Author Topic: Taiwan  (Read 3169 times)

G M

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Re: ET: Taiwan expands definition of first strike
« Reply #100 on: October 06, 2022, 07:53:34 AM »
They better be working on some nukes.


aiwan Expands ‘1st Strike’ Definition, Will Retaliate Against CCP Air Incursions
By Andrew Thornebrooke October 5, 2022 Updated: October 5, 2022biggersmaller Print


Taiwan is expanding its definition of a “first strike” for the purposes of determining whether to militarily retaliate against Chinese aggression, according to a top defense official.

The government of Taiwan now will consider significant incursions into its airspace by Chinese aircraft and drones to constitute a first strike in the same manner as a missile attack, defense minister Chiu Kuo-cheng told lawmakers on Oct. 5.

Chiu said the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) recent aggression necessitated the expanded definition. He added that CCP crossings of the median line, the midpoint of the Taiwan Strait, are an effort to create a new norm for intimidation and harassment.

“The median line was supposed to be a tacit agreement for everyone,” Chiu said. “That tacit agreement has been destroyed.”

The median line was decided upon as a buffer zone by the United States in the 1950s as a means of de-escalating conflict between communist China and Taiwan. Since then, both sides generally have respected the boundary.

However, in the past several months, CCP forces under Xi Jinping have initiated an aggressive campaign to “normalize” a military presence on Taiwan’s side of the waterway.

Taiwan previously held that it wouldn’t strike militarily against China unless China struck first. Until now, that meant that CCP forces would need to strike the island with a missile.

Chiu said on Oct. 5 that Taiwan would now respond to a broader range of threats.

“We initially said we do not make the first strike … if they haven’t done the first strike, which means firing a projectile or a missile,” he said. “But the situation has obviously changed.”

“Of course, we have a red line,” he added. “We absolutely will respond.”

Chiu also condemned the CCP for its efforts to unilaterally change the status quo through military force and intimidation and said that the Taiwanese people were prepared to defend themselves.

“They want to build a new normal,” Chiu said. But “we will stand firm when they come. We do not give in.”

Taiwan Will Defend De Facto Independence

The CCP claims that Taiwan is a rogue province of China that must be united with the mainland by any means necessary. Its leadership has openly threatened to “start a war” to ensure that Taiwan’s independence isn’t internationally recognized.

Taiwan has been a self-governing democracy since 1949 and has never been controlled by the CCP. Moreover, it boasts a thriving market economy and is the world’s leading manufacturer of advanced semiconductors, which are used to build everything from pickup trucks to hypersonic missiles.

In August, the CCP used a visit to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi as a pretext to initiate unprecedented military drills. Those exercises included the firing of ballistic missiles over Taiwan and into the waters of Japan’s exclusive economic zone.

Taiwanese leadership has said that the exercises and the CCP’s ongoing military presence are preparation for an invasion of the island.

Most Taiwanese reject the suggestion that the island should come under the control of the CCP, and the island has put up a spirited resistance to continued efforts to intimidate it into submission, such as the CCP’s campaign of air and sea incursions.

To date, CCP forces have largely only made incursions into Taiwan’s air defense identification zone, in which aircraft are required to identify themselves to Taiwanese authorities. They haven’t launched a full incursion into the island’s airspace.

Chiu’s comments indicate that if the CCP pursues such an aggressive course of action, Taiwan’s military could respond with lethal force up to and including a missile strike against the mainland.

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #101 on: October 06, 2022, 08:13:40 AM »
There is also the matter of that massive Chinese dam that they could take out and by so doing kill , , , millions?

Crafty_Dog

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WSJ: Note the last sentence
« Reply #102 on: October 06, 2022, 01:29:53 PM »
https://www.wsj.com/articles/ukraines-appeal-for-longer-range-missiles-presents-fresh-test-of-biden-administration-support-11665083684?mod=hp_lead_pos5

WASHINGTON—Flush with recent battlefield successes, Ukrainian officials are pressing their case for acquiring longer-range missiles to strike deeper into Russian-held territory, including Crimea, raising questions about how aggressively the Biden administration will support Kyiv’s war aims.

U.S. officials have urged Ukraine to focus on its battles in the eastern and southern part of the country, particularly around Kharkiv and Kherson, where it has made its largest gains since Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion. Meanwhile, Ukrainian officials are reviving their pleas for more weaponry, including advanced systems like the U.S. Army Tactical Missile System, or ATACMS, congressional and U.S. officials said.

Those long-range missiles are wanted, in part, to strike into Crimea, which Russia is using as a base to launch Iranian-made drones, congressional and Ukrainian officials said. President Biden has so far declined to provide Ukraine with the ATACMS, which would be capable of reaching deep into Russian territory.

The recent Ukrainian military offensive has pushed Russian troops from the Kharkiv region and reached deep into the northern part of the Donetsk region. Those gains may embolden Kyiv to try to press into Crimea, which Russia illegally annexed in 2014.

The administration’s reluctance to provide these long-range missiles reflects a deeper dispute, in part, over how to support Ukraine without risking a broader conflict with Russia, whose leaders have been hinting they may resort to nuclear weapons.

“The reason we are not giving them these weapons is disagreement over striking targets in Crimea,” a congressional official said.


President Biden has so far declined to provide Ukraine with the U.S. Army Tactical Missile System, or ATACMS.
PHOTO: WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE PUBLIC AFFAIRS

Ukraine’s defense attaché in Washington, Maj. Gen. Borys Kremenetskyi, said Thursday that Russia was mainly using the Iranian-provided drones to attack civilian infrastructure. He added that Ukraine was using air defense systems to blunt the threat but was also looking to attack the sites from which the drones are being flown and controlled.

The Russian Embassy didn’t respond immediately to a request for comment.

While Himars, a U.S. mobile rocket launcher already provided to Kyiv, is an effective system for this purpose, he added that Ukraine wants to acquire longer-range systems that could be fired from the Himars launcher. He didn’t mention the ATACMS missile by name and declined to discuss targets in Crimea.

“We are looking for long-range missiles for Himars,” he told a webinar hosted by the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies. “We need to hit some targets on the occupied Ukrainian territory. ”

The Biden administration recognizes Crimea as part of Ukraine, and has vowed to support Kyiv’s efforts to restore all of its original territory. In August, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky vowed that Ukraine would take back Crimea “by ourselves, without consultation with any other country in the world.”

U.S. officials argue longer-range missiles aren’t necessary for Ukraine’s current fight, and believe Moscow would see it as an escalation at a time when senior Russian leaders have raised the specter of using the country’s nuclear arsenal.

“We are not going to send to Ukraine rocket systems that can strike into Russia,” Mr. Biden said in May.

The Russian Foreign Ministry warned last month that if Washington supplied Kyiv with longer-range missiles it would cross a “red line” and become “a party to the conflict.” With other U.S.-provided weapons, Mr. Zelensky’s government appears to have abided by U.S. insistence that it not use American arms to strike Russia itself.

The U.S. is also increasingly mindful of its own inventories of weaponry, after pumping almost $17 billion in arms to Ukraine in the past eight months.

Lockheed Martin is currently making about 400 ATACMS a year and could expand production to 500, according to people familiar with production of the missiles. Most of the missiles are being produced for foreign military sales. Taiwan, for example, is set to receive dozens of ATACMS.


Crafty_Dog

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WSJ: Pompeo & ; China's threat to Taiwan Semiconductors
« Reply #104 on: October 13, 2022, 07:34:20 PM »
China’s Threat to Taiwan Semiconductors
Why aren’t American asset managers paying attention to the risks from an invasion of the island?
By Vivek Ramaswamy and Mike Pompeo
Oct. 10, 2022 1:28 pm ET


Xi Jinping’s all-but-certain installation for a third term as leader of the Chinese Communist Party marks an important milestone in the party’s progress toward annexing Taiwan. That creates significant risks for U.S. investors—many of which have been overlooked.

Mr. Xi has unambiguously stated that reacquiring Taiwan is a pillar of his national rejuvenation platform and a vital national objective. It’s also critical to his personal legacy. Mr. Xi’s ambitions have been checked by his need to secure a third term, as he likely feared international backlash that could threaten his grip on power. After this month, his calculus may change. Taiwan’s annexation could allow him to assert dominance and divert attention away from China’s domestic problems. Mr. Xi may be disinclined to wait, given the risk of a more assertive president in Taipei in May 2024 or Washington in January 2025. Beijing’s recent rhetoric has been consistent with this hypothesis.

Taiwan’s primary defense is its economic influence, not its military. The country’s dominant position in the semiconductor industry—what President Tsai Ing-wen calls Taiwan’s “silicon shield”—serves as a useful protection against Chinese aggression. The Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. produces more than half of the world’s advanced semiconductors and 90% of the most advanced chips. TSMC is the exclusive producer of the most advanced semiconductors that power Apple’s iPhones, AMD’s advanced CPUs and Qualcomm’s snapdragon chip used in many Android phones.

If China were to invade Taiwan, TSMC’s lights would likely go out. “If you take a military force or invasion, you will render the TSMC factory inoperable,” TSMC chairman Mark Liu told CNN in July. A material disruption to the industry would send shock waves across global supply chains, rendering manufacturers unable to make everyday products.

Though financial analysts and think-tank experts have suggested this could deter China from invading Taiwan, there are other ways for Beijing to achieve its aims without jeopardizing TSMC’s capabilities. A naval blockade, for example, could bully Taiwan’s leadership into surrendering without Chinese troops setting foot on the island.

No matter how it is achieved, the annexation of Taiwan would spell disaster for U.S. interests. If TSMC can’t produce chips, the global economy will tank. If TSMC is still able to produce chips but China dictates the terms of access, companies that rely on TSMC and other Taiwanese semiconductor companies will be left at the mercy of Beijing’s demands.

The U.S. has already experienced the pain of such scarcity. A chip shortage in 2021 cost the auto industry an estimated $210 billion in revenue. A recent study estimates that a one-year disruption in the production of semiconductors in Taiwan would lead to a $490 billion drop in revenue for electronic-device makers, not counting fallout for sectors that aren’t directly reliant on semiconductors.

U.S. semiconductor stocks may offer a reasonable hedge for investors, but only if the companies are sufficiently prepared. U.S. companies should invest in semiconductor technology now to meet the demand that’s expected to grow 80% by 2030. If China annexes Taiwan, U.S. manufacturers could seize on a market dislocation by increasing domestic production while chip prices soar. Though America’s semiconductor industry isn’t as advanced as Taiwan’s, increased investments could change that. And if China bides its time until the U.S. Navy retires more ships as part of its “divest to invest” strategy in the coming years, that will afford U.S. manufacturers even greater flexibility to prepare.

If such investments aren’t made and China annexes Taiwan, U.S. semiconductor firms will face pain in the market and punishment from plaintiffs’ lawyers for failing to act on a known material risk factor.


The better prepared U.S. semiconductor companies are to fill the supply gap created by Chinese annexation of Taiwan, the more reluctant China may be to follow through on its plans. Mr. Xi’s motivations aren’t principally economic, but a rational leader weighs costs and benefits before taking action.

Yet amid rising tensions, the world’s largest asset managers, many of which regularly warn U.S. portfolio companies about risks relating to climate change and board diversity, are conspicuously silent about Taiwan-related risks. The most notable example is BlackRock, whose website raves about the importance of Chinese investments with little mention of Taiwan. In July the firm told investors that “geopolitical events typically have a modest and short-lived impact on markets and economies” and that “we do not see a military confrontation [between China and Taiwan] as imminent.” This came even as China announced military exercises in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan.

BlackRock’s behavior is unsurprising and may itself be part of China’s long-term strategy of influencing U.S. companies to advance its geopolitical goals. BlackRock has been eyeing the lucrative Chinese asset-management market for years. In 2019 CEO Larry Fink described China as “one of the largest future growth opportunities for BlackRock” and said the firm is “focused on building an onshore presence.”

But access doesn’t come cheap. Following Mr. Fink’s comments, BlackRock lobbied the U.S. government for policies favorable to China, such as lower tariffs. In August 2020, BlackRock became the first foreign company to win preliminary approval to offer mutual funds in China. In summer 2021, at the height of the selloff in Chinese stocks, China’s securities regulator summoned BlackRock executives to a meeting, after which BlackRock urged investors to triple their assets allocated to Chinese companies. Two weeks later, BlackRock launched its Chinese mutual funds. BlackRock would endanger its business if it alienated the Chinese government by openly warning U.S. investors and companies about Taiwan-related risks.

