Defence of Taiwan

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #41
16. EVEN if it is a clear cut invasion threat, it can take more than 2 weeks for the first shipments of American weapons to trickle-in and a further one to two months before any Japanese help can trickle-in to Taiwan. As far as American and Japanese interests are concerned, any Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) with Taiwan, in the of tension period prior to war would seek to facilitate the following:

(i) Unhindered entry of American and Japanese troops during times of emergency.​

(ii) Exemption of military personnel from visa or passport formalities and local laws.​

(iii) Unrestricted entry of equipment and supplies, without being subject to custom formalities.​

(iv) A framework for the movement of American and Japanese personnel and supplies into Taiwan for exercise.​

(v) Specifies a particular legal code to be applied in case of damage inflicted to the host nation by American and Japanese military personnel during an exercise.​

Knowing Taiwanese pride do you think they can accept a SOFA as envisaged? Where the SOFA would not provide similar facilities to Taiwanese personnel who could be sent to Japan for training and related purposes — their pride will be their downfall.
Taiwan doesn't have the budget to build dozens of new first-class warships, unless it reverts to the old KMT dictatorship era...
17. This is a false choice. Instead of spending on defence a portion Taiwanese funding has been diverted to industry to buy what I consider are the wrong products and weapons are less suitable in meeting their actual operational demands (to futher their island defence plan)— I see their failure to upgrade the M-60 tanks and lack of focus on getting 120mm mortars and 155mm wheeled artillery, being a case in point.

18. The corruption behind the "Lafayette Affair" has dragged on for two decades and has involved at least 8 bizarre deaths, multiple court cases, hundreds of millions in frozen Swiss bank accounts and high-level government probes in both Taiwan and France that have reached deep into the corridors of power. If the Taiwanese political and military leadership are really serious about defence they would not be using arms procurement as an excuse to enrich themselves.

19. I am saying the Taiwanese should do better with how they execute their arms procurement (instead of doing U-turns) or diverting money for corruption. For Taiwan’s sake, in addition to the build plan for 8 submarines, I remain hopeful for their planned local build programs for four frigates/destroyers, 10 to 15 3,000-ton catamaran frigates, and amphibious transport docks to replace 11 dock landing ships and tank landing ships.

20. The Taiwanese reserve mobilisation system does not work. It does not work because they are not seriously trying — in contrast, a significant part of the Finnish total defence concept is that there's lots of peacetime know-how that is useful for the Army. Even Finnish civilian construction workers will assist in creating fortifications and other infrastructure that might prove useful in case of war, when mobilised. In Finland, all men above 18 years of age are liable to serve either 165, 255 or 347 days. Rank-and-file reservists in Finland can get trained to become NCOs and existing NCOs trained into officers.

21. Under the present circumstances, do you think the Taiwanese can last 2 weeks to 2 months fighting alone? With the F-16V upgrade, the Taiwanese have done all they can for their AN/APG-83 Scalable Agile Beam Radar equipped F-16 fleet that are Harpoon armed.
 
Last edited:

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member
8. No help will be coming to Taiwan (and it is not even a member of the UN) unless there is a legal framework
If the US or anyone else thinks it's absolutely necessary to intervene, they'll do so and get their lawyers to draft something quickly. Any assurances necessary from Taiwan aren't going to be withheld. Countries aren't going to go "we really need to help Taiwan out - but it's going to take at least 3 weeks of committee discussions first".
No country, even the US is willing to enter into any treaty like agreement with Taiwan — due to inherent mistrust of all parties. The Taiwanese do not trust the Americans and vice versa. I would go so far as to say that the Taiwanese should not be trusted.
I have no idea what you're basing that statement on. Taiwan is eminently trustworthy enough, otherwise countries wouldn't have de-facto embassies there or make trade/investment deals with it.

The Americans have a policy of strategic ambiguity that has been followed by four American presidents
I didn't say that it didn't. I said that a force would mostly be US (if not entirely US) in a hypothetical sense, i.e. if there was a force.

