Author Topic: Taiwan  (Read 1373 times)

G M

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Crafty_Dog

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WSJ: Help Taiwan with Trade Deal
« Reply #52 on: August 05, 2022, 04:29:06 PM »
Another Way to Help Taiwan—and America
The U.S. can ease the pressure of China’s economic coercion with a bilateral trade deal.
By The Editorial BoardFollow
Aug. 5, 2022 6:25 pm ET



China is trying to show the world this week that it can isolate Taiwan, with a show of live-fire military exercises and trade restrictions. One non-military way the U.S. can respond is by expanding economic and free-trade ties with the island democracy.


Beijing claims its escalations are a response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan this week. After meeting with President Tsai Ing-wen, the House Speaker said she discussed “a trade agreement that might be possible and soon.” That’s good news, and the Democrats now running Washington could move with dispatch to help Taiwan withstand China’s economic coercion.

With $114.1 billion in two-way trade, Taiwan was America’s eighth largest merchandise trading partner last year, outpacing India, France and Italy. Taiwan was the 10th largest U.S. export market and the seventh largest source of imports. But there’s room to grow, and Taiwan made a goodwill overture with its recent removal of barriers to U.S. beef and pork. Taiwan’s agricultural imports from the U.S. in 2021 rose 18% to $3.94 billion.

Yet the White House has been slow to move on a Taiwan trade deal, as it also has been on trade in the entire Asia-Pacific region. In May the Biden Administration launched the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework as a way to deepen U.S. economic engagement. Taiwan’s chief trade negotiator said this spring that it hoped to become a “full member.” But the island was excluded from the framework.


Taiwan’s consolation prize is a U.S.-Taiwan Initiative on 21st Century Trade launched in June. But this effort overlaps with the existing U.S.-Taiwan Economic Prosperity Partnership Dialogue. Neither the Indo-Pacific Economic Framework nor the U.S.-Taiwan trade initiative include negotiations on market access, which limits their economic impact.

Far better would be a bilateral free-trade deal. And if Mrs. Pelosi is serious about countering China’s attempt to isolate Taiwan, she could support renewal of the expired trade promotion authority that allows the White House to fast-track trade deals in Congress.

The Congressional Research Service has identified Taiwanese barriers to agriculture, digital services, biotech and medical devices as among the U.S. trade concerns. Trade promotion authority would facilitate negotiations over these issues and reassure Taiwan that Congress won’t rewrite a deal once it is signed by the Biden Administration.

China’s pressure campaign underscores the urgency as it conducts live-fire exercises in six areas around Taiwan. This is an escalation compared to China’s exercises in 1995 and 1996 in a previous Taiwan Strait crisis. The disruption to air and ship traffic amounts to a temporary blockade. Beijing knows its military intimidation can change the risk calculus of business and deter foreign investment in Taiwan.

On Monday China barred shipments from more than 100 Taiwanese food exporters. Later in the week it banned Taiwanese citrus, as well as two kinds of fish. Bloomberg reports that Beijing has now blocked nearly a third of Taiwanese food items.

China is Taiwan’s largest trade partner, and Beijing is betting that Taiwanese businesses will push for conciliation with the Mainland if it increases the economic pain. A trade deal with the U.S. would reassure Taiwanese that the U.S. will stay engaged economically. And it would also reassure the rest of Asia, especially Japan and the Asean countries of Southeast Asia, that the U.S. is there to stay

Crafty_Dog

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Stratfor: What to make of China's military drills?
« Reply #53 on: August 05, 2022, 07:26:12 PM »
second

What to Make of China's Military Drills Near Taiwan
10 MIN READAug 5, 2022 | 22:02 GMT


China's military drills in response to U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan will not trigger an immediate military escalation, though they underscore Beijing's options for political, military and economic retaliation against the United States, Taiwan and other rivals, as well as the limitations of regional stabilization efforts. Pelosi met with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen in Taipei on Aug. 3 after arriving on the island a day earlier. In response, China's defense ministry announced live-fire drills for Aug. 4-7 in six areas in the waters surrounding Taiwan. Then on Aug. 4, Taiwan's Maritime and Port Bureau claimed that China had added a seventh area and extended the maritime drill through to 10 am local time on Aug. 8. The drills have so far involved Chinese naval and aerial incursions across the Taiwan Strait median line (a de facto dividing line between the two countries) and missile tests in the designated areas. Amid the first day of these drills on Aug. 4, Japan's defense ministry reported that at least four missiles had flown directly over Taiwan's capital city of Taipei before landing in the waters east of Taiwan, and five missiles had landed within Japan's claimed exclusive economic zone, though all were still within predetermined drill areas.

The live-fire drills are targeting waters north of Taiwan (near the port cities of Taipei and Keelung), as well as in the Taiwan Strait west of the island and in the sea east of the island. To Taiwan's south, exercises are also being held off the coasts of Kaohsiung and Anping, as well as in an area further out in the Luzon Strait.

The last time China conducted live-fire drills of this scale was in 1995-1996, but they were farther from Taiwan's shores and concentrated primarily on the areas west of Taiwan, not further afield in the seas east of Taiwan. The areas designated for the current drills, however, overlap in some places with Taiwan's territorial waters, and thus missile strikes in these waters can qualify as acts of aggression, although Taiwan and foreign powers will be motivated to respond to these drills with restraint.

The drills are primarily intended to both express Beijing's dismay with the U.S. diplomatic trip to Taiwan and convince Taipei that such collaboration with the outside world is not worth bearing Beijing's retaliation. Since the founding of the People's Republic of China in 1949, Beijing has viewed Taiwan as its sovereign territory and pledged to ''reunify'' with Taiwan by whatever means necessary, including the use of force. When foreign dignitaries counter this narrative by visiting Taiwan and de facto supporting the island's sovereignty, Beijing has often responded with sanctions, trade restrictions, shows of military force, and freezes on diplomatic channels. As with previous military drills, Beijing intends to deter the Taiwanese government and people from moving toward de jure independence and closer defense relations with the United States.

More broadly, China's latest drills are meant to remind its rivals of the military and economic costs of supporting Taiwan. For Beijing, these drills can help deter Asian and Western businesses from supporting Taiwan's sovereignty by showing the wide-scale disruption China can cause to global shipping in the Taiwan Strait in response to developments involving the island. The expansion of the geographic area and duration of drills, moreover, signals China's ability to impose a de facto embargo on Taiwan's main ports in future, and thereby decimate global maritime traffic. Indeed, China's state news and military coverage of the drills has directly confirmed this intent by stating the drills would provide training for implementing a ''maritime blockade'', ''air-to-air interception'', and the ''sealing and control'' of Taiwan and the surrounding waters. China is also attempting to deter foreign involvement in Taiwanese affairs by showing Japan and the United States the military costs of intervening in a future Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

The opinions of Chinese nationalists, concerns over Xi Jinping's legacy, and the symbolism of the 95th anniversary of the People's Liberation Army (coincidentally on Aug. 1) likely informed Beijing's decision to respond as strongly as it did with the military drills. Prior to Pelosi's visit, Chinese leaders had communicated through backchannels to the White House that Beijing might impose a no-fly zone to stop Pelosi from entering Taiwanese airspace. This ultimately did not happen, as she arrived safely in Taipei on Aug. 2 after being escorted by U.S. Air Force planes. Thus, the drills are partially aimed at shoring up the Chinese government's legitimacy with nationalist citizens, who criticized their military for failing to prevent Pelosi from visiting the island, by showing that China can still defend its interests in Taiwan. In addition, the drills will help bolster the military bona fides of President Xi Jinping himself before he and other top leaders deliberate on the composition of China's next Politburo (the Chinese Communist Party's top decision-making body) ahead of the 20th Party Congress, which will be held sometime this Fall.

In addition, the drills have tactical benefits for China's wartime readiness by enabling its military to practice ''short of war'' coercion methods, as well as some of the preliminary steps necessary for a future Taiwan invasion (including embargos, coordinated missile strikes, and anti-access and aerial denial campaigns). From a logistical standpoint, China's military is not prepared to invade Taiwan — which would be one of the largest and most complex amphibious landing operations in world history — and simultaneously counter the likely large-scale conflict with the United States that would ensue. Recent U.S. military estimates go so far as to suggest China will not be militarily ready to launch an invasion of Taiwan before 2027. But the current drills do give China's military experience with mass mobilization of forces (as seen in social media videos of Chinese, self-propelled howitzers and missile platforms driving on the highways and beaches of Xiamen), as well as joint operations between the PLA Air Force, Navy, Rocket Forces, and Strategic Support Forces (in charge of logistics, cyber operations and propaganda). These experiences are critical in preparing for a future Taiwan invasion, which would require all of China's military branches to respond with force coordination and resource mobilization on a scale that the People's Republic of China hasn't had to muster since its founding in 1949. Nonetheless, the current drills fall short of a proper dress rehearsal for an invasion, which would also require practicing other, more intricate aspects (like the mass mobilization, training, and equipping of civilian resources) that such an ambitious operation would require.

