美国对华拒止性威慑战略论析
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An Analysis of the United States’ Deterrence by Denial Strategy Against China

美国对华拒止性威慑战略论析

Researchers at the PLA’s National University of Defense Technology examine the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China since 2017, tracing developments across the Trump and Biden administrations and assessing likely impacts on China’s efforts to shape its regional security environment. The authors argue that while these strategies have “achieved some of the expected effects,” they will be constrained abroad by the security interests of regional U.S. partners and allies and domestically through disagreement among U.S. political parties and U.S. military branches about how to approach denial capability building.

Emphasis added throughout text by editors.


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Deterrence by denial is an important branch of deterrence theory, and deterrence by denial strategy is a military strategy guided by the theory of deterrence by denial. The United States’ deterrence by denial strategy began in the Cold War and led to large-scale civil defense construction and ballistic missile defense technology R&D during the Cold War. After the turn of the 21st century, the issues of missile defense and the empowerment of conventional weapons by emerging technologies have played an ever-expanding role in the security interactions of nuclear powers.1 U.S. deterrence policy also put greater emphasis on the importance of deterrence by denial methods, as represented by missile defense systems and new precision strike weapons.

拒止性威慑是威慑理论的重要分支,拒止性威慑战略则是拒止性威慑理论指导下的军事战略。美国的拒止性威慑战略始自冷战,并牵引了冷战时期的大规模民防建设和弹道导弹防御技术研发。进入21世纪,导弹防御及新兴技术赋能常规武器议题在核大国安全互动中发挥的作用不断扩大。美国的威慑政策也更加突出以导弹防御系统和新型精确打击武器为代表的拒止性威慑手段的重要性。

The “Rebalancing Toward Asia-Pacific” strategy launched by the Obama administration announced a change in the U.S.’s judgment as to the source of threats. Since then, there have been growing calls from within the United States to focus on the growth of Chinese military power and expand the application scope of deterrence by denial. After Trump took office, the “pessimists” in the United States who believed that China was about to gain a regional military dominance and squeeze the U.S. military out of the Western Pacific region gradually became the mainstream. They proposed that the U.S. military strategy and operational concepts should be adjusted to deny China the ability to operate basically without restrictions in the Western Pacific region.2 The Trump administration’s U.S. Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific also states that the United States will primarily deny China’s continued air and maritime superiority within the first island chain and dominate all areas outside the first island chain.3 After Biden took office, the role of military elements in the U.S. national security strategy continued to increase. Judging from the trends in U.S. military adjustments, the Biden administration’s strategy of deterrence by denial against China places more emphasis on the deployment of new forces and the coordinated denial among allies. Deterrence by denial against China has become a key element in the U.S. Indo-Pacific strategy.4 The U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China has already deviated from the traditional model of deterrence by denial strategy and is evolving towards the integration of offense and defense. This is not only the result of the development of new military technology, but also the only way for the United States to consistently seek absolute security after the Cold War.

奥巴马政府推出的“亚太再平衡”战略宣告了美国对威胁源判断的变化。此后,美国国内关于聚焦中国军力提升、扩展拒止性威慑应用范围的呼声不断高涨。特朗普上台后,美国国内认为中国即将取得区域军事优势地位,并将美军挤出西太平洋地区(以下简称“西太地区”)的“悲观派”逐渐占据主流。他们提出,应将美国的军事战略和作战概念调整为拒止中国在西太地区几乎不受限制地行动的能力。特朗普政府的《美国印太战略框架》也指出,美国将主要拒止中国在第一岛链内的持续空中和海上优势,并主导第一岛链外的所有领域。拜登上台后,军事因素在美国国家安全战略中的作用不断加大。从美军调整动向看,拜登政府的对华拒止性威慑战略更加突出新质力量部署和盟友协同拒止。在美国的印太战略中,对中国实施拒止性威慑已经成为关键内容。美国对华拒止性威慑战略已经偏离了传统上以防为主的拒止性威慑模式,正朝着攻防一体的方向演进。这既是新军事技术发展的结果,也是冷战后美国一以贯之寻求绝对安全的必由之路。

I. The Meaning of Deterrence by Denial

—,拒止性威慑的内涵

Although the concept of “deterrence by denial” was proposed relatively recently, the effectiveness of denial as a deterrent has existed since ancient times. From the Hexamilion Wall, where the Peloponnesian Alliance tried to stop the Persian invasion, to the French Maginot Line on the eastern frontier, the deterrent capabilities of these military forces were mainly reflected in their denial effect.

“拒止性威慑”概念虽然较晚近才被提出,但威慑的拒止效用却古已有之。从伯罗奔尼撒联盟试图阻止波斯入侵的地峡长城,到法国在东部边境倾全国之力构筑的马奇诺防线,这些军事力量发挥的威慑能力主要体现在拒止效用上。

(i) Meaning and Features of Deterrence by Denial
(一)拒止性威慑的内涵与特征

In his 1961 book Deterrence and Defense, American deterrence theorist Glenn Snyder divided deterrence into deterrence by punishment and deterrence by denial according to the effective logic of deterrence.5 He pointed out that deterrence by punishment means that the deterring party shows the deterred party that if the deterred party takes actions that disrupt the status quo, the deterring party has both the ability and determination to inflict large-scale damage to the deterred party. To make punishment credible, the deterring party often threatens to retaliate against an adversary’s non-military targets at any cost, although the line between non-military and military targets is sometimes blurred. In the aviation age before the nuclear age, a country’s long-range bombing capability could sometimes serve as deterrence by punishment. In the nuclear age, the promise of deterrence by punishment is mainly achieved by the enormous destructive power of nuclear missiles, but conventional punitive capabilities such as massive numbers of long-range strike weapons can also sometimes play a role.6 Deterrence by denial refers to the use of conventional means to crush the offensive attempts of the deterred party, thereby making the potential aggressor lose confidence that it can achieve its goals. The deterring party seeks to maintain the status quo with the goals of strengthening defenses or threatening to precisely destroy an adversary’s offensive forces during wartime.7 In general, deterrence by punishment is more of a cost-calculated strategy, while denial deterrence is a strategy measured in terms of benefits.

美国威慑理论家格伦·斯奈德(Glenn Snyder)在1961年的著作《威慑与防御》中依据威慑的生效逻辑,将威慑分为惩罚性威慑(deterence by punishment)与拒止性威慑(deterence by denial)。他指出,惩罚性威慑是指威慑方向被威慑方表明,如若被威慑方采取破坏现状的行动,威慑方既有能力,也有决心对其实施大规模破坏。为了使惩罚可信,威慑方往往威胁不计成本地报复打击对手的非军事目标,尽管非军事和军事目标之间的界限有时是模糊的。核时代到来前,在航空时代,一国的远程轰炸能力有时可以起到惩罚性威慑的作用。而在核时代,惩罚性威慑的承诺主要借助导弹核武器的巨大破坏力来实现,常规惩罚能力如数量庞大的远程打击武器有时亦可发挥作用。拒止性威慑则是指用常规手段粉碎被威慑方的进攻性企图,从而使潜在的侵略者丧失能够实现其目标的信心。威慑方以加强防御或威胁在战时精确摧毁对手进攻力量为目标,力求维持现状。总的来看,惩罚性威慑是一种计较成本的战略,而拒止性威慑是一种衡量收益的战略。

Snyder’s interpretation of deterrence by denial has been accepted by most deterrence theorists and is still used today. Starting from Snyder’s classic definition along with the particularity of deterrence by denial strategy as a military strategy, we can obtain the following three features of deterrence by denial:

斯奈德对拒止性威慑的解释得到了大多数威慑理论家的认可并沿用至今。从斯奈德的经典定义出发,并结合作为军事战略的拒止性威慑战略的特殊性,得出拒止性威慑的以下三点特征:

The first is the extensive range of methods for the use of power. In contrast to the strategic nuclear force that deterrence by punishment is more reliant on in the nuclear age, the forces required for deterrence by denial are broader. They include not only physical weapons traditionally used for defense and attack operations, but also combat operations methods used in intangible spaces, such as cyber weapons and electronic warfare weapons.8 The previous format of combat operations that was contact-type and relied on the use of weapons to kill enemies in order to seize territory has evolved into a non-contact type model that uses information technology to carry out combat operations in a range of different spaces. Therefore, in terms of forces, the United States’ deterrence by denial strategy relies more on various missile systems and information warfare systems. The frontier area where the United States carries out defense operations has also further expanded. There has been a shift from the focus on homeland defense during the Cold War to forward defense in front of the threat source, but this has not touched the “big rear” (大后方) targeted by deterrence by punishment forces.

一是运用力量手段的广泛性。区别于惩罚性威慑在核时代更加依赖的战略核力量,拒止性威慑需要的力量较为宽泛,既包括传统上用于防御和打击行动的实体兵器,也包括网络武器、电子战武器等应用于无形空间的作战手段。以前接触式、依靠兵器杀伤来争夺领土的作战形式,演变为非接触式、利用信息技术在多维空间作战的模式。因此,美国的拒止性威慑战略在力量层面更多依赖各类导弹系统和信息作战系统,美国开展防御行动的前沿地域也进一步扩展,从冷战时期注重本土防御转向在威胁源当面进行前置防御,但并未触及惩罚性威慑力量所瞄准的“大后方”。

The second is the real-time nature of threat actions. Deterrence is achieved through denial, not by threats of retaliation for status-breaking actions after the fact as in deterrence by punishment. Rather, the threat will directly deter, de-escalate, or delay offensive actions in near real-time. Therefore, a greater emphasis is placed on precision strike and damage-infliction capabilities. In order to achieve the goal of delaying an adversary on the battlefield, the deterring party must possess faster response capabilities or stronger defenses than for deterrence by punishment. After the deterring party demonstrates these capabilities to the deterred party, the deterred party will evaluate the possible obstacles and escalation options in its operation, and may abandon the operation. Deterrence by denial will be more credible if the deterring party had nuclear options available to it.

二是威胁行动的实时性。通过拒止来进行威慑,不是像惩罚性威慑那样威胁在行动后对打破现状行动进行报复,而是威胁将在接近实时的情况下直接阻止、降级抑或拖延进攻行动,因此更强调精准打击和毁伤能力。为了达成在战场上迟滞对手的目标,威慑方需要有比惩罚性威慑更快的反应能力或更强的防御能力。威慑方在向被威慑方展示这些能力后,被威慑方会对行动中可能出现的阻碍与升级选项做出评估,并有可能放弃行动。而在威慑方拥有可用的核选项的情况下,拒止性威慑将更为可信。

The third is the contest that occurs in the process of deterrence. Deterrence by denial has a greater reliance on conventional weapons. However, before the outbreak of a conventional war, when the deterring party credibly communicates its capabilities to win a conflict to the deterred party, this position of the deterring party is particularly contested by the deterred party. This is because the adversary may also hope to defeat the deterring party’s military by strengthening its own military-technical capabilities as soon as possible. The above situation certainly creates uncertainty about the outcome of deterrence by denial, but in the current era of systemic warfare, competition between two great powers centered on a single technology or single weapon is not enough to destabilize the deterrence. The deterring party needs to pay more attention to the new technological combinations of the deterred party and the new combat concepts it promotes. However, limited by the maturity of such technologies, it will take time for the deterred party to transform these factors into a threat to the effectiveness of deterrence by denial, and the deterring party will also seek to achieve a technological balance. Therefore, the fact that the process of deterrence by denial is contested does not necessarily have a fundamental impact on its effectiveness.

三是威慑过程中的受挑战性。拒止性威慑所依赖的更多是常规武器,而在常规战争爆发前,向被威慑方可信地传达打赢冲突的能力对威慑方而言尤其具有挑战性,因为对手可能也希望通过尽快加强自身军事技术能力来击败威慑方的军队。上述情况确实给拒止性威慑的结果带来了不确定性,但在当前的体系战争时代,两个强国围绕单项技术或单个武器的竞争并不足以撼动威慑的稳定性。被威慑方的新技术组合及其推动的新型作战理念才是威慑方更需要注意的,而受限于技术成熟度,其转化成对拒止性威慑有效性的威胁还需时日,且威慑方也会追求达成技术上的平衡。因此,拒止性威慑过程中的受挑战性并不必然对其有效性带来根本性影响。

(ii) Analysis of the Relationship Between Deterrence by Denial and Deterrence by Punishment
(二)拒止性威慑与惩罚性威慑的关系辨析

Regarding the difference between deterrence by denial and deterrence by punishment, in addition to the differences in the methods and forces used for deterrence mentioned above, the two are also different in terms of practical effects, escalation issues, and limitations.

关于拒止性威慑与惩罚性威慑的区别,除了上文提到的在实现威慑的方式和威慑力量上存在差异,二者在实践效果、升级问题、所受限制上也都有所不同。

First, in terms of the practical effects of the two deterrence models, most case studies agree that deterrence by denial is more effective than deterrence by punishment. Paul Huth analyzed 58 deterrence cases from 1885 to 1984 and found that deterrence by denial had a higher chance of success and was more dependable than deterrence by punishment.9 There are two main reasons for this: First, in practice, the credibility of the deterring party’s commitment to inflict punishment has always been questioned. Second, the signals sent by deterrence by denial are very clear, and most deterred parties choose to re-evaluate their cost-benefit calculations after receiving such signals. Through comparative research, Robert Pape found that deterrence by denial as a military strategy is more coercive than deterrence by punishment, but it also requires the deterring party to possess sufficient deterrence capabilities.10 Alex Wilner’s analysis of the most recent practices of deterrence by denial showed that, at the level of Western grand strategy, deterrence by denial has had a far greater influence than is generally believed.11 In practice, U.S. policy in the Cold War was never one of simple deterrence by punishment.12 After the United States and the Soviet Union achieved an approximate nuclear balance in the late 1960s, they quickly shifted the field of competition to strategic defense. Both countries had an incentive to develop effective defensive methods to mitigate the damage inflicted by an opponent’s nuclear strike. It is only that, in practice, the development of strategic defense methods by both sides is constrained by technical complexity. Based on this, the United States and the Soviet Union made mutual compromises for a period of time and signed the ABM Treaty to maintain strategic stability.