Entry into a fighting naval coalition is not a simple process
No, but if countries deem it necessary to intervene they will do all they can. The JMSDF in particular is very well-suited to work with the USN.

responses to Mar 2010 ROKS Cheonan sinking and Nov 2010 bombardment of Yeonpyeong in Korea, were carefully balanced
Yes, because South Korea decided the pace of the response. Also, realistically South Korea wouldn't need outside help against North Korea except from the US. Whereas Taiwan (and the USN) would benefit from support from other countries.

Keep in mind that since Taiwan lost its United Nations seat as "China" in 1971 (replaced by the PRC), most sovereign states have switched their diplomatic recognition to the PRC, recognizing the PRC as the representative of all China, though the majority of countries avoid clarifying what territories are meant by "China" in order to associate with both the PRC and Taiwan.
Yes, because at the time the KMT refused to take a deal where Taiwan could remain in the UN if they accepted the CCP were the government of China. Since then major countries have had unofficial relations with Taiwan to get around Beijing's threats of what happens if countries recognise Taiwan. The lack of formal diplomatic ties has nothing to do with how countries would react if Taiwan was attacked.

A simple commitment of forces or supply of weapons (to support Taiwan) by the Australians or the Japanese would be seen by the diplomatic community as mishandling the situation.
Well the "diplomatic community" doesn't set national policy. If the diplomats can avoid a military conflict, fine. But if there is conflict - including a physical blockade that would eventually require military action - the diplomatic community wouldn't have a right to complain.

ASEAN as a community
I know, which is why I said that ASEAN could easily not get involved. I was trying to show I agreed with you.

But IMO, China does not want to invade
Not right now, but who knows? Also, if China just pokes away at Taiwan that's something that Taipei can live with. "Distant" blockading of trade routes would be seen as piracy by the international community and would either lead to escorting of merchant vessels by the US and a potential coalition - because no US president apart from a weakling is going to let China dictate who it can trade with - or ships simply lying about where they were going to until it was too late (your scenario suggests a close blockade of the island isn't happening).

If the Japanese Prime Minister or the US President who wants to commit forces to show support, they will be faced with a real domestic politics dilemma (if it is not an invasion).
I disagree. Washington isn't going to see it has much option if China starts blockading US trade or indeed any trade to Taiwan. If it just sat back, that would give a signal to the world that China was now the dominant global power.

As for Japan, Tokyo would avoid any suggestion it was taking unilateral action or declaring war on China. But the mood in Japan has turned against China in recent years, and I think the public would be less objectionable to the MSDF helping out the US to deter "piracy"

it can take more than 2 weeks for unilateral American help to trickle-in
Yes, assuming that a Chinese build-up can be successfully hidden and the US decides to do nothing. Then again if the intelligence and political situation suggests an invasion is imminent, the US may start to get ready a response.

The corruption behind the "Lafayette Affair" has dragged on for two decades
You're conveniently forgetting that his all kicked off in the early 1990s when the KMT was still firmly in charge of Taiwan, democracy was still limited and proper oversight of the military non-existant. Since then people have gone to jail and some money has been recovered. Certainly the French nearly a decade ago were admitting they were going to have to pay up. But if Switzerland is refusing to return the bulk of the money they hold, that says more about them than it does the Taiwanese.

Are there any similar, more recent, corruption scandals involving procurement you can think of?
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #43
@Musashi_kenshin,

1. You seem to think that:

(i) Taiwan’s government and military leadership will do the right thing at a time of crisis. On the other hand, I have reason to believe that may not be the case;​

(ii) opening the air or sea corridor will solve the problem of delivering military aid to the Taiwanese — once conflict starts. Whereas, I believe that Taiwanese airports and posts will bombed so much and so often (on a daily basis) that the US has to send in the repair crews and equipment — that’s why it will take 3 weeks for first significant air shipments to get in;​

