Wichita Military Affairs
June 8, 2012
Defense Secretary Leon Panetta outlined a plan to transfer the majority of U.S. warships to the Asia Pacific region and establish bases of operation in Vietnam, the Philippines and elsewhere by the end of the decade as part of the Obama administration's so called "strategic re-balance" is clearly a move to target China militarily.
Panetta told a packed conference of defense officials in Singapore on Saturday that the U.S. Navy would reposition its naval forces so that 60 percent of its battleships would be in the Pacific by 2020, up from the 50 percent level now.
The move comes as tensions and fears grow over the US alarming moves to threaten Iran and Syria with pre-emptive military intervention and regime change - if it doesn’t get its way.
“It move represents a significant build up of military forces which increases the chance of war with China”, said one military expert, who declined to be named in this report because of his affiliation with the Pentagon. He is not alone in his assessment.
CHINA IS US NUMBER ONE TARGET
US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced in no uncertain terms in Singapore last weekend the size and scope of the buildup to a room full of shocked officials.
According to reports the by 2020 the greater part of American naval forces—including some “six aircraft carrier battle groups as well as a majority of the navy’s cruisers, destroyers, Littoral Combat ships and submarines” —will all be stationed in the Asia-Pacific region.
Panetta also made it very clear that the US is seeking total dominance in the region. He reiterated the Pentagon intends to maintain its “technological edge” and ability to “rapidly project military power” through the development of such things as the “an advanced fifth-generation fighter, an enhanced Virginia-class submarine, new electronic warfare and communications capabilities and improved precision weapons” (see article: Military build-up in Indo-Pacific region: US “pivot” to Asia threatens war with China )
The US is also investing in “new refueling tankers, a new bomber and advanced maritime patrol and anti-submarine warfare aircraft” to boost the capacity of US forces “to operate over the Pacific’s vast distances”, according to the same article.
Panetta denied reports that this huge military buildup of US military forces in Asia was “some kind of challenge to China.” But as Peter Symonds made clear in his article “there is no other plausible explanation.” Noting that according to the Pentagon’s own strategic documents, including its annual report on the Chinese military, all identify China as the US’s number one target.”
“As part of the Air-Sea Battle concept,” reports Military.com, the U.S. is looking “to disperse its air forces stationed at its handful of major bases in the western Pacific in the event of a major conflict with China” (see article: US Refurbishing Bases in Pacific For Possible Conflict With China ).
“I think there can be no doubt about US military intentions in the regions”, said one recently retired US military officer in Wichita, Kansas, speaking on the condition of anonymity out of expressed fear of retaliation by the Defense Department of Pentagon for speaking out on such matters publically. “I also worry about the huge costs of doing this at a time when we are in deficit situation for generations to come. My grandchildren are already saddled with the debt of our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan which was not paid for, by the way. All that money was borrowed from the Chinese. Oddly enough the Chinese will be the ones funding all this the pivot of forces. It will be interesting to see if they will continue to fund us seeing how we are seeking to literally surround their country with military bases…” he said.
Besides questions arising about how we are going to be able to afford this huge expansion of US military forces - the Chinese are reportedly very upset by all this (see article: China Slams U.S. Plan to Shift Naval Fleet to the Pacific ).
This also caused one Chinese general to issue some veiled threats recently (see article: Chinese General warns US “we will not attack - unless we are attacked”! ).
Clearly the US is ill advised to adopt such a strategy as to make an enemy out of its largest trading partner.