Fri, May 17, 2013 - Page 8 News List

Be wary of Beijing in Manila row

By Paul Lin 林保華

Taiwan needs to be prepared to fight on two fronts. It will also need to have both its navy and air force ready to deal with any unforeseen developments. The navy drills are not merely a military matter, there is a political element to them too. The National Security Council must not let its guard down and must be prepared to rise to the occasion, especially given the shortcomings in Ma’s leadership.

Retired ROC Air Force general Hsia Ying-chou (夏瀛洲) allegedly told a gathering of retired military officers during a visit to China in 2011 that there should be no distinction between the ROC Army and the PLA, as both are “China’s army.” Hsia is in China right now. One could imagine that he is sitting down at the PLA General Staff Headquarters, exploring the PLA’s options. After all, he knows how the ROC military works and even taught some of Taiwan’s current stock of generals and military commanders. This is yet another factor that the nation’s armed forces need to bear in mind: They should think about varying their approaches to avoid being caught on the back foot.

Paul Lin is a political commentator.

Translated by Paul Cooper

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