of North Korea, and Mao being history’s greatest mass murderer and (excepting Genghis perhaps) one of history’s greatest mass rapists, K-S can’t help but look extremely good next to time. Ie, his evils are nowhere near as tremendous as Mao Zedong’s.

    K-S also didn’t try to murder off China’s ancient cultures and he reacted with disgust to the Cultural Revolution and tried to do the opposite in Taiwan when Mao began his mad vision.

    As for focusing more on his evils, Taiwan hasn’t stolen 2 million jobs and given us shitty lead-infested crap for 3-4 trillion dollars unlike what good ol’ Commie China has done.

  • 200. ScrewChina  |  September 30th, 2011 at 10:57 pm

    Actually, you know what Atlas_Lied? I am acting kind of dumb in ignoring K-S’s sins and bad faults just because Mao was a lot evil.

    I’ll admit, I am overzealous on issues regarding China.

    But do you know what?

    30-40% of all Americans are dumb as fuck and have their lips glued to the Republican party’s asshole like they’re a part of some human centipede. They’re not smart enough to understand corrupt corporations, paid-for propaganda or corrupt politicians… but being against China is one thing they can actually agree on.

    I live in a real thick red-state so, China bashing is my go-to political position rather than arguing about guns and the tea party. And to be perfectly honest, the media doesn’t bash China nearly enough.

  • 201. Joe  |  October 1st, 2011 at 3:27 pm

    @199 What are you talking about? All sorts of jobs have beeen shipped to Taiwan.

  • 202. Zhu Bajie  |  October 1st, 2011 at 3:35 pm

    “I live in a real thick red-state so, China bashing is my go-to political position…”

    So move. Rwanda needs English teachers.

  • 203. super390  |  October 1st, 2011 at 8:32 pm


    So did you even bother to do any research on Chiang Kai-Shek’s role in intentional famines in China? I mean, there might be a historical debate on his culpability, but you never even brought it up.

    It doesn’t happen anymore because the Communists created China’s first functional state since British opium undermined the Manchu Dynasty, which as you can imagine made the Chinese quite nasty about things associated with Western capitalism.

    Also, the tiny island of Taiwan, WHILE IT WAS OUR ALLY, became the world’s biggest copyright pirate. Our GIs often bought cheap Taiwanese xeroxes of expensive American hardcover books. So China did nothing new; it just did it on a scale befitting 1/5 of the world’s entire population.

    And China only did it after BOTH political parties made it clear that they wanted Wall Street to go ahead and ship all those jobs to our toady puppet states in Latin America. NAFTA made it official. CIA coups against any mildly progressive regime south of the border were just as strong a signal. The vast US-based conspiracy to ruin Latin America and force its governments to destroy social programs, cut wages and become colonies of Wall Street is detailed in Naomi Klein’s “The Shock Doctrine”, and the similarity to what now is happening from Wisconin to Greece is horrifying.

    China’s real crime, then, was in turning this American doctrine of raping the poor on its head, luring in our companies on terms much less favorable because Communist China could offer them things that the US-dominated empire of banana republics lacked. Why? Because the landlords of Latin America, like the landlords Mao shot in China, had a vested interest in keeping the masses illiterate and medieval, making them useless to US corporations looking to replace entire US factories. Mao accidentally created the first generation of mainland Chinese workers educated and disciplined enough to steal our jobs.


    I agree with your suggestion. I think Ron Paul will have a heart attack when he sees the results.


    This is what I’m worried about. America spent its history until 1941 trying to catch up to Europe, and we were proud to steal good ideas from there. Now we’re so arrogant that no one is good enough to borrow ideas from, because the only regimes far enough to the Right to make our capitalist priesthood happy are places like Colombia and Israel. So every day we’re told that we have to cut wages, give up medical benefits, and destroy public goods and services — because kids in Europe and Asia get better test scores than ours! In other words, to compete with them we have to do the OPPOSITE of them, because even though they’re beating us, they’re still Commie welfare Moslem faggots so they must be beating us the WRONG way.

    This is the soul of madness. Or a giant scam to intentionally bleed America to death. Either way, how will Americans behave once all we have left are 4000 strategic nuclear weapons? We will have been indoctrinated to hate everyone else, and we will blame them for everything, and we will prefer Apocalypse to having to live like ni**ers.

