Scary stuff

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  • #36
Evo
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The Smoking Man said:
Lenovo has just been sold to China and they now supply blade systems to the US DOD for missile tracking. (http://news.com.com/Lenovo+links+wi...3-5779732.html?part=rss&tag=5779732&subj=news)
That's incorrect. Lenovo is a Chinese PC company that has recently merged with IBM's pc unit.

The decision of NORAD to go with the blade servers started in 2001 and installation is completed. The units in place have nothing to do with China. :rolleyes: The units were purchased from ClearCube Technology, not Lenovo.

I'm sure the merger with Lenovo is being discussed as to whether Norad will purchase any additional servers from them.

"IBM and Lenovo, China's largest PC company, announced plans to form the joint venture last month." (article date 1-05)

http://news.com.com/Lenovo+to+expand+beyond+China/2100-1047_3-5514734.html?tag=nl

http://news.com.com/IBM+sells+PC+group+to+Lenovo/2100-1042_3-5482284.html?tag=nl

http://news.com.com/NORAD+gives+thumbs+up+to+blade+PCs/2100-1003_3-5672824.html?tag=nl
 
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  • #37
Evo
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Townsend said:
:confused:

I was under the impression that military equipment had to me made in the USA. Well, not all of it of course but a part for missile tracking being made by China? That just does not sit well with me.
You are correct, the parts were not made by a Chinese company, The Smoking Man was mistaken, see my previous post.
 
  • #38
The Smoking Man
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Evo said:
That's incorrect. Lenovo is a Chinese PC company that has recently merged with IBM's pc unit.

Huh?

Lenovo is Ledgend and they just purchased the IBM PC Group:

http://news.com.com/IBM+sells+PC+group+to+Lenovo/2100-1042_3-5482284.html

cNet said:
IBM sells PC group to Lenovo
Published: December 8, 2004, 4:37 AM PST
By John G. Spooner and Michael Kanellos
Staff Writer, CNET News.com

update IBM will sell its PC division to China-based Lenovo Group and take a minority stake in the former rival in a deal valued at $1.75 billion, the companies announced Tuesday.

The two companies plan to form a complex joint venture that will make Lenovo the third-largest PC maker in the world, behind Dell and Hewlett-Packard, but still give IBM a hand in the PC business. The deal is expected to be completed in the second quarter.

Under the deal, IBM will take an 18.9 percent stake in Lenovo. Lenovo will pay $1.25 billion for the IBM PC unit and assume debt, which will bring the total cost to $1.75 billion.

Lenovo will pay roughly $650 million in cash and $600 million in securities.

Based on both companies' 2003 sales figures, the joint venture will have an annual sales volume of 11.9 million units and revenue of $12 billion, increasing Lenovo's current PC business fourfold.

Lenovo will be the preferred supplier of PCs to IBM and will be allowed to use the IBM brand for five years under an agreement that includes the "Think" brand. Big Blue has promised to support the PC maker with marketing and via its IBM corporate sales force. "

Lenovo is now going to take over the distribution of Clear Cube.

Under the deal, the two companies will cooperate to sell ClearCube's blade systems, initially to the customers Lenovo acquired when it bought IBM's PC unit. The units sold by Lenovo will bear ClearCube's brand. IBM Global Services already resells ClearCube desktop systems.

...

Putting the PCs in a rack cuts support and real estate costs, according to Raj Shah, chief marketing officer of ClearCube. Several financial firms and branches of the military have installed the company's computers. (The North American Aerospace Defense Command uses them to scan the sky for incoming missiles.)
 
  • #39
Evo
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The Smoking Man said:
Huh?

Lenovo is Ledgend and they just purchased the IBM PC Group:

http://news.com.com/IBM+sells+PC+group+to+Lenovo/2100-1042_3-5482284.html

Lenovo is now going to take over the distribution of Clear Cube.
Exactly! Read your own words. They will be selling Clear Cube going forward. This has absolutely nothing to do with the servers that were already purchased and installed by Norad PRIOR to Lenovo's involvement. Unless they have a time machine and plan to go back in time and sell to NORAD in the past. :rofl:
 
  • #40
China nd India

China is making a smart move in trying to normalize relations with India. If it is successful India will buy the cheaper Chinese high tech. And a whole lot more.
 
  • #41
Evo said:
Exactly! Read your own words. They will be selling Clear Cube going forward. This has absolutely nothing to do with the servers that were already purchased and installed by Norad PRIOR to Lenovo's involvement. Unless they have a time machine and plan to go back in time and sell to NORAD in the past. :rofl:

Since it is the miltary being discussed, "spare parts" will be the name of the game. Unless the Military planned ahead, whitch they usually don't.
 