(iii) Taiwan’s citizens will fight — almost everyone I speak to in Taiwan wants to run, when fighting starts and have opened banks accounts abroad for that contingency; and​

(iv) Taiwanese counter intelligence don’t have their hands full with their own citizens trying to sell out — at some level they really don’t expect or want to prepare.​

2. Singapore is the only country that sends our conscript soldiers to train in Taiwan; and we do observe them first hand. I can only feel sad for their soldiers as we take training much more seriously than them. We care for our privates and NCOs in a way that they don’t. We have better weapons and better doctrine. We know we spend more to make our operational training for the units to be realistic. When the Taiwanese Army see Singaporean troops at our unilateral training exercises, they tell us they feel demoralised (when they look at how they train when compared to us).

3. Are you telling me you have observed the Taiwanese Army first hand and met their rank and file? Their majors and LTCs are great at making presentations but go talk to their men and NCOs. Ask them if they will fight or run for cover.

4. In the ‘80s and ‘90s the Taiwanese were an above average conscript army — they would give the Koreans a run for their money.
(i) Born out of the Korean War and the decades-long standoff on the peninsula, South Korea’s mandatory service system sees draftees undergoing four weeks of basic training and around two years of total service time for all branches. The decreased basic training time is the result of an interesting doctrinal difference. South Korean draftees are integrated into regular units to fulfill manpower requirements for lower enlisted ranks and they don't receive the same specialized training and leadership opportunities as volunteer soldiers. During their compulsory service, draftees can only reach the rank of sergeant.​
(ii) After completing 9 weeks of basic training, most Singaporean recruits will be immediately assigned to an operational unit where they serve out the remainder of their NS time (whose total duration is 22 months), with combat training provided until the unit is turned operational — at which time it is used for operational duties. Some high-performers will be selected for leadership training, undergoing a 22-week specialized NCO training, or a 38-week Officer Cadet Course.​
(iii) Despite going all volunteer in 2020, the Taiwanese regular army are not better, in training, in doctrine or tactics. But this general statement on standards of their army does not include Taiwanese special forces (that have to undergo a 350-kilometer march) and these elite troops are trained to a very high standard.​
(iv) Taiwan’s conscripts serve a period of four months. This is seen as insufficient to meet the stated purpose of bolstering manpower in times of conflict. With increasingly sophisticated weapon systems, Taiwanese draftees will need more time to master both their skills and equipment.​

5. Singapore’s Army has an all professional arm in the ADF. Except for their Special Forces, regular Taiwan Army troops can’t hope to match our conscripts much less our professional infantry troops — the work up process to get our ADF ready and operational is a golden mile ahead of the Taiwanese.

PS. See this link for details of the late ‘80s Di Xia Jie Incident where there was a fight between 4SIR and their local police.
 
Last edited:

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member
(i) Taiwan’s government and military leadership will do the right thing at a time of crisis. On the other hand, I have reason to believe that may not be the case
It's impossible to know. It just takes one weak Prime Minister or President to paralyse a country in a time of crisis. But it's not something you can base assumptions on, otherwise you're taking the hypothetical so far it becomes pointless. It would be like saying "what happens if the 3G dam bursts during a critical phase of a Chinese attack on Taiwan".

I think most people would agree that the current Tsai administration in Taiwan is fairly firm in its resolve and wouldn't hide under a table if China attacked. That's all you can say for a hypothetical scenario.

Whereas, I believe that Taiwanese airports and posts will bombed so much and so often (on a daily basis) that the US has to send in the repair crews and equipment — that’s why it will take 3 weeks for first significant air shipments to get in
Again, it assumes the US does nothing until hostilities break out. Also, a disruption to air shipments into Taiwan doesn't stop a (military) air or naval response.

Taiwan’s citizens will fight — almost everyone I speak to in Taiwan wants to run, when fighting starts and have opened banks accounts abroad for that contingency
Err, that's a pretty weird thing to say given that the vast majority of people in a country like Taiwan don't have vast foreign currency cash reserves to send overseas. Most Taiwanese will have some savings, but it's going to be in Taiwanese dollars, which would become worthless if China attacked.

