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Destroyer USS Decatur Has Close Encounter With Chinese Warship

Guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur (DDG-73) operates in the South China Sea on Oct. 13, 2016

Arleigh Burke guided-missile destroyer USS Decatur (DDG-73) was approached Sunday morning in the South China Sea by a Chinese warship in what Navy officials are calling an unsafe and unprofessional maneuver.

At about 8:30 a.m. local time, Decatur was conducting freedom of navigation operations (FONOps) in the vicinity of Gaven Reef in the South China Sea. China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) Luyang-class destroyer approached Decatur, which was operating within 12 nautical miles of the Gaven and Johnson Reefs in the Spratly Islands, Cmdr. Nathan Christensen, a U.S. Pacific Fleet spokesman, told USNI News in an email.

“The (People’s Republic of China) PRC destroyer conducted a series of increasingly aggressive maneuvers accompanied by warnings for Decatur to depart the area. The PRC destroyer approached within 45 yards of Decatur’s bow, after which Decatur maneuvered to prevent a collision,” Christensen said.

Decatur’s route passed rocks and reefs that China has turned into artificial islands in a bid to extend its South China Sea territorial claims. These islands are not recognized by international law as meeting the requirements to qualify as sovereign territory.

Decatur has previously crossed paths with Chinese destroyers in the South China Sea. Two years ago, a Luyang-class destroyer observed Decatur operating near Chinese holdings near Triton and Woody Islands in the Paracel Islands, which China calls Xisha. At the time, a Chinese Ministry of Defense release complained Decatur violated China’s sovereignty, though Vietnam and Taiwan also claim the small sand spits.

Referring to the most recent freedom of navigation operations, Christensen said, “U.S. Forces operate in the Indo-Pacific region on a daily basis, including the South China Sea. As we have for decades, our forces will continue to fly, sail and operate anywhere international law allows. All operations are designed in accordance with international law and demonstrate that the United States will fly, sail and operate wherever international law allows. That is true in the South China Sea as in other places around the globe.”

Marines with Weapons Company, Battalion Landing Team, 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines, aim a Light Armored Vehicle’s M242 Bushmaster 25 mm chain gun during gunnery training aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD-1), underway in the South China Sea on Sept. 24, 2018. US Marine Corps Photo

Meanwhile, the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) with embarked 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) is also operating in the South China Sea. The ARG/MEU recently completed a Defense of the Amphibious Task Force (DATF) drill at sea, including live firing crew-served weapons from USS Wasp (LHD-1).

“The DATF rehearsal demonstrated the full integration of Marine Corps and Navy capabilities showcasing the intensity of joint firepower available to defend Wasp, and our forces, in a wide range of combat situations,” Col. Robert Brodie, the commanding officer of the 31st MEU, said in a statement. “Our ironclad Blue-Green partnership allows us to continuously hone our lethality through training and exercises, in preparation for any operation.”

The ARG and MEU were simulating travel through potentially dangerous waters. The Wasp ARG and 31st MEU are serving as a ready-response force in the region, according to a U.S. Indo-Pacific Command statement.

“Increasing the lethality of the Navy-Marine Corps Team is the priority for us. Sailors and Marines are doing amazing work, and we are becoming more lethal every single day,” Rear Adm. Brad Cooper, commander of Amphibious Force 7th Fleet, said in a statement. “Today, we showed once again why the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps are the premier combat forces in the western Pacific, reinforcing security and stability in this critical region.”

  • Leroy

    And why did we allow this potential attack, this possible ramming? The Chinese ship should have been warned – we will open fire if you approach within “X” number of yards. We must protect our ships and sailors at all costs, even if that means a kinetic response to overtly aggressive Chinese acts. And this was an aggressive act by any standard.

    Do we expect our Skippers to take the first blow? The possible sinking of a U.S. warship with the loss of who knows how many lives (survivors taken hostage)? No way! We should not. Set the parameters and adhere to them, otherwise these incidents will only get worse. Warn the PLAN accordingly. Same with the Iranians.

    • Curtis Conway

      The Chinese vessel was obviously operating outside of International Rules of the Road (COLREGS) and UNCLOS. In accordance with International Law I believe this is a belligerent act.

      • CharleyA

        Without a doubt, and I’d like to know the Chinese vessel type. FONs should increase after this incident, or they’ve won.

        • PolicyWonk

          The Chinese 055 is a 12k ton destroyer, while the 052’s are around 8k tons, so which one could make a difference.

          OTOH, the Chinese also have by far the largest coast guard cutter, also weighing in at 12k tons, where our largest (new) cutters are the Legend Class NSC’s, which at 4.5k tons, are comparatively puny.

          This is why I thought years ago (and still do) it would be a good idea to station an ESB aside one of the disputed reefs, acting as a mother ship/sea-base for a contingent of Mark VI patrol boats (or medium-endurance cutters), along with J-Hawks and several Vipers (in case of trouble), to conduct “maritime safety drills” (all painted in USCG colors, naturally), and “piracy prevention patrols”, etc. Get ’em used to the fact that we’re there, conducting “drills” with our allies in the region, and maintaining a constant presence.

