Advanced missile poses substantial new threat for U.S. Navy
With tensions already rising due to the Chinese navy becoming more aggressive in asserting its territorial claims in the South China Sea, the U.S. Navy seems to have yet another reason to be deeply concerned.
After years of conjecture, details have begun to emerge of a “kill weapon” developed by the Chinese to target and destroy U.S. aircraft carriers.
First posted on a Chinese blog viewed as credible by military analysts and then translated by the naval affairs blog Information Dissemination, a recent report provides a description of an anti-ship ballistic missile (ASBM) that can strike carriers and other U.S. vessels at a range of 2000km.
The range of the modified Dong Feng 21 missile is significant in that it covers the areas that are likely hot zones for future confrontations between U.S. and Chinese surface forces.
The size of the missile enables it to carry a warhead big enough to inflict significant damage on a large vessel, providing the Chinese the capability of destroying a U.S. supercarrier in one strike.
Because the missile employs a complex guidance system, low radar signature and a maneuverability that makes its flight path unpredictable, the odds that it can evade tracking systems to reach its target are increased. It is estimated that the missile can travel at mach 10 and reach its maximum range of 2000km in less than 12 minutes.
Supporting the missile is a network of satellites, radar and unmanned aerial vehicles that can locate U.S. ships and then guide the weapon, enabling it to hit moving targets.
The ASBM is said to be a modified DF-21
While the ASBM has been a topic of discussion within national defense circles for quite some time, the fact that information is now coming from Chinese sources indicates that the weapon system is operational. The Chinese rarely mention weapons projects unless they are well beyond the test stages.
If operational as is believed, the system marks the first time a ballistic missile has been successfully developed to attack vessels at sea. Ships currently have no defense against a ballistic missile attack.
Along with the Chinese naval build-up, U.S. Navy officials appear to view the development of the anti-ship ballistic missile as a tangible threat.
After spending the last decade placing an emphasis on building a fleet that could operate in shallow waters near coastlines, the U.S. Navy seems to have quickly changed its strategy over the past several months to focus on improving the capabilities of its deep sea fleet and developing anti-ballistic defenses.
“The Navy’s reaction is telling, because it essentially equals a radical change in direction based on information that has created a panic inside the bubble. For a major military service to panic due to a new weapon system, clearly a mission kill weapon system, either suggests the threat is legitimate or the leadership of the Navy is legitimately unqualified. There really aren’t many gray spaces in evaluating the reaction by the Navyâ€¦the data tends to support the legitimacy of the threat.”
In recent years, China has been expanding its navy to presumably better exert itself in disputed maritime regions. A recent show of strength in early March led to a confrontation with an unarmed U.S. ship in international waters.
”Regardless of the timing or method of the release of these remarks, the message from the Democratic candidate for President could not be clearer: the Obama-Biden ticket spells disaster for America’s coal industry and the tens of thousands of Americans who work in it.”
”These undisputed, audio-taped remarks, which include comments from Senator Obama like ‘I haven’t been some coal booster’ and ‘if they want to build [coal plants], they can, but it will bankrupt them’ are extraordinarily misguided.”Ã‚ It’s evident that this campaign has been pandering in states like Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia, Indiana and Pennsylvania to attempt to generate votes from coal supporters, while keeping his true agenda hidden from the state’s voters.
”Senator Obama has revealed himself to be nothing more than a short- sighted, inexperienced politician willing to say anything to get a vote. But today, the nation’s coal industry and those who support it have a better understanding of his true mission, to ‘bankrupt’ our industry, put tens of thousands out of work and cause unprecedented increases in electricity prices.”
â€œIf somebody wants to build a coal power plant they can, itâ€™s just that it will bankrupt them because they are going to be charged a huge sum for all that greenhouse gas thatâ€™s being emitted,â€ Barack Obama said to the San Francisco Chronicle in January.
So the real question is, why did theSan Francisco Chronicle sit on thisuntil recently. They may have put it online, but this should have been front page material early in the primary, not today. Instead they put it there and didnâ€™tÃ‚ tell anyone about it. Ã‚ If McCain had said anything like this the elite media would have had a field day with it. This little tactic of posting explosive or important information with as little notice as posible is called ”burying the lead”. It is one of the most often used forms of media bias.
You know, when I was asked earlier about the issue of coal, uh, you know â€” Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily skyrocket. Even regardless of what I say about whether coal is good or bad. Because Iâ€™m capping greenhouse gases, coal power plants, you know, natural gas, you name it â€” whatever the plants were, whatever the industry was, uh, they would have to retrofit their operations. That will cost money. They will pass that money on to consumers.
Both Barack Obama and Joe Biden have views about coal which should concern all Americans but which represent very substantial danger to several states, at least a few of which (Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Colorado) are critical in this weekâ€™s election.
Obamaâ€™s view represents a serious threat and one which should cause all but the most partisan Democrats to reconsider any thought they might have had for voting for a president who clearly opposes capitalism and now clearly opposes affordable electricity.