The effect of these admonitions is subtle but real. BlackRock is the second-largest shareholder of Intel, one of America’s largest and most advanced semiconductor companies. BlackRock includes Intel in its “Climate Focus Universe”—a selection of companies that BlackRock has targeted to demand “climate adaptation strategies” and “rigorous GHG [greenhouse-gas] emissions reduction targets.” This campaign has proved fruitful: Intel regularly touts its sustainability efforts, including committing to net-zero emissions by 2040, but it says little about the company-specific risks and opportunities posed by Taiwan’s potential annexation.

BlackRock’s silence demands a market response. While the consequences of China’s annexation of Taiwan would go far beyond stocks or the economy, market actors can make a difference. U.S. semiconductor companies and their investors can protect against Taiwan-related risks now by investing in a silicon shield of their own.

Mr. Ramaswamy is executive chairman of Strive Asset Management, which holds semiconductor companies through its new U.S. Semiconductor ETF, SHOC. Mr. Pompeo served as director of the Central Intelligence Agency (2017-18) and secretary of state (2018-21).

DougMacG

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Re: WSJ: Pompeo & ; China's threat to Taiwan Semiconductors
« Reply #105 on: October 14, 2022, 07:22:49 AM »
Very insightful. 

On an aside, Pompeo is very hawkish toward defending Ukraine against Russia, almost saying win at all costs, a view not popular here.  But in this piece he and a sharp coauthor are urging smart steps to take in preparation for war.

Same challenge for the invading force exists in both conflicts.  If you want to end up owning the country, don't destroy it.  China can't build iphones for example with Taiwan chips.  China can't afford a manufacturing meltdown during their housing crisis, but this is their best window to take what they want most, and like Russia, don't seem to care about the cost.

Are your investments protected against a war in China?  Oops, too late.

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #106 on: October 14, 2022, 07:29:30 AM »
No surprise that something coming from Pompeo is insightful.  Nor does it surprise that he does not engage in "woulda, coulda, shoulda" or partisan pot-shottery.

"On an aside, Pompeo is very hawkish toward defending Ukraine against Russia, almost saying win at all costs, a view not popular here."

Speaking for myself, as I just mentioned on the Ukraine thread, in my opinion there is no going back to the status quo ante and where are in a terrible game of chicken.  Feckless stupidity got us here, but that does not necessarily determine what we should be doing now.  Not at all clearing to me that conceding the game of chicken here and now is the best call.


G M

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Re: WSJ: Pompeo & ; China's threat to Taiwan Semiconductors
« Reply #107 on: October 14, 2022, 07:30:44 AM »
Understand that both Putin and Xi will reduce Taiwan/UKR to ash if required to do so to "win".

Better understand the mindsets involved when playing nuclear poker.


Very insightful. 

On an aside, Pompeo is very hawkish toward defending Ukraine against Russia, almost saying win at all costs, a view not popular here.  But in this piece he and a sharp coauthor are urging smart steps to take in preparation for war.

Same challenge for the invading force exists in both conflicts.  If you want to end up owning the country, don't destroy it.  China can't build iphones for example with Taiwan chips.  China can't afford a manufacturing meltdown during their housing crisis, but this is their best window to take what they want most, and like Russia, don't seem to care about the cost.

Are your investments protected against a war in China?  Oops, too late.

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #108 on: October 14, 2022, 07:36:11 AM »
"Understand that both Putin and Xi will reduce Taiwan/UKR to ash if required to do so to "win"."

Agreed that Putin is quite willing to go full Grozny, but it is not clear to me that China would do the same to Taiwan.  A naval blockade would be a far smarter option for them.  It would trigger HUGE economic for America and the West and Taiwan, who does 60% of its trade with China, would likely fold sooner or later, meaning that China would then access TMSC.



And, my investments have been out of Chinese related companies for about 5 years now.

G M

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #109 on: October 14, 2022, 07:41:47 AM »
Just as the PRC is grinding the Uighers into dust, to be remade into Han Chinese, the PRC is willing to kill every Taiwanese and refill the island with people from the mainland.


"Understand that both Putin and Xi will reduce Taiwan/UKR to ash if required to do so to "win"."

Agreed that Putin is quite willing to go full Grozny, but it is not clear to me that China would do the same to Taiwan.  A naval blockade would be a far smarter option for them.  It would trigger HUGE economic for America and the West and Taiwan, who does 60% of its trade with China, would likely fold sooner or later, meaning that China would then access TMSC.



And, my investments have been out of Chinese related companies for about 5 years now.

DougMacG

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #110 on: October 14, 2022, 07:56:29 AM »
Investments are out of these companies that manufacturebin China, and everything that could be hurt by their collapse?    :wink:

AT&T
Abercrombe & Fitch
Abbott Laboratories
Acer Electronics
Ademco Security
Adidas
ADI Security
AGI- American Gem Institute
AIG Financial
Agrilink Foods, Inc. (ProFac)
Allergan Laboratories
American Eagle Outfitters
American Standard
American Tourister
Ames Tools
Amphenol Corporation
Amway Corporation
Analog Devices, Inc.
Apple Computer
Armani
Armour Meats
Ashland Chemical
Ashley Furniture
Associated Grocers
Audi Motors
AudioVox
AutoZone, Inc.
Avon

Banana Republic
Bausch & Lomb, Inc.
Baxter International
Bed, Bath & Beyond
Belkin Electronics
Best Buy
Best Foods
Big 5 Sporting Goods
Black & Decker
Body Shop
Borden Foods
Briggs & Stratton

Calrad Electric
Campbell 's Soup
Canon Electronics
Carole Cable
Casio Instrument
Caterpillar, Inc.
CBC America
CCTV Outlet
Checker Auto
CitiCorp
Cisco Systems
Chiquita Brands International
Claire's Boutique
Cobra Electronics
Coby Electronics
Coca Cola Foods
Colgate-Palmolive
Colorado Spectrum
ConAgra Foods
Cooper Tire
Corning, Inc.
Coleman Sporting Goods
Compaq
Crabtree & Evelyn
Cracker Barrel Stores
Craftsman Tools (see Sears)
Cummins, Inc.

Dannon Foods
Dell Computer
Del Monte Foods
Dewalt Tools
DHL
Dial Corporation
Diebold, Inc.
Dillard's, Inc.
Dodge-Phelps
Dole Foods
Dollar Tree Stores, Inc.
Dow-Corning

Eastman Kodak
EchoStar
Eclipse CCTV
Edge Electronics Group
Electric Vehicles USA, Inc.
Eli Lilly Company
Emerson Electric
Enfamil
Estee Lauder
Eveready

Family Dollar Stores
FedEx
Fisher Scientific
Ford Motors
Fossil
Frito Lay
Furniture Brands International

GAP Stores
Gateway Computer
GE, General Electric
General Foods International
General Mills
General Motors
Gentek
Gerber Foods
Gillette Company
Goodrich Company
Goodyear Tire
Google
Gucci
Guess?

Haagen-Dazs
Harley Davidson
Hasbro Company
Heinz Foods
Hershey Foods
Hitachi
Hoffman-LaRoche
Holt's Automotive Products
Hormel Foods
Home Depot
Honda Motor
Hoover Vacuum
HP Computer
Honda
Honeywell
Hubbell Inc.
Huggies
Hunts-Wesson Foods

ICON Office Solutions
IBM
Ikea
Intel Corporation

J.C. Penny's
J.M. Smucker Company
John Deere
Johnson Control
Johnson & Johnson
Johnstone Supply
JVC Electronics

KB Home
Keebler Foods
Kenwood Audio
KFC, Kentucky Fried Chicken
Kimberly Clark
Knorr Foods
K-Mart
Kohler
Kohl's Corporation
Kraft Foods
Kragen Auto

Land's End
Lee Kum Kee Foods
Lexmark
LG Electronics
Lipton Foods
L.L. Bean, Inc.
Logitech
Libby's Foods
Linen & Things
Lipo Chemicals, Inc.
Lowe's Hardware
Lucent Technologies
Lufkin

Mars Candy
Martha Stewart Products
Mattel
McCormick Foods
McDonald's
McKesson Corporation
Megellan GPS
Memorex
Merck & Company
Michael's Stores
Mitsubishi Electronics
Mitsubishi Motors
Mobile Oil
Molex
Motorola
Motts Applesauce
Multifoods Corporation

Nabisco Foods
National Semiconductor
Nescafe
Nestles Foods
Nextar
Nike
Nikon
Nivea Cosmetics
Nokia Electronics
Northrop Grumman Corporation
NuSkin International
Nutrilite (see Amway)
Nvidia Corporation (G-Force)

Office Depot
Olin Corporation
Old Navy
Olympus Electronics
Orion-Knight Electronics

Pacific Sunwear, Inc.
Pamper's
Panasonic
Pan Pacific Electronics
Panvise
Papa Johns
Payless Shoesource
Pelco
Pentax Optics
Pep Boy's
Pepsico International
PetsMart
Petco
Pfizer, Inc.
Philips Electronics
Phillip Morris Companies
Pier 1 Imports
Pierre Cardin
Pillsbury Company
Pioneer Electronics
Pitney Bowes, Inc.
Pizza Hut
Plantronics
PlaySchool Toys
Polaris Industries
Polaroid
Polo (see Ralph Loren)
Post Cereals
Price-Pfister
Pringles
Praxair
Proctor & Gamble
PSS World Medical
Pyle Audio

Qualcomm
Quest One

Radio Shack
Ralph Loren
RCA
Reebok International
Reynolds Aluminum
Revlon
Rohm & Hass Company

Samsonite
Samsung
Sanyo
Shell Oil
Schwinn Bike
Sears-Craftsman
Seven-Eleven (7-11)
Sharp Electronics
Sherwin-Williams
Shure Electronics
Sony
Speco Technologies/Pro Video
Shopko Stores
Skechers Footwear
SmartHome
Smucker's (see J.M. Smucker's)
Solar Power, Inc.
Spencer Gifts
Stanley Tools
Staple's
Starbucks Corporation
Steelcase, Inc.
STP Oil
Sunkist Growers
SunMaid Raisins
Sunglass Hut
Sunkist
Subway Sandwiches
Switchcraft Electronics
SYSCO Foods
Sylvania Electric

3-M
Tai Pan Trading Company
Tamron Optics
Target
TDK
Tektronix, Inc
Texas Instruments
Timex
Timken Bearing
TNT
Tommy Hilfiger
Toro
Toshiba
Tower Automotive
Toyota
Toy's R Us, Inc.
Trader Joe's
Tripp-lite
True Value Hardware
Tupper Ware
Tyson Foods

Uniden Electronics
UPS

Valspar Corporation
Victoria 's Secret
Vizio Electronics
Volkswagen
VTech

Walgreen Company
Walt Disney Company
Walmart
WD-40 Corporation
Weller Electric Company
Western Digital
Westinghouse Electric
Weyerhaeuser Company
Whirlpool Corporation
Wilson Sporting Goods
Wrigley
WW Grainger, Inc.
Wyeth Laboratories

X-10
Xelite
Xerox

Yahoo
Yamaha
Yoplait Foods
Yum Brands
 
Zale Corporation

G M

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #111 on: October 14, 2022, 08:01:09 AM »
Note how many of these companies (Retailers) dropped MyPillow because OrangeManBad but have no moral objection to the PRC.


Investments are out of these companies that manufacturebin China, and everything that could be hurt by their collapse?    :wink:

AT&T
Abercrombe & Fitch
Abbott Laboratories
Acer Electronics
Ademco Security
Adidas
ADI Security
AGI- American Gem Institute
AIG Financial
Agrilink Foods, Inc. (ProFac)
Allergan Laboratories
American Eagle Outfitters
American Standard
American Tourister
Ames Tools
Amphenol Corporation
Amway Corporation
Analog Devices, Inc.
Apple Computer
Armani
Armour Meats
Ashland Chemical
Ashley Furniture
Associated Grocers
Audi Motors
AudioVox
AutoZone, Inc.
Avon

Banana Republic
Bausch & Lomb, Inc.
Baxter International
Bed, Bath & Beyond
Belkin Electronics
Best Buy
Best Foods
Big 5 Sporting Goods
Black & Decker
Body Shop
Borden Foods
Briggs & Stratton

Calrad Electric
Campbell 's Soup
Canon Electronics
Carole Cable
Casio Instrument
Caterpillar, Inc.
CBC America
CCTV Outlet
Checker Auto
CitiCorp
Cisco Systems
Chiquita Brands International
Claire's Boutique
Cobra Electronics
Coby Electronics
Coca Cola Foods
Colgate-Palmolive
Colorado Spectrum
ConAgra Foods
Cooper Tire
Corning, Inc.
Coleman Sporting Goods
Compaq
Crabtree & Evelyn
Cracker Barrel Stores
Craftsman Tools (see Sears)
Cummins, Inc.

