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U.S. military concerned about increasing risk of Chinese action against Taiwan

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The U.S. military is warning that China is probably speeding up its timetable for taking control of Taiwan, the Associated Press reported on Wednesday.

“We have indications that the risks are actually going up,” Adm. Philip Davidson, the highest ranking U.S. military commander in the Asia-Pacific region, said last month, referring to a potential Chinese military action against the island nation, according to the AP.

“The threat is manifest during this decade — in fact, in the next six years,” Davidson also said.

Adm. John Aquilino, Davidson’s expected successor, declined to back up the six-year timeframe. However, according to the AP, he said at his confirmation hearing last month: “My opinion is, this problem is much closer to us than most think.”

He also said a “likely” future invasion of Taiwan by China was of “critical concern”.

Due to mounting tensions, the USS John S. McCain ventured into the Taiwan strait on Wednesday, according to Focus Taiwan. This is the fourth time a U.S. warship has sailed through the strait since President Joe Biden took office in January, according to the outlet.

According to Reuters, China has been performing fighter jet flyovers in Taiwanese airspace and a carrier group of its has drilled near Taiwan.

While Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu on Wednesday said the military threat is growing, he noted it was not yet “particularly alarming”. The Chinese military in has been performing “real combat-type” exercises nearer to the island in recent years, Wu also said, according to the AP.

“We are willing to defend ourselves, that’s without any question,” Wu also said. “We will fight a war if we need to fight a war, and if we need to defend ourselves to the very last day, then we will defend ourselves to the very last day.”

Last month, Chinese President Xi Jinping said that China’s military must be “prepared to respond” to numerous security situations amid rising instability and uncertainty, the South China Morning Post reported.

Biden late last month during his first formal press conference said the U.S. and its allies will “hold China accountable to follow the rules,” according to NBC News.

You can follow Douglas Braff on Twitter @DouglasPBraff.

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Chinese Spy Balloon: Tensions rise between the U.S. and China

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A strange object was spotted Wednesday over Billings Montana. The Pentagon confirmed Thursday that the strange object was, in fact, a Chinese spy balloon. According to a report from KPAX, a western Montana news outlet, the balloon had been on the governments radar for days.

On Friday, the Chinese government released a statement saying that the balloon spotted in Billings is a “civilian airship” that’s sole purpose is used to collect research on weather and that it had just blown off course. The balloon was not shot down by orders of the Pentagon due to the risk of falling debris injuring people on the ground.

Sara Carter, who has spoken frequently on the Chinese government’s threat and expansion to the West, stated on Twitter that the United States has failed to stop China from purchasing land near military installations, vital agricultural land, as well as, allowing Chinese linked companies, such as Huawei, to install technology in cellular towers. Those cellular towers are located in Montana, along side more than 150 ICBM nuclear silos.

China said, “The Chinese side regrets the unintended entry of the airship into U.S. airspace due to force majeure.” Majeure meaning that it was out of there control. It blew off course due to limited “self-steering” capabilities according the Ministry. The ministry also stated that the balloon, “deviated far from its planned course.”

This incident is adding fuel to the fire of what is already a tense relationship between the worlds two largest economies. China already lays claim to approximately 80% of the South China Sea, and is seeking full control over Taiwan after assuming full control of Hong Kong. China’s belt and road initiative has invested copious amounts of money into building infrastructure in other countries and uses it as economic blackmail. China’s transportation of fentanyl into Mexico is yet again another example of how they are seeking to damage the US.

Is this just a weather ballon that blew off course? US officials at the White House seem to be unconvinced and will continue to monitor the balloon, as reported.

UPDATED: Statement from the Pentagon was jaw dropping when a reporter asked if the public has a right to know about Beijing’s balloon.

“The public certainly has the ability to look up in the sky and see where the balloon is,” a DOD official responded.

 

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