The past few months, Chinese military have been having back-to-back combat drills on how to deal with the U.S. Navy. Oftentimes, they are ill-at-ease with the prospect of U.S. Navy spy planes which are just waiting to get signals and data on their activities.
Recent news says that Taiwan will be getting upgraded F-16V Viper Jets and soon F-35s might be part of Taipei's arsenal. More so is the U-2 that spied on Chinese activities on several occasions. Most of the time, the Chinese would threaten shooting it down whenever their hex codes were questionable, reported Eurasian Times.
One of most capable of the U.S. Navy's surveillance is the Boeing P-8 Poseidon maritime surveillance with anti-surface and submarine warfare capabilities. They have been flying and gathering intelligence in the Indo-Pacific region.
Incidents in the South and the East China Sea has seen the Poseidon leave its base in Kadena, Japan to recon and do surveillance mission. Recently, they've been armed with Harpoon anti-ship missiles on several missions.
The Chinese Navy is not happy with any plane that carries the AGM-84 Harpoon ship killer, next to the Indian made BrahMos missiles. Both are the most feared by the People's Liberation Army Navy (PLAN) that can sink their ships.
One main difference between the BrahMos is it is equipped on Indian vessels patrolling the South China Sea. But the Harpoon equipping Japanese, South Korea, and Taiwan that making China mad because their ships will become missile fodder. The PLAN likes to bully ill-equipped navies, though not those with the U.S. anti-ship missile are worried them.
The Poseidon is not relegated to recon only. It has external hardpoints with 5-internal weapons bays equipped. A variety of anti-ship weapons like missiles and torpedoes that are specialized for anti-submarine and surface ship warfare. The High Altitude Anti-Submarine Warfare Weapon Capability kit (HAAWC) strapped to the Mk-54 torpedoes adds stand-off functional at high altitudes.
Another function is fielding mines that have been ignored as a major anti-ship system. The addition of the Poseidon has given the U.S. Navy an unprecedented advantage over the PLAN that has no equivalent system.
For the PLAN, the Poseidon's, and all the hardware, with its capabilities make lethal in the field, more than an airwing. Armed with ECM counter-measures to protect it if detected early, blunting, or destroying intruders with its weapons or other systems.
China is wary of the plane because it cannot attack as the SCS is hotly contested by many.
Many global forces have acquired it but only if they are allies. America has the most units, but strict export and keeping tech specs a secret includes the UK, Australia, Norway, New Zealand, South Korea, and India that is serious about maxing it out.
A derivative of the Poseidon is for India called the P-8I Neptune that is similar to the Navy version but maxed out for land recon. On the Indian spy and recon, Nepture is a Magnetic Anomaly Detector (MAD) and the Telephonics APS-143C(V)3 multi-mode radar which is far better than the knockoff AWACs made by China.
The Neptune is on Ladakh recon and surveillance, it was first used in Doklam in recon including battle management. It acquitted itself well in Dokam against Chine in 2017.
This U.S. Navy spy plane improved the chances of India to strike back and keep enemies at bay.