We Must Be Ready for War With China
Beijing is building its military, and so should we
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 23, 2010 1:51 PM CDT
Updated Aug 28, 2010 7:00 PM CDT
China's third-generation fighter planes of the Chengdu Military Zone take part in a training mission in this photo from the state-run Xinhua News Agency.   (AP Photo/Xinhua, Liu Yinghua)

(Newser) – China has been busily ramping up its military, working on strategies specifically designed to keep America at bay in Asia if necessary, according to a recent Pentagon report. Yet here in the US, the defense establishment is discussing cutting its budget, and shifting more and more resources to counter-terrorism and counter-insurgency efforts, complains Peter Brookes of the New York Post. “Some increasingly worry about our ability to fight a big-power war,” he writes. “From the Pentagon report, it's clear we have competition.”

The report credits China with “the most active land-based ballistic- and cruise-missile program in the world,” and says Beijing is intent on building its own aircraft carrier by 2010. “This muscling-up isn’t likely to end soon,” Brookes writes. The US has 11 aircraft carriers, but mobilizing them is a slow process. Many of our fighter planes are older than their pilots, and our edge in defensive tech is slipping. Yes, counter-terrorism is important, “but we need to be ready for possible fights to come.”