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Old January 26th, 2018, 02:11 AM   #1
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Who would win in a war between the US and China?

Not now but 5 years into the future, let us say that Japan sides with the US but other countries stay neutral due to trade ties with China, what if the war drags on and both sides mobilize their reserves and civilian industrial capacity tow because of fear of looking weak after the initial clashes or the initial clashes end up being less than a total victory for either side?
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Old January 26th, 2018, 04:25 AM   #2
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I think this should be in speculative history

Other than that: nobody

Any conflict aiming for a total victory would result in an exchange of nuclear weapons.
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Old January 26th, 2018, 05:52 AM   #3
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Depends on what is being fought over. If China invades Taiwan and we fight for an independent Taiwan, that could be a tough one for us.

If it's war over the Spratley Islands, that would be a little more difficult for China as the Spratleys might be a little beyond their power projection capabilities, at least today. In five years, who knows?

If the US defaults on its national debt and China goes to war to collect all of the money we owe them... I can see China seizing all of the assets of American companies in China and it might be difficult for the US to get them back. China embargoes all trade with the US. We need China more than China needs us...
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Old January 26th, 2018, 06:06 AM   #4

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I'd bet on the country with the best generals.
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Old January 26th, 2018, 06:25 AM   #5
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Whoever launched nukes first.
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Old January 26th, 2018, 08:35 AM   #6

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Originally Posted by Chlodio View Post
. . . We need China more than China needs us...
I'm pretty sure that's not true today and will be less true in the near future, but we're getting current events here.
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Old January 26th, 2018, 12:23 PM   #7
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Neither would be able to conquer the other and no one wins a nuclear exchange. A conventional war would likely have no clear winner. The US at present has naval and air superiority but China is moving toward parity. So "victory" would depend on who gained their specific objectives over the other.

The Korean War was a case where the US and China effectively went to war. China retook North Korea which had been completely overrun by US forces. The US prevented the the retaking of South Korea which had been mostly overrun by North Korea.

Last edited by stevev; January 26th, 2018 at 12:33 PM.
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Old January 26th, 2018, 01:25 PM   #8
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Taking nukes off the table the winner would be whoever wasn't invading.
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Old January 26th, 2018, 02:33 PM   #9

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Well the USA obviously.

But both countries would employ completely different strategies. Heck half of the war would actually be trying to keep the other guy from starting the war. Deterrence and political pressure would be the name of that game (maybe MAD).
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Old January 26th, 2018, 02:44 PM   #10

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I don't see other countries remaining neutral in this. It would come down to what other countries ended up doing. Primarily Russia. If the Russians would back up China, then there would be way too much land to take over, even if Britain, France and Israel went on the side of the US. However, if the Americans convinced Russia to side with the west, then China would be finished. They would have the American navy pounding them on the east, Britain, Israel and France to the west, and the Russians to the north. China would only be able to rely on North Korea, but that wouldn't help much when facing war on 3 fronts. It could end up being the boxer war all over again. Of course, if it went nuclear, then we would all die and that would be the end of it.

Last edited by Jake10; January 26th, 2018 at 02:47 PM.
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