• This topic has 164 replies, 37 voices, and was last updated 1 week ago by timba.
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  • Taiwan
  • Premier Icon DT78
    Free Member

    Was that really a good idea? why on earth provoke things? What was the necessity of such a dumb ass visit? Especially at a time when the Ukraine war is going on…

    Some sort of master plan to start ww3?

    Premier Icon nickc
    Full Member

    TBH, I think if Nancy Pelosi scares the Chinese enough to react by putting their armed forces on high alert, we should probably send her into every conflict zone, maybe the Russians would back off?

    Who knew 82 year old women could be so formidable?

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    Apparently, Pelosi has long been an advocate for Taiwan, human rights, democracy, etc. (i.e. critical of China’s behaviour). On that basis, this visit isn’t really as unusual as China is making it out to be, U.S. congressional groups frequently visit Taiwan.

    However, U.S. foreign policy is supposed to be the responsibility of the President, not the legislature. On those grounds, Pelosi should have heeded Biden’s request to not visit. The visit isn’t really achieving anything except antagonizing China.

    China is making a big fuss about this for domestic political reasons. They aren’t going to start a war over it. They are publicly making a big deal about moving long range missiles slightly closer to Taiwan, showing off tanks, etc. Those missiles could easily have hit Taiwan from their old bases, the public repositioning was purely for propaganda purposes. If they were seriously considering launching an attack, the preparations would be done as secretly as possible, not reported all over the news. The Chinese reaction is just propaganda designed to impress the Chinese population.

    Premier Icon DT78
    Free Member

    Been is reporting Chinese have set up several exclusion zones, encroaching onto taiwans sea borders whilst they conduct exercises. More than just moving some rockets.

    It seems like a really stupid thing to do, gives then a reason to be more aggressive and make a big deal out of it.

    And how is it ok she ignored the presidents request not to go? Or is that just all for show as well…. It was really approved but we are playing the pretend game?

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    Pelosi has form in really pissing off China – she went to Tiananmen Square with 2 other US politicians in 1990/1 and was arrested/frog marched out of there

    https://www.politico.com/news/2022/07/28/pelosi-china-taiwan-00048352

    Premier Icon avdave2
    Full Member

    Who knew 82 year old women could be so formidable?

    Well when you are at an age when you don’t have that many years left you can be. As long that is as you don’t worry too much about those with their years ahead of them.

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    And how is it ok she ignored the presidents request not to go?

    The U.S. can’t stop U.S. citizens visiting other countries. Biden asked her not to. She ignored him. I think she should have listened but there’s nothing Biden can do about it.

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    This article gets to Taiwan towards the end. Well worth reading.

    Premier Icon TheBrick
    Free Member

    Pelosi has form in really pissing off China –

    Good the CCP need thorns in their side. The reaction is because they are unnerved. If the CCP were not bothered there would not be a reaction.

    Premier Icon hatter
    Full Member

    Whilst Pelosi is far from a unifying figure, it is nice to see someone refusing to be cowed by Xi’s sabre rattling and the Taiwanese (whose opinions so often seem to be lost in all this) seem to be absolutely delighted with her visit, which should count for something.

    China’s economy is going through a major rough patch ATM, not sure a major armed conflict is what they want right now, especially as the West is more determined and united than it has been in a generation thanks to Ukraine.

    So I suspect it’s all just macho posturing for domestic consumption… I certainly hope so anyway.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    So I suspect it’s all just macho posturing for domestic consumption… I certainly hope so anyway.

    More likely IMO it’ll follow the same arc as Russia Vs Ukraine in the near future. China will annex the sea between them and no one will stop them because no one wants a fight.

    After that:

    China’s economy is going through a major rough patch ATM, not sure a major armed conflict is what they want right now,

    Depends how rough that gets for the population. If people begin to blame the government for their problems and dissent then the government might see a reunification with Taiwan as tool to shore up nationalism.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Full Member

    Well worth reading.

    That was interesting, thanks for finding and sharing it.

    Premier Icon Flaperon
    Full Member

    Was that really a good idea? why on earth provoke things?

