China has problems/vulnerabilities too. You might go investigate and read about them. They are not ten feet tall. They are 60% dependant on Middle East oil, which comes to them by tanker across seas over which they have no control. Sure, the immediate region ofF their coast is well protected by land based missiles, diesel subs, and missile craft flotillas. But, past the First Island Chain, and out in the Indian Ocean, we still hold sway. They can not (yet) build advanced jet engines of the type which we have only low numbers of. So, their numbers are even lower. They have a lot of internal political unrest...potential breakaway regions which they devote energy to trying to control. They are surrounded by hostile neighbors (India in particular.) They have few friends, and their only ally is North Korea. We have friendly relations with much of the region.
So, they fight alone, while we can martial help. And so on. Go read up on China and its problems. "Know your enemy." It is far from a one-sided affair.
Which is actually why it is so dangerous. Nations go to war when they figure they can win. At this point, both sides see exploitable vulnerabilities with the other, and an outcome that is far from fixed. Deterrence is what is needed most. One side or the other needs to feel that a war is unwinnable. So, both sides spar, hoping to demonstrate exactly that. China builds mighty missiles. We demonstrate high tech superiority. And on and on. If it can be made perfectly clear to China that they face overwhelming opposition--not just from the US, but from the bulk of the world...they will have to fight all of us to take away Taiwanese freedom--then China will rumble about Taiwan forever, but not actually act. If they perceive they face a lone enemy against favorable odds, you will see them exercise their military options.
I am along for the ride, and have no illusions about my species. So, it will not surprise me to wake up and read we are at war. Until then, deterrence is working. Enjoy life now. That, you have control over. The future, you don't.
So what will we fight with ? Numbers so low with the F 35 flying pig. Problems with no replacement engines,short range low cannon rounds to fight with. The Chinese could not have put us in a worst situation if they had been in charge themselves.
As of this moment, the current standard is:
1 F/A-18F squadron
3 F/A-18E squadrons
1 EA-18G squadron
1 E-2D squadron
1 MH-60S squadron
1 MH-60 R squadron
1 C-2 detachment
This will very shortly (weeks/a month or so) change to having F-35C squadron (or squadrons) replace F/A-18E squadron (or squadrons) and a CMV-22 detatchment replace the C-2. Probably only one fighter squadron will swap out to start, since F-35 numbers are still low. Don't know what the "ultimate" ratio is, but I suspect 1 F-18F and one F-18E and 2 F-35C squadrons is desired. USS Carl Vinson has already deployed with one F-35C squadron aboard in place of one E squadron. It is currently the only carrier to do so.
In a short time, the F/A-18 E and F squadrons will get Block III machines, with conformal external fuel tanks extending their range.
A bit further down the road, we will add MQ-25 Stingrays.
I thought F-18E/F replaced them? Anyway to learn what are the compositions of the active air wings?