As China's might grows, Taiwan falls behind

Sep 17, 2011 | Posted by: roboblogger | Full story: MSNBC

China's growing military strength, from stealth jets to aircraft carriers and anti-satellite missiles, has shifted the balance of power in the Taiwan Strait to Beijing's advantage, and this will not be materially affected by an imminent U.S. arms deal with Taiwan.

Comments
1 - 20 of 42 Comments Last updated Sep 20, 2011
First Prev
of 3
Next Last
Drgunzet

Boise, ID

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#1
Sep 17, 2011
 

Judged:

1

1

1

Come on, sell Taiwan the good stuff to defend themselves.
Snowflake

San Francisco, CA

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#2
Sep 18, 2011
 

Judged:

1

1

1

Ma has given Taiwan to China. Actually with the signings of all the pacts and trades , Taiwan might as well be a territory of China. Plans are they are already drawing up plans to built a bridge from Taiwan to China, no kidding either.

Since: Oct 08

Beijing, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#3
Sep 18, 2011
 
(Reuters)- China's growing military strength, from stealth jets to aircraft carriers and anti-satellite missiles, has shifted the balance of power in the Taiwan Strait to Beijing's advantage, and this will not be materially affected by an imminent U.S. arms deal with Taiwan.

The duration of any potential conflict between China and Taiwan will be a matter of days, not weeks or months, analysts and experts say.

The Obama administration is expected to notify formally Congress next week on an arms package including F-16 upgrades for the self-ruled island China claims as its own, but not the new fighters Taipei wanted.

Beijing, meanwhile, has shown no sign of ending an arms build-up that is strategically focused on Taiwan, and analysts say the arms deal will do little to alter the balance.

China's military advances have continued despite a warming of ties across the narrow Taiwan Strait that followed the election of Ma Ying-jeou as president of the democratic island in 2008, and his signing of landmark trade and economic pacts.

Taiwan's military can do little to disguise its unease.

"There have also been no signs of adjustments to military deployments facing our country," Taiwan Defence Minister Kao Hua-chu wrote in July in the foreword to its annual white paper.

"We must build forces that are as impregnable as a rock."

The U.S. Defense Department's annual assessment to Congress last month warned that China "remains focused on developing the pre-requisite military capabilities to eventually settle the dispute on Beijing's terms".

Taiwan once held the military edge against a backward Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA). Today, experts generally agree that in the event of conflict, Taiwan would have at most only a few days to hold off China and get help from outside, most likely the United States, if they were to stand any chance.

"No one's really asking the question, could Taiwan beat China in an all-out conflict," said Matt Durnin, a researcher with the World Security Institute.

"The question they're asking is whether or not Taiwan could survive long enough in a conflict it would be able to recruit other countries to support it politically or militarily."

NO COMPROMISE

China has not compromised on its long-term demand that Taiwan is sovereign Chinese territory and must eventually come under its control.

Beijing's military strategy, despite the warming of ties, remains focused on securing Taiwan, wrote security analyst Dean Cheng of the Heritage Foundation in Washington.

"Coupled with limitations on U.S. weapons sales, Taiwan is falling behind," Cheng said. "Worse, the steady modernisation of the PLA has not been matched by Taiwan."

Taiwan in the past was able to rely on China's inability to project power across the strait which separates them, its own technological superiority and the help of the U.S. armed forces in the event of conflict, who would easily outclass China.

"China's increasingly modern weapons and platforms threaten to negate many of those factors upon which Taiwan has depended," the Pentagon said, pointing to China's rapidly modernising navy and air force and new, formidable ballistic missiles.

Unlike China, Taiwan has no nuclear weapons, and only a small number of Patriot missiles to defend against any missile attack.

Meanwhile, China's military spending spree continues. Beijing in March said it would boost defence spending by 12.7 percent in 2011 to 600 billion yuan ($94 billion), marking a return to double-digit growth.

