Tag Archives: TAIWAN

China is hostile to Taiwan. How have the United States and Australia responded? | Instant News


The clock is ticking. Taiwan and mainland China appear to be on a colliding course, a flashpoint that could trigger a regional catastrophe or even a global conflict.

China is increasing military pressure on Taiwan, sending military aircraft to Taiwanese territory.

The attacks occurred almost every day. Taiwan’s Minister of Defense, Joseph Wu, has warned that the Chinese drone might be shot down and, if attacked, Taiwan would defend itself “until the last day”.

And it probably should.

Xi’s company in Taiwan

Chinese President Xi Jinping has made it clear that under his watch, he wants Taiwan to be returned to the mainland. He warned that he would use every means necessary, even force, to achieve it.

Xi couldn’t back down. A fake “strong man” doesn’t just have to appear strong – he has to be strong.

His dream in China is a rejuvenated and powerful country with the Chinese Communist Party at the center of everything.

In order to “harmonize” the country, he has crushed dissent, locked up and oppressed Uyghur Muslims – who are internationally described as “ethnic cleansing” or even “genocide” – cracking down on freedom and democracy in Hong Kong and directing Taiwan in its sights.

Territory and sovereignty are sacred to Xi. His forces have clashed with Indian soldiers on the disputed border, and he has claimed and militarized islands in the South China Sea.

A Chinese aircraft carrier strike group training near Taiwan (photo file).(

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But Taiwan is most critical of all. This is an unfinished business. Feelings of drunkenness from the war between Mao Zedong’s Communist forces and the Nationalists supported by Chiang Kai-shek’s US.

After Mao claimed victory in 1949, those loyal to Chiang fled from the mainland to Taiwan.

Xi has styled himself in the image of Mao. He wants to finish the revolution.

He is building a strong military to counterbalance China’s economic strength. He believes that it is the power of the weapon that can withstand any conflict.

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The big question

But what if he attacked Taiwan?

The big question is “what will America do?” The US is bound to support Taiwan, to ensure it can sustain itself.

Although not obliged to send his own troops.

Xi may simply be betting that America will not shed any blood for Taiwan. If he were to mention America’s bluff, it would signal a fundamental shift in regional power.

American allies such as Japan and South Korea will question the resolve of the US and increase their own military posture and capacity.

If the US intervenes in Taiwan, it could easily spark a wider war, potentially dragging Australia down.

Harvard University military historian Graham Allison said such a conflict could turn into a nuclear war.

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Taiwan’s foreign minister said his country would fight to the end if China attacked

Both sides have ‘plans to fight’

Five years ago, the Rand Corporation think tank faced a potential conflict between the US and China.

It goes on to say, “while neither country wants war, the militaries of the two countries have plans for war”.

Rand predicted “a fierce initial trade-off, with heavy military losses on both sides.”

To counterbalance the threat of war, Rand recommended the US build stronger alliances with major allies.

Joe Biden, in the early stages of his presidency, is already doing just that.

The worry is that as China gets stronger, any conflict will become more “prolonged and destructive.”

China is definitely much stronger today than it was when Rand released his report. Under Xi Jinping, it was more assertive, even aggressive.

And the United States has weakened.

Rand calls his report Thinking Through the Unthinkable.

It is clear that while war may still (hopefully) not occur, it is no longer unthinkable.

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The president of Palau explained his distrust of China | Instant News


HONG KONG – He heads one of the smallest countries in the world, but Surangel Whipps says Palau won’t be bothered by anyone to decide its future – let alone by China.

Whipps, 52, became president of Palau last year after beating opponents who favor closer ties with Beijing.

The Pacific nation of about 21,000 people is one of only 15 countries that still recognize Taiwan over China, something that insists the Whipps will not change under its watch despite Beijing’s pressure campaign.

“If we are the last people standing, we should be because Taiwan has been with us from the start,” he told AFP by video call this week after returning from a trip to Taipei, home to the two allies. prepare a corona virus travel bubble for tourists.

Authoritarian China claims democratic, self-governing Taiwan as its own territory and has vowed to seize it one day, by force if needed.

Beijing has slashed Taiwan’s remaining diplomatic allies using a mixture of carrots and sticks.

In 2019, they had two successes in the Pacific, persuading Solomon and Kiribati to switch sides.

Only Palau, the Marshall Islands, Nauru and Tuvalu remain.

