China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is looking to up the ante on electronic warfare by mating EW and computer networks in a whole new way to launch cyber-attacks, the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) says in a recently released report. “The PLA believes that EW is one of the best ways to counter stronger military powers, CSBA notes in its report, “Reinforcing the Front Line U.S. Defense Strategy and The Rise of China. In addition to developing a variety of dedicated EW platforms, CSBA says, the PLA “has embraced the concept of Integrated Network Electronic Warfare (INEW), which seeks to meld EW and computer network into a ‘hybrid capability.’” CSBA says, “INEW promises to make network warfare relevant to areas traditionally dominated by electronic warfare by enabling network attacks to ‘bridge the air-gap’ and enter relatively unprotected, isolated battlefield networks.”
Katherine Blakeley, a defense analyst at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, said Republicans are likely to try to attach a defense supplemental to the broader fiscal 2017 appropriations bill, which needs to be passed by April 28 to avoid a federal government shutdown. That move would put maximum pressure on reluctant lawmakers in both parties to support additional funding for the military. “The more leverage you can put on any one pivot point,” she said, “the greater the likelihood it will come through by hook or by crook.”
McCain praised the conclusion of both the CSBA and MITRE studies that the Navy should halt procurement of Littoral Combat Ships and future frigates as soon as possible, and instead move toward a more powerful small surface combatant design. McCain has been a frequent critic of the LCS program. McCain was particularly impressed by the "comprehensiveness" of the CSBA study, according to his statement. He said CSBA's study should be the "starting point for the new administration's review of naval forces." President Trump campaigned on a goal of building the Navy from its current size of about 270 ships up to 350 vessels. "It proposes necessary new strategic, operational, basing, and force structure recommendations that deserve immediate consideration by Navy leaders," McCain said. The CSBA study makes a host of recommendations, perhaps most notably moving away from the Navy's current basing strategy and instead creating a forward deployed set of "deterrence forces" to be augmented with a "maneuver force" in the event of a crisis.
Another alternative structure, developed by Bryan Clark at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, proposes a fleet architecture “to provide the United States an advantage in great power competition with China and Russia or against capable and strategically located regional powers such as Iran.”…
The root of the CSBA study was based on how the U.S. would face armed conflict with China or Russia, which are “probably going to be the defining characteristics of the Navy of the future,” lead author Bryan Clark told USNI News on Friday. The study plays up the speed to which expeditionary forces can arrive in conflict areas and spreads out the Navy’s offensive power away from a few heavily armed carrier strike groups. The plan includes light carriers paired with amphibious ready groups and full-sized air defense-capable multi-mission frigates and introduces a new small anti-ship guided-missile corvette to give the enemy more targets to handle in a major conflict. For example, the corvette, which could resemble the small Visby-class used in the Swedish Navy, would field a limited air defense capability like the Enhanced SeaSparrow Missile and four to eight anti-ship missiles.
With advanced targeting, missiles and other advanced tools at the disposal of rising and resurging adversaries, the U.S. Navy must rethink the way it structures its carrier fleet with an emphasis on legacy full-scale aircraft carriers and a new breed of smaller carriers. With advanced targeting, missiles and other advanced tools at the disposal of rising and resurging adversaries, the U.S. Navy must rethink the way it structures its carrier fleet with an emphasis on legacy full-scale aircraft carriers and a new breed of smaller carriers, the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessment (CSBA) says in a recent report.