reply to post by CosmicCitizen
I have a relative who flies F-16s and was recently stationed in South Korea (now stateside)....and I spoke with him over the holiday and he is
of the opinion (read brainwashed) that the US would defeat China (not just NK) "handily."
This is mostly circumstantial. Ultimately - yes, the U.S. would trash China in a military conflict, and many of them are well aware of this little
factoid. They are also not sitting nearly as pretty as they would like to bash our economic state. Contrary to popular opinion - we are not indebted
to China. Recent inflation of the dollar and massive red-line spending from Congress have demonstrated that, even if China wanted to, they couldn't
flood the market with dollars and cripple our economy (which is about the only economic 'gun' to our head). As far as industry is concerned - yes,
they make a lot of stuff - but nothing we couldn't get from any other country on the planet with minimal subsidiary efforts of our own.
The most difficult industry to pick up slack with would be the textile industry - very high demand and Americans are not too keen on buying used
clothing, for the most part. Shoes would also be included in this. Domestic suppliers could not meet demand (even if people could afford to pay for
domestically produced textiles on the average), and foreign suppliers would find it hard to ramp up to meet demand (and not just American demand - a
lot of other countries get goods from China, too - and a war between America and China would pretty much shut down almost all exports from China).
I'm not saying we wouldn't bat an eye - but it is not beyond the scope of our military capability. The carrier battle group already there would be
more than enough to disable most of China's critical strategic assets. It would likely be lost to attrition - but even a preemptive strike would do
little to change the outcome to favor China. The current battle group in the Asian Pacific would decimate China's ability to project its military
and the rest of the Navy would form a "F*%^ China" party and try not to be shown up by the Indians (who would have already started a ground and
Naval war with China the moment it was clear they were unable to project). Russia would also likely take the opportunity to what it feels are its
borders very clear to China, where there has been mounting tension along the border with Siberia and concern over China's growing need for resources
beyond what other countries are capable/willing to supply them.
So, the U.S. loses a carrier battle group - China gets gang-banged and loses all of its industrial and economic standing as countries find alternative
I guess they only taught those guys dogfights and didnt cover aspects of a nuclear war with them...let alone a conventional war against
millions of soldiers.
China doesn't have the nuclear arsenal to be a threat.
Only about 20 missiles they have in their arsenal have the range to strike the U.S. mainland. Those are roughly a 4.5 megaton warhead (+/- 500
Even if they could miraculously manage to deploy their entire nuclear arsenal both tactical and strategic yields (and somehow launch their IRBMs that
would otherwise fall harmlessly to the sea) - the U.S. could easily survive the attrition. There would be no need to retaliate with a nuclear arsenal
- their existing arsenal with an effective range to be considered a threat is easily engaged and defeated by our anti-ballistic missile shield in
service through the Navy and various locations around the continental U.S. It's by no means complete, yet - but more than capable of dealing with
the threat posed by China.
They could, however, wipe out Korea.
Their main purpose with the nuclear arsenal is to deter attack from India and, to a lesser extent Russia and European powers.
As for their soldiers.... what are they going to do? Swim over here?
Sure - they are a concern when it comes to Korea (China likes to cosplay as Korean and Vietnamese soldiers on the battlefield), but there's buku
landmines all over the DMZ with the ROK/USFK capable of deploying more fields with missiles when and where required. That makes an offensive infantry
war hard to realize. Tunnels are a good work-around, but they are also choke-points that make the "human wave" tactic more like a "human-clogged
The weapons in use today are quite a bit different than they were 50 years ago. We have cluster munitions that can place the equivalent of a
hand-grenade in every square yard within a hundred yard radius and deliver that from over 90 nautical miles away.
The infantry would be more annoying than effective without air superiority - which neither North Korea or China could establish over the ROK's Air
Force - not to mention the U.S. and Japan flying shotgun.
The biggest problem with this war is just how small of an area we are dealing with and how many people are there. A huge portion of South Korea's
population is within range of North Korea's artillery - and any additional fighting is going to be done pretty much on top of someone's farm or in
someone's store/apartment. About the only way you won't be doing that is if you climb up a damned near vertical mountain slope and fight there (and
then you'll be fighting in a Buddhist temple).