China calls Taiwan escalation an ‘unmistakable declaration of sovereignty’

FPI / October 7, 2021


China on Oct. 4 carried out its largest incursion inside Taiwan’s air defense zone to date, sending 58 warplanes, including 12 nuclear-capable bombers, the Taiwanese Defense Ministry said.

In this photo released by the Taiwan Presidential Office, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, center, speaks with military personnel near aircraft parked on a highway in Jiadong, Taiwan on Sept. 15.

The Oct. 4 flights bring the total aircraft flying into the air defense zone since late last month to 136 and represent a major People’s Liberation Army (PLA) escalation of tensions that the propaganda outlet Global Times, the Chinese Communist Party newspaper, characterized as “a clear and unmistakable declaration of China’s sovereignty over the island.”

Richard Fisher, a Chinese military affairs analyst with the International Assessment and Strategy Center and contributing editor to Geostrategy-Direct, said the PLA “is barely getting started with its military coercion. It should be expected that future exercises will include multiple aircraft carriers supporting simultaneous amphibious assaults, to include use of anti-ship ballistic missiles and perhaps anti-satellite demonstrations.”

“The Chinese Communist Party is using this crude military pressure as part of an orchestra of coercion, [one] that includes a massive insidious propaganda global political campaign to erase any recognition of a free Taiwan and the weaponization of its political, economic and cultural relations with Taiwan,” Fisher added.

Fisher said he thinks Beijing’s intimidation efforts will only increase as supreme leader Xi Jinping has become emboldened after sustaining few international consequences over his aggressive clampdown in Hong Kong and other internal places.

Chinese state media have pointed to the disastrous U.S. military withdrawal from Afghanistan as a sign that the Biden administration would not come to the aid of its unofficial ally Taiwan.

China has told Taiwanese leaders that the United States would abandon them in ways similar to the U.S.-backed government in Afghanistan, which fell to the Taliban militia in 11 days.

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