首先,在两种威慑模式的实践效果方面,大部分案例研究都认同拒止性威慑比惩罚性威慑更有效。保罗·胡思(Paul Huth)通过分析1885年到1984年的58个威慑案例发现,拒止性威慑的成功几率更高,其效果也要比惩罚性威慑更可靠。主要原因有二:一是在实践中,威慑方惩罚承诺的可信度始终存疑;二是拒止性威慑所传递的信号是十分清晰的,大部分被威慑方都会在收到此类信号后选择重新进行“成本—效益”评估。罗伯特·佩普(Robert Pape)通过对比研究发现,作为军事战略的拒止性威慑比惩罚性威慑更具强制性,但这也需要威慑方拥有足够的拒止能力。亚历克斯·威尔纳(Alex Wilner)对最新的拒止性威慑实践进行分析后认为,在西方大战略层面,拒止性威慑的影响远比人们普遍认为的要大。从实践看,美国在冷战中的政策也从未完全遵循过简单的惩罚性威慑。美苏在20世纪60年代后期大致形成核均势后就迅速将竞争领域转向了战略防御,两国都有动力发展有效的防御手段减轻对手核打击带来的损害。只是在实践中,双方战略防御手段的发展受到了技术复杂性的制约。基于此,美苏在一段时间内相互妥协并签署了《反导条约》以维持战略稳定。

Second, the two forms of deterrence are also very different when it comes to dealing with the problem of escalation. Escalation is divided into horizontal escalation and vertical escalation. The former refers to the expansion of a conflict geographically or in terms of interests involved. The latter refers to a country’s determination to use strategic strike capabilities to try to reverse an unfavorable situation.13 Deterrence by denial seeks to avoid vertical escalation, but may lead to horizontal escalation. Deterrence by punishment obviously involves the direct risk of vertical escalation. In practice, even if the deterred party finds a vulnerable area in the deterring party’s denial forces and formulates a targeted action plan, the conflict will not rapidly escalate vertically, and the deterring party can choose to escalate horizontally to effectively deal with the action of the deterred party. Although the deterred party can also choose a strategy of limited aims and quickly draw back after obtaining moderate benefits to avoid escalation, this strategy can easily lead the attacker into a war of attrition against it and rarely succeeds in practice.14

其次,在对待冲突升级的问题上,两种威慑形式的差别也很大。升级分为水平升级和垂直升级,前者是指在地理上或所涉及的利益方面扩大冲突,后者是指一国决心使用战略打击能力来试图扭转不利局面。拒止性威慑力求避免垂直升级,但有可能引发水平升级;而惩罚性威慑明显会带来直接的垂直升级风险。在实践中,即使被威慑方找到威慑方拒止力量的脆弱环节并拟定针对性的行动计划,冲突也不会迅速地垂直升级,威慑方可以选择水平升级来有效应对。尽管被威慑方还可以选择有限目标战略,在取得适度利益后及时收手,避免升级,但该战略实则很容易使进攻方陷入对其不利的消耗战,在实践中极少能够成功。

Finally, nuclear powers have a relatively deep awareness of deterrence by punishment in their long-term interactions, and there is already a great deal of shared understanding and even norms. The development of punitive capacity will also be subject to political constraints, but the same is not true of deterrence by denial, which is more influenced by a country’s strategic goals. After assessing the strengths of both parties, the deterring party can clearly assess its own strengths and weaknesses. If the strategic goal of the deterring party is to pursue advantages, it will use deterrence by denial as an effective engine for shaping strong military capabilities because deterrence by denial is less politically constrained than deterrence by punishment.

最后,核大国在长期互动中对惩罚性威慑的认识较为深刻,已存在大量共有知识乃至规范,在惩罚能力发展上也会受到政治约束,但拒止性威慑则不尽然,拒止性威慑受一国战略目标的影响更大。威慑方在评估双方实力后可以较为清楚地意识到自己的优劣所在,如果威慑方的战略目标是追求优势,由于拒止性威慑受到的政治限制较惩罚性威慑更少,它会将拒止性威慑作为塑造强势军事能力的有效牵引。

Although denial and punishment achieve their effects through different mechanisms, they are interconnected in practice. Judging from the deterrence practices of the United States after World War II, the United States does not apply a denial strategy alone, but tends to combine denial and punishment methods. This is largely due to the inadequacy of pure deterrence by denial. On the one hand, similar to the dilemma faced in nuclear deterrence, the risk calculation used in deterrence by denial is still very vague because it is difficult to accurately gauge the adversary’s intentions. The more uncertain the deterring party is about an adversary’s motivations and the quality of its own defenses, the more difficult it will be to adjust its military strategy to better deter the adversary. On the other hand, the new military revolution has brought many new changes to deterrence by denial, and asymmetric strike advantages can already be achieved under certain conditions.15 In order to ensure the effectiveness of deterrence by denial, if faced with a major power whose strategic power is increasing or even drawing even in some capabilities, the deterring party will inevitably develop forces with asymmetric or even new-generation advantages. However, the technical risks and (time, economic, and political) costs of developing such capabilities are subject to significant uncertainty. Therefore, in practice, the United States will use punitive measures to shift part of the pressure on its maintenance of effective deterrence, but this cannot solve the series of problems brought about by deterrence by denial.

虽然拒止和惩罚通过不同的机制发挥作用,但在实践中是相互联系的。从二战后美国的威慑实践看,美国不会单独应用拒止策略,而是倾向于将拒止与惩罚手段相结合。这主要是因为纯粹的拒止性威慑存在不足。一方面,与核威慑所面临的困境类似,由于对手的意图难以准确把握,拒止性威慑的风险计算仍然十分模糊。威慑方对对手的动机和自身防御质量的认知越不确定,如何调整军事战略以更好地威慑对手就越难做到。另一方面,新军事革命给拒止性威慑带来了诸多新变化,非对称打击优势在某些条件下已经可以实现。如果面对的是战略力量日趋上升甚至在某些能力上日益对等的大国,为了确保拒止性威慑的有效,威慑方必然会开发具有非对称甚至是断代性优势的武力,而开发这种能力的技术风险与(时间、经济和政治)成本都存在较大的不确定性。因此,在实践中,美国会借助惩罚手段转移维持有效威慑的部分压力,但这并不能解决拒止性威慑带来的一系列问题。

(iii) Elements of Forces and Methods for Achieving Deterrence by Denial
(三)拒止性威慑的力量要素与实现方式

According to the definition given above, denial is the capability of the deterring party to convince the deterred party that the deterring party has the ability to prevent it from obtaining potential benefits. The best manifestation of this capability is not directly threatening to inflict massive costs on the deterred party, but altering the deterred party’s intentions by changing its potential benefits. Accordingly, there are two ways to achieve deterrence by denial.

依据上文的定义,拒止是为了使被威慑方相信威慑方有阻止其获得潜在收益的能力,这种能力的最好表现并非直接威胁给被威慑方制造巨大的成本,而是通过改变潜在收益来改变被威慑方的意图。据此,拒止性威慑的实现方式有以下两种。

The first is to threaten to greatly reduce or even eliminate the expected effect of the opponent’s attack through various passive defense measures. Passive defense measures are mainly used to strengthen the invulnerability of one’s own military capabilities and to preserve effective forces as far as possible. Medieval castles and the trenches during World War I were passive defense measures. However, in the age of informatized warfare, the battlefield support roles of cyber capabilities and space assets have become increasingly prominent. In addition to the traditional strengthening of the construction of fixed defense facilities and protecting critical infrastructure, passive defense measures also include elements such as increasing the redundancy of the national command and control system and enhancing the resilience of cyber capabilities and space assets. The importance of these passive defense measures in the security and military strategies of major powers is increasing. It must be noted that although the above concepts or methods focus on defense, they also play an important supporting role in the offensive missions of great powers and are an indispensable and important part of deterrence by denial strategies.

一是威胁通过各类被动防御措施极大地降低甚至消除对手进攻取得的预期效果。被动防御措施主要用来加强自身军事能力的抗毁伤性,尽最大可能保存有生力量。中世纪的城堡、一战时期的堑壕等都属于被动防御措施,而在信息化战争时代,网络能力和太空资产的战场支持作用日益突出。被动防御措施除了囊括传统上的加强固定防御设施建设、保护关键基础设施等,也涵盖了增加本国指挥和控制系统冗余性、增强网络能力和太空资产的弹性等要素。这些被动防御措施在主要大国的安全战略和军事战略中的重要性正不断上升。需要注意的是,尽管上述概念或手段偏重防御,但它们对大国的进攻性任务也起着重要的支持作用,是拒止性威慑战略不可或缺的重要组成部分。

The second is to threaten reciprocal counterattacks or even preemptive action when war is imminent in order to make the deterred party worry that their ultimate goal cannot be achieved so as to abandon the action. This approach puts more emphasis on the use of superior conventional combat capabilities to achieve deterrence by denial. It is determined by the range of the forces used for deterrence by denial and the challenges met in the deterrence process. Of course, in most cases, it is difficult for the deterring party to maintain this type of denial capability alone. Therefore, allies and partners with common deterrence goals become important partners of the deterring party. Given the real-time and contested nature of deterrence by denial, the deterring party must particularly guard against surprise attacks by the adversary. The deterred party will be attracted by the possibilities created by a sudden attack. This sort of move will allow them to demonstrate their strength to the deterring party and thereby reap the benefits.16 However, in informatized warfare, with the continuous proliferation and use of emerging technologies, especially precision-guided weapons, the possibility of preventing a deterred party from launching a surprise attack will greatly increase.17 Deterrence by denial will rely more on such weapons to increase its credibility. Moreover, if the deterring party has such a powerful conventional strike force and the adversary continues to provocatively challenge the deterring party’s previous commitments, the deterring party may also send some signals to threaten preemptive action, so as to achieve a deterrent effect.

二是威胁对等反击,甚至威胁在战争迫近的情况下抢先行动,以使被威慑方产生无法实现最终目标的担忧,进而放弃行动。这种手段更多强调的是利用有优势的常规作战能力来实现拒止性威慑,这是由拒止性威慑运用力量的广泛性和威慑过程中的受挑战性决定的。当然,在大多数情况下,这种拒止能力单靠威慑方一己之力是很难保持的。因此,有共同威慑目标的盟友和伙伴国会成为威慑方的重要合作对象。鉴于拒止性威慑的实时性和受挑战性,威慑方需特别防范的是对手的突然袭击。被威慑方会被突袭所创造的可能性所吸引,这种举措将使它们能够向威慑方展示实力,从而获得收益。但在信息化战争中,随着新兴技术特别是精确制导武器的持续扩散和使用,阻止被威慑方发动突袭的可能性会极大地升高。拒止性威慑将更多借助这类武器来提升可信度。而如果威慑方拥有了这样一支强大的常规打击力量,对手又不断挑衅威慑方先前的承诺,威慑方也可能会释放一些信号以威胁抢先一步行动,以此达到威慑效果。

The U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China reflects the two methods mentioned above in its components and system of forces. In both the conceptions of experts and scholars and the practices of the Trump and the Biden administrations, great importance is attached to the organic combination of offensive and defensive methods and the importance of system capabilities and joint operations is emphasized. Below, we will analyze the concepts and practices of the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China since 2017 and present the constraints in the implementation of this strategy and its impact on China.

美国对华拒止性威慑战略在组成要素和力量体系上都体现了上述两种方式。无论是专家学者的构想,还是特朗普政府和拜登政府的实践,都高度重视攻防手段的有机结合,强调体系能力和联合作战的重要性。下文分析2017年以来美国对华拒止性威慑战略的构想与实践,梳理战略实施过程中的制约因素及对中国的影响。

II. Concepts and Practices of the U.S. Strategy of Deterrence by Denial Against China

二,美国对华拒止性威慑战略的构想与实践

After the “Rebalancing Toward Asia-Pacific” strategy was introduced, scholars in the U.S. strategic community began to discuss the feasibility of deterrence by punishment or denial with respect to China. Based on the theoretical and practical advantages of the deterrence by denial strategy, many people prefer to give priority to the use of deterrence by denial against China. Most of these proposals deviate from the defense-centered deterrence by denial model by encouraging the United States and its allies to develop comprehensive denial capabilities ranging from passive defense to integrated offense and defense.

“亚太再平衡”战略出台后,美国战略界的学者就开始讨论对华实施惩罚或拒止性威慑的可行性。基于拒止性威慑战略在理论和实践中的优势,诸多观点目前更倾向于将拒止手段列为对华威慑的优先事项。这些建议大多偏离了以防御为主的拒止性威慑模式,鼓励美国和盟友发展从被动防御到攻防一体的全面拒止能力。

(i) Recommendations of the U.S. Strategic and Security Research Community on Deterrence by Denial Strategies for China
(一)美国战略与安全研究界关于对华拒止性威慑战略的建议

Experts and scholars who support the strategy of deterrence by denial against China believe that denial emphasizes the value of a decentralized and flexible regional military force. During the Obama administration, the representative figure who supported deterrence by denial against China was Andrew S. Erickson of the U.S. Naval War College. He believed that in the face of future Chinese control of the disputed islands, the United States does not necessarily have to defeat China, but only prevent China from achieving its goals. To this end, the U.S. military should develop direct defense and area denial capabilities.18 However, at that time, the U.S. military in the Western Pacific region possessed an advantage over China and would not fully adopt this defensive posture.19 However, considering the gradual decline in the survivability of U.S. military targets in the “first island chain,” the United States is also seeking to improve the damage-resistance capabilities of its own bases and promote the construction of a theater missile defense system aimed at China.