    I kind of think that making clear to backwards autocratic bullies that their behaviour is unacceptable is the right thing to do.

    Look at the hysterics pouring out of the CCP at the moment. The language is utterly comical (“playing with fire”) and as a party responsible for literally millions of deaths they can’t really take any moral high ground. Particularly given their public support for Russia’s actions in Ukraine. Oh, and let’s not forget that they unleashed Covid-19 on the world – whether through a lab leak or their gruesome wet markets – and then denied everything.

    We might need some commodities buried under Chinese soil but the west could live quite happily without them and frankly I hope that’s what happens. Let the despots rot in their own filth.

    Premier Icon big_scot_nanny
    Full Member

    Well when you are at an age when you don’t have that many years left you can be. As long that is as you don’t worry too much about those with their years ahead of them.

    reminds me a bit of this advert really https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0EYRF9rTlA

    but in all seriousness, sadly I suspect that thisisnotaspoon is probably correct, but then again I believe it was a smart move to shove this issue onto the world stage now, rather than have a ‘bugger, I really wished we raised this back in xxx’ when it is too late.

    Premier Icon hatter
    Full Member

    If people begin to blame the government for their problems and dissent then the government might see a reunification with Taiwan as tool to shore up nationalism.

    History is littered with examples of regimes who tried to use military adventurism to shore up domestic support, it doesn’t tend to work if people’s concerns are basically material (i.e. poverty) and their situation is made palpably worse by that adventurism.

    Tub thumping nationalism only tends to get you so far in these circumstances.

    And whilst China is (on paper at least) far more capable that Russia, the military challenge facing them is exponentially greater, Taiwan is wealthy, technologically advanced, requires a huge air and sea operation to invade and has been preparing for this for 40 years, this will be no swift easy victory.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Full Member

    @hatter

    it doesn’t tend to work if people’s concerns are basically material (i.e. poverty) and their situation is made palpably worse by that adventurism.

    And yet:

    History is littered with examples of regimes who tried to use military adventurism to shore up domestic support

    Premier Icon DT78
    Free Member

    Still, her visit was far from a private individual / tourist trip. She arrived on a us government plane and did distinctly ‘government’ type things. So whilst I agree Biden couldn’t stop her visiting Taiwan if she wanted to as a private individual, she clearly wasn’t operating as a private individual.

    If some is acting like a ****, you really don’t want to give them more excuses to do it. I hope this doesn’t escalate. Thread I read in taiwans mitilary didn’t paint it in a particularly good light.

    Premier Icon ElShalimo
    Full Member

    Taiwan does have National Service, although according to the guy who used to work for me, he spent most of it as a Lieutenant getting drunk with his troops at the indoor crab fishing bar (best place to get blind drunk and nobody cares …who knew such places existed??)

    Premier Icon hatter
    Full Member

    History is littered with examples of regimes who tried to use military adventurism to shore up domestic support

    And the CCP have shown themselves to be acutely aware of history and not wishing to repeat it, hence why I think this makes an actual invasion less, not more likely.

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Full Member

    nickc
    Full Member
    TBH, I think if Nancy Pelosi scares the Chinese enough to react by putting their armed forces on high alert, we should probably send her into every conflict zone, maybe the Russians would back off?

    Who knew 82 year old women could be so formidable?

    Not many 82 year olds kick about with her kinda escort though.

    https://www.reuters.com/world/asia-pacific/us-navy-deploys-four-warships-east-taiwan-pelosi-heads-taipei-2022-08-02/

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Full Member

    And now we have both Air forces flying around and crossing the demarkation line, with live ordnance. This could all too easily easily kick off.

    Premier Icon revs1972
    Free Member

    Is it time to send Liz in with a multi pack of pork scratchings to calm things down ?

    Premier Icon pk13
    Full Member

    On one hand it’s odd timing but we don’t know why she really went an unofficial/ official vist to remind china and Putin that the US is not only concerned about Ukraine?

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Full Member

    It wasn’t an unofficial visit, she’s there on US gov business. I think ideas that Biden and wider US strategic thinking are against this are nuts tbh.

    It’s absolutely uncalled for provocation.

