Leaked documents suggest Taiwan is "highly vulnerable" to Chinese attack

 April 17, 2023

Massachusetts Air National Guardsman Jack Teixeira made headlines last week when he was arrested for allegedly leaking classified documents on Discord.

In what may be cause for panic, the Washington Post reported that some of the material shows Taiwan is "highly vulnerable to Chinese air attack."

Concerns about Taiwanese readiness

Among the revelations are that Taiwanese officials have expressed skepticism over their country's ability to "accurately detect missile launches" from China.

Also troubling is that just a little over half of Taiwan’s military aircraft appear to be mission capable. What's more, it's been estimated that moving jets to shelters could take upwards of a week.

All of this raises troubling questions over how Taiwan would fare should it face an onslaught from the mainland and suggests that China could be more successful in establishing air supremacy than Russia has been in Ukraine.

The information comes in the wake of Chinese military exercises earlier this month which were accompanied by belligerent rhetoric towards Taiwan.

China says it is "ready to fight"

The New York Post reported on April 11 that China's communist regime said it is "ready to fight" after "combat readiness patrols" involving naval and air assets were used to simulate sealing off Taiwan.

"The theater’s troops are ready to fight at all times and can fight at any time to resolutely smash any form of 'Taiwan independence' and foreign interference attempts," a statement from the Chinese government was quoted as saying.

The Post noted that a similar series of exercises were carried out by China last year following a visit by then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to Taiwan.

Tension over meeting between Taiwanese president and House speaker

This included missile strikes on targets in waters around Taiwan as well as sending warships and warplanes over the median line of the Taiwan Strait.

What's more, China imposed a travel ban and financial sanctions on anyone tied to Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen’s recent meeting with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.

Kuo Yu-jen is a defense studies expert and director of the Institute for National Policy Research in Taiwan who criticized the move.

"China wants to use any increase of diplomatic interactions between the US and Taiwan as an excuse to train its military," he told the Post.

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