Although you might expect such notions from Leftist lunatics, it’s still breathtaking when they get announced.

from Asia Times

Australia is set to buy smart sea mines with a hard eye on China, a procurement most likely driven by changing notions of sea control, unclear prospects of acquiring nuclear submarines under AUKUS and renewed interest in having indigenous mine warfare capabilities.

This week, Sydney Morning Herald (SMH) reported that Australia will spend up to US$698 million to purchase an unspecified number of smart sea mines from an unnamed European unmanned weapons supplier; Italy and Spain are Europe’s leading sea mine manufacturers. 

The report states that the Australian Department of Defense (DOD) intends to purchase sophisticated multi-influence seabed mines that are triggered by acoustic, magnetic and pressure signatures of passing warships and can be turned on and off to allow the passage of friendly ships.

“Defense is accelerating the acquisition of smart sea mines, which will help to secure sea lines of communication and protect Australia’s maritime approaches… A modern sea mining capability is a significant deterrent to potential aggressors,” said the Australian DOD in a statement.

Retired Australian naval officer and mine warfare expert Greg Mapson notes in the SMH report that sea mines sunk more ships in World War II than all other means combined, describing them as “the most effective weapons system ever deployed in maritime warfare.”

“The sea mine is an incredibly flexible weapon system, offering both offensive and defensive options to government,” Mapson adds.

He also emphasizes the psychological effect of sea mines, noting that “they can lay in wait on the seabed for months, are incredibly difficult to find once they are laid and are always waiting for a potential victim to stray too close.”

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