Lieutenant general: debate on unification/independence of Taiwan welcomed

Source: China Military OnlineEditor: Yao Jianing
2015-12-08 16:28

BEIJING, December 8 (ChinaMil) -- The countdown has begun for Taiwan's election. Recently the Taiwan-based Sanlih Entertainment Television organized a debate, at which some star talk-show hosts argued "whether the mainland should accept Tsai Ing-wen as Taiwan's new leader".

During the debate, Zhou Yukou quoted the author's "How the Mainland will Unify Taiwan through War" published a few months ago, and once again demonstrated her flair for big talk by saying "the Communist Party of China must accept Taiwan's election. Taiwanese are not scared and are able to fend off their troops. We are not afraid!"

Another star talk-show host said in Era TV’s program called News Summit that Chairman of the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan Tsai Ing-wen's proposal to "maintain the status quo" should be respected.

He raised the example of the Iraq-Iran war, saying that once a war broke out across the strait, both sides would suffer immense casualties that might be more serious than the Korean War, and used that to threaten the mainland to accept Tsai Ing-wen who doesn't recognize the 1992 consensus.

The two commentators must have stayed in Taiwan for too long and don't know what has happened in the world. Do they know anything about the international situation today?

What Zhou Yukou said was interpreted by some netizens as a provocation to the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA), but those who have provoked the PLA in history never ended well.

Chiang Kai-shek started the civil war in 1946, and he was driven away to Taiwan by the PLA; the Americans once approached the China-North Korea border during the Korean War, but they were fought to retreat back behind the 38th Parallel.

The example about the Iraq-Iran War 30 years ago raised by another host is even more eloquent of his ignorance. Iraq and Iran have different religious factions and equivalent strength. Their war on the border resulting from religious, ethnic conflicts and territorial disputes and is in no way comparable to the relation between the mainland and Taiwan.

Taiwan is just a strait across the mainland, but can this shallow strait serve as Taiwan's natural barrier today?

Let's put aside changes in the political, economic and diplomatic strength on the two sides of the strait and focus on military strength.

20 years ago, the mainland and Taiwan both had military advantages, and Taiwan was even stronger in terms of the third-generation warplane and commanding automation.

However, 20 years later, the mainland's and Taiwan's military strength is no longer on the same level. Today, the mainland has six times as many third-generation warplanes as Taiwan, not to mention that Taiwan's are out-dated F-16A/B warplanes, and the mainland has far more than 10,000 long-range rocket missiles that can reach west Taiwan and even the entire island.

As to short-range missile of the mainland, the accuracy has been improved from hundreds of meters to more than ten meters. Given such a huge gap in military strength, if those advocating "Taiwan independence" still want to test the mainland's resolve, we are happy to take them on to the end.

We welcome Taiwan to carry out debates on the unification/independence issue because truth will only become clearer through debates. The Kuo Min Tang (KMT) candidate has invited Tsai Ing-wen for a debate many times, but Tsai has done nothing but beat around the bush so far.

I really hope Taiwan, taking the opportunity of the election, can thoroughly debate on this issue, and the Taiwan people will see for themselves which is in their interests - unification or division.

(The author is former deputy commander of the PLA Nanjing Military Area Command)

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