美国支持对华拒止性威慑战略的专家学者认为,拒止强调了分散的、有弹性的区域军事力量的价值。奥巴马政府时期,支持对华拒止性威慑的代表人物是美国海军战争学院的安德鲁·埃里克森(Andrew S. Erickson)。他认为,面对未来中国对争议岛屿的控制,美国不一定非要打败中国,只需阻止中国达成其目标即可。为此,美军应该发展直接防御和区域拒止能力。但彼时美国在西太地区的军事力量较中国更具优势,不会完全采取这种防御姿态。不过考虑到“第一岛链”内美国军事目标的生存性在逐渐降低,美国也在寻求提升己方基地的抗毁伤能力,并推进针对中国的战区导弹防御体系建设。

After Trump took office, China became a “primary competitor” as defined by the United States. The United States believes that the rapid increase in Chinese military power has made its forward presence in the Western Pacific “unprecedentedly vulnerable”, its military presence in the “first island chain” faces a real threat from China’s “anti-access/area denial” capabilities, and the support and logistical assurance deployments in the “Second Island Chain” have also become less secure due to the threat of medium and long-range strikes.20 On this basis, many security experts who have served in the U.S. Department of Defense believe that U.S. military strategy should further adopt the perspective of deterrence by denial, taking the opponent’s military capabilities as its main target and strengthening its own defense.21 Eric Heginbotham suggested that a global power like the United States cannot allocate the same proportion of resources to the Western Pacific region that China can, so denial is a reasonable compromise.22 Michael Beckley believed that the United States should take advantage of the existing military balance in the Western Pacific region and adopt an “active denial” strategy consisting of three elements: reducing its own forces, improving the denial capabilities of its allies, and supporting allies when necessary.[efn_noteMichael Beckley, “The Emerging Military Balance in East Asia: How China’s Neighbors Can Check Chinese Naval Expansion,” International Security, Vol. 42, No. 2, 2017, p. 117.[/efn_note] Jacob Cohn and others suggested that the United States could deploy short- and intermediate-range missiles in Japan, Taiwan, or the Philippines in the future for the purpose of deterrence by denial.23 Eugene Gholz and others advocated that the United States establish a set of “concentric circles”, relying on the numerous small islands from Japan to the island of Taiwan to the Philippines, in order to build more dispersed bases.24 Through an in-depth analysis of key U.S. strategic documents and extensive interviews with U.S. defense officials, Luis Simón found that the United States has been constantly working to reconcile deterrence by punishment and by denial. He believes that the United States should focus on investing in deterrence by punishment, while actively encouraging allies to develop deterrence by denial capabilities.25

特朗普上台后,中国成为美国定义的“主要竞争对手”。美国认为,中国军事力量的快速提升使其在西太地区的前沿存在变得“前所未有的脆弱”,“第一岛链”内的军事存在面临中国“反介入/区域拒止”能力的切实威胁,位于“第二岛链”的支援和后勤保障部署,也因面临中远程打击的威胁而变得不再牢固。基于此,诸多曾在美国国防部任职过的安全专家认为,美国军事战略应更多从拒止性威慑的角度出发,以对手的军事能力为主要目标并加强自身防御。何理凯(Eric Heginbotham)提出,美国这样的全球大国不可能像中国那样将资源高比例地分配给西太地区,因而拒止是一种合理的妥协。迈克尔·贝克利(Michael Beckley)认为美国应利用现有西太地区的军事平衡,采取由三个要素组成的“主动拒止”战略:削减自身兵力、提升盟友拒止能力以及必要时支援盟友。雅各布·科恩(Jacob Cohn)等人建议,未来美国可以在日本、台湾地区或菲律宾部署中短程导弹,以达成拒止性威慑的目的。尤金·戈尔兹(Eugene Gholz)等人主张美国建立一套“同心圆”,依靠从日本到台湾岛再到菲律宾的众多小岛,建立更多分散的基地。路易斯·西蒙(Luis Simón)通过对美国主要战略文件的深入分析和对美国防务界官员的广泛采访发现,美国一直在努力调和惩罚性威慑与拒止性威慑。他认为美国应该专注投资惩罚性威慑,同时积极鼓励盟友发展拒止性威慑能力。

In addition to the scholars mentioned above who have always held a positive attitude towards deterrence by denial, some American security experts have shifted from supporting deterrence by punishment to advocating deterrence by denial. Elbridge Colby made it clear in 2013 that the Obama administration’s model of strategic stability was too rigid and that the United States must consider the first use of nuclear weapons if it wanted to maintain its dominance in the Pacific.26 After joining the Trump administration as Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Strategy and Force Development, he continued to emphasize this view and received support from a number of senior officials. However, Colby turned to support the Sino-U.S. “limited war” theory in 2021, arguing that deterrence by denial was more effective and more necessary than pure nuclear deterrence. He proposed that the United States can weaken China’s ability to act by selecting appropriate allies and working together to deter China. He also confidently believed that as long as the United States clearly indicates the goal of denying China (referring to the Taiwan region), then the security dilemma between China and the United States should be manageable, with very low costs and risks.27

除了上述对拒止性威慑一直持肯定态度的学者,还有一些美国安全专家则从支持惩罚性威慑转向倡导拒止性威慑。埃尔布里奇·科尔比(Elbridge Colby)在2013年曾明确提出,奥巴马政府战略稳定的模式过于僵化,美国要想维持在太平洋地区的主导地位,就必须考虑首先使用核武器。在进入特朗普政府任负责战略与力量发展的助理国防部长帮办后,他继续强调上述观点并得到一众高官的支持。但科尔比在2021年又转向支持中美“有限战争”论,认为拒止性威慑比单纯的核威慑更有效也更必要。他提出,美国可以通过选择合适的盟友来联合威慑中国,削弱中国的行动能力。他还自信地认为,只要美国明确指向拒止中国的目标(指台湾地区),那么中美安全困境应该是可控的,而且成本和风险都很低。

Although U.S. scholars differ in their specific policy recommendations, their focus on the implementation of deterrence by denial strategies focuses on two aspects: One is how the United States can strengthen its denial capabilities in the Western Pacific region, especially in the “first island chain.” The second is how the United States can leverage the forces of its allies and enhance the defense capabilities of its main allies. Some of their proposals echo the content of the 2018 National Defense Strategy, the 2019 Missile Defense Review, and other documents that advocate the strengthening of deterrence by denial against China, which have become an important reference for the United States as it builds forces for deterrence by denial against China.

虽然美国学者在具体的政策建议上有差异,但他们对拒止性威慑战略实施的关注点集中在两个方面:一是美国在西太地区,尤其是“第一岛链”内如何加强自己的拒止能力;二是美国如何借助盟友力量并增强主要盟友的防御能力。他们的部分主张与2018年《国防战略》、2019年《导弹防御评估》等文件中提倡加强对华拒止性威慑的内容相呼应,成为美国对华拒止性威慑力量构建路径的重要参考。

(ii) Main Practices in the Trump Administration’s Strategy of Deterrence by Denial Against China
(二)特朗普政府对华拒止性威慑战略的主要实践

In 2012, the Obama administration officially launched the “Rebalancing Toward Asia-Pacific” strategy. At the official level, deterrence by denial became an important way to deal with the so-called “China challenge.” Its outstanding manifestation was that the United States strengthened the deployment of conventional forces in the Asia-Pacific region and concentrated Asia-Pacific region missile defense systems in Northeast Asia, taking into account both tactical and strategic missile defense capabilities. However, out of a desire to maintain the positive cooperative relationship between China and the United States, many strategic documents of the Obama administration declared that they aimed to establish a strategic and stable relationship with China. The 2010 Missile Defense Review also made a vague statement about the policy of deterrence by denial against China and did not deliberately emphasize China. After a major debate within the United States about its policy toward China in 2015, the U.S. military strategy underwent a partial adjustment. The 2015 U.S. National Military Strategy report groundlessly accused China of creating tensions in the Asia-Pacific region and emphasized the need to regularly demonstrate willingness and capability to act through forward deployed, rotating, and globally responsive forces to be ready to directly prevent adversaries from achieving their goals.28 This showed that the United States’ deterrence by denial strategy against China was becoming more focused [摆脱之前的游离状态, literally “get rid of its previous state of disassociation/drift”].

2012年奥巴马政府正式推出“亚太再平衡”战略,在官方层面,拒止性威慑成为应对所谓“中国挑战”的重要方式。其突出表现是美国加强了在亚太地区的常规力量部署,亚太地区的导弹防御系统部署整体上向东北亚集中,并兼顾了战术和战略反导能力。但出于维持中美积极合作关系的考虑,奥巴马政府的多份战略文件都宣称要与中国建立战略稳定关系,2010年的《弹道导弹防御评估》在对华拒止性威慑政策的宣示上表述也较为模糊,并没有刻意强调中国。在2015年美国国内对华政策大辩论后,美国的军事战略出现了部分调整。2015年的美国《国家军事战略》报告无端指责中国在亚太地区制造紧张局势,强调要通过前沿部署的、轮换的和全球响应的部队,定期展示行动意愿和能力,随时准备直接阻止对手实现其目标。这表明,美国的对华拒止性威慑战略开始摆脱之前的游离状态。

After Trump took office, the intention of the United States to deter China by denial gradually became clear. The 2018 National Defense Strategy proposed that the U.S. military must adopt a deterrence by denial stance that focuses on deterring an adversary’s attack in the first place, rather than deterring an adversary with the promise of punishment after aggression.29 Overall, the main measures of the Trump administration’s deterrence by denial strategy against China were to enhance the “area denial” capability within the “first island chain” and focus on strengthening reserve force assurance and military support capabilities in the “second island chain.”

特朗普上台后,美国对中国拒止性威慑的意图逐渐清晰。2018年的《国防战略》提出,美军必须采取拒止性威慑的姿态,重点是首先阻止对手的进攻,而不是通过侵略后的惩罚承诺来威慑对手。总体来看,特朗普政府对华拒止性威慑战略的主要措施是在“第一岛链”内提升“区域拒止”能力,在“第二岛链”内重点加强后备力量保障和军事支援能力。

1.      Strengthening resilience capacity building for military systems
1. 加强军事系统弹性能力建设

The U.S. military emphasizes the “resilience” of military systems, including multi-domain capabilities such as the sea, land, air, and space networks, is based on approaches such as threat deterrence, system robustness, system reconstruction, and capability recovery. It can be understood as an enhanced version of passive defense.

美军强调的军事系统“弹性”,包括海陆空天网等多域能力,围绕威胁慑止、体系强健、系统重构、能力恢复等途径展开,可以理解为一种强化版的被动防御。

First, the United States is focusing on building and strengthening the resilience of military bases in the Western Pacific region. For the United States, due to its limited number of bases in the Western Pacific region and their remoteness from the homeland, effective deterrence is difficult to achieve if these bases lack resilience. Therefore, the United States is focusing on enhancing the resilience of air and sea bases in the Western Pacific region, primarily including region-wide intelligence support, base expansion, and sea and air force preparation in order to complicate the opponent’s offensive plans. The Trump administration focused on improving the survivability of ground forces and expanding the reserve support capabilities of the “second island chain.” The U.S. Air Force spent $260 million to expand and upgrade its base on Guam to accommodate Marines withdrawn to the base from the “first island chain” and accommodate more tankers, large transport aircraft, and bombers.30 In addition to strengthening the construction of Guam’s resilience system, the United States also plans to develop old bases on islands such as Tinian and Saipan. Through the combination of a few high-quality large bases and many lower-quality small bases, the United States is striving to build a more resilient group of bases in the Western Pacific region so as to carry out its distributed combat deployments and strengthen the invulnerability of its combat systems. Therefore, the new base group will also become an important support point for the United States as it implements its strategy of deterrence by denial against China and maintains its hegemony in the Pacific region. In terms of service construction, the navy, as the mainstay of the U.S. military, emphasizes the forward deployment of distributed combat forces to increase the difficulty of attacks by opponents. At the core is the construction of a (manned/unmanned) fleet with both quality and quantity, with small and medium-sized and highly mobile formation forces deployed at strategic chokepoints to carry out so-called “sea denial.” The Marine Corps also proposed a new “Expeditionary Advance Base Operations” (EABO) concept, which aims to bring together resources to continuously strengthen the “resilience” of bases and islands in the Western Pacific region, seek to establish a series of bases, and launch missiles flexibly (including land-based intermediate-range missiles) to form deterrence by denial.

首先,美国着力构建和强化西太地区军事基地的弹性能力。对美国而言,由于其在西太地区的基地数量有限且远离本土,有效威慑很难在这些基地缺少弹性能力的情况下实现,因此美国着力在西太地区增强海空基地弹性能力建设,主要包括全域情报支援、基地扩建、海空力量整备等,意在使对手的进攻计划面临复杂化的环境。特朗普政府将重心放在了提升地面部队生存能力、扩展“第二岛链”后备保障能力上。美国空军花费了2.6亿美元扩建升级关岛基地,以容纳从“第一岛链”撤至基地内的海军陆战队,并将容纳更多的加油机、大型运输机和轰炸机。除了加强关岛的弹性体系建设,美国还计划开发天宁岛、塞班岛等岛屿上的旧基地。通过少而精的大型基地与多而疏的小型基地相配合的方式,美国极力打造更有弹性的西太地区基地群,从而遂行其分布式作战部署,强化其作战体系的抗毁性。新基地群因此也将成为美国实施对华拒止性威慑战略和维持太平洋地区霸权的重要支撑点。军种建设方面,作为美军中坚力量的海军,强调通过前沿部署分布式作战力量以提高对手打击难度。其核心是建设一支质、量并重的(有人/无人)舰队,以中小规模和高度机动的编队力量,部署在战略咽喉地带以遂行所谓“海上拒止”。海军陆战队也提出了新的“远征前进基地行动”(EABO)概念,旨在筹集资源持续强化西太地区基地与岛屿的“弹性能力”,谋求建立系列基地,灵活发射导弹(包括陆基中导),以形成拒止性威慑。

Second, the United States is strengthening forward defense and resilience capacity building in cyberspace, and simultaneously developing powerful network traceability and punishment methods. Together, these two approaches maximize deterrence. U.S. deterrence by denial in cyberspace emphasizes the importance of resisting and defending against attacks, with a focus on securing and maintaining the government assets that form the basis of U.S. national power as well as systemically important critical infrastructure. The report released by the U.S. “Cyberspace Solarium Commission” clearly stated that the United States will be committed to building a multi-level, compound-type cyber deterrence strategy. The core layer of the “Layered Cyber Deterrence” strategy is the denial of benefit layer, and the key is to strengthen network resilience and defense capabilities.31 Strengthening the integrated cooperation of cyber defense and attack capabilities is an important part of the United States’ promotion of cyber security cooperation in its Asia-Pacific alliances. Asia-Pacific allies have strengthened their military capabilities and coordination in cyberspace by participating in the United States’ “CyberStorm” series of military exercises.32

其次,美国在网络空间加强前置防御和弹性能力建设,同时发展强大的网络溯源与惩罚手段,两者相配合以最大程度发挥威慑力。美国网络空间的拒止性威慑强调防御和抵御攻击的重要性,其重点是保障和维护构成美国国家权力基础的政府资产,以及具有系统重要性的关键基础设施。美国“网络空间日光浴委员会”发布的报告明确提出,美国将致力于构建多层次复合型的网络威慑战略。“分层网络威慑”战略的核心层即为拒止获益层,关键是加强网络韧性和防御能力。增强网络防御与攻击的一体化合作是美国推进亚太同盟网络安全合作的重要内容,亚太盟国通过参与美国“网络风暴”系列军事演习强化了网络空间的军事能力与协同。

Finally, in terms of space-based denial capabilities, the United States has made great efforts to enhance the resilience and defense capabilities of space systems in order to improve the damage-resistance of its space assets. As early as 2013, the U.S. Air Force Space Command called for enhanced resiliency of space assets. However, at that time, the technology for the mass production of satellites was not yet mature, so “resilience” remained at the conceptual stage. By 2016, the U.S. intelligence community believed that China’s anti-satellite capabilities had improved again. At the same time, the commercial satellite industry in the United States was gradually emerging and micro-satellite technology, on-orbit satellite mobility technology, and satellite on-orbit detection and maintenance capabilities had all greatly improved, so the construction of a new decentralized and resilient space system began to receive attention. The United States also reintroduced the concept of “space resilience” that year. The 2018 edition of the U.S. National Space Strategy re-emphasized the concept of “resilience,” arguing that accelerated change is needed to enhance the resilience, defense capabilities, and restoration following attack of space structures.33 The “Starlink” plan proposed by SpaceX and strongly supported by the U.S. government and the Space Force intends to use the most advanced satellite manufacturing technology and the most economical launch methods to achieve resilient architectures for space-based systems and assist the U.S. military in communications, navigation, and other tasks.

