Would the US go to war with China over Taiwan?

“Every time dozens of mainland fighter jets and bombers fly into Taiwan’s air defence zone, Taipei scrambles its own aircraft. It is not hard to imagine a scenario whereby a misunderstood signal or action could lead to a deadly incident.

There is considerable debate amongst analysts as to whether Beijing might be building towards a move to retake Taiwan by force.

Each time a Chinese government official or a senior party member threatens to do this it fuels fears that this could come sooner rather than later.

And such threats have been coming thick and fast recently: here is an example from this week.

There have even been concerns that the spate of patriotic military movies being released here could be designed to soften the public up about the need for war as a national duty.

Many people, especially those living in Taiwan, will be hoping that Xi Jinping did make commitments to Joe Biden in the way that the US president reported he did – and that a bloody cross-Strait solution is not being considered as a serious option.” BBC

Comment: The bottom line in this emerging and growing crisis is the question in the PRC/CPC collective mind of the solidity of the US commitment to Taiwan. Would the US go to war against a nuclear power that has the ability to deliver ICBM payloads to American cities? That has to be the bottom line for the PRC.

If it is true that the “strategic ambiguity” sought by the Biden Administration with regard to China is really “cover” for a “rock solid” determination to defend Taiwan at all costs, and it becomes clear at some point that China will shortly invade Taiwan, then the only logical course of action for the US would be to deliver a pre-emptive strike against all known Chinese nuclear weapons sites. All.

You can be sure that the US has the targeting already done and that this option is among the many contained in the “football” that follows the president and vice-president around A terrible thought? Certainly.

I am hearing arguments to the effect that the Chinese economy is in bad shape, that China’s status as host for the coming Olympic games would be damaged, that sanctions would be applied to China. Yes, yes, these are all grad-school fun and games arguments.

In my life, a life lived among sad, bad choices, it was and is always true that one should plan for the worst and hope for the best.

The Chinese should be careful. pl

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-58812100

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60 Responses to Would the US go to war with China over Taiwan?

  1. Lesly says:

    How would Russia react to a nuclear preemptive strike by the U.S. to defend Taiwan against a Chinese military invasion?

    • Pat Lang says:

      Lesly

      IMO, no

      • BillWade says:

        We’d probably have to think about North Korea as well. That’s the one place I could see all hell breaking loose.

    • Barbara Ann says:

      Whether a pre-emptive strike on China could be made without triggering a Russian response is a pretty important question.

      Russia updated her nuclear deterrence doctrine in June last year. It retains LOW (launch on warning) language (“arrival of reliable data on a launch of ballistic missiles attacking the territory of the Russian Federation..”). It also includes the wording “and/or its allies” in this clause and the following one dealing with the actual use of nuclear weapons by an enemy. Russia does describe China in these terms these days, even though there is no formal defense pact.

      I had always assumed a first strike with ICBM’s/SLBM’s against either Russia or China guaranteed MAD – because LOW means Russia would assume she was the target in either event. But if Russia is confident in the security of her 2nd strike capability I guess she has the option to wait & see where the missiles land. And then watch as her ally is destroyed? Doomsday calculus for sure.

      https://dfnc.ru/en/russia-news/fundamentals-of-russia-s-nuclear-deterrence-state-policy/

      • Pat Lang says:

        Barbara Ann

        “Whether a pre-emptive strike on China could be made without triggering a Russian response is a pretty important question.” Of course it is an important question. IMO the Russian would not risk destruction of their country for the Chinese. Ally? You think the Russians really consider China an ally? Remarkable.

        • Barbara Ann says:

          Allies? No more than “F*ck the EU” Nuland and her kind think of European countries as allies. Or the strength of feeling Biden has towards America’s “oldest ally”.

          Russia’s relationship with China is complex. I do think Russia seems China as having a common interest in resisting domination by the US & her allies. The extreme hostility towards Russia exhibited by the Borg, especially since 2014, has certainly forced Russia further towards China.

  2. TV says:

    A preemptive strike might work unless of course Milley warns China.

    • Fred says:

      TV,

      China’s the one that will make the preemptive strike.

