The Wings of Europe Facebook page has just published a very useful and very simple table comparison of the capabilities of three fighters: the Rafale, the Gripen, and the Eurofighter Typhoon. The table shows nicely why the Rafale is decisively superior to these two other jets, based on Indian Air Force trials of those aircraft. One key fact omitted from the table is that the Typhoon is far more expensive than the Rafale while delivering much less capability than the French fighter.
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 22, 2014
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 21, 2014
The crappy, leftist DefenseOne website has recently (on March 14th) published a ridiculous article by anti-defense hack and former George Soros paid anti-defense propagandist Ben Freeman, now a “Policy Analyst on National Security Issues” at the “Third Way” think tank.
In his ridiculous screed, Freeman attacks what he claims are “Three Myths About the Defense Budget”, but in fact, it is his attacks on these supposed “myths” that are lies.
Firstly, Freeman denies that the defense budget proposed by Obama is small. Obama’s requested base defense budget is $495.6 bn, less than the amount enacted last year, and he’s also requesting $79.4 bn for the war in Afghanistan, a total of $570 bn.
This, alleges Freeman, is more than the military ever received under Ronald Reagan, so, Freeman quips, Obama cannot be accused of being weak on defense unless Reagan can also be.
But Freeman is lying. His claim is utterly false for two reasons. Firstly, the military actually received much more under Ronald Reagan, and secondly, yes, Obama IS very weak on defense, as evidenced by his structural and programmatic disarmament of the US military ever since taking office in 2009 (see below).
The biggest defense budget under Ronald Reagan, the one for FY1988, was $292.9 bn in FY1987 dollars (i.e. the dollars of the year in which it was enacted). Adjusted for inflation (using the DOL’s Inflation Calculator), that amounts to $605.30 bn – over $30 bn more than what Obama has requested.
And the cuts won’t stop there; in successive years, the defense budget will be cut further. OCO supplementals will eventually end after the Afghan war ends, and base defense spending will be cut significantly further due to the sequester – which, may I remind you, Obama first proposed and insisted on (and threatened to veto any attempts to undo it).
Of course, the gap between Reagan’s and Obama’s financial commitment to the military is even greater when you consider metrics far more accurate than raw dollar numbers.
During the Reagan years, the US spent 6% of its economy, and roughly 25-27% of the entire federal budget, on the military. Today, with war and DOE spending included, that is down to less than 4% of GDP – the LOWEST level since FY1948 – and less than 18% of the entire federal budget.
Freeman is also lying blatantly when he claims that the US spends 3 times more on the military than China and 5 times as much as Russia. His claim is based on OFFICIAL Chinese and Russian military spending figures. But, as anyone with even the smallest knowledge of these countries knows, Beijing and Moscow routinely and vastly understate their military budgets.
Independent analysts estimate China’s actual annual military budget to be $240 bn, double the $119 bn figure Beijing admits to and just two times less than the US defense budget. Russia’s military budget is also far larger than the official $90 bn figure; for example, many Russian ministries buy military-destined goods out of their own budgets and then give them as “free goods” to the Defense Ministry.
Just like the Soviet Union routinely understated its military spending, so do China and Russia today. Which isn’t surprising, given that China is communist, Russia is governed by an unreconstructed KGB thug, and both are on expansionist, imperialist binges.
But it gets even worse: in China and Russia, one dollar can buy several times more than the US. Which means that even if one determines Russia’s or China’s actual military budgets, that would then have to be multiplied by at least 3 to arrive at the real extent of their military buildups.
Which brings me to another lie by Freeman – that the US military is vastly superior to any competitor.
I wish it were true, but it isn’t. And Freeman, by propagating that comfortable lie, is trying to lull the American people into a false sense of security.
Man for man, ship for ship, plane for plane, the Chinese and Russian militaries are far better than the US military – which will learn that rude lesson sooner rather than later.
Chinese troops are better trained, fed, quartered, and led – by true warrior leaders, not by politically correct careerists eager to please their civilian masters in Washington. They, and their Russian counterparts, are also far better equipped – with superior air defense systems (which render their airspace closed to all but the most stealthy aircraft), nuclear missile delivery systems, ultra-quiet, submarines, surface warships, fighters, cruise missiles, anti-ship weapons, and so on.
A few examples will illustrate the point.
The premier air superiority fighter of China and Russia, the Flanker, is newer, better armed, more maneuverable, better equipped with sensors and missiles, and much cheaper than the old, outdated F-15 Eagle (to say nothing of the small, uncompetitive F-16 Crappy Falcon, itself inferior even to its Chinese clone, the J-10 Sinocanard, which is far more maneuverable than most Westerners think). Their missiles are longer-ranged than any air-to-air missile in US inventory and have diverse seekers, unlike the AIM-120 AMRAAM.
Russia’s and China’s fifth generation fighters, scheduled to enter service later this decade, are all-aspect-stealthy, can carry large weapon loads over long ranges, are highly maneuverable and capable of sustained supersonic speeds, have excellent sensor aperture, and can evolve into other roles than air superiority and theater strike. The ONLY Western (not just American, but WESTERN) fighter capable of competing with them (let alone defeating them) is the F-22 Raptor, or to be more precise, evolved and enhanced variants of this aircraft. Older USAF aircraft are so old and crappy that they’re literally falling out of the sky.
None of this can be said of the sole fifth-generation “fighter” the US is developing for its Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps: the grossly overweight, sluggish, unmaneuverable, underpowered, underranged, underarmed, non-stealthy (contrary to what Lockheed Martin claims), and hacked (by Chinese hackers) F-35 Junk Strike Fighter, AKA the Jet That Ate The Pentagon Budget. It can’t turn, climb, nor run away from a fight. In any combat situation, US and allied F-35s would be massacred like pigeons in a pest eradication program. Indeed, Freeman’s former employer, POGO, and Freeman himself have sharply criticized the F-35.
The F-35 is already woefully obsolete, even though it hasn’t entered service and won’t for many years (if ever). It has already been hopelessly obsoleted by the Flanker family of fighters, the J-10 Sinocanard, the MiG-35, the PAKFA, the J-20, the J-31, and modern Russian and Chinese air defense system (S-300, S-400, HQ-9, HQ-16, SA-11/17, Tor-M1, Pantsir-S1).
China has modern frigates, designed primarily for anti-submarine and anti-surface warfare, and Russia has the Admiral Gorshkov class. What does the USN has? A dwindling fleet of aging, obsolete Perry-class frigates and the Little Crappy Ship (LCS) that is easy to sink and has meager weaponry.
The USN does have a good class of air defense destroyers – the Arleigh Burke class – but even here China outperforms the US with its Type 052C and D destroyers, AKA Chinese “Aegis class” DDGs. You can read more about the newest Chinese frigate and destroyer classes here, in the aptly-titled article, “China’s Navy Takes A Great Leap Forward.”
Russia has 6,800 nuclear warheads, including 4,000 tactical ones. The US has 5,113 warheads, of which only about 400 are tactical. Nothing has been done to address Russia’s huge advantage in that area.
China and Russia have far better combat rifles – various variants of the famous AK-47 Kalashnikov (you can bury it in sand or mud and it will still fire). The standard rifles of the US military are the M16 and its shorter M4 variant – both of which are famous for their propensity to jam. These rifles have literally gotten thousands of US troops killed.
China alone has 100,000 naval mines, and Russia has further thousands. The USN is completely unprepared for this, with only 13 minesweepers, all operated by the Naval Reserve because the USN is completely uninterested in counter-mine warfare. The UK Royal Navy alone has more minesweepers than that (15) – all operated by the REGULAR Royal Navy.
China and Russia also have many kinds of weapons the US military simply doesn’t have at all: for example, anti-satellite weapons, supersonic anti-ship missiles, and short- and medium range ballistic missiles.
China has a wide range of supersonic anti-ship cruise missiles: the Russian-imported SS-N-22 Sunburn and SS-NX-30 Sizzler (3M54 Klub) and the indigenous Yingji family of missiles. A single Sunburn would suffice to sink an American aircraft carrier. It also has DF-21D anti-ship ballistic missiles, each of which, again, is enough to sink a USN carrier. The US has no weapons of this kind.