最后,在天基拒止能力方面,美国大力增强太空系统的弹性和防御能力,以提升其太空资产的抗毁伤能力。早在2013年,美国空军航天司令部就呼吁增强太空资产的弹性,但彼时卫星大规模制造技术尚未成熟,因此“弹性”仅停留在概念阶段。到2016年,美国情报界认为中国反卫星能力又有所提升,而且美国的商业卫星产业逐渐兴起,微型卫星技术、在轨卫星机动性技术和卫星在轨检测与维修能力都得到大幅度提升,因此建设新的分散化弹性太空体系开始受到重视。美国也在当年重提“太空弹性”概念。2018年版美国《国家太空战略》又再度强调了“弹性”概念,认为需要加快变革,以增强太空架构的弹性、防御能力以及在遭受打击后的恢复能力。美国政府和太空军大力支持的由太空探索公司(SpaceX)提出的“星链”计划,就意图借助最先进的卫星制造技术和最经济的发射方式实现天基系统的弹性架构,辅助美军的通信、导航等任务。

2.      Strengthening theater missile defense systems in the Western Pacific
2. 在西太地区强化战区导弹防御体系

The Trump administration had a soft spot for new missile defense systems, which stems from the Republicans’ worship of “absolute security” on the one hand, and is also related to the rapid improvement of Chinese missile capabilities on the other. The United States believes that the advanced cruise missiles currently equipped by China are the main attack methods for China’s implementation of its “anti-access/area denial” strategy. In addition, China’s hypersonic missile technology is also making rapid progress, and it is very difficult for current U.S. missile warning systems to detect these weapons.34 Therefore, the Trump administration expanded the mission of missile defense in the Missile Defense Review, including cruise missile defense and hypersonic missile defense as part of the three goals of missile defense for the first time.35

特朗普政府对新的导弹防御体系可谓情有独钟,这一方面源于共和党对“绝对安全”的崇拜,另一方面也与中国导弹能力的迅速提升相关。美国认为,中国当前装备的先进巡航导弹是其实施“反介入/区域拒止”战略的主要打击手段。而且,中国的高超音速导弹技术也在飞跃进步,美国当前的导弹预警系统对这些武器的探测难度很大。鉴于此,特朗普政府在《导弹防御评估》中扩充了导弹防御的任务,首次将巡航导弹防御和高超音速导弹防御作为导弹防御三大目标的一部分。

The extreme interest of the Trump administration in damage limitation marked the climax of a new round of the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China and received strong support from Congress. The U.S. defense budget for fiscal year 2019 supports an increase in the number of ships that make up the sea-based “Aegis” regional missile defense system from 38 to 60 by 2023 as well as the purchase of the more advanced “SM-3 Block IIA” interceptor developed by the United States and Japan.36 The “Aegis” ships equipped with the new interceptor are expected to perform combat missions mainly in the Pacific region.37 The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) is also striving to fully upgrade the Aegis combat management system to “Baseline 9.” This version is the first to integrate the air defense and ballistic missile defense capabilities of the “Aegis” system and has become the core system of the U.S. Navy’s integrated air defense and missile defense capabilities.38 The upgraded “Aegis” ships equipped with “SM-3” missiles can perform mid-course interception missions, which will enhance U.S. missile defense capabilities in the Western Pacific region. In addition, the Trump administration also attached great importance to improving the performance of cruise missile detection sensors and continuously developed defense and interception technologies for hypersonic weapons. The main idea is to comprehensively use multi-domain, all-platform, and multi-sensor collaborative detection and use a multi-layer missile defense system for interception, while simultaneously seeking more economical and effective low-cost weapons to put into combat applications, so as to build a layered multi-domain missile defense system aimed at China.39

特朗普政府对损害限制的极大兴趣开启了美国推行新一轮对华拒止性威慑战略的高潮,并得到了国会的鼎力支持。美国2019财年国防预算支持美军到2023年,将组成海基“宙斯盾”区域导弹防御系统的舰艇数量从38艘增加到60艘,并采购美日合作研发的更先进的“标准-3BlockIIA”拦截弹。配备新型拦截弹的“宙斯盾”舰预计将主要在太平洋地区执行战斗任务。美国国防部还争取全面升级“宙斯盾”作战管理系统至“基线9”,该版本首次将“宙斯盾”系统的防空能力和弹道导弹防御能力整合在一起,成为美国海军一体化防空反导能力的核心系统。装备“标准-3”导弹的升级型“宙斯盾”舰可执行中段拦截任务,这将增强美国在西太地区的导弹防御能力。此外,特朗普政府还高度重视提升对巡航导弹的探测传感器性能,不断研发高超音速武器防御拦截技术。其主要思路是综合利用多域全平台多传感器协同探测,运用多层导弹防御体系拦截,同时寻求更经济有效的低成本武器投入作战应用,以此打造针对中国的分层多域导弹防御体系。

During the Trump administration, relations between the United States and its allies tended to be tense, but for the coordination of anti-missile defense with its Asia-Pacific allies the United States needs to help improve the denial capabilities of regional allies and partners
so that they can better protect their territories and enforce their maritime rights.40 At the end of 2017, Japan decided to purchase two land-based “Aegis” systems from the United States in response to the missile threat from China and North Korea. Although the project was ultimately canceled for cost and technical reasons, Japan instead decided to upgrade its sea-based national missile defense system and received strong support from the United States. The United States has invested in helping the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force carry out R&D and system integration for the “Aegis” and Baseline 9. The new system is installed on Japan’s new generation of Maya class destroyers and can launch “SM-3 Block IIA” interceptors.41 U.S.-Australia anti-missile cooperation reached a relative high point during the Trump era. Australia has decided to install the “Aegis” system on its most advanced Hobart-class destroyers. According to media speculation, after all nine new “Hunter” class frigates are launched in 2028, Australia will have the largest “Aegis” fleet except for the U.S. Navy.42 Although the Taiwan authorities are not a treaty ally of the United States, the Trump administration placed a high value on the improvement of Taiwan’s denial capabilities. Shortly after Trump took office, he approved the sale of early warning radar monitoring technical support system and “SM-2” missile components to Taiwan, and in July 2020, he sold them the supporting equipment and technology of the “PAC-3” system. This series of actions shows that an important way for the Trump administration to strengthen deterrence by denial capabilities around China, and especially air and missile defense capabilities, was to provide allies with technical or equipment support to enhance their denial capabilities, allowing them to work together to deter China.

特朗普执政时期,美国与盟友的关系趋于紧张,但其同亚太盟国在协同反导领域的合作却不降反升。时任美国太平洋司令部司令哈里·哈里斯(Harry Harris)称,美国需要帮助提高区域盟友和合作伙伴的拒止能力,以便它们更好地保护其领土和履行其海洋权利。2017年底,日本决定从美国购买两套陆基“宙斯盾”系统,以应对中朝的导弹威胁。虽然项目最后因成本和技术原因被取消,但日本转而决定升级海基国家导弹防御系统,并得到美国的大力支持。美国出资帮助日本海上自卫队对“宙斯盾”“基线9”进行研发与系统整合,新系统安装在日本新一代“摩耶”级驱逐舰上,并能发射“标准-3BlockIIA”拦截弹。美澳反导合作在特朗普时期迎来了一个小高峰。澳大利亚决定为其最先进的“霍巴特”级驱逐舰安装“宙斯盾”系统。据媒体推测,在9艘新型“猎人”级护卫舰于2028年全部下水后,澳大利亚将拥有除美国海军以外最大规模的“宙斯盾”舰队。台湾当局虽不是美国的条约盟友,但特朗普政府对台湾地区拒止能力的提升高度重视。特朗普上台后不久就批准了对台出售预警雷达监测技术支持系统和“标准-2”导弹部件,2020年7月又出售了“爱国者-3”系统的配套设备和技术。这一系列举动说明,特朗普政府在中国周边加强拒止性威慑能力,尤其是防空反导能力的重要方式,就是通过给盟友提供技术或装备支持来增强它们的拒止能力,进而共同威慑中国。

3.      Rapidly improving land-based intermediate-range strike capabilities
3. 快速提升陆基中程打击能力

From the view of the United States, land-based intermediate missiles have several significant advantages in enhancing deterrence by denial. First, if a massive number of land-based intermediate missiles are deployed in a widely dispersed manner, it will introduce uncertainty to China’s strategic calculations and effectively consume various types of Chinese missiles. Second, land-based intermediate missiles can help shape the United States’ combat readiness posture (应战态势), thereby enhancing the credibility of its deterrence by denial. Third, the mass deployment of land-based intermediate-range missiles will force China to invest in expensive defense and resilience measures, rather than continuing to develop asymmetric capabilities. This could offset China’s area denial advantage.

在美国看来,陆基中导对于增强拒止性威慑具有多种显著优势。第一,数量庞大的陆基中导如果分散部署,将给中国的战略计算带来不确定性,有效消耗中国的各类导弹。第二,陆基中导有助于塑造美国的应战态势,进而增强其拒止性威慑可信度。第三,陆基中导的大量部署将使中国不得不投资昂贵的防御和弹性措施,而不是继续发展非对称能力,这可以对冲中国的区域拒止优势。

After Trump took office, his decision-making team quickly took aim at the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty, which constrained their denial capabilities. The United States believes that China’s massive missile force has the ability to carry out rapid strikes against the U.S. military at a longer distance, thereby taking advantage of its strategic depth to gain a huge advantage. Therefore, the Trump administration believed that they just had to get rid of the restrictions of the INF Treaty so that the United States could deploy conventional missile systems and disperse them among combat units throughout the “first island chain” or “second island chain” so as to achieve a balance between China and the United States in the field of intermediate-range missiles.43

特朗普上台后,其决策团队将矛头迅速对准了束缚其拒止能力的《中导条约》。美国认为,中国庞大的导弹部队有能力在更远的距离上对美军实施快速打击,从而利用其战略纵深取得巨大优势。因此,特朗普政府认为,只要摆脱了《中导条约》的限制,美国就可以通过部署常规导弹系统,并将其分散部署在整个“第一岛链”或“第二岛链”的作战单位中,以此来实现中美在中导领域的平衡。

The United States tested a ground-based “Tomahawk” missile with a range of more than 1,600 kilometers two weeks after the official termination of the INF Treaty. Marine Corps Commandant David Berger said that if the Marine Corps were equipped with this missile, it could help the Navy to seize control of the sea and carry out sea denial missions.44 In addition to the technologically mature land-based “Tomahawk” missile, the Trump administration has also accelerated R&D and testing of the Precision Strike Missile (PrSM), which has a basic range of 499 kilometers. In fact, the United States started the pre-research tasks for this project long before it withdrew from the INF Treaty. After the formal withdrawal, the Army Modernization Strategy made Long-Range Precision Fires (LRPF) a top priority.45 The PrSM has also successfully entered the formal R&D and production stage. The missile was successfully tested for the first time in December 2019, and has been improved and tested many times since. Although the PrSM is an intermediate-range tactical missile, it has a lot of potential for upgrades and improvements, and its flexible deployment method gives it a significant strategic impact.

美国早在正式终止《中导条约》两周后就试射了射程超过1600千米的陆基“战斧”导弹。海军陆战队司令戴维·伯杰(David Berger)对此表示,如果陆战队装备了此款导弹,将可以帮助海军夺取制海权并遂行海上拒止任务。除了技术成熟的陆基“战斧”导弹,特朗普政府在退约后还加快了对精确打击导弹(PrSM)的研发试验工作,该型导弹基础射程达499千米。实际上,美国早在退出《中导条约》前就开始了该项目的预研任务。正式退约后,陆军的现代化战略将远程精确火力(LRPF)列为最优先事项。精确打击导弹也顺理成章地进入正式研发和生产阶段。2019年12月,该型导弹首次成功试射,之后又进行了多次改进和试射。尽管精确打击导弹是一款中程战术导弹,但升级改进空间很大,其灵活的部署方式也将带来显著的战略影响。

(iii) Practices in the Biden Administration’s Strategy of Deterrence by Denial Against China
(三)拜登政府对华拒止性威慑战略的实践

The Biden administration’s military strategy toward China partly continues the deterrence by denial of the Trump era. By analyzing trends in the United States over the past year, we can catch a glimpse of the implementation prospects of the Biden administration’s strategy of deterrence by denial against China.