    Our only hope now is to be rescued by foreigners, and I can’t see why they’d bother the way we talk about them.

  • 204. ScrewChina  |  October 1st, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    @201 The amount is miniscular compared to what Communist China has leached off of America.

  • 205. Zhu Bajie  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 3:13 am

    @204 No, ScrewChina, the problems of the US are the fault of the Americans. You fucked yourself over, individually and collectively. Now go tithe to Rod Parsley, beg Benny Hinn to heal you of microcephaly. Anything but cut back on the wars, invest in roads and education.

    By the way, pi does not equal 3, no matter what II Kings says.

  • 206. Zhu Bajie  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 3:15 am

    Happy PRC birthday, everyone!

  • 207. atlas_lied  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 7:59 am

    RE: Taiwan vs. China when it comes to American outsourcing.

    Again F-China and his ilk have shoddy memories/bad research. Taiwan was infamous for its;

    dirty authoritarian regime, cheap labor, routine flouting of intellectual property, lax labor standards, you name it. 1970s/80s era American workers and politicians blamed “slave” labor wages in Taiwan for the stripping of the American industrial base? Sound familiar? Of course they didn’t look to regressive US tax rules, and profit-maximizing American corporations just like they don’t do so now.

    martial law

    assassination of a

  • 208. atlas_lied  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 8:12 am


    If you studied political economy, there have been whole books written on Taiwan’s rise. Counterfeiting and cheap labor sound bad, but they were precursors to Taiwan’s present developed economy. Oh hell, America’s economy developed via copying and cheap labor in the post Civil War era.

    From my own perspective, I’d want the labor and environmental standards to rise, but I’m perfectly ok with the flouting of intellectual property. Unless of course, you want people like Bill Gates to squeeze even more money out of everyone else.

    Here’s where it gets more ironic; F-China continues to go on about the counterfeiting/slave labor in present-day China while presenting an idealized depiction of its rival/former rival Taiwan, yet he does not realize these two economies are basically flip sides of each other. Taiwan’s development just took place a generation earlier. Both had/have authoritarian yet economically progressive regimes, and both exploit and are exploited by American corporate greed.

    @204… I’m guessing you don’t remember our “ally” Taiwan doing an awesome job of selling cut rate counterfeit books and software?

    @F-China, the American Govt is anything but afraid of China. The American Govt is beholden to a bunch of slimeball billionaires who in turn profit from outsourcing and regressive tax codes.

    Gullible fools like you blame China, Mexican immigrants, minorities, Muslims, etc. instead of acknowledging the complete subversion of our supposedly accountable society.

  • 209. atlas_lied  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 8:21 am

    @203, Oh hell yes! Americans have been so rich and have deluded themselves with the facade of success for so long, they’re drunk on their own narcissism. It’s so bad, even the erudite, politically correct people who acknowledge American decline and blush at the scapegoating of foreigners, immigrants, and minorities STILL believe in American exceptionalism. Chalmers Johnson compared 21st century America to the Roman Empire. Other comparisons can be made towards the latter phases of the Ottoman and Qing Empires. Despite dysfunctional societies and declining economies, these empires still engaged in more of the status quo, and saw themselves as pre-destined to win.

  • 210. atlas_lied  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 8:24 am

    F-China, read up on 2-28 and Henry Liu.

    *sighs* You’re the Taiwan equivalent of the know-nothings, regressive 1960s segregationists, and the present-day tea party. Continuing to blame some scapegoat while being dismissive or plain ignorant of very similar things in your locale.

  • 211. joe  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 1:21 pm

    I think what fuckchina is arguing at in 200 is that we need to frame the debate as anti china and not anti-corporate. This is because the only thing that idiots understand is ethnic hatrid. They cant understand a hatrid of corporations. This is because the televesion tells them corporatiuons are as good and wholesom as a norman rockwell painting.

  • 212. Zhu Bajie  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 5:37 pm

    @2 Quite true, AZ. You can visit Changchun, see the First Auto Works.

  • 213. VPC  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 6:36 pm

    @163 yeah but see @165 re: the state of Jap-built infrastructure + industry post-1945.

    @165 Zhang Xueliang was a bad ass hero. He died peacefully in Hawaii the month after 9/11 after spending almost 60 years under house arrest by CKS and CCG. I recall that the reports I saw of his death were rather spartan on details of the Xi’an Incident. It’s almost like the powers that be are afraid that sheeple might realize that one lone ex-druggie can pull some pretty incredible shit if he puts his balls into it.