To occupy Taiwan, China would need to deploy millions of troops, ensure they land safely on Taiwan's shores, and then have those troops establish a beachhead with secure supply lines back to the mainland. The sheer amount of manpower, vehicles and logistical capabilities this would require would be a herculean effort even without U.S. intervention. But with an invasion likely to draw in the United States, China must also ensure its military is armed and ready to fend off the most powerful military in the world.

Despite these tactical benefits, the risks of these drills are great for China, with Taiwanese politics and Western stances toward China looking set to skew further out of Beijing's favor. Though the commercial disruptions from four days of drills will be fairly limited, China's drills will reinvigorate the sense in Western and some Asian governments of how large a threat China is to regional stability, potentially prompting even more U.S. and European policies aimed at decoupling from China. For Taiwanese politics, these drills could also backfire on China by driving the island's less China-friendly ruling party to win more seats in November local elections. More immediately, though, the risk of an accidental collision between Chinese and Taiwanese military vehicles at sea or in the air is worth watching, as it could stoke a political crisis on par with the April 2001 EP-3 spy plane incident, during which a Chinese fighter pilot collided with a much-larger U.S. spy plane while trying to ward off the American aircraft. While unlikely to trigger a broader military conflict, such a collision could further deepen Chinese tensions with Taiwan and the United States and prompt even more economic retaliation or a political crisis, as the EP-3 incident did.

In the lead-up to Taiwan's 1996 presidential election, China tried to use live-fire drills to deter the Taiwanese citizens from voting for Lee Teng-hui. But the drills ended up having the opposite effect by surging support for Lee, helping him to ultimately win the race.

So far, the international response to the drills has largely remained non-escalatory, with minimal military and economic retaliation. In response to the drills, Taiwan has readied its forces across the island. Taipei has also scrambled aircraft and vessels to ward off China's air force and naval assets from passing too far beyond the Taiwan Strait median line. While the Taiwanese government has claimed the military would respond with appropriate measures to any violations of the island's sovereignty, Taipei has so far acted with heavy restraint — using only the minimal force necessary to respond to Chinese provocations. The United States, too, has acted with general calm, sending aircraft carriers to the near seas before and after Pelosi's visit, but not responding directly to any of China's tactical military moves amid the drills. As for businesses, some shipping vessels and South Korean airlines have already diverted or canceled routes, respectively, in the region. The short duration of the drills and the relative ease of altering maritime routes to avoid the areas where they're being conducted (along with the fact that ships can still access Taiwan's ports) will limit disruptions to global supply chains.

Pelosi's visit comes as the United States and China are trying to both maintain military deterrence in the Western Pacific, as well as protect their interests in Taiwan, without escalating into a greater conflict. Nonetheless, while Washington and Beijing suspect military conflict may eventually materialize amid their strategic competition, both have also sought to avoid unnecessary escalation in the region that could trigger a conflict between the world's two largest superpowers with unpredictable consequences.

But Pelosi's visit and China's reaction nonetheless highlight the risk of short-term political decisions overriding long-term strategies aimed at avoiding conflict. The near-term invasion threat remains remote, though China could still expand military drills or economic retaliation measures (e.g. with additional trade restrictions, goods boycotts, etc.) in the coming days. But Pelosi's visit and China's reaction reveal the danger of short-term political agendas overriding long-term strategic goals to manage tensions. For Taiwan, this strategic goal is to secure de facto sovereignty, even if de jure independence is out of reach. This is similar to the U.S. goal of maintaining Taiwanese sovereignty to hold back China's projection of force deeper into the Pacific that would threaten U.S. military dominance. China's ultimate goal, meanwhile, is to reunite with Taiwan in the long-term, ideally peacefully, though with force if necessary. While cost-benefit analysis and long-term management of growing tensions will continue to drive the broad brushstrokes of Chinese, Taiwanese and U.S. policies, these more pragmatic efforts will continue to be punctuated by political exigencies. Such events will threaten economic and military stability in the short term, and in the process, test the commitment of various governments to their security pledges.

Pelosi's visit appeared to be her own choice, not a policy decision by the White House, and went against the concerns of the U.S. military. But because of the optics of not wanting to appear weak, Washington eventually gave its support for her visit once it was formally announced.
A future risk may come from the pro-independence wing of Taiwan's ruling party, which has been known to push for legislation that would formalize Taiwan's sovereignty. Beijing tends to respond strongly to these efforts (for example, with bans on certain Taiwanese exports) despite the desire by both sides to maintain stability and avoid unnecessary provocation.


Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #55 on: August 06, 2022, 10:47:08 AM »
Nancy may have triggered it, but she did not "do this".  American weakness and appeasement did this.


Crafty_Dog

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Stratfor
« Reply #56 on: August 06, 2022, 12:14:00 PM »
second

China's Live-Fire Drills Over Taiwan Presage Embargoes
1 MIN READAug 5, 2022 | 20:13 GMT





A woman in Beijing uses her mobile phone as she walks in front of a large screen showing a news broadcast about China's military exercises encircling Taiwan on Aug. 4.
A woman in Beijing uses her mobile phone as she walks in front of a large screen showing a news broadcast about China's military exercises encircling Taiwan on Aug. 4.

(NOEL CELIS/AFP via Getty Images)

In response to U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan on Aug. 2-3, China announced live-fire drills that began on Aug. 2 and would expand to six areas in the waters around Taiwan from Aug. 4-7. These areas are concentrated around Taiwan's key ports and in regional trade thoroughfares, like the Taiwan Strait and Luzon Strait, and effectively bar maritime and air traffic. They are also closer to Taiwan (with some areas just 10 miles — 16 kilometers — away from the coast) than the last time China launched similar drills in 1995-1996. Their geographic placement is intended to warn Taiwan of the economic pain China could impose if the United States, Japan and Taiwan continue to contravene Beijing's sovereignty claims over Taiwan. In future crises, Beijing could impose an unofficial blockade on Taiwan's ports by expanding the geographic area and/or duration of such live-fire drills, which would not only threaten to crater the Taiwanese economy but also impede some of the world's busiest shipping lanes.






Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #62 on: August 08, 2022, 04:12:50 AM »
So, our pitch to TMSC is to set up shop here so we can abandon Taiwan to China?

We might want to think a bit deeper on this , , ,

DougMacG

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #63 on: August 08, 2022, 07:34:54 AM »
So, our pitch to TMSC is to set up shop here so we can abandon Taiwan to China?

We might want to think a bit deeper on this , , ,

More like, set up shop here or we will.

But maybe, sadly, we don't have the expertise to do that.

I don't understand why high tech automated manufacturing needs to be in lower wage countries.


ya

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #65 on: August 08, 2022, 05:30:00 PM »
Dont know if this is true..US preparing for deployment ?

https://youtu.be/lZ_sGHGUbfs


Crafty_Dog

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China launches new military drills
« Reply #67 on: August 09, 2022, 12:06:20 PM »
second

China Launches New Military Drills, Threatens to Continue Crossing Median Line of Taiwan Strait
By Andrew Thornebrooke August 8, 2022 Updated: August 8, 2022 biggersmaller Print



The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) announced a new round of invasive military drills around Taiwan on Aug. 8, in a further challenge to the island’s sea and air space.

The statement follows just one day after the scheduled end of the CCP’s largest military exercises around the island, ostensibly begun in protest against last week’s visit to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

China’s Eastern Theater Command, which oversees the portion of the mainland closest to Taiwan, said the new drills would focus on anti-submarine and sea assault operations. In an unprecedented escalation, the CCP also stated that it will regularly commence military drills on Taiwan’s side of the Taiwan Strait.

CCP Aggression
The move is likely to be seen as a major provocation by the international community, as the CCP has historically been reticent to cross the median line of the strait. CCP authorities also ceased communications between Chinese and U.S. military leaders within the theater late last week, increasing the possibility of miscommunication.

Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry condemned the move, saying that China is deliberately creating crises. It demanded that CCP leadership stop its hostile military actions and “pull back from the edge” of conflict.

“In the face of military intimidation created by China, Taiwan will not be afraid nor back down, and will more firmly defend its sovereignty, national security, and free and democratic way of life,” the ministry said in a statement.

The comment echoed language used by the White House last week, which accused the CCP of manufacturing crises to justify an increase in military intimidation of Taiwan.

The CCP claims that Taiwan is a rogue province that must be united with mainland China, and hasn’t ruled out the use of force to accomplish that goal. However, Taiwan has been self-governed since 1949 and has never been controlled by the CCP.

CCP leadership has fumed over Pelosi’s trip for nearly a week, going so far as to launch 11 ballistic missiles over Taipei, Taiwan’s capital city, for the first time, some of which fell into the waters of Japan’s exclusive economic zone. Despite the furor, it isn’t unusual for congressional delegations to visit Taiwan.

International forums, including the Group of Seven (G-7) industrial nations and the Association of Southeastern Asian Nations, also condemned the CCP’s aggression in the region and urged the regime to pursue a peaceful outcome to tensions.

