How The War Was Won: Air-Sea Power And Allied V...
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With the fall of Wuhan/Hubei province to the Japanese, the wartime capital of China had been pushed back to Chongqing, where an all-air war campaign against targets in Sichuan province between the CAF and the IJAAF/IJNAF would rage for years in a cat and mouse game under the codenames "Operation 100", "101" and "102" IJA/IJN "joint-strike force" terror-bombing campaigns. Despite the general obsolescence of the Chinese fighter aircraft against the new Japanese Schnellbombers, the CAF improvised, continuing to inflict casualties and losses against the Japanese raiders, culminating with the well-timed deployment of experimental air-burst bombs launched against the massive heavy bomber formations in August 1940, and climaxing with the introduction of the most advanced fighter aircraft of the time: the Mitsubishi A6M "Zero", which gained almost complete air-supremacy with its unheard-of performance against the Chinese Air Force the following month, and would incredibly remain largely unheard-of almost a year and a half later when the allied air powers faced the scourge of the Zero fighter as the Imperial Japanese war machine expanded into the Pacific with the attack on Pearl Harbor.
The debate on where the line falls between military-strategic synergies and trade-offs is an important one. But it should not overlook a broader point, namely that changes in the balance of power in Europe or East Asia are likely to have a pervasive effect, even if indirectly, on the other region. This is because the alliance and deterrence architectures that underpin security in each region hinge ultimately on U.S. and allied dominance at sea and over the other global commons and because preserving such dominance requires maintaining favorable balances of power in both regions. If the balance of power is upended in either region, U.S. and allied dominance at sea would be at peril, which would eventually endanger security in the other region. To grasp the importance of such links, U.S. and allied dominance at sea should be understood as the connecting tissue between the Euro-Atlantic and Indo-Pacific deterrence and alliance architectures.
The upending of the regional balance of power in either Europe or East Asia would inevitably draw the United States to strengthen its posture therein, thus limiting its strategic bandwidth in the other region. If preserving a balance of power in Europe and East Asia remains a core U.S. and allied geostrategic objective, and if it continues to hinge mostly on U.S. military power, the security and deterrence architecture of these two regions will remain intertwined. Sino-Russian cooperation further compounds this fact. Deterrence and U.S. alliances in Europe and East Asia should therefore be thought of from an inter-theater perspective. 59ce067264