China threatens Japanese warship with guided missiles over island dispute
Last week a Chinese warship pointed its missile guidance system at a Japanese destroyer in an unmistakable show of aggression, the Japanese Ministry of Defense announced today.
The brief report out of Tokyo cites a January 30 event where a type 053 Chinese frigate locked its “sixth fire control radar” onto a Japanese helicopter equipped vessel out of Yokosuka. Japan has two helicopter carriers, and they are the largest vessels in the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force. If it was one of these it was likely the Hyûga (DDH-181) whose home port is naval base Yokosuka.
The fire-control radar used by the Chinese ship is employed specifically to help combat systems achieve a “firing solution,” the complex calculation required to hit a target. It’s a very narrow, focused beam of radar, and there’s no mistaking its intention.