Whipps has emerged as the most outspoken Chinese leader in the Pacific, something he says was forged from Beijing’s more aggressive stance under President Xi Jinping, and his own interactions with Chinese officials.

“I had a meeting with them and the first thing they said to me before, over a phone call, was ‘What you are doing is illegal, admitting Taiwan is illegal. You have to stop it’,” he recalled.

“You know, that’s the tone they use,” he added. “We shouldn’t be told that we can’t be friends with this and that.”

Whipps said he received frequent calls from Chinese officials on his cell phone ahead of last year’s election.

“It will ring like 16 times,” he said. “After the election, I haven’t received their summons.”

Asked for comment on Wednesday, China’s foreign ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian said Beijing was “firmly against” Palau’s diplomatic alliance with Taiwan.

Ban on Chinese tourists

Beijing has largely opted for the diplomatic baton when it came to Palau recently.

Located about 900 kilometers (600 miles) east of the Philippines, Palau saw rapid growth in the number of Chinese tourists in the early half of the last decade.

But in 2017, China abruptly banned package tours, a general move to apply economic pressure.

The decision, according to Whipps, backfired as it raised awareness of the Palauan people about Chinese pressure.

“It’s just an example of how it’s kind of bait,” he said, summarizing China’s position as: “You do this for me, then we expect this and this.”

That skepticism is music to Washington’s ears as it tries to shore up an alliance in the Pacific to counter Beijing’s growing regional influence.

Palau is one of a group of Pacific islands administered by the United States after World War II.

It became independent in 1994 but maintains close ties with Washington.

Like other nearby Pacific nations, it has a 50-year defense agreement with the United States known as the Compact of Free Association (COFA).

US base

US forces are under pressure from Japan to withdraw their large bases in Okinawa and want to diversify across the Pacific.

Last year, Defense Minister Mark Esper became the first Pentagon chief to visit Palau.

Whipps said he would like to see more US military bases, something he hopes will make his nation less dependent on tourism.

“I think there is an opportunity for everyone to benefit from this,” he said.

As a major WWII battlefield, Palau is part of a “second island chain” that US military strategists see as the main obstacle for China to dominate the Pacific.

“Japan saw strategic importance then, and I think it is still there today,” Whipps said.

While Whipps spent most of his life in Palau, he was born in Baltimore, studied in the United States and speaks with an American accent.

He revoked US citizenship to become a Palau senator.

But he remains fiercely pro-US, and said Palau – which has recorded zero coronavirus cases – is on track to have all adults inoculated in May thanks to a vaccine supplied by Washington under COFA.

He also described Taiwan, which began diplomatic relations with Palau in 1999, as more than just an ally.

The island’s original inhabitants were Austronesian people and their ancestors spread across the Pacific tens of thousands of years ago.

“There is a shared culture and history,” Whipps said.

Beijing’s push to keep Taiwan isolated, especially during the coronavirus pandemic, has only increased international sympathy for Taipei, he said.

“Taiwan is a free country,” Whipps said. “They are a democracy and that must be respected.”

“As a diplomatic ally, you can’t just throw it away.” – AFP

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Taiwan to hold war games with computer simulations of the Chinese invasion | China News | Instant News


The Defense Ministry said computer simulations of China’s attacks on Taiwan would be carried out from April 23-30.

Taiwan will run eight days of computer-aided war games this month, its defense ministry said days after China said an aircraft carrier was conducting drills near the island and such exercises would become routine.

Computer simulations of the Chinese attack on Taiwan will be conducted from April 23 to 30 and will form the first phase of Taiwan’s biggest annual war game, the Han Kuang exercise, the ministry said on Wednesday.

The second phase, which will include live fire drills, will take place in July.

China claims Taiwan has been under increasing military pressure from Beijing in recent months, with China’s air force carrying out almost daily attacks on Taiwan’s air defense identification zones.

“The exercise is designed based on the greatest enemy threat, which simulates all possible scenarios of an enemy invasion of Taiwan,” Major General Liu Yu-Ping told reporters.

He said the exercise would use a Joint Theater Level Simulation system and would take place 24 hours a day.

The Chinese navy said on Monday that China’s aircraft carrier group was conducting drills near Taiwan and such drills would become routine, marking a further escalation of tensions.

The following day, the US Navy said Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group entered the South China Sea on April 4 for routine operations, its second visit this year.