      • Pat Lang says:

        On the US? If that were to happen, there would be appalling destruction in the US, but we outweigh them in nuclear capability so much that there would be no China afterward.

        • Fred says:

          I failed to precise. I meant China would strike Taiwan, though not with nuclear weapons.

        • Artemesia says:

          It does not appear Taiwan Semiconductor is up-and-running in Arizona: constrained by drought, it seems.

          Would US defend Taiwan to secure access to semiconductors?

      • Mike says:

        Alternative scenario to nuclear strategy is let Taiwan be occupied by China; the West then economic blockades, both Tai and Chi, rescind WTO status, etc., develops American substitute industries, etc. for what they provide; a real trade war ensues on the merits. Maybe a belle epoch retooling of American advanced manuf’g industries.

        • Mike says:

          OTH: One of AJone’s guests has been firm that the whole thing is leading for the programmed invasion of Usa by Chi or Rus. Joel Skousen, has opined for years that since Clinton admin EO plan is in theory/practice for USA to absorb a first strike on US military targets (by china, russia or both) then stand down for America to be occupied fulfilling the UN globalist single world govt. agenda. This would be consistent with aspects of cancel cultural, woke military & political kleptocrat agenda presently on full display. What does anyone think of that nefarious scenario. Thanks for the insights.
          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AE_iy89-gSY&t=779s @21:45

  3. Bill Roche says:

    No love has been lost b/t the Japanese and Chinese. In the late 13th century the Yuan Dynasty twice tried to invade Japan. What does that have to do with Taiwan? If Taiwan can be taken w/o any one lifting a finger to help her then the “handwriting is on the wall” for Japan as well. Taiwanese independence terminated with out assistance from others means Chinese hegemony for the entire Pacific. The Chinese play a long game. Every nation which looks out onto the Pacific had better make clear to the Chinese whether they are willing to Kow Tow. All that was “taken” from them in the early 1800’s is about to be restored to the Middle Kingdom. Unless others say no.

    • scott s. says:

      Currently watching a K-drama on the Imjin War. If Taiwan goes, expect the Ryukyus to be on deck.

    • Sam says:

      Forget about the Thucydides Trap. It’s the “peaking power trap” we ought to worry about. There is a long historical record of revisionist states getting nasty when their power peaks and starts to fade. That’s where China will be sooner than most think.

      https://twitter.com/halbrands/status/1441538222765404163?s=21

      This is likely the real issue behind the possibility of military conflict. China’s peaking power. I doubt this has been factored by the groupthink.

  4. jim ticehurst says:

    Sir…Thank you for the focus on the Grave Posturing of the RPC…and Its very Aggressive and long stated Actions toraed Taiwan…The RPC Actions all throughout the Region have been On Going..and Growing..in a Very dangerous Manner for A Long Time…With Massive Military Expenditures and Development….The Intent is Clear…and Dangerous…If it does Go Operational..I believe that it will be against the Current U.S. Administration…and POTUS Biden…who I suspect is the Most Profiled and Documented ever..By The Chinese Government at all Levels..So…Why..The Chinese are better Positioned Than they have ever Been in Asia..and The Middle East…The Global Economic Crisis is Growing..and Unstable..and Access to Oil and Coal are rapidly Diminished…and More Important to China than Diplomacy and Economic Relations..A World War is Forecast…In The Middle East..Involving The Super Powers…For China..Its a;; abpout The Oil..The Coal Deals have been Set Up all Over the World and South America..The Trend Lines are Clear..and Imminent…IMO

  5. Babeltuap says:

    China is in bad shape. Massive slave labor economies are difficult to manage. What to do with the old slaves and what to do with the new ones who know being a slave is hard enough. No point having kids. Their GDP has been hit with this problem for a while.

    Xi does want Taiwan but likely a diversion for a while. I could be wrong but just not his style. He spent over 200M hiring the best actors, directors in the land for a propaganda film.

    My understanding the real action is in South America. Peru and other “new” slave class the CCP wants to swap out for theirs. Get that piece, clean up China, motivate the people then game on for Taiwan which will probably just hand it over by that point.

