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China’s Military Tech 20 Years Behind U.S.’

by John Reed on June 8, 2011

Less than a month after Chinese defense officials came out and said that the PLA doesn’t compare to the United States military, the Asian giant’s defense minister quantified that statement, saying that China’s armed forces are about 20 years behind the U.S. technologically.

In fact, he called the gap “big” and maintained that China is only building up its military to defend its sovereignty and “core interests”. Hmmm, Taiwan, anyone?

Here’s what Chinese Gen. Liang Guanglie said about the PLA’s modernization at the annual Shangri-La Asian security summit, writes my old colleague Wendell Minnick at Defense News:

There is a 20-year gap between China and the U.S. military in equipment, weapons and systems, Chinese Defense Minister Gen. Liang Guanglie told the 10th Shangri-La Dialogue on June 5 in Singapore.

“I would call the gap big,” he said. Liang acknowledged that China’s military modernization has improved, but the “main battle equipment of our services … is mainly second-generation weapons.” China does not have a large arsenal of third-generation weapons, systems or platforms. “For example, the army is still being motorized, not mechanized,” he said.

This kind of reminds us of what we all know. Even China’s newest military gear is reminiscent of Western or Soviet technology from about 20 years ago, or more. I mean, its first operational carrier is a 20+ year-old Soviet hull with updated electronics and even its stealth fighter is rumored to have been build with secrets stolen from the USAF’s 30 year-old F-117A design.

Still, anyone can see the PLA is advancing at a decent clip and as China’s economy grows and its spy services steal more secrets, it may advance even quicker than it has over the past few decades (in my humble  non-China expert opinion).

And while China’s miliary hardware may still lag behind the U.S.’, its cyber capabilities, considered by most to be critical to waging 21st Century warfare may be on par with or ahead of the U.S.’

 

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{ 89 comments… read them below or add one }

LanceKant June 8, 2011 at 10:45 am

Is the USAF in charge of cyberwarfare? Or does the FBI and/or CIA take command on attacks to America' cyber infrastructure?

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none June 8, 2011 at 8:20 pm

The USAF runs point on cyberwarfare

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Jeff m June 9, 2011 at 1:30 am

I’m an expert on cyber security and let me tell you, if you thought stealth helicopters are amazing then you’d be blown away by the us cyber arsenal. You know these days your computer doesn’t even need an internet connection to be hacked, everything has wireless devices, how secure do you think your wireless keyboard is? Your cell phone? Does your cell phone have your email password? Do you think any of these could be reached with a 100-meter antenna in low earth orbit? And do you think the us military hasn’t tried any of this already with dozens of spy satellites? China is at the script kiddy level, the US military invented the internet let’s not forget either, they own the world right now and don’t have enough data centers to process the floods of incoming intel. One phone call from Bin Ladens doorstep is all it took to find him. It is obvios when you connect the dots.

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TLAM Strike June 9, 2011 at 9:33 am

“China is at the script kiddy level”

I agree. I know a guy who attended an computer security seminar in the PRC and the most complicated threats they talked about were hacking email accounts and defacing web pages.

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blight January 28, 2012 at 11:37 pm

Then again, the Soviets had seminars on keeping fungus off their wheat while Biopreparat was brewing all sorts of craziness.

I imagine being totally one-upped by Soviet super-secret programs made government types paranoid for decades: and that is why paranoid civil servants nailed a Sudanese pharma plant and grew suspicious of Saddam and his "WMD" program: because it was a pattern of behavior they'd seen before in the Soviet Union.

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Bill August 14, 2013 at 1:55 am

If China is so far behind then how is it they were able to steal terabytes of information on the US stealth program?

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padgett November 19, 2011 at 7:19 pm

USAF has their own cyber division

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Bill August 14, 2013 at 1:51 am

Seems to me the US needs to improve on its cyber technology 10 fold and stop the cyber attacks by North Korea, China and Russia. Why we would ever have such information on computers with access to the internet I have no idea. Seems to me, keeping classified information on internal computers only would be the smart thing to do!

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Musoke Gerald September 21, 2013 at 10:07 am

No one knows as far as that is concerned.

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Steve June 8, 2011 at 10:56 am

20 years behind in certain areas, sure. Cyber-on par, Nuclear-on par, 5 years from now-pretty much all on par.

Let's not be stupid and let our guard down. This is just a smarter arms race.

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padgett November 19, 2011 at 7:20 pm

nuclear is not on par.

