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Andrew S. Erickson China's rapid development is reshaping the world in all dimensions. Chinese language open sources offer insights into these critical trends. While such materials are increasing constantly in number, diversity, and sophistication, only a fraction is available in English. The analyses available here, many based on sources not previously considered outside China, are designed to help bridge that gap--and thereby increase understanding of the most dynamic great power in the international system today.

05 February 2008

Norman Polmar on CMSI’s China Sea Mine Research

Norman Polmar, “Is There a Mine Threat?” U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings 134.2 (February 2008): 88-89.
If Chinese offensive mining is a concern, the U.S. Navy isn’t saying much about it. … Similarly, numerous articles in Proceedings, the Naval War College Review, and other professional publications address the Chinese submarine threat, but China’s use of mines is rarely mentioned. … The […]

01 February 2008

Chinese Evaluations of the U.S. Navy Submarine Force

Andrew Erickson, Gabriel Collins, Lyle Goldstein, and William Murray, “Chinese Evaluations of the U.S. Navy Submarine Force,” Naval War College Review 61.1 (Winter 2008): 68-86.
The U.S. Navy submarine force has set the standard in undersea warfare for at least half a century. America’s submarines made a vital contribution to victory in the Second World War, and […]

01 February 2008

Book Review: The Impact of Chinese Naval Modernization and the Future of the United States Navy

Andrew S. Erickson, review of Ronald O’Rourke, The Impact of Chinese Naval Modernization and the Future of the United States Navy (New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc., 2006), Naval War College Review 61.1 (Winter 2008): 130-31.
Well written, succinct, and timely, this balanced assessment of Chinese naval weaknesses and strengths offers specific technological development and procurement alternatives to […]

30 January 2008

China’s ‘String of Pearls’ in the Indian Ocean and Its Security Implications

Gurpreet S. Khurana, “China’s ‘String of Pearls’ in the Indian Ocean and Its Security Implications,” Strategic Analysis, Vol. 32, No. 1(January 2008), pp. 1-39.
China’s efforts to build ‘nodes’ of influence in the Indian Ocean Region have been increasingly discernible in recent years. This endeavour, many argue, is driven by Beijing’s military-strategic ends. However, such an […]

10 January 2008

China’s Boomers: Implications if China’s Deterrent Goes to Sea

Andrew S. Erickson, “China’s Boomers: Implications if China’s Deterrent Goes to Sea,” presented at panel discussion, New America Foundation, Washington, DC, 9 January 2008.
The public revelation that China has constructed two or more new ballistic missile submarines raises a number of strategic, operational and bureaucratic questions about the future of nuclear arsenals held by China […]

09 January 2008

It’s Always Nice to Get the Chinese Perspective

“It’s Always Nice to Get the Chinese Perspective,” Information Dissemination, 8 January 2008.
Last Thursday we highlighted the Winter 2008 Review at the Naval War College that has an excellent essay titled Chinese Evaluations of the US Navy Submarine Force. We found this essay to be excellent, well cited, indeed well put together and one of […]

04 January 2008

Reading Bliss for Observers of Submarines and China

“Reading Bliss for Observers of Submarines and China,” Information Dissemination, 3 January 2008.
… Inside Winter 2008 you will find reading bliss for submarine observers like us. If you want to get a head start, check it out, because we intend to spend extra time blogging about the essay “Chinese Evaluations of the US Navy Submarine […]

27 December 2007

The International Politics of Space

Michael Sheehan, The International Politics of Space (New York: Routledge, 27 December 2007).
The year 2007 saw the fiftieth anniversary of the Space Age, which began with the launching of Sputnik by the Soviet Union in October 1957. Space is crucial to the politics of the postmodern world. It has seen competition and cooperation in the past […]

01 December 2007

Can China Become a Maritime Power?