“There is no justification to use a visit as [a] pretext for aggressive military activity in the Taiwan Strait,” the G-7 said in a statement. “We call on the PRC [People’s Republic of China] not to unilaterally change the status quo by force in the region, and to resolve cross-Strait differences by peaceful means.”

The duration and precise location of the latest drills aren’t yet known. Taiwan has already eased some flight restrictions near the six earlier Chinese exercise areas surrounding the island, which interfered with international travel.

Taiwan’s Defense Ministry stated that it detected 39 Chinese military aircraft and 13 naval vessels in and around the Taiwan Strait on Aug. 8. It noted that 21 Chinese aircraft entered Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone, including fighter jets that crossed the median line in the northern part of the Taiwan Strait.

Beyond the firing of 11 ballistic missiles, Chinese warships, fighter jets, and drones maneuvered extensively around the island, drawing responding forces from Taiwan’s military.

Shortly before the first set of exercises ended on Aug. 7, about 10 warships each from China and Taiwan maneuvered around one another in close quarters near the median line of the Taiwan Strait.

Taiwan’s Defense Ministry stated that the CCP’s newly designated no-fly zones encircling the island had “compressed” Taiwan’s training space and would affect the normal operation of international flights and air routes for the foreseeable future.


Andrew Thornebrooke is a reporter for The Epoch Times covering China-related issues with a focus on defense, military affairs, and national security. He holds a master's in military history from Norwich University.

G M

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Re: China launches new military drills
« Reply #68 on: August 09, 2022, 12:09:29 PM »
Ships, aircraft and live fire are just one mistake away from war.

second

China Launches New Military Drills, Threatens to Continue Crossing Median Line of Taiwan Strait
By Andrew Thornebrooke August 8, 2022 Updated: August 8, 2022 biggersmaller Print



The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) announced a new round of invasive military drills around Taiwan on Aug. 8, in a further challenge to the island’s sea and air space.

The statement follows just one day after the scheduled end of the CCP’s largest military exercises around the island, ostensibly begun in protest against last week’s visit to Taiwan by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

China’s Eastern Theater Command, which oversees the portion of the mainland closest to Taiwan, said the new drills would focus on anti-submarine and sea assault operations. In an unprecedented escalation, the CCP also stated that it will regularly commence military drills on Taiwan’s side of the Taiwan Strait.

CCP Aggression
The move is likely to be seen as a major provocation by the international community, as the CCP has historically been reticent to cross the median line of the strait. CCP authorities also ceased communications between Chinese and U.S. military leaders within the theater late last week, increasing the possibility of miscommunication.

Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry condemned the move, saying that China is deliberately creating crises. It demanded that CCP leadership stop its hostile military actions and “pull back from the edge” of conflict.

“In the face of military intimidation created by China, Taiwan will not be afraid nor back down, and will more firmly defend its sovereignty, national security, and free and democratic way of life,” the ministry said in a statement.

The comment echoed language used by the White House last week, which accused the CCP of manufacturing crises to justify an increase in military intimidation of Taiwan.

The CCP claims that Taiwan is a rogue province that must be united with mainland China, and hasn’t ruled out the use of force to accomplish that goal. However, Taiwan has been self-governed since 1949 and has never been controlled by the CCP.

CCP leadership has fumed over Pelosi’s trip for nearly a week, going so far as to launch 11 ballistic missiles over Taipei, Taiwan’s capital city, for the first time, some of which fell into the waters of Japan’s exclusive economic zone. Despite the furor, it isn’t unusual for congressional delegations to visit Taiwan.

International forums, including the Group of Seven (G-7) industrial nations and the Association of Southeastern Asian Nations, also condemned the CCP’s aggression in the region and urged the regime to pursue a peaceful outcome to tensions.

“There is no justification to use a visit as [a] pretext for aggressive military activity in the Taiwan Strait,” the G-7 said in a statement. “We call on the PRC [People’s Republic of China] not to unilaterally change the status quo by force in the region, and to resolve cross-Strait differences by peaceful means.”

The duration and precise location of the latest drills aren’t yet known. Taiwan has already eased some flight restrictions near the six earlier Chinese exercise areas surrounding the island, which interfered with international travel.

Taiwan’s Defense Ministry stated that it detected 39 Chinese military aircraft and 13 naval vessels in and around the Taiwan Strait on Aug. 8. It noted that 21 Chinese aircraft entered Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone, including fighter jets that crossed the median line in the northern part of the Taiwan Strait.

Beyond the firing of 11 ballistic missiles, Chinese warships, fighter jets, and drones maneuvered extensively around the island, drawing responding forces from Taiwan’s military.

Shortly before the first set of exercises ended on Aug. 7, about 10 warships each from China and Taiwan maneuvered around one another in close quarters near the median line of the Taiwan Strait.

Taiwan’s Defense Ministry stated that the CCP’s newly designated no-fly zones encircling the island had “compressed” Taiwan’s training space and would affect the normal operation of international flights and air routes for the foreseeable future.


Andrew Thornebrooke is a reporter for The Epoch Times covering China-related issues with a focus on defense, military affairs, and national security. He holds a master's in military history from Norwich University.

Crafty_Dog

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George Friedman: The Fallout over Taiwan
« Reply #69 on: August 09, 2022, 05:06:34 PM »
August 9, 2022
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The Fallout Over Taiwan
By: George Friedman
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s recent visit to Taiwan predictably sparked outrage in China, which responded by flexing its muscles through some not-at-all subtle military exercises. The two important questions here are why did Pelosi go to the island in the first place, and why does Beijing care enough to deploy its fleet?

The Pelosi aspect is far more interesting but much less important. We don’t know exactly why she visited Taiwan. Some claim she went because of her long-standing opposition to Chinese human rights violations, rooted in an increasingly Chinese electoral base in her district. Others claim that she felt there was nothing to lose if the Republicans take back the House in November. Some accounts say she went in defiance of the Biden administration, while others say she was an agent of the administration. One argument goes that the administration thought that a provocative visit by someone not technically in the administration, and therefore deniable, would move the Chinese in U.S.-Chinese negotiations, by showing that the U.S. was prepared to be assertive.

Whatever the case, her visit triggered a very loud but fairly insignificant response from China. A great many ships and planes fired a great deal of ordnance, none of which struck Taiwan or a hostile vessel. The response demonstrated that China does, in fact, have a navy, but it did not show how the balance of power might change if Beijing, for example, shot down an incoming missile while forcing a U.S. submarine to surface.

Beijing has issued repeated warnings on Taiwan, but over time such warnings lose their meaning. So they capitalized on Pelosi’s visit to increase the volume of the warning dramatically. The size of the force displayed and the expressions of China’s rage gave a sense of apocalypse, generating the specter of Chinese power and denoting Beijing’s intentions that such U.S. provocations may elicit. It also created a sense among Americans, reasonable or not, that China is a force that might not be contained. For Beijing, the stakes were low. If it failed to deliver any of these messages, little was lost.

More important is that China canceled several of the channels that were connecting China to the U.S., causing Washington to complain about their closure and thus making the administration appear to need them. This is no minor feat. Exports are the backbone of the Chinese economy. For all the tension between the United States and China, the United States purchases over 17 percent of Chinese exports, making it the largest purchaser of Chinese goods. China is going through a significant economic crisis, one that is accompanied by increasingly aggressive actions against officials who don’t toe the line, and it is enduring increasingly difficult efforts to find other customers. President Xi Jinping is facing questions about his stewardship, the future of which may be revealed at the all-important Party Congress in November.

Xi simply cannot risk a significant break with the United States right now. He has no lever with which to punish the United States economically. The United States, on the other hand, has at least two: cutting imports from China, and threatening its many dollar-denominated dealings. China is aware that the first line of any battle plan is the use of economic sanctions, and now would be a particularly bad time for them. It’s the last thing Xi needs before the November meeting.

Of course, it’s true that a war over Taiwan could distract the Chinese population from their economic woes. The Chinese are patriotic, and thus may be well prepared to accept war’s hardships. And it’s certainly possible they see Xi’s military drills as a sign of strength. The problem is there’s no guarantee China would win. China could invade Taiwan, face an American response, and win the first battle but lose the war. So far, the performance off Taiwan's shores has been measured and rehearsed, carefully calibrated not to trigger an American economic response. The U.S. has even canceled a planned missile test so as not to further anger China.

Pelosi has made her gesture, or the administration asked her to do it. China has made its counter gesture. But China going to war with the U.S. over Taiwan risks serious economic disruption and possible defeat, all to take an island that is a minor step for breaking out of the South China Sea. It could happen, but it does not seem that China’s appetite for danger is high. Nor is America’s.

G M

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Re: George Friedman: The Fallout over Taiwan
« Reply #70 on: August 09, 2022, 05:16:10 PM »
Stratfail.

If nations/their leaders were perfectly logical and rational, human history would have much fewer wars. If I recall correctly, Germany and the UK were the closest trading partners right before WWII.


