International Military News: China’s New Type 93 Attack Sub


A new image emerged on 21 June providing confirmation of the latest variant of the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s (PLAN’s) Type 093 nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSN).

Published on Chinese online forums, the picture shows that the new Shang-class submarine appears to have a new ‘bump’ shape after the sail that may be intended to help dissipate root vortices that emerge from the base of the sail, which can help reduce drag and noise.

An article published that same day on claims the boat also employs a vertical launch version of the YJ-18 anti-ship cruise missile and a naval version of the DF-10 long-range land-attack cruise missile. The new photograph, however, does not provide confirmation that the ‘bump’ also houses vertical-launch cruise missiles.

It is unclear, however, where exactly this boat lies in the PLAN’s Shang-class programme. A 2016 Pentagon report to the US Congress on China-related military and security developments stated a few months ago that the East Asia country was continuing to improve its SSN force and that four additional Shang-class SSN would eventually join the two already in service.

“The Shang SSN will replace the ageing Han-class SSN (Type 091). These improved Shang SSNs feature a vertical launch system and may be able to fire the YJ-18 advanced anti-ship cruise missile (ASCM),” the paper stated.

It has been reported for some time that the third and subsequent three boats are stretched versions of the two original Shang-class boats: possibly in an attempt to accommodate a Dry Dock Shelter as appears to be the case in the recently released image. While authenticity cannot be guaranteed, this may be the third boat. These are known as Type 093A.

However, there has also been firm reporting that the Chinese have been developing a nuclear-powered cruise missile submarine (SSGN), known in many circles as Type 093G.

Read the Original Article at Janes 360

Modern War: Incendiary Munitions Appearing On Russian Jets In Syria

Earlier this week analysts found that RT, a government-funded Russian media company, edited out footage that initially showed Russian jets in Syria armed with incendiary munitions. The original clip was restored after RT said it had deleted the footage out of concerns for the pilot’s safety.

The use of incendiary weapons in Syria is nothing new — they’ve been dropped by Syrian government forces, albeit intermittently, since 2012. However, the munitions’ recent appearance, namely a pair of RBK-500 ZAB-2.5SM bombs strapped to the bottom of a Russian Su-34, comes among increasing reports of their use, namely around the besieged city of Aleppo.

Russia is party to a United Nations protocol that bans the use of air-dropped incendiary munitions onto areas that have concentrations of civilians; the Syrian government, however, is not.

According to N.R. Jenzen-Jones, director of the company Armament Research Services, the last time incendiary munitions were used in large concentrations, of the likes seen since the beginning of June, was in early 2013, indicating that the Syrian government has either been resupplied or is relying on the Russians to drop their own. Incendiary bombs, however, are somewhat trivial compared to the casualties caused by other weapons used in the conflict such as barrel bombs, improvised explosive devices and rifle fire.

Recent clips posted to YouTube show a number of strikes in the suburbs of Aleppo, where Syrian government forces have fought for months in an attempt to take the city from opposition forces. The footage, taken mostly at night, shows streaks of what looks like fireworks blossoming downward and erupting into flames on the ground. According to Mary Wareham, the arms advocacy director at Human Rights Watch, the type of incendiary munitions seen most frequently in Syria appear to be thermite-based weapons, and are often misidentified as napalm and white phosphorus. Similar in purpose, napalm and white phosphorus have checkered pasts that began with their use by the United States during the Vietnam War.

Read the Remainder at Washington Post