As for short- and medium range ballistic missiles, Russia has the Iskander-M and K, the R-500 GLCM, and the Yars-M IRBM, all fielded in flagrant violation of the INF Treaty. These missiles can reach any point on th Eurasian continent. China has DF-11, DF-15, and DF-16 short-range ballistic missiles, and the DF-21, DF-25, and DF-26 medium-range ballistic missiles, along with the CJ-10 and DH-10 cruise missiles, which can strike any target in the Western Pacific, with nuclear and conventional warheads alike – out to Guam and well beyond.
The US military USED to be the strongest martial force in the world. But alas, it no longer is. It is now DECISIVELY inferior to the Chinese and Russian militaries – by a large margin.
Shame on DefenseOne for publishing Freeman’s screed, and on Freeman for lying to the American people so blatantly.
Below: A graphic illustrating how large the Chinese navy will be just a year from now, in 2015. Credit: the National Defense Magazine based on Office of Naval Intelligence and CRS data.
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 19, 2014
Recettemment, le President de la Republique, Francois Hollande, a recu des idees des Francais pour ameliorer la securite routiere. L’association 40 million des automobilistes a aussi soumis des idees des gens ordinaires a l’Assemblee Nationale. C’est-a-dire, le grand debat sur la securite routiere continue.
Alors, que peut faire une difference reelle? Que peut vraiment reduire le nombre annuel des morts et blesses sur les routes francaises?
Selon le Conseil Nationale de la Securite Routiere (CNSR), plus de 1 000 de ceux 3 600 personnes qui meurent chaque annee sur les routes francaises meurent du a l’alcool, c’est-a-dire, ses accidents sont dus a l’ivresse du conducteur. L’alcool est donc responsable pour environ un tiers de tous les morts sur les routes francaises chaquee annee. Il faut aussi ajouter les morts causees par les conducteurs stupefies (sous l’influence des drogues) a cette statistique.
Donc que fait-il faire?
1) Il faut continuer et voire augmenter la campagne de videos de choc sur l’ivresse et l’usage de telephones quand on conduit une vehicule. Il faut produire et diffuser plus de tels videos (et affiches) pour parler a l’imagination des Francais.
2) Il faut une politique zero tolerance vers tous les conducteurs sous l’influence de l’alcool ou les drogues. C’est-a-dire, il faut:
a) abaisser la limitation du content de l’alcool dans le sang de 0,5% a 0,2%;
b) retirer les permis de tous les conducteurs ivres, et interdire tous les conducteurs ivres de rouler pour 1 an minimum (sauf conduire au travail et de retour a la maison) apres l’infraction; tous les conducteurs ivres qui provoquent un accident devraient etre interdits de conduire pour 10 ans (sauf les voyages travail/maison). Les recidivistes qui conduisent ivres ou stupefies pour la deuxieme fois devraient etre interdits a conduire pour 5 ans minimum (sauf les voyages travail/maison), et ceux qui provoquent un accident ou une personne meurt ou est blesse devraient etre interdits a conduire a vie. En plus, les voitures de tous les automobilistes qui ont conduit sous l’influence de l’alcool devraient etre equipees avec des alcomats qui permettraient de conduire seulement si le conducteur n’est pas ivre (moins que 0,2% d’alcool dans le sang).
c) augmenter, de maniere significative, le nombre des patrouilles equipes avec des alcomats et les emplacer premierement proche des bars, clubs, pubs, discotheques, et restaurants – les endroits ou l’alcool est vendu (et bu) dans les plus grandes quantites. Il faut particulierement controler les conducteurs la nuit du 1er janvier et le vendredi, samedi et dimanche.
d) refuser d’ouvrir une “sale de shoot” a Paris;
e) elever l’age quand on peut legalement boire l’alcool de 18 a 21 ans, comme aux Etats-Unis.
3) Il faut punir les pietons de croisement de la route sous le feu rouge ou dans un endroit ou le croisement est interdit. Maintenant, rarement sont ils punis de cela, mais ils provoquent des accidents aussi souvent que les automobilistes.
4) Il faut decourager l’usage des routes secondaires et encourager l’usage des autoroutes et des routes express – par exemple, en geleant ou meme reduisant les peages.
5) Il faut aussi lutter strictement contre ceux qui refusent de ceder le passage quand ils sont obliges par la loi de le faire – c’est la cause de 13% des accidents. Il faut augmenter les peines pour telles infractions.
6) Il faut generalement decourager l’usage de l’automobile en faveur des transports en commun.
7) Il faut exiger que tous les voitures qui ont 4 ou plus d’ans soient controlees chaque annee, et les voitures de 2 ans tous les 2 ans. Il faut aussi exiger que tous les voitures soient equipees avec un ABS et deux airbags (une pour le conducteur, et l’autre pour le passager a l’avant du vehicule).
8) Sur les routes secondaires, il faut designer de loin plus de zones ou le depassement serait interdit.
9) Il faut une politique zero vers ces conducteurs qui utilisent ses telephones mobiles en roulant, mais aussi designer plus des places de stationnement (parking) pour eux pour qu’ils puissent stationner et conduire ses entretiens par telephone mobile.
10) Et enfin, il faut supprimer les limitations de la vitesse et les radars sur les autoroutes et deployer les moyens de la police et la GN sur les routes secondaires et en agglomeration – les endroits ou se passent plus de 60% de tous les accidents sur tout le reseau routier francais.
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 18, 2014
The US nuclear deterrent, and in particular, the nuclear triad, are under constant attack from the pro-unilateral-disarmament Left, whose goal, of course, is to unilaterally disarm the US and expose it to attack.
The latest round of this attack was conducted recently in the Diplomat e-zin by James R. Holmes, the Diplomat‘s resident wannabe defense expert, calling himself “the Naval Diplomat” (in reality, a defense issues ignoramus). Mr Holmes questions the nuclear triad’s rationale for being because, he says, the US nuclear arsenal will continue to shrink under treaties such as New START. He also falsely claims that China’s nuclear arsenal is small and so there is no need for a US nuclear triad.
Meanwhile, Obama’s top arms control negotiator, Rose Goettemoeller, a longtime advocate of disarming America unilaterally and completely (“We are not modernizing. That is one of the key principles of our policy.”) and Vice President Joe Biden are lobbying for a unilateral cut of the US nuclear deterrent to just 300 warheads – far less than even what China has. Obama is sympathetic to those views.
But they – and others who seek to dismantle the nuclear triad – are dead wrong. Here’s why.
Firstly, Russia still has a huge nuclear arsenal, and contrary to Holmes’ lies, that arsenal is GROWING, not shrinking, even under New START, signed in Prague in 2010 by Barack Obama. That treasonous treaty allows Russia to GROW its deployed strategic nuclear arsenal – and Moscow has done so and continues to do so.
Moscow has 2,800 strategic nuclear warheads (according to the Federation of American Scientists), of which 1,500 are deployed and 50 further will be soon, and around 4,000 tactical nuclear warheads (many of which can be delivered against the US).
To deliver them, Russia has over 410 ICBMs, 13 ballistic missile submarines, 251 strategic bombers (Tu-95, Tu-22M, Tu-160), and around 20 attack submarines capable of carrying nuclear cruise missiles anywhere in the world. To deliver its tactical warheads, Russia has those attack submarines plus short-range ballistic missiles, attack aircraft, surface warships, artillery pieces, and IRBMs such as the Yars-M, the Iskander-M, and the R-500.
Russia’s ICBM fleet alone can deliver at least 1,684 warheads to the Continental US; Russia’s ballistic missile submarine fleet, at least 1,400 (which will grow to 2,000 when new Russian missiles enter service); Russia’s bomber fleet, over 1,700. Russia’s tactical delivery systems can deliver additional thousands of nuclear weapons.
Moscow is rapidly modernizing its nuclear arsenal, introducing at least three new classes of ICBMs (the Yars, the Rubezh, and the Sarmat), a pseudo-ICBM with a 6,000 km range, a new class of ballistic missile subs (the Borei class), new short- and intermediate-range missiles (Yars-M, Iskander-M, R-500), a new submarine- and air-launched cruise missile (the Kh-101/102 Koliber) a new theater nuclear strike jet (Su-34), and is developing a next-generation intercontinental bomber (PAK DA, i.e. the Prospective Aircraft Complex of Long Range Aviation).
