In the days after the disastrous withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan under the direction of President Biden, ceding the country to the Taliban and engendering the perception around the world of American weakness, Chinese military aircraft, including fighter jets, have been flying repeatedly into Taiwan’s air defense zone.
“A total of 19 Chinese military aircraft, including fighter jets, flew into Taiwan’s southwestern air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Sunday, the fourth time this has taken place in September, according to the Ministry of National Defense,” Focus Taiwan reported on Sunday, adding, “The aircraft involved were 10 J-16 multi-role fighters, four H-6 bombers, four SU-30 fighters, and one Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft, according to a report released by the ministry.”
19 PLA aircraft (Y-8 ASW, H-6*4, J-16*10 and SU-30*4) entered #Taiwan’s southwest ADIZ on September 5, 2021. Please check our official website for more information: https://t.co/4krSmean3X pic.twitter.com/1sV3OA4ode
— 國防部 Ministry of National Defense, R.O.C. 🇹🇼 (@MoNDefense) September 5, 2021
“An air defence identification zone is an area outside of a country’s territory and national airspace but where foreign aircraft are still identified, monitored, and controlled in the interest of national security,” the BBC explained.
This is not the first time during the Biden administration China has sent a multitude of jets into Taiwan’s air defense zone; on January 24, 15 aircraft were spotted; on 12 April, Taiwan reported 25 jets.
On June 15, Taiwan English News noted, “The People’s Republic of China made 28 military aircraft incursions into Taiwan’s Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) today, June 15, a record number that follows an ‘unprecedented’ communique from the Group of Seven that highlighted the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait just two days ago.”
The G7 communique had discussed Taiwan for the first time ever, writing, “We underscore the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, and encourage the peaceful resolution of cross-strait issues.”
Here’s one key reason why Taiwan is so important to the West: semiconductors. Bloomberg News pointed out that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.” is the “world’s largest foundry and go-to producer of chips for Apple Inc. smartphones, artificial intelligence and high-performance computing,” adding, “there is also speculation that Beijing could resort to stealing chip IP, with Taiwan at the heart of those endeavors.”
“More than 1 trillion chips are currently being produced annually. Industry watchers, including the National Bank of Canada estimated earlier that TSMC alone accounts for one-fifth of the world’s chip production and up to 90% of the supply of the most advanced chips,” VOA News noted.
After former President George W. Bush bluntly stated in 2001 that the United States had an obligation to defend Taiwan if it was attacked by China, saying America would do “whatever it took” to aid Taiwan, then-senator Joe Biden ripped Bush in The Washington Post, writing, “Words matter. … As a matter of diplomacy, there is a huge difference between reserving the right to use force and obligating ourselves, a priori, to come to the defense of Taiwan. The president should not cede to Taiwan, much less to China, the ability automatically to draw us into a war across the Taiwan Strait.”