          This way, you get to make the point while being somewhat less militaristic, as the USCG is more about law enforcement, safety, and life-saving, than offensive operations. That said, whenever the USN comes into the ‘hood, they could participate in “joint/inter-service lifesaving drills” and “anti-piracy patrols”, etc.

        • tteng

          Type-53C DDG.

          • .Hugo.

            type 052c destroyer “lanzhou (蘭州)”.

        • .Hugo.

          .
          type 052c destroyer “lanzhou (蘭州)”.

      • PolicyWonk

        Indeed, the USA used to have protocols negotiated with the Soviets to prevent sea-going/naval “misunderstandings” from boiling over into full-fledged war. That same type of protocol should likely be negotiated with the Chinese.

        However, given what we’re (in theory) attempting to accomplish in the region, especially with N. Korea, we’re not helping our cause by starting a major trade war with either the Chinese, or our allies, who’s support we’d need to be more effective in turning the thumb screws (on either).

        Trade is a huge part of and has direct linkage to the exercising of foreign policy. And attempting to get N. Korea to rid itself of nukes (a bold, however unlikely ambition, given history), requires a lot of help from China, who we’re in the process of really P-ing off.

        • Curtis Conway

          Agreement Between the Government of The United States of America and the Government of The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics on the Prevention of Incidents On and Over the High Seas. I think we called it INTSEA.

        • tim

          IMHO it is exactly the other way around. Teump tried to play nice but did not get far … now he has China over the barrel … their stock market dived, unemployment up … they already had to buy soy again. Trump has the upper hand and with rhat will force them to play nice.

          • PolicyWonk

            Fair enough – but the fact remains trade between nations is the bedrock of foreign policy for every other nation on the planet. Mr. Trump sees trade and foreign affairs as distinctly transactional – which ignores the global reality.

            China’s markets, like the US, are somewhat reactionary, and it takes time to build the capacity US farmers have. That said, it takes many years to build the relationships and markets, which when gone will be very difficult to recreate. Other nations will be very happy to take business away from the USA, so if there is a plan on the part of Mr. Trump (doubtful, given the exit from the TPP without any replacement or strategy whatsoever in place, and his well-published lack of interest in doing his homework even on topics near and supposedly dear to his heart), they should get it moving quickly to avert the economic consequences, which are forecasted to be severe.

            This would require that they tell the Chinese specifically what they want, which they’ve completely failed to do as of yet. This is because Mr. Trump, when determining he wants to crank up a new set of tariffs, is catching even his closest advisors by surprise, which indicates the aimlessness/randomness of his actions – he doesn’t bother consulting with (or listening to) his experts. This is what is causing him, and will cause him, and the USA, some pretty severe problems, even if you LIKE his policies.

          • tim

            … your speculations may be a fair assessment. However, it is speculation and I see strategy in every step Trump takes, as I think very much like him in this regard. What we know is that the road we have been on before was a divergence of benefits … better for others and worse for us. That was historically wanted, as the USA was strong and wanted to help developing nations, such as China. We needed a vector change to align our interests with that of others. It was very long overdue!

          • Duane

            Putting punitive tariffs on Chinese goods – which are reciprocated by retaliatory Chinese tariffs on American goods – does nothing to resolve the actual trade issues that matter, i.e., Chinese restrictions on US imports, and systematic theft of IP.

            Trump is stupid, and acts stupidly. He is attempting to be a bully, instead of an intelligent negotiator. What worked for him as a New York real estate developer is not what works as leader of the free world.

          • tim

            … while I like to read your educated posts concerning military matters, I think your judgement in this case may not be applicable. The tariffs are only a tool to force the opposing party to come to the table, nothing more. I am afraid that many are missing the long term goal of this strategy.

          • Duane

            Tariffs force nobody to do anything.

            You do realize, the tariffs are imposed on US citizens. The exporting country does not pay the tariffs – the foreign buyers pay the tariffs. Tariffs are a tax on your own people. That’s how tariffs have always worked.

          • tim

            … I am sure you know better, but just to be clear, as far as I understand, the importer pays the duty (tariff). The “citizen” must – as always- decide what to buy. The importer may elect to take a hit, keep the consumer end price the same, add the whole increase to the cost, or as usual, something in between when a big change happens. That is the whole point of the exercise! I can go on to explain what the next dominos are, but I know you know too. It is just odd to me, that at times you seem willingly not see them.

          • tteng

            “..tell the Chinese specifically what they want..” In essence, we are asking China to ‘ungrown’ and roll back to ‘1980/90 era China’ when its economic growth was a dependent of the US economy, thus Trump’s (or more precisely, the US national interest) goal is not so much about trade balance, but to stop Xi’s MIC-2025 initiative.

            Let me ask you: is that a rational request? ( like me asking my 20-something son to revert back to their teenager years, or even earlier nostalgia era). To me that’s an understandable but not a realistic request, China can no longer not to have globe’s largest market, production base, and talent pool, just as my son can no longer unlearn, ungrown, and undo everthing that defines him differently from his former self.