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passingby March 25, 2012 at 6:43 am

depends on what you mean by "nuclear", I guess. In some areas of nuclear research, China is already known to be far ahead of the US.

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TrustButVerify March 25, 2012 at 4:42 am

Agree with Padgett, how do you figure they have nuclear parity, with their handful of ICBMs, no long range bombers, and no operational SLBMs?

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passingby March 25, 2012 at 6:39 am

I believe Steve is talking about technology, not number of warheads. China's quantity of ICBMs is not known (you trust Western speculations but don't verify). China has operational SLBMs. You can easily verify this.

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bill April 27, 2013 at 8:01 pm

Nuclear is not on par, china has around 1000 nuclear warheads as us has 8500 and counting.

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Riceball June 8, 2011 at 10:59 am

"Still, anyone can see the PLA is advancing at a decent clip and as China’s economy grows and its spy services steal more secrets, it may advance even quicker than it has over the past few decades (in my humble non-China expert opinion)."

That's what I've always said, especially when people scoff at China's military capability by citing how they're something like 20 years behind us. What they forget is that for a long while they were much more than 20 years behind, more like at least 30 or more, fielding 50's/60s tech and in a relatively short amount they've gained 10 – 20 years worth of military tech to become only 20 years behind us.

This is the reason why we can't afford to rest on our laurels and not continue to innovate and develop newer and better weapons systems because at this rate China will probably manage to close the gap by another 10 years within 5. If we don't continue our R&D to stay ahead then within another 10 -15 years China will have caught up to us and will be ready to pass us by and by that time it's too late to try to catch up, not if we continue to develop and field weapons systems at our current rate like we did with the F-22 and are with the F-35.

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Joseph Lyndon Yuipco Awayan May 16, 2012 at 7:48 am

Scientest for a high end technology, how about trying to form a group of social scientest , to over shadow a society in their thinking pattern, chinese and american are both the same preparing themselves to eliminate each other, what a bunch of people.

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Prodozul June 8, 2011 at 11:14 am

What's the difference between motorized and mechanized?

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TLAM Strike June 8, 2011 at 11:25 am

In an nutshell Motorized means trucks and jeeps while Mechanized means APCs and IFVs.

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FormerDirtDart June 8, 2011 at 12:01 pm

I guess that depends on whose definition you're using for both. The Soviet era, and current Russian Motorized Rifle Division/Brigade/ Regiments certainly weren't rolling around in Trucks and jeeps

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IFB June 9, 2011 at 4:45 pm

It depends on who you ask. One definition is that motorized moves to the battlefield in their vehicles then dismounts to fight leaving their vehicles behind. Mechanized uses their vehicles for support and movement during the battle. This doesn't really work in an asymmetric war, though.

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TLAM Strike June 8, 2011 at 11:29 am

Lets see the M1 Abrams was deployed 31 years ago, the Osprey was first flown 22 years ago, the YF-22 testbed was first flow 21 years ago, the USS Seawolf was launched 16 years ago. So most of our kit is around 20 years old already? Does that mean China’s is in the 60′s?

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anon June 8, 2011 at 11:32 am

That is more in line with suggesting that they are approaching the Block 0 of the weapons systems we are fielding today. If you simply examine weapon system to weapon system one might assume there is rough mechanical parity. They have small arms rocket artillery, tube artillery, tanks, IFVs and trucks, SSMs and ICBMs. However it ignores the tech that ties everything together, which is largely responsible for what puts the US ahead of other countries, moreso than the individual weapons systems. Can they watch a commando takedown in Pakistan in real time from thousands of miles away? Can they send UAVs commands from multiple timezones away with sat-com infrastructure?

Not yet.

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joe June 9, 2011 at 10:56 am

True – but the difference in capability between an M1(then) and an M1A2 TUSK (now) is very significant:

120mm gun vs 105mm
Remote Weapons Stations used whilst buttoned up
Networked command & positioning systems
Additional Reactive & Cage Armour

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Taxandrian June 8, 2011 at 11:30 am

20 years behind, huh? Anyone can be killed using a 1600 vintage black powder rifle.

A hypothetical war between the US and China is nuts. There's too much water in between. That is, if one observes the rule that to win a war, you need boots on the other man's ground.

A 'war' would simply be an economic conflict (as it almost always is) between two contries. Three, because Russia will want to get involved – an not on China's side. See WWTwo, Northern/Southern Economic Reservoir, anyone?