    If anything is going to encourage a war in Taiwan(that it is imminent, is a fabrication in Western minds at the moment, imo, China is in no hurry to do anything, and think in longer strategic terms than we do), it’s the US over extending its reach to places it has no business being in. Taiwan/China is a problem they need to sort between themselves. US involvement is unnecessary and is an extreme danger to world peace. It will only lead to further enmity.

    Also let’s not pretend the US is interested in Taiwanese democracy, they are only interested in stopping Chinese domination of the chip market.

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    China will annex the sea between them and no one will stop them because no one wants a fight.

    The U.S. navy conducts “freedom of navigation” exercises in areas that China is trying to establish dominance over. If China tried to annex the Taiwan Strait, that’s the first thing the U.S. would do. That would leave China the option of allowing it, which would be a huge public humiliation, or opening fire, which would lead to the U.S. retaliating. China know this and I doubt their leadership want a shooting war with the U.S. If they did, they would have started one already.

    And whilst China is (on paper at least) far more capable that Russia, the military challenge facing them is exponentially greater, Taiwan is wealthy, technologically advanced, requires a huge air and sea operation to invade and has been preparing for this for 40 years, this will be no swift easy victory.

    Exactly. The Taiwan Strait is over 100 miles across. China would need to send hundreds of thousands of troops across by ship. Those ships would be extremely vulnerable to anti-ship missiles. Even if an invasion was successful, the Chinese losses would be horrendous and they would have an island of 20 million people who hate the Chinese government.

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Full Member

    Exactly. The Taiwan Strait is over 100 miles across. China would need to send hundreds of thousands of troops across by ship.

    1.4 billion v 23 million. It’s not unachievable.

    Premier Icon ernielynch
    Free Member

    Also let’s not pretend the US is interested in Taiwanese democracy,

    The United States gave huge support to Taiwan long before it was a western style democracy, including throughout the long period it was under martial law.

    And of course government of the Republic of China in Taipei still maintains its territorial claims over all of mainland China, a point rarely mentioned when the PRC’s territorial claim over the ROC is brought up.

    Premier Icon ernielynch
    Free Member

    The U.S. navy conducts “freedom of navigation” exercises in areas that China is trying to establish dominance over.

    It’s worth remembering that the US was enlarging its military presence in eastern Europe year on year before Russia attacked Ukraine,

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    1.4 billion v 23 million. It’s not unachievable.

    Taiwan has over 1 million military personnel if you include reserves. They are already on the island of Taiwan, which is where the fighting would take place. Having a billion Chinese civilians on the mainland isn’t much use, they aren’t armed and aren’t where the battle would take place. To join battle, China would need to send armed soldiers to Taiwan, hundreds of thousands of them. To do that, they would have to be put onto ships and sailed across 100 miles of ocean. The constraint on China isn’t the size of the civilian population but the number of ships they have to transport troops, the relevant thing is how many soldiers China could actually land in Taiwan and supply with food and ammunition long enough to beat the Taiwanese defenders. Taiwan has a large arsenal of anti-ship missiles which would take a huge toll on the Chinese invasion fleet. It’s not impossible that China would win but the cost would be utterly horrendous. It’s also possible that China would suffer a humiliating defeat that would lead to the purge of the party leadership.

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    Also let’s not pretend the US is interested in Taiwanese democracy

    There is a lot of support in the U.S. for Taiwan because it’s a reasonably liberal democracy threatened by a highly repressive autocracy. That’s why Pelosi is visiting. If China did attack Taiwan, the political pressure on any U.S. president to intervene would be impossible to resist. Not supporting Taiwan would be political suicide for any American leader.

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Full Member

    I know your intentions are good fella but you are off your nut if you think Taiwan could resist the Chinese military.

    But that’s irrelevant anyhow, US involvement will cause a war here it won’t stop it.

    And don’t be in any doubt that we’ll see escalation in Europe, we will. Absolutely everything, should be done to avoid conflict.

    Pelosi going to Taiwan is batshit mental.

    Premier Icon oldmanmtb2
    Free Member

    China will struggle to cross 100 miles and deliver an amphibious assault without huge losses… this is why they have never done it.