Also, most civilians run away and hide in a time of conflict. The idea of mass civilian resistance is largely a fairy-tale, even in dictatorial socities.

Taiwanese counter intelligence don’t have their hands full with their own citizens trying to sell out — at some level they really don’t expect or want to prepare
Again, this isn't the sort of thing you can easily judge because it's not something any country can be transparent about.

We have better weapons and better doctrine.
That may well be the case. It doesn't mean Taiwan is in a hopeless situation. After all, I think most people here would already believe that Singapore's forces are well-equipped and disciplined.
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #45
@Musashi_kenshin, I am glad you are optimistic about the US Navy’s ability to intervene at the right time and I can see the points you raised. However, I am slightly less optimistic as I would assume a bad start state (which might not be the case). But from a planning point of view, I would assume the worse and hope for the best; rather than the other way round.

1. In my earlier posts, I noted that the Taiwan army has serious manning issues that seem to be chronic. Further, Taiwanese training standards seem to have at least stagnated. I do hope they solve these serious problems over time and being complacent will get people killed.

2. In contrast, the PLA is making big strides in trying to be a learning organisation. They even successfully concluded Exercise Cooperation, a bilateral army exercise, held from 27 July to 5 August 2019, in Singapore with our commando conscripts. The 10-day exercise involved about 240 personnel from the SAF's 3rd Singapore Division and 1st Commando Battalion, as well as the PLA Commander Southern Theatre Command Army's (STCA) 74th Army Group. See the SAF’s video of the simultaneous assault in the Murai Urban Training Facility in Singapore back in 2019.

3. The PLA is very different the past when Exercise Cooperation first started in 2009 in Guilin, China. This 2019 exercise in Singapore is the fourth edition of the exercise. Over the years, Thailand and Singapore are careful in what is shown to the PLA; and we are certain that they’ve learned everything they could from us. In return, we had an opportunity to observe their rank and file. PLA trains much more with the Thai military than the SAF.

4. The Thai and Chinese Special Forces have conducted 4 exercises under the codename “Strike”: in 2007, 2008 and 2010, followed by a gap of eight years until 2019. Thai and Chinese naval personnel (including Marines) have exercised four times using the codename “Blue Strike”: in 2010, 2012, 2016 and 2019 — which would improve PLA amphibious capability. The RTAF and PLAAF have exercised three times under the codename “Falcon Strike”: in 2016, 2017 and 2018. To avoid arousing concern in neighbouring countries, Thai-China exercises have focused on addressing non-traditional security threats (such as counter-terrorism), humanitarian and disaster relief (HA/DR) and maritime search and rescue.

5. While the PLA’s STCA 74th Army Group guys who came to Singapore are likely to be a specially selected unit, it does not change the fact that the PLA is impressive — they are learning fast and have the ability to be much better soon.

6. Thanks for your responses.
 
Last edited:

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
@Musashi_kenshin

You are arguing without supplying evidence to back your claims. Whereas OPSSG is basing his arguments on knowledge gained from either being in Taiwan, speaking to individuals within the Singaporean army who have been to Taiwan on duty, plus he's supplied evidence to back up his claims as well. Your arguments are starting to appear circular as well and this is getting to be a tad repetitive. I would strongly suggest that you start providing evidence to support your arguments.
 

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member
But from a planning point of view, I would assume the worse and hope for the best; rather than the other way round.
I can understand that. However, in that scenario Taiwan is without a hope, which is why I've been assuming a more moderate sequence of events.

Thanks for your responses.
It was a very interesting discussion, thanks for taking the time to give me your views.

plus he's supplied evidence to back up his claims as well
I don't really have a problem with much of what OPSSG said. I'm just less pessimistic not least on the political and diplomatic front. I didn't dispute the particular sources he provided or even suggest that his views on the capability of the Taiwanese military were false (even if I thought a comparison with the quality of Singaporean personnel and equipment was a little unfair).