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TLAM Strike June 8, 2011 at 11:41 am

"A hypothetical war between the US and China is nuts. There's too much water in between. That is, if one observes the rule that to win a war, you need boots on the other man's ground. "

Mahan would disagree. Crossing the Pacific is "A gut bustin', mother-lovin' Navy war" situation. Battles on land are to be avoided unless they force the enemy to commit their fleet. Destroy their fleet and you control the sea lanes and can blockade them in to submission. How reliant are we on overseas trade, and how does it arrive in the US again?

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Matt June 8, 2011 at 11:47 am

China is clearly not 20 years behind in tech. They might view themselves as 20 years behind in being able to project power, but not in technology.

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Brian June 8, 2011 at 11:56 am

China is not stupid enough to start a war with the US or even tiawan. Even that pipsqueak nation could drown half of china by hitting the 3 gongs dam and following up sinking tankers in critical trade routes. Mass starvation would ensue in a couple of weeks, casualties in the 10′s of millions. It would be suicide!

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ziv June 9, 2011 at 7:03 am

I have wondered about what would happen if someone destroyed the 3 Gorges dam. First, what would the casualties be, second, what would the economic cost be to the Chinese, third, what would the world reaction be to the nation that obtained the equivalent of a weapon of mass destruction even if it was 'merely' 3 or 4 bunker busting bombs like the BLU-113. Taiwan is the most obvious candidate to defend its interests in this manner, but it is not out of the realm of the possible that China could end up in a shooting war with Japan in a generation or two. But getting the weapons 900 km inland and past the existing air defenses would be a bit difficult.

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kevin December 2, 2013 at 10:38 am
@Earlydawn June 8, 2011 at 12:17 pm

As someone poignantly pointed out in an earlier comment, "All Warfare is Based on Deception."

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Dfens June 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm

One more airplane program where we spend 20 years in development and finish off with building few, if any, aircraft and they'll be all caught up. Heck, if our defense contractors have their way they can spend the next 25 years doing development and never build a single weapon just like the Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle program. After all, that's 25 years of record profits for them, and the fact that the US taxpayer, and more importantly the US soldier — already an endangered species — will have nothing to show for all that money being spent is just a bonus.

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Tom June 8, 2011 at 1:59 pm

keep in mind that it is not abnormal to have a 20 year research and development history for almost every mature, history writing and war fighting (!) weapon system. A system that has been developed within i.e. 3-5 years has usually weaknesses, the risk that it has never shown its weaknesses during this timeframe is much higher. Do you really want to risk a soldiers life for a chopper type system that has been developed and reached IOC in 5 years? I prefer the Osprey then.
Keep also in mind that programs that have been cancelled after a long development stage like the EFV or the Comanche, have an impact to its successors. So not every time the money is lost and all was worth nothing.

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Dfens June 8, 2011 at 4:26 pm

SR-71 was designed in 18 months. It was only knocked down by the inability of Lockheed to milk it as a cash cow like they could the U-2, which requires constant upgrades to stay one step ahead of air defenses. Spouting the usual military industrial complex crap, Tom?

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TLAM Strike June 8, 2011 at 11:03 pm

The He 162 jet fighter was designed in 10 days, selected for production in 3 weeks and put in to production in four months from project inception, by VE day (eight months from project start) 172 aircraft were delivered, 200 were finished and awaiting delivery and 600 were under construction.

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Thomas L. Nielsen June 9, 2011 at 2:14 am

An unfortunate choice of example, as the He 162 was a crap aircraft! The development and production schedule was the result of desperate over-optimism, not engineering acumen. The plane was unstable, difficult to fly, even for experienced pilots, and certainly not the "people's fighter" it was intended to be.

Regards & all,

Thomas L. Nielsen
Luxembourg

bigRick June 8, 2011 at 1:45 pm

Japan was not stupid enough to start a war with the US either!
Germany was not stupid enough to start WWII on two fronts either!
Saddam was not stupid enough to invade Kuwait either!

All wars basically start when the bad guys assume (or know) that the good guys are weak (militarily or politically) China is beginning to think we are weak. That's why they're doing the "dog and pony" look at us "poor Chinese military" act

China's long term prospects are not good. They are running out of water and arable land due to rapid desertfication. They will either move north or south or both.

When countries feel they are painted into a corner then history tells us that's when wars start. The next war is coming like it or not.

