In October, LTC (US Army) Jan K. Gleiman and Harry White wrote a very interesting article about land based anti-ship missiles. In this article, they argue that the growing capability of China’s land-based anti-ship missile systems is forcing the United States and Australia to rethink their Pacific strategy. That impact in mind, the question came up, if the US and Australia should develop that kind of weapon, too. According to Gleiman and White, “[t]he three strongest arguments for land-based systems can be categorised as lower escalation risk, strategic flexibility, and mitigation of platform vulnerability”.
In episode 61 of Sea Control Natalie Sambhi interviews both authors. They discuss the raised question in the article, the impact on the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty, and whether Australian strategic culture is ready for this capability. Lastly, having been a visiting fellow embedded in ASPI for two months, LTC Gleiman shares his first impressions of the Australian strategic culture and the differences between the ability for the Australian military to participate in public commentary when compared to their American counterparts.
Glossary for landlubbers
- Sea Denial: the ability to deny or prevent an adversary from operating in an area of the sea (possible with land based systems).
- Sea Control: the ability to operate freely in a maritime area while preventing adversaries from doing the same (requires sea denial capabilities, but not possible with land based systems alone).
- Jan K. Gleiman, and Harry White, “Time to Start Thinking about Land-Based Anti-Ship Missiles“, The Strategist, 16.10.2014.
- Robert Haddick, “China’s Most Dangerous Missile (So Far)“, War on the Rocks, 02.07.2014.
Listen to episode #61 immediately
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The Center for International Maritime Security (CIMSEC) is a non-profit, non-partisan think tank. It was formed in 2012 to bring together forward-thinkers from a variety of fields to examine the capabilities, threats, hotspots, and opportunities for security in the maritime domain. Check out the NextWar blog to join the discussion. CIMSEC encourages a diversity of views and is currently accepting membership applications here.