Coloradoâ€™s coal industry directly employs nearly 2,300 people at an average salary and benefits package of over $100,000, for total industry payroll and benefits of $228 million within the state. Coloradoâ€™s current coal industry employment is its highest in two decades, with the state having one of the countryâ€™s most efficient production rates.
The industry paid nearly $140 million more in taxes and royalties in 2007, for a total contribution to the coffers of citizens and government of over $356,000,000. The CMA notes that â€œmore than half of Coloradoâ€™s share of federal mining royalties is paid to the state school fund and local school districts.â€
And now we hear Barack Obama saying â€œIf someone wants to build a coal-fired plant they can. Itâ€™s just that it will bankrupt them because they are going to be charged a huge sum for that greenhouse gas thatâ€™s being emitted.â€
Does he not realize that fully half of the nationâ€™s electric power generation comes from coal-fired plants?
Share of Electric Power Sector Net Generation by Energy Source, 2005 vs. 2006?(Percent):
Source: Energy Information Administration, Form EIA-906, “Power Plant Report.”
Does he not realize that the industry directlyemploys over 80,000 people in America, not to mention the massive indirect employment created for people who build and sell mining equipment or who own business in towns which are supported by spending from mine employees?
But this isnâ€™t just a big issue for Colorado. Itâ€™s also a big issue for other major coal-producing states, at least two of which, Ohio and Pennsylvania, may play a crucial role in Tuesdayâ€™s election.
Barack and Obama dislike any source of energy which actually produces an important quantity of power for Americans. They hate oil, coal, and nuclear power, and are ambivalent at best about natural gas. What do they like? Wind farms and solar power which are pleasant â€œgreenâ€ things to think about but which are far from being able to produce less than 1% of the nationâ€™s energy combined and much of that in relatively inefficient small generation rather than the huge generating potential of traditionally-powered electrical plants.
The Department of Energy says that â€œcoal-fired plants typically are more economical, and they account for 40 percent of (projected) total capacity additions from 2006 to 2030.â€ In other words, coal is not just cheaper now, it is expected to remain the most economical source of electric power for the nation for a generation or more and therefore shows nearly as large a projected gain in percentage terms as renewables and a massive gain in absolute terms compared to any other source in the DOEâ€™s projected energy generation in 2030 as compared to 2006.
Indeed, even with all the hype about renewables changing the world, they are still expected to produce less power â€“ with all renewable forms, including hydroelectric, combined â€“ than either nuclear or natural gas powered electric plants generate today. And each of those is far less than half of the power generated by coal. If you take out conventional hydropower from the renewables category (since almost all the growth in the category is outside hydro), the power generated by the combination of wind, solar, biomass, and geothermal power generating systems will, in 2030, represent barely half of what either nuclear or natural gas generate today, and not even 1/8th of what coal will generate for the nation in 2030.
Unless Obama and Biden get their way, in which case I submit it is not possible for renewables to make up for the loss in power generation which the Democratsâ€™ anti-energy platform, in service of their radical environmentalist donors, will cause.
With the recent economic crisis, people have temporarily forgotten about the recent spike in energy prices and what can happen if we do not ensure the most flexibility possible and most domestic production possible to generate Americaâ€™s energy needs.
It is an interesting coincidence that Obamaâ€™s statement about wanting to bankrupt coal-fired power plants represents a grave threat to at least three of the most important states in this weekâ€™s election. But it represents more than that: It represents a threat to anyone, anywhere in America, who uses electricity. If you happen to fall into that category, Obama/Biden represent an almost certain increase in your cost of living, your cost of heating, of driving, of cooking, of absolutely anything that you canâ€™t power by burning your own treesâ€¦and Iâ€™m sure theyâ€™ll try to stop that too.
China space mission article hits Web before launch
BEIJING – A news story describing a successful launch of China’s long-awaited space mission and including detailed dialogue between astronauts launched on the Internet Thursday, hours before the rocket had even left the ground.
The country’s official news agency Xinhua posted the article on its Web site Thursday, and remained there for much of the day before it was taken down.
A staffer from the Xinhuanet.com Web site who answered the phone Thursday said the posting of the article was a "technical error" by a technician. The staffer refused to give his name as is common among Chinese officials.
The Shenzhou 7 mission, which will feature China’s first-ever spacewalk, is set to launch Thursday from Jiuquan in northwestern China between 9:07 a.m. EDT and 10:27 p.m. EDT.
The arcticle, dated two days from now on Sept. 27, vividly described the rocket in flight, complete with a sharply detailed dialogue between the three astronauts.
Excerpts are below:
"After this order, signal lights all were switched on, various data show up on rows of screens, hundreds of technicians staring at the screens, without missing any slightest changes …
‘One minute to go!’
‘Changjiang No.1 found the target!’…
"The firm voice of the controller broke the silence of the whole ship. Now, the target is captured 12 seconds ahead of the predicted time …
‘The air pressure in the cabin is normal!’
"Ten minutes later, the ship disappears below the horizon. Warm clapping and excited cheering breaks the night sky, echoing across the silent Pacific Ocean."