August 9, 2022
View On Website
Open as PDF

    
The Fallout Over Taiwan
By: George Friedman
U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s recent visit to Taiwan predictably sparked outrage in China, which responded by flexing its muscles through some not-at-all subtle military exercises. The two important questions here are why did Pelosi go to the island in the first place, and why does Beijing care enough to deploy its fleet?

The Pelosi aspect is far more interesting but much less important. We don’t know exactly why she visited Taiwan. Some claim she went because of her long-standing opposition to Chinese human rights violations, rooted in an increasingly Chinese electoral base in her district. Others claim that she felt there was nothing to lose if the Republicans take back the House in November. Some accounts say she went in defiance of the Biden administration, while others say she was an agent of the administration. One argument goes that the administration thought that a provocative visit by someone not technically in the administration, and therefore deniable, would move the Chinese in U.S.-Chinese negotiations, by showing that the U.S. was prepared to be assertive.

Whatever the case, her visit triggered a very loud but fairly insignificant response from China. A great many ships and planes fired a great deal of ordnance, none of which struck Taiwan or a hostile vessel. The response demonstrated that China does, in fact, have a navy, but it did not show how the balance of power might change if Beijing, for example, shot down an incoming missile while forcing a U.S. submarine to surface.

Beijing has issued repeated warnings on Taiwan, but over time such warnings lose their meaning. So they capitalized on Pelosi’s visit to increase the volume of the warning dramatically. The size of the force displayed and the expressions of China’s rage gave a sense of apocalypse, generating the specter of Chinese power and denoting Beijing’s intentions that such U.S. provocations may elicit. It also created a sense among Americans, reasonable or not, that China is a force that might not be contained. For Beijing, the stakes were low. If it failed to deliver any of these messages, little was lost.

More important is that China canceled several of the channels that were connecting China to the U.S., causing Washington to complain about their closure and thus making the administration appear to need them. This is no minor feat. Exports are the backbone of the Chinese economy. For all the tension between the United States and China, the United States purchases over 17 percent of Chinese exports, making it the largest purchaser of Chinese goods. China is going through a significant economic crisis, one that is accompanied by increasingly aggressive actions against officials who don’t toe the line, and it is enduring increasingly difficult efforts to find other customers. President Xi Jinping is facing questions about his stewardship, the future of which may be revealed at the all-important Party Congress in November.

Xi simply cannot risk a significant break with the United States right now. He has no lever with which to punish the United States economically. The United States, on the other hand, has at least two: cutting imports from China, and threatening its many dollar-denominated dealings. China is aware that the first line of any battle plan is the use of economic sanctions, and now would be a particularly bad time for them. It’s the last thing Xi needs before the November meeting.

Of course, it’s true that a war over Taiwan could distract the Chinese population from their economic woes. The Chinese are patriotic, and thus may be well prepared to accept war’s hardships. And it’s certainly possible they see Xi’s military drills as a sign of strength. The problem is there’s no guarantee China would win. China could invade Taiwan, face an American response, and win the first battle but lose the war. So far, the performance off Taiwan's shores has been measured and rehearsed, carefully calibrated not to trigger an American economic response. The U.S. has even canceled a planned missile test so as not to further anger China.

Pelosi has made her gesture, or the administration asked her to do it. China has made its counter gesture. But China going to war with the U.S. over Taiwan risks serious economic disruption and possible defeat, all to take an island that is a minor step for breaking out of the South China Sea. It could happen, but it does not seem that China’s appetite for danger is high. Nor is America’s.

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #71 on: August 09, 2022, 07:09:22 PM »
As I often note, I have high regard for GF.

Though he makes good points, I found this piece distinctly too sanguine.

I posted it anyway, because he is always worth considering.

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China renews war games in response to US congressional visit
« Reply #74 on: August 16, 2022, 06:19:15 AM »


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CHINA

China renews war games around Taiwan after visit

U.S. congressional delegation trip to Taipei angers Beijing

BY BILL GERTZ THE WASHINGTON TIMES

China’s military is continuing provocative military exercises that U.S. officials say are intended to coerce and intimidate Taiwan, a key regional ally.

Spokesmen for the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) were quoted in Chinese state media as saying continued military exercises around Taiwan are meant to signal that Beijing will “crush” any attempts at Taiwan independence or foreign intervention.

PLA Senior Col. Shi Yi, spokesperson for China’s Eastern Theater Command, said the multiunit joint combat readiness exercises and drills began Monday. The renewed exercises come after days of war games that followed the recent visit to Taiwan by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

The latest action appeared to be a response to another congressional delegation that visited to Taiwan on Sunday, led by Rep. Edward J. Markey, Massachusetts Democrat.

Chinese Defense Ministry spokesman Wu Qian said the latest congressional visit violated the “One China” principle and infringes on sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Military officials in Taiwan, formally called the Republic of China (ROC), reported detecting five PLA naval vessels and 30 PLA aircraft on Monday. A total of 15 aircraft were detected flying east of the median line dividing the 100-mile Taiwan Strait between China and Taiwan.

“We condemn PLA for jeopardizing the peace and security of our surrounding region with announcements of military drills,” Taiwan’s Defense Minister tweeted.

“#ROCArmedForces monitor activities around our surrounding region and respond to every situation with professionalism to #ProtectOurCountry,” the post stated.

China’s continued war games come as an American aircraft carrier strike group led by the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan is conducting operations in the nearby Philippine Sea.

The carrier strike group is expected to transit the Taiwan Strait in the coming days in a U.S. show of support for Taiwan.

On Friday, Kurt Campbell, the senior White House policy official on China, said Beijing exploited the Pelosi visit to “launch an intensified pressure campaign against Taiwan and to try to change the status quo, jeopardizing peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and in the broader region.”

“China has overreacted, and its actions continue to be provocative, destabilizing, and unprecedented,” Mr. Campbell said.

Chinese military activities in recent days have included firing at least 11 missiles into waters around Taiwan and declaring exclusion zones around Taiwan that have disrupted civilian, air and maritime traffic.

PLA aircraft crossings of the median line have also disrupted the status quo between the two sides of the strait.

Mr. Campbell told reporters that President Biden ordered the USS Ronald Reagan to remain in the region during the provocative Chinese activities, Mr. Campbell told reporters.

“China’s actions are fundamentally at odds with the goal of peace and stability,” Mr. Campbell said. “They are part of an intensified pressure campaign against Taiwan, which has not ended, and we expect it to continue to unfold in the coming weeks and months. The goal of this campaign is clear: to intimidate and coerce Taiwan and undermine its resilience.”

Former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told The Washington Times in an interview over the weekend that China is among several nations that sense weakness from the Biden administration. “Deterrence depends on both capabilities and intention, and the administration has not shown the intention to protect the things that matter,” said Mr. Pompeo, who added that China is increasingly aggressive in advancing its interests regarding Taiwan.


Taiwan’s President Tsai Ing-wen met with U.S. Congress members in Taipei, Taiwan, on Monday. The delegation visited parliament Monday in a further sign of support for the self-governing island. TAIWAN PRESIDENTIAL OFFICE VIA ASSOCIATED PRESS


China announced more military drills around Taiwan as the selfgoverning island’s president met with members of a delegation



Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #77 on: August 21, 2022, 08:47:00 AM »
Well, in our system of government, the President is not in charge of the Congress, yes?


DougMacG

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #79 on: August 22, 2022, 04:45:47 AM »
Well, in our system of government, the President is not in charge of the Congress, yes?

Yes,  but...

She is second in the line of succession to be President, an executive branch role. A totalitarian dictator may not fully appreciate our separation of powers.

She is of the same party as the President and he is considered the head of the party,  (Party requires loyalty where Xi comes from.)
She is "in charge" of getting his legislation passed,  And he has no control over her.   

He is supposed to be "leader of the free world". Instead is not even in control of his own party.

Or they see him as duplicitous, said he would get this visit stopped and didn't.

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #80 on: August 22, 2022, 07:27:06 AM »
Well, in our system of government, the President is not in charge of the Congress, yes?

Yes,  but...

She is second in the line of succession to be President, an executive branch role. A totalitarian dictator may not fully appreciate our separation of powers.

She is of the same party as the President and he is considered the head of the party,  (Party requires loyalty where Xi comes from.)
She is "in charge" of getting his legislation passed,  And he has no control over her.   

He is supposed to be "leader of the free world". Instead is not even in control of his own party.

Or they see him as duplicitous, said he would get this visit stopped and didn't.

It was a USAF aircraft. Biden could have denied her the plane. Trump would have.

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #81 on: August 22, 2022, 10:01:12 AM »
Or maybe Trump would have told Xi to go get fuct.


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13.9% military increase
« Reply #83 on: August 25, 2022, 07:03:19 PM »
The self-ruled island is planning to increase its military spending by nearly 14 percent.
By: Geopolitical Futures
Taiwanese defense. Taiwan proposed increasing its defense spending next year by 13.9 percent compared to this year. This would bring Taiwan’s total defense budget to $19 billion, including an additional $3.6 billion for fighter jets and other equipment. The proposal comes as tensions rise between Taiwan and China.


