Military Review

Experts in the US suggest that China is using the ideas of the American rear admiral to develop its fleet

14
Experts in the US suggest that China is using the ideas of the American rear admiral to develop its fleet

The United States is trying to assess the prospects for the People's Republic of China in terms of its Navy's leading position in the world. Already, the Chinese navy is ahead of the American competitor in a number of parameters. At the same time, the construction of warships of various classes in China is proceeding at a tremendous pace. This frightens Washington, which wants to maintain hegemony at sea.


In the American press, in connection with this, they decided to recall history about how the experience of Britain on development was studied fleet to form the US Navy. At the same time, it is noted that similar studies could help both the United States and, for example, Japan "to resist the buildup of its fleet by China." At the same time, the question of whether China itself took advantage of the earlier theoretical developments of Western experts is being studied.

As the American press writes, not so long ago the suggestion that China was fascinated by American Alfred Thayer Mahan's ideas about sea power caused some to smile. At the moment, this judgment is becoming more and more obvious common sense. Who is this Mahan?



Rear Admiral, President of the Naval Academy, successful naval theorist Alfred Thayer Mahan (1840-1914), in search of inspiration for the development of the American Navy, at one time explored the entire European era of the sailing fleet. He suggested that the American authorities follow the example of Great Britain, which in his time was the gold standard for navigation and control over the oceans. Accordingly, he devoted most of his vast work to studying how a small island nation off the coast of Europe came to rule the sea and what British achievements could teach the United States, then beginning its attempts to ascend to regional and world power.

Mahan's writings were immensely popular abroad, especially among the rising powers that harbored ambitions for dominance at sea. Imperial Japan was also a passionate contender for naval power.

Emperor Meiji of Japan and the crown prince received copies of The Influence of Sea Power on History and apparently approved of it. The Naval and Army Staff Schools of Japan adopted it as a textbook. Historian George Baer argues that "Japanese naval strategy was even more Mahanian than American."

Initially, the appearance of Japanese naval power was quite fragile compared to rival maritime powers. Tokyo missed the warning hidden in Mahan's writings, reducing him to an obsession with massive fleets of capital ships battling for dominance at sea. Rejecting remarks about the economic, material, and demographic foundations of naval power and focusing on their ideas about fleet operations left the Japanese naval commanders with a partial, superficial, and risky understanding of naval strategy.

Firstly, many Japanese learned from Mahan, as they say, not first hand. Second, the Japanese naval commanders filtered ideas from Mahan's work through their own recent history. As Mahan could have predicted, Japanese attempts to seize permanent dominance in the western Pacific had failed. Japan's maritime hegemony proved short-lived, as was the empire's existence. However, now Japan is trying to significantly increase its military budget and begin to actively develop its Navy.

Imperial Japan's meeting with Alfred Thayer Mahan is a cautionary tale for China. Communist China is not imperial Japan. For example, it does not suffer from the severe civilian-military divide that has pitted forces at home. China's maritime strategy cannot escape the control of the leaders of the Chinese Communist Party.

However, many of the factors that have distracted Japanese officials from an accurate understanding of the theory of naval power and distorted Japanese maritime strategy, according to modern American experts, may affect China today.

Thus, the United States is trying to understand whether China has taken advantage of the strategy of the aforementioned Mahan in order to build up its naval power. And also to understand how Japan should act now so that naval competition with China in the Pacific becomes real.
Author:
Photos used:
Wikipedia/Portrait of Alfred Mahan
14 comments
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  1. Victor_B
    Victor_B 10 January 2023 08: 29
    -2
    Experts in the US suggest that China is using the ideas of the American rear admiral to develop its fleet
    If thoughts are sober, why not use it?
    Experts in the US suggest that China is using the ideas of the American rear admiral to develop its fleet
    Of course, I am not a strategist, but the idea "the larger the fleet, the better" ... is obvious.
    And the article itself is the first and last paragraph about the admiral, and the article is about the defeat of Japan.
    1. FIR FIR
      FIR FIR 10 January 2023 18: 53
      +1
      Quote: Victor_B
      Of course, I am not a strategist, but the idea "the larger the fleet, the better" ... is obvious.