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Yoyo March 18, 2012 at 1:15 am

It is stupid and pathetic to say the US is good guy. Everyone knows the US is evil and trouble-maker country.

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Mastro June 8, 2011 at 1:55 pm

We went through the '80's and even the post-Tianneman Square '90's with no concerns over a Chinese threat.

China really has to rethink its rearmament- what do they want that they feel a need to risk an arms race/cold war with the US?

Is their self esteem really that bad? Get over it

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blinded1 June 8, 2011 at 2:22 pm

Will China have 11 Minitz class carriers in 20 years?

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TLAM Strike June 8, 2011 at 2:58 pm

They don't have to, our Carriers have to divide up between the Atlantic, Med, Indian Ocean and Pacific. Theirs just have to operate in the Pacific.

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Byron Skinner June 8, 2011 at 2:39 pm

Good Morning Folks,

The assessment here even though modest, China is more likely in many area of military technology still in the 1940′s. Since the US is still moving forward in the area of military technology each day China is getting farther behind.

The statement routinely issued by US right wing think think tanks regarding China and their accelerated development of military technology is pure nonsense.

ALLONS,

Byron Skinner

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anon June 8, 2011 at 5:48 pm

That would suggest zero improvement since the PLA equipped itself from captured PLA stocks of WW2-era equipment along with leftover IJA equipment and Soviet military aid. Surely you don't mean 1940's?

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USAF SSgt June 9, 2011 at 8:16 am

Are you kidding? They are closer to the 2000s than anything else! You should seriously consider researching before you start typing and getting an MRI because there is something wrong in your head.

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Yoyo March 18, 2012 at 1:20 am

Another idiot thought China is primitive human-beings. This kind of people should be sympathetic because with their naive and illiterate thought, causes the US to extinction.

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superraptor June 8, 2011 at 3:09 pm

It is hard to say if China is really that far behind. I am just surprised that we don't ask the PLA how many new nuclear warheads they are deploying each year. I suspect that they are secretly pursuing a 10000 plus nuclear warhead strategic buildup while we are dismantling our ICBMs because of START2. What great American Strategery.

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@ohfuckinreally June 8, 2011 at 4:42 pm

I too enjoy basing strategies on unfounded speculation.

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superraptor June 8, 2011 at 5:18 pm

speculation fueled by unknowns unknowns of China's nuclear weapons program, new Chinese ICBMs with 10 MIRVs each shown at Chinese Military parades and our unwillingness to be inquisitive about this issue maybe because we don't want to find out as we then may have to expand again our own nuclear arsenal again which is not what this administration wants politically. By the way, you only can claim "Unfounded speculation" if you have hard evidence to the contrary, The problem is there is no data one way or the other which means that my speculation could actually be true.

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Thomas L. Nielsen June 9, 2011 at 2:19 am

"By the way, you only can claim "Unfounded speculation" if you have hard evidence to the contrary".

Wrong! "Unfounded speculation" means speculation without basis in data. It doesn't stop being "unfounded speculation" just because nobody can prove you wrong.

Regards & all,

Thomas L. Nielsen
Luxembourg

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superraptor June 9, 2011 at 7:41 am

well, how do you explain new ICBMs with multiple warheads shown at Chinese military parades. Why so naive?.

STemplar June 8, 2011 at 3:59 pm

The Chinese Achilles heel is oil. They can develop whatever system they like because they do not have the refining capacity to sustain a military operation of any significance. I was reading one petroleum industry page and the last week of May the central government had to order all refineries to 100% capacity to meet the spring season demand because of agriculture. Compare the US, we are in combat operation is 3 theaters and major disaster relief support in Japan across the entire globe and out economy goes happily chugging along. If China tries to involve itself in something like Taiwan for the short to mid term it has to essentially shut down major parts of its industry or let lots of Chinese people starve to death.

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anon June 8, 2011 at 7:46 pm

They're not equivalents. The EFV was basically a high performance boat that could amble about on land. Most other amphibious tanks have sub-optimal performance at sea, but at least the PLA (and the Russian) family of amphibious vehicles also includes direct-fire gun systems, and not just the EFV's 30mm.

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Dfens June 8, 2011 at 7:47 pm

You know what I think is funny? I think it is funny that China's military build-up is cited as some sort of "vast right wing conspiracy" to increase defense spending. We didn't beat the Soviet Union by outspending them on defense. We beat the Soviet Union because capitalism provided better weapons while costing less than development of equivalent weapons cost the Soviet Union. It was our efficiency that finally killed the Soviet Union.