Dannon Foods
Dell Computer
Del Monte Foods
Dewalt Tools
DHL
Dial Corporation
Diebold, Inc.
Dillard's, Inc.
Dodge-Phelps
Dole Foods
Dollar Tree Stores, Inc.
Dow-Corning

Eastman Kodak
EchoStar
Eclipse CCTV
Edge Electronics Group
Electric Vehicles USA, Inc.
Eli Lilly Company
Emerson Electric
Enfamil
Estee Lauder
Eveready

Family Dollar Stores
FedEx
Fisher Scientific
Ford Motors
Fossil
Frito Lay
Furniture Brands International

GAP Stores
Gateway Computer
GE, General Electric
General Foods International
General Mills
General Motors
Gentek
Gerber Foods
Gillette Company
Goodrich Company
Goodyear Tire
Google
Gucci
Guess?

Haagen-Dazs
Harley Davidson
Hasbro Company
Heinz Foods
Hershey Foods
Hitachi
Hoffman-LaRoche
Holt's Automotive Products
Hormel Foods
Home Depot
Honda Motor
Hoover Vacuum
HP Computer
Honda
Honeywell
Hubbell Inc.
Huggies
Hunts-Wesson Foods

ICON Office Solutions
IBM
Ikea
Intel Corporation

J.C. Penny's
J.M. Smucker Company
John Deere
Johnson Control
Johnson & Johnson
Johnstone Supply
JVC Electronics

KB Home
Keebler Foods
Kenwood Audio
KFC, Kentucky Fried Chicken
Kimberly Clark
Knorr Foods
K-Mart
Kohler
Kohl's Corporation
Kraft Foods
Kragen Auto

Land's End
Lee Kum Kee Foods
Lexmark
LG Electronics
Lipton Foods
L.L. Bean, Inc.
Logitech
Libby's Foods
Linen & Things
Lipo Chemicals, Inc.
Lowe's Hardware
Lucent Technologies
Lufkin

Mars Candy
Martha Stewart Products
Mattel
McCormick Foods
McDonald's
McKesson Corporation
Megellan GPS
Memorex
Merck & Company
Michael's Stores
Mitsubishi Electronics
Mitsubishi Motors
Mobile Oil
Molex
Motorola
Motts Applesauce
Multifoods Corporation

Nabisco Foods
National Semiconductor
Nescafe
Nestles Foods
Nextar
Nike
Nikon
Nivea Cosmetics
Nokia Electronics
Northrop Grumman Corporation
NuSkin International
Nutrilite (see Amway)
Nvidia Corporation (G-Force)

Office Depot
Olin Corporation
Old Navy
Olympus Electronics
Orion-Knight Electronics

Pacific Sunwear, Inc.
Pamper's
Panasonic
Pan Pacific Electronics
Panvise
Papa Johns
Payless Shoesource
Pelco
Pentax Optics
Pep Boy's
Pepsico International
PetsMart
Petco
Pfizer, Inc.
Philips Electronics
Phillip Morris Companies
Pier 1 Imports
Pierre Cardin
Pillsbury Company
Pioneer Electronics
Pitney Bowes, Inc.
Pizza Hut
Plantronics
PlaySchool Toys
Polaris Industries
Polaroid
Polo (see Ralph Loren)
Post Cereals
Price-Pfister
Pringles
Praxair
Proctor & Gamble
PSS World Medical
Pyle Audio

Qualcomm
Quest One

Radio Shack
Ralph Loren
RCA
Reebok International
Reynolds Aluminum
Revlon
Rohm & Hass Company

Samsonite
Samsung
Sanyo
Shell Oil
Schwinn Bike
Sears-Craftsman
Seven-Eleven (7-11)
Sharp Electronics
Sherwin-Williams
Shure Electronics
Sony
Speco Technologies/Pro Video
Shopko Stores
Skechers Footwear
SmartHome
Smucker's (see J.M. Smucker's)
Solar Power, Inc.
Spencer Gifts
Stanley Tools
Staple's
Starbucks Corporation
Steelcase, Inc.
STP Oil
Sunkist Growers
SunMaid Raisins
Sunglass Hut
Sunkist
Subway Sandwiches
Switchcraft Electronics
SYSCO Foods
Sylvania Electric

3-M
Tai Pan Trading Company
Tamron Optics
Target
TDK
Tektronix, Inc
Texas Instruments
Timex
Timken Bearing
TNT
Tommy Hilfiger
Toro
Toshiba
Tower Automotive
Toyota
Toy's R Us, Inc.
Trader Joe's
Tripp-lite
True Value Hardware
Tupper Ware
Tyson Foods

Uniden Electronics
UPS

Valspar Corporation
Victoria 's Secret
Vizio Electronics
Volkswagen
VTech

Walgreen Company
Walt Disney Company
Walmart
WD-40 Corporation
Weller Electric Company
Western Digital
Westinghouse Electric
Weyerhaeuser Company
Whirlpool Corporation
Wilson Sporting Goods
Wrigley
WW Grainger, Inc.
Wyeth Laboratories

X-10
Xelite
Xerox

Yahoo
Yamaha
Yoplait Foods
Yum Brands
 
Zale Corporation

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #112 on: October 14, 2022, 08:53:44 AM »
Well played!

No, I have not taken it anywhere near that far.



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WT
« Reply #116 on: October 18, 2022, 11:35:48 AM »
second

TAIWAN

IN CASE OF EMERGENCY

Distant thoughts of confrontation with China grow closer to genuine fear of losing freedom

First of three parts

BY GUY TAYLOR THE WASHINGTON TIMES

TAICHUNG, TAIWAN

Elsa Lin has been doing serious soulsearching about what might become of her life and how she would respond if a once-unthinkable war with China breaks out.

“My parents think it will be better for me to leave the country if the war ever takes place,” Ms. Lin said in a recent interview. “They think if things continue to escalate, I should leave.”

The 28-year-old has lived nearly her whole life in Taiwan, and she said the island democracy flourishing around her since her childhood is too valuable to abandon.

“I am proud of being Taiwanese, and if China attacks Taiwan just like Russia did Ukraine, I fear we would lose our freedom,” Ms. Lin told The Washington Times. “If we are attacked, I will fight. I will be volunteering to fight.”

She is grappling with a decision confronting Taiwan’s nearly 24 million people as Beijing increases its threat to absorb the island democracy by any means necessary, including a military invasion, to force it under the control of the Communist Party-ruled government of mainland China.

The national soul-searching has intensified since August when China dramatically expanded the scope of its military drills and missile tests

near Taiwan in response to a visit by a U.S. delegation headed by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. Many Taiwanese see the expansion of aggression as a sign that Beijing is practicing to invade.

Fears that China’s autocratic government will turn to military force seem more rational after eight months of violent imagery from Russia’s military invasion of Ukraine.

“After Ukraine, people’s mindset has changed,” said Betty Chen, a 40-yearold Taiwanese woman who works as an English-language translator for highprofi le clients in Taipei.

“Seeing this example in Ukraine, we know that war can really happen,” said Ms. Chen. “Nobody wants war, but we cannot ignore the possibility, especially after Ukraine. I think we’ve become more and more aware of that.”

China’s success in ratcheting up pressure against a vibrant pro-democracy independence movement in Hong Kong in recent years has added to concerns that Beijing feels increasingly emboldened to wipe out the free political society in Taiwan.

The Chinese Communist Party has made a goal of absorbing Taiwan since the early 1950s, when American support helped the fleeing Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party) of Chiang Kai-shek find sanctuary for a government in exile on the island after its defeat by Mao Zedong’s forces on the mainland. U.S. military power deterred China’s new leaders from attacking Taiwan.

Chinese President Xi Jinping has pushed the goal back into the global spotlight. In 2019, he warned that Beijing could use force to dissolve Taiwan’s democracy. The heightened military drills and China’s refusal to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have increased concern that Mr. Xi may be preparing for war.

Most Taiwanese say they want peace with China, and some say the island should avoid war at any cost. Regardless, the independence-leaning government of President Tsai Ing-wen, along with influential leaders of Taiwan’s economy with strong ties to both mainland China and the United States, are scrambling to prepare the island’s citizenry for a potential invasion.

“Putting it very simply, [Chinese offi cials] talk about it and they practice for it, and therefore the threat for Taiwan is real,” said Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu.

“We sense it and we understand the urgency, and therefore we also try to prepare for the worst possible day to come,” Mr. Wu recently told foreign journalists visiting Taiwan through a program sponsored by the Taiwanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

“What we need to do is to make ourselves fully prepared so that whenever China thinks the conditions are right for them to attack against Taiwan, we are prepared and we are able to defend ourselves,” he said. “If you look at the Ukrainian people, their will to defend their freedom, they are truly inspirational to the Taiwanese people.”

Among the most inspired is Taiwanese billionaire Robert Tsao, founder of the microchip manufacturing giant United Microelectronics Corp., who has publicly pledged $100 million to bolster the island democracy’s defense.

Mr. Tsao has said in interviews that he seeks to finance advanced drone development for Taiwan’s military.

Another $31 million is being channeled into an effort to expand and improve the civilian defense force. Local-level training organizations have begun offering public courses on tying tourniquets, countering Chinese disinformation operations and other warfare skills.

Civilian defense training is at an early stage, and it’s unclear whether public interest is high enough to produce tens or hundreds of thousands of civilian soldiers — let alone integrate the force effectively with Taiwan’s national military.

The status of and public faith in the Taiwanese military are sensitive subjects.

Since China increased military aggression in August, 59% of Taiwanese said they have confidence in the national army’s ability to defend the island in the event of a Chinese attack, according to a poll by the government-connected Institute for National Defense and Security Research.

After Mrs. Pelosi’s visit, roughly 50% of those polled said they believed the United States would send troops to help Taiwan in the event of a Chinese invasion.

The poll also found that about 41% believe the most important way for Taiwan to protect itself is to strengthen the island’s national defense capabilities.

The Tsai government has responded by pushing for a 14% increase in defense spending for the coming year, with line items for a “special” defense ministry fund and new fighter jets.

Although the increase would bring Taiwan’s annual military budget to more than $19 billion, it’s a drop in the bucket compared with the nearly $230 billion that mainland China earmarked for its military in 2022.

Some Taiwan-based observers are skeptical of the island’s defense system.

“The Taiwanese military is woefully unprepared for an invasion by China,” said Wendell Minnick, a longtime Taiwan- based American journalist covering security issues in Asia.

Critics in Washington and Taipei point to the uncertain quality of Taiwanese soldiers compared with the battlehardened and NATO-trained troops Ukraine has deployed to counter Russian aggression.

Until August, the fear of an imminent Chinese invasion of Taiwan was receding and the mandatory term of military training and service for draftees fell from as long as two years to just four months.

At the same time, many of the bigticket items on the Taiwanese Defense Ministry’s shopping list, such as nextgeneration F-16 fighter jets from the United States, may not be deployable for years.

“It’s a popular idea for the news media that Taiwan could emulate Ukraine in the event of a Chinese invasion,” said Mr. Minnick, “but it’s not accurate.”

Many young adults in Taiwan have brought a psychological sea change in attitudes.

“The younger generation in Taiwan has more ideas about the political issues, and there are more and more people who believe that we have to stand up against China [and] prepare for war,” said Cynthia Yang, a 26-year-old professional working in the Taiwanese semiconductor manufacturing industry.

“There are a lot of activities preparing civil defense. There are civil defense organizations already,” said Ms. Yang, who spends time off work as the youth representative of the Taiwan United Nations Alliance, a nongovernmental organization whose self-described mission is to counter Chinese “bullying and coercion,” which have kept the island democracy from membership in the United Nations.

The alliance operates out of a Christian church in Taipei that hosts civilian defense training sessions.

Ms. Yang said many Taiwanese don’t want to openly declare the island as an independent, sovereign nation because they fear it will trigger a severe backlash from China.

