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Inst

Senior Member
I see it as unlikely for China to drastically increase official military spending as a percentage of gdp beyond 2% for the foreseeable future and without a major war. This is because i think China will still follow the policy of making fast iterations to progress technologically rather than focus on building up a large amount of military assets.
Doesn't matter, there's massive political upheaval right now. We are potentially foreseeing the end of American power, and Trump's line has been to try to take down China to preserve the American world system when the Europeans are already deserting because of his unilateralism and fascism.

Note that this year, the Chinese cut all government budgets except for the military one, expanding military funding by 6%, which when GDP growth and inflation are factored in, exceed GDP growth parity.

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The main problem with Chinese military spending boosts right now, though, is that the tech isn't ready. I wouldn't consider the J-20 adequate for its role; i.e, it'd need to be able to reliably 2:1 F-35s when the stealth paradigm seems to favor IR stealth and large weapons payloads, something the F-35 has and the J-20 apparently lacks.

In most other technologies, China would have a half generation gap between itself and the United States, and the US is beginning to drive up its military R&D complex with powerful next / next-half generation equipment.

The implication is that if China were to attempt to seek military parity with the United States, even in East Asia, it would have to spend a lot more since it'd have to buy either larger platforms (J-20 vs F-35), buy equipment in more numerous set-ups (no real example), or seek asymmetric technological advantages (Chinese anti-ship ballistic missiles).

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But the question is still, does China still have a choice as to whether to focus on economy and technological development, or is it now or never? In the latter case, even if China has to spend more to obtain or maintain military parity with the United States, it must act just to maintain its strategic position.
 

tamsen_ikard

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Relevant quote:

Australian military analyst Peter Layton of the Griffith Asia Institute said the F-16 sale could actually help stabilize the Taiwan situation, at least from a military standpoint.
"The sale will act to broadly maintain the air combat balance" between Taiwanese (ROCAF) and Chinese (PLAAF) air forces, Layton said.
"The PLAAF has significantly more air combat aircraft than the ROCAF, but in a conflict the ROCAF will be defending and the PLAAF attacking. The difference in roles and that the ROCAF will be operating over its own airfields compensates for the difference in numbers," he said.
"The additional F-16s will simply keep the balance into the early 2030s," Layton said.


I want some honest assessment from PLA watchers. How delusional/realistic is this "expert"? I thought PLA has about 1400 4th Gen jets with many of them 4.5 gen such as J-10B, C and J-16, Su-35. Taiwan has about 100+ f-16 right now. If you ignore PLA's missiles and bombers and other multipliers, How much does this sale change the "balance"?
 
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I want some honest assessment from PLA watchers. How delusional/realistic is this "expert"? I thought PLA has about 1400 4th Gen jets with many of them 4.5 gen such as J-10B, C and J-16, Su-35. Taiwan has about 100+ f-16 right now. How much does this sale change the "balance"?
It doesn't. All of the ROC's airbases are gone in the first minutes of conflict. They want to use highways to put some scattered jets up but they're be flying around like headless flies with no command and no AWAC. The is the US fleecing the ROC for "protection money" without giving any protection.
 

muddie

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I want some honest assessment from PLA watchers. How delusional/realistic is this "expert"? I thought PLA has about 1400 4th Gen jets with many of them 4.5 gen such as J-10B, C and J-16, Su-35. Taiwan has about 100+ f-16 right now. If you ignore PLA's missiles and bombers and other multipliers, How much does this sale change the "balance"?
The biggest problem with Taiwan from a defense perspective is that the island is simply to small and too close to China. The number of fighter jets, especially a few dozen F-16s do not change anything from a military perspective. Sale of U.S. military equipment to Taiwan is more of symbolic rather than to actually deter any Chinese military action.

If you look at the map of Taiwan, all of their high valued targets (including key cities) are actually facing China rather than the Pacific. The size and proximity of Taiwan in modern warfare makes these F-16s sitting ducks. There is probably not even enough lead time for most of the F-16s to take off if conflict breaks out.

IMO Taiwan should have gone for independence in the 1970s / 1980s where a prolonged fight with the PLA and likelihood of U.S. intervention was more likely.
 

jimmyjames30x30

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I want some honest assessment from PLA watchers. How delusional/realistic is this "expert"? I thought PLA has about 1400 4th Gen jets with many of them 4.5 gen such as J-10B, C and J-16, Su-35. Taiwan has about 100+ f-16 right now. If you ignore PLA's missiles and bombers and other multipliers, How much does this sale change the "balance"?
The very fact that this guy draws his conclusion by only comparing air force to air force is enough to convince me that his thoughts are nothing but amateur garbage.

Taiwan is already greatly handicapped in its strategic stance: it can only defend, because the DPP and the seperatists has already made it politically incorrect to consider Taiwan a part of China. This is actually a double edged sword. It is bad for Taiwan because this means that politically speaking, the majority of Taiwanese do not really believe that the ROC has any legitimacy claiming the entirely of China under its sovereignty. This means that under Taiwanese democracy, no Taiwanese government can effectively mobilize its citizens to put up an offensive strategy/doctrine against the Mainland (aka. “反攻大陸”).