Today, even the wildest estimates of what China is spending on new weapons programs has them spending somewhere around 1/10th of what we spend, and yet they've turned out a significant number of weapons that achieve near to more than parity with what our defense industry turns out for significantly less than these weapons cost us and they develop them in less time than it takes us. So what do we do, throw money at the situation and go down the failed road taken by the Soviet Union or go back to our capitalist roots in weapons development, in which case we get more bang for less buck? The scary thing is, many who consider themselves "conservatives" would opt for the former instead of the latter.

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padgett November 19, 2011 at 7:26 pm

we did tip Russia over because we were out spending them.

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blight January 28, 2012 at 11:35 pm

When normalized to the size of their real economies, they outspent us by percent of their national budget. They cranked out un-necessary missiles like sausages. I will push The Dead Hand: Untold Story of the Legacy of the Cold War. Fun read, on Amazon.

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blight January 28, 2012 at 11:35 pm

The Dead Hand: The Untold Story of the Cold War Arms Race and its Dangerous Legacy

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bigRick June 8, 2011 at 8:45 pm

History tends to repeat itself

It's the late 1930's all over again, take note:

-Again the US economy is in shambles
-again we have a socialist president attempting to institute major social and governmental change
-again we have unrest all over the world
-again we have a Eastern power who feels "dis-respected" and is attempting to right supposed historical "wrongs."
-again we have an Eastern power rapidly building up their military
-again, our military is in a down sizing phase
-and again we have an Eastern power claiming to be our "friends" but who really are our enemies
-and AGAIN we have people saving the "fill in the blank" will "never start a war, that would be crazy"

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Mike January 28, 2012 at 9:59 pm

You forgot one major difference; today we have a nuclear deterrence.

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blight January 28, 2012 at 11:33 pm

Oh please. FDR had enough neurons to rub together to rearm the military. He also was saddled with a populace that was unwilling to go to war again, which was true in Europe as well. We underestimate the damage World War 1 did to Europe, and how the consequences of seeing the first Great War changed everyone's understanding of what war was. Before WW1, war was glorious. Afterwards, it became horrible and evil. And after WW2, it became a tool of last resort and defense of sovereignty. And after 9/11, the idea of nation-state war has changed again.

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Chimp June 9, 2011 at 2:35 am

Lots of the older fellows… particularly of the Korean War generation (hats off to them… they did the job)… still view China as an agrarian country equipped with Soviet castoffs and informed by an ideology that views human life as worthless.

It used to be like that. No question.

It has changed. Go there. Take a look. I think pitching Chinese military technology as equivalent to early the mainstream early 90's is about right. Better than 1990 Britain, not quite as good as 1990 US kit. In terms of training and doctrine, however, I'd say it's more than 20 years behind.

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Thomas L. Nielsen June 9, 2011 at 1:36 pm

Please note that I have not suggested or claimed that your initial speculation was unfounded.

As stated above, my issue is exclusively with your statement that "you only can claim "Unfounded speculation" if you have hard evidence to the contrary".

The burden of evidence rests exclusively with whomever makes the statement. Consequently, it is not my (or anyone else's) job to show that your speculation is unfounded. It is your job to show that it is not.

Additionally, "unfounded" has nothing to do with true or false. "Unfounded" merely indicates that the statement or speculation is without basis in evidence. It may later be proven to be true or false, once evidence is available.

Regards & all,

Thomas L. Nielsen
Luxembourg

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dfgdgdf August 31, 2013 at 2:23 pm

you owned him.

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George June 18, 2011 at 8:16 pm

China is about 20 years behind, but if China and the United States were to go to war with each other, just look at the War in the East. Al-Qaeda (or however you spell it) is using guerilla warfare against the United States. The war would be over by now if the United States was experienced in Guerilla Warfare. Well I guess the war right now does count, but China and Al-Qaeda are two very different figures. China as a emerging super power, and Al-Qaeda, some terrorist army. China is experienced with guerilla warfare and not so much normal war. United States can't learn so well the concept of guerilla warfare. Both China and the United States do not want to go to war with each other right now. China lacks behind the United States a lot, dont take what I said for granted. Because you may understand it the wrong way.

