In the command centre of the American DDG (USS Long Island Tea) threat assessment was calmly under way. All hell was breaking loose but nothing thankfully seemed to be coming directly their way. The Chinese air threat was directed as the Western Taiwanese destroyers and the ECM painted a disturbing background noise that stopped effective communications with the supporting carrier task force. They knew help would be on the way given the initiative of their air assets, nothing could take them out, at worst they would be only temporarily blinded. The task was to survive until it appeared. Suddenly a junior operator yelled: "It's the tanker, it's done it again, no wait they are Chinese warships. Vampire! Vampire! Six confirmed incoming."
The ambushers: relatively modern Chinese missile destroyers.
Automatic systems detected and responded with anti-missile and anti-ship missiles, remarkable given the fantastically short response times. A fact not missed on the Chinese commander, despite conducting a brilliant ambush, the DDG had fired two Harpoons on what must be only partial locks at best, something way beyond his ships capabilities. The calmness of the US command centre however was broken when a second call of "Vampire, Vampire" confirmed an additional six ground to sea (old but improved Silkworms) launched from mainland China. The tale was next to be in the telling and the aerodynamics of flight between complex systems. Today was certainly business.