Carrier-Killing Missle Being Developed in China. One Landed in My Back Seat

Posted on August 5, 2010


Experts have known for about a decade that the Chinese have been developoing a remarkable weapon that could change the balance of power  in the Pacific region. Called the Dong Feng 21D, it is an “unprecedented carrier-killing missile that can hit moving targets.” Launched from land, it will have accuracy that will allow it to hit even the most advanced of our aircraft carriers at sea at a distance of 900 miles. [AP via Yahoo News]

Secretary of State Gates sounds as if the US has been sitting on its hands just watching this unfold while planning a naval power handover speech:

“When considering the military-modernization programs of countries like China, we should be concerned less with their potential ability to challenge the U.S. symmetrically — fighter to fighter or ship to ship — and more with their ability to disrupt our freedom of movement and narrow our strategic options,” he said.

Gates said China’s investments in cyber and anti-satellite warfare, anti-air and anti-ship weaponry, along with ballistic missiles, “could threaten America’s primary way to project power” through its forward air bases and carrier strike groups.

China is developing this and other equipment that are called “anti-access” weapons.  The US sees this trend as “worrisome.”  Hand-wringing will not help here but our military seems to be into just that.  Worrisome indeed.  It is not simply China that we would face off with one of these.  It would be anyone in the world to whom they had sold one.  China is very active in the middle east as an arms vendor and, as in everything else to do with trade, she does not much care about the local politics.

A trip to Janes.com and a review of its archives will soon give you a complicated overview of who is selling arms to whom.  We say we want world peace yet to eat, we sell armaments to obliterate each other.  Somewhere in all of this, the grubby grasping greed factor needs to be redirected and sensible men and women need to take over but this will never happen.  Too many stake holders in military weaponry manufacture and sales.  Come to think of it, if we do start a war somewhere with someone, we would have to put in a call to China first.  They make our military uniforms as well as missiles that can take out our carriers.

Post Note:  This week I drove some students for luncheon at a Chinese restaurant about a half hour from my home.  The Chinese student was concerned because he did not do well in cars.  He and the Korean student complained that where they live, they don’t drive far in them.

After luncheon and after the Chinese student had thrown up all over the back seat of my vehicle, I turned to him and said in humor: you will never be able to take over this country if you don’t get accustomed to riding in the back seats of US cars.  Travel of a 1/2 hour is nothing here.  He smiled and queried weakly: “Are we that frightening”?  “No,” I responded, not when you demonstrate your humanity in this way.”

Let’s hope what he hurled that day is the only Chinese missile I will have to endure in my lifetime.  By-the-way, we have become friends.