The second phase of the Taiwan war games will involve mobilizing about 8,000 reservists to join gunfire, anti-landing drills, and hospitals holding drills to deal with the large influx of casualties.

Asked if Washington’s de facto embassy, ​​the American Institute in Taiwan, would send a representative to oversee the exercise, Liu said such a plan had been “discussed” but “would not be implemented”, citing military sensitivities.

Washington has no formal ties with Taipei but is its largest arms supplier. President Joe Biden’s administration has moved to convince democratic Taiwan that its commitment to them is “solid”.

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Taiwan Fund for Women in the Marshall Islands will be launched soon | News | Instant News


MAJURO – A one-million dollar loan to stimulate the participation of Marshall women in business, approved more than two years ago, could finally see the light of day in the coming months.

The details of the law for launching a Taiwan-funded program have proven challenging on both sides – leaving some women eager to see it launched.

The Taiwanese Embassy in Majuro said this week that everything was nearing completion and the embassy hoped the funds would be ready to launch before the end of June. The fact that two governments, three ministries, one NGO and one bank are involved can help explain delays in delivering the program.

“The interim council has been formed and over the months they have developed legal mechanisms and documents in close collaboration with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Taiwanese Embassy, ​​the Ministry of Culture and Home Affairs, the Marshall Islands Bank and the Attorney General’s Office,” said the Secretary of State. Anjanette Kattil. “Once these legal mechanisms and documents are cleared from all sides, the project can start immediately.”

In March 2019, the Kora im an Kil Fund was established through the signing of an agreement between the Taiwanese government and the Marshall Islands. It is a joint initiative of President Hilda Heine of the Marshall Islands and President of Taiwan Tsai Ing-wen. The Kora im an Kil Fund was established as a non-governmental organization chartered through the Marshall Islands Attorney General’s office at the end of 2019. Taiwan agreed to provide an additional $ 250.00 for the establishment of the organization in early 2020. Thereafter, legal documents, translations, establishment board, and related activities are running slowly.

The good news is, two years later, the Taiwanese Embassy says now all revised and translated documents will be sent to Taipei for processing in the next few days. Embassy officials said they wanted to see the funds flow as quickly as possible.

A provisional council has been formed to organize the process for women to apply for small loans. The Bank of Marshall Islands, which has run a micro-loan program funded by Taiwan, will manage the loan program for the Kora im an Kil Fund.

“We are working with the Interim Council, and all partners to get it up and running,” said Kattil. “One of the issues impacting this delay is negotiations with BOMI on interest rates for borrowers as well as an agreement on a rate of return to the IMF to ensure its sustainability and most importantly, turn around. This is a revolving fund to help our women in the Marshall Islands and the ministry continues to work with partners to make sure we get it right the first time. “

The Taiwanese Embassy said after the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Taipei reviewed and approved the final documents to be submitted in the next few days, there would be a signing ceremony in Majuro to officially launch the program.

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Dutton Australia Vows to Work with the US, China to Ensure Peace | Instant News


Photographer: Tracey Nearmy / Getty Images

Newly appointed Australian Defense Minister Peter Dutton said China’s Global Times newspaper was “half right” in describing him as a hawk, saying he intended to cooperate with the US and other allies in maintaining peace in the region.

“We don’t support the militarization of ports, we don’t support any foreign country trying to exert influence here through cyberspace or other means,” Dutton said Sky News in a television interview on Sunday. “We don’t want to see conflict in our region.”

Dutton first appointed defense minister last week in Prime Minister Scott Morrison’s Cabinet renovation, which added one additional woman to the bodies of 22 people. In a podcast released on Thursday, US Embassy attorney Michael Goldman told US on going “Strategic planning” with Australia to consider possible joint responses to war on Taiwan.

“We all want to see emerging superpowers like China and existing ones like the US work closely together,” Dutton said. “Obviously China already has long-term ambitions regarding Taiwan, and we want to make sure that there is peace in our region and that we can cooperate with the Chinese Communist Party.”

Over the past few years China has stepped up military exercises around Taiwan at the same time the US is strengthening diplomatic ties. Beijing claims Taiwan as part of its territory, even though the government in Taipei views Taiwan as a de facto sovereign state.

“We have worked very closely with United States of America because they are our most important allies, but we don’t do it in an antagonistic way, we do it in a way to protect our sovereignty and national interests, “said Dutton.

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