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  • #42
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solutions in a box said:
Since it is the miltary being discussed, "spare parts" will be the name of the game. Unless the Military planned ahead, whitch they usually don't.
But there are other companies that sell the blade servers that they can switch to. I am sure that they can also buy blade servers that were manufactured prior to the IBM/Lenovo merger that they can cannibalize for parts.
 
  • #43
Evo
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solutions in a box said:
China is making a smart move in trying to normalize relations with India. If it is successful India will buy the cheaper Chinese high tech. And a whole lot more.
This could be a lucrative avenue for China.

http://news.com.com/Lenovo+mulls+separate+PC+brand+for+India/2100-1042_3-5745726.html?tag=nl

Or China could see quite a competitor emerging from India.

It appears that India is pursuing some innovative technological inroads addressing some of their unique challenges. This is an interesting read http://news.com.com/Indias+renaissance+The+100+computer/2009-1041_3-5752054.html

http://news.com.com/Indias+renaissance+Move+over,+China/2009-1041_3-5751994.html?tag=st.rc.targ_mb
 
  • #44
edward
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Evo

Thanks for the links :smile:
 
  • #45
danAlwyn
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It will be interesting to watch China deal with the problems of lack of arable land, rural poverty and corruption in the next twenty or thirty years. Hopefully they will come up with a nice, peaceful transition to a system that functions better. Otherwise things in that part of the world could get a little messy.

Seeing how China deals with Taiwan might be a good way to see how they deal with the rest of the countries in that part of the world. If China become more belligerent in the next couple of years that will probably set off all sorts of alarm bells. If they become more reconciliatory that will sit better.

By the way, Townsend

Townsend said:
They would not be able to hit the carrier battle groups, but nice try...

Why is this? I've never seen anything about either the Dong Feng IRBM/ICBMs or the Julang SLBMs that indicates that they have a +/- 10 mile error in their guidance system. Where did you draw this conclusion from?
 
  • #46
Townsend
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danAlwyn said:
By the way, Townsend



Why is this? I've never seen anything about either the Dong Feng IRBM/ICBMs or the Julang SLBMs that indicates that they have a +/- 10 mile error in their guidance system. Where did you draw this conclusion from?


From the fact that a carrier battle group is spread out over more than ten miles for starters, much more. Then the fact that the carrier is the main target makes it easy for the other ships to position themselves in such a way as to be able to intercept incoming missiles that are targeting the carrier.

If the Chinese could launch a torpedo with a nuclear warhead, then I would say US carrier battle groups would be in serious danger.

As it is, the carrier and its ships can move along at a healthy pace, meaning that to hit a carrier the Chinese would have to actually track the ship’s movement with more than just a guidance system. I say that knowing that the nukes have a 5-mile radius and in some cases even more.

Now it is possible that the Chinese could hit maybe one carrier with a massive barrage of attacks that literally covered an inescapable area but I doubt they would take out an entire battle group. Not to mention that the carriers can operate miles out and come in fast, launch an attack, and then retreat all before the Chinese have an opportunity to locate them, track them, prepare and launch a nuclear missile counter attack on the ships.

Also, consider that the US would be watching China very closely and they like to play tricks. They might even put out an old carrier as a decoy so that the Chinese would launch an attack on that ship and thus they would be giving away the position of some of their nuclear stockpile. Five minutes later a trident missile eliminates that site.

Of course, the Chinese might have better missiles then I am giving them credit, so who knows for sure?

This is my opinion and I maybe way off. However, what else have we to go on besides our opinion?

Regards,
 
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  • #47
danAlwyn
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Townsend,

Hmm...hard to debate. Especially since nobody's ever tested this before.

I was thinking of the likely scenario where the Chinese track a local Carrier Battle Group from shore-based installations and then hit it with an IRBM when it's close by. That would give the US five-ten minutes warning (maybe) and would only reveal a fairly substantial launch facility that the US already knows about. Precision tracking might enable them to guide the missile right down on a carrier (within a thousand meters or so). It would be impossible to shoot down, and very difficult to evade. Plus the combination of EM pulse and tidal wave might make the other ships in the group useless if they survive.

In any case, I don't see either side risking this in the short run or in the long run. It's a good way to accidentally annihilate your country.
 
