The Air Defense Missile Command is to be merged with the air force next month, a move expected to enhance and streamline the nation’s air defense command system.
The merger is to take effect on Wednesday — with command, now under the management of the Ministry of National Defense’s General Staff Headquarters — to be put under the purview of the air force, military sources said.
With Patriot Advanced Capability-3 missile systems, Tien Kung III surface-to-air missile systems and Hawk anti-aircraft missiles, the command is responsible for medium-to-long-range air defense and controls tactical weapons, such as Hsiung Feng IIE cruise missiles.
The command is reportedly to merge with the Air Defense Artillery Command by the end of the year to streamline the chain of command and augment operational efficiency.
The Air Defense Artillery Command has the “Skyguard” short-range air defense system — with AIM-7 Sparrow surface-to-air missiles — and the Antelope air defense system with batteries of Tien Chien-I missiles.
To counter China’s advanced missile threat, the command is to become a top military unit akin to the three branches of the military. The Air Defense Missile Command is a brigade-level unit led by a major general. Following the merger, it will be a corps-level unit led by a lieutenant general.
The reorganization and merger are to counter China’s deployment of more than 1,400 missiles against Taiwan and are in response to a doctrinal shift in the nation’s defense strategy from “effective deterrence” to “multiple deterrence.”
The merger is the latest in a series of missile unit reorganizations.
The ministry established the first missile batteries in 1959 under the army when the government acquired the US-made Nike-Hercules surface-to-air missile. The missile command was established in 1979.
In 2004, the ministry merged the navy’s Hai Feng Shore Based Anti-ship Missile Squadron with the missile command and put it under the ministry’s General Staff Headquarters.
In 2006, the Hai Feng squadron was returned to the navy and the missile command’s air defense troops were transferred to the air force.
Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) is aware that Beijing’s treatment of Hong Kong has weakened any possible sentiment for a “one country, two systems” arrangement for Taiwan, and has instructed Chinese Communist Party (CCP) politburo member Wang Huning (王滬寧) to develop new ways of defining cross-strait relations, Japanese news magazine Nikkei Asia reported on Thursday. A former professor of international politics at Fu Dan University, Wang is expected to develop a dialogue that could serve as the foundation for cross-strait unification, and Xi plans to use the framework to support a fourth term as president, Nikkei Asia quoted an anonymous source
LUCKY DATE: The man picked the 10th ‘Super Red Envelope’ in a lottery store in Taoyuan’s Jhongli because he broke up with his girlfriend on Jan. 10 A man who recently broke up with his girlfriend won a NT$1 million (US$32,929) prize in the “NT$20 million Super Red Envelope” lottery after picking a card based on the date of their breakup, Taiwan Lottery Co said yesterday. The man, in his 20s, bought the 10th ticket at a lottery store in Taoyuan’s Jhongli District (中壢), because he broke up with his girlfriend on Jan. 10, the store owner told the lottery company. The “Super Red Envelope” lottery was a limited offering by the company during the Lunar New Year holiday, which ended yesterday. The cards, which cost NT$2,000 each, came with
TOURISM BOOST: The transportation system could help attract more visitors to the area, as the line is to connect multiple cultural sites, a city councilor said Residents in New Taipei City’s Ankeng District (安坑) said the local light rail system might have a positive influence, but raised questions about its practicality. The Ankeng light rail system, which is to commence operations after the Lunar New Year holiday, would cut travel time for commuters from Ankeng to downtown Taipei or New Taipei City by 15 to 20 minutes, the city government said. According to the initial plan, there would be one train every 15 minutes during peak time and additional interval trains would run between the densely populated Ankang Station (安康) and Shisizhang Station (十 四張). To encourage people to
CHAMPION TREES: The team used light detection and ranging imaging to locate the tree, and found that it measured a height of 84.1m and had a girth of 8.5m A team committed to finding the tallest trees in the nation yesterday said that an 84.1m tall Taiwania cryptomerioides tree had been named the tallest tree in Taiwan and East Asia. The Taiwan Champion Trees, a team consisting of researchers from the Council of Agriculture’s Taiwan Forestry Research Institute and National Cheng Kung University (NCKU), in June last year used light detection and ranging (LiDAR) imaging to find the giant tree, numbered 55214, upstream of the Daan River (大安溪). A 20-member expedition team led by Rebecca Hsu (徐嘉君), an assistant researcher at the Taiwan Forestry Research Institute, set out to find the