  6. JerseyJeffersonian says:

    I would be fairly surprised if the Japanese, who already possess rocketry, do not also have, if not already assembled nuclear weapons, then the capability to produce them in fairly short order.

    The Japanese Self-Defense Force is involved in multilateral military exercises so that their interoperability with allies is kept up to snuff. Having been on the business end of nuclear weaponry, they may profess no interest in having these in their armoury; yet as realists, in a dangerous neighborhood, and likely not being reassured on the steadfastness of their US ally of late, why would they refrain from having them within their grasp on the qt at need?

    The North Koreans have done some remarkably provocative actions toward Japan, but a nation such as Japan could conceal their capabilities until the logic would dictate exercising them in self-defense. In the case of North Korea, no ICBMs would be needed, just IRBMs. And similarly with many locations in China.

    One certainly hopes that nothing goes sideways in that fashion or, following the words of General Jack D. Ripper from the movie, Dr. Srrangelove, everybody would get their hair mussed. Cue Vera Lynne…

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=RkpOSzcy0Vk

  7. Fred says:

    It is reported that a number of members of the French Senate have arrived in Taiwan for a five day visit. I wonder if Biden has anyone going to Taiwan?
    https://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/14455290

    • JerseyJeffersonian says:

      Well, there is a report in the Wall Street Journal that a small force of Marines, and a special operations unit have been deployed to Taiwan for about a year:

      https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-troops-have-been-deployed-in-taiwan-for-at-least-a-year-11633614043

      As to the French delegation, perhaps they are there ro make google eyes at Taiwan Semiconductor to woo them to La Belle France. Trump’s Commerce Secretary had a good idea in persuading Taiwan Semiconductor to erect a unit in the US, but since anything that the Trump administration tried to do is anathema to the unhinged leftists of the Biden regime, they don’t seem to be moving forward on this, as eminently logical as it might be. After the French got rogered by the Anglosphere in re the submarine deal, why not try to bring TS to Europe instead. But maybe I give them too much credit…

  8. walrus says:

    All politics are local. Forget the “slave labor” BS – the real issue is Chinas huge (by our standards) middle class. These folk are very wealthy by American standards, they are well educated. They have property and assets outside China and a lot of their kids are educated overseas. These are the folk that are driving Chinas economy.

    Now this middle class is starting to want to drive China politically – that is a threat to the CCP domination of the country and to President Xi. Furthermore, the Chinese are completely, utterly commercial in their outlook. They even invented paper money. If President Xi and the CCP cannot deliver a growing economy then the CCP and Xi are toast. The people know it and Xi knows it.

    So the question then becomes; how does invading Taiwan play domestically? The answer to that is what happens if it was not an instant military success? If it failed or bogged down, Xi is toast.

    As for Bidens behaviour, Australian want to know the answer too for the same reason as Japan.

    • Polish Janitor says:

      What you’re saying is similar to what liberal democrats say, that once the middle-class become wealthy enough it’s just the matter of time before they become politicized and God-forbids, ‘insert’ themselves into the national political process and elections etc…I don’t think it is applicable to the Chinese culture at the moment…yet. Interestingly, this is what Frank Fukuyama also believed that the people in every part of the globe would eventually want to become western-style liberal democracies in due time, a Marxist/historicist view which he eventually dropped circa 2006 in an essay called “After Neoconservatism”.

      I think the big question here is to realistically assess whether or not the Chinese would want to make the ‘transition’ or not? the secondary question would be to know whether or not the Chinese are even ready/capable for a successful chaos-free Democratic transition…I think the growing Chinese middle-class would probably contemplate hard and long about it as to whether or not it is ‘worth it’ to politically challenge the central government and to force it to ‘hand them over’ their natural rights of self-determination and pay heavy financial toll for it.

      • walrus says:

        PJ, yes, you make good points. However you assume that I think that the Chinese middle class want to “be like us” and transition to “(Liberal Democracy”.

        Well I don’t think that at all. The Chinese middle class want the economy growing and their wealth visibly increasing. They will indeed want more say in how they are governed but that doesn’t mean they want a full fledged liberal democracy at all. They may accept “democracy lite” or another strong autocrat or another party but they want the result to be strong government that suits their interests – they hate losers, weakness and disorder most of all. There will be no transition.