拜登政府对华军事战略方针部分延续了特朗普时期的拒止性威慑。通过分析美国这一年多来的动向,可以一窥拜登政府的对华拒止性威慑战略实施前景。

1.      Development of deterrence by denial capabilities under the framework of “integrated deterrence”
1. 在“一体化威慑”框架下发展拒止性威慑能力

The Biden administration’s Indo-Pacific Strategy report proposes that “integrated deterrence” is the cornerstone of the U.S. national security strategy. The United States is committed to preventing military attacks on itself and its allies and partners and promoting so-called “regional security” through the development of new capabilities, operational concepts, military activities, defense industry initiatives, and a more resilient force posture.46 This “integrated deterrence” means integrating the main combat equipment and key facilities of the United States and its allies and simultaneously using new technologies to empower existing military missions in order realize the full-spectrum advantage of the combat capabilities of the U.S. military in the Western Pacific region and thereby improve overall deterrence. The United States deploys highly dispersed but highly connected military forces to increase the resilience and flexibility of deterrence forces, while leveraging emerging technologies in an effort to improve the battlefield awareness, projection capabilities, and strike effectiveness of deterrent forces. A direct goal of the Biden administration’s military strategy toward China remains the use of a combination of offensive and defensive means to deter and disrupt China’s rapid military operations and strive to limit damage to U.S. military bases, even outside the territory of allies and partner countries. The Biden administration’s new National Defense Strategy briefing has also made it clear that the Missile Defense Review and Nuclear Posture Review will be included in the text of the National Defense Strategy.47 This illustrates that the core goal of the Biden administration’s “integrated deterrence” is to complicate China’s military preparations in the Western Pacific by integrating deterrence by denial and deterrence by punishment and consolidating currently available deterrence methods.

拜登政府的《印太战略》报告提出,“一体化威慑”是美国国家安全战略的基石。美国致力于阻止对其及盟友、伙伴的军事攻击,并通过发展新的能力、行动概念、军事活动、国防工业倡议、更有弹性部队态势来促进所谓“区域安全”。所谓“一体化威慑”,就是通过统合美国及其盟友的主要作战装备和关键设施,同时利用新技术赋能现有军事任务,实现美军在西太地区军事能力的全频谱优势,从而提高整体威慑力。美国部署高度分散但高度联通的军事力量的目的,是为了增加威慑力量的弹性和灵活性,而利用新兴技术则是为了努力提升威慑力量的战场感知、投送能力以及打击效力。拜登政府对华军事战略的一个直接目标仍是综合使用攻防手段阻止和破坏中国快速的军事行动,并努力寻求将损害限制在美军基地甚至是盟友及伙伴国领土以外。拜登政府的新版《国防战略》情况简报也已经明示,《导弹防御评估》和《核态势评估》会共同纳入《国防战略》文本中。这说明拜登政府“一体化威慑”的核心目标是通过融合拒止性威慑和惩罚性威慑,整合现有可用的威慑手段,以使中国在西太地区的军事准备复杂化。

In short, “denial against denial” (以拒止反拒止) has become the main method of deterrence used by the United States against China. As an important part of the “integrated deterrence” strategy, the primary goal of the U.S. “Pacific Deterrence Initiative” is to protect U.S. military bases and other critical infrastructure from the threat of China’s “anti-access/area denial” capabilities and guarantee the survivability of U.S. denial forces in order to maintain U.S. military superiority in conventional arms in the Western Pacific. Its basic significance is to destroy and weaken Chinese strike plans and capabilities targeting U.S. troops and infrastructure by heavy investment, or to be able to suppress China early in a conflict and ensure that the United States has absolute military advantages, thereby deterring the Chinese army from quickly defeating the U.S. military at a lower cost.48 The Biden administration requested a $6.1 billion budget for the “Pacific Deterrence Initiative” in fiscal year 2023, to be used for the development and upgrade of denial capabilities such as military construction, Guam defenses, and missile warning and tracking architecture.49 According to the FY 2023 budget application form for the “Pacific Deterrence Initiative” released by the U.S. DoD, excluding routine drills and training projects, “modernizing and strengthening regional presence” and “improving infrastructure to enhance U.S. military response and resilience capabilities” will be the main concerns of the “Pacific Deterrence Initiative” over the next five years.50 This shows that the Biden administration’s strategy of deterrence by denial against China will focus on continuously enhancing the forward presence of the U.S. military in the Western Pacific region and attempts to improve deterrence and response capabilities in this region through superior conventional forces, focusing on land and sea denial and missile defense capabilities.

简要地说,“以拒止反拒止”已经成为当前美国对华威慑的主要手段。作为“一体化威慑”战略的重要组成部分,美国“太平洋威慑倡议”(Pacific Deterrence Initiative)的首要目标,是保护美军基地及其他关键基础设施不受中国“反介入/区域拒止”能力的威胁,保证美军拒止力量的生存能力,以维持美国在西太地区的常规军事优势。其基本内涵,就是通过投入重金,破坏和弱化中国以美国军队和基础设施为目标的打击计划和能力;或是在一场冲突的早期就能够压制中国,确保其拥有绝对军事优势,从而慑止中国军队以较低成本快速打败美军的念头。拜登政府在2023财年为“太平洋威慑倡议”申请了61亿美元预算,用于军事建设、关岛防御、导弹预警和跟踪架构等拒止能力的开发和升级。从美国国防部发布的2023财年“太平洋威慑倡议”预算申请表看,除去日常演习培训项目,“现代化和强化地区存在”与“改善基础设施以提升美军反应能力和弹性能力”两类项目将成为未来5年内“太平洋威慑倡议”的主要关切。这说明拜登政府的对华拒止性威慑战略将聚焦持续增强美军在西太地区的前沿存在,力图以优势常规力量提高在该地区的威慑力和反应能力,重点则是海陆拒止和导弹防御能力。

2.      Seeking defense-in-depth capabilities while advancing the new intermediate-range program
2. 推进新中导计划的同时寻求深度防御能力

In order to develop precision strike capability that can deny China, the United States has been spending heavily to purchase new precision strike weapons and accelerate their deployment in recent years. Several intermediate-range missile programs started under the Trump administration have continued after Biden took office. The U.S. Indo-Pacific Command regards the construction of a “highly survivable precision strike network along the first island chain” as one of its core tasks and plans to establish a precision strike network with a range of more than 500 km in the “first island chain.”51 In addition to promoting the rapid production of precision strike missiles, the Biden administration has also continued to advance the new intermediate-range missile program launched at the end of the Trump administration, seeking to upgrade the “Tomahawk” and “SM-6” missiles used by the Navy to land-based versions. To this end, the Biden administration has overcome many technical and financial obstacles and tried to transfer more resources to the rapid R&D of new conventional precision missiles. For example, the short range and high cost of the “SM-6” once discouraged the U.S. Army from adopting it, and outside observers also speculated that the land-based “SM-6” might not be the preferred choice.52 However, considering that this type of missile will be the future hub of the Army’s Multi-Domain Task Force’s intermediate-range strike force, the Biden administration persisted in investing heavily in order to integrate the “SM-6” into land-based mobile platforms as quickly as possible and create combat effectiveness. The Biden administration requested $409 million for the new intermediate-range missile program in FY 2023, five times the initial funding the Trump administration provided for the program in FY 2021.53 The implementation of the new intermediate-range missile program will complement the ground and sea strike capabilities of U.S. Navy ships and threaten targets within China’s defense in depth region. Although it has only been two years since the United States withdrew from the INF Treaty, the land-based INF program is advancing extremely rapidly due to benefits from the accumulation of early-stage technologies, and it is expected to generate initial combat effectiveness as soon as 2023.54 After finding suitable deployment sites, the precision missile strike network along the “first island chain” will gradually take shape.

为了发展可以拒止中国的精确打击能力,美国近年来一直在斥巨资购买新的精确打击武器并加快部署。始自特朗普政府的多个中导计划在拜登上台后得到了延续。美国印太司令部将构建“具有高度生存力、沿第一岛链的精确打击网络”作为其核心任务之一,并计划在“第一岛链”建立射程超过500千米的精确打击网。除了推动精确打击导弹快速落地生产,拜登政府还继续推进特朗普执政末期启动的新中导计划,寻求将海军使用的“战斧”导弹和“标准-6”导弹升级为陆基版本。为此,拜登政府克服诸多技术和资金障碍,试图将更多资源转移到新型常规精确导弹的快速研发上。例如,“标准-6”较短的射程和高昂的造价一度令美国陆军望而却步,外界也猜测陆基“标准-6”可能并不是首选。但考虑到该型导弹未来将是陆军多域特遣部队中程打击力量的枢纽,拜登政府仍坚持投入巨资以期尽快将“标准-6”集成到陆基移动平台上并形成战斗力。拜登政府在2023财年为新的中导项目申请了4.09亿美元,是特朗普政府在2021财年为该项目提供的初始资金的五倍。新中导项目的落地,将为美国海军舰艇的对地和对海打击能力提供补充,并威胁到中国防御纵深内的目标。美国退出《中导条约》虽仅有两年多时间,但受益于前期技术的积累,陆基中导计划的推进异常迅速,预计最快于2023年生成初始战斗力。在寻找到合适的部署地后,沿“第一岛链”的精确导弹打击网络将逐渐成形。

As part of a deterrence by denial approach, defense in depth refers to holding off an attacker through a series of defensive positions with the aim of repressing the offensive firepower of the attacker at each position. However, the most notable disadvantage of this strategy is that it requires a lot of resources, so defenders are more likely to employ defense-in-depth strategies to protect a particularly important location.55 In the view of Biden’s military team, Guam is currently just such an important defensive position. Guam’s current missile defense mission is maintained by “THAAD” and “Aegis” ships, but Indo-Pacific Command believes that this is far from enough. Shortly after Biden took office, former Indo-Pacific commander Philip Davidson and current commander John C. Aquilino showed Congress the importance of Guam as the missile defense hub of the “second island chain” and its favorability for the land-based “Aegis” system. The DoD then asked the Missile Defense Agency to conduct a preliminary study. According to the information released by the Missile Defense Agency, the land-based “Aegis” system designed for the Indo-Pacific Command will be specially used to intercept various types of Chinese missiles. It is equipped with “SM-3” missiles to intercept ballistic missiles and “SM-6” missiles to intercept cruise missiles.56 The Biden administration requested $892 million in the defense budget for FY 2023 to strengthen Guam’s defenses, mainly to improve missile defense capabilities.57

作为拒止性威慑方式的一部分,深度防御是指在一系列防守位置上抵抗进攻方,目的是阻遏进攻方在每个位置上的进攻火力。但该策略最显著的缺点是需要大量的资源,因此防御方更可能采用深度防御策略来保护一个特别重要的位置。在拜登的军事团队看来,这个重要的防守位置当前非关岛莫属。关岛目前的导弹防御任务由“萨德”系统和“宙斯盾”舰维持,但印太司令部认为这远远不够。拜登上台后不久,印太司令部前任司令菲利普·戴维森(Philip Davidson)和现任司令约翰·阿奎利诺(John C. Aquilino)就向国会表明了将关岛作为“第二岛链”导弹防御枢纽的重要性,并对陆基“宙斯盾”系统青睐有加。国防部随后要求导弹防御局进行先期研究。根据导弹防御局公布的信息,其为印太司令部设计的陆基“宙斯盾”系统将专门用来拦截中国的各型导弹,其装载的“标准-3”主要用来拦截弹道导弹,“标准-6”则用来拦截巡航导弹。拜登政府在2023财年国防预算中为加强关岛防御申请了8.92亿美元,主要用以提高导弹防御能力。

Although “Aegis” is already a relatively mature interception system, the Indo-Pacific Command said that related missile defense equipment will also be deployed in Guam after other new interception methods are successfully developed.58 The U.S. military vigorously promotes the “UAV-borne Directed Energy Weapon” project, intending to load high-energy lasers on UAVs to intercept missiles in the booster stage so as to minimize the lethality of incoming missiles.59 In fact, as the military applications of directed energy technology continue to mature, the power of directed energy weapons will be increased while reducing the influence of limiting factors. The potential advantages of these weapons, such as extremely low single-shot cost, nearly unlimited ammunition, and rapid engagement, can provide the U.S. military with sustained tactical and strategic advantages. In February 2022, Heidi Shyu, the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering, called on the DoD to make directed energy one of its priorities for maintaining U.S. technological superiority and called for the construction of a robust and reliable supply chain for this purpose.60 If mature directed energy technology is used for missile interception, the cost-effectiveness of missile defense will be greatly increased, and the United States will achieve a qualitative leap in its deterrence by denial capability against China.

虽然“宙斯盾”已经是较为成熟的拦截系统,但印太司令部表示,待其他新型拦截手段研制成功后,相关导弹防御装备也将部署在关岛。美军大力推进“无人机载定向能武器”项目,意图通过在无人机上装载高能激光器,在导弹助推段进行拦截,以期最大限度地削弱来袭导弹的杀伤能力。事实上,随着定向能技术军事应用的不断成熟,定向能武器的功率得到提升的同时能够降低限制因素影响。其潜在优势如单发成本极低、弹药量近乎无限、可快速交战等特点,可为美军提供持续的战术及战略优势。2022年2月,美国国防部负责研究与工程的副部长徐若冰(Heidi Shyu)呼吁国防部将定向能列为保持美国技术优势的优先事项之一,并要求为此建立一个强大可靠的供应链。成熟的定向能技术如果被用于导弹拦截,导弹防御的费效比将大大降低,美国的对华拒止性威慑能力会实现质的飞跃。

3.      Consolidating a foundation of allies and partners for joint denial against China
3. 夯实盟友及伙伴协作基础以联合拒止中国

Since they came to office, the Biden administration has maintained that they would be committed to repairing the alliances that were damaged during the Trump era. An important goal of the “integrated deterrence” strategy is to incorporate allied forces into its deterrence system. The U.S. military believes that, due to factors such as the defense budget, it faces many difficulties in the modernization of nuclear weapons systems, the procurement of advanced weapons and equipment, and the R&D of emerging disruptive technologies. Their existing platform capabilities can no longer effectively meet the needs of strategic deterrence and day-to-day military operations. Therefore, it is necessary to utilize allied forces to strengthen the deterrence capability. From this perspective, “integrated deterrence” is actually an important measure in the current reconstruction of a new type of alliance system by the Biden administration.