  • #48
MaxS
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Somehow a distance of 10 miles is very negligible when you're talking about a FIREBALL radius of like 15 miles, not counting lethal radiation, heat pulse, over pressure wave

Carrier battle groups would be far from safe.
 
  • #49
Townsend
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MaxS said:
Somehow a distance of 10 miles is very negligible when you're talking about a FIREBALL radius of like 15 miles, not counting lethal radiation, heat pulse, over pressure wave

I guess I was assuming that anything more than a tactical nuke would require a massive missile to carry it. Could a missile that size be capable of maneuvering and tracking a moving target?

Please help me out, because I would like to know if a large ICBM, sized missile is actually able to accomplish such a task as striking offensively against moving targets. I imagine that would make it the single most impressive piece of hardware on the face of the earth.

Regards
 
  • #50
The Smoking Man
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Townsend said:
I guess I was assuming that anything more than a tactical nuke would require a massive missile to carry it. Could a missile that size be capable of maneuvering and tracking a moving target?

Please help me out, because I would like to know if a large ICBM, sized missile is actually able to accomplish such a task as striking offensively against moving targets. I imagine that would make it the single most impressive piece of hardware on the face of the earth.

Regards
I guess you guys are unfamiliar with 'multiple warheads', 'multiple missiles', or the fact that it takes a carrier about 2 miles to really change course.

Missiles are also capable of making adjustments based on course deviation themselves based on self positioning and changing course due to ecoded transmissions.

This is, in fact, the reason the USA was startled by the 1998 test firig by Pyongyang ... It showed evidence of telemetry contrary to the 1993 test.

Now, if Korea has managed to deliver this in 2008 they might not have been overly surprised but, word is, the Korean Missile is based on Chinese configurations. :biggrin:
 
  • #51
Townsend
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But I don't know what the Chinese have to offer and neither do you, my point and your point are merely speculation and nothing more. That being said, I have some comments about your post.

The Smoking Man said:
I guess you guys are unfamiliar with 'multiple warheads', 'multiple missiles', or the fact that it takes a carrier about 2 miles to really change course.

airplane-carrier-turning.jpg


I some how don't think it is going to take that ship 2 miles to turn completely around, let alone change course.

Missiles are also capable of making adjustments based on course deviation themselves based on self positioning and changing course due to ecoded transmissions.

Sure, tomahawk cruise missiles which carry a comparatively small warhead, and many other air to air or surface to air missiles but what I am asking about is something capable of carrying a non-tactical nuclear warhead to a moving target. I find it very hard to believe such a thing exist or will ever. With a mass of about 32000 kg ICBMs do not have a lot of dexterity.

This is, in fact, the reason the USA was startled by the 1998 test firig by Pyongyang ... It showed evidence of telemetry contrary to the 1993 test.

Now, if Korea has managed to deliver this in 2008 they might not have been overly surprised but, word is, the Korean Missile is based on Chinese configurations. :biggrin:

I don't think I understand what you're trying to say here. So what if they have a missile that is capable of changing its course, that is not an internal guidance system capable of tracking a moving target. Not to mention that if the missile depends on another source to give guidance then it would be exceptional easy to defeat. They are called the HARMs, and they have been proven to be very effective against SAMs and your little missile is starting to sound a lot like a glorified surface to surface missile. Not something capable of defeating advanced defensive war system currently employed by US carrier battle groups.

Regards,
 
  • #52
danAlwyn
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The Smoking Man said:
Current guadance telemetry can be achieved by tracking a laser pointing at a target.

So, just what did they put into space? Did the Chinese put a non-lethal laser into orbit for targetting purposes?

I'm not actually sure if that would work. I thought that a laser-guided warhead was guided by the backscatter off the impact point of the laser. That means that the missile has to be approaching the same surface that the laser beam is scattering off of. In order to minimize approach profile though a non-ballistic missile approaches at as close to sea level as they can get it. So unless you're dropping missiles on targets from space (in which case, why do you need a warhead anyway?), the laser targeting system might not work well.

Townsend said:
I don't think I understand what you're trying to say here. So what if they have a missile that is capable of changing its course, that is not an internal guidance system capable of tracking a moving target.

The question is really when is the last time they can update their course correction. Once the missile reaches the top of its trajectory and starts arcing downwards, you might only have a few minutes to react. That's hardly enough time to steer a carrier more than a mile or two from the point it would have been at. You may even have less time. And even a miss of a few miles would probably still destroy any carrier.