Your arguments are starting to appear circular as well and this is getting to be a tad repetitive.
That's fine, I don't have anything else to say for now, and I enjoyed discussing the issue with OPSSG.
 
Last edited:

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #48
I disagree. Washington isn't going to see it has much option if China starts blockading US trade or indeed any trade to Taiwan. If it just sat back, that would give a signal to the world that China was now the dominant global power.
I think you misunderstand. It is not in China’s interest to get into a distant blockade type trade route war with the US Navy, rather it will be as Raven22 says:
I think that before you talk capability, you have to talk the strategy behind it. Try as I might I simply can’t think of any plausible scenario that would see a power try to destroy merchant ships wholesale on the high seas.

When we discuss this of course, we are really discussing China...

But how does China making a concerted effort to destroy international trade, like Germany in the world wars, possibly align with their national interest? They want to control the world trade, not destroy it. International trade, and the prosperity it brings to China, is the only thing keeping the domestic population happy and content (and stopping them getting all finger-pointy at the government). Take away that prosperity and China’s own population would become a much bigger problem than any external aggressor (hence why China are trying to develop their domestic consumer appetite, and reduce reliance on exports for their growth).

I can certainly see China deliberately disrupting trade, in an un-attributable way, as a cassius bellito stick their nose where is doesn’t belong (‘the continued disruption of international trade has forced us to deploy a naval task group to the Malacca Straights to secure trade in the region…’), but wholesale destruction of the world’s merchant ships can’t possibly be in their national interest.
...
I think a far better analogy is the Soviets attempting to close the Atlantic during a cold war gone hot. They would have attempted to interdict Atlantic trade not to force the European nations to capitulate, but simply to isolate the European theatre until the Red Armies had done the business on the North German Plain. The comparison with China are pretty obvious – China would attempt to interdict allied naval and supporting merchant marine movements to prevent interference in some sort of decisive action – seizing Taiwan, for example. The purpose of the A2AD system is obvious here...

I think we can all agree that the biggest threat to Australia is not a great power (*cough* China *cough*) attempting to strangle Australia into submission, but simply instability somewhere around the globe disrupting the international trade system enough to undermine the just-in-time economy of Australia. Trump doing something stupid to force the Iranians to close the Straight of Hormuz; a miscalculation in the South China Sea that Sea that stops ships transiting the Malacca Straights for a week etc. This would certainly be enough to significantly disrupt the economy, and may be enough to prevent us intervening militarily in whatever is going on, but it’s certainly not going to bring us to our knees as a nation.
That is why I think any fighting between China and Taiwan will result in US allies like Australia having to escort shipping to protect them from the parties at war which also means there are few if any allied navy ships available to help defend Taiwan’s SLOCs in the crucial first 2 weeks of the conflict.

Japan of course is different as its territory, the Ryukyu Island group is so close to Taipei in Taiwan.
 
Last edited:

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #49
For nearly four decades, U.S. policy has been guided by the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, the three joint communiques between Washington and Beijing, and the Six Assurances provided by President Reagan to Taipei in 1982.

All of these policy elements are important, but in this post we cover the Six Assurances, partly because there has been some confusion about them over the years.

David R. Stilwell, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, U.S. Department of State, following his own discussion of the 6 Assurances, at the Heritage Foundation said: "It is important to review history like this because Beijing has a habit of distorting it. So we should go back and consult the facts as often as we’re able."

The American declassification of the Six Assurances as very much — perhaps primarily — about undercutting PRC attempts to "distort" history. When PRC actors accuse the US of straying from the Three Communiques. In other words, declassifying these memos is not primarily intended to tell the PRC what the PRC already knows. It is intended to tell the rest of the world what the PRC already knows.

