Record maneuvers by the PLA against Taiwan without US or DDP provocation September 19, 2023 Ralf Ostner The PRC’s invasion threats against Taiwan are intensifying. A new record was broken with 100 combat aircraft and war could be launched at any time. Apparently there is no need for a pretext, nor is there any “provocation” from the USA and Taiwan being cited for this latest demonstration, or are they still preparing for an invasion, perhaps during the presidential elections in the USA and Taiwan? Or does Xi think that he can strengthen the KMT for the presidential elections and scare the Americans and the Taiwanese?
„Over 100 PLA warplanes set new record in drill around Taiwan island
Liu Xuanzun Published: Sep 18, 2023 08:38 PM
A fighter jet attached to the PLA Air Force Xi’an Flying College takes off at sunset during an around-the-clock training mission on August 19, 2023. Photo:China Military
A record-breaking more than 100 aircraft of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) were spotted around the island of Taiwan within 24 hours on Sunday and Monday. The sightings, which came after 20 PLA vessels, also broke their respective record last week. Experts say this shows that PLA exercises around the Taiwan island have reached a new level.
The defense authority on the island of Taiwan said in a press release on Monday that it detected 103 PLA aircraft and nine PLA vessels around the island from Sunday morning to Monday morning, with 40 of the detected aircraft, including Su-30, J-10 and J-16 fighter jets, YU-20 tanker aircraft and KJ-500 early warning aircraft, crossing the so-called median line of the Taiwan Straits or entered the island’s self-proclaimed southwest and southeast air defense identification zones.
It was the highest number of PLA aircraft that has been recorded in a single day around the island of Taiwan, observers said.
According to flight paths provided by the island’s defense authority, the PLA warplanes covered both ends of the Taiwan Straits and flew to the east side of Taiwan island.
Dispatching a complete array of more than 100 aircraft to a same region in one day usually indicates a large-scale operational level campaign, Fu Qianshao, a Chinese mainland military aviation expert, told the Global Times on Monday.
Such a large number of forces and their large-scale joint operation indicates that the PLA’s combat-oriented exercises around the island of Taiwan have reached a new level, and can be turned into real action at any time if necessary, Fu said.
Only less than a week ago, on September 12, the defense authority on the island of Taiwan said that 20 PLA vessels were detected around the island of Taiwan over the previous day, which also set a new record for PLA vessel activity around the island.
More than a dozen PLA warships including the aircraft carrier Shandong held a five-day exercise in the West Pacific waters to the east side of the island of Taiwan from September 11 to Friday, according to releases from the defense authority on the island of Taiwan and Japan’s Ministry of Defense Joint Staff.
Both the record-breaking aircraft exercise and warship exercise were not announced by the PLA, and analysts said that such sudden, large-scale exercises could reflect that the PLA is able to deploy powerful, large scale concerted forces that can complete missions within a short period.
China expert Professor van Ess commented on this as follows:
“It is interesting that the Global Times quotes the defense authority on the island of Taiwan for this. In China, a former doctoral student told me that Xi Jinping wouldn’t dare attack Taiwan. Apparently there is a lot of support among the population for bringing the island home. Are there any mind games going on now? The timing is good because the Americans are focused on Ukraine. And the longer you wait, the harder it becomes? The economy is going badly, the population is slowly getting used to it.”
The old million dollar question: Peak power theory, according to which China is now becoming aggressive due to increasing internal difficulties and opposition to its assertative foreign policy before it has passed the zenith of power in order to take advantage of a historical window of opportunity and as Habeck and some US generals believe “ will attack Taiwan by 2017 at the latest“. Interesting that this demonstration of strength comes after the BRICS expansion, China’s new map for the Indo-Pacific and India, the G20 summit, which upgraded India as a great power, including the Western Silk Road India-Middle East-European Economic Corridor as a counter-project to the 10th 1st anniversary of China’s Silk Road BRI. In any case, there is no longer any need for popular Pelosi visits or “provocations” from the other side as a pretext.