“They are afraid of invasion from China,” she said. “They are afraid it would trigger the war directly because that’s what the Chinese government has been saying … that [Beijing] will use all means to prevent Taiwan from declaring independence.”

Ms. Yang, Ms. Lin and others say the rising Taiwanese generation represents a new kind of thinking.

“Among my friends who have a bit more education, we have a little more time to pay attention to the international situation and politics,” said Ms. Lin. Apart from a year of university study in Europe, she has lived her whole life in Taiwan. She was coming of age as political liberties flourished after the first democratic presidential elections in 1996.

“Some of Taiwan’s citizens think politics are not important — that it’s better to just live your stable life, just work and earn money,” Ms. Lin said. “But from what I know, my friends, we want a little bit more than that. We want our freedom. We know that it is important and it is special.”

“We are in Taiwan, not China. We have freedom of speech,” she said. “If China becomes more aggressive, we will fight back. We will absolutely make some noise.

Crafty_Dog

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WT: Admiral says we can defend Taiwan
« Reply #117 on: October 20, 2022, 02:26:33 AM »
Naval commander: U.S. grows stronger in defense of Taiwan

Sees China moves as ‘rehearsals’

BY BILL GERTZ THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The commander of the world’s largest naval force component says there should be no ambiguity about the operational capabilities of the U.S. Navy’s warships and other naval forces to defend Taiwan from a Chinese attack.

Adm. Sam “Pappy” Paparo, U.S. Pacific Fleet commander, said in an interview with The Washington Times that his forces are ready to defend Taiwan from a Chinese military move.

The prospect appears increasingly likely under the aggressive policies of Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Asked about comments from Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday that China appears to be narrowing its timetable for taking action against Taiwan, which Beijing claims as part of its sovereign territory, Adm. Paparo said: “This is a decade of concern, so I absolutely see the logic of in the secretary’s discussion.”

Recent Chinese military efforts and drills in preparation for a Taiwan invasion or other military action can be seen as “rehearsals” of the People’s Liberation Army, he said.

On the potential for a conflict with China in the Taiwan Strait, Adm. Paparo said: “The first thing I will say is, we’re ready today. We’ll be ready tomorrow. We’ll be ready next week and next year. There’s not a single day that we’re not going to be working to get readier.”

U.S. policy since the 1970s recognizes that there is a single China but says differences over Taiwan’s sovereignty and its relationship to the mainland must not be resolved by force, he said.

The four-star admiral said he could offer “no opinion on the policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’” regarding how the U.S. military would respond to a Chinese move against Taiwan.

“But,” he added, “what I can offer you is operational clarity.”

Under the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, he said, “I’m required to have the capability to thwart any invasion of Taiwan, any effort to resolve the matter by force, and on that, there is no ambiguity. There is just perfect clarity that I’m confident in our ability to do that with our joint capabilities that are capable of deploying quickly to the point where they are operating dynamically in the battle space and imposing intolerable costs to an adversary.”

The U.S. enacted the law to support Taiwan after the Carter administration switched formal diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing. The Taiwan Relations Act states that U.S. recognition of the People’s Republic of China was preconditioned on the future of Taiwan, now a thriving island democracy of nearly 24 million people, being settled by “peaceful means.” The law also states that it is U.S. policy “to maintain the capacity of the United States to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion” that endangers the security, social and economic system of the people of Taiwan.

“Strategic ambiguity” is not a formal U.S. policy. It was first discussed in congressional testimony by a Pentagon official in 1995.

President Biden has called the policy into question. In September, he said the United States would send military forces to defend Taiwan in the case of an “unprecedented attack” by China.

It was the fourth time the president made the statement. After each mention, the White House insisted that the comments did not represent a change in longstanding U.S. policy. Still, the president’s repeated statements have led to official protests from Beijing and widespread perceptions that the strategic ambiguity approach is a thing of the past.

Chinese leaders accuse the Biden administration of trying to change the status quo regarding Taiwan and have repeatedly stated that the use of force against Taiwan remains an option.

On Sunday, Mr. Xi said efforts to take control of Taiwan, which split from the mainland during a civil war in 1949, was one of the Chinese Communist Party’s highest priorities.

Although China has built up its navy and strategic forces under Mr. Xi, Adm. Paparo said in the interview that the People’s Liberation Army has several major weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

“One, they have no friends. No allies and partners,” he said.

Beijing has a “passing friendship” with Russia that is limited in scope and ties to North Korea that are not strong.

“Their second weakness is a lack of experience in the combat areas that would be required for them to gain the advantages,” Adm. Paparo said.

“But on that front, they are working their way through that,” he said, “and they’re attempting to learn and grow in those capabilities.”

Finally, he said, China has a more profound weakness: “the utter absurdity and weakness of their cause in their malign intentions.”

The commander leads the world’s largest fleet command, covering 100 million square miles of territory from the West Coast of the United States to the Indian Ocean.

His command includes about 200 ships and submarines, nearly 1,200 aircraft and more than 130,000 sailors and civilians. The fleet is under the administrative control of the Navy’s chief of naval operations and operationally is under the Hawaii-based Indo-Pacific Command.

Its legendary commanders include Adm. Chester Nimitz and Adm. Raymond Spruance.

Adm. Paparo, a Navy pilot by training, said the Chinese military’s drive to develop war-fighting experience has prompted him to increase joint fighting efforts for U.S. forces.

The Pacific Fleet recently augmented its two numbered fleets, the 7th Fleet and 3rd Fleet, with Fleet Information Warfare Command-Pacific. The unit is designed to oversee information warfare, including cyberattacks and strategic messaging. The new command coordinates communications and messaging with the Indo-Pacific Command and the office of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.

Once again, a main target of the initiative is China.

The information warfare center is “always working toward characterizing [China’s] ability to see, understand, decide and act in the battlespace, and we’re ready to frustrate their ability to do those things,” Adm. Paparo said.

He said the new information battlefi eld and the struggle between competing value systems are increasingly important.

“I have faith in the principles of a free and open Indo-Pacific, in the principles of sovereignty, of human dignity, human rights, self-determination, freedom of the seas, freedom of the skies, freedom in space,” he said. “I have absolute belief in that. I have absolute belief in the values of the allies and partners, and those values in and of themselves are an info op.”

“In our adversaries,” he said, “it’s usually the converse.”

The commitment to democratic openness and a free, sometimes critical press may have short-term disadvantages in the information wars, the admiral said, but in the long term, “our principles of being truthful and authentic, and our long-term principles of freedom of the press will prevail because people are smart.”

Within the U.S. military, the Pacific Fleet is known as a joint task force that must be ready to conduct operations in both kinetic and non-kinetic combat scenarios. As part of a broader Pentagon strategy, the Pacific Fleet, like other military components, plans to leverage hightechnology advances in weapons and other capabilities, the commander said.

Key areas include electronic warfare to counter command and control communications, intelligence surveillance, and reconnaissance while protecting Navy command and control.

The Navy also is developing “longrange fires” — advanced strike weapons, and improved abilities to “maneuver dynamically in that environment,” Adm. Paparo said.

Another key area will be improvements in the fleet’s ability to execute precise and timely logistics, he said.

Earlier, during a speech at a conference on information operations, Adm. Paparo said the use of information tools is “first, middle and last” in the effort to prevent war and deter adversaries. The military, in combination with allies and partners, aims to respect the rule of law and international norms while championing freedom, rights and liberties.

Deterring China, as well as hostile powers such as Russia and North Korea, means opposing “expansionism and seizure of land, seas, nutrients and mineral resources by coercion and/or military actions,” Adm. Paparo said.

The People’s Republic of China, he said, is seeking to gain global hegemony through the use of innocuous-sounding phrases like promotion of “common prosperity.”

“This is the system where the PRC is the center and ‘all affairs under heaven’ are determined through their autocracy,” Adm. Paparo said. “Not the rule of law is what we see in the PRC, but it is the ‘rule by law.’” Adm. Paparo rejected Mr. Xi’s claim that China’s drive for global power is about “national rejuvenation.”

“Let’s be clear about what rejuvenation means,” he said. “National rejuvenation means the party control of economies. It means military modernization to support the above, and it means the armed changing of international borders by force.”

The U.S. and its allies are seeking to block Chinese ambitions on a series of fronts: military expansion in the South China Sea, coercion and pressure against Taiwan and Japan’s Senkaku Islands, pressure on India’s border region, and repression of freedoms and liberties in Hong Kong, he said.

“This is not about containing PRC economic and military growth,” he said. “It’s about ensuring that we as a free and sovereign nation ensure their actions, behaviors do not disrupt the peace and stability of the region, or the international rules-based order which … has lifted 60% of the world out of poverty and lifts 160,000 human beings out of poverty each and every single day.”

Adm. Paparo is the second senior Pacifi c Fleet officer to warn of the growing danger of a military conflict over Taiwan.

In September, Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, commander of the Navy’s 7th Fleet, said China’s navy has grown large enough to blockade Taiwan.

Adm. Thomas said he does not know whether China will use its military against Taiwan but said U.S. forces must be ready. He urged that differences be settled peacefully.

“Clearly, if they do something that’s non-kinetic, which, you know, a blockade is less kinetic, then that allows the international community to weigh in and to work together on how we’re going to solve that challenge,” Adm. Thomas told The Wall Street Journal in September.


G M

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Re: WT: Admiral says we can defend Taiwan
« Reply #118 on: October 20, 2022, 06:55:07 AM »
The US Navy can't even avoid crashing ships into things in peacetime.

But we have better drag queen shows than the PLAN!


Naval commander: U.S. grows stronger in defense of Taiwan

Sees China moves as ‘rehearsals’

BY BILL GERTZ THE WASHINGTON TIMES

The commander of the world’s largest naval force component says there should be no ambiguity about the operational capabilities of the U.S. Navy’s warships and other naval forces to defend Taiwan from a Chinese attack.

Adm. Sam “Pappy” Paparo, U.S. Pacific Fleet commander, said in an interview with The Washington Times that his forces are ready to defend Taiwan from a Chinese military move.

The prospect appears increasingly likely under the aggressive policies of Chinese President Xi Jinping.

Asked about comments from Secretary of State Antony Blinken on Monday that China appears to be narrowing its timetable for taking action against Taiwan, which Beijing claims as part of its sovereign territory, Adm. Paparo said: “This is a decade of concern, so I absolutely see the logic of in the secretary’s discussion.”

Recent Chinese military efforts and drills in preparation for a Taiwan invasion or other military action can be seen as “rehearsals” of the People’s Liberation Army, he said.

On the potential for a conflict with China in the Taiwan Strait, Adm. Paparo said: “The first thing I will say is, we’re ready today. We’ll be ready tomorrow. We’ll be ready next week and next year. There’s not a single day that we’re not going to be working to get readier.”

U.S. policy since the 1970s recognizes that there is a single China but says differences over Taiwan’s sovereignty and its relationship to the mainland must not be resolved by force, he said.

The four-star admiral said he could offer “no opinion on the policy of ‘strategic ambiguity’” regarding how the U.S. military would respond to a Chinese move against Taiwan.

“But,” he added, “what I can offer you is operational clarity.”

Under the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, he said, “I’m required to have the capability to thwart any invasion of Taiwan, any effort to resolve the matter by force, and on that, there is no ambiguity. There is just perfect clarity that I’m confident in our ability to do that with our joint capabilities that are capable of deploying quickly to the point where they are operating dynamically in the battle space and imposing intolerable costs to an adversary.”

The U.S. enacted the law to support Taiwan after the Carter administration switched formal diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing. The Taiwan Relations Act states that U.S. recognition of the People’s Republic of China was preconditioned on the future of Taiwan, now a thriving island democracy of nearly 24 million people, being settled by “peaceful means.” The law also states that it is U.S. policy “to maintain the capacity of the United States to resist any resort to force or other forms of coercion” that endangers the security, social and economic system of the people of Taiwan.

“Strategic ambiguity” is not a formal U.S. policy. It was first discussed in congressional testimony by a Pentagon official in 1995.

President Biden has called the policy into question. In September, he said the United States would send military forces to defend Taiwan in the case of an “unprecedented attack” by China.

It was the fourth time the president made the statement. After each mention, the White House insisted that the comments did not represent a change in longstanding U.S. policy. Still, the president’s repeated statements have led to official protests from Beijing and widespread perceptions that the strategic ambiguity approach is a thing of the past.

Chinese leaders accuse the Biden administration of trying to change the status quo regarding Taiwan and have repeatedly stated that the use of force against Taiwan remains an option.

