The US is telling Taiwan to “watch the war in Ukraine closely”, claiming “many civilians in Taiwan are expressing a greater desire to learn how they can play a role in defending their island and resisting Chinese forces, but it’s not yet clear how far the Taiwanese military will go to help prepare the civilian population”. Writes Drago Bosnic
As proxy conflicts around the world rage on, America is poised to continue proliferating further instability across the globe, particularly in the vicinity of near-peer adversaries, Russia and China, neither of which want escalation, as they need peace and stability to fulfill their development goals.
Washington DC (and lately Brussels as well) is determined to prevent that and force the (Eur)Asian giants to bleed cash and resources on new weapons, which in turn helps drive demand from America’s massive Military-Industrial Complex.
In the last 30+ years, the imperialist thalassocracy has tried to redefine its role, going from a self-styled “sole superpower” and “global policeman” to an increasingly isolated great power in decline, losing wars to AK-wielding insurgents in sandals. A string of military failures forced America to rethink its policy of “strategic containment”. Unwilling (or unable) to directly engage even smaller regional powers, the US has relegated most of its interventionist policies to numerous client states, whose sole purpose is to harass US rivals, be it China, Russia, Iran, Syria, etc. America’s role is to provide weapons, logistics, critical information, particularly its extensive ISR (intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance) capabilities, etc.
The vassals are to do all the dirty work, including getting killed or maimed for the imperial metropole. To do this more effectively, they need weapons. One such client entity is Taiwan, China’s breakaway island in the increasingly contested Asia-Pacific region. In recent years, Taipei has been forced to play a sort of (geo)political zigzag game, where the US would promise to supply weapons, mostly outdated, despite the island’s requests for modern systems, and then either reduce the order or outright cancel it. While America is trying to portray this as an attempt to “reduce the risk of escalation”, the excuse can only be described as comically disingenuous. If the US really wanted to avoid escalation, it would’ve never promised any arms shipments in the first place. The more practical reason is America’s wish to enrich its Military-Industrial Complex while getting rid of rusty tanks, howitzers, jets, etc.
Taiwan expressed interest in the MH-60R “Seahawk”, an anti-submarine version of the “Blackhawk” helicopter. However, the US refused, claiming they are “too expensive” and “fine for peacetime operations, but would not survive an all-out assault from the mainland”. Instead, Taipei is being told to “learn from Ukraine and invest in smaller, mobile systems such as drone swarms, ‘Stinger’ and ‘Javelin’ missiles, which are less vulnerable to China’s advanced weapons”. Taipei officials regularly express frustration due to delays and cancelations of US weapons deliveries. M109A6 “Paladin” self-propelled howitzers and FIM-92 “Stinger” MANPADS orders are being held up “due to a crowded production line”, as the US is now trying to arm both the Kiev and Taipei regimes.
Reportedly, Washington DC is urging Taiwan to invest in “more cost-efficient capabilities” such as “command and control systems, ISR, air defenses, and naval sea mines”. America also suggested the M142 HIMARS MLRS for “a similar capability with a faster delivery schedule”. The US insists Taiwan needs “more asymmetrical capabilities”.
“These are not regular times. If you’re going to spend money, it should be on naval sea mines and anti-ship missiles. These are the kinds of things that we have indicated to industry and to Taiwan. President Tsai gets it,” an unnamed US official told Politico.
The US is telling Taiwan to “watch the war in Ukraine closely”, claiming “many civilians in Taiwan are expressing a greater desire to learn how they can play a role in defending their island and resisting Chinese forces, but it’s not yet clear how far the Taiwanese military will go to help prepare the civilian population”. Such statements clearly show America wants to galvanize civilians in vassal entities to wage wars against its rivals, regardless of the consequences, as Taiwan obviously cannot hope to win against China’s vastly superior forces.
Another strategic hurdle is the looming uncertainty of what the US is capable and willing to do to assist Taiwan in case of a conflict. Unlike Ukraine, which has an extensive land border with NATO, Taiwan is far away, making it incomparably more difficult to supply its forces or even provide ISR capabilities on a scale similar to Ukraine. Additionally, the US claims a Chinese naval blockade is also a possibility. Even if it had any forces in the vicinity in such a scenario, America wouldn’t be able to break through without starting a war with nuclear-armed China. It’s quite unclear how the US would explain to its population they should risk a world-ending conflict with China just so it could keep controlling a Chinese breakaway island 11,000 from America’s shores.
“We’re going to have a lot of challenges if China decides to blockade the island,” the US official said. “People have to start thinking hard… …The trickiest part may be figuring out how to help Taiwan prepare without leaving Beijing feeling as if it must react. We could provoke the attack that we’re seeking to deter,” he concluded.
Such schizophrenic statements clearly indicate that the US foreign policy is a runaway train which nobody in the imperialist thalassocracy’s establishment is trying to stop. On the contrary, it seems whoever is at the helm is speeding up. This is also a clear message to populations in America’s satellite states – “Be ready to die fighting when we decide to sacrifice you for ‘freedom and democracy’, ‘rules-based international order’ and ‘the greater good.'”
Drago Bosnic, independent geopolitical and military analyst.
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