Experts yesterday said the Executive Yuan and National Security Council (NSC) should step up their public support for the NT$480 billion (US$15.2 billion) arms bill since the budget has been blocked in the legislature.
"On the proposed three-item arms purchase from the US, I think the NSC has neglected its duty," said Lo Chih-cheng (
The military has been carrying the burden of telling the public why the country needs the arms, but the military's duty is to defend the country, not to communicate with the public, he added.
"If we merely rely on the Ministry of National Defense (MND), the budget will never be approved," he added.
The NSC should speak to the public about the big picture of national security, and its arguments would have a better chance of winning public support, he said.
Alexander Huang (
Before Taiwan democratized, the MND could obtain what it liked with little public input, Huang said. But now any large military purchase requires public support.
He said the NSC is the president's private consultative body, and that it would be improper for them to address the public. The Executive Yuan should take up that role, he added.
Ma Chen-kun (
Chung Chien (
He added that the MND's recent assessment of it and the People's Liberation Army's (PLA) capabilities made preposterous claims, such as saying that the military could use advanced Patriot missiles to hit the PLA's cruise missiles with a high interception rate, or claiming that the PLA will possess its first aircraft carrier in five years.
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