On top of that, Russia has up to 4,000 “tactical” nuclear warheads, many of which can be delivered to the US by cruise missiles carried by the 20 submarines of the Akula and Oscar-II classes (12 Akulas, 8 Oscars). In fact, a few years ago, one Akula class submarine, probably armed with nuclear-tipped cruise missiles, sneaked close to the US East Coast!
To scrap the nuclear triad in the face of this huge, and growing, nuclear thread would be worse than foolish; it would be utterly suicidal.
As for China, it has at least 1,600, and up to 3,000, nuclear warheads, according to former Russian missile force chief Gen. Viktor Yesin and Georgetown Professor Philip Karber (who was the DOD’s chief nuclear strategist under President Reagan).
To deliver them, Beijing wields 75-87 ICBMs (and is adding more every year), 120-160 strategic bombers, 6 ballistic missile subs, over 120 MRBMs, over 1,200 SRBMs, and 280 tactical strike aircraft. On top of that, it has hundreds, if not thousands, of nuclear-capable cruise missiles (ground-, air-, and sea-launched), such as the CJ-10, the CJ-20, and the DH-10. Note that China, like Russia, is adding more nuclear weapons and delivery systems (and more modern ones) every year.
Moscow and Beijing not only have large nuclear arsenals, they’re quite willing to use them. In fact, in the last 7 years, Russia has threatened to aim or use nuclear weapons against the US or its allies on 15 separate occassions, and in the last 2 years has flown nuclear-armed bombers into or close to US and allied airspace. In May 2012, when its bombers overtly practiced a nuclear strike on Alaska, the Russian Air Force said to the press it was “practicing attacking the enemy.”
Not only that, but in its military doctrine Russia openly claims a right to use nuclear weapons first – even if the opponent does not have any nuclear weapons! And it says it will never give up its nuclear arsenal because it considers it “sacred.”
Moreover, the US now has to deter not only Russia and China, but North Korea and Iran as well. North Korea already has ICBMs capable of reaching the US and miniaturized warheads fittable onto such missiles, and Iran is projected by the US intelligence community to have such missiles by 2015.
On top of that, the US has to provide a credible nuclear deterrent not only to itself, but to over 30 allies around the world: all NATO members, Israel, Gulf countries, and Pacific allies such as the Philippines, Japan, and South Korea. These allies are watching the state of the US nuclear arsenal closely and will develop their own if the US cuts its umbrella further. Thus making the problem of proliferation – which the CNS and Ploughshares falsely pretend to be concerned about – that much worse.
Already, 66% of South Koreans want their country to obtain its own nuclear arsenal, and Saudi Arabia, fearing Iran, has ordered nuclear weapons in Pakistan and DF-21 ballistic missiles in China – both of which are quite happy to oblige, because Saudi Arabia pays in hard cash.
The truth is that the need for a large nuclear deterrent, and the nuclear triad, has never been greater. America needs them now more than ever. In this 21st century threat environment marked by three (soon to be four) hostile nuclear powers, two of them with large nuclear arsenals, it would be utterly suicidal and foolish to cut the US nuclear arsenal further, let alone deeply so.
And it is absolutely NOT true that the US nuclear arsenal will inevitably continue to shrink. It will be cut further only if Congress allows Obama and his successor (who will likely be Hillary Clinton) to continue disarming the US unilaterally. Congress has many means at its disposal to stop the White House from disarming the US and thus stop any further cuts in America’s nuclear deterrent, as it should.
Disarmament is a choice (and a foolish and suicidal one at that). There is nothing inevitable about it. Republicans can stop it – and House Republicans work every day of every year on Capitol Hill to indeed stop it.
Last but not least, if a nuclear triad is such a redundant and obsolete arrangement, why do the Russians, the Chinese, and the Israelis continue to maintain, modernize, and even expand their nuclear triads, with new aircraft, missiles, and submarines?
Quick! Someone better tell the Russians, the Chinese, and the Israelis that they’re wasting their money on an obsolete arrangement!
The truth is that a nuclear triad is BY FAR the most survivable, most effective, most powerful, most deterring, and most cost-effective arrangement in nuclear deterrence. Nothing else will ever provide the same degree of security at the same or lower cost. Nothing else will ever suffice to replace it – not a dyad, not a monad, not missile defense, not conventional weapons.
James R. Holmes is dead wrong, as usual. The nuclear triad and a large nuclear arsenal are STILL needed, and will be needed for many, many decades to come.
And as for the New START treaty – in light of the fact that it requires nuclear arsenal cuts only of the US, its onerous restrictions on US missile defense development, its pathetically weak verification regime, the fact that Russia is an aggressor who has illegally invaded and occupies two sovereign countries, and the fact that Russia has violated EVERY arms reduction treaty it has ever signed – the US should IMMEDIATELY withdraw from that pathetic treaty, as well as all other arms reduction treaties. IMMEDIATELY. Not tomorrow, but today.
Additionally, the US should:
- Impose harsh sanctions on Russia if it continues to violate the INF treaty (as it likely will);
- Withdraw from the CFE Treaty and encourage US allies to do the same;
- Refuse to ever ratify the CTBT;
- Assist Ukraine in developing its own nuclear weapons, or at least take Ukraine under the protection of the US nuclear umbrella.
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 17, 2014
Comme tous le Parisiens le deja savent, a partir du lundi le 17 mars la circulation a Paris et dans la petite couronne sera restrictee (limitee): les voitures avec les numeros d’immatriculation impairs pourront rouler seulement les jours impairs, et celles avec les numeros pairs pourron rouler seulement les jours pairs. Une limitation qui est inapplicable, inenforcable, et simplement stupide, comme l’a deja justement dit l’association 40 millions d’automobilistes.
Pourquoi? Parce que la qualite de l’air dans la region parisienne est si mauvaise que le gouvernement Ayrault doit desesperement essayer ces astuces.
Et pourquoi doit-il le faire? Parce que pendant les 13 annees dernieres, la qualite de l’air a Paris a systematiquement degrengole a point ou Paris a un air pire et plus pollue que les grandes metropoles chinoises. Cette desastre ecologique est le bilan de, et la facture pour, les 13 annees du Parti Socialiste, avec Bertrand Delanoe et sa 1ere adjointe Anne Hidalgo, au pouvoir. C’est aussi ce auquel les Parisiens peuvent s’attendre si Mme Hidalgo gagne l’election municipale prochaine.
Je le repete: cette disastre ecologique que les Parisiens vivent maintenant, c’est le bilan de et la facture pour les 13 annees du M. Delanoe et de Mme Hidalgo au pouvoir.
Selon Airparif, le nombre des jours par an ou la qualite de l’air a Paris est mauvaise s’est dedouble de 53 jours par an en 2001 a 117 jours par an en 2013.
Elire Mme Hidalgo, ce serait continuer la meme politique desastreuse qui a conduit a la crise presente.
Alors, que faut-il faire?
D’abord, il faut elire Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet comme maire de Paris. NKM a bcp de bonnes idees pour ameliorer la qualite de l’air a Paris, notamment eradiquer systematiquement le diesel de la flotte municipale de Paris et celle de la RATP, interdire Paris aux poids-lourds et cars polluants, creer une ceinture verte (cyclable) autour de Paris, creer des Zones d’Action Prioritaires pour la qualite de l’air (ZAPA), et promuvoir les vehicules electriques et hybrides dans la ville (plus des stations de rechargement), etc.
NKM veut aussi doubler le nombre des places de stationnement, ce que Anne Hidalgo critique fortement. Mais Mme Hidalgo, en tant qu’adversaire fanatique et ideologique de la voiture, ne comprend pas que 30% de la circulation a Paris est due aux conducteurs qui simplement cherchent (en vain) des places de stationnement a Paris.
NKM veut donc les donner ces places afin qu’ils laissent ses voitures la-bas et prennent les transports en commun. C’est une idee excellente.
NKM veut aussi ameliorer les transports en commun de Paris, notamment en automatisant la ligne 13 (la plus saturee) du metro, prolongeant la ligne 3 du Tramway a la Porte Maillot, et faisant les deplacements gratuits aux jeunes entre 18 et 22 ans.
Enfin, NKM veut couvrir tout le peripherique, ou se concentre 25% de la circulation a tout Paris, et elever la vitesse maximale sur ce boulevard a 80 km/h, ou les voitures roulent en 5eme, avec des tours du moteur faibles (env. 1000 ou moins tours/minute). Ce qui aussi n’epuise pas trop les moteurs.
