Defense report details coastal strategy to repel Chinese forces

Taiwan’s latest defense report, released Wednesday, made public for the first time the military’s plans to repel invading Chinese forces along the coast of Taiwan proper as part of the country’s new defense strategy adopted since President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) took office in 2016.

In recent decades, the Armed Forces have seen beaches where enemy forces land as the focal point for repelling a potential Chinese invasion, but that emphasis has been broadened to an outer perimeter along the coast since 2017.

Taiwan has been forced to shift its strategy because China has been developing expeditionary warfare and over-the-horizon amphibious assault capabilities that pose a threat all along Taiwan’s coastline, a military source previously told local media.

In its 2019 National Defense Report, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) also included a graphic showing exactly how the R.O.C. Armed Forces would repel a Chinese invasion along the coastline.

In this one-page graphic, larger military vessels are seen dispatched along the country’s outer perimeter in coastal areas as the first line of defense against possible invaders.

Naval mines are used as a second line of defense behind those vessels together with other smaller naval vessels.

Meanwhile, armored vehicles and other weapons systems are positioned to eliminate enemy forces on beach areas.

Military aircraft and missiles are used as further deterrence, as shown in the graphic, which is part of the military’s “multiple deterrence” strategy adopted in 2017.

Wednesday’s report is the 15th since the MND began issuing the biennial report in 1992 and the second during President Tsai’s tenure.

At the same time, the military also tried to make its report more accessible to the public.

The main report contains 130 color photographs and a large number of charts. A comic-book version of the report was also issued to attract greater attention to national defense issues, according to the MND.

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