'Out of control': Taiwan says won't bow to China pressure

'Out of control': Taiwan says won't bow to China pressure

'Out of control': Taiwan says won't bow to China pressure

"Reportedly, the PLA owns and operates about half of these systems, most of which could support monitoring, tracking, and targeting of U.S. forces", states the Air Force report.

What alarms DIA officials is the increasing confidence China's military has displayed in its own abilities in recent years, and whether that could signal the country is inching toward striking or invading Taiwan, a senior defense intelligence official said Tuesday ahead of the report's release.

"As it (China's military power) continues to grow in strength and confidence, our nation's leaders will face a China insistent on having a greater voice in global interactions, which at times may be antithetical to USA interests", Lieutenant General Robert Ashley, director of the DIA, wrote in the report.

The report adds China has probably used unfair means to acquire cutting edge military technology.

The US, of course, is alarmed at the prospect of losing its military and economic supremacy over China in the ongoing shadow-boxing in the Indo-Pacific, where Beijing is also assiduously using its multi-billion-dollar One Belt, One Road (OBOR) and Digital Silk Road initiatives to make deep strategic inroads and shape interests. The U.S.is Taiwan's chief source of military hardware and is legally bound to respond to threats against its security.

"China's military strategy remains focused on developing the capability to dissuade, deter, and if ordered, defeat a potential third-party intervention in regional conflicts", says the report.

"The result ... is a PLA on the verge of fielding some of the most modern weapon systems in the world. In some areas, it already leads the world", Ashley wrote.

China a year ago ramped up pressure on foreign companies including Marriott International and Qantas for referring to Taiwan and Hong Kong as separate from China in drop down menus or other material.

It said 45 had referred to both territories incorrectly.

The report said China's "robust, lethal force" could dominate "air, maritime, space and information domains" and undermine USA interest.

China has also outpaced competitors in its ballistic missiles systems, creating more precise systems to carry conventional or nuclear weapons than others including the United States and Russian Federation, largely because those nations were bound by treaty obligations that China was not, according to the DIA assessment.

Earlier this month Xi called on Taiwan to reject independence and embrace "peaceful reunification" with China in a conciliatory speech that nevertheless took a hard line on the self-governing island's political sovereignty and freedoms. "We reserve the option for all the necessary means".

The Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) said Thursday it would investigate a reporter for Hong Kong's Ta Kung Pao (大公報) newspaper after it wrongly alleged that President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) had sent a secret envoy to meet with Hong Kong independence activists.

Speaking to reporters in Washington on Tuesday, a senior defense official admitted that he was anxious about China now having the confidence to pull off major military moves - such as invading Taiwan.

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