Chairman Mark Milley, the head of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, informed the media that it is crucial for the United States and its allies to increase and accelerate the provision of military equipment to Taiwan. Despite being a small island with democratic governance, Taiwan remains a contentious issue in the international arena as China claims it as its territory. Taiwan has maintained its independent governance separate from China since 1949.
In response to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine, the United States has redirected certain arms originally intended for Taiwan to Ukraine. This decision comes as China demonstrated its military capabilities through war games conducted near the island of Taiwan.
Tensions between the U.S. and China have escalated, leading to strained diplomatic relations. Consequently, the U.S. is currently evaluating the deployment of troops in Asia, including the exploration of potential alternative basing options beyond South Korea and Japan.
According to Business Insider, while Taiwan ranks 23rd in terms of overall military power globally, it holds the top position in available reserve manpower. As of April 2023, this densely populated island boasted over 1.5 million reserve personnel. It is noteworthy that despite its relatively small size, Taiwan has a population three times larger than that of the state of Maryland.
Even after a significant arms sale worth $619 billion in March 2023, Taiwan remains committed to strengthening its naval fleet and military capabilities. The United States, while closely observing the complex and delicate relationship between Washington, D.C., and Beijing, remains steadfast in its support of Taiwan’s democratic principles.
Taiwan plays a significant role in the production of advanced semiconductors and chips, manufacturing around 90% of them. As this technology has become crucial for the world, many nations consider the defense of Taiwan as a global responsibility. To address supply chain challenges arising from the pandemic and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, President Biden and Japan are collaborating with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Corporation (TSMC) to expand manufacturing operations in Arizona and Japan.
Over the years, Taiwan has developed into a prosperous and autonomous region with immense value. It has cultivated strong friendships with other nations, and it is hoped that these alliances will be sufficient to prevent conflicts.