      • .Hugo.

        the chinese fleet operates in its own eez and territorial waters in the chinese scs territory, only the u.s. vessel is operating far from its own waters. fonops is a belligerent act alright. 🙂
        .

        • Curtis Conway

          “the chinese fleet operates in its own eez…” defined by China, not UNCLOS.

          “…only the u.s. vessel is operating far from its own waters.” Numerous nation’s vessels have operated their naval vessels in these International Waters waters.

          • .Hugo.

            eez delimitation is defined in unclos, china as a signatory follows unclos in full, while the u.s. has not even agreed to sign on it. i just don’t know how you can bring in unclos in your reply, hehe….

            numerous nations’ vessels have conducted innocent passage, and that’s supported by unclos. the u.s. is conducting fonops with the aim to challenge other nation’s maritime sovereignty, and that’s not supported by unclos. 🙂

    • RDF

      A collision at sea is different than rounds impacting. There is a treaty for collision at sea. Not an opening of WWIII. that is why someone else is on the bridge of that ship, and not us.

    • Duane

      No cause for firing, or threatening to fire. The Chinese ship violated COLREGS and nearly caused a collision. The Chinese only “win” if we back down and stop doing FONOPS.

      We will not withdraw.

      • Leroy

        Didn’t a Chinese task force transit between the Aleutians recently, on their way to the Bering Sea and I think even the Arctic? Did we impede their movements in any way? Absolutely not!

        Why are we always the timid guys? The one who allows our ships and people to be endangered, harassed, put upon? WE ARE OPERATING LEGALLY IN AN INTERNATIONAL COMMONS. THE WHOLE WORLD MINUS CHINA AGREES.

        You know as well as I do Duane, respect on the high seas is not given, it must be taken. There was a day when we’d never allow a foreign power to put our ships at risk. What happened, were we castrated for some unknown reason? By whom? Why are we so afraid???

        What’s good for the goose is good for the gander, and any time PLAN ships transit near Alaska or in the Bering Sea we should harass them just as they harass us. If we sit back and play the role of weakling, the kid in the schoolyard that won’t fight back, this bullying will not only continue, it will escalate.

        I say stop it NOW before we lose some good people – American sailors. We are being accosted, challenged, put in harm’s way by a foreign power and since we’re the stronger, and in the right, we must not allow this to continue.

        Come within 500 yards of a U.S. warship after radio and warning shots – 500 yards – open fire. China, Iran, Russia, others will quickly learn not to mess with U.S. warships. If that leads to a firefight or worse, hey – we didn’t provoke or start it. But we sure as he_l will finish it!

        • Duane

          Respect is not earned by violating COLREGS or ROE, or acting recklessly.

          Respect is earned by professional behavior and following the rules as they are, and not letting intimidation affect where we navigate on the world’s seas.

          We cannot force China to stop acting aggressively. Any more than you can go up to a street thug and force him to be a law abiding citizen. You can refuse to be intimidated, and handle the interaction legally, which includes, if required, self defense.

          • Leroy

            Preemption. Next time it will be a ramming. China will only up the ante because they want us out of the SCS and indeed the First Island Chain. It starts with intimidation. Unless we act, it will escalate to PLAN kinetic action against us.

            We must stop them before they attack us, which at some point they will do unless we act to forcefully assert our rights. Bullies only bully more if left alone. Think WW2 Germany, or even WW1. There are some historic parallels.

          • Duane

            You are missing the entire point of what China is trying to do. They know they do not have the military might to force the US or our allies out of the South China Sea. But they bluster and threaten and act threateningly, like bullies do. But bullies only succeed when they win psychologically. Bullies almost never are the most powerful fighters .. they are just the most showy, most belligerant acting aholes on the playground …. and the moment one of their intended victims calls their bluff, the entire psychological basis of their bullying evaporates, and the bullying tactic fails.

            As long as the US keeps performing FONOPs in the disputed areas, the bullying tactic cannot possibly work.

          • incredulous1

            until there is a collision or shots fired and we do nothing. Then they are emboldened further. It is not surprising they think they can chase us away now since Obama’s policy was to accommodate them. Now we have shifted and they can’t deal with it.

          • Todd

            Many years ago, while on a business trip to the mean streets of Jersey, I was walking back to the transit station and coming around the corner, there right in front of me was a large group of gang members taking up the entire sidewalk. In business attire, carrying an expensive laptop, etc., I had one of two choices, turn around immediately and basically flee, which they would’ve noticed and no doubt then would have jumped me, since they had superior numbers. Or I could man up and walk right through them, see the look of shock on their faces as they moved out of my way. There’s no doubt in my mind that you would’ve chosen the former.

