Things related to our discussion on invading Taiwan

Over the last month, we did something like eleven posts analyzing the possibilities and the ability of China to invade and occupy Taiwan. The summery post is here:
Will China invade Taiwan in the next 20 years? Summation: | Mystics & Statistics (dupuyinstitute.org)

Just spotted a CNN article that is related: US Air Force to send dozens of F-22 fighter jets to the Pacific amid tensions with China

A few highlights:

  1. We are sending 25 F-22s to Guam and Tinian Islands (Northern Marianas).
  2. F-22’s are fifth-generation combat jets. China has 20-24. We have 180 F-22s (and then there are F-35s).
  3. Only about half of the F-22s “…are mission capable at any one time due to maintenance requirements.”
  4. 10 F-15s and 2 C-130Js are also deploying.

I copied the cover picture from the article. 

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Christopher A. Lawrence
Christopher A. Lawrence

Christopher A. Lawrence is a professional historian and military analyst. He is the Executive Director and President of The Dupuy Institute, an organization dedicated to scholarly research and objective analysis of historical data related to armed conflict and the resolution of armed conflict. The Dupuy Institute provides independent, historically-based analyses of lessons learned from modern military experience.
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Mr. Lawrence was the program manager for the Ardennes Campaign Simulation Data Base, the Kursk Data Base, the Modern Insurgency Spread Sheets and for a number of other smaller combat data bases. He has participated in casualty estimation studies (including estimates for Bosnia and Iraq) and studies of air campaign modeling, enemy prisoner of war capture rates, medium weight armor, urban warfare, situational awareness, counterinsurgency and other subjects for the U.S. Army, the Defense Department, the Joint Staff and the U.S. Air Force. He has also directed a number of studies related to the military impact of banning antipersonnel mines for the Joint Staff, Los Alamos National Laboratories and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation.
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His published works include papers and monographs for the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment and the Vietnam Veterans of American Foundation, in addition to over 40 articles written for limited-distribution newsletters and over 60 analytical reports prepared for the Defense Department. He is the author of Kursk: The Battle of Prokhorovka (Aberdeen Books, Sheridan, CO., 2015), America’s Modern Wars: Understanding Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam (Casemate Publishers, Philadelphia & Oxford, 2015), War by Numbers: Understanding Conventional Combat (Potomac Books, Lincoln, NE., 2017) , The Battle of Prokhorovka (Stackpole Books, Guilford, CT., 2019), The Battle for Kyiv (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2023), Aces at Kursk (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024), Hunting Falcon: The Story of WWI German Ace Hans-Joachim Buddecke (Air World, Yorkshire, UK, 2024) and The Siege of Mariupol (Frontline Books, Yorkshire, UK, 2024).
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Mr. Lawrence lives in northern Virginia, near Washington, D.C., with his wife and son.

Articles: 1516

9 Comments

  1. Well…..to quote from the second article: “War is not imminent, despite Xi’s provocation. But Joseph Wu Warned that the Chinese President is under pressure at home and could manufacture a crisis to divert attention.”

    Kind of like Argentina did over Falklands?

    Another article here:

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/world/white-house-puts-china-on-notice/ar-AAP8uyj?ocid=msedgntp

    To quote:
    “A recent survey by the Eurasia Group Foundation (EGF) found that a small plurality of respondents, 42.3 percent, favored the U.S. defending Taiwan militarily, while 41.6 percent were unsure. The views differed slightly based on political parties, with over half of Republicans in favor of the U.S. defending Taiwan, while 39.4 percent of Democrats agreed to come of Taipei’s defense.”

  2. Oh…another article: https://www.cnn.com/2021/10/07/politics/us-submarine-collision-south-china-sea/index.html

    Quote:

    On Wednesday, Taiwan’s defense minister, Chiu Kuo-cheng, said China could be ready to launch a “full-scale” invasion of the island by 2025, adding that “they currently have the ability” to attack, but they would have to “pay a price.”

    So…how should I interpret this?

    1. We are safe until 2025 (meaning they are not ready before then)?
    2. Or….it is going to happen in 2025?

  3. I expect regional governments would have to take the treat seriously. It sounds like China will probably attempt a military takeover in 2025 or thereafter, if the current threats do not succeed in making Taiwan capitulate. Hong Kong was taken over (i.e. the democratic government was shut down) and so there is precedent for a takeover. IMHO it does not sound like an idle threat at all.

    • I do think the threat needs to be taken seriously. I don’t think China will attempt it by 2025. They sort of need a large modern air force capable of contesting the skies with the United States. That they do not have.

  4. More China news:

    https://news.yahoo.com/china-fully-able-invade-taiwan-185429391.html

    “Chiu’s military believe that 2025 will mark the maturity of China’s anti-intervention and blockage capability around the Taiwan Strait…”

    Now….does “anti-intervention and blockade” mean “invasion?”

    Oh, and we do have some presence in Taiwan. Not sure it is very big:

    https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/taiwan-vows-to-defend-freedom-at-all-costs-qkdcmktxj

    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/oct/07/taiwan-us-military-trainers-china

    https://www.reuters.com/world/china/us-troops-rotating-into-taiwan-training-sources-2021-10-07/

    https://www.msn.com/en-xl/northamerica/top-stories/how-us-troops-in-taiwan-add-even-more-fuel-to-the-china-us-tinderbox/ar-AAPhj9n?ocid=BingNewsSearch

    China is calling for U.S. troops to leave:

    https://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2021/10/08/taiwan-China-US-troops-Taiwan/8511633718216/

    Of course, China wants “peaceful reunification”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/chinas-xi-emphasizes-peaceful-reunification-with-taiwan-days-after-record-show-of-force-11633769442

    More assessment:

    https://news.yahoo.com/starting-fire-u-china-enter-150049722.html

    None of this really changes my opinion on the likelihood of an invasion.

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