      If you have a shipyard and thousands of professionals to build it, if you have a lot of free money to maintain this large fleet.........
      Mahan wrote quite specifically.
  2. kill the fascist
    kill the fascist 10 January 2023 08: 32
    +1
    So what? Even if it is. Should China give up ideas or pay someone to use these ideas?
  3. Woodman
    Woodman 10 January 2023 08: 35
    +3
    in the United States are trying to understand whether China has taken advantage of the strategy of the aforementioned Mahan in order to

    And what does this concept mean?
    PS So what was Mahan's strategy all about? The fact that "Great Britain in his time was the gold standard of navigation" or that the Japanese misunderstood something?
    1. Doccor18
      Doccor18 10 January 2023 10: 51
      +3
      Quote: Lesovik
      So, what was the "Mahan strategy" anyway?

      It consisted in the fact that, first of all, the development of global trade (the sale of goods and the construction / use of a huge merchant fleet), and all this should be supported by the navy, and not vice versa, as it was once in the Japanese and Russian Empires. Further along Mahan - an increase in the number of base points / development of trade there, with their growth into centers of projection of power / colonies / strong points / bases, which ultimately leads to global maritime dominance. In a war, if one occurs, the battle fleet must gain absolute dominance at sea, by completely defeating the adversary's fleets, not forgetting about blocking enemy trade, and not vice versa. No cruising and "unlimited submarine" like Germany. Only the complete destruction of enemy warships, or (at worst) a reliable blocking of the enemy’s combat fleet in bases.
      Logical and simple.
      China has a lot of this: it has a powerful industry to produce a large number of goods, built a huge merchant fleet, began to equip regional trading centers around the world, buying up and building ports (one belt, one road), began to build a powerful navy. So far, everything is according to Mahan. The last puzzle - if the confrontation begins, then the Chinese fleet must completely destroy the enemy. If it comes out, then the flag of "another lord of the seas" will rise over the world ...
      1. kaa
        kaa 12 January 2023 10: 29
        0
        Cruising and "unlimited" in Germany did not go from a well-fed life, they simply did not have so many ships - the fleet is expensive. Great Britain then still kept its standard, the number of ships of the line in a royal navy should be equal to the next two fleets combined. So they could afford to drive the Nazi battleship with a couple of squadrons.
        The Americans released a new aircraft carrier from the slipway every 15 months, the serial numbers of the Essex crossed the fourth dozen by the end of the war. Compare with the Japanese, for whom the loss of 4 air groups at Midway was a break. That's the whole strategy for you - a powerful economy can harness for a long time, but in the end it will destroy the enemy.
  4. rotmistr60
    rotmistr60 10 January 2023 08: 43
    +1
    It's too late for the Americans to think about what China took advantage of. Whatever and what doctrine he uses, he strengthens and builds up his fleet. Trump also once said (lied) that the Russians stole the secrets of hypersonic weapons from America. So what? Russia has this weapon, but the United States does not yet.
  5. notingem
    notingem 10 January 2023 10: 21
    +1
    The Chinese are now to blame for the fact that they can read and even analyze what is written in smart and useful books. And apparently they should read comics and the opinions of moronic experts
  6. Conjurer
    Conjurer 10 January 2023 11: 17
    +2
    The US is trying to assess the prospects of the People's Republic of China
    . The point is this.
    To understand the prospects, you need to know what development strategy they use. To prevent them, you need to raise a ring in the world that the strategy they use is complete bullshit, they will not achieve anything like that. That's how they used to shout for us that cybernetics is complete bullshit and profanity. Then it worked.
    1. FIR FIR
      FIR FIR 10 January 2023 19: 02
      +1
      Quote: Conjurer
      they won't achieve anything

      Who knows.............
      For some reason, classic catapult aircraft carriers never appeared in the USSR, and money and time were spent on some limited combat-ready units. Was it without the CIA? Don't know.
  7. kafa
    kafa 10 January 2023 15: 11
    +1
    Oh what bad Chinese ... .
    US experts would have to assume that there are other countries in the world.
    Moreover , these countries have a longer history .
    Including the experience of military operations .....
  8. Peaceful SEO
    Peaceful SEO 10 January 2023 17: 59
    -2
    What the hell am I reading right now?
    Wow, it turns out that if you read the idea that the more ships, the stronger the fleet, in an American book, then this significantly strengthens the fleet? Seriously? :)))
    1. FIR FIR
      FIR FIR 10 January 2023 19: 04
      +1
      Quote: Peaceful SEO
      Go nuts, it turns out if you read the idea that the more ships, the stronger the fleet, in an American book

      Read a book. It's about something else.
  9. Peaceful SEO
    Peaceful SEO 10 January 2023 22: 57
    0
    Quote: FIR FIR
    Quote: Peaceful SEO
    Go nuts, it turns out if you read the idea that the more ships, the stronger the fleet, in an American book

    Read a book. It's about something else.

    So I commented not on the book, but on the article :)