War with China over Taiwan. Inevitable?

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This topic contains 39 replies, has 7 voices, and was last updated by  Reg the Fronkey Farmer 3 days, 14 hours ago.

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  • #39591

    Unseen
    Participant

    Yes Unseen and in keeping with your request i did not answer Davis. I am not downplaying the significance of Taiwan and China.

    If it felt like I was a little over the top, I apologize. I see PopeBeanie has provided a link to the Israel/Middle East discussion.

    #39594

    jakelafort
    Participant

    No worries Unseen.

    #39597

    Unseen
    Participant

    Question: Can Taiwan realistically be protected from ultimate seizure by China? If you admit that China will ultimately absorb Taiwan, should the United States commit blood and treasure to protecting it?

    #39598

    Unseen
    Participant

    Taiwan’s Status Is a Geopolitical Absurdity

    Officially, 17 countries recognize Taiwan’s democratic government, which is known as the Republic of China, but the United Nations regards the People’s Republic of China government in Beijing, which has never controlled Taiwan, as speaking for the island. This leads to one of the many absurdities that affect Taiwan: Its 23 million citizens can travel the world on Taiwanese passports—emblazoned with Republic of China (Taiwan)—which are among the most widely accepted documents on the planet, but they cannot enter UN buildings with them. (This is despite the fact that in 1942, the Republic of China was among the first countries to sign the United Nations Declaration.) Washington does not recognize the Republic of China, yet Taiwan is the U.S.’s 11th-largest trading partner, the world’s 22nd-largest economy, and a crucial link in Silicon Valley’s supply chain.

    Despite its limited international presence it is difficult to overstate Taiwan’s strategic importance to both the United States and an increasingly assertive China. 

    #39602

    TheEncogitationer
    Participant

    Unseen,

    Without mentioning the distraction I unintentionally started (my apologies for that,) if Taiwan had it’s own means to defend itself in an age of fighter planes, killer satellites, and ICBMs, it wouldn’t require American lives.  And since Taiwan is a prosperous Asian Tiger Nation with a relatively free market, providing it the means of defence by trade shouldn’t require sacrifice of treasure.

    If anyone in Taiwan still hopes to unite with the mainland and Mongolia under a Chang Kai-Shek-style Republic of China, they need to give up right quick.  First, Chang Kai-Shek was a pretty bloody authoritarian in his own right and Taiwan deserves better.  Also, not until both Emperor Xi and the whole Communist apparatus is out of power could uniting with part of the mainland even be a possibility.  It also wouldn’t be fully possible with the Uighurs seeking to either secede or impose their own Tamerlane-flavored Islamic Republic.  Taiwanese should just be happy for the island they have and the freedom and success it has, and fight to hold onto that.

    As for not having a place in the United Nations, no big loss for Taiwan.  I wish we were out of it and it was out of the U.S.  Having the United Nations here is like being forced to pay the tab for your own roast, only there’s no laughter and the roast is literal.

    #39603

    _Robert_
    Participant

    It’s so easy to have others die for some academic political cause. The test should be unless you are willing (because the threat is so important to you) to take a 50 caliber round right through your helmet and leave half of your brain matter on the ground in Taiwan…you should not be in favor of sending troops. So you know as bad as the Syrians have it….it does not pass that test. Nor did Viet Nam, Iraq, Korea, Panama, Grenada or Kabul. I did not agree with the threat assessments of any of those, most ended as cluster fucks. WWII yeah. That threat was real. WWI.. I am not sure the Kaiser, Serbians, etc. were a real threat to the US and well it fixed nothing.

    #39605

    jakelafort
    Participant

    I agree with Robert.

    #39606

    Unseen
    Participant

    If we go to war over Taiwan it will be like our going to war in the Middle East over oil, but instead of oil, it’s microchips. We’ve let this tiny nation become the microchip cartel and so it’s a great prize for a superpower to want to control.

    A Taiwanese perspective on the Semiconductor Industry: Maintaining the Competitive Edge

    At the foundation of today’s technology, semiconductors have been regarded as the “new oil” of the 21st century. Omnipresent in our daily life (ranging from mobile phones, to cars and fighter jets), the semiconductor industry is becoming a crucial element of national security, moving beyond matters related to global trade. 

    Taiwan holds a near monopoly in this security-related product. Responsible for 63% of global semiconductor market share, Taiwan lies at the heart of the semiconductor industry, reaching an output value of 3 trillion NTD in 2020 (107.53 billion USD). As a world leader in semiconductor manufacturing, the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (臺灣積體電路製造公司,TSMC) accounts for 54% of the global semiconductor market share. The demand for the chips below 10 nm (the most advanced chips available thus far) is towering and is estimated to become the largest portion of monthly installed capacity share in 2024. Currently, in the global market of chips below 10 nanometers, TSMC is the major supplier (accounting for 84% of the pure foundry revenue in 2020). The only competitor producing chips below 10 nm is Samsung of South Korea with a 14% of pure foundry revenue in 2020. So far, the major clients of TSMC, such as China and the US, do not have the capacity to produce their own advanced semiconductors. As a result, Taiwan has become an indispensable link in the global production of semiconductors.  

    #39607

    _Robert_
    Participant

    US and European firms make the machines used in Taiwan to produce chips and chip making is not labor intensive…the chip argument is weak as we could just keep the machines home and pick up where we left off. A war would disrupt the supply chain at least as long as a transition. The military/industrial complex licking their chops as they launch yet another flag waving ‘freedom’ propaganda campaign.

    Applied Materials
    Lam Research
    ASML

    #39608

    War is not necessarily the only concern to businesses. The supply chain is as likely to be interrupted by extreme weather scenarios or even an Earthquake which happened in 2016 or even a Tsunami which have also happened before. It could even start as some small event that has unintended consequences.

    I can think of no reason why America cannot become self sufficient in producing its own chips. It has the knowledge, finances and the technical expertise to do so. Some “upskilling”  with the smaller chips may be needed but again that is not a game stopper.

    OK- just noticed Robert’s comment above – I agree that the disruption to the supply chain due to a war would probably have the same timeline as building operational factories. But Capital Expenditure is an investment that has ROI’s that are more than just monetary. Build Back Better!

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