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WSJ
« Reply #85 on: August 30, 2022, 07:31:24 PM »
Taiwan Starts Two-Day Defensive Drills as Tensions With China Remain High
The ‘Heaven’s Thunder’ maneuvers, planned months in advance, come as Beijing continues exercises around the self-governed island
By Joyu WangFollow
 in Taipei and Karen HaoFollow
 in Hong Kong
Updated Aug. 9, 2022 4:45 pm ET



Taiwan’s military fired dozens of shells off its southern coast on Tuesday in a simulation of a defense of the island, as Taiwan followed up nearly a week of Chinese military drills with preplanned defensive maneuvers of its own.

Taiwan kicked off its two-day military exercise—known as Tianlei, which can be loosely translated as “Heaven’s Thunder”—with an hour-long live-firing drill involving more than 700 troops, according to Taiwan’s Eighth Army Corps, with 38 howitzers firing 114 shells into the waters.


The annual drills, while planned months in advance, come amid tensions across the Taiwan Strait that are their highest in decades. China’s Communist Party, which claims Taiwan as part of its territory, was angered by a visit to the island last week by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the highest-ranking visit by a U.S. official in a quarter-century.

In response, China’s military, the People’s Liberation Army, said that it would stage four days of military exercises around Taiwan’s main island, which Taiwanese and Chinese defense ministries said showed China seeking to establish an air and sea blockade and simulating an attack on the island.


On Monday, Beijing said it was indefinitely extending its Taiwan drills, which have disrupted one of the busiest shipping and air trade routes in the region. The PLA’s Eastern Theater Command, which oversees operations closest to Taiwan, said Monday’s drills focused on joint anti-submarine and sea assault operations around the island, while Tuesday’s joint air and sea exercises were focused on containment and support.

“Drills like these will not stop and are expected to become routine until reunification, as the Chinese mainland shows its determination to push forward the reunification process,” read an article published Monday in the Global Times, a state-run tabloid, citing unnamed experts.

“The drills not only lock the island from inside out, but also from the outside in, telling external forces that the PLA has powerful area denial capabilities in the region that even the U.S. cannot rival,” the article continued.

Taiwan’s military fired dozens of shells off its southern coast on Tuesday in a simulation of a defense of the island.

Aug. 4-7: Areas with Chinese military

exercises and training activities

Detail

Taipei

CHINA

TAIWAN

Aug. 9-10: Approximate location

of Taiwan’s annual drills

150 miles

150 km

Sources: Xinhua News (areas of China’s military exercises); Taiwan’s Military News Agency (Taiwan’s drill location)
Emma Brown, Yuriko Schumacher/THE WALL STREET JOURNAL
In a news release Tuesday, Taiwan’s defense ministry said China extending its drills beyond the original four-day duration showed that the threat of force hadn’t diminished.

Meanwhile, Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu described China’s extension of its four-day exercises as a sign that Beijing couldn’t be trusted.

“Its ambitions and impact is extending far beyond Taiwan,” Mr. Wu told reporters in Taipei on Tuesday, pointing to Beijing’s growing influence in the South Pacific and throughout and beyond Asia. He described Mrs. Pelosi’s visit as merely an excuse for China’s actions around Taiwan.

“If you look at the preparation of its military exercises, including missiles, large-scale naval and air joint military exercises, drones, cyberattacks, disinformation campaigns, economic coercion, all of these combined—this isn’t something you can prepare in a matter of days,” he said. “China has been preparing for this for a long time.”

Alessio Patalano, a professor of war and strategy in East Asia at King’s College London, said announcing an extension to the exercises appeared to be part of Beijing’s psychological warfare strategy.

The PLA’s annual summer exercises have traditionally lasted two to three weeks, and the Taiwan drills, which serve as those exercises this year, should be no different, Mr. Patalano said. By framing what the PLA had already planned to do as “an extension,” he said, Beijing was able to accomplish three goals: “Scare the Taiwanese, put the Americans in their place, and advance their point of view in changing the status quo, preventing any others from doing anything about it.”

A day earlier in Beijing, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin played down the extension of the military exercises. “China’s position is justified, reasonable and lawful; our measures are firm, strong and measured; and China’s military exercises are open, transparent and professional,” he said.

Before Mrs. Pelosi’s trip, Chinese leader Xi Jinping had warned President Biden during a phone call of unspecified countermeasures should her visit proceed. Mrs. Pelosi had also been warned in briefings with senior White House and Pentagon officials about the lasting damage her trip could cause to U.S.-China relations, though she was never asked to scotch the trip entirely, according to a U.S. official with knowledge of the discussions.


Chinese state media videos and a map of live-fire exercises around Taiwan have displayed Beijing’s strategy to impose an aerial and maritime blockade on the island. Here’s how China could threaten both Taiwan and global trade in case of a military conflict. Illustration: CCTV
In television interviews Tuesday, Mrs. Pelosi said the trip was worth taking and that Mr. Xi was acting out because of his own insecurities.

“He has problems with his economy. He is acting like a scared bully,” she said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”


On Tuesday, 45 Chinese warplanes and 10 warships were involved in a joint operation near Taiwan, Taiwan’s defense ministry said in a release, adding that 16 of the aircraft crossed the so-called median line that bisects the Taiwan Strait, a notional boundary that Taipei says demarcates areas of de facto control but which Beijing says it doesn’t recognize.

“The median line has a psychological meaning,” said Shu Hsiao-huang, a Taipei-based associate research fellow at the military-backed Institute for National Defense and Security Research.

“If [Chinese planes] enter our airspace and we don’t prepare a response,” Mr. Shu said, “it’s like throwing a frog into boiling water.”

Crafty_Dog

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WT: Biden plans to request $1l1B in arms for Taiwan
« Reply #86 on: August 31, 2022, 03:02:07 AM »
We'll see what comes of this , , ,
========
TAIWAN

Biden plans to request $1.1 billion arms sale to Taiwan

BY JOSEPH CLARK THE WASHINGTON TIMES

President Biden is planning to ask Congress to approve a $1.1 billion arms sale to Taiwan, according to reports, as tensions between the U.S. and China surge in the wake of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taipei earlier this month.

Details of the proposed sale come in the wake of transit by U.S. warships through the Taiwan Strait on Sunday. It was the first such move since Beijing commenced a series of highly provocative military exercises in the waters surrounding Taiwan in response to Mrs. Pelosi’s brief visit to the self-governing island 100 miles off of China’s mainland.

The expected package, which includes 60 anti-ship missiles totaling $355 million, 100 air-to-air missiles totaling $85.6 million and a $655.4 million contract extension for surveillance radar, was first reported by Politico, which cited sources with direct knowledge of the proposal.

The White House has yet to publicly confirm the proposed deal.

A National Security Council spokesperson said they had “nothing to preview at this time,” but added, “we will continue fulfilling our commitments under the Taiwan Relations Act to support Taiwan’s self-defense.”

Taiwan’s status is likely to be a hot topic of discussion at the much-anticipated next Chinese Communist Party National Congress, which officials in Beijing revealed Tuesday will open Oct. 16 in the Chinese capital. The gathering, held every five years, is expected to anoint Chinese President Xi Jinping to an unprecedented third five-year term as head of both the party and the government.

Also to be closely watched will be the composition of the party’s all-powerful seven-member Politburo Standing Committee, and whether Mr. Xi will be able to install more of his allies in key positions.

Mr. Xi’s two predecessors had both served two five-year terms, the Associated Press reported, but the current president has shown no sign of relinquishing power, while taking control over the economy and other fields previously assigned to the premier and others. Analysts have said Mr. Xi is under particular pressure from nationalist elements in the ruling party to be seen as taking a tough line on Taiwan in the weeks before the congress convenes.

Mr. Xi has vowed to claim Taiwan as a part of sovereign Chinese territory, either peacefully or by force, and Chinese officials say the U.S. side is breaking the long status quo with moves that Beijing says violate the longstanding “one China” policy.

The proposed arms sale sparked further outrage in Beijing. The Chinese Communist Party-backed Global Times on Tuesday called the move “yet another ill-intended provocation that will only escalate tensions in the region.”

The arms deal would require approval by the Senate Foreign Relations and House Foreign Affairs Committees. Lawmakers from both committees are likely to sign off on the deal.

Sen. Robert Menendez, New Jersey Democrat and chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, recently co-sponsored legislation with Sen. Lindsey Graham, South Carolina Republican, that would significantly increase U.S.-Taiwan security cooperation.

Beijing claims Taiwan as part of China. The government in Taipei, which formally calls itself the Republic of China, is denounced as an illegitimate renegade.

China’s military maneuvers signal a rise in tensions that could cast a shadow over Beijing’s relations with the West for the foreseeable future, and sparked fears that the Chinese military could move to seize Taiwan by force in the foreseeable future.

