China Send 71 Warplanes Around Taiwan In ‘Strike Drill’

Seventy-one Chinese warplanes were detected flying around Taiwan on Sunday, performing military exercises, according to Taiwan’s Defense Ministry.

According to the People’s Liberation Army, China was conducting a “strike drill” in response to “provocations” and “collusion” between Taiwan and the United States.

“71 PLA aircraft and 7 PLAN vessels around Taiwan were detected in our surrounding region by 6 a.m.(UTC+8) today,” the Taiwan Defense Ministry tweeted. “R.O.C. Armed Forces have monitored the situation and tasked CAP aircraft, Navy vessels, and land-based missile systems to respond these activities.”

71 PLA aircraft and 7 PLAN vessels around Taiwan were detected in our surrounding region by 6 a.m.(UTC+8) today. R.O.C. Armed Forces have monitored the situation and tasked CAP aircraft, Navy vessels, and land-based missile systems to respond these activities. pic.twitter.com/DagRhnN69F

— 國防部 Ministry of National Defense, R.O.C. 🇹🇼 (@MoNDefense) December 26, 2022

The 71 warplanes included 60 fighter jets, of which six advanced SU-30 warplanes participated, AFP reported.

The Taiwan Defense Ministry also noted that 47 of the detected aircraft had crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait, which separates Taiwan from continental Asia, including China. Those aircraft reportedly entered Taiwan’s southwest air defense identification zone, (ADIZ), Taiwan’s airspace plus the additional area in which foreign aircraft are expected to identify themselves. Taiwan’s ADIZ overlaps China’s and includes part of mainland China.

47 of the detected aircraft (J-11*12, SU-30*6, CH-4 UCAV RECCE*1, J-10*6, J-16*18, Y-8 EW*1, Y-8 ASW*1, KJ-500*1, WZ-7 UAV RECCE*1) had crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait and entered Taiwan’s southwest ADIZ, flight paths as illustrated.

— 國防部 Ministry of National Defense, R.O.C. 🇹🇼 (@MoNDefense) December 26, 2022

The importance of Taiwan cannot be overestimated. Taiwan makes 65% of the world’s semiconductors and roughly 90% of the advanced chips.

In early November, Chinese Communist President Xi Jinping declared his country would focus on preparing for war, Express reported. The communist leader pointed to security concerns, claiming that it was “increasingly unstable and uncertain.”

“For years, Xi has been ratcheting up his rhetoric around the use of military force to reunify Taiwan with mainland China, and in response, the West has done very little,” Dr. Alan Mendoza, executive director of the Henry Jackson Society told the Daily Mail. “Liberal Democracies must now take him at his word, and work collectively, using all means necessary to deter Xi from invading Taiwan.”

“As a priority, Western nations must begin the process of removing all Chinese influence from critical industries such as energy, water and nuclear power,” Mendoza continued. “Next, we must immediately start the process of decoupling China from many of our most relied upon supply chain networks and develop new ones with likeminded partner nations.”

In October, the Chinese Communist Party interpolated an extra line into its constitution that stated it was “resolutely opposing and deterring” Taiwan’s independence.

In mid-October, U.S. Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Michael Gilday warned of a Chinese takeover of Taiwan, saying, “It’s not just what President Xi says, it’s how the Chinese behave and what they do. And what we’ve seen over the past 20 years is that they have delivered on every promise they’ve made earlier than they said they were going to deliver on it. So when we talk about the 2027 window, in my mind, that has to be a 2022 window or potentially a 2023 window. I can’t rule that out. I don’t mean at all to be alarmist by saying that. It’s just that we can’t wish that away.”

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