          • Duane

            What I would personally choose to do is immaterial. But note that I said that operating legally, one has the right of self defense. If I was carrying a concealed weapon, and there was no way to deescalate the situation, such as by turning around and walking away, I would have the right to self defense, at least in my home state of Florida (in other states, I dunno?). In Florida the law actually allows one to stand their ground and not walk away and deescalate, but that is a bad law that allows idiots who think like you that gunning down others in the street is actually the preferred option in life.

            But on the other hand, “manning up” as you described it, is a good way to get killed. Guys like you with big egos and small brains get killed all the time by “manning up” in the face of determined killers.

            What I described as current national policy on Rules of Engagement is exactly the right way to operate. Be prepared to defend yourself, but also do whatever is reasonably necessary to deescalate a potentially violent outcome.

            But if guys like you with big egos and small brains prefer that our commanders unnecessarily get their sailors killed by violating the ROE and acting stupidly, then I can easily understand why the Navy would never let you have command of a rowboat, let alone a DDG 51.

          • Jack D Ripper

            keep timid

          • Duane

            Intelligent is not timid.

            Stupid is not brave.

          • wilkinak

            I’ve been in same situation as Todd – on my own street, with a bunch of thuglettes who decided they needed to be right where I and an elderly lady were talking. I could have let them move our conversation, but then it would have never ended. Personally I refuse to be intimidated on my own street in broad daylight. Maybe you are too much of wimp to tell them to move on, but I’m not. You might not have a problem with precedent set by allowing a bunch of teenagers to intimidate grown women in their homes, but I do.

            BTW, I have the police non-emergency # is literally on speed dial, lest you think I fight all these battles by myself.

          • Duane

            It is not wimpy to deescalate. Only fake chestpounding he-men, men with egos far bigger than their brains, think it is better to start a fight than to walk away. It isn’t always possible to deescalate, and that is why concealed carry is a right we Americans have. But anybody who has the opportunity to deescalate and chooses not to, resulting in someone getting hurt or killed, is an idiot.

            Stupid egotists pull that kind of stuff all the time…. sometimes they get themselves killed, sometimes they do the killing, but it is almost always over nothing worth anybody’s life.

            Relying on calling the police to save your butt is dumb too …. when seconds count, the police are always at least minutes away.

          • wilkinak

            So what do you do when a bunch of teens on your street try to intimidate you? What is your answer? From your post, it sounds like I’m damned if I do & damned if I don’t.

            If I call them out, I’m a ‘chest pounding egoist’; if I call the cops, I’m a fool.

            Personally, I feel I did the right thing. The kids didn’t bother me again; I was not an easy mark. Eventually they moved out. I’m pretty sure there’s one who had a future in felonies.

          • Dean687

            Next time, just send in the mighty, powerful, bar-none battle frigate, the LCS. The chinks would be so busy laughing that they won’t even leave port, then we would have total freedom of navigation.

          • incredulous1

            Im not so sure respect is our goal anymore as it won’t affect Chinese ambition one iota. What we really need is security.

        • .Hugo.

          the chinese fleet was only sailing through without conducting any operation, and china has never advertised anything like fonops to provoke other states. it was innocent passage and the u.s. has no right to impede the movement of the passing chinese fleet.
          .
          it’s your sailors challenging china’s maritime sovereignty, that’s why they’re being challenged back.
          .
          china has not authorized any foreign vessels to open fire in its waters. china has intercepted u.s. spy ships and warships all the time, russia/ussr has rammed u.s. warships, and iran has even captured u.s. sailors. so how have the u.s. warships not being messed with? don’t twist facts around, you provoked and started it, you will be responsible for any unfortunate happenings caused by it. 🙂
          .

      • Jack D Ripper

        it appeared “we” backed down this time as usual,

      • .Hugo.

        the u.s. has violated unclos and its vessel was operating under a military mission (fonops) in the chinese territorial waters, the chinese navy was authorized to take necessary actions to repel the intruding u.s. vessel. it was a law enforcing engagement conducted by the chinese ship of war. you should read part a 1(c) first.
        .
        “Nothing in these Rules shall interfere with the operation of any special rule made by the government of any State with respect to additional station or signal lights, shapes or whistle signals for ships of war and vessels proceeding under convoy….”
        .
        .
        ….and you have withdrawn at the end…. 🙂

    • tim

      I assume we still have the skills from dancing with the bear to handle this … this is going to be a very long dance competition.

    • Ed L

      Swapping paint is completely different than a shot across the bow

    • incredulous1

      Sounds like we are still operating under Obama’s RoE for now, except that we don’t do innocent passage. That may not be a good combination. I agree that we should immediately schedule more FONOPS, like on a weekly basis as long as they want to act like we are violating something sovereign. Maybe another action in the Hague on COLREGS violations and the PLAN and CCG going after Filipino fishermen in their own territory [Palawan].

      • SDW

        We transit straits, navigate through archipelagoes, and shave a few miles by cutting the corners of capes all the time. Innocent Passage allows for this and has for centuries. What makes it innocent is the warship’s behavior. IP generally means having the guns pointed fore and aft, not firing up a fire control radar nor conducting flight operations, and similar non-threatening behaviors. It requires that the warship follow the same “rules of the road” as commercial traffic like shipping lanes, keeping in contact with recognized authorities, and not anchoring, meandering, or otherwise prolonging the transit. Some innocent passages are FONOPS but the littoral countries act like grown-ups and don’t consider them anything but a normal transit.