DougMacG

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Re: WT: Biden plans to request $1l1B in arms for Taiwan
« Reply #87 on: August 31, 2022, 08:00:22 AM »
"President Biden is planning to ask Congress to approve a $1.1 billion arms sale to Taiwan. ...
The expected package, which includes 60 anti-ship missiles totaling $355 million, 100 air-to-air missiles totaling $85.6 million and a $655.4 million contract extension for surveillance radar, was first reported by Politico, which cited sources with direct knowledge of the proposal."
-----------

I enjoy praising them in those rare moments when they get something right - and this is one example.

"bipartisan foreign policy" means a mutual effort, under our indispensable two-party system, to unite our official voice at the water's edge so that America speaks with maximum authority against those who would divide and conquer us and the free world
'Politics Ends at the Water's Edge'
Sen. Vandenberg, 1947
http://www.bartleby.com/73/634.html


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FA: DOD is dicking around and time is running out to defend Taiwan
« Reply #89 on: September 15, 2022, 07:20:53 AM »


Time Is Running Out to Defend Taiwan
Why the Pentagon Must Focus on Near-Term Deterrence
By Michèle Flournoy and Michael Brown
September 14, 2022


https://www.foreignaffairs.com/china/time-running-out-defend-taiwan

Chinese President Xi Jinping has made it abundantly clear that “reunifying” Taiwan with mainland China is a legacy issue for him, something he intends to accomplish on his watch through political and economic means or, if necessary, through military force. Right now, he is preoccupied with the COVID-19 crisis, the slowing growth of the Chinese economy, and the upcoming 20th Party Congress, where he hopes to secure a third term as chair of the Chinese Communist Party. But once these immediate concerns are addressed, it is possible that sometime in the next five years Xi will consider taking Taiwan by force, either because nonmilitary efforts at reunification have fallen short or because he believes his chances of success will diminish if he waits and U.S. military capabilities grow.

The long-standing U.S. policy of “strategic ambiguity” deliberately leaves uncertain whether and under what circumstances the United States would defend Taiwan against a Chinese invasion. But it is clearly in the United States’ interest to deter China from attempting such an operation in the first place. As the scholar Hal Brands noted in a July report for the American Enterprise Institute, a Chinese assault on Taiwan that draws a U.S. military response is likely to ignite a long conflict that escalates beyond Taiwan. Like great powers that have gone to war in the past, the United States and China would grow more committed to winning as a conflict progressed, each making the case to its public that it has too much to lose to stop fighting. Given that China and the United States both have substantial nuclear arsenals, preemptively deterring a conflict must be the name of the game. To do so, the United States must help Taiwan modernize and enhance its self-defense capabilities while also strengthening its own ability to deter China from using force against the island.

The good news is that the Biden administration’s new National Defense Strategy, transmitted to Congress in March and due to be released in unclassified form in the coming months, reflects the need to move with greater speed and agility to strengthen deterrence in both the near and long term. The strategy reinforces the focus on a more aggressive China as the United States’ primary threat and emphasizes a new framework of “integrated deterrence,” drawing on all instruments of national power as well as the contributions of U.S. allies and partners to deter future conflicts that are likely to be fought across multiple regions and domains. It also identifies a number of technologies that will be critical for maintaining the U.S. military’s edge—including artificial intelligence, autonomy, space capabilities, and hypersonics—and calls for more experimentation to prepare for future warfighting. And it rightly aspires to bolster the United States’ military position in the Indo-Pacific and substantially deepen its relationships with important allies and partners.


But a critical piece of the deterrence puzzle is still missing: a focused Department of Defense-wide effort to dramatically accelerate and scale the fielding of new capabilities needed to deter China over the next five years. The Pentagon is developing both offensive and defensive capabilities that will take decades to design, build, and deploy. But emerging dual-use technologies are changing the character of warfare much faster than that. This is already evident in Ukraine, where commercial satellite imagery, autonomous drones, cellular communications, and social media have shaped battlefield outcomes. For example, satellite imagery created with synthetic aperture radar, which can see through clouds and at night, has provided a nearly real-time view of Russian movements, enabling Ukraine and NATO countries to counter Kremlin misinformation and sometimes giving Ukrainian forces a tactical advantage. Using this satellite imagery, drones have been able to collect valuable intelligence and serve as effective antitank weapons. Geolocation data has enabled the Ukrainian military to target Russian generals who carelessly used their cell phones. Cell phones have also enabled Ukrainians to document atrocities, while social media has bolstered the Ukrainian resistance and international support for its cause. Many technologies that were previously available only to governments are now readily available to individuals, including in countries that are hostile to the United States. To harness the power of these new technologies, the U.S. military must adopt new capabilities much more swiftly than it has in the past.

China—which leads the world in the manufacture of small drones and advanced telecommunications—already exhibits this sense of urgency. It compels its private companies to work closely with the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) to accelerate the development and adoption of new technologies and concepts. For decades, China has carefully studied U.S. capabilities, even stealing the designs for many major U.S. weapons systems. Now, it is rapidly modernizing the PLA, exploiting asymmetries between U.S. capabilities and its own in order to diminish Washington’s military advantage. It also makes use of innovations from its commercial sector. For example, the PLA uses commercially derived artificial intelligence technologies to power drone swarms and underwater autonomous vehicles. It also draws on leading private companies for electronic warfare tools, virtual reality technologies for training, and sophisticated intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities.

Although the Pentagon leadership deserves credit for strengthening U.S. strategy and enhancing U.S. force posture and activities in the Indo-Pacific region, the bottom line is that the U.S. military is simply not moving fast enough to ensure that it can deter China in the near term. If Washington wants to deny Beijing the ability to blockade or overrun Taiwan in the next five years, it must step up the pace and scale of change and adopt a new approach: relentless leadership and focus at the top of the Department of Defense to make deterring China a daily priority, immediate investments in rapidly fielding promising prototypes at scale, greater integration of commercial dual-use technologies, and an emergency effort to solve the most critical operational problems the United States would face in deterring and defeating a Chinese assault on Taiwan. Such a crash effort is not without precedent. Consider the Pentagon’s urgent endeavors to increase unmanned intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance capabilities to counter terrorism after 9/11 and the rapid fielding of mine-resistant vehicles to protect U.S. troops from improvised explosive devices during the war in Iraq.

Planning for a blockade or invasion of Taiwan has long been the highest priority for the PLA, shaping everything from its acquisition priorities to its exercises to its military posture. This possibility has also motivated decades of Chinese investment in “anti-access/area-denial” capabilities designed to prevent U.S. forces from projecting power into the region to defend Taiwan. Many of the PLA’s new capabilities are now coming online at scale, significantly complicating the U.S. military’s operational challenges. Yet many of the U.S. military’s most promising capabilities to counter China in the event of a conflict over Taiwan will not be ready and fully integrated into the force until the 2030s. This creates a window of vulnerability for Taiwan, most likely between 2024 and 2027, in which Xi may conclude he has the best chance of military success should his preferred methods of political coercion and economic envelopment of Taiwan fail. Indeed, thanks to the PLA’s substantial investments, the U.S. military has reportedly failed to stop a Chinese invasion of Taiwan in many war games carried out by the Pentagon.

NEED FOR SPEED

To deter Chinese aggression against Taiwan in the next two to five years, the United States must immediately reorient U.S. forces in the Indo-Pacific. Acquisition processes that worked well for the United States during the Cold War are ponderous and leave the Pentagon ill-equipped to compete in a period of profound technological disruption against a faster-moving, more capable adversary than the Soviet Union. Coming from diverse backgrounds in the executive branch and private sector, we are united in our view of what needs to be done to provide the best deterrence against China and, if necessary, the best defense of Taiwan.

First, the Pentagon’s leadership must urgently address the gap between what the United States has and what it needs to deter China in the near term. With the commanders of the military’s geographic and functional combatant commands focused on current operations and the chiefs of the military services focused on building the capabilities they will need in the 2030s and beyond, the Department of Defense has no accountable senior leader solely focused on improving the United States’ ability to deter Chinese aggression in the 2024­–27 timeframe. Accordingly, the U.S. secretary of defense should create a senior civilian or general officer position that reports directly to him and has the singular mission of driving the changes necessary to achieve this objective. This official would need to have prior Pentagon experience, deep understanding of U.S. military operations, comfort with new technology, a reputation for driving change, and the resources and backing to create an empowered, effective, and collaborative team.

Job number one would be to lead an intensive, department-wide sprint to identify the most consequential problems associated with deterring an attack on Taiwan; determine which currently unfunded priorities should receive more resources (such as addressing critical munitions shortages); canvass the different branches of the military, the units of the Pentagon dedicated to innovation, and defense and commercial firms for solutions; and then work with leaders in Congress to reallocate funds to ensure these capabilities are fielded within the next two to five years. Success would be measured by the new capabilities deployed into the hands of U.S. warfighters and the speed at which this is done—not by the number of experiments and demonstrations that are performed.


