A Navy spokesperson declined to comment when asked on Monday what steps the service was taking to protect its vessels from attacks by unmanned boats and aircraft, from Iran, China, Russia, and other adversaries because the Navy does not discuss its force protection measures and future operations, nor does the service speculate on hypothetical scenarios.
China’s People’s Liberation Army is likely watching the war between Russia and Ukraine closely, as its strategists have long included lessons from foreign wars into its military doctrine, said retired Navy Capt. Thomas Shugart, a military innovation expert with the Center for a New American Security think tank in Washington, D.C.
“That being said, it’s hard to know if this Ukrainian drone attack will make China more interested in unmanned surface vessels, as the PLA is already quite focused on the large-scale development of unmanned vehicles of all types,” Shugart told Task & Purpose. “Certainly, the use of surprise in an attack such as this would already be consistent with the PLA’s long-time focus on sudden, surprise strikes against adversary facilities and forces.”
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