Can't escape history...even in the vast Pacific Ocean

The Diplomat is one of my new favorite websites.  Along with the Small Wars Journal, which I have blogged about before, they are my go to websites for world events news every day...seriously, you don't think I read the DailyKos or the HuffPo do you?

One of the major topics of discussion is the current situation in the South and East China Seas and the strategic matchup between the USN and Chinese navy, popularly known as the Peoples Liberation Army Navy or PLAN (don't ask me, I'm not  a Mao worshipper, unlike some lefty Democrats and I didn't name it).

And of course a major part of this discussion is not Michelle's kabillion dollar junket to China on our dime or the bungling Asian foreign policy of this Administration (seriously Caroline Kennedy is the Ambassador to Japan---why?) but the notion of China whipping out a little "counter-intervention" whoopass on the US while conquering whatever reefs, shoals, islets, and islands it wishes from their various neighbors...all in the name guessed it...oil and gas thought to be on the bottom of the South and East China Sea....hmmm, maybe we could just sic RFK, Jr  and Matt Damon on those evil Chinese state owned oil companies...that'll show 'em.

Pretty Good graphic from the WaPo---who knew?

BUT, I digress.  As a response to the rise of Chinese maritime power, our fearless fundraiser-in-chief and insurance salesman is devising the so-called "rebalance to Asia" and America's new "Air-Sea Battle" concept (ASB) meant to counter China's increasingly capable navy and Air Force and ensuring that the US still remains the preeminent power in Asia, the current Apple Dumpling Gang of fools notwithstanding.

This is a broad topic that will be explored in several posts during the coming year.  WHY, you ask?  Because---like many security and strategy issues talked about today, it's not new.  

Yup, I said it...the issues facing the USAF/USN today in the Pacific have been faced in the past...funny how that works...ahhh, history, I love you so.  

I speak of two specific instances--the pre-WWII planning done by the Navy as part of the War Plan Orange process and the 1970s-1980s challenge from the Soviet Navy that created Reagan's "Maritime Strategy."  (Oh, how I miss him so.)

Here are some of the better articles The Diplomat has had on the issues faced by the USN/USAF today:

The Air-Sea Battle Debate Heats Up

Is Air-Sea Battle Irrelevant?

Air-Sea Battle: A Dangerous Way to Deal with China

Is AirSea Battle Obsolete?

AND, there are many good articles and papers on the whole ASB concept:

Air Sea Battle for Dummies

Official DoD Paper

<Pretty much the genesis of the whole thing!>   AirSea Battle: A Point-of-Departure Operational Concept  

But as I read these articles, it doesn't seem like there's anything new ---my favorite new saying certainly seems to apply-"Been there, done that, got the T-shirt; everything else is just re-runs."

Of course, the military of the 1930s and 1940s were actually on the rise as America began to stir to meet an existential threat; with the current crop of corrupt pacifists if office, the US military faces an additional challenge as it is hacked away to pay for Obamacare and unfunded mandates.

But from a historical perspective, it is worth exploring how the Navy of old met this challenge--fighting across great spaces of ocean against a hostile and capable foe to defeat their navy, bomb their homeland, and win a war.