    This is The Exiled, and in deference to the heritage of this website, I won’t have you intimating that US soldiers were buying books when they were actually buying pussy. See WuMu DaXue.

  • 214. ScrewChina  |  October 2nd, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    @208 Yet again…. read carefully this time, it’s a re-repost of something I said earlier.

    “I blame the corporate-owned politicians, China-fearing media, godless politicians and evil corporations in addition to Communist China.”

  • 215. atlas_lied  |  October 3rd, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    The xenophobes in this thread may justify their stance by saying they ALSO blame the domestic corporate class. Strangely this generally takes the form of seeing China as an enabler of American greed, when in reality the US corporations will go ANYWHERE in search of more readily exploitable labor AND the US corporations will bribe/lobby/overthrow foreign governments that attempt to improve their own labor/environmental standards.

    Blaming China will NOT change the decline of the US. Remember the whole blame Japan movement of the 80s? It just did a great job of deflecting Reaganomics. If/when China goes away as a competitor, some other scapegoat will be cited. And you’ll lap it up.

  • 216. Patriot  |  October 3rd, 2011 at 2:33 pm

    Was going to post about Mao, Chiang and the civil war but I see my brothers and sisters (aren’t we all?) have gotten to that already.
    Just a few things that haven’t come up
    Re: Mao’s “accidental” nationalism wasn’t accidental, that was one of two defining characteristics of his ideology, the other being peasant rebellion. Mao deviated from orthodox Marx-Leninism which held that 1) revolution had to be international in orientation 2)revolution had to come from urban factory workers.

    The drive towards nationalism in China starts at least as early as Sun Yat-Sen, who put out his three principles of the people 1) nationalism, 2) democracy 3) people’s livelihood. In Mandarin that is MinZu, MinQuan and MinSheng. A lot of people think that “people’s livelihood” was really socialism.

    Anyways that’s all in the past now. The future is that Chinese factory workers today oppressed by the same financial elite as the American 99%. Ironically, the Communist Party in China may have succeeded in actually creating the oppressive urban industrial conditions that allegedly lead to Communist revolutions.

    There is an essay online purportedly an open letter by some Chinese intellectuals in support of #OccupyWallStreet. In the letter they write:

    “The eruption of the “Wall Street Revolution” in the heart of the world’s financial empire shows that 99% of the world’s people remain exploited and oppressed – regardless of whether they are from developed or developing countries. People throughout the world see their wealth being plundered, and their rights being taken away. Economic polarization is now a common threat to all of us. The conflict between popular and elite rule is also found in all countries. Now, however, the popular democratic revolution meets repression not just from its own ruling class, but also from the world elite that has formed through globalization. The “Wall Street Revolution” has met with repression from US police, but also suffers from a media blackout organized by the Chinese elite.

    The same fate, the same pain, the same problems, the same conflict. Faced with a common enemy in an elite global class that has already linked-up, the people of the world have only one option: to unite and in a unified and shared struggle overturn the rule of the capitalist elite, to ensure that everyone enjoys the basic human rights of work, housing, health care, education, and a secure old-age. But we must go further if we are to realize shared prosperity and popular democracy in a new socialist world historical framework, If we are to fully escape and neutralize the crises and disasters that capitalism has brought the human race, and realize harmonious social development.”

  • 217. ScrewChina  |  October 4th, 2011 at 9:10 am

    @211 Bingo.

    Americans don’t like or understand complex answers, they want simple explanations that can fit on bumper sticks.

    I mean, look at Kerry vs. Bush.

  • 218. Zhu Bajie  |  October 4th, 2011 at 7:08 pm

    Note, too, that Taiwan’s economy gets more intertwined with the mainland’s every day. You know all those “made in Taiwan” computers and cell-phones? The factories are all on the mainland.

  • 219. Arjun  |  October 9th, 2011 at 7:05 am

    Patriot said
    “Faced with a common enemy in an elite global class that has already linked-up, the people of the world have only one option: to unite and in a unified and shared struggle overturn the rule of the capitalist elite, to ensure that everyone enjoys the basic human rights of work, housing, health care, education, and a secure old-age.”