Mais pour ameliorer la qualite de l’air a Paris, il faut aller meme plus loin que le propose NKM. Il faut:
1) Designer tous les rues, avenues, et boulevards sortants de Paris, les boulevards des Marechaux, le Bd Saint-Michel, l’Avenue de Wagram, et au moins une voie dans chaque sens sur le peripherique et les autoroutes sortantes de Paris, comme voies reservees aux vehicules portants au moins 2 personnes (sauf les vehicules electriques).
2) Elever la limitation de la vitesse aux avenues Foch et de la Grande Armee, sur les Boulevards des Marechaux, et sur les quais de la Seine, a 80 km/h.
3) Faire plus a ameliorer les transports en commun a Paris, notamment en:
a) installant des escaliers mecaniques a plus de stations;
b) assurant que, en 2020, tous les trains du metro, et tous les stations du metro et du RER a Paris, soient climatise(e)s;
c) ameliorant la securite aux stations et trains du metro;
d) assurant que la ligne J du Transilien, tres saturee, sera desserviee plus souvent et seulement par des Voitures de Banlieue a 2 Niveaux (VB 2N);
e) ameliorant les autres connexions ferrovriaires de Paris avec les banlieues et les villes d’Ile de France plus distantes (comme p.e. Evry-sur-Seine), afin que partout en Ile-de-France il y ait une alternative a la voiture;
f) accelerant la construction de Paris Grand Express.
4) Instituant une congestion charge (exactement comme a Londres), c’est-a-dire un peage pour l’entree en voiture dans le centre-ville. Cela devrait financer SEULEMENT les transports, et d’abord les transports en commun (mais aussi la couverture du peripherique), a Paris. Pas les fonctionnaires, pas l’ASP, pas le “fonctionnement de la ville”, seulement les transports. Cela pourrait meme permettre une baisse des prix des billets de transports en commun!
5) Geler, si non reduire, les prix des billets des transports en commun jusqu’au 2020.
Posted in Ideologies, Transport | Tagged: Anne Hidalgo, Bertrand Delanoe, Delanoe bilan, Hidalgo bilan, la qualite de l'air a Paris, municipales a Paris, Paris, PS au pouvoir bilan | Leave a Comment »
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 15, 2014
As CDN reported earlier, the Democrats are already rushing to defend Hillary Clinton’s and Barack Obama’s utterly failed foreign policy record, including the shameful, disastrous “reset” (read: appeasement) policy towards Russia. Some former Clinton State Department officials, such as P. J. Crowley, defend it on the spurious grounds that “the reset worked when Dmitry Medvedev was President” (i.e. from 2008 to 2012).
But they are dead wrong. The Obama-Clinton “reset” policy NEVER worked, even when Dmitry Medvedev (who was just a puppet of Vladimir Putin’s) was President.
That’s because Putin, throughout the whole time, was the man really in power, while Medvedev was never anything more than a figurehead. In that respect, Russia was, in those years, similar to the China of the 1980s: Deng Xiaoping was really in power, content with “only” the post of Chairman of the CMC, while other politicians held the posts of President, Premier, and CPC General Secretary. But – as with Putin – Deng was really “the power behind the throne.”
Only a fool could have ever thought that Putin had relinquished power for four entire years to Medvedev, and that Medvedev was ever anything more than a figurehead.
So let us recount how the Obama-Clinton “reset” policy has always been an utter failure THROUGHOUT the entire Medvedev years:
1) The New START treaty: Celebrated by the Obama administration and the entire Left as the crowning achievement of the “reset”, it is actually its most disastrous and shameful failure. This treasonous treaty requires the US to cut its deployed nuclear arsenal by an entire third, from the 2,200 warheads allowed by the 2002 Moscow Treaty to just 1,550 warheads, while Russia is allowed to (and has taken many steps to) increase its own arsenal. Today, Russia has 2,800 strategic nuclear warheads, of which 1,500 are deployed and another 50 will be deployed. Russia also wields a huge arsenal of delivery systems: 434 ICBMs, 13 ballistic missile submarines, and 251 strategic bombers (171 of which are not even counted under New START treaty rules).
2) Iran: Russia has agreed only to minimal, symbolic sanctions against Tehran, and has fiercely opposed, and repeatedly vetoed, anything more than the weakest sanctions against Iran. It has also completed the construction of Iran’s first nuclear reactor, is now building the second, and has continued supplying tons of nuclear fuel to Iran. It has also pledged to deliver state-of-the-art S-300 air defense systems to Iran (and Syria). Contrary to the popular myth, Russia has NOT cancelled the delivery of those systems.
3) Syria: When a popular uprising broke out against Syrian dictator (and Hezbollah supporter) Bashar al-Assad, an ally of Iran, he immediately began to attempt to quell this uprising by brute force. And Russia has continually supported him with weapons and diplomatic protection from the start. Even during the supposedly halcyon Medvedev years, it vetoed draft UNSC resolutions aimed at punishing Assad.
4) America’s European allies: Throughout the entire Medvedev years, Russia continued to threaten America’s European allies with nuclear weapons and missiles, especially those who have agreed to host elements of America’s missile defense system – in response to which Russia continued, and continues, to threaten nuclear mayhem and withdrawal from the (useless) New START treaty.
5) The INF Treaty: It was during the supposedly halcyon Medvedev years that Russia began developing and fielding intermediate range missiles (such as the R-500, the Iskander-M, and intermediate range “air defense” missiles) that violate the INF treaty. The Clinton State Department did NOTHING to counter this obvious violation.
6) Missile Defense: Despite cancelling President Bush’s plan to build missile defense installations (intended to protect the US, not Europe) in Poland and the Czech Republic, Obama and Hillary got NOTHING in return from the Kremlin. NOTHING. No concession whatsoever.
7) Bombers Flying Into US Airspace: As early as April and May 2012, when Medvedev was still in office, the Russians began flying nuclear-armed bombers close to and sometimes into US airspace – and said they were “practicing attacking the enemy.” They have also repeatedly flown nuclear-armed bombers into Japanese and Swedish airspace.
So for the entire Medvedev period, and beyond, the Obama-Clinton “reset” (read: appeasement) policy has been an utter, disastrous failure. America has not benefitted AT ALL from this idiotic policy. It has not produced ANY benefits to the US whatsoever.
Therefore, the reset’s defenders are dead wrong: the reset was ALWAYS a failure, even during the Medvedev years. Which is not surprising given that, as stated earlier, Vladimir Putin was always in power before, during, and after the Medvedev years, and still is.
For another superb article on the utter failure of the Obama-Clinton reset policy, see Charles Krauthammer’s excellent column.
Posted in Ideologies, Media lies, Nuclear deterrence, Obama administration follies | Tagged: Hillary, Hillary and Putin, Hillary and Russia, Hillary Clinton, Hillary's record, how to beat Hillary, how to defeat Hillary, New START, New START treaty, nuclear weapons, Obama's appeasement of Russia, Obama's reset, Obama's reset with Russia, reset with Russia, Russia, Russia's nuclear arsenal | 1 Comment »
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 14, 2014
This week, the DOD formally submitted to Congress its proposal of the FY2015 defense budget. The base defense budget would amount to $496 bn, and there would be a roughly $80 bn war supplemental for the final year of the Afghan war, thus bringing the total to around $580 bn, i.e. less than 4% of America’s GDP. In a few years, the war supplementals will be gone, and the base defense budget will shrink further to $493 bn, i.e. below 3% of GDP – the lowest level since before Pearl Harbor.
Already the US spends the smallest amount of money (as a share of its economy) on defense since FY1948, excluding the Clinton years when defense spending plummeted to 3.0% of GDP. Barack Obama’s budget plans would take defense spending even lower, to below 3% of GDP.
But Obama isn’t just content with cutting America’s defense spending; he’s cutting the military’s muscle as well:
- The Navy will have to mothball half of its entire cruiser fleet – 11 vessels, several of them capable of ballistic missile defense. That’s even more than the Navy proposed to lay up previously (7). These vessels will not return to service until there is money to modernize them. The construction of new ships will also see significant cuts.
- The Navy must also significantly cut the procurement of its crucial P-8 Poseidon and E-2D Hawkeye aircraft, the former needed to protect the US Navy against hostile submarines (esp. those of China and Iran), and the latter to provide airborne early warning, especially to the Navy’s Carrier Air Wings.
