The Chinese Invasion Threat: Taiwan's Defense and American Strategy in Asia by Ian Easton
A well-researched, look at PLA strategies that may be used against Taiwan, and ways Taiwan has planned to repel the invaders. Of course, many of the exact plans are unknown, but by reading PLA strategy manuals, Easton gives us the popular thoughts and attitudes on a possible invasion against Taiwan. There is also a chapter on America's strategy in Asia.
After reading this book, I am not worried at all that China will 'invade' Taiwan. It is very difficult to launch amphibious operations, and even harder to hide the type of build up of troops that China would need to overwhelm Taiwan. The prevailing attitude of PLA officers in planning an amphibious assault of Taiwan is 'pessimism'. China would also be under a time crunch to secure Taiwan very quickly, lest America, Japan, or Australia come to Taiwan's aid.
I am more worried about China gradually chipping away at Taiwan's sovereignty, and encroaching on our 'international space'. This is already happening in international organizations like the United Nations (UN), and the World Health Organization (WHO), where China blocks Taiwan from participating or even becoming an 'observer'.
This book was a breath of fresh air in assessing China's chances in taking Taiwan in a military engagement. There seems to an attitude of 'fatalism' to Taiwan's chances against China. They seem to feel that it is inevitable that China will take over Taiwan. This is simply not true. This is one of China's strategies to securing Taiwan, psychological warfare, against the people of Taiwan so that they think fighting China is useless. China would love to take Taiwan without firing a shot if possible.
I hope there is more scholarship on a Taiwan-China confrontation in the future. For now, this is a good start.
I bought this eBook from Camphor Press. They are a small publisher that focuses on publishing books about Asia and South East Asia. They currently have a “LOCKDOWN SALE” going on where any 4 eBooks are only $10 USD. It's a bargain. Go check it out!
Rating: ★★★★★ Book #40 in my My 2020 Reading Challenge