        • .Hugo.

          fonops is never normal transit, it is set up and conducted specifically to challenge a state’s maritime sovereignty.
          .
          the chinese navy would not challenge the intruding u.s. vessels in such intensity if it was just sailing through.
          .

          • incredulous1

            Correct Hugo. And our FONOPS specifically changed last year to include maneuvering well inside of 12 miles and conducting maneuvers and air ops. Some people are still trying to protect the legacy of the man who got us head long into this shyte show.

          • SDW

            They are to challenge a **claim** of sovereignty, one that we don’t recognize like dredging sand, dumping it on wet rocks, and calling the resultant mess an island.

          • .Hugo.

            that sovereignty was recognized even by the u.s. when it was first *claimed* by the republic of china — an ally.
            .
            dredging sand is very much allowed by unclos — the convention the u.s. has refused to sign but still wants to enjoy its rights. 🙂
            .

        • incredulous1

          Yes and we did conduct innocent passage each and every time under Obama’s RoE’s and there are other elements of the definition as well. Now under Trump’s RoE’s we conduct maneuvers and air ops as well precisely for this reason so everyone knows we are NOT recognizing any of China’s claim of a 12 mile limit.

  • Curtis Conway

    Before 2012 there was no surface structures on this reef, then rocks and concrete started showing up. Structures started showing up soon thereafter. The Chinese have been observed dropping concrete blocks at numerous locations across the coral reefs in the South China Sea, in violation of UNCLOS, interfering with the local ecology, for selfish state gain, to the detriment of all nations who fish in these International Waters.

    • Stephen

      Some of those reefs are w/i the Philippine 200 mile EEZ; nearly a 1000 miles from China… Larger than the Strait of Hormuz; same consequences. Choke points are key in staging assets & logistics. America missed with this one. Philippines chose Marcos over statehood; imagine that archipelago as the 49th & 50th states…

      • Curtis Conway

        This specific reef is outside the 200 mile line, but you are correct, some are on or inside the line.

      • .Hugo.

        if distance matters then can you explain why the falklands and the south georgia deep down in the south atlantic ocean and much closer to argentina british? they yield eez too and it’s british eez. 🙂
        .
        eez is delimited from the shore of the coastal state, as china owns the islands, its eez is delimited from the islands. when there is overlapping with other coastal state then they should negotiate for an equal split. the philippines has never negotiated with china and wanted to grab the whole part by invasion (from the 1960s to 1999) and even tried to change the name of the sea.
        .

        • Stephen

          The Falklands are a vestige of the British Empire. Argentina missed an opportunity to re-take the islands by supplying a female work-force. British occupants were mostly male. Argentine moms result in Spanish speaking children; peaceful transfer… You are not suggesting that the British claim America because it once occupied this land; are you? If that’s your point; China could be in that claim, as well…

          • .Hugo.

            ah so even you have to admit that distance is not the only factor to determine ownership.

            by the way, the british did claim america, only they lost the war with the american settlers. 🙂

          • Stephen

            The British established or acquired the American Colonies. Distracted by European conflict & mismanagement by the Crown facilitated an American rejection of the British overlords, hence the American Revolution. Not unlike China; the withered vine was easy pickings for Chairman Mao.

          • .Hugo.

            the qing dynasty was weak to counter foreign intrusion, hence the chinese revolution, then the civil war which has led to mao becoming the chairman too. 🙂

          • Stephen

            The withered vine marked the end of Imperial China; what has emerged is a new modern China that, like Britain, would cling to what predecessor versions once claimed. If you embrace those ideas; you should learn Mongolian…

          • .Hugo.

            if i embrace those ideas, i would not learn mongolian but still han/mandarin as there were numerous han dynasties before it. the yuan dynasty could not even last a century.
            .
            by the way, a “new modern china” could not take shape until the late 1980s due to all sorts of domestic and international upheavals.
            .

      • SDW

        and you think the federal subsidy is high for Puerto Rico?

    • .Hugo.

      dropping concrete blocks? or surface rocks mistaken as concrete blocks?
      .
      the area is known as “ten thousand mile stone pool (萬里石塘)” in ancient chinese text, do you know why?
      .
      by the way, a coastal state is entitled to build in its own eez based on unclos. and eez is assigned to the specific coastal state so it can manage its own maritime resources.

      • Curtis Conway

        There you go ladies and gentlemen. China’s definition of the truth, ‘and no one else’s’, is what is important in this equation, according to the Chinese, even to the (or specifically designed to be) detriment of their neighbors. China sounds like the Old Soviet Union where their vast resources and continent of which they have control is NOT ENOUGH!