On Sunday, Mr. Xi said efforts to take control of Taiwan, which split from the mainland during a civil war in 1949, was one of the Chinese Communist Party’s highest priorities.

Although China has built up its navy and strategic forces under Mr. Xi, Adm. Paparo said in the interview that the People’s Liberation Army has several major weaknesses and vulnerabilities.

“One, they have no friends. No allies and partners,” he said.

Beijing has a “passing friendship” with Russia that is limited in scope and ties to North Korea that are not strong.

“Their second weakness is a lack of experience in the combat areas that would be required for them to gain the advantages,” Adm. Paparo said.

“But on that front, they are working their way through that,” he said, “and they’re attempting to learn and grow in those capabilities.”

Finally, he said, China has a more profound weakness: “the utter absurdity and weakness of their cause in their malign intentions.”

The commander leads the world’s largest fleet command, covering 100 million square miles of territory from the West Coast of the United States to the Indian Ocean.

His command includes about 200 ships and submarines, nearly 1,200 aircraft and more than 130,000 sailors and civilians. The fleet is under the administrative control of the Navy’s chief of naval operations and operationally is under the Hawaii-based Indo-Pacific Command.

Its legendary commanders include Adm. Chester Nimitz and Adm. Raymond Spruance.

Adm. Paparo, a Navy pilot by training, said the Chinese military’s drive to develop war-fighting experience has prompted him to increase joint fighting efforts for U.S. forces.

The Pacific Fleet recently augmented its two numbered fleets, the 7th Fleet and 3rd Fleet, with Fleet Information Warfare Command-Pacific. The unit is designed to oversee information warfare, including cyberattacks and strategic messaging. The new command coordinates communications and messaging with the Indo-Pacific Command and the office of Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin.

Once again, a main target of the initiative is China.

The information warfare center is “always working toward characterizing [China’s] ability to see, understand, decide and act in the battlespace, and we’re ready to frustrate their ability to do those things,” Adm. Paparo said.

He said the new information battlefi eld and the struggle between competing value systems are increasingly important.

“I have faith in the principles of a free and open Indo-Pacific, in the principles of sovereignty, of human dignity, human rights, self-determination, freedom of the seas, freedom of the skies, freedom in space,” he said. “I have absolute belief in that. I have absolute belief in the values of the allies and partners, and those values in and of themselves are an info op.”

“In our adversaries,” he said, “it’s usually the converse.”

The commitment to democratic openness and a free, sometimes critical press may have short-term disadvantages in the information wars, the admiral said, but in the long term, “our principles of being truthful and authentic, and our long-term principles of freedom of the press will prevail because people are smart.”

Within the U.S. military, the Pacific Fleet is known as a joint task force that must be ready to conduct operations in both kinetic and non-kinetic combat scenarios. As part of a broader Pentagon strategy, the Pacific Fleet, like other military components, plans to leverage hightechnology advances in weapons and other capabilities, the commander said.

Key areas include electronic warfare to counter command and control communications, intelligence surveillance, and reconnaissance while protecting Navy command and control.

The Navy also is developing “longrange fires” — advanced strike weapons, and improved abilities to “maneuver dynamically in that environment,” Adm. Paparo said.

Another key area will be improvements in the fleet’s ability to execute precise and timely logistics, he said.

Earlier, during a speech at a conference on information operations, Adm. Paparo said the use of information tools is “first, middle and last” in the effort to prevent war and deter adversaries. The military, in combination with allies and partners, aims to respect the rule of law and international norms while championing freedom, rights and liberties.

Deterring China, as well as hostile powers such as Russia and North Korea, means opposing “expansionism and seizure of land, seas, nutrients and mineral resources by coercion and/or military actions,” Adm. Paparo said.

The People’s Republic of China, he said, is seeking to gain global hegemony through the use of innocuous-sounding phrases like promotion of “common prosperity.”

“This is the system where the PRC is the center and ‘all affairs under heaven’ are determined through their autocracy,” Adm. Paparo said. “Not the rule of law is what we see in the PRC, but it is the ‘rule by law.’” Adm. Paparo rejected Mr. Xi’s claim that China’s drive for global power is about “national rejuvenation.”

“Let’s be clear about what rejuvenation means,” he said. “National rejuvenation means the party control of economies. It means military modernization to support the above, and it means the armed changing of international borders by force.”

The U.S. and its allies are seeking to block Chinese ambitions on a series of fronts: military expansion in the South China Sea, coercion and pressure against Taiwan and Japan’s Senkaku Islands, pressure on India’s border region, and repression of freedoms and liberties in Hong Kong, he said.

“This is not about containing PRC economic and military growth,” he said. “It’s about ensuring that we as a free and sovereign nation ensure their actions, behaviors do not disrupt the peace and stability of the region, or the international rules-based order which … has lifted 60% of the world out of poverty and lifts 160,000 human beings out of poverty each and every single day.”

Adm. Paparo is the second senior Pacifi c Fleet officer to warn of the growing danger of a military conflict over Taiwan.

In September, Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, commander of the Navy’s 7th Fleet, said China’s navy has grown large enough to blockade Taiwan.

Adm. Thomas said he does not know whether China will use its military against Taiwan but said U.S. forces must be ready. He urged that differences be settled peacefully.

“Clearly, if they do something that’s non-kinetic, which, you know, a blockade is less kinetic, then that allows the international community to weigh in and to work together on how we’re going to solve that challenge,” Adm. Thomas told The Wall Street Journal in September.

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #119 on: October 20, 2022, 06:26:00 PM »
Gen. Keane says our war games say we would lose fast and hard.

DougMacG

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Taiwan invasion window, that has to be a 2022 or potentially a 2023 window
« Reply #120 on: October 21, 2022, 08:12:21 AM »
that has to be a 2022 window or potentially a 2023 window, I can’t rule that out."
  - Admiral Mike Gilday, chief of US naval operations

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/467c873a-5078-11ed-af60-3f894fe60060?shareToken=498e92d19ecdcf50907d43b29a80393b

China could invade Taiwan this year, US military chief warns

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/ ^ | October 20 2022 | Didi Tang and Richard Lloyd Parry report
China could invade the self-governed island of Taiwan as soon as this year, a senior US naval commander said. Admiral Mike Gilday, chief of US naval operations, raised the prospect of imminent war yesterday at a discussion hosted by the Atlantic Council in Washington. He was asked about recent official US assessments that China is building the capability to seize Taiwan by 2027. “When we talk about the 2027 window, in my mind that has to be a 2022 window or potentially a 2023 window,” Gilday said. “I can’t rule that out. I don’t mean at all to be alarmist...

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Re: Taiwan invasion window, that has to be a 2022 or potentially a 2023 window
« Reply #121 on: October 21, 2022, 08:31:43 AM »
The PRC sees the fake and gay US military and our bumbling leadership and can't believe their luck.



that has to be a 2022 window or potentially a 2023 window, I can’t rule that out."
  - Admiral Mike Gilday, chief of US naval operations

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/467c873a-5078-11ed-af60-3f894fe60060?shareToken=498e92d19ecdcf50907d43b29a80393b

China could invade Taiwan this year, US military chief warns

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/ ^ | October 20 2022 | Didi Tang and Richard Lloyd Parry report
China could invade the self-governed island of Taiwan as soon as this year, a senior US naval commander said. Admiral Mike Gilday, chief of US naval operations, raised the prospect of imminent war yesterday at a discussion hosted by the Atlantic Council in Washington. He was asked about recent official US assessments that China is building the capability to seize Taiwan by 2027. “When we talk about the 2027 window, in my mind that has to be a 2022 window or potentially a 2023 window,” Gilday said. “I can’t rule that out. I don’t mean at all to be alarmist...

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #122 on: October 26, 2022, 01:51:26 PM »
The ‘Anti-Navy’ the U.S. Needs Against the Chinese Military
The U.S. is set to be weakest when the People’s Liberation Army aims to be strongest.
By Mike Gallagher
Oct. 25, 2022 6:14 pm ET


As Xi Jinping secured a third term as general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party, U.S. foreign policy entered a window of maximum danger. In a speech to the 20th Party Congress, Mr. Xi made clear that unification with Taiwan “must” and “can, without doubt, be realized.”

Secretary of State Antony Blinken admitted that Mr. Xi is moving on a “much faster timeline” to take Taiwan, and Chief of Naval Operations Michael Gilday said he couldn’t rule out an invasion in 2022 or 2023. Domestically, Mr. Xi’s problems—a structural economic slowdown, skyrocketing household debt, and the demographic buzzsaw of the largest group of retirees in human history—will all get worse in the 2030s.

At the same time, Mr. Xi faces an American military that is growing weaker within the decade. As the Heritage Foundation’s recently released 2023 Index of U.S. Military Strength makes clear, because of inadequate budgets, truncated modernization and degraded readiness, the U.S. military is set to be weakest when the People’s Liberation Army aims to be strongest. The report, which for the first time rated the overall state of the U.S. military as “weak,” rated the Navy and Air Force—the two priority forces in the Indo-Pacific—as “weak” and “very weak,” respectively.

Rather than gambling the fate of the free world on Mr. Xi’s restraint, we must learn the lessons from Ukraine and put American hard power in Mr. Xi’s path before it is too late. Long-term investments to rebuild American military superiority in general, and maritime superiority in particular, are critical. But the reality is we won’t be able to build the Navy the nation needs within the next five years.

What we can do now is build an anti-navy—asymmetric forces and weapons designed to target the Chinese Navy, deny control of the seas surrounding Taiwan, and prevent the PLA’s amphibious forces from gaining a lodgment on the island.

The first step in assembling this anti-navy is to build up long-range ground-launched conventional missiles in three rings across the Pacific: (1) the First Island Chain, (2) the Second Island Chain plus the Central Pacific islands, and (3) the outer edges of the theater, including Alaska, Hawaii, and Australia.

As a new report from the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments argues, in the first ring we need shorter-range antiship and air-defense missiles such as the Naval Strike Missile, Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile and SM-6. These weapons would be operated by the Army and Marine Corps, especially in the Southern Japanese and Northern Philippine Islands. Wherever possible, the weapons should be containerized to confuse Chinese targeting.

In the second ring, we need extended-range Maritime Strike Tomahawks and other intermediate-range missiles. In the third ring we need longer-range intermediate missiles with advanced energetic materials in places like Alaska and Australia’s Northern Territory.


The point is that the PLA Rocket Force (China’s anti-navy) has fielded low-cost weapons to keep American ships out of the fight and target American forces concentrated in a few, fixed locations. We must use this logic against China, building an anti-navy that can sink PLA ships and amphibious landing craft at port, in the Taiwan Strait and on Taiwan’s beaches. Long-Range Anti-Ship Missiles cost only about $4 million a unit but could destroy Chinese ships that cost the PLA hundreds of millions of dollars to build. For once, U.S. forces would be on the right side of the cost equation.

The second step in building an anti-navy is to stockpile munitions before the shooting starts. At current rates, it could take two years to boost Javelin production from 2,100 to 4,000 missiles annually. In many cases Chinese companies are the sole source or a primary supplier of key materials used in our missiles. To fix this, the Pentagon should stop buying minimum sustaining rates of critical munitions and start maxing out the capacity of active production lines through multiyear procurement contracts. Drawing on the lessons of Operation Warp Speed, we can modernize the Defense Production Act and use it to provide direct project financing, automatic fast-tracking of permits, and investments in defense workforce training.

The third step is to turn the talk about arming Taiwan to the teeth into reality. This starts with moving Taiwan to the front of the Foreign Military Sales line and clearing the backlog of $14 billion in FMS items that have been approved but not delivered. Congress can go further by providing direct financial assistance to Taiwan and giving the Pentagon the same drawdown authority to provide defense supplies directly to Taiwan that it already has with Ukraine. Rather than demilitarizing hundreds of Harpoon missiles or putting them into deep storage, for instance, the Pentagon could use a Taiwan drawdown authority, make any necessary modernizations and certifications, and send these missiles, along with launchers, to Taiwan.

These steps can deter war within the window of maximum danger. If Republicans gain control of Congress, preventing the same deterrence failure we saw in Ukraine from playing out in Taiwan must be our top priority.

Congress needs to bend the Pentagon bureaucracy, in service of a defense strategy that prioritizes hard power. Doing so demands we understand the paradox of deterrence: that to avoid war, you must convince your adversary that you are both capable and willing to wage war.