拜登政府上台之初就表示将致力于修复特朗普时期破损的盟友关系。“一体化威慑”战略的一个重要目标,是将盟友力量纳入其威慑体系。美军认为,受国防预算等因素影响,其在核武器系统现代化、先进武器装备采购和新兴颠覆性技术研发等领域面临不少困难,现有平台能力已无法有效满足战略威慑和日常军事行动的需求,因此需要借助盟友力量强化威慑能力。从这个角度上讲,“一体化威慑”实际上也是当前拜登政府重构新型盟友体系的一项重要举措。

Improving the precision strike network is the main measure taken by the Biden administration to build “first island chain” deterrence by denial capability. It is worth noting that although allies are more cautious about the deployment of intermediate-range missiles by the United States, their enthusiasm for R&D of intermediate-range missiles has not diminished. In May 2021, the Biden administration decided to terminate the U.S.-South Korea Missile Guidelines, allowing South Korea to develop various types of missiles under permitted conditions. Australia and the United States signed a memorandum of understanding in September 2021 to participate in the development of precision strike missiles.61 In January 2022, the United States and Japan issued a statement after their “2+2” talks, saying that the two sides “committed to increase joint/shared use of U.S. and Japanese facilities, including efforts to strengthen Japan Self-Defense Forces’ posture in areas including its southwestern islands.”62 Once the United States and Japan complete the corresponding work, they will be able to quickly deploy and replenish weapons and ammunition near the Taiwan region. Like Trump, Biden also set about planning to continue to improve Taiwan’s denial capabilities after taking office: In February 2022, it approved the sale of U.S. $100 million worth of “Patriot” system engineering service support to Taiwan for a period of five years. In April, it announced the approval of the “Patriot Project Personnel Technical Assistance Case” with a total sales price of U.S. $95 million. As the Biden administration accelerates the construction of a system of deterrence by denial forces targeting China, it may continue to provide some key denial capabilities to Taiwan in the future.

完善精确打击网络是拜登政府构建“第一岛链”拒止性威慑能力的主要举措。值得注意的是,虽然盟友对美国部署中导表态比较谨慎,但它们研发中导的热情却丝毫未减。2021年5月,拜登政府决定终止《美韩导弹指南》,韩国将可以在允许的条件下发展各型导弹。澳大利亚则与美国在2021年9月签署备忘录,拟参与精确打击导弹的开发进程。2022年1月,美日在“2+2”会谈后发表声明称,双方“承诺增加美国和日本设施的联合/共同使用,包括储备军火和共用跑道,并将致力于加强日本自卫队在包括其西南诸岛在内地区的态势”。一旦美日完成相关工作,即可在台湾地区附近迅速部署和补充武器弹药。与特朗普一样,拜登在上台后也着手谋划继续提升台湾地区的拒止能力:2022年2月,批准对台出售价值1亿美元、为期5年的“爱国者”系统工程勤务支持;4月,宣布批准售台总价9500万美元的“‘爱国者’项目人员技术协助案”。随着拜登政府加快构建对华拒止性威慑力量体系,未来可能持续向台湾地区提供部分关键拒止能力。

Situational awareness is an important component of U.S. denial capabilities. Considering the geographical advantages of allies and partner countries, deepening intelligence sharing and cooperation with them has become a key part of the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China, as well as one of the most highly valued measures in the Biden administration’s “Indo-Pacific Strategy.” The United States has established relatively mature bilateral intelligence sharing and cooperation mechanisms with Japan, South Korea, Australia, and India, but the Biden administration is not satisfied with this and is seeking more multilateral intelligence partnerships. The underlying intent is to shape a coordinated deterrence posture against China and enhance U.S. denial capabilities. The United States, Japan, and Australia fully utilize their trilateral intelligence sharing mechanism to try to achieve “seamless cooperation.” Moreover, the Biden administration intends to further build a multilateral intelligence cooperation mechanism among the United States, Japan, India, and Australia through the Quadrilateral Security Dialogue (QUAD). On May 24, 2022, the United States, Japan, India, and Australia announced the launch of the  Indo-Pacific Partnership for Maritime Domain Awareness (IPMDA) after the QUAD Leaders’ Summit. They also said that this move will enhance the maritime situational awareness of countries in the Pacific, Southeast Asia, and the Indian Ocean in order to “maintain a free and open Indo-Pacific.”63 It is not difficult to see that this action by the Biden administration is actually exploring a way to build a quadrilateral intelligence sharing mechanism targeting China with the United States, Japan, India, and Australia. When the time is right, the United States may also pull South Korea into this multilateral mechanism. At such a time, China’s maritime military security will face more complex challenges.

态势感知能力是美国拒止能力的重要组成部分,考虑到盟友和伙伴国的区位优势,加深与它们的情报共享与合作成为美国对华拒止性威慑战略中的关键一环,也是拜登政府“印太战略”高度重视的措施之一。美国已经与日韩澳印四国建立了较为成熟的双边情报共享与合作机制,但拜登政府不满足于此,谋求更多的多边情报合作关系,其深层意图就是塑造针对中国的协作威慑态势并提升美国的拒止能力。美日澳充分利用三边情报共享机制,试图实现“无缝合作”,而拜登政府意欲通过四方安全对话进一步打造美日印澳四国的多边情报合作机制。2022年5月24日,美日印澳在四方安全对话领导人峰会后宣布推出“印太海域态势感知伙伴关系”(IPMDA),并称此举将提升太平洋、东南亚和印度洋各国的海域态势感知能力,以“维护自由而开放的印太”。不难看出,拜登政府此举实则是在为构建针对中国的美日印澳四边情报共享机制探路,在时机成熟的情况下,美国也可能拉韩国进入该多边机制。届时,中国的海上军事安全将面临更加复杂的挑战。

III. Constraints Facing the Construction of U.S. Deterrence by Denial Forces

三,美国拒止性威慑力量建设面临的制约因素

Although the construction of deterrence by denial forces by the Trump and Biden administrations has achieved some of the expected effects, the overall process has not been smooth. It has been subject to a considerable number of constraints at home and abroad. In the Western Pacific region, it is mainly constrained by the security interests of allies and partner countries. In the United States, there are fierce debates and contradictions among parties in Congress on how to better coordinate the buildup of denial forces.

特朗普和拜登两届政府的拒止性威慑力量建设虽然实现了一部分预期效用,但整个过程进行得并不顺利,在国内外都受到了相当多的制约。在西太地区,主要受盟友和伙伴国的安全利益制约;在美国国内,围绕如何更好地统筹拒止力量建设,包括国会在内的各方存在激烈争论和矛盾。

(i) Regional Countries Question the Necessity of Some U.S. Denial Capability Deployments
(一)地区国家对美国部分拒止能力部署的必要性存疑

The U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China places great importance on coordination with allies and partners in the Western Pacific region. In theory, with the express consent of treaty allies, the United States could deploy a variety of equipment at bases under its jurisdiction. As the U.S. deterrence strategy toward China shifts to deterrence by denial, the military value of allies will be greatly enhanced, which will benefit both the U.S. and its allies. At present, however, the treaty allies are still more cautious about attaching themselves to the United States. Instead of letting the United States deploy new equipment at will, they selectively allow the entry of some military equipment to enter their territories, and deny entry to equipment that may cause a sharp deterioration in the regional situation. We can consider land-based intermediate-range missiles as an example. Although the United States has consistently expressed its desire to deploy land-based intermediate-range missiles in the Western Pacific region since its withdrawal from the INF Treaty, the RAND Corporation believes that, as long as the current domestic political situations of the five U.S. treaty allies and the security trends in the region do not change drastically, the possibility of the allies accepting land-based intermediate-range missiles is very low.64 The main concern of the allies is their worry that accepting the deployment of ground-based intermediate-range missile systems in their own countries will be regarded as a very provocative action by China, thereby intensifying military and political confrontation with China. In addition, U.S. allies also fear getting caught up in a conflict between China and the U.S. that does not directly involve them.65 However, it must be noted that although it is difficult for the United States to directly deploy land-based intermediate-range missiles in allied bases, it could still push allies to produce intermediate-range missiles and other precision-guided weapons through technical cooperation. Although U.S. allies want the technology more than the weapons themselves, for the United States, technology transfers are just a tactic to win over allies or prevent them from developing their own technologies. It is difficult for the United States to transfer core and cutting-edge technologies to its allies and this goes completely against the fundamental interests of U.S. arms dealers who hope to make huge profits by selling arms. Therefore, in the context of this so-called technological cooperation, new contradictions will also arise between the United States and its allies.

美国的对华拒止性威慑战略高度重视与西太地区盟友和伙伴间的协同配合。理论上,在条约盟友的明示同意下,美国可以在其所辖基地内部署各种装备。随着美国对华威慑战略转向拒止性威慑,盟友的军事价值将得到大幅提高,这对美国及其盟友来说都是有利的。但目前来看,条约盟友对美国的拉拢仍较为慎重,没有让美国随心所欲地部署新装备,而是有选择地接受部分军事装备的进驻,拒绝可能急剧恶化地区局势的装备进入本国领土。以陆基中导为例,虽然美国自退出《中导条约》后就一直表达在西太地区部署陆基中导的愿望,但根据兰德公司的判断,只要美国五大条约盟友当前的国内政治状况和本地区安全趋势没有发生剧烈变化,盟友接纳陆基中导的可能性就非常低。盟友的主要考量在于担心接纳陆基中导系统在本国部署会被中国视为极具挑衅性的行动,进而加剧与中国的军事政治对抗。此外,美国的盟友也担心陷入中美两国之间但不直接涉及自身的冲突中。不过需要注意的是,虽然美国在盟友基地内直接部署陆基中导难度较大,但仍存在通过技术合作推动盟友自产中导和其他精确制导武器的可能性。尽管美国盟友更想要的是技术而非武器本身,但对美国来说,转让技术只是其拉拢盟友或阻止盟友自己研发技术的一种策略,美国很难把核心尖端技术转让给盟友,而且从根本上说这也违背了美国国内军火商希望通过出售军火赚得巨额利润的根本意图。因此,在所谓的技术合作背后,美国与其盟友之间也会产生新的矛盾。

In addition, the strategic perceptions of Asia-Pacific countries with regard to China differ from that of the United States and they deviate from the United States in their China policies. This will affect how closely these countries will follow the strategy of the United States.66 Even if allies and partners agree to deepen defense cooperation with the United States due to its coercion and inducements, these countries may also maintain only limited defense partnerships with the United States on the surface and send symbolic contradictory signals to its population. However, such countries will not take practical actions to confront China in full accordance with the wishes of the United States and will be even less willing to invest too much money to accelerate the development of military modernization.67

此外,亚太国家对中国的战略认知与美国存在差异,在对华政策方面与美国存在偏差,这会影响这些国家对美国的战略追随。即使未来盟友和伙伴国在美国的威逼利诱之下同意与其深化防务合作,这些国家也可能仅在表面上维持与美国的有限防务伙伴关系,向民众传递象征性的制衡信号,但不会完全按照美国的意愿采取实际行动来对抗中国,更不愿意投入过多资金来加速军事现代化发展。

(ii) Shortcomings in Denial Capabilities Make Inter-service Conflicts More Complicated and Difficult to Solve
(二)拒止能力存在的短板使军种间矛盾愈发复杂难解

In fact, the U.S. military has exposed some of its intrinsic shortcomings or deficiencies in the planning of its deterrence by denial against China. The U.S. military believes that military bases with fixed locations will be the main target of the opponent’s first round of strikes, so its deterrent force must rely on bases with more remote locations or missiles with longer ranges and stronger penetration capabilities launched by various platforms. However, there are not many air and naval bases and they can be easily targeted. Although land-based intermediate-range missiles can partially fill the shortfall in denial capability, they are limited in number and can only effectively strike certain types of targets, such as ships. Although as underwater launch platforms, submarines have greater survivability, they carry limited ammunition and cannot be easily reloaded in a battlefield environment. Only surface ships that carry a large amount of missiles and have high flexibility can carry out various tasks such as anti-missile, anti-ship, and even ground strikes. They are the backbone of the U.S. military presence in the Western Pacific region. However, the U.S. Navy is currently plagued by problems such as the insufficient number of capital ships, slow reform of the fleet structure, and weakened support capabilities. At the theater level, issues such as a lack of training and logistical pressures continue to plague the Indo-Pacific Command. Philip Davidson, the former commander of the Indo-Pacific Command, bluntly stated that problems such as high operational requirements, slow maintenance, a single training channel, and the lack of reserve reinforcements have limited the Indo-Pacific Command’s response capabilities.68 Therefore, although U.S. Indo-Pacific security commitments and new military concepts are constantly being updated, the improvement of the denial capability requires a longer-term process, and the balancing capabilities of the U.S. military in the region are still weak.

事实上,美军在谋划对华拒止性威慑时已经暴露了一些天然的不足或缺项。美军认为,位置固定的军事基地是对手首轮打击的主要目标,因此其威慑力量必须依赖位置更远的基地,抑或是各类平台发射的射程更远、突防能力更强的导弹。但空海军基地的数量很少,且很容易被锁定。陆基中导虽然可以部分填补拒止能力的空白,但其数量有限且仅能有效打击特定类型的目标如舰船。作为水下发射平台的潜艇生存性虽然更高,但其搭载的弹药有限,在战场环境中也不可能轻易重新装载。唯有水面舰艇载弹量大且灵活性强,可以遂行反导反舰甚至是对地打击等多种任务,是支撑美国在西太地区军事存在的主干力量。但美国海军目前受主力舰艇数量不足、舰队架构改革缓慢、保障能力减弱等问题困扰。在战区层面,缺乏训练、后勤压力等问题持续给印太司令部带来困扰。印太司令部前任司令戴维森曾直言,作战需求高、维修迟缓、训练途径单一以及预备增援部队欠缺等问题限制了印太司令部的反应能力。因此,尽管美国的印太安全承诺和新军事概念都在不断更新,但拒止能力提升需要一个较长期的过程,美军在该地区的军事制衡能力当前仍显乏力。

In this context, the different branches of the U.S. military are very likely to become enmeshed in heated debates in the process of building up denial forces for deterrence against China according to their respective development plans. The U.S. Navy is a core member of the builders of deterrence against China. With the support of a relatively ample budget, in order to make up for shortcomings, the U.S. Navy launched a new instructive version of the “30-year Shipbuilding Plan” in 2020. However, once the plan is implemented, in the future, the U.S. military will have to cut funding for other services such as the Army and troops stationed abroad to pay for the Navy’s significantly increased shipbuilding costs.69 If the budgets of other services are cut due to the shipbuilding plan, this will inevitably produce conflicts between the services, and the battle over military spending that has gone on for many years will intensify. The Navy’s cost-saving plan still involves a complex game between the different parties, and the U.S. DoD has been internally looking for alternative solutions to reflect the needs of the new national defense strategy and fleet structure, but there is still a great deal of uncertainty about these plans.