Under this circumstance, Taiwan gives up all the possibility to have any offensive capability (amphibious assault/invade the mainland). This greatly handicaps Taiwan, because it can not longer post a real threat against the PRC. This might sound far fetched right now, but in actuality it is only in the recently 2 decades did the PRC finally stopped feeling threatened by the ROC.

The PLA has capabilities in the Strategic Rocket Force, and the army and navy that Taiwan simply do not possess. Its air force not only dwarfs Taiwan by number, it also possesses information and electromagnetic spectrum warfare capabilities that vastly out-weights Taiwan. Just look at the number of different Gaoxin special warfare aircraft models and specialties. The number of submarines in the PLAN and their capabilities is enough to decimate Taiwan defense.

The biggest problem with Taiwanese forces and defense capability is that it is purely defensive. It does not posses any noteworthy offensive capabilities in both the military and the political arena.
 
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tamsen_ikard

Junior Member
Registered Member


I think we all agree that Taiwan has no chance of survival fighting alone due to various strategic conditions and PLA capabilities as a whole. But I am only interested in a Jet fighter fleet of PLA vs Taiwan comparison, without taking into account any involvement of missiles, bombers, AWACS and so on. Just how good is PLA's fleet of fighter jets in terms of numbers and quality, compared to Taiwan's F-16 and Fck Ching Kuo and Mirage 2000?

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According to this, they have 115 F-16, 103 Fck-1, 46 Mirage 2000.

Just how good is an F-ck and mirage-2000 compared to the older J-10A and J-11A/B, SU-30MKK that PLA has? Is it equal chance of survival 1v1? Or 2 to 1 loss in favor one way or the other? Are these two fighters of Taiwan even considered 4th Gen?

All of Taiwan's F-16 are supposed to be converted to a modern F-16 standard. If you combine that with the new F-16v purchase, how good is 165 modern F-16 vs whatever number of J-10B,C and J-16 that PLA has?
 

jimmyjames30x30

Junior Member
Registered Member
The biggest problem with Taiwan from a defense perspective is that the island is simply to small and too close to China. The number of fighter jets, especially a few dozen F-16s do not change anything from a military perspective. Sale of U.S. military equipment to Taiwan is more of symbolic rather than to actually deter any Chinese military action.

If you look at the map of Taiwan, all of their high valued targets (including key cities) are actually facing China rather than the Pacific. The size and proximity of Taiwan in modern warfare makes these F-16s sitting ducks. There is probably not even enough lead time for most of the F-16s to take off if conflict breaks out.

IMO Taiwan should have gone for independence in the 1970s / 1980s where a prolonged fight with the PLA and likelihood of U.S. intervention was more likely.
Actually, geography is not the real problem. The real problem is strategic vision. Taiwan is actually surprisingly potent as an challenger to mainland China. The Ming and Qing dynasty would NOT have been so eagerly determined to take complete control of Taiwan, if Taiwan is as harmless as, say Ryukyu. Taiwan could pose a great threat to Chinese mainland just by geography alone.

The only reason such threats had been overcome in the past by China actually has to do with the internal politics of Taiwan. Simply speaking, Taiwan needs to stay as an strategically offensive outpost (or a desolate, order-less, undeveloped jungle) in order not to be taken over by the mainland.

Therefore, had the Zheng family kept on being a aggressive offensive anti-Manchu/anti-Qing base for Ming loyalists. They would have held on as a de-facto independent kingdom for much longer. The same thing goes for the ROC.
 

jimmyjames30x30

Junior Member
Registered Member
I think we all agree that Taiwan has no chance of survival fighting alone due to various strategic conditions and PLA capabilities as a whole. But I am only interested in a Jet fighter fleet of PLA vs Taiwan comparison, without taking into account any involvement of missiles, bombers, AWACS and so on. Just how good is PLA's fleet of fighter jets in terms of numbers and quality, compared to Taiwan's F-16 and Fck Ching Kuo and Mirage 2000?

Please, Log in or Register to view URLs content!


According to this, they have 115 F-16, 103 Fck-1, 46 Mirage 2000.

Just how good is an F-ck and mirage-2000 compared to the older J-10A and J-11A/B, SU-30MKK that PLA has? Is it equal chance of survival 1v1? Or 2 to 1 loss in favor one way or the other? Are these two fighters of Taiwan even considered 4th Gen?

All of Taiwan's F-16 are supposed to be converted to a modern F-16 standard. If you combine that with the new F-16v purchase, how good is 165 modern F-16 vs whatever number of J-10B,C and J-16 that PLA has?
It's a trivial addition considering the speed at which the PRC is churning out J-10B/C, J-16, and J-20. This addition will take years to actualize according to the deal. I would say the 165 F-16V is roughly equivalent to the same number of J-10C. China already has a lot of J-10B/C, I would say that at the time the F-16V conversions/procurement are all finished, the Eastern Military District would already have around the same number of J-10C alone. Not counting the large numbers of J-16, upgraded J-11B, (or even J-11D), and J-20.
 

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