It doesn’t get much more blatant than this, does it?
China, who’ve long been the belligerent bullies of the global community, are now taking aim, almost literally, at US military ships in an exercise that is equal parts disturbing and desperate.
The Chinese military has built targets in the shape of an American aircraft carrier and other U.S. warships in the Taklamakan desert as part of a new target range complex, according to photos provided to USNI News by satellite imagery company Maxar.Advertisement - story continues below
The full-scale outline of a U.S. carrier and at least two Arleigh Burke-class destroyers are part of the target range that has been built in the Ruoqiang region in central China. The site is near a former target range China used to test early versions of its so-called carrier killer DF-21D anti-ship ballistic missiles, according to press reports in 2013.
And that’s not all:
There are two more target areas representing an aircraft carrier that do not have the metaling, but are distinguishable as carriers due to their outline. But other warship targets appear to be more elaborate. There are numerous upright poles positioned on them, possibly for instrumentation, according to the imagery. Alternatively these may be used for radar reflectors to simulate the superstructure of the vessel.
Beijing has spent an inordinate amount of time posturing in recent months, particularly in ways designed to provoke the United States.
The timing of these actions appears related to China’s seemingly inevitable invasion of Taiwan, a sovereign nation that Beijing has refused to recognize as anything other than a lost territory belonging to China.