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Sarfaraz Ahmed October 24, 2011 at 1:06 pm

PAKISTAN CHINA FRIENDSHIP LONGLIVE. IT'S AN ALL WEATHER FREIENDSHIP. AND PAKISTANI PEOPLE LOVE CHINESE BROTHERS. PROUD OF CHINA. AND IT'S TECHNOLOGY IS GETTING MORE MODERANIZED.

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blight October 31, 2011 at 8:25 pm

You'd think siding with the generals in Pakistan for the last 40 years would count for something. I guess not.

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Bill August 14, 2013 at 1:45 am

I suppose all the Billions the US gave pakistan don't mean anything! Hope you choke on those words when China's economy goes belly up because of unsustainable growth! And then pakistan will be begging the US for help!

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keyboard October 31, 2011 at 7:52 pm

I can say that "20 years behind" is definitely for only certain areas. And even then, 20 years means China is already possessing overall military strength equivalent of the '90s, after evening everything out. An example will be PLAAF vs PLAN, where its air fleet is made up for 40% 4-4.5gen that are more than sufficient against F-15, F-16 (J-10A,J-10B,J-11), while its J-20 will be comparable, if not exceed F-22 in some areas. In this aspect, this "chunk" represents the side of the PLAAF that's today's standards, while the J-8,J-7 represents the obsolete part that would equate into part of the "20 years behind" statement(although these will eventually find themselves allocated to other auxiliary services or less respectable roles as the newer systems replace them). Same goes to Chinese strategic airlift capability, which is rather limited without "blue-sky" capability". Chinese AEW,AWACS will be roughly in the early '00s. As for PLAN, it's naval fleet will be around mid-'80s-early '90s at best, which is also the weakest branch of the Chinese military. Ground-force wise, Chinese artillery systems and maybe even certain armor systems are more advanced than the US Army. As for its strategic missile command, aka 2nd Artillery, its ballistic missile forces may be behind for certain systems, but ones such as ASAT(anti-satellite) and ASBM, are definitely pioneering. With all that said, the "20 years behind" applies as a general statement, but there are definitely many areas that China is more than competitive in. And lastly something to pay attention will be their training, structure, and management. While more than likely will the methodology require some revision and possibly currently possessing an early '90s era of thought with certain aspects in the '00s(relative to the systems they yield), they were never field-tested against a real-time modernized comparable force, therefore it will be hard to know the truth to their capabilities.
In conclusion, the statement is true to a certain extent, but also simultaneously being both reserved, modest, and slightly deceiving. Lastly, something we overlooked will be the emphasis of pitting US military as the "standard military" to compare to. US military is the most advanced, equipped, and overdeveloped in the world, to the point of leading the gold by a far stretch. While China is currently still behind, it is actually the silver medal runner, and its overall capabilities are definitely a good distance ahead of the bronze, which will be the rest of the tier 1 developed states and powers. With that said, just because China is behind US doesn't mean it's behind by world standards. Alternatively, comparing to the rest of the world, China will definitely be the leading one if US doesn't exist in this world today.

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ALN March 25, 2012 at 3:36 am

China is nothing in front of us military mighty. I don't understand why to alarm, like we are scared of china??

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passingby March 25, 2012 at 9:23 am

I take it you are opposed to the current trillion-a-year US military budget, allegedly more than the rest of the world combined.

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Vec April 6, 2012 at 3:11 am

Carry on bluffing yourself and your self delusion

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Sam May 15, 2012 at 12:51 pm

It is interesting to read these comments and wonder what news is being read.
China is not all that far behind or the US Pacific fleet would have know the Chinese sub was following the about 5 years ago for over 50 miles. The fleet probably still wouldn't have know had the sub not surfaced within eyesight.

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Alex November 14, 2012 at 2:02 am

Ironic that a single sub can get into a fleet of top class carriers and destroyers…..

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Edward June 1, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Not sure why these countries need huge @ss militaries if domination doesn't even matter in this day and age.

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Tony June 13, 2012 at 9:34 am

USA vs.mChinanwar is unlikely. What is unlikely is China vs. Japan, Philippines, Vietnam, Singapore, NATO, Australia, Britain and USA. China has territorial disputes with almost all it's neighbors – Philippines, Japan, Russia, Vietnam.

In the Philippines,we do not like China. Hell, those guys are xenophobic, workaholic types who do not stand for anything. USA stands for equality, democracy. What does China stand for. They are racist mainlanders. People of Taiwan and hing kong are much better but do not trust the communist government. Do not worry about China, they have no friends except Pakistan! Lol. ..Pakistan is a joke!