        • Polish Janitor says:

          walrus, I agree with what you’re saying and yes it would reasonable for this Chinese middle-class too seek some form of political participation beyond what they already have in place at the local and prefecture level (if I’m not mistaken!), which compared to our conception of ‘democratic participation’ can hardly be considered as ‘satisfactory’, but at the same time I look at the culture and their history and boy I would be quite unusual and unreasonable to risk all of that for ballot boxes.

          Another key point about the tragedy of this prosperous Chinese middle-class which I forgot to mention in my previous post is the fact that almost all of it is planned and controlled by the CCP in the form of a top-down national de-povertization/economic reform diktats and the ‘masses’ just ober them and unlike the West, there is no individual agency, and respect for private enterprise (at least not in the Western sense) as the main motivator of economic prosperity, so the very second the middle-class masses start fantasizing about political participation the CCP lords confiscate everything and return to state-control and downgrade their status to 1960s rural peasant class who relies on rice rations and so forth. But who knows, right? You are probably more knowledgeable than I am because you made good points on the topic so I subscribe to your view at the end of the day.

      • Barbara Ann says:

        PJ

        Xi seems determined to resist that “transition” and what awaits China at the End of History at all costs. I do not subscribe to walrus’ economic determinism theory. Chinese nationalism is a sleeping giant. If push comes to shove the CCP will awaken it and fill it with a terrible resolve. It seems there are attempts to start that process.

        • Polish Janitor says:

          Barbara Ann,

          I beg to differ. Where is the evidence that points to the Chinese nationalist sentiment striving for ‘transition’? I argue that there is not much going on in the ‘democratic transition’ department as there are no significant ‘sources’ generating demand for it. There is this good article that explains a important reason for it, especially in the case of southeast Asian cultures for which I have provided a link below. Anyways, the reasons for the lack of this source is rooted in ‘peculiarity’ of the larger southeast Asian (and for that matter, the Chinse) culture and how it naturally does not make room for demand for freedom and democracy. These are: 1.communitarianism, 2.familism, 3. decision-making by consensus, and 4. social and religious harmony. So as you see, there is no mention of freedom, pluralism and the supremacy of equal rights under law.

          Regarding Xi, the problem in totalitarian regimes such as China under CCP is not people as it is the ‘rogue elites’, the defiant top dogs who no longer want to play b the rules. The masses are controlled and submitted easily and effectively through various means, religion, financial incentives (e.g. China, Russia), fear of the Great Satan and what not, and last but not least through state violence. For example in the cases of China, Iran, Cuba, Taliban’s Islamic Emirate, KSA (both theocratic totalitarian) and to some extent Russia always take a look at the changing dynamics among the elites and not the people or student orgs, or NGOs or what not. Those are bullshit and the ones in the know, are already aware of it and for example when the EU or Biden or Obama- in the old days- would call-out these governments for gross human rights abuses their leaders don’t give crap and actually feel safe that their adversaries are not really serious about messing with their power. Nevertheless, fatso Mike Pompeo and the half-wit Zionist evangelicals think they can mass around with China by ‘activating’ one of the largest Christian communities outside the West under the guise of “religious freedom” like hot knife in butter. It’s nonsense and actually helps China by doing more repression.
          ____________________________________
          https://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1057/9780230376410_1

          • Barbara Ann says:

            PJ

            I was perhaps not clear. I was not trying to argue that Chinese nationalism was the driving force for a transition to Western liberal democracy – far from it. China’s has no Athenian democracy in its cultural past and no tradition of individual liberties of the kind familiar to us in the West.

            My point is simply that for some reason Xi appears to have decided to animate the nationalist force latent in the Chinese population. This first came to my attention after reading an article in Asia Times speculating that China was on the cusp of a second cultural revolution. The linked commentary (in Mandarin) appears nothing less than a declaration of war against Western neoliberalism and progressive/woke values – and the Chinese business & cultural elite seduced by such. It is worth a read IMO, even though a machine translation mangles it somewhat.