Besides, the Chinese have inherited the old Soviet system for sinking a carrier battle group that gets too close to shore. Calculate the total number, n, of surface to air and AR missiles carried by the carrier battle group. Then fire 2n missiles at them. This method has a fairly high chance of working despite all the defenses if a carrier group gets in close.

It's a standoff situation, and one that's going to be hard to resolve without a few test runs.
 
  • #53
The Smoking Man
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danAlwyn said:
I'm not actually sure if that would work. I thought that a laser-guided warhead was guided by the backscatter off the impact point of the laser. That means that the missile has to be approaching the same surface that the laser beam is scattering off of. In order to minimize approach profile though a non-ballistic missile approaches at as close to sea level as they can get it. So unless you're dropping missiles on targets from space (in which case, why do you need a warhead anyway?), the laser targeting system might not work well.



The question is really when is the last time they can update their course correction. Once the missile reaches the top of its trajectory and starts arcing downwards, you might only have a few minutes to react. That's hardly enough time to steer a carrier more than a mile or two from the point it would have been at. You may even have less time. And even a miss of a few miles would probably still destroy any carrier.


Besides, the Chinese have inherited the old Soviet system for sinking a carrier battle group that gets too close to shore. Calculate the total number, n, of surface to air and AR missiles carried by the carrier battle group. Then fire 2n missiles at them. This method has a fairly high chance of working despite all the defenses if a carrier group gets in close.

It's a standoff situation, and one that's going to be hard to resolve without a few test runs.
Thanks Dan.

Great analysis! :approve:
 
  • #54
IMO any nation-state would have to be run by the insane to actually Use a nuke on another nation-state that has nukes. i mean honestly here, if china and USA got into a full blown war it would be WW3 with nukes. i can't imagine a future situation that Only usa and china would be at war and i can't imagine a world after a full scale nuclear conflict. this is nothing new and has been said main times by many people during the cold war

but about china claiming to intend to use a nuke to defend its personnel if they are attacked while in taiwan, i don't see a really big issue here. china doesn't want the usa to interfere and they are saying with words whatever they have to so they don't have to do it with physical weapons later on.

i expect the chinese to make more threats although they wouldn't be crazy enough to carry them out to the full extent but i also expect the threats themselves will be enough to prevent a direct attack. what worrys me is what the usa will try to do besides a direct attack and what kind of response china will give.

for example, what if the usa allows all taiwan government officals political asylum?

what about trade sanctions?

what about a taiwan insurgency supplied by american training, leaked weapons and dollars?

i hope the usa dose not interfere because of freedom and democracy or for the sake of global peace because things could go bad for everyone in this case.
 
  • #55
vanesch
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devil-fire said:
IMO any nation-state would have to be run by the insane to actually Use a nuke on another nation-state that has nukes.

Now that is a worrysome statement :rofl:
 
  • #56
MaxS
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Insanity is a point of view shared by a majority of the United States electorate (assuming the election wasn't rigged).
 
  • #57
MaxS said:
Insanity is a point of view shared by a majority of the United States electorate (assuming the election wasn't rigged).

The sentence has no meaning. It is a poorly structured statement proclaiming that 53,000,000 US citizens are insane and demeans the election process of the US. The poster should be banned from these forums.
 
  • #58
russ_watters
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danAlwyn said:
Besides, the Chinese have inherited the old Soviet system for sinking a carrier battle group that gets too close to shore. Calculate the total number, n, of surface to air and AR missiles carried by the carrier battle group. Then fire 2n missiles at them. This method has a fairly high chance of working despite all the defenses if a carrier group gets in close.
Just out of curiosity, how many missiles do you think that is?

And what about CIWS and other defense systems?

This is an interesting debate, but all of it is predicated on the assumption that China would be able/willing to use a nuclear weapon.
 
  • #59
GENIERE said:
The sentence has no meaning. It is a poorly structured statement proclaiming that 53,000,000 US citizens are insane and demeans the election process of the US. The poster should be banned from these forums.
I believe the Bush administration demeaned the election process in the US with the voting irregularities in Florida leading to Bush's first term in office.
here's one of 43,400 links a quick google turned up on the subject http://www.usccr.gov/pubs/vote2000/report/main.htm
 
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  • #60
MaxS
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GENIERE said:
The sentence has no meaning. It is a poorly structured statement proclaiming that 53,000,000 US citizens are insane and demeans the election process of the US. The poster should be banned from these forums.

I guess you would also support any legislation doing away with the Bill of Rights, specifically the 1st ammendement dealing with freedom of speech. When is your next pro Patriot Act rally?