- The Air Force will have to shed its entire fleet of over 300 A-10 Warthog aircraft. With decent armor, air-to-ground missiles, and a hefty 30mm gun spitting thousands of rounds per minute, that aircraft is ideal for close air support, which troops on the ground have always needed and appreciated. No other aircraft can provide that capability. B-52s, B-1s, F-15Es, F-16s, and F-35s are too vulnerable to damage – even to small arms fire – and too fast to ever be effective in that role. Don’t take my word for it. The father of the A-10, Pierre Sprey, who also contributed to designing the F-16, has openly said that, as much as he’s proud of the work he did on the F-16, he would NEVER claim it is useful for close air support.
- The Air Force will also have to retire its entire fleet of U-2 spy planes, which, despite being older, can fly higher, have far more powerful aperture and more diverse sensors, and thus much better intel gathering capability, than the drones supposed to replace them (Global Hawks). It will also lose more F-15 air superiority fighters.
- The Army will have to cancel its Ground Combat Vehicle program (intended to replace the seriously-deficient Bradley infantry fighting vehicle), and the Marines will lose the badly-needed Amphibious Combat Vehicle program, needed to replace the USMC’s Vietnam-War-era amphibious tractors.
The proposed FY2015 isn’t all bad, however:
- It protects investment in the badly needed Long Range Strike Bomber and KC-46 Pegasus tanker, both of which are crucial to preserving the military’s ability to operate and fight globally.
- It provides funding to buy more JASSM-ER standoff cruise missiles, which have a range of around 1,000 kilometers and can be launched by any US combat aircraft.
- It calls for major reforms to the military’s personnel’s pay, pensions, healthcare, and benefits programs, whose costs have gone out of control, and for closure of unneeded bases.
- It provides funding to harden some of the military’s Pacific bases; to buy more missile interceptors; and to develop a new missile defense kill vehicle and better target discrimination capabilities.
This still does not, however, outweigh the fact that the budget will, overall, weaken America’s defense, which is precisely what Barack Obama wants.
And let’s also recount what isn’t in the budget, but should be:
- No restart of F-22 Raptor fighter production (killed by Obama in 2009), even though Russia and China have flight-tested, and are developing, a combined of THREE fifth-generation stealthy fighters that will be superior to EVERY fighter on the planet, except the F-22, when deployed later this decade.
- No major upgrades to the F-15 fleet. Indeed, that fleet, already cut significantly by Obama, will be cut even further!
- No major upgrades to the F-16 fleet, nor any sale of any F-16s to Taiwan.
- No restart of the cancelled long-range air to air missile, which will leave US fighters outgunned vis-a-vis aircraft armed with the K-172 Novator.
- No new AWACS program to replace the USAF’s old E-3 Sentry AWACS aircraft.
- No funding for any new nuclear weapons – because it doesn’t fit Obama’s fantasy of disarming the US unilaterally.
- No significant cuts to the DOD’s bloated bureaucracy and army of contractors.
- No funding for an East Coast missile defense site.
- No significant funding for alternative airbases in the Pacific or for hardening America’s existing bases in the Western Pacific.
- No funding for a new ICBM, badly needed to replace the old Minuteman III, first deployed in 1976.
In short, as many conservatives have already stated, Obama’s proposed FY2015 budget would, if enacted, be another step on the way to disarming the US unilaterally, a policy I have warned against my entire life.
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 12, 2014
If you needed any more evidence that Rand Paul is totally indistinguishable from his father on foreign and defense policy and is a member of the Blame America First crowd, here’s that evidence.
On February 25th, when interviewed by the Washington Post’s Robert Costa, Sen. Paul falsely accused “some Republicans” of harboring a Cold War mindset and exhorted the US to maintain a “respectful” relationship with Russia even in the face of Russia’s invasion and occupation of the Crimea.
Speaking to the liberal WaPo, Rand said:
“Some on our side are so stuck in the Cold War era that they want to tweak Russia all the time and I don’t think that’s a good idea.”
Excuse me? REPUBLICANS are stuck in the Cold War era?
On the contrary, it is Russia’s government, especially its President Vladimir Putin (an unreconstructed KGB thug) and his inner circle (composed mostly of his fellow KGB thugs and other members of the Saint Petersburg clique) who harbor a Cold War mindset – and deep-seated hatred of America and the Western civilization.
(Which is not surprising, because just like a wolf will always remain a wolf preying on sheep, KGB thugs will always remain KGB thugs and will always prey on weak victims.)
It is Vladimir Putin’s Russia which has, in recent years:
- Repeatedly flown nuclear-armed strategic borders into US, allied (Japanese), and even neutral (Swedish) airspace and said the Russian AF was “practicing attacking the enemy.” What on Earth have SWEDEN and JAPAN done to Russia? For that matter, what has America done to Russia? Nothing.
- Repeatedly (on at least 15 separate occassions) threatened to aim or even use its nuclear weapons against the US and its allies.
- Invaded two sovereign countries that dared to try to break out of Moscow’s sphere of influence and align themselves with the West (Georgia and UKraine) and continues to occupy both countries.
- Repeatedly violated several arms reduction treaties, including the Conventional Forces in Europe Treaty and the INF Treaty, the latter being violated by Russia by repeatedly testing and deploying nuclear-armed missiles banned by that treaty.
- Deployed nuclear-armed ballistic missiles in the Kaliningrad District, next to Poland, threatening that loyal ally of the US.
- Backed America’s enemies around the world – North Korea, Iran, Syria, Venezuela, Cuba – to the hilt, with diplomatic protection at the UN Security Council, weapons (including the advanced S-300VM air defense system), nuclear fuel (Iran), and nuclear reactors (Iran).
- Stationed a spy ship, the Viktor Leonov, in Cuba (it’s still there).
- Conducted, and continues to conduct, a wave of hateful anti-American propaganda in domestic and foreign (e.g. RussiaToday) media.
- Sent an Akula-class nuclear-armed submarine close to the US submarine base in King’s Bay, GA.
- Domestically, assassinated high-profile dissidents (Anna Politkovskaya, Alexander Litvinenko) and jailed hundreds of others.
Yet, Rand Paul claims that REPUBLICANS are the ones “stuck in the Cold War era”?!
How dare you even make such a false and outrageous claim, Senator?!
America is supposed to have a cordial, “respectful” relationship with such a hostile country, led by a KGB thug, and appease it (“avoid antagonizing it” in Randspeak) ?
No, Senator. You are dead wrong. Most Republicans are very critical of Russia (and of President Obama’s soft policy towards it), but NOT because of Cold War past.
Republicans are critical of Putinist Russia and Obama’s reset – and demand a tougher policy – because of Russia’s CURRENT and RECENT behavior, which has been very aggressive, anti-American, and dangerous to America’s own national security.
It is because of Russia’s CURRENT and RECENT behavior that Republicans demand that tough steps be taken towards Russia.
But Rand says no. He claims the US should “avoid antagonizing Russia” and have “a respectful relationship” with Moscow even despite Russia’s recent aggression, because Russia is still a geopolitical and military power which wields hundreds of ICBMs.
You are dead wrong again, Senator.
The only right response to intimidation and aggression, especially from dictatorships like Putin’s Russia, is strength and toughness, not “respect” and appeasement as you advocate.
In fact, the ONLY thing dictators and bullies like Putin, China’s Xi Jinping, and North Korea’s Kim Jong-un respect and fear is STRENGTH combined with TOUGHNESS – a bold moral stand against them combined with a demonstrated willingness to use that STRENGTH if need be.
Dictators and aggressors like Putin understand only the language of force. The only thing that can deter them is superior military and economic force, combined with a proven willingness to use it to stop these dictators and aggressors. All human history, from the ancient times to the 21st century, demonstrates this.
Potential aggressors prey on weak victims, not strong ones. Weakness is provocative; it entices aggressors to commit actions they would otherwise refrain from.
And it is ESPECIALLY important to build up and show strength in the face of POWERFUL aggressors like Russia and China. They, having dramatically built up their economic and military strength, are so self-confident, so sure of their power, so emboldened and arrogant, that ONLY superior military and economic power, combined with a proven willingness to use both, can deter them from making more mischief.
Rand’s argument is essentially: “Russia is a geopolitical and military superpower, so let’s be weak in the face of such power and play nice with it.” That is a recipe for aggression, death, and destruction.
