The Washington Examiner reported that Senate Republicans supported small U.S. units being sent to Taiwan to train local forces to resist a Chinese invasion.
“I think it’s a good thing for us to show support for the folks of Taiwan and to show China that we mean business and hands-off Taiwan,” Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, ranking member on the Armed Services subcommittee that oversees the U.S. Special Operations Command, told the Examiner.
The Wall Street Journal reported special forces operations and marines have been in Taiwan for more than one year.
“It has been going on for quite some time,” Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., ranking member on the Armed Services Committee, told the Examiner after being asked about the training operations.
After being asked about training operations, Sen. James Inhofe (Republican from Oklahoma), stated that “it has been going on since quite some time.”
Scott told the Examiner that even a small contingent — such as the two dozen special forces operators reported to be on the island — could help protect Taiwan. China would regard the troops as a precursor to a larger U.S. intervention to fight an invasion.
“I believe it does and I believe it’s important to do it,” Scott said. “Taiwan is an independent democracy, and we should stop being ambiguous and be very clear that we’re going to defend them.”
Although the U.S. did not explicitly commit to fighting for Taiwan over the years, it maintained friendly informal relations with Taipei’s government.
The U.S. has also provided Taiwanese forces military equipment to counter an attack from Beijing. Beijing claims sovereignty over Taiwan.
China is increasing its harassment of Taiwan with record numbers of military aircraft flying near Taiwan in the last week.
China’s People’s Liberation Army flew 56 aircraft in international airspace off Taiwan’s southwest coast on Monday. This set a new record and capped four days of sustained pressure that involved 149 flights.
Scott stated to the Examiner that the Chinese air force sorties were “pretty gross” and a sign for Xi Jinping, the Chinese General Secretary.
“Xi is into world domination,” Scott stated. “He already took over Hong Kong, with no guns. And, I think he’s going to do everything he can to intimidate the world and take over Taiwan.”