Declassified cables, sent in 1982 from the US State Department, detail the Six Assurances:
  1. The United States has not agreed to set a date for ending arms sales to Taiwan.
  2. The United States has not agreed to consult with the PRC on arms sales to Taiwan.
  3. The United States will not play mediation role between Taipei and Beijing.
  4. The United States has not agreed to revise the Taiwan Relations Act.
  5. The United States has not altered its position regarding sovereignty over Taiwan.
  6. The United States will not exert pressure on Taiwan to enter into negotiations with the PRC.
The Six Assurances, of course, don't include a collective security pact, but suggest, along with the first declassified cable, that US arms sales to Taiwan will increase concomitant with an increase in PRC hostility toward Taiwan. It publicly undercuts the PRC's preferred narrative that the Americans are not abiding by commitments made in 1982. Scholars now have a fuller understanding of what was promised to Deng. Indeed, paragraphs 1-5 of the Eagleburger memo are arguably more important than the Six Assurances. In 2019 this was declassified and it was written by President Reagan in August 1982. In the memo, President Reagan wrote: “The U.S. willingness to reduce its arms sales to Taiwan is conditioned absolutely upon the continued commitment of China to the peaceful solution of the Taiwan-PRC differences…In addition, it is essential that the quality and quantity of the arms provided Taiwan be conditioned entirely on the threat posed by the PRC.”

Together, the Stilwell speech and the memos make the case for continued arms sales to Taiwan.
 
Last edited:

Vivendi

Member
"China as a faltering contender" hypothesis:
Examples of the "faltering contender" hypothesis includes Japan 1941 and Germany 1914.

What do the experts think about this hypothesis?

The oped is pointing to several Chinese weaknesses including COVID related, slowing economic momentum, tensions with India, and "demographic time bomb".

One aspect of concern for China involves their own "province" Taiwan:
[F]ollowing a US government directive, Taiwan-based TSMC, the world’s largest semiconductor manufacturer will cease supplying China-based Huawei, the world’s largest telecommunications equipment maker.

Semi-conductors are the brains of mobile and telecommunication systems and this US action exposes China’s vulnerabilities.
Cash is almost non-existent in China. Consumer payments for taxis, takeaway noodles or electricity accounts are made with mobile devices. Even Chinese street beggars take mobile payments with QR codes.

More than a billion Chinese out of a population of 1.4 billion make mobile payments. Cutting supply of semiconductors to Huawei wounds the Chinese national champion and the world’s largest producer of 5G mobile technology. It also assaults the foundations of 5G deployment within China, China's future economic development and China’s ability to favourably shape global telecommunications standards
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
"China as a faltering contender" hypothesis:
Examples of the "faltering contender" hypothesis includes Japan 1941 and Germany 1914.

What do the experts think about this hypothesis?

The oped is pointing to several Chinese weaknesses including COVID related, slowing economic momentum, tensions with India, and "demographic time bomb".

One aspect of concern for China involves their own "province" Taiwan:

Well in recent times there have been many comparisons of the current geostrategic and geopolitical situation to that of 1914 and to the late 1930s. This is the first time that I can recall seeing one linking the Pearl Harbour attack and the current situation.

I tend to disagree with the 1914 comparisons because even though the economic situations were similar, the geopolitical situation wasn't and a major under current for change in political and social systems in many European countries was happening at the time. By the end of 1919 many of the ruling European royal houses ceased to wear their crowns and in the next 20 years more would lose their crowns. The same cannot be said today, except for the US. I would also argue that WW2 is WW1 Part 2 because the greviances of WW1 were never addressed by the Treaty of Versailles. In fact it's my contention that the Treaty actually exacerbated the conditions, especially in Germany, and was the opening salvo of WW2.