            Xi therefore does appear to be combating a rogue elite internally who are in favor of ‘transition’. It sure looks like Fukayamist dreamers expecting to see the inner American in every Chinese freed are gonna be disappointed again.

            https://asiatimes.com/2021/08/china-on-the-cusp-of-a-profound-transformation/

      • fredw says:

        The counterexample to your skepticism is, surprisingly, Taiwan. Nobody familiar with Chinese 20th century history or the Kuomintang would ever have predicted the slow loosening up of the political culture in Taiwan to the relatively open and democratic Taiwan of today. But it happened. In a thoroughly Chinese culture. And not by any intention of the ruling elite.

        • Polish Janitor says:

          The political culture that you mentioned was ‘brought’ to Taiwan by the West and the island-nation never had any history or meaningful past struggle regarding liberalization, let alone democratization. It took from the year 1216 (Magna Carta) for the West to fight for securing rights and the rule of law and then all the way toward democracy to become what it is now. Taiwan’s transition to democracy happened in the late 80s and 90s after the disappearance of the Soviet threat. Before then it was a pro-U.S. traditional military dictatorship and was relatively pro-business and pro-private ownership not democratic. During the Cold War it was considered dangerous and risky from the U.S.’ POV to see its client states (more like overseas military outpost nations) become democratized and receptive to anti-Americanism inherent in communist ideology, so the pro-U.S. dictatorship was ‘managed/guided’ to remain pro-business (with limited freedoms) but not democratic or else risk Soviet infiltration into its political structure. Same approach was applied to Indonesia, Thailand, S.Korea, the Philippines as well wit various bumps along the way. The great mass democratization during the unipolar era in the 90s made the transition possible and even mandatory especially for U.S. client states. So the Republic of Taiwan is still considered a quite young liberal democracy (foe example compared to Britain’s own transition from liberalism to liberal democracy in the 1830s which is considerably older, probably the oldest in the modern sense of the word) that needs U.S. support and commitment. The moment this vanishes, it falls under communist rule, i.e. CCP.

          • Pat Lang says:

            PJ
            Did the Japanese not rule the island for a while?

          • Leith says:

            Over 200,ooo Taiwanese served in the IJA and IJN. 30,000 died, either KIA or of hunger and disease in the Solomons, New Guinea, Philippines, etc.

            The Takasago Volunteers were a special group within that 200K. They were indigenous people of the mountains of southern Taiwan. Strictly combat troops they were the ones that gave the Japanese the reputation of fierce jungle fighters.

      • Eric Newhill says:

        PJ,
        What describe was our formal China policy beginning in the 70s. Help them to become wealthy enough that they are able to have their inner American emerge.

    • Fred says:

      “Forget the “slave labor”BS”
      Which of our other moral principles should we abandon?

  9. A. Pols says:

    The sort of “appalling destruction” in the USA mentioned in the comments would also result (in all likelihood) in there being no USA either, by which I mean no more functioning nation state currently known as the USA. Wiping out, shall we say, 20 major urban areas would, I’d think, result in the coming of the 4 horsemen to the American mainland. I just don’t think the complex organized network of command and control, logistics, etc. that make this a nation state would survive.
    On the other hand, I do believe the Chinese will be prudent and talk is cheap. In the long run, I suspect the Chinese leadership expects that world economic and cultural trends will eventually result in Taiwan being captured in the growing gravitational field of Chinese influence and will just fall into their hands naturally as US influence fades. This prospect is something most Americans tend to dismiss, but these things happen in the course of history and in the future Taiwan itself may make the move to nuzzle up to the mother’s breast.

    • Pat Lang says:

      A. Pols

      I know quite a lot about the various SIOPs. You over-estimate Chinese ability considerably. The number 0f 20 cities is way too high. Of course, if you let them strike first you might be close to right. As Buck Turgidson said, “Mr. President, I’m not saying we wouldn’t get our hair mussed. But I do say no more than ten to twenty million killed, tops, uh, depending on the breaks.”
      I see that you live in C’ville. Ex-military or an academic? I was involved a lot until 2015 in Continuity of Government operations.