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Kenny June 27, 2012 at 11:59 am

Ok first off, China is 20 years behind in general. This includes Nuclear Deterrence Operations, Special Operations, Air Superiority, Global Integrated ISR, Space Superiority, Command and Control, Cyberspace Superiority, Personnel Recovery, Global Precision Attack, Building Partnerships, Rapid Global Mobility and Agile Combat Support. Mechanized vehicle technology, Rifles, Intelligence gathering, Communications etc…China will never catch up, one reason is because our budget is tens of times larger than the Chinese military budget.

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Alex November 14, 2012 at 2:03 am

Look at ur revolutionary war then…..about the same situation here

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Will June 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm

the authors cyber piece was compelling, up until 6/2011 China had worlds fastest supercomputer, now Japan is ichiban….for now http://www.pcworld.com/article/243309/worlds_fast

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Will June 27, 2012 at 2:30 pm

sorry for bad gouge above, seems US IBM Sequoia at Livermore rules now at 16.32 Peta FLOPS vs Japan K's pevious 10.51….this is far outside the reach of Moore's Law

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Will June 27, 2012 at 2:31 pm
anon August 12, 2012 at 12:49 pm

Isn't Afghanistan and Iraq 20 years behind China? I don't see the US subduing those 2 countries very well. Technology isn't the answer or the be all and end all to everything. The barbarians didn't beat the romans because they had superior tech, neither did the viets against the west. US reliance on high tech gear can be a strength as well as a weakness.

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Anthony December 17, 2012 at 1:51 am

China may have an army of 20million soldiers of 1 billion soldiers, the U.S. technology could kill all of those with Predator Drones. The world military changed. No more soldier. vs. Soldier anymore, its Technology.

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kevin December 2, 2013 at 11:31 am
carpytnteyroyrw April 10, 2013 at 12:20 am
khoi Nguyen August 21, 2013 at 1:55 pm

History does repeat. Like in Vietnam, US did not do good in Afg. And Iraq bcuz lack of "propaganda" which in this case is "relegious propaganda". Again, if war between us and China, US might win the battle but not the people if we don't have a strong push in "propaganda". Since china claimed the whole china sea belong to china, they also started what I temporarilly call it "the love of our nation" propaganda. Especially in a comunist country where information is only 1 sided, people are brainwashed easily on the other side of the wall. In conclusion, even 20 yrs behind in hi-tech weapons, it is not easy for US to defeat china if lack of "propaganda"

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voke April 7, 2014 at 4:02 pm

its seems very naive to say china is 20yrs behind the usa,,,,pointing out that the current economical and industrial boom in china,,they can convert and they do convert civilian used gadgets like smartphone commercial jets into millitary purposes,,so at this time of age technology roams freely if yu have the cash,,and last time i checked china have the cash.

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Mastro June 8, 2011 at 2:36 pm

I thought the "last time" was the entire 20th Century.

The first 50 years were a disaster- after disaster- but the last 50 were OK.

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Thomas L. Nielsen June 9, 2011 at 10:04 am

I don't explain them, and as far as I know you may be entirely correct in your assessment of China's technological capabilities.

I simply take issue with your statement that "you only can claim "Unfounded speculation" if you have hard evidence to the contrary".

An unfounded speculation does not become any less unfounded just because it can't be proven wrong. An unfounded speculation only becomes less unfounded if you can provide evidence to support it.

Regards & all,

Thomas L. Nielsen
Luxembourg

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Sanem June 10, 2011 at 7:11 am

certainly not, China is all about freedom of opinion, human rights and world peace! (as interpreted by the Glorious Communist Party guidelines for Total World Dominance ofcourse)

China is evil, but then so is the US and every other government in the world, so you can't really hold that against them :D

although I'd still rather live in a an evil democray than an evil totalitarian state (you know, like the one with the flag that has red and stars in it)

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James June 18, 2011 at 8:29 pm

I really wonder why America over reacts to when China steals information from other countries and make this and that from it while America's "allies" are also stealing from America and America blames it on China. Look at the past news reports of cyberwarfare, American Military/Aerodynamic Industrial Company Lockheed Martin was attacked, interviewed people "I think it was China". Another attack was created and it was a very strong virus that attacked Silicon Valley computers, again, they thought it was from China. Why is China accused for hacking and stealing? Half the toys children play with right now have the label; MADE IN CHINA. So weird..

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