Tycoon Robert Tsao (曹興誠) has pledged funding for the domestic production of 1 million combat drones to defend Taiwan in the event of military conflict with China.
In an interview published by the Financial Times on Wednesday, Tsao said that he had spoken with drone manufacturers in Taiwan about setting up an industry alliance to research and develop combat drones at a lower cost.
The 1 million drones would be armed and the plan is to have them operational in the next two to three years, he said in the interview.
Photo: screen grab from Hsiao-chun Taiwan PLUS
The drones would be on the front line in Taiwan’s defense if the Chinese military were to launch an amphibious assault, he said, adding that their weapons would target enemy troops and Chinese warships if they tried to land on Taiwan’s beaches.
Tsao, who founded semiconductor maker United Microelectronics Corp (UMC), on Sept. 1 said that he would donate NT$3 billion (US$94.7 million) to bolster Taiwan’s defense against the threat of a Chinese military invasion.
Among Tsao’s plans were NT$600 million to fund the Kuma Academy to set up local militia units — or “black bear warriors” — training them in combat tactics, guerrilla warfare, cognitive warfare and first aid.
He also promised NT$400 million to train 300,000 “sharpshooters” as another line of defense against Chinese troops.
In a separate interview with Deutsche Welle published on Wednesday, Tsao said that when he conducted UMC business in China, he told top Chinese government officials that “talk of ‘one country, two systems’ is a plot to deceive” Taiwanese.
“Beijing’s leadership touted the ‘one country, two systems’ formula for Taiwan, but they believed that the Republic of China was dead, so the rhetoric was essentially directed at a ‘ghost,’” he said.
China pushed through an extradition law for Hong Kong in 2019 designed to allow suspects to be prosecuted in mainland China, prompting vehement protests among Hong Kongers, he said.
The law was ultimately not implemented.
“Beijing’s leaders saw the protests as riots against Chinese authority,” he said. “At that time, I had dinner with a top Chinese official. He told me the way to proceed was to hire hooligans to work with police officers to beat up protesters, then Hong Kongers would not defy the Chinese government.”
“So this was done,” he said. “On July 21, 2019, there was the Yuen Long attack, during which police deployed hooligans with batons and clubs who indiscriminately assaulted protesters.”
“Before that, I did not believe they would do such a thing,” Tsao said.
“Seeing what happened in Hong Kong and the violent suppression of the people was shocking,” he said. “I felt ashamed to have kept company” with the Chinese officals.
“It showed the true face of the Chinese Communist Party, a hooligan regime conducting violence against ordinary people,” he said. “If it cannot get its way, its solution is to hire hooligans to beat people up.”
“People in Hong Kong used peaceful means at street events to express their views, but the Chinese government used cruel means of suppression, including beatings. It really made me angry. So I decided to never go to China, Hong Kong or Macau again,” he said.
“Taiwanese must watch out,” he said. “If we get into such a situation, then it will be too late, there is no way back to freedom and democracy.”
China’s nationalism defies the progress of civilization, while Taiwan has advanced with civilization, “as Taiwan values reason, science, progress, peace, human rights, the rule of law and democracy,” he said. “That is why we cannot be unified with China.”
EVA Airways was ranked the eighth-best airline in the world for this year, the only Taiwanese carrier to make it into the top 25 Airline Excellence Awards this year, aviation reviews Web site AirlineRatings.com said on Wednesday. AirlineRatings.com has a seven-star rating system to evaluate more than 360 airlines around the world every year, EVA Airways said in a statement on Thursday. “We are delighted that efforts by the entire EVA staff have been recognized by Airline Ratings,” EVA Airways president Clay Sun (孫嘉明) said in the release. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the company identified and adopted services and procedures that enhance and
A promotional event for the launch of a drinks store led to police questioning a 26-year-old woman surnamed Chang (張), the Taichung Police Department said yesterday. Police said that they questioned Chang and forwarded the case to prosecutors, accusing her of producing, distributing, broadcasting or selling pornography. Police said she faces charges related to the alleged distribution of indecent photographs on Twitter and using overtly sexual innuendos to promote the store on Monday night. Officers stumbled upon the content during a routine Internet “patrol.” Chang faces a prison sentence of up to two years and up to a NT$90,000 fine if found guilty
MORE WARNINGS: If the US company does not clarify and solve issues with its frozen berries, the FDA might extend an import suspension implemented last month, it said The Kaohsiung Department of Health yesterday said it fined Costco NT$4.5 million (US$146,265) over contaminated frozen strawberries, while the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said that although the US company had filed an improvement plan, an import suspension on frozen berries could remain. Three types of frozen berry products imported and sold by Costco have tested positive for the hepatitis A virus since April. The Kaohsiung health department previously fined Costco NT$300,000 for not providing the sales list of a contaminated batch of Kirkland Signature Three Berry Blend imported from Chile, in contravention of the Communicable Disease Control Act (傳染病防治法). It later
‘NEGLIGENCE’: After reporting the incident, her superior allegedly asked her why she did not scream, which was an inappropriate attempt to ignore the allegations, critics said An accusation of sexual harassment led to the resignation of a top Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) official, while President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has called for a thorough investigation into the incident involving a contractor. Vice President and DPP Chairman William Lai (賴清德) yesterday said he approved the resignation of DPP deputy secretary-general Hsu Chia-tien (許嘉恬), who headed the party’s Women’s Development Department when the alleged incident happened in September last year. “Gender equality is among our party’s core values, that we have strived for and advanced along with Taiwanese society,” Lai said. “The DPP did not handle it appropriately at the time,