Addressing these challenges requires greater collaboration not only within the U.S. defense establishment, but effective leveraging of talents of allies and ad hoc coalition partners in the region. The U.S. reportedly has begun examining how to diversify defense relations with traditional allies in the region, such as Japan, South Korea, and Australia. Yet, little consideration appears to have been given to the significant role that Taiwan could play in an evolving U.S. defense strategy, including the JOAC and Air-Sea Battle. Taiwan’s future and U.S. interests in regional security are intimately related. Indeed, Taiwan is a core interest of the United States and has a pivotal role to play as an ad hoc coalition partner in Air-Sea Battle, JOAC, and the strategic rebalancing in the Asia-Pacific.Stokes and Hsiao call into question the inevitability thesis, that sooner or later China will absorb Taiwan as the inevitable result of increased links between the two. Like the way the US inevitably absorbed Canada... Consider also...
First, Taiwan should be the central guiding focus of defense planning in the Asia-Pacific region. In assessing JOAC and Air-Sea Battle-related requirements, the greatest emphasis should be placed on contingency planning for a PLA amphibious invasion of Taiwan with minimal warning. Based on a premature and faulty assumption that cross-Strait trade and investment will inevitably lead toward Taiwan’s democratic submission to Chinese Communist Party (CCP) authoritarian rule, prominent analysts have asserted that the focus of U.S. defense planning should shift toward the South China Sea and defense of the global commons.
The fact is that no free and open society understands China as well as Taiwan. Unfortunately, few U.S. military officers conduct in-country training in Taiwan, and there are no known students attending Taiwan’s National Defense University (NDU) or other intermediate/senior service schools. More educational exchanges between the two defense establishments are warranted, particularly for junior and non-commissioned officers. Even as the Pentagon has actively pursued deeper and broader military-to-military relations with the PLA, the number of U.S.-Taiwanese conferences held on the PLA has dwindled.Taiwan is a fabulously under-utilized platform. This piece would have been stronger if Hsiao and Stokes had explained how the US is going to get around the interpenetration of Taiwan's intelligence services by Beijing. Or how the US is going to work on deepening the alliance when a pro-China ideologue like Ma is in power. What S and H are really arguing is that the whole strategic thrust of US policy is headed down the wrong road. Those who envision standing up to Chinese expansion while handing over Taiwan to China are setting out to fight with one hand tied behind their back. This also means that the US is supporting the wrong party in Taiwan's politics; making the Chinese feel secure about Taiwan simply allows them to ramp up tensions elsewhere. But that goes without saying.
As if an ill omen of the coming hegemonic conflict in Asia, the standoff at Scarborough Shoal (the A on the map) is still ongoing as of yesterday....
On Thursday, a Philippine Coast Guard vessel and a third Chinese ship from the Ministry of Agriculture arrived. Shortly after, BRP Gregorio del Pilar and one of the Chinese maritime surveillance ships pulled out of the area.Does the Ministry of Agriculture in the PRC operate armed fishing vessels? It would indeed seem that way.
- Haha. Last time this ad was forwarded to me, "Amy Livingston" was in Taipei. If you run some Google searches you'll soon find that Amy is one of the great world travelers of our time, having made thousands while living in Dar es Salaam, Addis Ababa, and Goth Hashim Khan.
- KMT wusses out, won't hold KMT-CCP forum in Taiwan. This means that the party forums are always held in China, where they can't be seen by pesky democratic eyes or protested by pesky democratic protesters.
- Satellite views of Taiwan
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