Since: Oct 08

Beijing, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#4
Sep 18, 2011
 
China downplays its spending, saying it is upgrading its outmoded forces and that its plans do not pose a threat to any country. It also notes its defence budget is far lower than that of the United States.

But President Hu Jintao has made modernising the navy a priority. China is upgrading its destroyers and frigates to provide capability to sail further and strike harder, and is developing fearsome anti-ship ballistic missiles to take out U.S. carriers.

Last month, China's first aircraft carrier made its maiden run.

Taiwan, which for years relied on better equipment and better training, has been hobbled by the refusal of any country aside from the United States to sell it weapons, fearing an angry response from China. The advantages it once maintained in the air slipped away over the past decade as China modernised.

Despite Taiwan's public calls for weaponry, defence spending has not kept pace. The NT$300 billion ($10 billion) earmarked for this year is just 2.2 percent of gross domestic product (GDP). Ma had promised in his 2008 election campaign to raise that to 3 percent.

AGING FIGHTERS

The aging of Taiwan's fleet of fighters came into stark focus this week with the crash of two U.S.-built F-5 fighters, which it first put into service in the 1970s and still uses for training and reconnaissance missions.

The backbone of Taiwan's air force is made up of some 140 U.S.-made F-16s, about 60 French-built Mirage 2000s and about 130 Ching-kuo Indigenous Defense Fighters. Jets lost in accidents over the years are nearly impossible to replace.

This has spurred Taiwan's requests that the United States sell it 66 new F-16 C/D jets, a more advanced version of the ones they already operate.

The Taiwan-U.S. Business Council, which had lobbied for the sale of advanced weapons, said on Friday Obama had instead approved an upgrade for the existing fleet.

Without new jets, experts say, Taiwan would not last long in a conflict.

Training is the air force's strong suit, but experts say that a well-planned early Chinese missile strike could take out most Taiwan air base runways and leave the island's aircraft, hidden in fortified or mountain bunkers, trapped on the ground.

If the air force is old, Taiwan's navy makes it look like a paragon of modernity. It has four submarines -- two of which date from World War Two and still have some of their original brass fittings -- compared with more than 30 for China, including a few of which are nuclear powered.($1 = 29.615 Taiwan dollars)($1 = 6.392 Chinese yuan)

Since: Apr 10

USA

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#5
Sep 18, 2011
 

Judged:

3

2

2

The US should not bother selling any weapon to Taiwan. If the US does not view Taiwan as a separate nation but as a part of China, then the US should have no business selling weapons to them. That is considered meddling in another nation's affairs and that is the main problem the US has to get rid of.
Kyle Murphy

Taipei, Taiwan

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#6
Sep 19, 2011
 
How to speak like Americans?

Say one thing ( Taiwan is our democratic ally! China is a commy threat!) but does the other ( break diplomatic relations with democratic Taiwan in favor of Beijing).

Yeah In America we trust! But what($)/Hu does America trust nowadays?

Since: Sep 11

Quanzhou, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#7
Sep 19, 2011
 
But the fact is that us always sell weapons to Taiwan

“I'm From the USA, 5 Years Here”

Since: May 10

Haungshi, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#8
Sep 19, 2011
 
This is where Taiwan and China will eventually be united, because it will be in each countries best interests.

What I think you will see, is Taiwan will slowly get their people to become acclimated to a unified China because while Taiwan and China will be one country, they will be two governments, like Hong Kong is today.

The reasons for this to happen is obvious, because as China's influence and prosperity grows, for Taiwan to keep going it alone will bring their economy down along with their standard of living. Plus, because of the USA's continual economic stagnation, the USA will tell Taiwan they can no longer be their protectorate, that they are on their own. And finally, the worlds opinion of China by then will be significantly changed towards an over all positive perspective.
RayH

Shanghai, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#9
Sep 19, 2011
 
Unification? Here are the steps:

1. Ma Yingjeou wins the Jan. 2012 elections.

2. Ma Yingjeou visits mainland China and his ancestral home at Hengshan, Hunan in 2012.

3. Across the Strait Peace Accord signed in 2013.

Unification in about 20 years.