The U.S. military’s most promising capabilities to counter China will not be ready until the 2030s.
One initial area of focus could be rapidly fielding large numbers of smaller autonomous systems to augment conventional capabilities at low cost. For example, small autonomous systems for intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance could be deployed to create a vast and much more resilient sensor network that improves U.S. situational awareness across the Indo-Pacific. Similarly, swarms of small, AI-enabled expendable strike systems could be brought online, enabling U.S. forces to confound and overwhelm an adversary in any number of situations. Such off-the-shelf systems can be fielded quickly and cheaply with easy-to-upgrade software.

The United States could also improve its ability to hold Chinese naval forces at risk and thereby deter them from crossing the Taiwan Strait by arming U.S. bombers deployed to the Indo-Pacific with large numbers of long-range antiship missiles, as the Pentagon’s Strategic Capabilities Office has demonstrated. Urgently funding the scaling and deployment of such innovations should be among the Department of Defense’s highest priorities in the next two to five years, yet few have been fully funded in the most recent budget request. Ideally, some of these efforts could be undertaken jointly with the capable militaries of U.S. allies.

The Pentagon should also accelerate and scale up its security assistance to Taiwan, making the island more of an indigestible “porcupine” and improving its ability to slow down and impose costs on any aggressor. In particular, the United States should assist Taiwan with operational planning, war-gaming, and training while also helping Taiwan leverage commercial capabilities to improve its situational awareness and acquire critical asymmetric capabilities such as air and missile defenses, sea mines, armed drones, and antiship missiles. U.S. National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan indicated at the Aspen Security Forum in July that planning for such an effort is already underway, but hardening Taiwan’s defenses in the two- to five-year time frame will require more hands-on, determined leadership to overcome persistent bureaucratic obstacles and delays. The Biden administration’s recent announcement that it will sell both Harpoon and Sidewinder missiles to Taiwan is a promising first step.

To augment current U.S. capabilities, the Department of Defense should adopt a “fast-follower” strategy to accelerate the adoption of commercial technologies that solve key operational problems. Private companies are leading the development of cutting-edge technologies such as AI and autonomous systems, so the Pentagon must be fast to follow these commercial innovators and make itself a more attractive customer by streamlining the acquisition process for commercial technologies. Deterring a Chinese assault on Taiwan, or defending against one, will require rapidly fielding a range of new capabilities from commercial dual-use suppliers. Commercial technologies such as advanced secure communications, AI software, small drones, and synthetic aperture radar satellite imagery can deliver novel capabilities at a fraction of the cost of technologies developed to meet military requirements and specifications—and in one to two years instead of one to two decades. Accelerating the early adoption of commercial technologies such as these will help the Pentagon erode Beijing’s confidence in its ability to take Taiwan by force. 

FOLLOWING FAST
Instituting a fast-follower strategy would require overhauling the Pentagon’s outdated, cumbersome, and painfully slow procurement processes to deal more efficiently with commercial technology vendors. Currently, the department spends years developing detailed specifications for nearly every capability that it procures—whether or not that capability is already available off the shelf. And if a system does not meet a specified military requirement, finding funding to buy it from a commercial vendor can be difficult, even if it clearly meets a priority operational need. Given the urgency and gravity of the challenge posed by China, the Pentagon must innovate to dramatically speed up the procurement process for commercial technologies.

To that end, the Pentagon should designate units that can assess, budget for, and procure specific commercial capabilities such as small drones and counterdrone capabilities that are not designed with a specific branch of the military in mind. Doing so will require training a new cadre of acquisition professionals who specialize in the rapid procurement and integration of commercial technologies. It will also require keeping pace with private-sector innovation so that U.S. warfighters can be outfitted with the latest technology.

These Pentagon procurement units should follow commercial best practices, maximizing competition among vendors while also minimizing the costs for vendors to participate. The Defense Innovation Unit, which works to accelerate the adoption of commercial technology, already exclusively uses these practices, drawing an average of 43 vendors to each of its 26 competitive solicitations last year. Using a special authorization from Congress known as Other Transaction Authority, the Department of Defense can also eliminate requirements for vendors to recompete for contracts once they have successfully competed with a prototype; these vendors could proceed immediately to follow-on production contracts to scale the new capability.

Finally, the Pentagon should deepen its collaboration with U.S. allies in procuring critical capabilities, sourcing commercial technology from these countries, and selling proven technologies to their militaries. Prevailing in its competition with China will require the United States to innovate beyond its borders and collaborate with allies to field joint capabilities. The easiest, fastest way to do this is with commercial technologies that are unclassified and therefore easily shareable, as the war in Ukraine has demonstrated.

NOW OR NEVER
Many analysts will say that the Department of Defense is already modernizing the U.S. force and investing in technology and innovation to compete with China. And it is true that the Pentagon is moving in the right direction. But it must make bigger changes—and faster. Most of the department’s investments in research and development will not yield fielded capabilities in the two- to five-year period that is critical for deterring China.   

To effectively prepare for the approaching window of vulnerability in which Xi may conclude he has the best chance of taking Taiwan by force, the Pentagon must do a better job of balancing its need to invest in long-term capabilities with what it needs today. In so doing, it can create an element of strategic surprise, a stronger deterrent, and a more modern force that combines traditional large weapons platforms with new and transformative capabilities. If the Pentagon fails to adopt a new vision of warfighting, and the PLA succeeds, the United States will find itself with plans and platforms to fight the last war instead of the one it may face next.

Xi has likely learned a dangerous lesson from Russia’s mistakes in Ukraine—namely, that if he wants to take Taiwan by force, he needs to go big and move fast. A potential conflict over the island could therefore unfold much more rapidly than the war in Ukraine, with China attempting to create a fait accompli within days. Therefore, the United States needs to dramatically strengthen deterrence and undermine Beijing’s confidence in its ability to succeed. 

The U.S. Congress has already recognized the need to rapidly improve deterrence by funding the Pacific Deterrence Initiative, which aims to provide the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command with the capabilities it urgently needs. The head of that command, Admiral John Aquilino, has repeatedly stated that he is most interested in additional capabilities that can be fielded in the next few years—not those that can be delivered decades from now.

The stakes could not be higher, and the clock is ticking. The United States is running out of time to deploy the new capabilities and operational concepts it needs to deter China in the near term. The Department of Defense still has time to make the necessary changes—but only if it acts with greater urgency and focus now.

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Senate bill supporting Taiwan
« Reply #90 on: September 16, 2022, 05:42:38 AM »
Support for Taiwan. The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a bill that would bolster U.S. military support for Taiwan. The Taiwan Policy Act would provide around $4.5 billion in weapons and security assistance over the next four years and designate the self-ruled island a “major non-NATO ally.”

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Re: Senate bill supporting Taiwan
« Reply #91 on: September 16, 2022, 07:41:07 AM »
How much of that will be spent on LGBTQPedo training?

Support for Taiwan. The U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee approved a bill that would bolster U.S. military support for Taiwan. The Taiwan Policy Act would provide around $4.5 billion in weapons and security assistance over the next four years and designate the self-ruled island a “major non-NATO ally.”

Crafty_Dog

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Re: Taiwan
« Reply #92 on: September 16, 2022, 09:43:37 AM »
I'm thinking the Taiwanese would tend to blow that off.

Regardless, declaring Taiwan to be a "Major Non-NATO Ally" would be a good thing.

Sending arms, which would require a bipartisan vote, would be a good thing not only for the weapons themselves, but also for FY to the ChiComs.

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Stratfor: What could push China to invade Taiwan
« Reply #94 on: September 21, 2022, 02:22:13 PM »
What Could Push China to Invade Taiwan
9 MIN READSep 20, 2022 | 16:09 GMT



China is unlikely to invade Taiwan in the next 5-10 years, but several drivers could change Beijing's reasoning and push China toward a more aggressive strategy. Based purely on a strategic cost-benefit analysis of everything from economics and politics to technology considerations and alliance dynamics, it seems likely that Beijing will delay an invasion of Taiwan for years, if not decades. In the meantime, Beijing will attempt to coerce Taiwan into giving up its dreams of sovereignty and to convince the West that conflict over Taiwan is not worth the trouble. If myriad geopolitical drivers push China toward escalation, however, China could wield such coercive tactics as widespread cyber attacks against Taiwan, a de facto blockade of Taiwan's ports (an extended version of the military drills that followed U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit in August), a trade war targeting Taiwan's non-electronic exports, or restricted trade in essential goods with Taiwan's Kinmen or Matsu Islands, which are within miles of the Chinese coast. In the long term, Chinese authorities believe that U.S. power is in decline and that China's is rising, and thus that time is on their side. The following constraints make a Taiwan invasion unlikely in the near term.

Military ascendance: China's military power has risen in recent years following higher expenditures and greater advances in technology, while the U.S. military is geographically overstretched and overburdened with human capital and maintenance costs relative to technological research. However, an invasion over the next few years could result in the West imposing heavy trade and financial sanctions on China that would crater China's economy given the depth of its reliance on Western markets.

