Here is China’s new strategy for killing U.S. Navy aircraft carriers

141118-N-UN259-203 PACIFIC OCEAN (Nov. 18, 2014) The Nimitz-Class aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73), left, is underway in formation with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Kongou-class guided-missile destroyer JS Kirishima (DDG 174) during exercise Keen Sword 15. Keen Sword is a joint-bilateral training exercise involving the U.S. military and the Japan Self-Defense Force to increase combat readiness and interoperability of U.S. forces and the Japan Self-Defense Force. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Alonzo M. Archer/Released)

Some military observers in China believe the country’s emerging drone technology could someday be weaponized and used in ‘swarms’ to overwhelm large conventional platforms like U.S. aircraft carriers.

The so-called ‘drone battalion’ concept was unveiled by the state-owned China Electronics Technology Group Corp at an air show in June. It envisions 119 combat-ready drones equipped with sensors and the ability to communicate with each other; currently, tests involving strike groups numbering 1,000 drones is underway, officials CETGC said.

Swarms of military drones may be able to carry missiles or warheads once load restraint issues are resolved.

However, state-run Chinese media is refuting such a concept. Experts noted that American carriers are well-protected by a number of surface combatants and supply ships, not to mention submarines.

“So in order to carry out an attack, these drones will have to be delivered, for instance, by stealth fighters, within close range of a carrier, risking being shot down midway, and, what’s the point of using drones when these fighters can launch attacks themselves when they are this close [to the carrier],” an expert was quoted as saying. [source]

(Analyst comment: Quickly, China would downplay this, of course, if proof-of-concept trials are really underway.)

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