It is my view that the mid - late 1930s is a more relevant analogue for the current geostrategic and geopolitical situation. The PRC is the aggressive, bullying nation that can either be an analogue for Nazi Germany, Fascist Italy, or Imperial Japan. ASEAN is middle Europe, hoping that the aggressor will go pick on someone else. The EU and UK are the France and Britain of the 1930s , and the US it's doing what it did in 1940, with the main difference is that it isn't isolationist. However it's unprepared, unpredictable and is returning to isolationism, which isn't uniquely Trumpian, but was happening under Obama as well but not so openly or so quickly.

So where do we sit at the moment? 1937 - 38 if I am optimistic. A lot depends upon two people. The President of the United States and the General Secretary of the Chinese Communist Party because it is those two individuals who have the final say in their respective countries. If they are level headed logical rational individuals, not given to emotional outbursts or egotism, then maybe war will be avoidable. If not then pass the ammo please.
 

John Fedup

The Bunker Group
The 1914 scenario proposed by the article is interesting as would be knowing Wilhelmine Germany’s view of Russia’s Industrial progress and eventual threat. Had WW 1 been delayed by 10 years and Russia’s Czarist government managed to create a rival industrial economy, which side would England and France be on. France likely would still be bitter over the 1870 defeat by Prussia but England would have concerns over an emerging Russia. Letting Germany, Russia, and France do what ever and siting on the sidelines would be an option. Nevertheless the social upheaval going on before the war would likely have been more intense had war been delayed so all sorts of outcomes might have occurred.

As for the Japan comparison, I don’t think the PRC’s situation is faltering to the extent that Imperial Japan was in 1940. Then again, who really knows what troubles may be lurking within the CCP bubble?
 

ngatimozart

Super Moderator
Staff member
Verified Defense Pro
I agree, for all intents and purposes the PRC are not at war attempting to subdue a foreign nation, unlike the Imperial Japan was. Also political dynamics within the two countries are different. At that stage Imperial Japan was ruled by the military, but the Imperial Japanese Army was at war with the Imperial Japanese Navy and any other wars were basically secondary. So there was no unity of the Imperial military forces. In the modern day PRC, all of the military and security forces are under the command of the Chairman of the Central Military Commission of the CCP, who also happens to be the Secretary General of the CCP. So they are united in their cause.

WRT the PRC faltering, economically it's facing a downturn, part of which is its own doing. That's going to cause political problems for the Politburo because peoples earnings will drop and the cost of living will increase, just like it is in most other countries. There will be job losses and people will have little or no income. Unemployed people with no money and no hope have plenty of time to think about their lot in life and some or many may reach the conclusion that the CCP is the cause of their problems and maybe it has lost the mandate of heaven. If enough people believe that the CCP Dynasty has lost the mandate of heaven, then the people have heaven's leave to rebel and replace the old Dynasty with a new one. That is what the Politburo and upper echelons of the CCP fear, and the slightest inkling will lead to serious crackdowns. The best ploy is to create a foreign adventure and threat to the Middle Kingdom, giving the masses something to concentrate on, to vent their anger on, and of course distract them from the worsening domestic economic and social conditions.
 

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #54
Taiwanese intelligence caught spying on US Officials at Deputy Assistant Secretary of State level by using a honey trap.

In a 2019 incident proves that friends spy on friends too. It’s unclear why or when the FBI first started investigating David An, a think-tank researcher with a security clearance but an affidavit filed by an agent assigned to the FBI’s counterintelligence branch revealed that in March 2016, federal agents had a warrant to eavesdrop on An’s communications with a Taiwanese official—who worked for Taiwan’s National Security Bureau. At one point, An also held a top-secret security clearance through his earlier work for the State Department as an intern and then an action officer in the Office of Regional Security and Arms Transfers in the East Asia-Pacific bureau. Spying on the Americans is not limited to China, Russia or Iran or only via honey traps.

