China’s Intentions Still Murky, says DOD

Despite “modest improvements” in transparency over the past year, “many uncertainties” remain about how China intends use its expanding military capabilities, states the Defense Department’s 2010 annual report to Congress on the Chinese military. The Asian giant continues its military buildup opposite Taiwan “unabated,” and the balance of forces across the Taiwan Strait continues to shift in its favor, according to the report issued Monday. While China’s ability to sustain military power at a distance “remains limited,” those capabilities are becoming more robust, as are China’s abilities to deny access. For example, China has “one of the largest” inventories of long-range, advanced anti-aircraft missile systems and newer and more advanced combat aircraft “make up a growing percentage” of its inventory. Further, the communist power is “developing the ability to attack an adversary’s space assets, accelerating the militarization of space,” states the report. (China report) (See also AFPS report by Jim Garamone)