I have every right to express my disdain, as a human being, and a voting American Citizen, at the election process and its faults.

However if insanity is too strong a word allow me to substitute it for ignorance (Of history, context, geo-political climate, and many other aspects that are necessary for a voter to make a truly informed decision).

Or perhaps I could substitute insanity for non chalance and a lack of compassion (towards human beings living, and those who will some day soon inherit this earth).
 
  • #61
Townsend
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MaxS said:
I guess you would also support any legislation doing away with the Bill of Rights, specifically the 1st ammendement dealing with freedom of speech. When is your next pro Patriot Act rally?
To do this takes an amendment to the constitution...or did I miss class on that day?

I have every right to express my disdain, as a human being, and a voting American Citizen, at the election process and its faults.
Yep, have at it...

However if insanity is too strong a word allow me to substitute it for ignorance (Of history, context, geo-political climate, and many other aspects that are necessary for a voter to make a truly informed decision).

One of the main reasons Madison was so opposed to direct democracy is the fact the the general public is not suited to govern itself directly. I agree with him and so it appears you do too. So what does that or what you just said have to do with anything?

Or perhaps I could substitute insanity for non chalance and a lack of compassion (towards human beings living, and those who will some day soon inherit this earth).

Perhaps, but your word applies to the general public including those who would agree with you and those who would be diametrically opposed to you. In other words, the non chalance would also apply to those who lack a basic understanding of macroeconomics or the concepts of true liberialism (not the contemporary meaning of the word liberialism, the real meaning aka conservative).

P.S. how do this things get so far off-topic? lol...
 
  • #62
MaxS
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Wow keep your semantics to yourself please
:yuck:

AS for being opposed to direct democracy, I suppose I am, in principle. I wish there were some way to make people take and pass at least a history test before being eligible to vote, but there is no ethical way to do so.

What if a man can't read for instance? Would it be a questionable decision to deny him the right to vote? I think it would.

What dismays me the most is the incredibly large number of people who DON'T exercise their right to vote.
 
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  • #63
Townsend
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MaxS said:
What if a man can't read for instance? Would it be a questionable decision to deny him the right to vote? I think it would.

What dismays me the most is the incredibly large number of people who DON'T exercise their right to vote.

Not voting can also be a powerful political statement, in case you didn't realize that.

If you take away the right for the man who cannot read to vote then how is the undereducated man suppose to have equal representation? Sounds to me like you need to read about the Jim Crow laws as they demonstrate why you cannot restrict the right to vote.

Regards
 
  • #64
Townsend
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MaxS said:
Wow keep your semantics to yourself please
:yuck:

Ditto. :wink:
 
  • #65
MaxS
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Townsend said:
Not voting can also be a powerful political statement, in case you didn't realize that.

If you take away the right for the man who cannot read to vote then how is the undereducated man suppose to have equal representation? Sounds to me like you need to read about the Jim Crow laws as they demonstrate why you cannot restrict the right to vote.

Regards

OK I won't make a lame jest about reading comprehension this time since I didnt word my statement very clearly, but suffice to say you basically just restated what I was trying to say when you said "how is the undereducated man suppose to have equal representation?" (we're in agreement)

I realize that with holding one's vote can be a political statement but it is also a forfeiture of the few small powers allowed to us as citizens to have a say in the government.
 
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  • #66
danAlwyn
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russ_watters said:
Just out of curiosity, how many missiles do you think that is?

And what about CIWS and other defense systems?

Oh, I admit it's a hell of a lot. The US Navy builds their ships well, and they've been preparing for just such an assault for years. But as the components for guided missiles become cheaper and more common, they might no longer have the advantage.

For instance, the US Navy describes a typical carrier task force http://www.navy.mil/navydata/ships/carriers/powerhouse/cvbg.html They have little reason to lie on their own site, so we can take a Carrier Strike Group (CSG) as having one Ticonderoga class cruiser, and a pair of Arleigh Burke's as their main air-defense component. According to Global Security (who is usually accurate), the upgraded Ticonderoga's carry a pair of Mk-41 Vertical Launch Arrays, with a total of 127 cells. A Flight IIA Arleigh Burke carries a similar system, albiet one with only 96 launch cells. Assuming that all of them are carrying SM/2 Block IV Standards (instead of possibly being loaded with Vertical Launch ASROCs or Tomahawks), that's a formidable component of 319 missiles. The carrier itself has as many as four launchers for Sea Sparrow missiles. Now I assume a carrier can carry a great big heap of those things, so you can expect salvos at a regular interval, with an engagement range of slightly over thirty nautical miles. A Chinese missile, like the C-802 is reported to travel about Mach 0.9, so thirty nautical miles is about three minutes. If you fire a salvo every ten seconds (I have no idea how accurate that is), you add 72 more missiles to the bargain. So that's 391 missiles total that a CSG carries.