Costs of invasion: Moreover, China's military is likely not yet ready for the invasion, given the herculean task of such a large amphibious invasion and the likelihood of U.S., Japanese and Australian military intervention, not to mention the potential for NATO involvement. The devastating loss of great numbers of military assets alone, accrued over decades of military modernization, might be enough to dissuade China from invasion, at least until the late 2020s when China will have better capabilities and thus a better chance of achieving a fait accompli on Taiwan.

Risk of failure: Domestic politics also might dissuade Beijing from conducting an invasion, as the failure to militarily take Taiwan could lead to the downfall of the Chinese Communist Party — or at least of its current leader, President Xi Jinping. In such a case, Xi would be harangued for failing to achieve the so-called reunification of China, one of the great missions of the Party since its founding in 1949.
Technological dependence: China relies on Taiwanese exports of high-end semiconductors, and the destructiveness of an invasion (not to mention Taiwan's own potential plans to scuttle factories rather than hand them over to Beijing) could set China's technological development back decades.
Despite these constraints, a number of long-term strategic drivers may make military action against the island seem like an attractive option to Beijing. A combination of these drivers could push China to accelerate its timeline for a Taiwan invasion much earlier than 2049, which is Xi's current milestone for China achieving national rejuvenation, in part through reunification with Taiwan.

Bad intel: Xi has wielded his anti-corruption campaign to purge political dissent and surround himself with "yes men" over the last 10 years. This means his information flows may be biased heavily toward affirmation, which risks China taking inadvisable policy moves.
Military inexperience: Most Chinese generals have never fought in a war, while a select few fought during China's last major conflict, the Sino-Vietnamese War of 1979, which was prior to China's military modernization. Thus, China's battlefield systems, especially its joint operation systems predicated on nationwide coordination of military theaters, are ill-tested for combat, and its soldiers and generals are unaware of their true capabilities outside of training, drills and observation of other countries' military engagements. As a result, Chinese military leaders may have a poor grasp of their combat capabilities, while nationalism through propaganda may add unbridled optimism to this ignorance.

Xi's self-image: Xi sees himself as a pivotal character in China's history, having enshrined "Xi Jinping Thought" in the Party constitution (alongside "Mao Zedong Thought") and deemed himself the helmsman of China's great rejuvenation into the world's leading superpower. Xi also thoroughly integrated the "Two Establishments" — which situate Xi as the core of the CCP and Xi's ideas as the foundation of China's "new era" — into all state policy. Therefore, his claim that China's national rejuvenation hinges upon reunification with Taiwan may motivate him to attempt to make significant progress on "the Taiwan question" to cement his legacy.

Fear of economic decline: A period of sustained economic decline could lead Beijing to believe that time is no longer on its side vis-a-vis Chinese ascendance and Western decline, and thus that China's ability to retake Taiwan may be at its zenith. This could prompt a "now or never" moment for a Taiwan invasion, particularly given Xi's more aggressive temperament (compared with previous leaders) and concerns about his personal legacy.
Taiwan's rearming: The longer Beijing waits to attack Taiwan, the more arms Taipei will be able to amass through security agreements like the $1.1 billion U.S. arms deal signed on Sept. 6 for missiles and surveillance support. To circumvent this "poison shrimp" strategy, whereby Taiwan makes itself too costly to invade, Beijing may opt for military action on Taiwan sooner rather than later.

Taiwan's politicization: With each generation, the Taiwanese people grow more opposed to living under Chinese rule. Meanwhile, the opposition Kuomintang party in Taiwan, which is traditionally friendly toward Beijing, is losing ground in elections and adjusting poorly to this pro-sovereignty shift in Taiwanese sentiment. Thus, Beijing may be motivated to invade sooner, before the populace becomes even more anti-China and difficult to rule over, akin to the pro-democracy camp in Hong Kong.

Shorter-term tactical events also could motivate China to escalate military action against Taiwan and permanently change the status quo of cross-strait interaction, as evidenced by U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's recent visit to Taipei. Pelosi's Aug. 2-3 visit prompted Beijing to launch live-fire military drills in areas closer to Taiwan's coast than ever before — demonstrating China's ability to enforce a blockade of Taiwan's ports — and conduct regular crossings of the Taiwan Strait median line. Similar events may drive China to escalate its use of economic and military coercion against Taiwan, which could push China further up the escalation ladder toward invasion. Other particularly provocative events, however, could prompt China to forgo coercion entirely in favor of a military invasion on an accelerated timeline.

High-level visits: Like Pelosi's visit, other major world leaders, including heads of parliament or even heads of state, could visit Taiwan for political reasons, despite the cautions of their national security advisors. China could once again use backchannels to communicate the unprecedented moves of military coercion it would take (e.g., the no-fly zone over Taiwan it threatened ahead of the Pelosi visit) to deter or punish these actions.

Congressional bills: Akin to the Taiwan Policy Act currently floating through the U.S. Senate, which would designate Taiwan a major non-NATO ally, other legislatures could pass bills that would upend the uneasy stability across the Taiwan Strait. Taiwan's own pro-independence wing of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) is one major source of such disruptive bills, though the pro-status-quo wing of the DPP usually counters its legislative efforts. Such efforts also could prompt China to up its military coercion of Taiwan (e.g., through live-fire drills).

Chinese nationalism: As Beijing relies more heavily on pro-China propaganda and anti-Western messages to deflect internal criticism over policy failures (e.g., the "zero COVID" policy) and external criticism over human rights issues (e.g., in Xinjiang), zealous Chinese nationalists could force Beijing's hand by waging protests that call on the government to take aggressive action toward Taiwan. This could result in new Chinese trade restrictions or military activities around the island.

Accidental collision: China's increased pace of military overflights of Taiwan's air defense identification zone (ADIZ), as well as flights and naval navigations past the Taiwan Strait median line, regularly prompt Taiwanese military responses. These encounters risk accidental collisions, especially given the recent dare-devil tactics of Chinese fighter pilots, which could spark a political crisis on par with the EP-3 spy plane incident of 2001, especially if loss of life occurs.

China's red lines: Beijing has a number of policy "red lines" that, if crossed, would heighten its threat perception of Taiwan to justify escalated activity, up to and potentially including an invasion. These include a U.S. formal defense agreement with Taiwan, U.S. stationing of troops in Taiwan (akin to bases in Okinawa), Washington abandoning strategic ambiguity in favor of a clear stance on exactly what Chinese actions would prompt U.S. military intervention on behalf of Taiwan, Taiwan declaring constitutional independence, a pro-independence candidate winning the Taiwan presidential election in 2024, an indefinite withdrawal by both of Taiwan's main political parties from any future reunification talks with China, and global recognition of Taiwan as a sovereign country.

Several events could indicate changes in these long- and short-term drivers of a potential invasion and in the status quo of China-Taiwan relations. It will be important to look out for the following events as China-Taiwan tensions continue to develop, as they could trigger Chinese coercive action or, in the worst-case scenario, escalate into a full-fledged invasion.

Protests: China could experience protests with hundreds of participants outside of key U.S. or European embassies or consulates in China's major cities like Beijing, Shanghai or Guangzhou.

Organizational admission: Major international bodies like the World Health Organization could decide to admit Taiwan as a member even though China normally predicates its own membership on the exclusion of Taiwan.

International recognition: The United States and other countries could ditch their own versions of the vague "one China" policy, effectively indicating their recognition of Taiwan as a sovereign country. On a less extreme note, more countries could establish "Taiwan representative offices," as Lithuania did in November 2021, which Beijing likens to recognizing Taiwan's sovereignty.

Arms sales: The United States could escalate its arms sales to Taiwan significantly enough to alter the cross-strait power balance or threaten China's coastal security (e.g., through the sale of hypersonic missiles).

U.S. policy specificity: The Biden administration could go beyond recent statements about a U.S. commitment to defend Taiwan from an "unprecedented attack" by laying out exactly what Chinese activities would trigger U.S. military invention.

Escalating rhetoric: Xi could make additional statements indicating that Taiwan's reunification is necessary for China's national development, and he could associate reunification with other national goals (such as China's goals for technological supremacy in key fields).

Slow economic growth: China's annual gross domestic product growth could stay below 3% for years while youth unemployment remains high at around 20% and real estate sale prices stagnate.

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D1: Taiwan Straits transit
« Reply #95 on: September 21, 2022, 05:59:10 PM »
second

The U.S. and Canadian navies sailed through the Taiwan Strait and the South China Sea together, officials from the U.S. Navy's Japan-based 7th Fleet announced Tuesday and Wednesday, respectively.
Tuesday's Taiwan Strait transit was the U.S. Navy's fourth this calendar year, with previous trips in late February, July, and August.

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GPF: Taiwan upping live fire drills
« Reply #96 on: September 24, 2022, 04:16:51 AM »


More drills. Taiwan plans to increase the frequency of live-fire drills, according to recent reports. Exercises will be held once every month in Penghu county in the Taiwan Strait and once every two months on the islands of Kinmen and Matsu, close to China. Previously, drills took place every three or four months on Penghu. The reports follow massive Chinese military maneuvers held last month.