But Rand Paul, despite his pious assurances that he supports a Reaganite “Peace Through Strength” foreign policy, clearly doesn’t understand that, and never will. He claims Obama’s “reset” (read: appeasement) policy has been good for America – even though it is that failed “reset” policy that got us into this mess in the first place!
“We ought to be, I think, proud of where we’ve gotten with that relationship, and even when we have problems with Russia, realize that we’re in a much better place than wer were once upon a time.”
At a time when most Americans have realized that Obama’s “reset” policy has been an utter and disastrous failure, Paul thinks it has worked great and thinks the US should be “proud” of it!
Dictators and aggressors like Putin will not cease attacking weaker victims, and threatening the United States, if the US continues its utterly failed “reset” (read: appeasement) policy towards Russia, China, and Iran. This is the very policy that got us into the current mess in the first place. Yet, Rand wants to double down on it.
Rand also says the US should “avoid antagonizing Russia over Ukraine” because Ukraine has, for a long time, been in Russia’s sphere of influence. “The Ukraine has a long history of either being a part of the Soviet Union or within that sphere.”
It’s true that Ukraine has long been in Russia’s orbit – but NOT by its own free will! NO country on Earth has ever freewillingly been in Russia’s sphere of influence! All countries which have ever been in Moscow’s orbit fell into it as a result of Russian aggression, whether an overt invasion and occupation (as in Ukraine’s case) or through Russian-sponsored coups (e.g. Cuba and Nicaragua) and guerilla wars (e.g. Vietnam).
The only reason why Ukraine has been under Moscow’s yoke for a long time is because of Russian occupation – that is, Russian domination imposed by force.
Now Ukraine is trying to break free of Moscow’s yoke – and THAT is why Russia has invaded it.
But Rand doesn’t stop there. Not only does he advocate more appeasement of Russia, he falsely accuses America of telling Ukraine what to do. He told the WaPo on Feb. 25th:
“I don’t think it behooves us to tell the Ukraine what to do.”
You are lying yet again, Senator. No American politician is telling Ukraine what to do. The US, along with the European Union, is simply supporting (although inadequately and half-heartedly) Ukraine in its desire to free itself from the Russian yoke and integrate with the West – a choice the Ukrainian people have freewillingly made (and stood for even when their former dictator sent snipers and riot police against them).
The US has never dictated to the Ukraine what to do. OTOH, Russia has, and continues to. Russia has always adamantly opposed Ukraine’s possible integration with the West and last December even bribed the oligarchs in the Ukrainian parliament to steer Kiev away from the West. Now that the Ukranian people have ousted their former dictator Viktor Yanukovych and his oligarch chums, Putin has invaded the Ukraine – to ensure, by brute force if necessary, that Ukraine does not join the EU and does not integrate with the West.
Rand Paul is lying once again, in the “best” traditions of the RussiaToday/Alex Jones/Blame America First/Ron Paul crowd: he accuses AMERICA of telling another country what to do, when it is actually America’s adversary who is dictating to that country its future path.
Shame on you, Senator Paul, for lying so blatantly to the American people, for badmouthing America and your fellow Republicans while speaking to a liberal media outlet, for whitewashing and appeasing Russia, and for advocating treasonous policies!
Shame on you, Washington Post, for giving this traitor another venue to vent his anti-American garbage!
Shame on you, 31% of CPAC attendees, for voting for this traitor!
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 11, 2014
Satellite photos of the entrances to China’s secret, underground submarine bases in Sanya (Hainan Island) and Jianggezhuang (near Qingdao). Photo credit: Federation of American Scientists and Google Earth.
In a recent article for the “National Interest” magazine, UChicago professor John Mearsheimer, who is best known for advocating that the US dump Israel as an ally, falsely claims that “China’s military is inferior to that of the US, and not by a small margin.”
Mearsheimer gives no reason whatsoever for why he makes such an outlandish claim; he does so probably because of longstanding (and badly outdated) assumptions about China’s military still prevailing in Washington. Be that as it may, Mearsheimer is dead wrong. Period.
For the PLA (the Chinese military) is not inferior to the US military in ANYTHING.
Not in training – Chinese troops train as hard as their American counterparts, and women in the PLA get no special treatment or lower standards – UNLIKE the US military, where women have to complete tasks that even the weakest man could accomplish. And unlike the US military, the PLA is not plagued by LGBT celebration, feminism, political correctness, or a plague of pregnancies, sexual assaults, alcoholism, and drugs.
What’s more, PLA officers do not have a standard of life significantly better than that of enlisted PLA troops, and in messes, officers and enlisted personnel eat together. Not separately. Nor is China and its PLA plagued by an obesity epidemic – again, unlike the US, where First Lady Michelle Obama’s modest efforts to combat obesity are regularly dismissed as Nanny Statism.
China’s military is also better trained – and funding for its training has never been interrupted by a stupid budgetary mechanism like sequestration. The PLA has never had to ground its aircraft for a lack of funding to fly them. PLA pilots fly and train regularly, honing their skills in their versions of Red Flag/Blue Flag exercises.
In budgetary terms, those who downplay China’s military power often claim that China has a much smaller military budget than the US.
At the first glance, this seems true: Beijing’s official military budget, unveiled a few days ago, is $132 bn, and even though China hides a lot of its military spending off the books, outside its official budget, China’s military budget is estimated to be, at most, $240 bn per annum – less than half of the $580 bn requested by the DOD for the next fiscal year.
But in China, one dollar can buy much more than in the US. China’s military budget should be multiplied by a factor of at least three to account for these differences. Multiply $240 bn by 3, and you get $720 bn. Heck, multiply $240 bn by just 2, and you get $480 bn – just slightly less than the DOD’s requested base budget for the next fiscal year ($495 bn).
Moreover, China’s military budgets are devoted mostly to equipment, training, and military operations, whereas personnel and base costs are borne largely by provincial governments, not by the central government.
China’s military is also better led than the US military, which is run by careerists eager to please their political masters, such as General Martin Dempsey and Admiral Cecil Haney. By contrast, the PLA, while nominally subordinate to the Communist Party of China, is actually THE most powerful and most cohesive faction within the Party, and is led by professional, experienced officers such as Gen. Fang Fenghui (Chief of the General Staff Department), Adm. Wu Shengli (Commander of the PLA Navy), and Gen. Ma Xiaotian (a veteran fighter pilot and Commander of the PLA Air Force).
The CPC is split into several factions that constantly battle each other for influence, and no civilian faction has a decisive edge over the others, so CPC civilians routinely ask PLA generals and admirals to support them. The generals are happy to oblige – but at a price in terms of giving them greater budgets and policymaking influence.
Hence we have seen hawkish PLA generals and senior colonels gain more influence and make increasingly inflammatory statements, and PLA budgets increase by double digits every year of the last 25 years – even now as China’s economy slows down.
Which brings me to military equipment.
China has, for the last decade and a half, been rapidly shedding obsolete Soviet-licensed and domestic equipment and rapidly acquiring domestic, Russian, and reverse-engineered weapons in large quantities – so much so that now most of its naval and air equipment is very much modern and capable, and even more modern and lethal weapons are on the way. Let’s look at some of the categories of military equipment and compare what the US and Chinese militaries have:
Fighters: The first and absolute condition of victory in any war is attaining air superiority; as Field Marshal Erwin Rommel, the famous Desert Fox, said, fighting on the ground while your enemy controls the air is pointless. The entire US military depends on air superiority, and without it, will collapse like a deck of cards.
And collapse it will, for it has inexplicably neglected its fighter fleet for the last 25 years, while China has steadily modernized its own. It now has over 200 modern, highly capable J-11 Sinoflanker fighters (pictured above) and over 200 F-16-clone J-10 fighters. In addition, it has 76 modern Su-27 and 76 also modern (and quite lethal) Su-30MKK aircraft. On top of that, it has almost 400 old, but very agile and lethal J-7 MiG fighters (which can win dogfights easily by simply refusing to be level-flying targets) and 200 J-8 high-speed, high-altitude interceptors. The PLAAF is now also beginning to receive the new J-16, another modern, high performance Chinese Flanker variant.
On the other hand, the US has fewer than 400, mostly obsolete and aging, F-15 fighters, around 1,200 non-competitive short-ranged F-16s (also largely obsolete), and around 180 modern and highly stealthy F-22 Raptors. I’m omitting the Hornets and Super Hornets of the Navy, for they aren’t even fighters but ground attack jets and wouldn’t stand a chance against PLAAF aircraft.