Like Taiwan, China is an effective user of honey traps in both US and Taiwan. The 2014 US case of former Army Lt. Col. Benjamin Bishop — where the spying was focused on Korean interest in acquiring an anti-missile capability. In 2006 former DIA intelligence analyst Ronald Montaperto was sentenced to prison. During a US Navy and FBI counterintelligence “ruse” operation, he admitted providing Chinese military attaches with Secret and Top Secret information.
A 60-year-old retired Taiwanese army LTC Lan Yan-yi (藍彥逸), was given a 30-month jail term by the Pingtung District Court in May for violating the National Security Act and the National Intelligence Services Act. In the era of great power competition, counter-intelligence work is a growth Industry.
 
Last edited:

OPSSG

Super Moderator
Staff member
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #56
Taiwan is reportedly going to get access to the SLAM-ER. Not quite "game-changing" and also dependent on numbers being offered for sale, but still a significant development.

Good for Taiwan. Thanks for your update.

On occasion, I am reminded once again why no one should trust Taiwan — as they keep changing their position, depending on which political party is in power in Taipei. Taiwan’s former Defense Minister Cheng Wei-yuan's response to the 1988 Johnson Reef clash between Beijing and Hanoi, was to suggest that Taipei would help Beijing defend the islands if asked. Cheng Wei-yuan was Taiwan’s Defence Minister from 1987 to 1989 under the KMT government.

We should keep in mind that Taiwan has changed its position over the years. Under the Democratic Progressive Party and President Tsai Ing-wen (that was sworn in for a second term as President of Taiwan), there is no chance that Taiwan will support China in a South China Sea dispute.
 
Last edited:

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member
On occasion, I am reminded once again why no one should trust Taiwan — as they keep changing their position, depending on which political party is in power in Taipei.
To be honest that sounds like a lot of governments worldwide. Look at South Korea. Its previous President signed an agreement with Japan that supposedly resolved historical issues between them, and her successor tore it up. He had the right to do that, but it was largely unexpected.

Also, 1988 was a long time ago, and I doubt the KMT would say that now. If they did they'd get another drubbing at the polls.
 
Last edited:

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member

The latest poll conducted by ETtoday has found that close to 67 percent of the respondents think Taiwan should return to its one-year compulsory military service to counter threats from China. ... When asked whether Taiwan should begin drafting women for its armed forces, 52 percent of the respondents support the idea...
......
The idea of including women in the military draft was first suggested by Taipei City Councilor Hsu Chiao-hsin's (徐巧芯) during a political talk show in September. Taiwan's Defense Minister Yen Teh-fa (嚴德發) has responded to such suggestions and confirmed that the idea is being considered by the Ministry of National Defense (MND).
Thought this article was interesting, as I understand one reason compulsory service was reduced was because of its unpopularity. If public opinion is now swinging back to supporting it because of aggressive actions by the PLA then the government is more likely to reconsider.

Furthermore if women are included in the draft then naturally it will increase the number of reservists available, which wouldn't be a bad thing.

(I've snipped the article down to just show the support values so the quoted text didn't collapse.)
 

swerve

Super Moderator
To be honest that sounds like a lot of governments worldwide. Look at South Korea. Its previous President signed an agreement with Japan that supposedly resolved historical issues between them, and her successor tore it up. He had the right to do that, but it was largely unexpected.

Also, 1988 was a long time ago, and I doubt the KMT would say that now. If they did they'd get another drubbing at the polls.
Some of the historical issues covered in the agreement you refer to had supposedly been resolved in the 1960s, when that president's father was president, but it didn't stop her raising them again, just as China has raised issues supposedly resolved under Mao.
 

Musashi_kenshin

Well-Known Member

Not directly related to the earlier article, which talked about points under review. This is about changes to the Taiwan reserves that are planned to be introduced, e.g:
  1. New agency to manage reservists;
  2. Increasing number of reserve brigades from 7 to 12;
  3. Reservists to get the same equipment as used by professional soldiers;
  4. Training every year instead of every 2 years;
  5. Number of recalled reservists to increase from 120,000 to 260,000 (I guess for the annual training); and
  6. Daily wages to be increased between 20% and 50%.
@OPSSG, do you think that's a step or two in the right direction?
 
Last edited:
Top