The Buzz

Nuclear Weapons: The Most Overrated Weapon of War?

But since World War II, the United States has eschewed the use of nuclear weapons, even against capable non-nuclear opponents.  Because of the deep political complexity associated with their employment, the weapons simply have too little battlefield and strategic impact for the US to seriously entertain their use.

Are America and China Destined for War?

In his recent book The Improbable War, professor Christopher Coker explains that it is “of vital importance that the possibility of a conflict between China and the United States continues to be discussed.” Coker’s rationale for this is simple: “If the United States and China continue to convince themselves that war is too ‘improbable’ to take seriously, it is not they but the rest of the world that may ultimately pay the price.”

The U.S. Military's Greatest Enemy Isn't Russia or China

A wise man once pointed out that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view. Relative to the 1970s and 1980s, the United States is almost incomparably powerful and secure, enjoying presumptive military advantage over any opponent or plausible coalition of opponents. We sometimes forget, for example, that there is some history to the idea of Russian troops freely operating in Ukraine.

Why China Is Slashing the Size of Its Army

China is radically restructuring its People’s Liberation Army (PLA) by cutting the number of Corps level commands by a quarter.

The move—which seems to primarily impact the PLA’s ground forces—is designed to transform the Chinese military into a much more agile force that can cope with the demands of modern warfare. However, the cuts are in part to deal with corruption within the ranks of the Chinese Communist Party and the PLA.

Is Russia Getting Ready to Build a Massive Nuclear-Powered Aircraft Carrier?

Russia’s Krylov State Research Center is lobbying the Kremlin hard to build a new aircraft carrier called the Project 23000E Storm.

If built, the massive vessel would be comparable in size and capability to one of the U.S. Navy’s Nimitz or Ford-class super carriers. The Russian Ministry of Defense  (MOD) has no real interest in the project; nonetheless Krylov is attempting to convince a reluctant Russian Navy to buy one of the massive vessels. Moreover, the company hopes to convince a foreign customer—most probably India—to buy such a ship.

Littoral Combat Ship – Inheritor of the U.S. Navy's Destroyer Legacy

The destroyer was borne out of a singular need: counter the asymmetrical threat posed to the ships of the line by the motor torpedo and the agile boats craft that launched them.  The utility of the destroyer was quickly recognized. Once in service, commanders began retrofitting these fast, lightly armored ships to address emergent missions. This legacy of flexibility, focus, and countering the asymmetrical threat are the legacy of destroyers. This is the legacy inherited by the crews of the Littoral Combat Ships (LCS), and a legacy, despite challenges, the U.S.

The Shocking Way a War Between China and America Could Begin

In the air, the American and Japanese pilots reigned supreme. Chinese fighters proved no match for American fifth generation F-22 and F-35 fighters. Below the seas, the Los Angeles-class submarines overwhelmed the Chinese navy. Tomahawk missiles, fired from the USS Ronald Reagan, a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier, wrecked and ruined virtually all Chinese military airfields in the theater of conflict.

Why a War Between China and Japan Would Be Sheer Chaos

A fight over seemingly minor stakes, then, could mushroom into a major conflagration arraying China against the US-Japan alliance. How much passion would an East China Sea imbroglio rouse among the combatants? China and Japan would be all in. Disputes involving sovereignty -- particularly territory and resources -- tend to drive the perceived value of the political object through the roof. Tokyo and Beijing, moreover, are acutely conscious that the post-1895 status quo is in play.

Why No Nation Wants to Go to War Against America's Military in a Fair Fight

The ability of the United States to completely destroy a more or less modern Iraqi military establishment remains a remarkable achievement. Only a few doubted at the time that the United States Army, supported by airpower and by a huge international coalition, could prevail over the Iraqis. The extent of the victory, and its relative bloodlessness on the American side, surprised almost everyone.

U.S. Navy Preps for Arctic Combat Against Russia

Navy scientists have had success in the Arctic using an underwater drone called the Seaglider, a 110-pound, 2.8-meter autonomous underwater robot able to lower acoustic sensors to depths of 1,000 meters. The Seaglider, originally developed by the ONR for open ocean data collection, can be used to gather information beneath the surface of the ice, Jeffries explained.

By the end of the summer in 2014, the science team had deployed over 100 robotic platforms in the ice and the ocean, Jeffries explained.

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