在此背景下,美军各军种依其发展规划在围绕对华威慑的拒止力量建设环节更容易陷入激烈争论。美国海军是对华威慑力量构建者中的核心成员。在相对充足预算的支持下,为了补齐短板,美国海军在2020年推出了具有指导意义的新版“30年造舰计划”。但该计划一旦付诸实施,美军未来将不得不削减陆军等其他军种和驻外部队的拨款,以支付海军大幅增加的造舰费用。一旦其他军种的预算因造舰计划被削减,势必挑起军种间矛盾,持续多年的军费争夺战将更趋白热化。而海军节约经费的方案目前仍涉及各方的复杂博弈,美国国防部内部也一直在寻找替代方案,以反映新的国防战略和舰队架构需要,但目前这些方案的不确定性仍然很大。

For a long time, the Air Force and the Navy believed that they were the main forces in the Indo-Pacific Command. They claimed to have mastered the integration process of the entire kill chain and that the Army should avoid duplication. However, the Army and the Marine Corps will never sit on the sidelines. Army Chief of Staff James McConville has repeatedly argued for the important role of the Army in regional conflicts on the grounds of responding to the “China threat” and wants to work with the Marine Corps to test new combat methods. With relatively limited defense expenditures, competing for the initiative in denial capability building has become an important way for the various services of the U.S. military to compete for funding. This puts the Air Force and the Navy in a more favorable situation with respect to the Army and the Marine Corps, but in order to ensure their own budget and status, the Army and the Marine Corps will continue to compete for greater shares of the budget through new technologies or new tactics. The resulting inter-service conflicts and disputes with regard to key military capabilities will also continue to play out.

长期以来,空海军认为自己才是印太司令部的主力,并宣称早就熟练掌握了整个杀伤链的整合流程,陆军应避免重复建设,但陆军和海军陆战队绝不会“坐以待毙”。陆军参谋长詹姆斯·麦康维尔(James McConville)曾多次以应对“中国威胁”为由辩明陆军在地区冲突的重要作用,并欲联合陆战队验证新的作战方式。在国防开支相对有限的情况下,争夺拒止能力建设主动权已经成为美军各军种争取经费的重要抓手。它使空海军处于比陆军和陆战队更有利的态势中,但为了确保自身预算和军种地位,陆军和海军陆战队也会不断借重新技术或新战法争取预算,而由此引发的军种间在关键军事能力上的矛盾和争端也将不断上演。

(iii) U.S. Politicians Are Dissatisfied with the Status Quo of Denial Capability Building
(三)美国政界对拒止能力建设现状并不满意

Although the U.S. military is the primary implementer of deterrence by denial, the U.S. political community is deeply involved in the entire process of denial capability building. Members of Congress have also frequently publicly expressed dissatisfaction with the status quo of denial capability building, and there are significant contradictions between the political community and the military over budget requests and the selection of key military capabilities.

虽然美军是拒止性威慑的主要执行者,但美国政界深度参与了拒止能力建设的全过程,国会议员也经常公开表示对拒止能力建设现状并不满意,政界与军方在预算申请、关键军事能力选择等问题上存在显著的矛盾。

As an important part of denial force construction, the development of missile defense systems is increasingly becoming an expensive task with huge challenges. The U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s five-year plan (FY2018–FY2023) has a budget of U.S. $46.7 billion, which is U.S. $13.7 billion more than the five-year plan during the Obama years.70 On March 28, 2022, the Biden administration submitted a defense budget request for FY 2023 totaling $813.3 billion to Congress. In this budget, the total budget request for missile defense reached U.S. $24.7 billion71, a huge increase of 20% over the previous fiscal year. Although the budget has reached a record high, Indo-Pacific Command still hopes that the DoD will increase investment in the development and deployment of air and missile defense systems in the Western Pacific region. However, many of the Missile Defense Agency’s budget requests have been rejected by Congress on the grounds that they need to be re-evaluated. The FY 2021 National Defense Authorization Act plans to allocate $76.8 million for the land-based “Aegis” system in Guam. However, Congress ultimately decided to cut these funds and called for a study of Guam’s defensive value.72 In addition, the DoD’s Office of Cost and Program Evaluation (CAPE) and Office of Net Assessment also opposed Indo-Pacific Command’s “Defend Guam” plan. They believe that China’s long-range missiles do not represent a sufficient threat to Guam and stress that the DoD should deploy troops based on military realities.

作为拒止力量建设的重要环节,发展导弹防御系统愈益成为一项花费高昂且挑战巨大的任务。美国导弹防御局拟定的五年计划(2018—2023财年)预算高达467亿美元,比奥巴马时期的五年计划预算多出137亿美元。2022年3月28日,拜登政府向国会提交了总额为8133亿美元的2023财年国防预算申请,其中用于导弹防御的预算申请总额高达247亿美元,比上一财年增长20%,增幅巨大。尽管预算上已创新高,印太司令部仍希望国防部在西太地区的防空反导系统研发部署上追加投入,但导弹防御局的诸多预算请求都被国会以需要重新评估为由驳回。2021财年《国防授权法案》计划为关岛的陆基“宙斯盾”系统拨款7680万美元。然而,国会最终决定去掉这笔资金,并要求对关岛的防卫价值进行研究。此外,国防部成本与计划评估办公室(CAPE)和净评估办公室也反对印太司令部“保卫关岛”的计划,它们认为中国的远程导弹不足以威胁关岛,并强调国防部应根据军事实际来部署部队。

In the face of increasing demands for military spending and a less-than-optimistic denial capability building situation, many U.S. congressmen have expressed their dissatisfaction. Adam Smith, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, bluntly stated that many of the ideas in the 2018 National Defense Strategy were “overly ambitious.” These ideas were not implemented until Biden took office.73 Mike Gallagher, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, argued that the DoD’s biggest problem is that it did not have the conceptual framework necessary to ensure defense spending would generate the needed denial capabilities and resolve inter-service budgetary inconsistencies.74 At present, many of the problems exposed by the military in the process of denial capability building are still difficult to solve in the short term. The continued worsening of these problems will also aggravate the concerns and dissatisfaction of the U.S. political community with the slow progress of military force construction and intensify the conflicts between them and military leaders on issues such as budget applications and military development plans.

面对逐年上涨的军费需求和不甚乐观的拒止能力建设情况,许多美国国会议员表达了自己的不满。众议院武装力量委员会主席亚当·史密斯(Adam Smith)曾直言,2018年《国防战略》中的很多想法“过于雄心勃勃”,这些想法至拜登上台都没有实现。众议院武装力量委员会委员迈克·加拉格尔(Mike Gallagher)则认为,国防部最大的问题是它没有必要的概念框架来确保国防开支产生所需要的拒止能力,并解决军种间的预算矛盾。目前来看,军方在拒止能力建设过程中暴露出来的诸多问题仍较难在短期内得到解决,这些问题的不断恶化也将加重美国政界对军力建设进展缓慢的担忧和不满,激化他们与军方领导人在预算申请、军种发展规划等问题上的矛盾。

VI. The Impact of the U.S. Strategy of Deterrence by Denial on China’s Security

四,美国拒止性威慑战略对中国安全的影响

The root of the U.S. strategy of Deterrence by Denial against China is its consistent philosophy of “absolute security” after the Cold War. This will seriously threaten the already fragile strategic stability between China and the United States. If U.S. allies in the Western Pacific region continue to cooperate with its denial capability building, the “coordinated deterrence” that the United States intends to shape may be transformed into “joint coercion.” This poses a huge threat to Chinese efforts to actively shape the regional security environment.

美国对华拒止性威慑战略的根源是其在冷战后一以贯之的“绝对安全”理念,这会严重威胁中美本就脆弱的战略稳定性。如果美国的西太地区盟友持续配合其拒止能力建设,美国意欲塑造的“协作威慑”有可能转化为“共同胁迫”。这对中国积极塑造地区安全环境的努力构成了巨大威胁。

(i) The U.S. Concept of “Absolute Security” Threatens the Fragile Sino-U.S. Strategic Stability
(一)美国“绝对安全”理念威胁中美脆弱的战略稳定性

The United States’ understanding and application of its deterrence by denial strategy have already broken out of the mold of the traditional defense-oriented deterrence by denial model. Its ideological root lies in the concept of “absolute security.” On the one hand, this is determined by the superior geographical location of the United States. During the Cold War, the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial led to passive defense measures such as local civil defense construction and missile silo reinforcement with the aim of minimizing the damage caused by a Soviet nuclear strike and preserving its own nuclear force. After the disintegration of the Soviet Union, the United States was no longer subject to any large-scale military threats from sovereign states. Therefore, the United States shifted the practice of its deterrence by denial strategy from its homeland to overseas, where it seeks to limit the threat to the homeland or even the territories of allies based on the idea of forward defense. On the other hand, the United States, as the global hegemon, has always claimed that it has the responsibility and obligation to protect the security of allies and deter potential adversaries. In fact, this constitutes its self-defined security frontier. This geopolitical conception of the United States incorporates its “dominant position” in the security order in the Western Pacific into its global hegemony. Although the United States must carefully consider intervention on the Asian mainland, especially military intervention, due to different situations, the principle of the United States has always been that it will never allow the powers on the Asian mainland to challenge its control.75 Accordingly, the United States’ deterrence by denial against China is actually carried out under the banner of “maintaining regional military security and balance,” ignoring China’s core interests and seeking its own rapid military expansion to ensure absolute control over the regional situation and escalation options.

美国对拒止性威慑战略的理解与应用已经突破了传统意义上偏重防御的拒止性威慑模式,其思想根源在于“绝对安全”理念。一方面,这是由美国的优越地理位置决定的。冷战时期,美国的拒止性威慑战略牵引了本土的民防建设、导弹发射井加固等被动防御措施,以此最大程度限制苏联核打击带来的损害,保全自身核力量。苏联解体后,美国本土不再受到任何来自主权国家的大规模军事威胁,因此美国将拒止性威慑战略的实践地由本土转向了海外,以前置防御的思路谋求将威胁限制在本土甚至是盟友领土以外。另一方面,作为世界霸主的美国一直声称其负有保护盟国安全,威慑潜在对手的责任与义务,这事实上构成了其自定义的安全疆域。美国的这种地缘政治想象将其在西太地区安全秩序中的“主导地位”纳入全球霸权之中。尽管对亚洲大陆的介入尤其是军事介入因形势不同而需慎重考虑,但美国的原则始终是绝不允许亚洲大陆强国挑战其控制权。据此,美国的对华拒止性威慑实际上是打着“维持地区军事安全与平衡”的旗号,漠视中国的核心利益,寻求自身快速的军事扩张以确保对地区态势和升级选项的绝对控制。

The strategic stability between China and the United States is inherently a series of complex disputes. After Trump took office, there were still some contradictions in the U.S. strategic attitude towards China.76 In recent years, the United States has increasingly sought to draw China into nuclear arms control negotiations based on geopolitical interests, but has not acknowledged the de facto strategic stability relationship between the two countries.77 However, China is also continuously strengthening its strategic forces and building capabilities and is seeking strategic dialogue with the United States through multiple platforms to discuss crisis management and conflict de-escalation measures. Therefore, from the perspective of global nuclear stability, there is a relatively fragile strategic stability between China and the United States. However, the development of many deterrence by denial methods by the United States in recent years, such as the development of intermediate-range missiles, anti-missile systems, strategic anti-submarine capabilities, and space interception, has affected China’s second nuclear strike capability, which in turn has had a substantial impact on China’s nuclear deterrence capability.

中美两国的战略稳定性本就存在一系列复杂的争论。特朗普上台后,美国对中国的战略态度依然存在些许矛盾性。近年来,美国愈益从地缘政治利益出发谋求将中国拉入核军控谈判,但并没有承认两国事实上的战略稳定关系。不过,中国也在不断加强战略力量和能力建设,并通过多个平台寻求与美国进行战略对话,探讨危机管控与冲突降级举措。因此,从全球核稳定的角度看,中美之间存在着较为脆弱的战略稳定性。但是,美国近年来的很多拒止性威慑手段,如中导、反导系统、战略反潜、太空拦截等领域的发展,已经影响到中国二次核打击能力,进而对中国核威慑能力产生了实质性影响。

Based on the asymmetry of strategic power between China and the United States, since the Trump administration, the United States has, from a perspective of technical analysis, taken strategic opportunism as its guide for weakening China’s strategic power. Strategic opportunism is a means of suppressing the nuclear retaliatory capabilities of medium-level nuclear countries on the basis of the relatively close proximity of comprehensive national strength, with the aim to seize favorable opportunities to achieve maximum strategic interests.78 In order to ensure its own second-strike capability, a large part of China’s land-based missiles with both nuclear and conventional capabilities are launched from mobile road-based platforms.79 However, during the launch process, the launch vehicle must be in a fixed position, at which time it is most vulnerable. Because of this short window of vulnerability, the attacking weapon must either be very close to the target or very fast. Considering that the flight speed of the various types of intermediate-range missiles currently developed by the United States is above Mach 3, if the United States deploys land-based intermediate missiles in a forward position, it will pose a huge threat to China’s second-strike capability With the rapid development of emerging U.S. military technologies in recent years, its intelligence collection, reconnaissance, surveillance, and precision strike capabilities have rapidly improved, improving the effectiveness of the U.S. in implementing damage limitation on China.80 The United States has been developing technology that can track missiles at all times, aiming to facilitate a shift from purely combat mechanisms to early denial operations. With the formation of a resilient space system and the extensive application of AI technology in multi-intelligence fusion analysis, it is possible for the United States to achieve real-time target tracking of missiles and their vehicles. If coupled with increasingly mature booster and mid-stage interception technologies, China’s nuclear counterattack capability is likely to be severely weakened in the future. As a result, the balance of strategic stability will also tip to the U.S. side, which is very dangerous for China.81