How exactly are PLAAF fighters superior? Owing to their combination of high speed, a high ceiling, superb radar aperture, and a large load of long-range missiles with diverse seekers, as well as high maneuverability, ease of turning and climbing, and powerful guns (30mm caliber on all Flankers).
In the future, the PLAAF will be decisively superior to the USAF. Later this decade, it will receive two very stealthy fifth-generation fighters, the J-20 and the J-31. These aircraft will render every other fighter on the planet, except the Raptor and the Russian PAK-FA, totally obsolete when they enter service.
The US, by contrast, is developing the hyper-expensive, and already obsolete, F-35 “Joint Strike Fighter”, which is not stealthy (except in the nose and only in some radar bands), poorly armed, very slow and low-flying, and too heavy and sluggish to prevail in air combat. (Nor was it ever designed, or even intended, to attain air superiority; the F-22 Raptor, of which the USAF wanted to procure 650, is supposed to accomplish that.) The defective F-35s that the DOD has ordered would, in case of any encounter with Chinese fighters, be gunned down like pigeons in a pest eradication programme.
Bases: In any war with the US in the Asia-Pacific, China would be playing on its home court; the US would be fighting a long way from the homeland. Utilizing its geographic advantage to the max, China has literally hundreds of airbases and airfields available in the mainland and in Burma. Many of these are semi-hardened, fully-hardened, or super-hardened. Many of them are located underground or built into the sides of mountains or hills. This renders these bases (i.e. the aircraft, hangars, fuel and ammunition depots, and command centers) completely immune to any US attack except with a deep earth penetrator like the GBU-57 MOP or the B83 nuclear bomb (which the Obama admin wants to retire).
All of these underground bases have entrances wide enough for J-7, J-8, J-10, Su-27, Su-30, and J-15 fighters to enter. Some of them can also accomodate the J-11, J-16, and the future J-20 and J-31. And some underground Chinese airbases can even shelter H-6 strategic bombers!
OTOH, the US has no hardened or even semi-hardened bases in the entire Pacific region. All US runways, hangars, depots, and command centers in the regions could easily be destroyed by even the weakest Chinese bombs or missiles. What’s more, the majority of US bases there are within the reach of China’s short-range ballistic missiles, and the rest can be easily reached by its medium-range ballistic and cruise missiles such as the DF-21, DF-25, DF-26, CJ/DH-10, and the Hongniao family. The newest Chinese missile, the DF-26C, has a range of at least 2200 miles (3520 kms).
Which brings me to the next category of weapons.
Land attack missiles: China, has noted above, has a huge, diverse, and highly accurate arsenal of missiles of all classes, which can be launched from ground launchers, siloes, aircraft, or ships. The longest-ranged of these, the ground-launched DH-10, has a range of 4,000 kms, the DF-26C a range of 3,520 kms, and the air-launched HN-3 a range of 3,000 kms while the air-launched CJ-10A can eke out 2,000 kms. The exact range of the DF-25 is unknown. China has huge inventories of these missiles.
By contrast, the US has no short-, medium-, or intermediate range ballistic missiles and no ground-launched cruise missiles whatsoever. The US is, in fact, prohibited from developing (let alone fielding) any ground-launched missiles of any range between 550 and 5,500 km by the INF Treaty with Russia. As one Russian official has said, it is unjust that only the US and Russia are banned from fielding such weapons, while everyone else is allowed to have them.
America’s air- and submarine-launched cruise missiles are unimpressive, to say the least. The much-touted JASSM-ER can eke out only 1,000 kms, and the sub-launched Tomahawk boasts a range of just 1,700 kms. Both of them are subsonic and thus easy for enemy air defenses to intercept.
Below you’ll find a map of the range of China’s air-launched cruise missiles. You can see it extends well beyond Guam and the Second Island Chain.
Air Defense Systems: China has a very dense network of highly-capable, long-ranged S-300 and HQ-9 air defense systems, and has even more capable S-400 systems on order. These can easily detect and shoot down any nonstealthy aircraft, including the EA-6B and the EA-18G, which, in order to attempt to jam these systems, would have to be close enough for their jammers to work – and that means TOO CLOSE to these systems, and well within their engagement envelope.
By contrast, US and allied air defense systems in the WestPac are scant and consist solely of obsolete, 1980s-vintage Patriot systems (whose range is only 28 kms) and their Japanese clones. These could be easily penetrated by any PLA aircraft or missiles.
Submarines: In addition to its growing, and increasingly quiet, fleet of nuclear-powered submarines, in which Type 093 and Type 095 class SSNs are replacing the old Type 091 Han class, the PLA Navy operates a large fleet of ultra-quiet Kilo-, Song, Yuan-, and Qin-class conventional submarines with air-independent propulsion (as in German, Swedish, and Australian submarines), making them almost undetectable.
OTOH, the US Navy has no conventional submarines and relies entirely on its noisy and obsolete Ohio class SSBNs for nuclear deterrence and also on its noisy and obsolete Los Angeles class attack submarines for sea control. The USN has only a handful of Seawolf and Virginia class submarines – and these are still noisier than conventional subs.
Mines: China has at least 100,000 naval mines – cheap, simple weapons which can cripple and sink even large warships. Yet, the US Navy is utterly unprepared for these weapons. It has only 13 minesweepers, all of which are operated by the US Naval Reserve because mine warfare is not considered a “sexy” mission by the USN, which prefers to obsess with hyper-expensive and highly vulnerable aircraft carriers – which, in today’s threat environment, are huge liabilities rather than assets.
By contrast, the much smaller UK Royal Navy has 15 minesweepers, all of which are operated by the regular RN.
Anti-ship missiles: China operates a wide range of (mostly supersonic, sea-skimming) anti-ship cruise missiles, most notably the SS-N-22 Sunburn, the SS-NX-30 Sizzler, and the Yingji family. One Sunburn missile would suffice to sink an aircraft carrier.
Also, China has fielded DF-21D anti-ship ballistic missiles with a range between 2,000 and 3,000 kms, and again, a single one would suffice to sink a flattop.
By contrast, the only anti-ship missile operated by the US military today is the under-ranged, slow, subsonic Harpoon. The USN is currently developing a replacement.
Nuclear weapons: The US currently has an edge over China in this area, with more total nuclear warheads (5,113) and deployed warheads (1,950) than China (which has up to 3,000 nuclear weapons, of which at least around 1,000 are deployed). However, China’s nuclear arsenal is rapidly growing, while the US is cutting its nuclear arsenal unilaterally. Also, China is rapidly modernizing its arsenal and making it survivable, while the US is not.
Anti-satellite weapons: This is as simple as “China has them, the US does not.” China has anti-satellite lasers as well as dozens of anti-satellite ballistic missiles, and also weapons that can jam US satellites without destroying them. China has repeatedly tested such weapons.
Small combat vessels: Chinese corvettes and missile boats, some of which are based on Australian catamarans, are better armed and better defended than the LCS, which, according to DOD weapon testers, are “not expected to survive in a combat environment.” Enough said.
Combat rifles: The US military’s standard assault rifles are the M16 and its shorter, lighter variant, the M4. Both of them are famous for their propensity to jam and malfunction. Their legendary malfunctions have cost many soldiers and Marines their lives. By contrast, China’s standard assault rifle is the simple, cheap, rugged, and supremely reliable AK-47, which will fire even if it gets dirty or even if you bury it in sand or mud. Moreover, it’s so much easier to operate that even children can use it. Furthermore, the AK-47′s 7.62 mm round can penetrate cinderblocks, bricks, and wood, while the M16′s and the M4′s smaller, weaker 5.56 mm round cannot. The Washington Times newspaper has even recently run a lengthy article detailing these rifles’ serious flaws.
I could go on and on, but the above comparisons already illustrate the point sufficiently. It is, in fact, the US military that is decisively inferior to that of China by the vast majority of criteria – from training, esprit de corps, good order, and discipline, to leadership, to the vast majority of weapon categories.
In a confrontation with the PLA, the US military would be like a virgin during her first night. Easy.
The American people need to stop listening to those who want to lull them into a false sense of security and start demanding that Congress a) fund the US military sufficiently, and b) spend the money in the most efficient way possible, with the least amount possible going to bloated personnel benefits programs and unneeded bases, and the maximum amount going to new weaponry and to training the troops.