If we ignore the hard lessons about hard power that we have learned in Ukraine, if we succumb to the utopian path of disarmament, and if we allow the fear of escalation to dominate our decisions, we will feed Mr. Xi’s appetite for conquest and invite war. By choosing to put an anti-navy in Mr. Xi’s path, we can deter war in the short term and buy time to build a Navy that defeats communism over the long term.

Mr. Gallagher, a Republican, represents Wisconsin’s Eighth Congressional District.

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John Bolton: Taiwan and US need to
« Reply #123 on: November 29, 2022, 06:23:09 AM »


Taiwan and the U.S. Need Statesmanship, Not Partisanship
Without a comprehensive strategy, the island and the West will face a mounting peril from Beijing.
By John Bolton
Nov. 28, 2022 6:26 pm ET



Taiwan’s local elections on Saturday weren’t exactly held under fire, but the threat from China was palpable enough. The island’s competitive voting contrasted sharply with the Chinese Communist Party’s National Congress in October, which effectively made Xi Jinping president for life. Videos of Mr. Xi’s predecessor, Hu Jintao, being forcibly removed from the convention are historic, now underlined by scenes of the Chinese government repressing public protest over its draconian zero-Covid policies.


Taiwan’s local elections typically don’t foretell how the public will vote for the national government. Take President Tsai Ing-wen, who as head of the Democratic Progressive Party won re-election in 2020 by wider margins than in 2016, even though the Chinese Nationalist Party—the Kuomintang, or KMT—made significant inroads in 2018. The KMT again made major gains this election, including Taipei’s mayoralty, despite the DPP’s effort to nationalize the elections by stressing Beijing’s threat.

While Taipei’s domestic politics mirror those of other industrial democracies, few countries face so imminent an existential threat. National attention now turns to 2024, when Ms. Tsai’s last term ends. Shortly after Saturday’s results, Ms. Tsai resigned as DPP leader, opening the way for a new party chairman. All of Taiwan’s political leaders should emulate her approach: less partisanship and more statesmanship for crafting strategies to deter Beijing’s threat to Taiwan and the entire Indo-Pacific.

In the U.S., both parties recognize that Taipei expects Washington to help with the Chinese threat. Nevertheless, it is imperative that America convey its expectations of Taiwan and synchronize strategies. Prioritizing these conversations will decrease isolationist sentiment in the U.S., most recently on display in disagreements over arming Ukraine against Russia. America aids Ukraine because it advances our strategic interests, and Ms. Tsai and other Taiwanese leaders must make their case vigorously, as President Volodymyr Zelensky has done.


By demonstrating seriousness of purpose, Taiwan can refute one canard still alive in Washington: that Taiwan’s citizens are insufficiently committed to their own defense. Geostrategist Edward Luttwak recently wrote in these pages of “the persistent fecklessness” of Taipei’s military preparedness, while its “youth can continue to play video games.” Such criticism is unjustified and corrosive, as Taiwan can’t open itself to criticism that it is free-riding on U.S. political and military aid.

America must stop treating Taiwan’s defense as an exercise in developing a lengthy list of weapons systems to provide. Strategy is more than list-making, however estimable the list, especially given our recent failure to prioritize budgetary and operational matters. In the Ukraine case, the U.S. faces daunting logistical challenges in delivering weapons to Kyiv while also restarting or accelerating production lines to meet the needs of itself and endangered allies such as Taiwan. Promising weapons that are unavailable for several years is empty virtue-signaling. The depletion of U.S. arsenals directly affects our own security, a vulnerability that Washington can no longer ignore.

Taipei urgently needs comprehensive political thinking, too. Its political leaders and diplomats—many of whom are up against Beijing’s “wolf warrior” diplomacy—must begin planning and acting at higher strategic levels than before, integrating existing bilateral efforts into a global grand strategy. The same goes for the U.S. and its allies, who need more-comprehensive strategies to defeat the existential Chinese threat. China has a strategy and is obviously executing it.

Beyond Taiwan, Washington rightly has expectations of other Indo-Pacific allies. We must fully integrate Taiwan into rapidly emerging Indo-Pacific political and military structures for deterrence purposes. Taiwan isn’t merely a “customs territory” but a functionally independent state. Though most nations resist entertaining full diplomatic recognition for Taiwan, this isn’t currently an imperative. Significantly enhancing substantive, near-term political ties is both feasible and more important than the trappings of full diplomatic recognition. Israel has long mastered this complicated role-playing, and Taiwan and its Indo-Pacific neighbors have quietly engaged in the minuet for years.

Now, however, is the time for diplomatic rock ’n’ roll. Let’s prevent whining from isolationists that America didn’t realize what it was undertaking if, sooner rather than later, China provokes a crisis in Taiwan. Taipei is the epicenter of what for Washington could be another “present at the creation” moment—as Harry Truman’s secretary of state, Dean Acheson, described the beginning of the postwar world. The U.S. and all its allies must be ready to perform.

Mr. Bolton is author of “The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir.” He served as the president’s national security adviser, 2018-19, and ambassador to the United Nations, 2005-06.

Crafty_Dog

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Rane: Considering a Chinese invasion of Taiwan, part 1
« Reply #124 on: December 03, 2022, 06:43:44 AM »
Considering a Chinese Invasion of Taiwan, Part 1
9 MIN READDec 2, 2022 | 16:00 GMT



Editor’s Note: This is the first of a two-part column exploring the challenges China would face in a theoretical invasion of Taiwan and the areas where Beijing has already improved its capabilities for such an ambitious military operation. The primary author, Zeke Cooper, is an Applied Geopolitics Fellow at RANE who has conducted significant research on China-Taiwan relations.

We’ve assessed that China is unlikely to invade Taiwan in the next five years. However, as cross-Strait tensions rise, it is important to review the evolution of China’s information and military capabilities, a key factor in forecasting both the likelihood and outcome of any potential conflict. The below analysis is not a full assessment of China’s political will for an invasion, nor is it a full assessment of China’s military capability and capacity. Rather, it’s an exercise to test and challenge our internal assumptions and identify areas for deeper focus.

The Taiwan Question
In August, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) published a white paper entitled “The Taiwan Question and China's Reunification in the New Era.” The document reiterated the long-held position that the island is a part of the People’s Republic of China, stating that “resolving the Taiwan question and realizing China's complete reunification is a shared aspiration of all the sons and daughters of the Chinese nation.”

This assertion lies at the heart of Beijing’s “right” to stop any move toward formal Taiwanese independence, and has been informally codified internationally through the willingness of many countries to adhere to Beijing’s “One China” policy. While Chinese President Xi Jinping’s stated goal remains peaceful reunification, the Chinese leadership does not rule out military options and has stepped up defense reforms, arms procurement and training to ensure China has sufficient capabilities in a future Taiwan war scenario.

Russia’s ongoing conflict in Ukraine has reinvigorated assertions in Western media and political spheres that China may be preparing to invade Taiwan. But the Ukraine conflict has also reminded Beijing of the difficulties of using war to achieve political aims. A direct comparison between Ukraine and Taiwan is also flawed. Taiwan represents a maritime military operation, a different logistical consideration from Russia’s land war in Ukraine. Taiwan’s separation from mainland China also occurred decades before Ukraine’s from Russia, and Moscow has been engaged in direct military action and occupation of parts of Ukraine since at least 2014. On the other hand, NATO — which sits astride Ukraine — includes several former members of the Soviet Union or former East Bloc countries, potentially limiting Russia’s willingness to press the Ukraine crisis beyond that nation’s borders. The Indo-Pacific has no such formal multilateral alliance, and the maritime space may provide China with additional room for military operations and an easier ability to disrupt foreign military supplies to the island.

Any Chinese action must consider not only the maritime nature of the conflict but also the role of the United States. Beijing must either deter or degrade U.S. capabilities to be successful in using military coercion to shape Taiwan’s political future. For Beijing, that is both a physical and political task — the former demonstrating China’s military capabilities and reach, and the latter its use of information as a tool of political warfare to shape the environment. China has substantially increased its deterrence capability over the past two decades, raising the cost of U.S. intervention, but Beijing must still consider U.S. political will.

As we review a theoretical war over a Chinese invasion of Taiwan, we will look at three basic phases: Shaping the Environment, the Initial Invasion, and Consolidating Gains. Each phase focuses on different Chinese capabilities, and different aspects of potential U.S. or international intervention.

Shaping the Environment
China considers warfare a constant reality, even if not always carried out by force. The CPC has invested heavily in narrative warfare, designed to shape the perceptions of rivals from peacetime through kinetic warfare. One construct is the so-called three warfares (sanzhan), consisting of psychological warfare (xinlizhan), public opinion warfare (yulunzhan) and legal warfare (faluzhan). The first targets perceptions abroad, creating uncertainty and disunity in opposing societies and governments. The second focuses heavily on domestic propaganda, ensuring national political and social cohesion and support. And the third focuses on shaping Chinese actions within global legal frameworks, even if Beijing’s own interpretations are somewhat unique.

Domestically, China would use information operations and narrative warfare to shape public perceptions and build support for any future conflict. By drawing on historical examples from the so-called “century of humiliation” that China suffered at the hands of foreign powers from the 1840s-1940s, the CCP would continue to promote narratives that it aims to protect Taiwan from foreign influence. The CCP might portray the Taiwanese government as captured by so-called “separatists” and oppressive to its people, and thus justify the invasion under a humanitarian pretense. Under such conditions, Chinese nationalists would champion a forceful reunification with Taiwan in order to supposedly save it from foreign domination.

Already, Beijing emphasizes that any change in the status quo around Taiwan is driven by Western “interference,” and that it is the West, led by the United States, which is ratcheting up tensions and goading Taiwan to break from China. This places blame for any outbreak of conflict on the United States and allows Beijing to assert it is in a defensive war, something that will resonate more strongly domestically than an offensive operation. Beijing has already used this narrative to defend Russia’s invasion of Ukraine as an act of “self-defense.”

China would also use information operations in Taiwan to discourage political unity and reduce support for any formal move toward de jure independence. Simple narratives the CPC would likely deploy include highlighting the close cultural and historical ties between Taiwan and the mainland, the economic advantages of close cooperation, and the physical devastation of a potential invasion.

The narrative of defending Taiwan from outside meddling also helps China shape international views — predominantly among developing nations in the global south, potentially weakening condemnation in the United Nations and reducing support for any Western sanctions or other coercive or punitive measures against Beijing. While Beijing’s overseas information operations have not been as sophisticated as those of Russia, Chinese capabilities are improving; in particular, they have been more effective in both Chinese-language areas and in countries still struggling with postcolonial identities (especially in sub-Saharan Africa and Latin America).

Information warfare and physical warfare intersect in Beijing’s positioning of military assets, demonstration of capabilities and assertion of doctrine. Perceptions of China’s capabilities and political will in both Taiwan and elsewhere are shaped by China’s efforts to demonstrate greater range, accuracy and maneuverability of longer-range anti-ship missiles, build up artificial islands in the South China Sea as bases of operations for anti-ship and/or anti-aircraft systems, carry out frequent air incursions around Taiwan, and conduct expanded combined arms exercises near the island. For China, these actions are both part of the preparation for any theoretical conflict that may erupt, but also ways to avoid confrontation in the first place by showing the supposed costs that would follow Taiwan moving closer to de jure independence.

On the one hand, repeated incursions by Chinese fighter jets over Taiwan overwhelm and desensitize Taiwan’s sensors to Chinese violations of their airspace and give Chinese forces valuable knowledge. Over 900 Chinese military aircraft entered Taiwan’s southwestern airspace last year — more than double the roughly 380 aircraft that did so in 2020. And in just August 2022 alone, 446 Chinese aircraft entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone in response to U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s controversial visit to Taiwan. By probing the weapons engagement zones of integrated air defense systems, China’s military — known as the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) — could develop a profile of Taiwan’s defensive tactics, techniques, and procedures (TTPs) to exploit in a future conflict.

On the other hand, if Beijing can show that it has the ability to quickly overwhelm Taiwanese defenses, or deter and disrupt U.S. military activity in the region, it can weaken Taiwanese confidence in active U.S. support and create uncertainty inside the United States itself — raising questions of the cost-benefit analysis of facing off against China just to preserve Taiwan’s de facto independence.