    That is ridiculous. If you think African poor will unite with the poor of India, Indonesia, Brazil, Iran etc… against you have no understanding of human nature. An Indian worker would rather support an Indian industrialist over an African worker anyday and so is the case with every other tribe, nationality etc.. in theis world. It is only femenine stupid arm chair intellectuals who see such childish dreams of a one-world. Try going to Afghanistan and convincing the manly local pastuns towards uniting with African black christians. It would be an amusing sight.

    Besides poverty is the basic state of humans, the majority of humans have always been poor and miserable. Communism would never be practical because humans differ from birth in mental and physical abilities. There will always be inequality among humans even if you make them equal in wealth or poverty. There would be inequality in talent, inequality in romantic love etc… you name it. The universe was formed billions of years before humans came and their childish notions of communism took root. The universe was never built on your Communist, Christian or Buddhist specifications, never will be. Inequality is a fact of life and has been a driving force of evolution in life. Live with it.

  • 220. ScrewChina  |  October 9th, 2011 at 5:32 pm

    A look at the Cultural Revolution, to all the Chinese sockpuppets here talking about how totally awesome it was.

  • 221. ScrewChina  |  October 9th, 2011 at 5:57 pm

    MAOre awesomeness for the Chinese internet sockpuppets to behold.

  • 222. Mason  |  October 10th, 2011 at 6:15 pm

    At least the navy is aware of the ballistic missile problem. I was on a Ballistic Missile Defense Cruiser this past summer and you’re right on the fact they can’t shoot a missile down once it starts its decent, but are more than able to hit a missile as its climbing or at its crest. Its just a matter of not having that many of them, and enough warning time.

  • 223. Patriot  |  October 11th, 2011 at 4:10 pm

    I didn’t write that quote, it came from the article I linked. But hey, reading comprehension doesn’t seem to be your strong point.

  • 224. Zhu Bajie  |  October 12th, 2011 at 2:51 pm

    ScrewChina, probabaly the next Cultural Revolution will be in the US, conducted by the Republican Religious Fanatic party against everyone else.

  • 225. Carney  |  October 28th, 2011 at 8:16 pm

    @ JoeBob 189, thanks. Very interesting book! I’ve read most of it so far and will finish it soon.

  • 226. Sfinks  |  November 13th, 2011 at 1:36 am

    Explain to me the logic behind opposing what the Japanese did to the Chinese on humanitarian grounds yet supporting Mao even though he killed more Chinese than the Japanese and (somehow) managed to wreck the Chinese economy worse than the Japanese did. Or why an educator would support Mao after what Mao did to educators. Or is there a double standard at play? We must all support the blighted American teacher who’s struggling to put a down payment on their second yacht but god forbid we spare a thought to the Chinese teacher who’s forced to eat human remains in the middle of the Gobi Desert.

  • 227. prof.nono  |  December 3rd, 2011 at 5:15 am

    read this then had to look up what a potlatch was….. you got it very wrong its a gift giving ceremony where the status of the family is determined not by who has the most resources but by who gives the most resources back to the tribe
    upon reading it i find this to be a very respectable ceremony that should not in any way be associated with the silly kind of bullshit you mistook it for

  • 228. A  |  September 13th, 2014 at 5:55 am

    The purpose of carriers (besides the power projection and air superiority against weaker opponents) is actually to be a cannon fodder. The really useful large naval vessels are the submarines.

    But the submarines need elite personnel to operate. A large can that goes underwater and is filled with dangerous, unstable nuclear technology and explosives, fire-risky electonics in conditions of limited air supply, can easily spring a leak and on top of all that it needs to be ready to go into a harm’s way, needs a crew of people who are both great individual performers and team players (in corporate speak) to survive.

    But you can’t simply educate or train an elite, you have to choose it among a larger group of aspirants for the position.

    But what happens to those aspirants of the pool who don’t make the cut? You have to offer them a perspective of good employment, even if they don’t manage to develop into the best of the best. Otherwise you won’t get the smartest candidates.

    At the same time, the carriers absorb the candidates who get the important positions in the system by political means (i.e. rich kids) and who would only get in the way where real elite work is needed.

  • 229. Bruce Irving  |  June 22nd, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    Carriers could be useful in browbeating their neighbors in enforcing the 9-dashed line in the S. China Sea. Pushing around 3rd world countries seems to be the only use for our carriers, after all.

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