China Launches Live-Fire Drills, Missiles Around Taiwan

China Launches Live-Fire Drills, Missiles Around Taiwan

August 9, 2022 - 5:01 am

The Drills Are The Equivalent Of An Island-Wide Military Blockade

After US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan ended on Wednesday, the People's Liberation Army carried out several live-fire drills and training activities near Taiwan on Thursday, including the firing of several ballistic missiles. The regions selected for these drills are unusually near to Taiwan, being substantially closer than those during the previous Taiwan Straits Crisis in 1995–1996 and significantly escalating regional tensions. The drills, according to Taiwan's defence ministry, are the equivalent of an island-wide military blockade. 

Live Ammunition

Live ammunition is used in live-fire drills, which are primarily employed by military personnel to simulate as closely as possible the conditions of actual conflict. In order to prepare them for future emergency scenarios, law enforcement and firemen also conduct live-fire drills as a type of field training. Soldiers are given the chance to use their weapons and equipment in simulated combat situations while receiving live-fire training (like ships, aircraft, tanks, and drones). These training sessions are essential for keeping personnel combat-ready, fostering unit cohesion, and fostering confidence in their ability to handle equipment and weapons effectively. In order to catch any design faults before the weapons are completely operational, it also comprises testing the effectiveness of vehicles, weapon platforms, and weapon systems (such intercontinental ballistic missiles, cruise missiles, and anti-aircraft weapons). The four-day drills, which included firing over a dozen missiles, are occurring in six areas that the Chinese military has designated. A few are adjacent to Taiwan's claimed territorial seas and the largest commercial ports on the island.

Chinese Communist Party’s Goal

Since the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) defeated Nationalist leader Chiang Kai-shek in the mainland civil war of 1946–1949, who retreated across the Taiwan Strait with his allies to establish the Republic of China (ROC) in Taiwan, the goal of the CCP has been to unite Taiwan with the mainland. Beijing views US support for Taiwan as one of, if not the primary, barriers to achieving reunification. By stationing the 7th fleet in the Taiwan Strait after the start of the Korean War, the US prevented any potential invasion plans by Beijing. It later signed a defence pact with Taiwan in 1954. Eventually, after establishing diplomatic ties with Beijing in 1979, the US did dissolve the treaty. The Taiwan Relations Act, which required the US to give Taiwan defensive weaponry and "maintain the capacity of the United States" to essentially defend Taiwan, was passed by the US Congress in response. Despite the fact that the US also withdrew its diplomatic recognition of Taiwan, Beijing has continued to be extremely watchful of any moves that might imply that Washington is trying to add any "officiality" to the relationship because it believes that doing so would undermine US commitments to China regarding the status of Taiwan. When the US allowed then-Taiwanese president Lee Teng-hui to visit his alma mater, Cornell University, it was one of the major issues at stake in the Taiwan Straits Crisis of 1995–1996. This nerve is also touched by Pelosi's visit, which is the first by a high-ranking US politician in decades.

Impact of Mrs. Pelosi's Trip

Commercial air and sea lines were hampered by the military display in retaliation for Mrs. Pelosi's trip to Taiwan, which Beijing claims as its own territory, and there were worries about future military build-up. Taiwan and the US denounced China's actions, and the White House said the USS Ronald Reagan aircraft carrier and its auxiliary ships will stay in the area "to monitor the situation.” Beijing's toolkit has expanded dramatically, so we may also see new forms of punishment, particularly in cyberspace. These will then have an impact on Taiwan's stock market, aviation, shipping, and currency, among other things.

Questions and Answers Questions and Answers

Question : What is the significance of live-fire drills?
Answers : Live-fire drills are used to prepare military personnel for actual conflict by simulating as closely as possible the conditions of actual conflict.
Question : Why is live-fire training essential for soldiers?
Answers : Live-fire training is essential for soldiers because it helps them to stay combat-ready, fosters unit cohesion, and builds confidence in their ability to use weapons and equipment effectively.
Question : What does the Chinese Communist Party want?
Answers : The Chinese Communist Party wants to unite Taiwan with the mainland.
Question : China views any US involvement with Taiwan as a direct challenge to their sovereignty. Why?
Answers : Beijing believes that adding any "officiality" to the US-Taiwan relationship would undermine US commitments to China regarding the status of Taiwan.
Question : How might China's actions impact Taiwan's economy?
Answers : China's actions could impact Taiwan's economy by affecting the stock market, aviation, shipping, and currency.