Since: Mar 08

Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#10
Sep 19, 2011
 
Snowflake wrote:
Ma has given Taiwan to China. Actually with the signings of all the pacts and trades , Taiwan might as well be a territory of China. Plans are they are already drawing up plans to built a bridge from Taiwan to China, no kidding either.
Ma did a great thing for Taiwan by signing that trade treaty with mainland China. Taiwan people benefit a lot from it.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-06-28/taiw...

Actually, I watched that debate on TV between Ma and the opposition leader Cai. It was a cinch to justify the signing. Ma was well prepared.

“I'm From the USA, 5 Years Here”

Since: May 10

Haungshi, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#11
Sep 19, 2011
 
RayH wrote:
Unification? Here are the steps:
1. Ma Yingjeou wins the Jan. 2012 elections.
2. Ma Yingjeou visits mainland China and his ancestral home at Hengshan, Hunan in 2012.
3. Across the Strait Peace Accord signed in 2013.
Unification in about 20 years.
Sounds plausible, but I'd give it ten years.

When the demonstrations were happening just prior to the Berlin Wall being torn down, I said it would take at least ten years for that to happen. 6 months later Berlin was united.

Taiwan and China's unification could happen even faster than my low prediction. But I think it is more a matter of getting the Taiwan people to accept it, probably through slow education and nationwide propaganda. Plus the old guard dying out and/or being replaced.
Drgunzet

Boise, ID

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#12
Sep 19, 2011
 
Jim Em wrote:
<quoted text>
Sounds plausible, but I'd give it ten years.
When the demonstrations were happening just prior to the Berlin Wall being torn down, I said it would take at least ten years for that to happen. 6 months later Berlin was united.
Taiwan and China's unification could happen even faster than my low prediction. But I think it is more a matter of getting the Taiwan people to accept it, probably through slow education and nationwide propaganda. Plus the old guard dying out and/or being replaced.
You are 60-year old now right? You will die long before any thing happens to Taiwan ok? Why don't you worry about your pathetic life.

If you fall ill in China, they will treat you with the back-ward medical facility. You will die there then they would harvest your organs. Did you sign a card saying you would donate your organs? Oh, they would cremate your body after they harvest your organs for sure, free of charge.

Since: Mar 08

Canada

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#13
Sep 19, 2011
 
Jim Em wrote:
<quoted text>
Sounds plausible, but I'd give it ten years.
When the demonstrations were happening just prior to the Berlin Wall being torn down, I said it would take at least ten years for that to happen. 6 months later Berlin was united.
Taiwan and China's unification could happen even faster than my low prediction. But I think it is more a matter of getting the Taiwan people to accept it, probably through slow education and nationwide propaganda. Plus the old guard dying out and/or being replaced.
I think you and RayH are too optimistic on this matter. But I agree with you on that it's a matter of getting the Taiwan people to accept it.

- First of all, why should Taiwan people to accept it? Unification will not give them anything extra that they can get from mainland now. Financial/Humane aids, if needed, could be as easy as just a phone call away.

- Secondly, why should Taiwan president downgrade himself to a premier of a province?

- Thirdly, US would do anything to prevent this from happening.
RayH

Shanghai, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#14
Sep 19, 2011
 
Jim Em wrote:
<quoted text>
Sounds plausible, but I'd give it ten years.
When the demonstrations were happening just prior to the Berlin Wall being torn down, I said it would take at least ten years for that to happen. 6 months later Berlin was united.
Taiwan and China's unification could happen even faster than my low prediction. But I think it is more a matter of getting the Taiwan people to accept it, probably through slow education and nationwide propaganda. Plus the old guard dying out and/or being replaced.
Two items about Taiwan:

* Those Jap-loving "Taiwan Independence" old farts who lived under Japanese rule are dying every single day. Their numbers are dwindling.

