Who would have ever guessed it? China’s navy now has significant advantages over the US Navy, including a bigger fleet and greater shipbuilding capacity. Did this information come from some Chinese propaganda information leaflet? Not at all; it came directly from the acting Secretary of the Navy, speaking at the National Press Club in Washington DC, recently.
The head of the Navy also said that China “consistently attempts to violate the maritime sovereignty and economic well-being of other nations, including our allies in the South China Sea and elsewhere.” At least this is being acknowledged.
“They got a larger fleet now, so they’re deploying that fleet globally,” he said.
The Secretary informed us that China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy could have up to 400 ships in their fleet in coming years. They now have about 340.
On the American side, we have fewer than 300 ships, and that number is shrinking as older ships are retired. The Pentagon’s goal for the Navy is to field 350 manned ships by 2045.
Anyway you slice it, that has us playing catchup for decades to come as China becomes increasingly more aggressive in global affairs.
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