Preparations for potential conflict in Taiwan would need to begin months or even years before the operation. Resources, personnel and material would be marshaled from across mainland China and staged near sea and air points of departure. China understands it will be impossible to conceal the movement of forces from the overhead intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems. Civilian and military space-based sensors will observe areas of interest to provide indications and warnings of an impending attack. Thus, obfuscation rather than concealment will be China’s strategy.

Rather than conceal troop and equipment movements, the PLA will conduct a series of large-scale exercises to desensitize allied sensors, increasing the likelihood that the movement of large numbers of personnel and resources would be interpreted as routine or escalating exercises rather than staging for an invasion. However, the presence of medical infrastructure, recovery equipment or salvage vessels might be a reliable indicator of imminent action, as would the wide-scale retrofitting of commercial cargo vessels to carry military assets (e.g. with heavy-duty decking). This plan might also suffer from the fact that Russia tried nearly this precise same strategy before invading Ukraine, which U.S. intelligence officials repeatedly warned publicly was a thinly veiled preparation for an attack.

This active phase of environment shaping has the greatest potential for accidental escalation. The PLA would likely conduct larger and longer operations closer to the territorial waters of Taiwan, especially live-fire exercises involving forces off the east coast of the island, which signal Beijing’s willingness and capability to interfere with any foreign reinforcement of Taiwan’s capabilities. Beijing might also dispatch a constant rotational seaborne presence on Taiwan’s east coast to validate its ability to cordon off the island and potentially disrupt U.S.-led forces if hostilities break out. Taiwanese forces may amend their TTPs to meet or closely observe Chinese vessels or aircraft within their territory. The United States would likely increase its freedom of navigation operations, defense training and exercises, and close surveillance of the waters near Taiwan. The heightened pace of activity increases the risk of miscalculation or accidental collision, something that in a tense environment could lead to rapid escalation.

In the second part of this column, we’ll look at what an initial invasion of Taiwan may look like and the steps China needs to take to consolidate its gains should such an invasion succeed.

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D1: Taiwan
« Reply #128 on: January 09, 2023, 08:48:39 AM »
Beijing's Taiwan saber-rattling continues: China flew nearly 60 aircraft close to Taiwan—and just as a group of German lawmakers visited the self-governing island that China's Communist leaders claim as they own. Along with four navy vessels, Beijing's military spread out to cover three of the four cardinal approaches to the island. China says it was practicing "land-strikes and sea assaults," according to a statement from its Eastern Theater Command.
Twenty-eight of those aircraft "crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait, and entered Taiwan's southwest air defense identification zone," according to Taiwan's military, which called the actions an "irrational provocation" that threatens the security of the Taiwan Strait. (The U.S. Navy transited that strait on Thursday.)
Christmas Day was the last time a comparable number of Chinese aircraft flew near Taiwan, when 71 aircraft and 7 naval vessels bracketed the island's western and northwestern approaches.
"We seek neither escalation nor conflict!" Taiwan's military tweeted just a few hours after the Monday activity. Reuters and the Associated Press have more.
New: Another think tank just reviewed two dozen war scenarios for a Chinese invasion of Taiwan in 2026, and found it would be especially deadly for all sides—China, Taiwan, and the U.S., which would presumably rush to Taipei's defense. The two main questions asked by analysts in their wargame included, "would the invasion succeed and at what cost?" according to CNN. The answers are "no," and "enormous" costs, according to the think tankers at the Washington-based Center for Strategic and International Studies.
"In most scenarios, the US Navy lost two aircraft carriers and 10 to 20 large surface combatants" in the notional fighting, CNN reports. What's more, "Approximately 3,200 US troops would be killed in three weeks of combat," which is "nearly half of what the US lost in two decades of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan." CSIS also estimated China would lose about 10,000 troops as well as 155 aircraft and 138 ships.
And Taiwan? The island's army would lose about 3,500 soldiers, and all of the navy's 26 destroyers and frigates would be lost. Japan, too, would suffer—including the probable loss of "more than 100 combat aircraft and 26 warships," according to CNN. Read on, here.


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Re: Sim Game says we could win at high cost
« Reply #130 on: January 10, 2023, 10:45:29 AM »
https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2023/jan/9/us-defeats-china-simulated-war-over-taiwan-costs-a/?utm_source=Boomtrain&utm_medium=subscriber&utm_campaign=morning&utm_term=newsletter&utm_content=morning&bt_ee=GUOTbXjtfWHRTFf%2FHBRYW4TWHnQrievuMQeFaci6reV%2FT9fi5sBC0swCy0ImnP0a&bt_ts=1673355021525

We kept hearing otherwise.  I like this analysis better.  Previous simulations mentioned US versus China without mentioning allies such as Japan.  This is more realisti, IMHO.

"Such losses would damage the U.S. global position for many years."

  - I believe it would hurt China's position worse as the aggressor and perhaps the loser.

Important point, 'limiting the attacks on the China mainland.'.

If both sides can contain the war to the straits, to Taiwan and to the military facilities we might avoid total Armageddon..

The casualty counts seem realistic.

I presume China's calculations are similar and that is why they haven't attacked yet.

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #131 on: January 10, 2023, 11:13:03 AM »
Are American people up to the costs in lives and equipment?

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #132 on: January 10, 2023, 12:14:28 PM »
Are American people up to the costs in lives and equipment?

No.  Looks like they didn't figure that in.  If we were up for it, that is the deterrent.  If we aren't, then they will strike. The casualties are all in the first 3 weeks?  How does it even get debated in Congress in that time?  The simulation is a hypothetical, I guess.

In a future war with China, we will wish we hadn't given up the strategic island of Taiwan back in 2023. And giving up Taiwan makes that future war more likely.

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War Games suggest bolster Taiwan NOW
« Reply #133 on: January 14, 2023, 11:49:25 AM »
https://www.foxnews.com/world/war-game-suggests-u-s-needs-bolster-taiwans-defenses-now-avoid-heavy-casualties?fbclid=IwAR1eLpH4MOVggniA3nazZeeeR5YzEslQBk4G-X1xwq6iuh2aps5OgnHtEKE

"Mark Cancian, the author behind the war game report, said the U.S. needs to do more to bolster Taiwan's security in the Pacific, saying the U.S. cannot send weapons after the invasion like it did in Ukraine. ''Chinese air and naval capabilities are strong enough that they can prevent any reinforcements from getting on to Taiwan. So, Taiwan will need to have all of its equipment before the conflict begins,'' Cancian told Fox News."


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FA: Taiwan and US need to seriously up their game
« Reply #135 on: January 25, 2023, 07:37:28 AM »



Taiwan’s Urgent Task
A Radical New Strategy to Keep China Away
By Michael Brown
January 25, 2023
https://www.foreignaffairs.com/china/taiwan-urgent-task-new-strategy-to-keep-china-away

Since the Ukraine war began, a growing number of U.S. officials have stressed the urgency of deterring Chinese military action against Taiwan. President Xi Jinping’s comments in October reinforced this view when he declared that China was prepared to take “all measures necessary” against foreign “interference” on the island and that “the wheels of history are rolling on toward China’s reunification” with it. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken warned that Beijing may intend to seize Taiwan on a “much faster timeline” than previously thought.

Despite this assessment, the United States has not devoted sufficient attention to the current approach to deterrence—and whether it is adequate to meet an accelerated threat. For years, Taiwan has been preparing for a conventional war with China, for which it has acquired big military hardware from the United States, such as Abrams tanks and F-16 jets. But Taiwan cannot match China in these categories, and a direct military confrontation is one that it cannot win. Moreover, despite its long-standing policy of strategic ambiguity, Washington has suggested that it would come to Taiwan’s aid if China invaded. Yet the United States has not taken adequate steps to put military resources in place and increase its own capacity to resupply those resources in anticipation of such an event. 

A Chinese invasion of Taiwan would not resemble the Ukraine conflict in which the United States and its allies have been able to build economic sanctions and supply Ukraine with increasingly powerful weapons over many months. Given Taiwan’s location—only 100 miles from the Chinese mainland and 5,000 miles from the headquarters of the United States Indo-Pacific Command in Hawaii—Washington would not have time to prepare a response once an invasion was underway. Were the United States to come to Taiwan’s defense without sufficient planning, the outcome could be truly catastrophic. If China and the United States go to war, there would be few incentives for either side to back down and numerous paths to rapid escalation. With the prospect of a historically destructive conflict looming, ensuring effective deterrence is the most critical U.S. national security challenge in Asia, and by far the most urgent.

Given the growing threat of an invasion, deterring China will require a far more proactive approach. Taiwan must redesign the way that its forces are organized, armed, and deployed so that it can deny China a rapid victory. At the same time, Washington needs to evolve its own policy, making clear that direct military support is available to Taiwan today and would be strengthened if an invasion were to take place. Above all, by their actions and preparations, the United States and Taiwan must seek to significantly raise the uncertainty in Xi’s mind about whether military action against the island would succeed. Deterrence failed in Ukraine, and the United States must ensure that it does not fail in Taiwan.

THE PANDA AND THE PORCUPINE 

Any effective deterrence strategy against China must begin with Taiwan’s own defenses. The United States needs to signal to Beijing that Taiwan will resist an invasion just as fiercely and creatively as Ukraine has. To be credible, Taiwan should double the proportion of its budget reserved for defense and double its current troop strength of 169,000.  At present, Taipei spends about $19 billion on defense, a figure that pales in comparison with China’s $293 billion. And although Taiwan will not be able to close the gap with China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA), it can greatly increase deterrence with a stronger and more prepared military. The goal must be to deny easy access to the island and cause significant damage to attacking Chinese forces, buying time for the United States and allies to assist.

But U.S. and Taiwanese officials must also recognize the lopsided threat Taiwan faces. Historically, Taiwan has spent its defense budget on equipping its military for a head-on conflict with China, including through the extensive purchase of U.S. tanks and fighter jets. But given the overwhelming numbers of tanks, ships, and airplanes that China can now field, this is not an effective use of procurement funds. For example, although Taiwan now has 400 fighter jets and 800 tanks, its forces are dwarfed by China’s 1,600 fighters and 6,300 tanks. China also has 450 bombers, nine nuclear submarines, two aircraft carriers, and other equipment that Taiwan does not possess. And in terms of manpower, China has a standing army of more than two million soldiers—nearly 12 times as many as Taiwan.

Faced with this dramatic force disparity, Taiwan would be better off developing asymmetric capabilities that can thwart superior firepower. The Taiwanese government could, for example, purchase the data as a service (DaaS) from dedicated commercial satellites, which could provide imagery of what and how many Chinese forces are amassing to provide as much early warning as possible. Synthetic aperture radar (SAR) satellites, for example, can provide images of the earth with resolution down to a third of a meter and, unlike traditional optical satellites, can operate through cloud cover and at night. SAR images have become a game changer for  Ukrainian forces, giving Kyiv a real-time view of Russian tanks, trucks, and ground forces.  Moreover, since this technology is available commercially, neither the Taiwanese nor the U.S. military need to own the satellites or the rockets to launch them.


Swarming drones and autonomous undersea vessels could help thwart China’s invasion plans.
Taiwan should also build a resilient and flexible communications network. Ukraine has shown the effectiveness of SpaceX’s Starlink system, which has allowed the country to withstand repeated attacks on its infrastructure without losing communications for its military or its citizens. Taiwan should establish a similar space-to-ground system to ensure uninterrupted communications availability during an invasion. Additionally, Taiwan should invest more resources into both cyberdefenses—to protect its critical infrastructure—and, with the assistance of U.S. Cyber Command, offensive cyber-capabilities to disrupt PLA operations during an attack.

As Ukrainian forces have demonstrated, Taiwan can strengthen its military with smaller, smarter weapons. Admiral Lorin Selby and I, as well as former State Department senior adviser James Timbie and Admiral James O. Ellis, Jr., have argued that Taiwan could enhance its forces by acquiring “a large number of small things”—weapons that can provide robust deterrence against an invading force, serving as a hedge to the large weapons platforms China is expecting to encounter. Examples of these include smart mines (which can be turned on and off); over-the-horizon, long-range antiship missiles (Harpoons); Javelin antitank missiles; and antiaircraft defenses such as the High Mobility Artillery Rocket System (HIMARS). All of these weapons have proven valuable in Ukraine. For Taiwan to be able to use them, however, they will need to already be in place at the time of a Chinese attack.

