There are many experts who believe China’s timetable for a Taiwan invasion is accelerating, and the U.S. is responding by increasing its presence on the island nation.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the U.S. plans to dramatically increase its current number of 30 troops to anywhere from 100 to 200 in the coming months. This will result in an increase in the current training program the Pentagon has undertaken but kept under wraps.
The U.S. has been careful to assist Taipei while avoiding antagonizing Beijing for the past several years. Troops stationed in Taiwan include special operations forces and Marines, though the number has fluctuated recently.
China’s surging military power is unquestionably the reason behind what will be the largest U.S. force on Taiwan in decades. The two countries have forged closer bonds to ward off the pending communist Chinese threat.
The US is massively expanding its training program in Taiwan from 30 to 100-200 US soldiers stationed on the island in the coming months as it seeks to rapidly build up Taiwan's military before the CCP attacks. https://t.co/JiPYtyZncS
— CasualtiesOfTheDay 🇺🇦 (@Ayei_Eloheichem) February 24, 2023
On Thursday, Defense Department spokesperson Lt. Col. Marty Meiners emphasized the military’s “support for and defense relationship with Taiwan remains aligned against the current threat posed by the People’s Republic of China.”
He added, “Our commitment to Taiwan is rock-solid and contributes to the maintenance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and within the region.”
The additional troops being sent to Taiwan are expected to expand the training of domestic forces on U.S. weapons systems. They will also instruct on maneuvers to protect the country from a potential Chinese invasion.
Besides the U.S. troop presence on the island, a Taiwanese military contingent is currently training with the Michigan National Guard at Camp Grayling.
The Wall Street Journal quoted officials as saying the military expansion in Taiwan had been planned for months. It predated the spike in tensions after a Chinese spy balloon was allowed to cross U.S. airspace before being shot down off South Carolina.
China has rattled its sabers in recent weeks, sending military vessels and aircraft into Taiwan’s waters and airspace in a provocative manner.
Part of the challenge of troop deployment to China, an official told the Wall Street Journal, is knowing what will actually antagonize Beijing. Washington does not believe that the current levels of involvement by military personnel are enough to push the communist regime to a breaking point.