Taiwan Holds Live-Fire War-Drills Amid Fears Of China Invasion

As the Trump administration has maintained its focus on the North Korean threat, there is another, potentially more severe, crisis unfolding in the Taiwan Strait between China and Taiwan.

Relations between China and Taiwan have deteriorated since President Tsai Ing-wen took office in May 2016, Beijing cut off communications with Taipei, stripped it of its democratic allies, and even conducted naval and air operations around the island in a show of force to ensure the island had minimal participation with international organizations.

In 2017, the Trump administration signaled the traditional U.S. commitment to Taiwan in multiple gestures. For instance, the president allowed for a massive $1.42 billion arms deal, which infuriated Beijing. Another gesture by the Trump was Taipei’s entry into the Global Entry, a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) program that allows expedited clearance for pre-approved travelers to the U.S.

While Taiwan shifted closer to the United States in 2017, Chinese diplomat Li Kexin informed U.S. officials in early December that the moment one of its warships visits Taiwan, Beijing will launch an invasion on the island.

Tensions have once again deteriorated this week as Chinese airlines have canceled hundreds of flights to Taiwan as disputes over aviation routes continue. Two major carriers, China Eastern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines, announced Tuesday they canceled the flights because Taiwan’s government refused to approve them.

In conjunction with hundreds of canceled flights before the Lunar New Year, Taiwan troops staged a massive live-fire war drill to simulate an invasion by China on Tuesday.

The military simulated an attack on the island using reconnaissance aircrafts to surveil incoming warships, followed by tanks firing rounds at the “mimicked enemy” landing around the Port of Hualien in eastern Taiwan.

In the air, attack helicopters and F-16 fighter jets launched assaults, supporting ground troops who battled the simulated enemy wearing red helmets.

Taiwan’s ministry did not outright define who the simulated invasion was by, but it is pretty clear with the chart below who that is.

Further, the ministry said the annual drill was to “show determination to safeguard peace in the Taiwan Strait and national security.”

The Taiwan Strait is the waterway that divides the island from China.

According to the AFP,

Cross-strait relations have turned frosty since the inauguration of Tsai, who refuses to acknowledge self-ruling, democratic Taiwan is part of “one China.” The drill on Tuesday takes place annually prior to Lunar New Year holiday — which lands in mid-February this year — as a way to boost public confidence in Taiwan’s defence capabilities.  

“Our combat readiness has no holidays,” Huang Kai-sen, a Taiwanese lieutenant general, told AFP.

“In order for our citizens to feel safe during the Chinese New Year, we are standing by and on guard 24 hours a day,” he added. 


Anonymous (not verified) Wed, 01/31/2018 - 22:17 Permalink

Problem with a war with China is that your blood lust wears off in 30 minutes, and you need to go kill more ... wait ... is that a problem?

Laowei Gweilo CNONC Wed, 01/31/2018 - 22:58 Permalink

Pretty much.... 

Plus, TW ain't ever going to war with China.

This is just sabre rattling by the latest President to try appease nationalists and improve her popularity because it's tanked in the last year to about 1/3rd. She's less popular in TW than Trump is in the US.

Aaaaaand whaaaaaat do politcians in any country do when they're unpopular?


In reply to by CNONC

Dindu Nuffins Anonymous (not verified) Thu, 02/01/2018 - 00:50 Permalink

As the sage Mary Poppins once opined, "A spoonful of countersemitism makes the medicine go down... the medicine go down... the medicine go down... in the most delightful way!"

Also, until you study the disaster of China's invasion of Vietnam after the Americans chewed the place up for a dozen years, you cannot be prepared to understand how corrupt, incompetent and ineffective the Chicoms are at warfare. They only won against the nationalists because they let the nationalists fight the Japanese alone (and because they had more Jews, it must be allowed. Seriously. Israel Epstein and his crew.)


A war between Taiwan and China would be a bloodbath... for the mainlanders.

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

BrownCoat Guderian Thu, 02/01/2018 - 04:14 Permalink

From the article: "While Taiwan shifted closer to the United States in 2017, Chinese diplomat Li Kexin informed U.S. officials in early December that the moment one of its warships visits Taiwan, Beijing will launch an invasion on the island."

I find it hard to believe China would be so explicit with their intentions.

It seems like a rather trivial event for China to draw a 'red line' over.

Well, if the Nork FatBoy gets out of line, the US won't need a false flag operation. The US can control when war starts... assuming the Chinese diplomat wasn't lying and China hasn't reconsidered its intimidating statement.

In reply to by Guderian

Koba the Dread Wed, 01/31/2018 - 22:39 Permalink

"Taiwan Holds Live-Fire War-Drills Amid Fears Of China Invasion" That's either the stupidest headline I've seen this week (and I've seen some doozies) or the Taiwanese are the stupidest people in the world. Sure, PROC sees Taiwan as a legitimate part of China. But so did the British see the US in that light as late as the 1870s.

I'm sure Britain is now delighted to not have to wrangle 330,000,000 psychotic Americans. I'm sure China is happy enough in its good relations with Taiwan to not need "invade" the island. Having driven the Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, French and British land sharks out of Asia, everyone can take a breather while America self-destructs into debt idiocy, menstrually stained clothing and waiting for Jeff Sessions to wake up from his twenty-year nap. Being a satellite state of China is probably better than being America's whore, don't you think?

Dr. Bonzo Wed, 01/31/2018 - 22:42 Permalink

Yeaaaaaah, practice riding high in that turret. See how that works out for ya. Make sure your mom doesn't catch ya doin that shit. She might not like it.