基于中美战略实力的不对称,自特朗普政府开始,美国就从技术分析角度出发将战略机会主义作为削弱中国战略力量的指导方针。战略机会主义是美国在综合国力较为接近的基础上压制中等核国家核报复能力的一种思路,旨在抓住有利时机实现最大程度的战略利益。为了保证自身的二次打击能力,中国很大一部分核常兼备的陆基导弹采用公路机动发射。但是,在发射过程中,发射车必须固定在阵地上,而这段时间内的发射车最为脆弱。由于此易受攻击的窗口时间很短,攻击武器要么必须离目标非常近,要么速度必须非常快。考虑到美国目前发展的各型中导飞行速度大多在3马赫以上,美国如果前置部署陆基中导,其对中国二次打击能力将构成巨大的威胁。随着近年来美国新兴军事技术的快速发展,其情报搜集、侦察、监视、精确打击能力迅速提升,提高了美国对中国实施损害限制的能效。美国一直在发展可以对导弹进行全时段跟踪的技术,旨在促进作战形式从纯粹的战斗机制向早期的拒止行动转变。随着弹性太空体系的成形及人工智能技术在多元情报融合分析上的广泛应用,美国有可能实现对导弹及其载具目标的实时跟踪。如果配以日益成熟的助推段和中段拦截技术,未来中国的核反击能力很可能被严重削弱,战略稳定的天平也会倒向美国一侧,这对中国来说是非常危险的。

(ii) U.S. Forward Deployment of Denial Capabilities Will Impact China’s Efforts to Shape the Regional Security Environment
(二)美国前沿部署拒止能力会冲击中国塑造地区安全环境的努力

The “real-time nature” emphasized in the concept of deterrence by denial as well as the ability to make an adversary’s offensive action impossible, requires that the deterrent effect be as far from the homeland as possible. This will force the adversary to take the effectiveness of denial into its judgment of benefits. Following from this, it is extremely important to roll out a deterrence by denial network in front of the opponent. For the United States, relying on front-line allies can is a good way to maintain the long-term effectiveness of its deterrence by denial against China. To this end, the United States goes as far as to deliberately create security dilemmas among countries in the region. The “THAAD” incident is an example. As Chinese scholars have said, the most realistic issue with the introduction of “THAAD” into South Korea is to force China to prioritize South Korea and other U.S. allies in the Asia-Pacific region, which undermines strategic mutual trust and cooperation between China and South Korea.82 The U.S. deployment of the “THAAD” system in South Korea has partially transformed into a driving force for maintaining the U.S.-South Korea alliance, driving a spiraling escalation in the security dilemma between China and South Korea in a short period of time. A report by the Congressional Research Service pointed out that the United States uses missile defense systems to strengthen alliances, protect allies and partners, and force American allies into a position where they must confront China (转而必须对付中国).83 In the process of deploying denial capabilities in the Western Pacific region, the United States adopts a tough attitude towards China, which not only directly causes Sino-U.S. relations to deteriorate, but also, by affecting the relationships between China and neighboring countries, indirectly strengthens the pattern of confrontation between China and the United States and increases the difficulty of crisis management between China and the United States.

拒止性威慑概念中强调的“实时性”,以及使对手进攻行动无法展开的能力都要求威慑效果尽可能远离本土,将拒止效能强加于对手对收益的判断。基于此,在对手当面一线铺开拒止性威慑网络就显得十分重要。对美国来说,借重一线盟友可以很好地保持美国对华拒止性威慑的长期有效性。为此,美国甚至故意制造地区国家间的安全困境。以“萨德”事件为例,如国内学者所说,“萨德”入韩最现实的问题在于迫使中国将韩国等美国亚太盟国设为优先打击目标,损害中国与韩国的战略互信和合作。美国在韩国部署“萨德”系统,部分转化成维系美韩联盟的驱动力,在短时间内驱动中韩两国安全困境螺旋上升。美国国会研究服务处的报告曾指出,美国使用导弹防御体系加强联盟关系,保护盟友和伙伴,也迫使美国盟友转而必须对付中国。美国在西太地区部署拒止能力的过程中对华态度强硬,不仅直接恶化了中美关系,而且通过影响中国与周边国家的关系,间接地强化了中美之间的对抗格局,增加了中美两国间的危机管控难度。

The logic of denial is receiving more and more attention in strategic interactions between the United States and its allies, with the rapid proliferation of emerging technologies as an important driver. The Federation of American Scientists (FAS) believes that advanced technologies such as high-energy lasers, low-cost high-altitude persistent sensing technology, and AI can be called revolutionary emerging technologies in the military field.84 Given the important role of emerging technologies in the transformation of the U.S. combat system of the future, the United States continues to break through restrictions and shape its dominant position at the expense of the stability of the international arms control system and the balance of power among major powers. This indicates that the technological proliferation carried out by the United States in the Indo-Pacific region and its military cooperation with allies will continue to deepen for a long period of time in the future, and the incentive for allies to cooperate with the United States may further increase. At the same time, there is insufficient willingness to manage the risks arising from the proliferation of emerging technologies. Accordingly, the conventional arms race in the Asia-Pacific region is likely to further intensify, which also adds more variables to China’s efforts to jointly manage the risk of conflicts with neighboring countries.

在美国与盟友之间的战略互动中,拒止的逻辑越来越受到关注,一个重要的驱动因素是新兴技术的迅速扩散。美国科学家联合会(FAS)认为,高能激光器、低成本高空持久性传感技术、人工智能等先进技术,可以被称为军事领域具有革命性的新兴技术。鉴于新兴技术在美国未来作战体系转型中的重要作用,美国不断冲破限制,以国际军控体系的稳定性和大国间的力量平衡为代价,塑造自己的优势地位。这预示着美国在印太地区的技术扩散及与盟友的军事合作将在未来较长一段时间内持续深化,盟友与美国合作的动力可能进一步增强,同时却缺乏足够的意愿去管控新兴技术扩散产生的风险问题。据此,亚太地区的常规军备竞赛存在进一步加剧的可能,这也给中国寻求联合周边国家共同进行冲突风险管控增加了更多的变数。

(iii) The One-sided Logic of the U.S. in Pursuing Coercion Against China Will Fundamentally Endanger Sino-U.S. Strategic Mutual Trust
(三)美国极力追求对华胁迫的片面逻辑会从根本上危害中美战略互信

Like deterrence by punishment, the success of deterrence by denial also depends on the formation of a consensus arrangement with the adversary that gives some kind of confirmation to the effectiveness of the deterrence, that is, a political agreement with the adversary. In the process of strategic stability formation during the Cold War, this political compromise between the United States and the Soviet Union, represented by a series of strategic arms control treaties in the 1970s, ultimately played a key role. Today, if the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China is to be truly effective, a major theoretical problem is how to avoid overly aggravating China while strengthening its own denial force construction and security commitment to its allies. However, at present, the United States has constantly emphasized the denial capability and force construction, overly emphasized the security protection of its allies or constraining allies to cooperate in denial against China, treated China’s regional security concerns in a negative manner, or even exerted coercion against China. As a result, the “deterrence” effect of its deterrence strategy will inevitably fade.

拒止性威慑和惩罚性威慑一样,其成功也有赖于与对手之间形成某种确认威慑效力的共识性安排,即与对手达成某种政治协议。在冷战时期战略稳定的形成过程中,以20世纪70年代的系列战略性军控条约为代表,美苏之间的这种政治妥协最终起到了关键作用。如今,对美国来说,其对华拒止性威慑战略要想取得真正效果,理论上的一大难题即在于如何在加强自身拒止力量建设和对盟友安全承诺的同时,避免过度刺激中国。但目前来看,美国不断强调拒止能力和力量建设,过分突出对盟友的安全保护或绑定盟友进行对华拒止合作,消极对待中国的地区安全关切,甚至极力施加对华胁迫,其威慑战略的“威慑”效果也就必然渐趋淡化。

The U.S.-Japan alliance is an example. Japan shares common interests with the United States on the issue of balancing China and tries to benefit from regional frictions by strengthening U.S.-Japan security cooperation. However, there is a clear asymmetry in the interests of the two parties.85 On the one hand, the United States wants to avoid crossing the threshold to trigger a missile attack on China if at all possible and will make all efforts to avoid an escalation in the conflict with China. 86 On the other hand, Japan must effectively reduce the possibility of a missile attack on its homeland and require the United States to intervene as soon as possible. In view of this contradiction, Japan once questioned the reliability of the United States in the so-called “containment of China’s rise” and the necessity of joining a balancing alliance. To solidify its security commitments, the United States has turned to highlighting the need for deterrence by denial capabilities represented by missile defense cooperation. With U.S. support, Japan has accelerated its pursuit of a comprehensive deterrence by denial capability.87 A direct consequence of this is an increase in the possibility of Japan interfering in regional security affairs, especially Taiwan Strait affairs, in the name of “exercising the right of collective self-defense.” On the surface, this looks like a move by the United States to fulfill its security commitments to Japan, but in fact it indulges Japanese involvement in regional security affairs for the purpose of better cooperation with the United States in “intimidation.” However, this aggravates the risk of escalating confrontation in the Western Pacific region.

以美日同盟为例,日本在制衡中国的问题上与美国有着共同利益,试图通过强化日美安全合作为日本在地区摩擦中获益。但双方的利益存在明显的不对称。一方面,美国希望尽可能不要触发对中国进行导弹攻击的门槛,极力避免与中国之间的冲突升级;另一方面,日本必须有效减少本土可能受到的导弹攻击,并要求美国第一时间介入。鉴于这种矛盾,日本一度质疑美国在所谓“遏制中国崛起”方面的可靠性和加入制衡联盟的必要性。为稳固安全承诺,美国转而突出以导弹防御合作为代表的拒止性威慑能力的必要性。在美国的支持下,日本加快了追求全面拒止性威慑能力的步伐。由此带来的一个直接后果就是增加了日本以“行使集体自卫权”为名干涉地区安全事务特别是台海事务的可能性。美国此举表面上是为了兑现对日本的安全承诺,实则是放纵其插足地区安全事务,以更好地配合美国进行“威逼”,但这加剧了西太地区对抗升级的风险。

Military forces capable of both offense and defense are important tools for the United States to pursue its global strategy and will also encourage the United States to pursue its hegemonic goals of ensuring its own absolute security and intervening in regional security affairs at will. The deep purpose of U.S. deterrence by denial against China is to use all military deterrence means other than the direct deployment of troops to deter China from achieving complete reunification and consolidating its military dominance in the Western Pacific region. However, the actual situation is that the more China is confronted by military intimidation by the United States and its cooperation with allies, the more likely it is to intensify efforts to build up military capabilities and strive to break out of this military intimidation, thus making it difficult for the United States to achieve its desired effect of the deterrence by denial that it is working extremely hard for. This is the greatest paradox inherent in the United States’ forward deployment of deterrence by denial in the Indo-Pacific region and it will inevitably lead to the ultimate failure of Us deterrence by denial against China.

攻守兼备的军事力量是美国推行全球战略的重要工具,也会促进美国追求保证自身绝对安全和随意插手地区安全事务的霸权目标。美国对华拒止性威慑的深层目的就是动用除了直接出兵以外的所有军事威慑手段,慑止中国实现完全统一,稳固自己在西太地区的军事主导权。但实际情势是,中国越是面临美国及其与盟国合作带来的军事胁迫,越有可能加大力度推进军事能力建设,致力于打破这种军事胁迫,从而使美国极力推进的拒止性威慑难以达成理想效果。这就是美国在印太地区前置推进拒止性威慑内含的最大悖论,也必然导致美国对华拒止性威慑的最终失效。

Conclusion

结语

Judging from the recommendations of the American strategic academic community, the main strategic texts of the United States, and the practices of the Trump administration and the Biden administration in recent years, deterrence by denial has become the preferred option for U.S. military strategy and its military containment of China. The U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial is guided by the concept of “absolute security” and is already very different from the traditional deterrence by denial that focuses on defense. What the United States calls regional defense is in fact obviously offensive. The U.S. military mainly relies on itself and its allies to strengthen forward defense and deploy a precision strike network along the “first island chain” and to configure an integrated anti-missile system and optimize reserve forces in the “second island chain,” so as to maintain a distributed force posture in the Western Pacific region to comprehensively control the regional situation. The fundamental goals of the U.S. strategy of deterrence by denial against China are to prevent China from launching any military action that the United States sees as a threat to its regional dominance and to maintain the overall advantages of the United States from technology to equipment to combat systems by improving and reshaping the backbone forces of deterrence by denial.

从近年来美国战略学界的建议、美国的主要战略文本,以及特朗普政府和拜登政府的实践看,拒止性威慑已经成为美国军事战略及其对华军事遏制的优先选项。“绝对安全”理念牵引下的美国拒止性威慑战略与传统上侧重防御的拒止性威慑早已大相径庭。美国所谓的地区防御事实上带有明显的进攻性色彩。美军主要依靠自身及盟友沿“第一岛链”强化前沿防御并部署精确打击网络,在“第二岛链”配置综合反导系统并优化后备力量,从而在西太地区维持分布式兵力态势以全面掌控地区形势。美国对华拒止性威慑战略的根本目标是阻止中国发动任何在美国看来会威胁其地区优势地位的军事行动,并通过改良和重塑拒止性威慑的主干力量来维持美国从技术到装备再到作战体系的全面优势。

At present, China must actively cultivate a favorable environment for the development of its military power, develop new technologies and equipment, respond to the military coercion arising from the United States’ practice of deterrence by denial against China, and reduce various actual or potential strategic risks. China must accurately grasp the changes in national security and military struggles, pay close attention to changes in technology, warfare, and opponents, and effectively break open the U.S. strategy of deterrence of denial in the process of building a strong military with Chinese characteristics. China must take multiple measures to prevent the United States from enhancing key denial capabilities in the area surrounding China, especially the anti-missile defense network. To the greatest extent possible, the Chinese and U.S. militaries should use existing platforms to effectively transmit information and prevent misjudgments.

当前,中国需要主动培塑有利于军力发展的良好环境,发展新技术装备,应对美国对华拒止性威慑战略实践造成的军事胁迫,降低各类现实或潜在战略风险。中国要准确把握国家安全和军事斗争形势变化,紧盯科技之变、战争之变、对手之变,在走中国特色强军之路的进程中,有力破解美国的拒止性威慑战略;多措并举遏阻美国在中国周边提升关键拒止能力尤其是反导防御网;中美两军应尽可能利用现有平台有效传递信息,防止误判。

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Cite This Page

陈曦 (Chen Xi)葛腾飞 (Ge Tengfei) (2022). "An Analysis of the United States’ Deterrence by Denial Strategy Against China [美国对华拒止性威慑战略论析]". Interpret: China, Original work published September 16, 2022, https://interpret.csis.org/translations/an-analysis-of-the-united-states-deterrence-by-denial-strategy-against-china/

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