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posted by Fnord666 on Friday December 15 2017, @11:45AM   Printer-friendly
from the at-least-it's-in-the-air dept.

Has the People's Republic caught up?

The Chengdu J-20 marks the first entry of a multirole stealth fighter into China's armed forces. According to the Department of Defense (DOD), China views stealth technology as a core component in the transformation of its air force from "a predominantly territorial air force to one capable of conducting both offensive and defensive operations." Designed for enhanced stealth and maneuverability, the J-20 has the potential to provide China with a variety of previously unavailable air combat options and enhance its capability to project power.

As an advanced multirole stealth fighter, it is speculated that the J-20 can fulfill both air-to-air and air-to-ground combat roles for the People's Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) and the aviation branch of the People's Liberation Army Navy (referred to as either Naval Aviation or the PLAN-AF). According to PLAAF Senior Colonel Shen Jinke, the J-20 will enhance the overall combat capability of China's air force. A 2016 report by the DOD states that the J-20 represents a critical step in China's efforts to develop "advanced aircraft to improve its regional power projection capabilities and to strengthen its ability to strike regional airbases and facilities." In 2014, the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission described the J-20 as "more advanced than any other fighter currently deployed by Asia Pacific countries."

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  • (Score: 2) by Arik on Sunday December 17 2017, @11:55PM (3 children)

    by Arik (4543) on Sunday December 17 2017, @11:55PM (#611161) Journal
    "35 years of one-child policy and their population still grew by ~40% during that time... sooner or later the center won't be able to hold all the Chinese people. "

    That's later, that's very very later.

    In the meantime, the large majority of China is sparsely inhabited. Even as the total population has grown over that 35 year period, the rural areas have nonetheless been partly depopulated. The population is crowding into the center. Two of the most important tier1 cities, Guangzhou and Shanghai, are east coast cities, as is Hong Kong of course. The population growth is heavily concentrated right there on the south-eastern seaboard.

    Take a look at scroll down to the map.
    If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
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  • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Monday December 18 2017, @02:01AM (2 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Monday December 18 2017, @02:01AM (#611214)

    Even when people live in cities, they still consume resources that require land to produce. As lifestyles "westernize" they'll demand more foods that take more land to produce. That depopulated rural countryside may go into mechanized farming, but the land and sea can only produce so much. When they are net-importing food, they may get nervous about that.

    🌻🌻 []
    • (Score: 2) by Arik on Monday December 18 2017, @02:42AM (1 child)

      by Arik (4543) on Monday December 18 2017, @02:42AM (#611240) Journal
      Oh, that's definitely a looming issue. They already import food, btw.

      But that's only set to expand. There is virtually no mechanized agriculture. Worse yet, the farms are predominantly worked by the elderly. The typical site in agricultural areas is grandparents working the field while babysitting their grandkids. The parents are gone to the city and the kids will join them when they are old enough to start school.

      Chinese rice imports rose almost 41% just between 2012 and 2016.

      And most of that rice is imported by ship, into one of those southeast seaboard port cities.

      Just one more reason they are absolutely going to spend whatever they have to spend to make that body of water too dangerous for intruders.
      If laughter is the best medicine, who are the best doctors?
      • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Monday December 18 2017, @12:53PM

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Monday December 18 2017, @12:53PM (#611362)

        I wouldn't be surprised at a move to annex those food sources at some point in the future - especially after domestic production gets straightened out and still can't meet demand. Meanwhile, the ability to prevent naval blockade would seem to be a solid requirement for their military.

        🌻🌻 []