Want China Times
By: Staff Reporter
The claim made recently in Chinese media outlets that the People’s Liberation Army can
monitor the movement of US submarines as far away as Guam is unrealistic, says Colonel Wang Chih-peng, a reserve officer in Taiwan’s navy.
China began the development of its underwater listening network in 1996 under the codename Program 863, according to the Beijing-based Sina Military Network. The article made the claims that various underwater listening devices connected by undersea cables enable the PLA Navy to monitor the activities of submarines at distances of more than 15,000 kilometers. Monitoring operations can be enhanced in the future with the use of unmanned underwater vehicles, warships and the Y-8 GX8 Electronic Intelligence aircraft, the report claimed.
Colonel Wang said however that an underwater listening device cannot be longer than the length of an arm and is only capable of monitoring submarine activities withing a distance of 10 kilometers. Unlike the United States with its allies and security partners surrounding the Chinese coast, China is not able to establish such a massive underwater network anywhere close to Guam since it does not control any land in the Western Pacific. [FULL STORY]