    Premier Icon ernielynch
    Free Member

    Where is the evidence that China is not prepared to incur very heavy losses in a conflict?

    And China is actively and significantly building up its military capabilities, what it can’t achieve now it will much more likely be able to achieve in the future.

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Full Member

    oldmanmtb2
    Free Member
    China will struggle to cross 100 miles and deliver an amphibious assault without huge losses… this is why they have never done it.

    So all of a sudden these autocratic regimes now care about their people?

    Premier Icon thols2
    Free Member

    So all of a sudden these autocratic regimes now care about their people?

    They might not care about the lives of soldiers and sailors but a failed invasion would lead to the Chinese leadership being purged. A prolonged battle with heavy Chinese losses might encourage other neighbouring countries to become more assertive in the face of Chinese expansionism. China has border disputes with India, Vietnam, and the Philippines, plus disputes with Japan. If a Taiwan invasion went badly, then China would be forced to do what Russia has done and draw down forces from other regions to send to Taiwan.

    That’s assuming that the U.S. and other democracies don’t get directly involved. If they did, China would be in a naval war with pretty much all the advanced militaries in the world. It’s not clear what benefits China would reap if it succeeded, the Taiwanese semiconductor industry would be destroyed which would cripple China’s tech industry along with the rest of the world’s. However, it’s very clear that losing would lead to the toppling of the current political leadership. A Taiwan invasion would be enormously risky for China, the uncertainty about what would happen is why China hasn’t tried it already.

    Premier Icon seosamh77
    Full Member

    If China and America go to war, we pretty much all die, mate.

    That’s the reality. The 2 of them should stay the hell away from this kinda patter. And Pelosi should be heavily criticised.

    Premier Icon nickc
    Full Member

    I know your intentions are good fella but you are off your nut if you think Taiwan could resist the Chinese military.

    It’s really not at all certain that they could actually pull off a successful invasion. The Chinese military – who have no war fighting experience at all, (they’re last major shooting war was back in 1979 against the Vietnamese) and are both forbidden to exercise in strength because of how many Chinese Leaders have realised that they represent a dangerous political force, and are inward looking (to prevent civilian uprising) and like Egypt’s military; more used to earning money through using soldiers as cheap labour on lucrative infrastructure projects.

    They certainly have no history of amphibious warfare; would need to mount an assault larger than that of D-Day across a notoriously treacherous stretch of water 4 times as wide that’s surrounded by Japan, South Korea, and the Philippines and patrolled by the US Navy. With (currently) no fleet big enough to do that role, and limited amounts of large transport aircraft capable of airlifting enough airborne troops. and as if that wasn’t enough to be getting on with, there are just a couple of landing spots suitable on Taiwan as it’s coastline is inhospitably rocky.

    I think they’ve probably looked at how well it’s going in Ukraine (where the Russians literally had to just step over a land border) and quietly put back on the shelf any plans they may have had for invasion.

    Premier Icon timba
    Free Member

    Wendy Sherman, the US Deputy Secretary of State, is starting a tour of islands in the Pacific. She’s commemorating WW2 battles with Japan in the Solomon Islands as well as visiting Samoa and Tonga.
    China has been actively increasing its influence here, falling out with Australia, and has a security pact with the Solomon Islands. Western navies have been exercising their right of navigation for some time so expect some tension here too

    Premier Icon bennyboy1
    Free Member

    The Chinese Communist Party will hold its 20th party Congress in October where the leader will be voted in. In all likelihood it’ll remain Xi Jinpin but all being told things aren’t exactly great for him at the moment and he does seem to be facing increasing internal pressures.

    The Pelosi visit was a poke in the eye to Jinping and in the lead up to the Congress it’s the last thing he needed. We now have a frankly ridiculous Chineze over reaction to reassert power and they’ve given oxygen to Pelosi’s visit.

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Full Member

    If China and America go to war, we pretty much all die, mate.

    That’s the reality. The 2 of them should stay the hell away from this kinda patter. And Pelosi should be heavily criticised.

    As ever, where does pacification end and defence of an innocent country facing an aggressor who won’t stop with just Taiwan start?

    It’s an impossible choice.

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