We ‘Fought’ a War in the South China Sea. The Results are Disturbing.

    Kyle Mizokami

    Security,

    America and China battle it out in a simulation. We have the results. 

    Moving at more than 40 knots, Fort Worth and Freedom begin closing the gap.Qinzhou and Changde both turn to face Fort Worth. Apparently they want to fight. I’ll oblige them. Both LCSs are under orders to engage the enemy as soon as they come close enough to fire their Griffin surface-to-surface missiles. Between the two of them, they have 30 Griffins. At four miles, Fort Worth opens up on Qinzhou with her 57-millimeter gun.Qinzhou immediately returns fire with her 76-millimeter gun, lightly damaging Fort Worth. Unfortunately, Fort Worth’s Rolling Airframe missile launcher is destroyed early on, meaning she is out of active anti-missile defenses.

    (This first appeared in 2013)

    The year is 2016, and two of the U.S. Navy’s latest ships are backing a key ally in the tinderbox of the South China Sea. They’re facing down the Chinese navy halfway across the world with the latest weapons and systems the United States can get its hands on. But is it enough?

    For more than a hundred years, the U.S. Navy has been using naval wargames to test ships, tactics and strategy. Today, thanks to the ability of computers to process massive amounts of data, sharply accurate, procedural “hard” simulations are possible.

    One such sim is Command: Modern Naval/Air Operations, a new game that attempts to model modern sea and air warfare as closely as a game for civilians can.

    Recommended: The Real Reason China Has Built a Massive Military 

    Command is particularly suited for attempting a high-fidelity simulation of modern naval combat — it included an admiral and staff from the U.S. Naval War College in the game’s beta testing — and we’re going to take a page from the Navy and put America’s latest fighting ship to the test.

    The result isn’t good — and a harrowing lesson to be cautious about how we equip the U.S. military.

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