Hard Times Ahead for Taiwan
October was very nerve-wracking for Taiwan. It began on October 1 when the People’s Republic of China (PRC) “celebrated” the anniversary of the Communist Party by flying fighter jets into Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone. However, they did remain outside the nation’s claimed airspace. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) continued the harassment for four days, and it involved up to 150 military flights.
Since the 1949 Communist Revolution, the PRC has regarded Taiwan as a breakaway province, partly because the island became the new home to tens of thousands of refugees from the new communist state. The issue has been a bone of contention between the PRC and Taiwan, a close U.S. ally.
China has tested the resolve of the U.S. on the matter a number of times in the past. China and the U.S. came close to a fight in 1996 when China held military exercises which involved firing missiles as close as 20 miles from Taiwan’s coast. China had no aircraft carriers at the time, and the U.S. was ready to defend its ally. The PRC retreated, but it was a turning point. From then, the Chinese were determined to upgrade their military.
Though the PRC has made great strides in this direction, the only way they could defeat the U.S. at sea would be if the U.S Navy was delayed.
Within the last year, PRC leaders, including President Xi Jinping, have stated that the U.S. is becoming weaker, evidenced by the messy withdrawal from Afghanistan. They note the massive division in the U.S. as clear evidence of weakness, and they have doubts that the U.S. would use force if they took over Taiwan. They believe that China is in the process of replacing the U.S. as the world’s most powerful nation.
Certainly, a takeover of Taiwan would be very popular in the PRC. They dealt harshly with Hong Kong, and bringing Taiwan under China’s rule would, in their view, unite the Chinese world. Despite their perception of the U.S. as weakening, few would expect the PRC to do such a thing for at least a couple of more years.
Taiwan’s president, Tsai Ing-wen, reminds the world that an attack on Taiwan would bring catastrophic consequences to East Asia’s security and economy.
If The PRC engulfed Taiwan, it would have other serious negative consequences for the Chinese Church. The Taiwanese have been a significant bastion of Chinese mission efforts for decades. If their church had to go underground like the situation in the PRC, it would be tragic.
The Guardian, Taiwan’s President Warns of ‘Catastrophic Consequences’ If Island Falls to China. October 5, 2021.
Wall Street Journal, Will America Come to Taiwan’s Defense? October 12, 2021
National Review, If China attacks Taiwan. October 11, 2021
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