        • .Hugo.

          definition of the truth is clearly shown in these pcitures:

          scmpDOTcom/news/china/article/1309410/
          scarborough-shoal-pictures-cast-doubt-concrete-structure-claims

          scmpDOTcom/news/china/article/1338076/
          aquino-says-manila-wrong-about-concrete-blocks-scarborough-shoal

          the u.s. really thinks it is still the cold war, or it has to think that way to keep itself comfortable? 🙂

          keep your “not enough” for the rogue states like vietnam and the philippines, when china has announced its maritime border in 1947. no state, including the u.s., has ever protested. 🙂

    • Centaurus

      Can we drop some blocks of high-explosive somewhere on top of them ? Disturb their “ecology”, oh sorry…the chinese don’t live on the same planet as the rest of us because we are just dragon-shyte to them. They better stop interfering in our midterms or we’re gonna get really MAD !

  • glenn2ns

    concrete blocks, rocks, etc. are akin to building an oil rig of the coast. . .does an oil rig derive sovereign rights to its owner?

  • Klaas Komvaak

    Any Submarines nearby that can warn this chinese ?

    • .Hugo.

      how? it’s a type 052c destroyer with asw capability. china will have submarine in the area too.
      .

      • Centaurus

        That can go to the bottom, too. ‘Sleep w ‘fishes….zzzzzzzz*******

        • .Hugo.

          with just 1 destroyer which can’t even sustain a ramming? oh sure… 😀
          .

          • Centaurus

            We just have to get up a running head O’ steam. Wank ’em amidships. Chinese all fall down, paddling with chopstix.

      • CharleyA

        Who said anything about subs?

        • .Hugo.

          said klass:

          Klaas Komvaak • 3 days ago
          Any Submarines nearby that can warn this chinese ?

          🙂
          .

    • CharleyA

      What do you think? FONOPSs are monitored by supporting aircraft and other assets.
      An attack on a US Navy vessel by the Chinese would have severe consequences,

  • RobM1981

    “Destroyer USS Decatur Has Close Encounter With Chinese Warship”

    Wasn’t that the whole point of the transit? What did we expect, a Tea Ceremony?

    You don’t play Chicken unless you are prepared to get close. Really close.

  • Ed L

    The People’s Liberation Army Navy Surface Force has approximately 30 Destroyers, 50 Frigates, 50 corvettes, numberous missile boats and don’t forget the 25,000 strong PLA coastal defense force with many many many anti ship missiles

    • .Hugo.

      just the pla navy southern fleet itself has 6 type 052c/d aesa destroyers, 8 type 054 all purpose destroyers, and 8 type 056 corvettes. it also has 5 regiments of strike fighters and long range bombers.
      .
      it is also reported that newest type 055 destroyers will be assigned to the southern fleet. there are at least 2 of them currently.
      .

  • Hugh

    Any further details? Were the Chinese trying to force right of way?? It’s one thing for 2 approaching ships to observe the rules of right of way, but what then of one deliberately accelerates and cuts in front of the other?!?

  • Ser Arthur Dayne

    Does anyone know the specific (well when I say specific, perhaps I should say specific enough that you can tell us without it being classified etc) rules of engagement and/or procedures for defending against major-nation ships in situations like this? IE, could the US captain fire or would he have to just sit there until he was rammed? I ask this because I believe it was in 2007, MAYBE 2008 early but I think 2007, when Iran tensions were highest and there was talk the W white house was going to bomb Iran- and they sent swarm boats at a DDG in the Strait and even said on the radio “you are going to blow up soon!” something like that. And there was video/audio. According to the news reports back then, the US DDG was in the countdown to fire and the CO had given the order to fire when the ship crosses X line, and Riiiiiiiiight before the guy in control pushed the button to shoot, the Iranian ships turned away. Well now we get Russia and China etc buzzing us all the time. I am wondering what the rules are specifically, when does it get to the point where we can blow them up.

    • Pete Novick

      Five will get you ten the FONOPS peacetime ROE document is classified SECRET/NOFORN.

      It’s content probably explains why the PLAN destroyer is not on the bottom.

      • Ser Arthur Dayne

        Fair enough, I mean look, I wasn’t asking for the contents of a secret document or battle plan of war, I’m just a dooshbag that plays Dangerous Waters and loves the US military. Also like to study odd things like this half-aced academically. But I can understand it not being able to be told, just was asking.

      • .Hugo.

        restrain from firing, that’s why the u.s. destroyer is not on the bottom too. 🙂
        .

        • Centaurus

          NO, no no ! Now we show these wanna-be-cowboys just how we play Chicken-of-the-Sea…Cold War / Russian Style ! What do we have Harpoons for, anyway ?
          We haven’t tried using any of those since Libya in 1986 or ‘7 , when we pooped on Gaddafi’s son, by “accident”. ‘Made short work of some Libyan Patrol Boats.
          Will be fun to see how it can-opens a Chinese Junk .

          • .Hugo.

            harpoons in such short distance? sure, let’s try….
            .
            by the way, the chinese destroyer has ciws too. 🙂
            .
            you started the vietnam war by “accident’ in the gulf of tonkin too, we all know what happened at the end. and oh, recently iranian patrol boats have arrested u.s. sailors, will be fun to see the pics again too. 😀
            .