Hyjinx Wed, 01/31/2018 - 22:58 Permalink

The best "deal" to make with China would be as follows:

End the Kim regime in North Korea and denuke it; install a neutral/sane puppet China likes and the US will evacuate South Korea.  Everyone wins.  If they don't want that say we might build the biggest military installation they have ever seen on Taiwan, complete with lots of shore-to-ship missiles and missile defense systems.

Hongcha Wed, 01/31/2018 - 22:58 Permalink

Bang bang boom boom ... FFS, the Taiwanese have been conducting these exercises for seventy years.  Another anus-puckering ZH headline ... if you are a mouth breathing idiot or a typical middle-class Amerikan, that is ...

"War is God's way of teaching geography to Americans."   -- Ambrose Bierce.

Demologos TGF Texas Thu, 02/01/2018 - 00:06 Permalink

Ambrose Bierce was no "pussy". Read some of his stories on the civil war. He saw the carnage first hand and his writing brings a human dimension to it all.

One story tells about a soldier who was assigned to watch a road for enemy activity. He falls asleep and wakes up to see an enemy officer on horseback at the edge of the road looking down into the valley where the soldier's unit was encamped. It takes awhile before the soldier can make out the officer in the dim light. He is taking aim at the officer then realizes that it is his father. He can't shoot his own father, and he can't let his father give away his unit's presence. So he shoots the horse out from under his father who then falls off of the cliff to his death.


In reply to by TGF Texas

Scanderbeg Wed, 01/31/2018 - 23:03 Permalink

Chicomms have neither naval superiority or air superiority let alone any practical experience in amphibious assaults.

Their equipment is trash nor do they possess any significant numerical advantage in modern attack submarines, aircraft or destroyers. Their much hyped surface based anti ship missiles probably can't hit a barn on land let alone a carrier moving at full speed at such long distances. Their naval aviation is in it's infancy and they have one refurbished bootleg ramp carrier from Ukraine. Any missile sites along with the shore based artillery could also be vaporized in a day. The Chinese Air Force might last a couple hours if they were lucky. 

I don't favor war over Taiwan but this is just bluffing on their part in my opinion. 

If they try a conventional war with the U.S over Taiwan they will get BTFO. Not to mention their entire economy depends on America and most countries in the region would likely back the U.S.

Demologos Scanderbeg Thu, 02/01/2018 - 00:37 Permalink

100% correct. Taiwan is one of the most heavily fortified islands in the world. It would be suicidal for the mainland Chinese to mount an invasion. I would guess that the exercises are more about domestic consumption. China wants to make the One Road One Belt (OBOR) initiative work. They need Taiwan to participate and aren't interested in doing that by force. It is in the interest of those who want to sabotage OBOR to gin up tension in the region. So exercise away. Everyone is exercising these days; the Norks, NATO, Ukraine, Russia, and more.

In reply to by Scanderbeg

expatch Thu, 02/01/2018 - 01:23 Permalink

Was just in Taiwan a few weeks ago, and probed around on this topic out of interest. Folks there did not seem worried in the least that China would ever do anything. They were pretty much completely westernized in their thinking and attitudes, nothing like mainland China at all. It's as if a different culture has evolved there over the last 70 years. Based on what we can see in China's 'soft' takeover in Hong Kong, Macau, the new islands; they play a long game. It doesn't feel like whatever designs they have on Taiwan would kick off with an invasion. More like trade treaties, joint projects, monetary agreements, etc. Their pattern has been to get a whole generation of people used to the idea of China, and slowly put their pieces into place.

My $.02

DEMIZEN Thu, 02/01/2018 - 06:41 Permalink

its the olympics time.

2008 beijing  russia --->  georgia

2014 sochi  usa ----> ukraine

                   russia ---> crimea


china --> taiwan?

usa ---> nk ?

russia --> ?

SunRise Thu, 02/01/2018 - 08:07 Permalink

First Picture:  The guy in the back is positioned for live-firing 6 inches over the head of the guy in front?  So, a bullet hits the dirt, peppering the face of the prone guy in the front and he instinctively jumps up just as the guy in the back squeezes off a 3-round burst?

Soph Thu, 02/01/2018 - 09:26 Permalink

I admire their tenacity, but unfortunately Taiwan is screwed once China decides to roll in there (notice it's not an "if", but a "when").

Not a snowflakes chance in hell any western power will come to their aid against China. There was a time I thought Trump might actually stand up to China, but that's showing itself more and more unlikely.

IronForge Thu, 02/01/2018 - 12:01 Permalink

Game Over.

CHN have prevailed; and now every noteworthy Nation-State and Multi-national Organization deal directly with CHN/CHY.

TWNese in the USA and in JPN may try to stir things up (e.g., Senkaku / Daidou); but some of them are so spiteful and racist, everyone else are despising them.  Racketeering Factions do flourish in SoCal. 

I'm hope to do some future business in CHN.  TWN/HKG/SGP based entities have harassed me at work, etc. based on that.  Sad to say; but Mainlanders who come here for school and business tend to be much nicer overall.  

As for any Invasions? If TWN provoke too far, It will most likely occur.  No contest - only a quick hop for Paratroopers and a Morning Excursion for Assault Ships and Fighter-Bombers.

Sorry to say; but A-Holes here truly exposed the Epic Fail of the Desperate Policies to me.  CHN aren't full of Angels and Rainbows  ;  but I see potential for Hope and Goodwill.