      • A. Pols says:

        When I said 20, I intended no prediction. It was an arbitrary hypothetical number, but still even a half dozen would be a monumental gut punch. I think all the talk of war with China is foolish and hopefully the Chinese can read read the tea leaves well enough to know their best interests are served by patiently persisting in their mercantile project until they become so big economically that the point of war becomes moot. Why fight if you buy out the other guy? That, to me, seems the likeliest future scenario.

  10. Babeltuap says:

    CCP does not have the toughness to engage on this level. Reason they had to spend 200M on a Marvel style comic movie of how great they are. They also had to curb video game playing, ban most of Hollywood movies and crack down on the not so masculine pop starts and boy actors. And the massive aging population, they don’t have the luxury of losing ANY of their youth. They don’t have the bodies in the chamber to replace them.

  11. Personanongrata says:

    If it is true that the “strategic ambiguity” sought by the Biden Administration with regard to China is really “cover” for a “rock solid” determination to defend Taiwan at all costs, and it becomes clear at some point that China will shortly invade Taiwan, then the only logical course of action for the US would be to deliver a pre-emptive strike against all known Chinese nuclear weapons sites. All.

    What about PLAN Type 094 SSBNs or road mobile DF31B ICBMs?

    Each boat is capable of launching 12 JL-2 SLBM’s which are capable of carrying 3-4 MIRVs (ie 36 – 48 warheads) of varying yields.

    If even one boat is able escape detection and launch it’s birds dozens of US cities could be laid to waste.

    Road mobile DF31Bs are very difficult to track and each is capable of carrying between 1 – 3 MIRVs of varying yields.

    What about the Russians?

    Is the DC death cult so sure the Russians would sit this out on the sidelines?

    https://jamestown.org/program/chinas-nuclear-submarine-force/

    https://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/china/jl-2.htm

    https://www.globalsecurity.org/wmd/world/china/df-31.htm

    You can be sure that the US has the targeting already done and that this option is among the many contained in the “football” that follows the president and vice-president around A terrible thought? Certainly.

    Why potentially place tens/hundreds of millions of American lives (Chinese lives too – Taiwan is populated by Chinese) at risk?

    This is a dangerous game of nuclear chicken being played out by egomaniacal/megalomaniacal US politicians in an area thousands of miles from this nations shores without any strategic national interest at stake.

    CPU’s are not worth tens/hundreds of millions of American lives nor are the suicidal promises/guarantees of US politicians.

    China and Taiwan should be left alone to work out their issues amongst themselves without further US involvement/instigation.

    • Pat Lang says:

      personanongrata

      “China and Taiwan should be left alone to work out their issues amongst themselves without further US involvement/instigation.” Ah, this is my point exactly. My conviction is that no president of the US would go to war with China for Taiwan. Nor should we do that. The situation would explode in our faces, not because the Russians would risk it all for the Chinese, but because no matter how good our target intelligence is there is always the chance that we will miss some systems.

    • longarch says:

      Why potentially place tens/hundreds of millions of American lives (Chinese lives too – Taiwan is populated by Chinese) at risk?

      Ha ha, the gentleman is too droll. It is true that ancient Chinese culture thrives in Taiwan – and only in Taiwan — but most of the people of Taiwan do not consent to be called Chinese.

      I recognize that Taiwan may indeed be destroyed one way or another. I fear treason and bribery within much more than I fear invasion from without. As for the prospect of my own death at the hands of Communists, I can only sing:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h-8DtWiWiV0

      Meanwhile:

      Le sénateur français Richard qualifie Taïwan de «pays», au risque d’irriter Pékin

      https://www.lefigaro.fr/flash-actu/le-senateur-francais-richard-qualifie-taiwan-de-pays-au-risque-d-irriter-pekin-20211007

      • Barbara Ann says:

        longarch

        Awesome. Princess Yuki was an inspiration.

        Should the event of your martyrdom at the hands of communists be at hand (I hope not) you may also want to remember Roses devoted to the Prosecutor by Lin Zhao. Here is an English version:

        Inject this drop of blood into my mother country’s blood stream
        This drop sacrificed my beloved freedom
        Wipe it! Rub it! Clean it!
        This is blood!
        The blood of a Martyr
        Who can wipe it away?