Yet another way for Taiwan to enhance its deterrence would be to acquire more unmanned military systems. Such autonomous technology includes small drones that can swarm in the air; solar-powered surface vessels for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance; and undersea vessels that can gather intelligence or intercept enemy vessels. A combination of these systems would give Taiwan more comprehensive intelligence and, potentially, the power to intercept vessels across the Pacific—capabilities it currently lacks. The United States is already demonstrating the benefits of such technologies today with the navy’s Task Force 59, set up to integrate unmanned systems, sensor data, and artificial intelligence into maritime operations.  Combined with enhanced satellite imagery, these capabilities would hinder the ability of China’s naval forces to project power or operate undetected in Taiwanese waters.

But asymmetric and autonomous capabilities alone will not be enough to withstand a Chinese invasion. Taiwanese forces will also need immediate access to fuel, munitions, food, and medical supplies to sustain their defense efforts in the opening phase of any attack. The United States should preposition these supplies to be accessible before a potential Chinese offensive or naval blockade. Currently, for example, Taiwan has only a seven-day fuel supply—for all its needs as a nation—concentrated in tanks on its west coast. By distributing ample fuel and other supplies around the island as well as on nearby islands, the United States and its allies can help Taiwan withstand an initial attack and prevent China from blocking crucial supply lines. The goal should be to transform Taiwan into what many have called an indigestible porcupine, brimming with asymmetric military capabilities that would surprise and frustrate any invading force.

STRATEGIC AMBIGUITY, PRACTICAL COMMITMENT

As Beijing steps up its pressure on Taiwan, the United States has confronted a growing dilemma. On the one hand, U.S. President Joe Biden has repeated publicly four times that the United States will not stand idly by if China moves to seize Taiwan. But on the other hand, according to its long-standing policy of strategic ambiguity, the United States is not explicitly committed to defending the island, reserving instead the right to respond if an attack occurs. Clearly, this wait-and-see approach no longer serves U.S. interests. If the United States is not prepared in advance with prepositioned materiel on the island and the immediate capacity to resupply Taiwan, the administration’s statements become empty rhetoric. Yet abandoning strategic ambiguity as a policy would be a direct provocation to Beijing and would likely lead to an escalatory response.

Fortunately, the United States has another option. Without formally changing policy, Washington can provide Taiwan the military resources it needs before an invasion occurs. In doing so, the U.S. government can demonstrate to Beijing that China will face stiff resistance to any military action and that it is ready to supply the island with war materiel for an extended conflict. As a first step, the United States needs to stockpile on Taiwan such weapons as Harpoons, Stingers, Javelins, and HIMARS launchers. At the same time, Congress should authorize the Pentagon to aggressively ramp up production of these systems.

Equally important, Washington must eliminate the bottlenecks it has faced in supplying missiles and other munitions to Ukraine. A crucial vulnerability has been the production of so-called energetics—a broad category of explosives, propellants, and other material needed for ammunition, rocket and missile motors, and other devices. Because the United States has not fought a sustained conflict with a peer competitor in years, it has severely underinvested in energetics production, with the result that the Defense Department has struggled to resupply Stinger missiles to Ukraine. In the case of Taiwan, such a delay could prove devastating, as even a few weeks could determine the outcome of the war.

The United States should pre-position war materiel on and around Taiwan.

To avoid these logjams, the Pentagon needs to break the paradigm of single-year defense appropriations, which have in the past limited its ability to invest in greater production capacity.  As William LaPlante, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, has observed, by moving to multiyear appropriations, the U.S. would be far better equipped to increase production capacity of energetics in a sustained way. Representative Mike Gallagher  from Wisconsin, a Republican member of the House Armed Services Committee and chair of the House’s new Select Committee on China, has further suggested using the Defense Production Act to achieve more rapid stockpiles of munitions, provide project financing for munitions vendors, fast-track permits for vendors to expand capacity, and invest in workforce training. As the COVID-19 crisis made clear, the Defense Production Act gives the president broad authority to mobilize the private sector to meet a national emergency. To prepare for an extended conflict with China, the government needs to identify now which manufacturers will need to be tapped and for what items. Having such plans in place with preapproved funds to pay for them would itself have an important deterrent value.

In addition, Congress should give top priority to delivering the $19 billion in arms that Taiwan has already ordered, including Harpoon and Javelin missiles. Congress should also provide Taiwan the same drawdown authority to deliver weapons from current U.S. stockpiles as Ukraine has and appropriate funds for direct military assistance as it has with Ukraine. This would enable the Pentagon to send military supplies directly to Taiwan as well as weapons that might otherwise be decommissioned.   

Lastly, the administration must continue its efforts to strengthen regional alliances such as AUKUS, the trilateral security pact among Australia, the United Kingdom, and the United States, and the Quad (Quadrilateral Security Dialogue), a coalition including Australia, India, Japan, and the United States. Beijing needs to know that a united front stands ready to assist Taiwan in the event of an unprovoked attack. Washington and its allies should also declare in advance a set of financial sanctions and trade embargoes that would be triggered by any Chinese military action against Taiwan. Such a declaration would clearly signal to Beijing the severe economic crisis that an unprovoked attack would cause—a prospect that may, in fact, be more persuasive in deterring the Chinese leadership than fear of U.S. military action.

LESS RED TAPE, MORE DETERRENCE

In addition to improving its military stockpiles and munitions capacity, the U.S. Department of Defense should accelerate its own development of the asymmetric systems that will help transform Taiwan into a porcupine. One type of such technology is small, unmanned electric aircraft. Currently in development as air taxis, these aircraft do not need runways and can amplify Taiwan’s air forces at relatively low cost. Other examples include autonomous floating barges that could serve as logistics platforms and could be positioned where needed; underwater drones that can gather intelligence or intercept enemy vessels; and small satellites serving as multispectral sensors, providing Taipei with precise images of enemy force movements within a large radius of the island.

A crucial advantage of these new technologies is the element of surprise they would bring to Taiwan’s military response. After all, the Chinese military has stolen U.S. aircraft designs and studied U.S. military operations around the globe for decades to prepare for a potential conflict.  But since many of the asymmetric systems are new and can be fielded in only one to two years, they introduce capabilities that China is little prepared for. The more these systems create uncertainty and the greater their number, the more difficult it will be for the Chinese military to have confidence in its invasion plans. At the same time, these commercial capabilities also have the benefit of being lower cost than traditional defense platforms, and since they are unclassified, they can be readily shared with U.S. allies. In short, the United States can intensify deterrence without a dramatic shift in official policy and without enormous cost—provided it acts now.


The Pentagon needs to get new technologies to Taiwan faster.

In order to help Taiwan acquire these new systems, the U.S. Department of Defense will need to significantly streamline its procurement process. Currently, the department buys commercial items such as small drones the same way it buys fighter jets: after specifying what it wants to buy, the department enters a lengthy acquisition process with the desired weapon system funded through multiyear program requests. This means that even when funds are planned and agreed upon at the Pentagon, it can take years before Congress appropriates the money. In fact, on average, planning for every dollar the Pentagon spends begins 24 to 30 months earlier. To reform this process for commercial items, the Pentagon needs to eliminate unnecessary steps, such as the requirement to define the specifications for items that the commercial world is already building. It also needs to leverage more efficient federal purchasing mechanisms—such as Other Transaction Authority—and ask Congress for enough budget flexibility to buy lots of small things in a given fiscal year.

With such reforms in place, the U.S. government should be able to quickly identify the most valuable commercial technologies, determine which vendors can best provide them, and allocate funds to acquire them on a cycle that keeps apace with the development of new systems. For Taiwan, this would open up a host of new technologies from U.S. vendors that could be immediately deployed for enhanced defense.

Finally, the Defense Department should include Taiwan in its joint military exercises. Today’s exercises in the Indo-Pacific involve many nations’ forces, including those of Australia, Japan, South Korea, and the United States. Yet they do not include Taiwan. Although China would regard such participation as provocative, U.S. diplomats can point out that the Chinese initiated the provocation by increasingly flying into Taiwanese airspace and crossing the maritime line dividing China and Taiwan with growing frequency.

CHANGING XI’S CALCULUS

Some of these steps will take years to complete. But by initiating them now, the United States can signal to Beijing, and to Xi in particular, that invading or blockading Taiwan would set off a confrontation that China could lose. By making the island difficult to conquer, Taiwan and the United States may be able to change Chinese thinking about an invasion, persuading Xi that it would be far better to continue strong rhetoric about reunification than to succumb to self-imposed pressure to seize Taiwan by force.

Beijing already has reasons to avoid a new geopolitical crisis. After all, Xi is already contending with many challenges at home, including dramatically slower economic growth (in part due to Beijing’s failed zero-COVID policies), an increasingly skeptical set of trading partners, and the biggest aging demographic crisis of any nation in history. And these leave aside the dire economic implications of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan: beyond the costs of a war, if China cannot get semiconductors from Taiwan, it would precipitate a collapse of the 70 percent of the world’s electronics that China produces and largely exports. If the United States and other countries lose access to semiconductors, a global depression will result. An unsuccessful effort to seize Taiwan, on top of these other challenges, might mean the end of Xi’s tenure in power and, possibly, the end of the Chinese Communist Party as the ruling regime.

But if the West appears complacent or distracted, Xi may see opportunity. To change his calculus, Taiwan, the United States, and its allies must show they are resolute about thwarting an invasion. With China’s increasingly bellicose declarations about retaking the island, time is running out for Washington to demonstrate commitment through action.

Crafty_Dog

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McCarthy to Taiwan?
« Reply #136 on: January 25, 2023, 02:15:16 PM »
Taiwan, U.S.: House Speaker McCarthy Plans Visit to Taiwan This Spring
1 MIN READJan 24, 2023 | 20:47 GMT





What Happened: The Pentagon is planning for U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy to visit Taiwan later this year, and the White House says the visit will likely happen in the spring, Punchbowl News reported Jan. 23.

Why It Matters: If McCarthy's visit is confirmed and carried out, it could normalize house speaker visits to Taiwan and spur a Chinese response similar to that seen when former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited Taiwan in August 2022, potentially including more live-fire military drills around Taiwan. These events could sully recent U.S.-China efforts to ease tensions and sway Taiwanese politics ahead of the January 2024 presidential election. However, it is unclear whether Taiwanese citizens would blame the ruling and comparatively anti-China Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for escalating the conflict with China or rally behind the party in the face of Chinese aggression, as they did leading up to the January 2020 election.

Background: China responded to Pelosi's visit to Taiwan with the largest live-fire drills near Taiwan in a quarter century.


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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #137 on: January 26, 2023, 06:57:37 PM »
"Independent Taiwan. Eighteen House Republicans introduced a resolution calling on the U.S. to recognize Taiwan as a sovereign, independent state and to resume formal diplomatic ties. It also calls for the establishment of a bilateral free trade agreement. The new speaker of the House is expected to visit Taipei in April."

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NRO: Air Force general sees war in 2025
« Reply #138 on: January 29, 2023, 07:21:13 PM »
U.S. General Warns Country Could Be at War with China by 2025
By BRITTANY BERNSTEIN
January 28, 2023 11:48 AM

A four-star Air Force general said in a memo on Friday that he believes the U.S. will be at war with China by 2025, according to a new report.

“I hope I am wrong,” General Mike Minihan, who leads the Air Mobility Command (AMC), said in a memo to AMC personnel obtained by NBC News.

“My gut tells me we will fight in 2025,” he added. “[Chinese President] Xi [Jinping] secured his third term and set his war council in October 2022. Taiwan’s presidential elections are in 2024 and will offer Xi a reason. United States’ presidential elections are in 2024 and will offer Xi a distracted America. Xi’s team, reason, and opportunity are all aligned for 2025.”

He went on to tell personnel to accept increased risk in training in preparation for a “China fight.” Minihan also says during the month of February, all personnel should “fire a clip into a 7-meter target with the full understanding that unrepentant lethality matters most. Aim for the head.”

He called on those in his command to update their records and emergency contacts to “ensure they are legally ready and prepared” in March.

AMC has almost 50,000 service members and nearly 500 planes and is responsible for transport and refueling, per NBC.

A Defense Department spokesperson disputed Minihan’s comments, saying they are “not representative of the department’s view on China.”

“The National Defense Strategy makes clear that China is the pacing challenge for the Department of Defense and our focus remains on working alongside allies and partners to preserve a peaceful, free and open Indo-Pacific,” Defense Department press secretary Brigadier General Patrick Ryder told NBC News.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2023, 07:24:43 PM by Crafty_Dog »