It is an island. It is a democracy. It is a nation of about 25 million people. A retired military commander says it will “not last two weeks” in a battle against China.
Lt. Gen. Yeh Jin Win, a 32-year-old veteran warrior in the Taiwanese Navy, has told his increasingly tense nation that it is “playing with fire” by modernizing its army. If relations with the Chinese Communist Party deteriorate to the point of war, the island will be inundated in “only two weeks.”
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In the past few weeks, Washington has agreed to sell drones worth $ 600 million and $ 2.37 billion in Harpoon missiles. It is the latest in a string of arms deals signed with Washington since 2017.
One of them, in particular, upset Beijing.
The four large Q-9 SeaGuardian reconnaissance aircraft give Taiwan the capability to conduct long-term armed patrols. But the offshore Harpoon missile has a range of about 250 km. This means it can reach China’s coastal facilities across the Taiwan Strait.
A few weeks ago, CCP hired an editor for Global Times He declared that if the United States continues to rearm and support Taiwan independence, “war will come.”
Against the dragon
The defense agreement between Taiwan and the United States allows the purchase of weapons of a defensive nature.
It has been in place for nearly 50 years. The most notable purchase was the island’s fleet of F-16 Viper fighters.
But Beijing has undergone dramatic modernization and expansion of its military in recent years. Especially among its naval and naval offensive forces.
This worries Taipei.
The wolf warrior’s speech accompanying Beijing lives up to the anxiety. The urgency and nature of recent arms purchases reflect this.
Related: “Preparing for War”: China’s response
In October, Washington also agreed to sell HIMARS mobile missile launchers, SLAM-ER air-to-surface missiles and new sensor capsules for older F-16s.
SeaGuardian UAVs are surveillance aircraft capable of transmitting target data as well as engaging land and sea targets and the submarines themselves.
“The capability is a deterrent to regional threats and will enhance the recipient’s self-defense,” said a statement issued by the US Defense Security Cooperation Agency.
But the Chinese Communist Party criticizes its neighbor for daring to defy its demands. Lieutenant General Yeh speaks on her behalf.
The eleventh five-year plan
The People’s Liberation Army Air Force (PLAAF) this week sent fighter jets to join its increasingly regular investigations into Taiwan’s airspace.
Beijing recently announced that it considers it its own province, so it can do whatever it wants wherever it wants.
On Monday, eight combat aircraft – including two powerful J-11 “Flanker” interceptors, two J-16 multi-role fighters and two older J-10 fighters – were sent to bolster that claim.
The Chinese Communist Party has just completed its Fifth Plenary Session, which is the Assembly of the Central Committee and an opportunity for President Xi to set his agenda.
One point is clearly stated. He stressed the strong alertness for outside interference in Hong Kong and Macao affairs, and pledged to firmly contain those activities in Taiwan to safeguard national sovereignty and stability.
A news service controlled by the Chinese Communist Party Global Times He ominously indicated that Beijing had “learned lessons” from the changes made to the “one country, two systems” principle that governs its relations with Hong Kong and Taiwan.
This idea was abandoned in Hong Kong.
Taiwan appears to be next.
“The (Communist Party) policy package is telling people in Taiwan that smart people will realize that reunification will be the only and better option,” Li Xiaoping, an academic of Taiwan affairs, told the Beijing-based news agency.
“Not cause a problem”
“If Taiwan does not cause trouble, the Chinese Communist Party will tolerate it, but in the end its hand will be forced,” he told the Hong Kong-based newspaper. China Review News service. “Taiwan will only last two weeks,” he said. Do we already have enough forces? We will need to recruit in order to fight a battle. “
The Chinese Communist Party insists Taiwan belongs to it. But republican Taiwan never surrendered during the civil war of 1949. The history of Taiwan’s ownership is itself disputed.
“The purchase of Harpoon missiles threatens aircraft carriers in Beijing and their arrival in the Pacific Ocean,” Lieutenant-General Yeh told the Hong Kong-based News Service. He said that was interpreted as “hostile”.
He asserts that “if Harpoon missiles are able to hit aircraft carriers, then they are offensive in nature and are no longer defensive,” adding that Washington “deliberately” fueled relations between Taipei and Beijing.
The Chinese Foreign Ministry has expressed similar sentiments, warning that the sales “constitute a flagrant interference in China’s internal affairs, seriously undermine China’s sovereignty and security interests, send wrong signals to the separatist forces for” Taiwan independence “, and seriously undermine Sino-US relations as well as peace and stability. Across the Taiwan Strait. “
Jimmy Seidel is a freelance writer Embed a Tweet