  12. Deap says:

    Charges of a very leaky CIA, esp in China – how will we ever know what is really happening? Where is Fang Fang, now that we really need her.

    https://redstate.com/streiff/2021/10/06/the-cia-blames-incompetence-for-losing-dozens-of-agents-but-is-that-the-real-story-n452815

  13. Polish Janitor says:

    Col. Lang,

    This Taiwan-PRC situation is a particular case where the so-called ‘non-intervention’ approach that I subscribe to, I suppose, loses legitimacy. Would I be called a “neocon” if I argue that the U.S. must stand behind Taiwan as firmly as it can and help the Island-nation defend against the eventual (let’s be real, ok?!) Chine re-unification/invasion in the near future?

    • Pat Lang says:

      PJ
      Not a neocon, but you have to accept the consequences of your position and they are terrible.

      • Polish Janitor says:

        How is my position terrible? Just to be clear, it’s a clear classical offensive realism and not neoconservative. The ‘neocon’ label was meant as a sarcasm in my previous post. But let me get this right:

        So it’s necessary to defend shitholers in Afghanistan, i.e. Massoud Jr. and co., against another shitholer which you and TTG strongly supported, but not a full liberal democracy (and basically a U.S. island-base) with whom the U.S. has $100-plus billion trade plus other crucial strategic interests? What I am missing here Col.?

        • Pat Lang says:

          PJ
          What I meant and you evidently did not understand is that the result of war with China would be terrible. You don’t seem to understand how very terrible it would be. A covert effort to support Afghan resistance would have a low cost for the US. So far as I know the Taliban do not have nuclear weapons. Taiwan is a base for the US. What do we have positioned there? We have carefully avoided that under the One China policy.

  14. Jose says:

    The Egyptians used to do alerts against the Israelis and then stand done. This went for a while. Eventually Israel did not respond and the Egyptians launched a full attack.

    Israel was lucky, the United States responded and resupplied even as rumors of Russian nuclear weapons in Egypt to respond to any Israeli attack or U.S. intervention.

    The U.S. did not abounded Israel.

    Taiwan, IMHO will not be so lucky.

    The Japanese are to subtle to make public demands, something they never do.

    Great villainy is often called loyalty. – (Japanese Proverb)

  15. Eric Newhill says:

    IMO, whatever it is we need from Taiwan could be and should be produced domestically. Start building that out that infrastructure now. Whatever it costs, it is a good insurance policy. If patents, etc. are involved, then be prepared to violate them. China takes Taiwan, we take the patents/intellectual property, etc. Entice a few Taiwanese with the right knowledge to assist us, but only if truly needed.

    Then if China wants Taiwan, let the have it. Tell our companies that rely on the stuff currently coming from China that higher costs for made in America are a less a pain in the ass than a nuclear confrontation that would probably fry them too – and be done with it.

    Also, if China starts a war with Taiwan or other “friends”, then arrest, charge, try (execute?) US politicians taking Chinese money and furthering Chinese favorable policies.

    • Fred says:

      Eric,

      Our elites spent the past decades outsourcing manufacturing and getting richer and richer off it.

      “we take the patents/intellectual property” China’s been robbing us blind that way for years.

      “Entice a few Taiwanese with the right knowledge”

      The left’s elites, after setting he fire Americans, hire foreigners, ball rolling then invited the children of China’s elite to come to our universities by the thousands. George Floyd be praised! Think of what that did for University budgets, and pay scales, and not what that did for inner city Americans, especially in Baltimore, Detroit, Compton and Minneapolis. Now the AG is using the instrument of government power (DOJ) to go after those who oppose school boards that buy his son-in-law’s racist CRT training programs. (no conflict of interest or unconstitutional abuse of power there).

      • Eric Newhill says:

        Fred,
        I know. Our elites are greedy, craven, idiots. They need to be introduced to Madame G.

        Chanting F’ Joe Biden at public events seems to be fun for many. The People, correctly, have no respect for the elites. It’s only a matter of time. Then, in the aftermath, what I suggested we should do in re; Taiwan and China will be done. It really doesn’t take too many to make it happen. The masses of useful idiots will stand by and watch with collective finger in the wind. They aren’t even players.

