I have a new weekly gig at the Diplomat Flashpoints blog. First entry:
The proliferation of flat deck aircraft carrying warships in East Asia creates problems for the sort of static analysis of maritime requirements that General Wang Haiyun’s contribution represents. Generating expectations for warfighting needs in absence of good estimates of potential enemy capabilities is extremely difficult. While static analysis of maritime interests (the North Sea Fleet and the South Sea Fleet each require an operational carrier, for example) has its value, it is very likely that China, India, Japan and the United States will all begin to think dynamically and strategically about their force needs. Another way of phrasing this is that any credible understanding of China’s maritime needs requires an estimation of Indian, Japanese, and American naval capabilities, and of how those states will respond to Chinese expansion.