* Since 1987, over 300,000 mainland wives have been married to Taiwanes. With an average of 2 kids each, that's 900,000 new pro-Kuomintang voters coming up in Taiwan. That's enough to sway any election in Taiwan starting in 2016.

OK, 10 years sound good.
RayH

Shanghai, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#15
Sep 19, 2011
 
Drgunzet wrote:
<quoted text>
You are 60-year old now right? You will die long before any thing happens to Taiwan ok? Why don't you worry about your pathetic life.
If you fall ill in China, they will treat you with the back-ward medical facility. You will die there then they would harvest your organs. Did you sign a card saying you would donate your organs? Oh, they would cremate your body after they harvest your organs for sure, free of charge.
Why don't you worry about yourself? Social Security and Medicare will both go bankrupt in your lifetime. At least Jim has a good start in retiring in a cheaper country.

“I'm From the USA, 5 Years Here”

Since: May 10

Haungshi, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#16
Sep 19, 2011
 
Drgunzet wrote:
<quoted text>
You are 60-year old now right? You will die long before any thing happens to Taiwan ok? Why don't you worry about your pathetic life.
If you fall ill in China, they will treat you with the back-ward medical facility. You will die there then they would harvest your organs. Did you sign a card saying you would donate your organs? Oh, they would cremate your body after they harvest your organs for sure, free of charge.
How many times have I told you, I don't care what you think?

You really are an idiot if you think I care.

“I'm From the USA, 5 Years Here”

Since: May 10

Haungshi, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#17
Sep 19, 2011
 
Juran wrote:
<quoted text>
I think you and RayH are too optimistic on this matter. But I agree with you on that it's a matter of getting the Taiwan people to accept it.
- First of all, why should Taiwan people to accept it? Unification will not give them anything extra that they can get from mainland now. Financial/Humane aids, if needed, could be as easy as just a phone call away.
- Secondly, why should Taiwan president downgrade himself to a premier of a province?
- Thirdly, US would do anything to prevent this from happening.
Why should the people accept it? Because as the Chinese economy expands and they become number one, and the Taiwan economy is lackluster or stagnant, it makes perfect sense.

It will be a slow political process over a period of time, that is why the Taiwanese president will accept it, whomever that maybe.

Yes, the USA might, but I have a feeling, with China's respect in the world increasing that the USA will, because of many reasons, a lot to do with their economy, let the whole issue go.

“I'm From the USA, 5 Years Here”

Since: May 10

Haungshi, China

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#18
Sep 19, 2011
 
In my 5 years here in China, I have never met a citizen here who does not want Taiwan and China united. They consider Taiwan a province of China.

Apparently there is a growing voice in Taiwan for that to happen. It's just going to take time. When it comes to peoples livelihoods, they'll go first with that. So it could come faster than we imagine, especially if the Taiwan economy takes a few big hits.
HanSolo

San Jose, CA

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#19
Sep 19, 2011
 
Drgunzet wrote:
Come on, sell Taiwan the good stuff to defend themselves.
Million men with advanced weapons and NO will to fight.
Ten thousand men will fight to the end for their beliefs,
Who would you fear more?

Since: Mar 08

Long Island City, NY

|
Report Abuse
|
Judge it!
|
#20
Sep 19, 2011
 
Drgunzet wrote:
Come on, sell Taiwan the good stuff to defend themselves.
No matter what the US sells to Taiwan, the military gap will grow wider and wider as China is on the trojectory to reach parity with the US itself.

Selling weapon to Taiwan today would potentially mean handing that weapon to China in couple years of time.

Taiwan as a chess piece against China is lossing its value, and matter fact is becoming a liability to the US.

All 3 says US would not be selling the "good stuff".

Tell me when this thread is updated: (Registration is not required)

Add to my Tracker Send me an email

First Prev
of 3
Next Last

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

•••