          • Centaurus

            We can fire harpoons from air platforms…B-52’s, et. al.

          • .Hugo.

            the air launch harpoon has a range of 185km max, and its subsonic. it’s well within chinese vessel’s radar detection and weapon range, including your big fat b-52.

          • Centaurus

            The Harpoons may be launched by a flock P-8 Poseidon and we can also fry them with the UGM-84 sub-launched version. So nyahhaa….and now we have pictures of this fabled incident, so the characteristly hegemonic rantings of the PLAN can go straight to the bottom, too.

          • .Hugo.

            p-8 is big and slow to a capable air defense network.
            .
            the ugm-84 has even a shorter range of 140 km and it’s max speed is just mach 0.7, giving the chinese fleet at least a long 9 minutes to take it down, even enough time to launch asw choppers to hunt for the sub, so let’s see who will go straight down to the bottom, hehe….
            .

          • Centaurus

            Curses man, will your knowledge of the facts ever stop ? Foils to the right, thrusts to the left. A one-man/woman/LGBTQ-RSTUVWXYZ armory. I shall run, defeated , tail between legs. Agh…ptooie

          • .Hugo.

            oh sorry, maybe i am wrong then.
            .
            should i say the p-8 is a supersonic stealthy patrol plane that is invisible to every radar and every human eye, and the harpoon will take down its target at light speed? 😛
            .

          • Centaurus

            Absolutely. The armaments of the past will do well to fight into the future.
            Bring back the dive-bomber, Higgins boat and Sherman tank. If we close our eyes, then we will be invisible to the enemy.
            Up and over, onward through the fog

    • R’ Yitzchak M

      360 ships Navy and close proximity to the numerious bases of sophisticated “can oppeners” would make it STUPID.. a “wanton stupid”

      • Centaurus

        We can’t even build up to a 360 ship Navy. All our manufac. jobs are gone ! Left to sole sources for tooling , and other more horrible facts of our absent manufacturing base. China has eaten us alive while we watch Football and get fat.

        • R’ Yitzchak M

          Our Education on the long run is by far the most dangerous development “academia” is busy indoctrinating our kids instead of educating them. China is first for the last 20 years we are on the 26th place. Funding failure instead rewarding successes. Tenure to IDIOTS instead to give the VOUCHERS to the PARENTS so the parents will have choice to make sure that their children will have future. Instead wasting moneys on idiots.. that is a true concern in my humble opinion.

          • Centaurus

            And educating 250,000 chinese spies / year to steal tech., patents, tech. patents…but they pay full price to the “Institutions”. Where is the OUTRAGE !

  • Pete Novick

    In 1996, during what is now referred to as the Third Taiwan Strait Crisis, the Republic of China (Taiwan) held its first open presidential election, during which one of the major political parties, the Democratic People’s Party (DPP), openly called for Taiwan to declare itself an independent country, separate from China and no longer subject to the notion of “Two Countries, One China.”

    In addition to many hostile military maneuvers designed to intimidate Taiwan voters, the PRC conducted missile exercises, launching missiles that flew over the northern part of Taiwan and fell into the sea.

    The United States ordered two carrier strike groups, USS Nimitz Strike Group and USS Independence Strike Group, to transit the Taiwan Strait, the ocean area separating Taiwan from China.

    Perhaps it is time to make such a transit again.

    • .Hugo.

      exactly because of the carrier deployments, china has built up its massive anti-ship capability and its navy, and no more u.s. carriers have sailed through the taiwan strait since then.
      .
      so yes, i am looking forward to see how the u.s. can do it again without being intercepted. 🙂
      .
      i have no idea why the u.s. has the right to meddle with china’s domestic affairs in the first place.
      .

    • R’ Yitzchak M

      To place to carrier task forces AT needles risk makes no sense.. perhaps SELING Taiwan F18’s Super Hornets and Aegis class ships World ne critical for world PEACE. Stop rewarding Chinese raw aggression and try instead.. perhaps a consequences for a change. China is SMART.. actually very smart. They built 360 ships Navy with 60 subs and they are accelerating their production. It is no longer a matter of “optics”.. but for a realistic strategic REassesment. Of Taiwan is gone U.S Navy AT least in the (whole) Pacific will become irrelevant. There is very short window of opportunity.. for the U.S to MATTER in the region and Taiwan is the most critical test is there going to be peace in the whole region or war of attrition that China is won.. (if we deliver the main peace of the game TAIWAN wil LEGITMIZE the whole South China Sea claim

      • .Hugo.

        taiwan is a chinese province run by a different chinese government, it is china’s own affair to manage the relationship across the taiwan strait, and it has nothing to do with the u.s. whatsoever.
        .

