China Is Building Bases With Artillery, Bombers, and Helicopter Pads

The Chinese military appears to have started building infrastructure as they continue to beef up forces at Ladakh that led to a deadly clash in June 2020, after analysis of satellite imagery along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) came to light this week.

Besides the infrastructure improvements that would improve the bases along the border, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has also deployed long-range bombers in the region as a warning to India. China has been increasingly aggressive in asserting its presence around the globe, not only with India but in the South China Sea, against Taiwan and opening a base on the west coast of Africa, and now looking for an Atlantic base in Africa as well. These bases would serve as sustainment hubs for its navy and vastly increase its operating range in waters it has not patrolled previously. 

This in turn has prompted India to also improve it’s own military positions along the border region knowns as the Line of Actual Control  or LAC.

Satellite photo of Chinese expansion of the border region with India. Photo by Chris Biggers HawkEye 360

China’s build-up has been rapid and planned in advance

Chris Biggers is the director of mission applications at the RF geospatial intelligence firm HawkEye 360. He currently writes for Janes Defense. He was previously Defense & Intelligence Applications Lead for Planet Labs and an Intelligence Officer with the US National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency. He was interviewed by the India Cable news about the interpretation of the satellite photos of the buildup of Chinese forces.