China's current aim seems to be to have 150 missile boats in service by about 2015 (once again from Global Security-although the accuracy is somewhat more in doubt). So far each of their missile boats carries four launchers. If this trend continues, that small fleet will be able to launch a saturation attack, if they get close enough. This is why they built the things, they have no legs, they're not very seaworthy, but they're cheap and they can built a hell of a lot of them, compared to how fast we build carriers. That's why there have been people arguing against carriers in recent years.

Of course, if they manage to arm their old J-7/J-8 aircraft with Air-to-Surface missiles, the count gets higher, as they have over a thousand of these old, expendable aircraft. They'd pay a high price, but they might consider it worth it (especially if nobody is sure how high a price they'd pay). China has a lot of military equipment though, and they can be expected to be very methodical about deploying it.

Of course if missile boats (and assorted patrol boats and destroyers I haven't bothered to count) do launch a 600 missile attack on a carrier task force, the result could be devastating. Even if the US scores 100% kills, 200 missiles zeroing in on a task force would be disasterous. Even the formidable CIWS, operating in pairs, could probably be saturated by as few as fifteen missiles approaching the carrier from multiple directions. Not to mention that they would probably run out of ammunition against a larger attack.

Now this is extremely unlikely, since the US has more carriers, and at this point the Chinese would pay a large price. But if an American carrier group gets careless, and the Chinese are feeling lucky, when war breaks out they might be able to launch a saturation attack of sorts.


Sorry to hijack the thread for this long and mostly meaningless discourse.

Edit: I should add that none of those missiles are known to have a nuclear payload. But at that concentration, none of them really need a nuclear payload.
 
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  • #67
Townsend
221
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danAlwyn said:
Sorry to hijack the thread for this long and mostly meaningless discourse.


No need to apologize, this is an interesting and worthy discussion. It seems the original point has failed to engender much interest anyways.

Regards,
 
  • #68
vanesch said:
Now that is a worrysome statement :rofl:

True. :approve: How many nukes does he (Chirac) have? :devil:

Should the Brits be concerned even if they force themselves to eat French food? :cry:

Are the 2012 Olympics imperiled? :grumpy:

Will the Chunnel be closed? :eek:

Will there be a Dover invasion? :frown:

Does France have an Armada? :confused:

Should I continue to sell Euros? :yuck:
 
  • #69
russ_watters
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A good analysis dan, but I have three issues with it: one, it fails to account for the aircraft on the carrier. Two (related to one), it assumes several hundred gunboats and planes could get themselves into a position to launch such an attack. And three, it assumes strategic as well as tactical surprise - ie, if tensions were higher, we'd certainly have beefier task forces than that, probably more than one, and a signficant number of other ships not necessarily assigned to the carrier task force.
 
  • #70
Townsend said:
One of the main reasons Madison was so opposed to direct democracy is the fact the the general public is not suited to govern itself directly.
To the extent that the general public is not truly informed of the real facts, it is not suited to govern itself directly. This situation could be redressed by ensuring that corporate vested interests who withhold/distort information to suit their own purposes do not control the mass media - then the 'Fourth Estate' could perform its democratic functions, as outlined at Allan Gregg's April 2 2001 talk at the Second Annual Kesterton Lecture of the School of Journalism and Communication (Carleton University, Ottawa).
In sum, Canadians identify four distinct roles and benefits that individuals and society share as a result of a free and functioning press. These are:

1) A utilitarian purpose - the press satisfies intellectual curiosity and provides knowledge that can be capitalized for practical purposes.

2) The watchdog function - journalists keep government and other powerful bodies in check and help "protect me in a dangerous world."

3) A community creator - news and current affairs reporting encourages empathy and builds a common ground on which to build communities.

4) The citizen function - the media helps one form opinions on important issues and provides the raw material for social interaction.

Extract from http://www.carleton.ca/jmc/newsevents/kesterton/gregg.html [Broken]

But then, while those who do govern may be better informed than the 'ignorant masses' (a term I truly resent and would not choose to use myself), they are also following specific agendas, and these have nothing to do with the 'general good' but rather protect and further the interests of the powerful (the rich). This is just what James Madison intended, of course.
 
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