        • R’ Yitzchak M

          World of respect of national self determination and people’s decision RESPECTING THE INTERNATIONAL LAWS. Revolution is an act of forceful overthrow of THE LEGITIMATE Government by force murdering own population for the interests of THE FOREIGN POWER it is an act of high treason. Munching on its NEIGHBORS is not good. And should not be tolerated in my humble opinion. You can eventually buy all your neighbourhood if you are smart.. I beleive you ARE SMART, and start acting ACCORDINGLY

          • .Hugo.

            so which international laws has china not followed?
            .
            and so revolution is good, and it usually start with small riots. so why not tell me why even the u.s. will crack down on riots taken place all over the country? 🙂
            .
            and munching neighbors? are you talking about small bites that the rogue states in the scs have taken from china after oil and gas were discovered, or 20 years after china announced its maritime border? 🙂
            .

          • R’ Yitzchak M

            When country decide to give up on law for whatever reason it gave up the RULE OF LAW the mob and the thugs will fill up the vacuum. Organization and its members should be charged for damages. Any 3 assaulants converging on a single person should be treated as an attempt on persons life.. “standing ground” is valuable rule for self defense so thanks G-d for police and the US Constitution.

            Any respectable nation begins with the SELF RESPECT. Trusting it’s own people to own and to wear the gun. For self defense and wanton violence.

            Revolution happens when the thugs got the guns and CITIZENS were denied rights to defend themselves Germany, Russia, China?

          • .Hugo.

            right, so just which international law has china now followed? 🙂
            .

  • Jack D Ripper

    So the answer to the slopes is “avoid and whine”

    • R’ Yitzchak M

      No.. actually HELP the Taiwan enough to MATTER because it really DOES MATTER

  • R’ Yitzchak M

    If China “plays” its “cards well” for example BRIBING? Or outright PURCHASING Taiwan with the JOBS, ECCONOMICAL INCENTIVES and HONG KONG “nization” of Taiwan. AT that point Pacific is.. GONE!!!

    Koreas
    Japan
    Vietnam
    Philiphines

    Consolidation of the region would be its next step.. like deal with Russias by evolving its strategic partnership toward moving to the North Seas incorporating Siberian and North Seas natural gass resources.. feeding energy to its bulging DOMESTIC MARKET.

    Pakistan Indian conflict would be another “glorious path” toward owning the mastery and ovnership of its military genius in game of stratigic atrition i guess will and its determination to matter really DOES MATTER

    • If you think Vietnam and Japan will happily accede to Chinese hegemony you might want to read some history.

      • .Hugo.

        vietnam is heavily beaten in the last war with chin, it is still recovering today and it can no longer challenge china.
        .
        japan is having constant territorial disputes with all of its surrounding neighbors, it has an aging and shrinking population and it has no natural resources, so like or it not, it has to be a u.s. lapdog after ww2.
        .

        • “Heavily beaten in the last war” – do you mean the war where outnumbered Vietnamese forces fought China to a standstill in open warfare, forcing China to declare victory and go home after just two weeks of fighting?

          As to Japan’s shrinking population and territorial disputes – well, you might want to look in a mirror as the same can be said for China.

          • .Hugo.

            knew you would say that…. 😉
            .
            there was no standstill at all, there was virtually no more capable vietnamese defense along the way to hanoi to stop a chinese advance — if that were chna’s plan. vietnam should consider itself lucky that china’s strategic and tactical goals did not include taking hanoi.
            .
            and when looking at vietnam’s economy and equipment today, we know how far behind it is when compared with china after the war. 🙂
            .
            and by comparing gdp (gross and ppp), population growth rate, savings rate, and the demographic charts of china and japan, i can certainly see who is in a bigger trouble, and that’s not china.
            .

          • You know, “Beijing Bob” has a nice ring to it.

          • .Hugo.

            i don’t have to care about beijing bob, i only need to know china’s position and determination to defend its territorial integrity.

        • R’ Yitzchak M

          Vietnam “beaten”? Not yet.. but with severe limitations of availability of modern weapons I.e 155mm Coperhead guided ammo could be a major game changer Vietnam knows how to put up its fight it could be a major pain in Chinese but..

          Logistics to Vietnam is a NIGHTMARE to the China.. effort to “TEACH” a “lesson” to Vietnam was ACTUALLY a face saving RETREAT for China.

          Just to set the record straight

          • .Hugo.

            china did not have advanced weapons either when repelling the vietnamese invaders. yet you are right that 40 years after the war, china has all the advanced weaponry it needs while vietnam is still using soviet tanks of the cold war era…. 🙂
            .
            both strategic and tactic goals have never included taking hanoi, that was also communicated to president ford by deng xiaoping during deng’s u.s. visit. when the goals were achieved, the chinese troops pulled out, leaving a ruined vietnam which has lost cambodia and it is still recovering today.
            .
            just to set the record straight. 🙂
            .

  • Lazarus

    In 1988 and 1989, USS Yorktown and USS Caron both had literal “run in’s” with Soviet Krivak and Grisha class frigates in the Black Sea. Welcome back to the real world of Great Power Competition. Messy incidents like this are to be expected.

    Video of these incidents is on YouTube and worth seeing.