        How many are actually dedicated die hard direct globohomo beneficiaries? 100K? 200K 500K tops? Against 70 million? And how hard would they die anyhow? A bunch of aged botox boomers and some younger thin beard tech nerds – not too hard when it really hits the fan.

  16. Yeah, Right says:

    The Chinese should be careful, absolutely.

    The Republic of China is not just the island of Taiwan. If the mainland wants to stir up a shooting war with the ROC it can do it very carefully indeed by seizing the Quemoy islands and the Matsu Islands.

    Totally indefensible as far as the ROC is concerned, but their seizure definitely starts an armed conflict between the PRC and the ROC.

    Does the USA pre-emptively nuke the Chinese mainland over those islands?
    Does the USA actually intervene in any way, shape or form over those islands?

    Much discussion regarding that during the Kennedy/Nixon debates, but I don’t see anyone in US politics mulling that question at all.

    But if the CCP wanted to test Washington’s resolve then that’s what they might do.

  17. d74 says:

    My tupence:

    Since 1949, the CCP has imposed untold suffering on its people, unthinkable to a Western mind. For political reasons only.
    The Korean War was a joke in terms of casualties compared to the ‘rectification’ campaigns, before and after Korea. (20 to 100 millions dead.)
    Forget about Chinese economic skills. In peacetime, the economy is a relaxing way to keep the people busy and distracted. Politic prevails upon economic.
    The party has long since won the “heaven mandate”. Nothing threatens it internally.
    So, if politicians deem that political victory (in the long run) requires a war, they will wage it.
    At worst, the remaining people will eat radioactive dandelions, that’s all.

    Besides, they don’t have to be stupid.They can act and move to achieve the desired result without open and declared war.
    Note that their offensive strategy is to expand their security perimeter, like Japan before and during the Pacific War.
    The question is what we are prepared to give up to defend Taiwan. It doesn’t look good, we are so prone to endless smoke and mirrors.

  18. j.+casey says:

    “logical”? Maybe you meant “suicidal.”

  19. Polish Janitor says:

    Yes Col. Lang I realized that and I apologize for misreading you reply and giving you the impression that the costs would mean nothing. Indeed the consequences would be terribly high.

  20. kakaouskia says:

    Greetings Colonel

    I am wondering if geography might be a limiting factor in any concept of “first strike” from US against China.

    Harbin city is roughly 400Km from the Russian border. While I believe the Russian systems are advanced enough to distinguish that the target is not the RF proper, will the Russians tolerate the radioactive fallout?

    Then there is the problem of North Korea. Are their warning systems – assuming they have – sophisticated enough to distinguish that an SLBM launched from East China Sea is targeting Dalian and not Pyongyang?

    Another thing that puzzles me is the kind of promises the US is making toward its Asian friends / allies. Recently the current administration in Taiwan was forced to publicly state that Taiwan still claims the Diaoyu / Senkaku islands as they are China and those are part of China. Yet a few days ago Japanese officials claimed that Biden confirmed that the US, under the treaties it has signed with Japan, will help Japan if China lays claim on the islands.

    While understandably the target of the comments is the PRC, it might cause some friction between Taiwan / Japan / US. After all, how one can guarantee the territorial integrity of countries when those countries still dispute land?

    Though in the event of a Chinese invasion I am pretty sure that Taiwan will not mind conceding a few uninhabited rocks if that will mean survival.

  21. jim ticehurst says:

    The CIA has a New Task…To Answer The Colonels Question here…a Toasted Taiwan..would be the Grand Cracker Check..Move…No Free BBQ Pork…No Fortune Cookies…So….I say China is More Tempted than ever..80 Percent at Least…All Possible scenarios..and Pros and Cons need to be on the Spread Sheet…Current Status of the USA The Instability Factor..Logistics ..Supply…Deployments Factored in…Manufactured Events to Divert..Draw away ..or Diminish USA Responses..Capabilitys..Domestic..Crisis of extreme types..etc…..and Yes…It would take a little more…Than a Toyota Truck and a Viet Nam Gun Dealer…

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