Posted by zbigniewmazurak on March 10, 2014
Ronald Reagan was such a successful President – especially in the foreign policy realm – that virtually all Republicans today want to project themselves as the next Reagan and claim that their foreign policy is the same as Reagan’s in order to woo national security oriented voters.
One such politician is Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY). Because his principal rival for the 2016 Republican nomination, Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX), has distinguished himself from Paul by adopting Reagan’s foreign policy principles while exposing Paul as the neo-isolationist that he is, the Kentucky Senator is desperate to defend himself.
But in fact, it is Rand Paul, NOT Ted Cruz or other Republicans, who is warping and distorting the Gipper’s foreign policy. Let me demonstrate how.
Rand Advocates Deep Defense Cuts
Rand advocates deep, crippling cuts in America’s defenses, including and beyond sequestration; withdrawing US troops from strategically important bases around the world which are needed for power projection; isolationism masquerading as noninterventionism; and opposes even the most modest sanctions on Iran, claiming they would lead to war (a false claim that the anti-defense Left, including the Ploughshares Fund, also makes). Indeed, Rand has said that “not only should the sequester be maintained”, but that government spending, including defense spending, should be cut even further – as if the sequester’s and pre-sequester Obama defense cuts were not deep enough.
As a reminder, in his first two years, Obama killed over 50 crucial weapon programs, including the F-22 Raptor fighter (the only aircraft capable of defeating the newest Russian and Chinese fighters), the Zumwalt class destroyer, the Kinetic Energy Interceptor, the Multiple Kill Vehicle for kinetic missile defense interceptors, and much more. In 2011, Obama cut another $178 bn from the defense budget under the guise of efficiencies.And in August 2011, Obama demanded and obtained another $1 trillion in defense cuts over the FY2012-FY2012 decade, including a $550 bn sequester that will take defense spending to $493 bn (less than 3% of America’s GDP) next year and keep in there until the mid-2020s!
Yet, Rand Paul thinks these defense cuts are not sufficient and demands even deeper, more crippling, defense cuts. This completely belies his claim that
“I believe, as he did, that our National Defense should be second to none, that defense of the country is the primary Constitutional role of the Federal Government.”
If the cuts required by the sequester (let alone the deeper cuts Rand demands) are implemented, the US military will be gutted. It will be a paper tiger, not a military force “second to none.”
Reagan would NEVER advocate such idiotic policies, and indeed throughout his entire presidency implemented the very OPPOSITE of the policies Rand advocates. OTOH, Ted Cruz – unlike Rand Paul – does support a Reaganite foreign policy: rebuilding America’s defenses, standing up to dictators like Putin where it matters, but avoiding being drawn into irrelevant or murky jihadist viper pits like Syria.
But it gets even worse. In the Breitbart article cited above, Rand not only distorts the Gipper’s foreign policy, he shows he completely doesn’t understand what that policy was and how it worked, and demonstrates – there, as well as in his recent (Feb. 25th) Washington Post op-ed – that he does NOT support a Reaganite “Peace Through Strength” foreign policy.
He claims that:
“Reagan also believed in diplomacy and demonstrated a reasoned approach to our nuclear negotiations with the Soviets. Reagan’s shrewd diplomacy would eventually lessen the nuclear arsenals of both countries.”
Leaving aside the undisputable fact that cutting America’s nuclear deterrent has proven to be a foolish mistake, it was Reagan’s toughness, not diplomacy, that won the Cold War. In fact, it was his toughness that brought the Soviet Union back to the arms reduction barganining table in the first place.
The Soviets returned to the negotiating table because they knew the US could keep up the arms race for long, while their own economy was flagging (and in 1991, it collapsed, as did the USSR itself) and couldn’t really sustain the arms race any longer, especially with the costs of the Afghan war, the Chernobyl disaster, and the late 1980s’ oil glut added. (Reagan convinced Saudi Arabia to dramatically increase its oil output to cut global oil prices and thus undermine Moscow’s oil-dependent economy).
I’ll repeat it again: it was Reagan’s TOUGHNESS, his harsh policies towards the USSR, that brought the Soviets back to the bargaining table and eventually won the Cold War. Not diplomacy, not detente, not nice words, not his friendship with Gorbachev.
Reagan never sheathed the sword – the sword was always hanging over the Soviets’ heads. And that’s PRECISELY why Gorbachev agreed to make concessions.
Rand further claims that:
“Many forget today that Reagan’s decision to meet with Mikhail Gorbachev was harshly criticized by the Republican hawks of his time, some of whom would even call Reagan an appeaser.”
But, as demonstrated above, it was Reagan’s TOUGH POLICIES, not diplomacy or nicety, that brought the Soviets back to the bargaining table. And Gorbachev initially wasn’t in a mood to make concessions. It was not until he understood the US was in a far stronger negotiating position, and when Reagan revealed the documents Col. Ryszard Kuklinski (a Warsaw Pact defector) handed over to the CIA, that Gorbachev began to make concessions.
(At the first Reagan-Gorbachev meeting, in 1985, the Soviet leader was initially as stubborn as his predecessors, not willing to make policy concessions. Then, Reagan’s Defense Secretary, Cap Weinberger, took his ace out of his sleeve: he gave the maps [stolen by Colonel Kuklinski] of secret Soviet bunkers, built for nuclear war, to Reagan, who gave them to Gorbachev, who in turn gave them to Marshal Sergei Akhromeyev, the Soviet Chief of the General Staff, who accompanied Gorby. Akhromeyev was very scared upon seeing the documents, and explained their importance to the civilian Gorbachev. From then on, the Soviets were more willing to make concessions.)
Rand also believes firmly in a soft, appeasement-like policy towards Russia – ignoring the fact that it was such policy that led to the current Crimean crisis in the first place. He falsely claims in his WaPo op-ed that America’s relationship with Russia should be “respectful” and that:
“There is a time for diplomacy and the strategic use of soft power, such as now with Russia. Diplomacy requires resolve but also thoughtfulness and intelligence.”
No. Diplomacy has had its time – and has dismally failed, as usual. Now is the time for FIRMNESS and MANLINESS. Now is the time to impose the harshest sanctions on Russia that are possible and to dramatically increase oil and gas production in the US (ANWR, NPRA, OCS, shale formations, authorizing the Keystone Pipeline) and to export these fuels to Europe to dramatically reduce its dependence on Russia for hydrocarbons. This would strike Russia where it would really hurt Moscow – and accomplish America’s goals without a single soldier and without firing a shot.
As for a “respectful” relationship with Russia – tell that to Vladimir Putin. Lecture him about “respectful” relationships, Mr Paul, not your fellow Republicans. Putin’s Russia has, in recent years:
- Invaded two sovereign countries on false pretexts, and in reality because they started aligning themselves with the West.
- Threatened a nuclear attack on the US or its allies at least 15 times.
- Repeatedly flown nuclear-armed bombers into US and allied airspace (and even into the airspace of neutral Sweden) on many occassions, even once on July 4th,
- Provided diplomatic protection to Iran, North Korea, and Syria, nuclear fuel and reactors to Iran, weapons to Iran and Syria, and sold tons of advanced weapons to China – weapons which will be used to kill American troops.
- Murdered journalists and other dissidents (e.g. Anna Politkovskaya, Alexander Litvinenko), and jailed many others, opposing the Putin regime.
- Conducted a huge military buildup that continues to this day and is slated to continue for long but which long ago has exceeded Russia’s legitimate defense needs.
- Repeatedly violated the INF treaty by testing and deploying missiles banned by the treaty.
And the US is supposed to have a “respectful” relationship with such a hostile regime, Senator Paul? Are you on drugs? Who is your foreign policy advisor, Pat Buchanan?
In short, Rand has shown, once again, that he is NO Reaganite, that he is virtually indistinguishable from his father on policy matters, and that he clearly does not believe in a “peace through strength” policy. Furthermore, he’s distorting the Gipper’s foreign policy record. Conservatives must not allow him to fool them; he would continue and even double on Obama’s failed twin policies of unilateral disarmament and appeasement of America’s adversaries. Just like Obama, Paul advocates appeasement towards the world’s most dangerous regimes, from Russia, to Iran, to Syria. No real conservative would ever vote for him.