Andrew S. Erickson, “Can China Become a Maritime Power?” in Toshi Yoshihara and James Holmes, eds., Asia Looks Seaward: Power and Maritime Strategy (Westport, CT: Praeger Security International, 2008), 70-110.
Despite possessing a coastline some 7,830 nautical miles long and some 3,400 offshore islands, China has pursued maritime development in an atmosphere of considerable uncertainty. The […]

09 November 2007

As Military Balks, Chinese Public Pushes for Aircraft Carriers

Tim Johnson, “As Military Balks, Chinese Public Pushes for Aircraft Carriers,” McClatchy Newspapers, 8 November 2007.
…China remains the only major global power without aircraft carriers in its fleet. For years, military leaders have weighed the pride that such vessels would bring the nation with the costs and complexity of operating the giant ships, continually postponing […]

01 November 2007

Beijing’s Energy Security Strategy: The Significance of a Chinese State-Owned Tanker Fleet

Andrew S. Erickson and Gabriel B. Collins, “Beijing’s Energy Security Strategy: The Significance of a Chinese State-Owned Tanker Fleet,” Foreign Policy Research Institute, Orbis 51.4 (Fall 2007): 665-84.
Chinese shipping firms are aggressively expanding their oil tanker fleets. Although China’s state energy firms support national energy security goals in their rhetoric, and China’s state shipbuilders are striving to […]

01 October 2007

A Coming Confrontation With the U.S. Over Taiwan?

Andrew S. Erickson, “A Coming Confrontation With the U.S. Over Taiwan?” review of John Wilson Lewis and Xue Litai, Imagined Enemies: China Prepares for Uncertain War (Palo Alto, CA: Stanford University Press, 2006), Naval War College Review 60.4 (Autumn 2007): 139-40.
This sophisticated Chinese-language research, based on numerous original sources and interviews, completes Lewis and Xue’s authoritative […]

01 October 2007

New U.S. Maritime Strategy: Initial Chinese Responses

Andrew S. Erickson, “New U.S. Maritime Strategy: Initial Chinese Responses,” China Security, Vol. 3, No. 4 (Autumn 2007), pp. 40-61.
The United States unquestionably remains the country with the largest stake in the security of the oceans. It must safeguard its 8.8 million square kilometers of exclusive economic zone (EEZ) – more than any other nation […]

15 September 2007

Why Taiwan? Geostrategic Rationales for China’s Territorial Integrity

Alan Wachman, Why Taiwan? Geostrategic Rationales for China’s Territorial Integrity (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 15 September 2007).
Why has the PRC been so determined that Taiwan be part of China? Why, since the 1990s, has Beijing been feverishly developing means to prevail in combat with the U.S. over Taiwan’s status? Why is Taiwan worth fighting […]

01 September 2007

China’s Maritime Evolution: Military and Commercial Factors

Andrew S. Erickson and Gabriel Collins, “China’s Maritime Evolution: Military and Commercial Factors,” Pacific Focus 22.2 (Fall 2007): 47-75.

Required reading for the Naval War College Joint Military Operations Department’s Joint Land, Air, and Sea Simulation (JLASS) Fall Elective (FE) 535A.

China is rapidly emerging as a maritime power, with global commercial and regional military influence. Historically preoccupied […]

10 August 2007

China: A New Maritime Partner?

Lyle J. Goldstein, “China: A New Maritime Partner?,” U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, Vol. 133, No. 8 (August 2007).
The U.S. Coast Guard is opening the door to a cooperative relationship with China.
China’s maritime development is gathering steam. It is challenging South Korea and Japan for dominance of the global shipbuilding market. More than 1,700 ships carry […]

01 August 2007

Assessing the Threat: The Chinese Military and Taiwan’s Security

Roy D. Kamphausen and Justin Liang, “PLA Power Projection: Current Realities and Emerging Trends,” pp. 111-52, chapter 5 in Michael D. Swaine, Andrew N. D. Yang, and Evan S. Medeiros, with Oriana Skylar Mastro, Assessing the Threat: The Chinese Military and Taiwan’s Security (Washington, DC: Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1 August 2007).
Since at least […]

01 August 2007

Tanking Up: The Commercial and Strategic Significance of China’s Growing Tanker Fleet

Gabriel B. Collins and Andrew S. Erickson, “Tanking Up: The Commercial and Strategic Significance of China’s Growing Tanker Fleet,” Geopolitics of Energy 29.8 (August 2007): 2-11.
This article analyzes China’s plans to control the entire oil supply chain in order to guarantee its oil supply during times of crisis and probes the underlining factors that shape China’s […]

01 July 2007

An Accessible Window into Chinese Military Thought: The Science of Military Strategy

Andrew S. Erickson, “An Accessible Window into Chinese Military Thought,” review of Peng Guangqian and Yao Youzhi, eds., The Science of Military Strategy (Beijing: Military Science Press, 2005), Naval War College Review 60.3 (Summer 2007): 133-34.
Since this book has deliberately been made accessible to an overseas audience, it is important to reflect on what message its English-language […]