China’s Troop Rehearsal for Coastal Invasion of Taiwan Amid Rising Tensions

China’s Troop Rehearsal for Coastal Invasion of Taiwan Amid Rising Tensions

China’s People’s Liberation Army’s Eastern Theatre Command, responsible for monitoring the Taiwan Strait, recently released a video depicting what seems to be a practice session for a coastal invasion of Taiwan.

The video, shared on WeChat, showcases soldiers storming beaches and maneuvering tanks along dirt roads, all set to a Chinese ballad.

While not explicitly mentioning Taiwan, the Eastern Theatre Command frequently conducts military drills in the Taiwan Strait.

The video’s lyrics and WeChat post included evocative phrases like ‘go over the city gate and the high wall’ and ‘no matter how dark it is, don’t be afraid… chase and win the warmest years’.

The Chinese Communist Party sees Taiwan as a renegade province to be reclaimed by force, though Taiwan’s Democratic Progressive Party asserts its self-governance and democratic status.

In a parallel development, Russia and China have initiated joint naval exercises in the Pacific Ocean, as reported by Moscow’s defense ministry.

A video from the Russian state news agency TASS showcased a fleet of nine vessels in formation, participating in various exercises including refueling at sea and cargo transfer.

These exercises cover over 6,400 nautical miles and involve anti-submarine drills, air strike defense, sea rescue training, and helicopter landing practice.

This collaboration between the Russian Navy and China’s People’s Liberation Army Navy underscores the growing alignment between the two nations, partly driven by Russia’s strained relationship with Western governments due to the conflict in Ukraine.

As tensions continue to escalate, Taiwan also conducted its own military and civilian preparedness drills.

The Han Kuang defense drills, held annually since 1984, witnessed heightened intensity this year.

China demonstrated its military might by sending aircraft and navy vessels around the island, with some crossing the Taiwan Strait’s midline.

These drills encompass not only the military but also the civilian population, with residents participating in air defense exercises aimed at enhancing preparedness for missile attacks.

Amid the backdrop of these developments, Taiwan faces the challenge of maintaining its defense capabilities against China’s larger and more resource-rich military.

While China’s President Xi Jinping has expressed the intention to reclaim Taiwan, military experts note that Beijing might be cautious about triggering a war due to potential economic and geopolitical consequences.

CIA Director William Burns suggested that Xi had instructed the Chinese military to be prepared for an invasion by 2027, but this doesn’t necessarily indicate an imminent attack.

For China, engaging in a military operation could lead to condemnation from Western trading partners and potential military responses, particularly from the United States.

Despite the saber-rattling, uncertainties and complexities of the situation suggest that the path to a military operation is far from straightforward.