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Peter Cairns

Battle for Taiwan.

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I am not sure it's even at all, The Vietnamese were prepared to give 1 million to reunify their country, Us resolve began to crack at 50,000.

The Iranians lost close to 1 million fighting Iraq, Saddam over 100,000 in Kuwait, US public opinion is shifting against US forces in Iraq at less than 3,000.

When the Chinese invaded Vietnam over Cambodia, in a month they took 60,000 casualties, with 20,000 dead. The chinese leadership were disappointed by the result, but didn't bat an eye at the casualties.

Even if the US was to kill at a rate of 20 to one, which would be unlikely given the scenario, if the Chinese were prepared to sacrifice 1 million men, the US would need to be prepared to lose 50,000, Korea only cost 33,000.

Peter.

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Originally posted by Peter Cairns:

I am not sure it's even at all, The Vietnamese were prepared to give 1 million to reunify their country, Us resolve began to crack at 50,000.

The Iranians lost close to 1 million fighting Iraq, Saddam over 100,000 in Kuwait, US public opinion is shifting against US forces in Iraq at less than 3,000.

When the Chinese invaded Vietnam over Cambodia, in a month they took 60,000 casualties, with 20,000 dead. The chinese leadership were disappointed by the result, but didn't bat an eye at the casualties.

Even if the US was to kill at a rate of 20 to one, which would be unlikely given the scenario, if the Chinese were prepared to sacrifice 1 million men, the US would need to be prepared to lose 50,000, Korea only cost 33,000.

Peter.

I think that US public opinion depends more on the conflict than on how many died. After all, a whole lot of Americans died in WWII, and America's resolve stayed pretty firm. I think that a better judge of resolve is what the people see for the future and the nature of the conflict itself.

In WWII, people would support the war despite high casualties because 1: it was clear we were winning and 2: it was clear we were doing the right thing by fighting evil. In Vietnam, the public didn't support the war because 1: no end was in sight and 2: after a while, people saw the war less as a crusade against communism and more as a attempt to prop up a failing state on grounds of questionable legality.

I think that if China were to do a Pearl Harbor attack on America, the American people would likely support a war with China through to its end, despite the high costs along the way. I do not, however, think that the American people would support the cause of Taiwanese independance so strongly.

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juan_gigante,

I think the Pearl Harbour issue is important, The US would fight a lot harder and longer if it was attacked. That's the main reason Germany was so keen on US troops being stationed there. if a war started the Us would be locked in to fighting from day one.

A fair number of immediately post war US politicains took the same view, as they weren't sure the US public would be up for fighting with a nuclear Russia to save the Krauts. ( I use krauts as it reflects the attitude immediately after ww2).

Peter

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i personally don't see why china would use force to gets its way with Taiwan, when it could just sit there slowly gaining economic power until its richer then the USA (i read somewhere that will be 2015, but even if it takes till 2050 they will get there in the end (unless some stupid fool drags them into a war tongue.gif )) then it could threaten economic warfare and get its way that way.

that is unless Europe and the USA strikes up some weird trade deal that keeps them alot richer then everyone else. cheap power is a good way of offseting labour costs... just a idea.

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My worry is that China will go through a "feeling their oats" phase of more aggressive nationalism roughly parallel to that of post-1870 Germany, although I'm not suggesting that 21st century Chinese and 19th century Germans are the same, or that this is inevitable.

However, whenever I speak with educated Chinese mainlanders at length, even ones who like and admire the West, I always find a certain sense of grievance and entitlement buried under the politeness. It goes something like:

a. China is now standing up, no thanks to you Westerners who kept us down for hundreds of years (long and awful story about opium follows). Well, OK, our current growth IS fueled by your willingness to buy stuff from us, but that's just because our domestic demand hasn't ramped yet and you're too lazy to do make goods as well as we do.

b. We have 1/4 of the world's population, but Westerners also shut us out of the chance to control the 1/4 of the world's landmass/resources that are rightfully ours. We were shut out of the New World and Southeast Asia (except as coolies) and shut out of Siberia totally by the Russians.

So what type of future behavior does that imply, as China becomes steadily more formidable both economically and militarily, but that (partly imagined, partly real) feeling of being "dissed" lingers?

I didn't say that this would make any kind of economic sense, but aggrieved nationalism seldom does. And the stakes are a lot higher this time.

The post-unification Germans had a similar compex -- fear of foreign meddling, feeling of being sneered at by snobbish French and English, feeling they'd largely been shut out of the rush for colonies, etc.

And in answer to those who have faith in the old globalization canard that "No two nations with a McDonalds have ever fought a war" (also factually inaccurate, since Belgrade had 2 McDonalds in 1995), recall that the elites who shelled and machine gunned one another in the muck in the Great War all loved much the same music, art, literature, cuisine and fashions.

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Matthias said

i personally don't see why china would use force to gets its way with Taiwan
I think that unfortunately a rationalist approach you describe very rarely manifests itself in the realm of realpolitik where pride and a perverse view of national interest (ego, or face in China case) can be seen as the underlying cause of foreign policy decisions.

I think LongLeftFlank's description of the tone and character of the Chinese view of the west is really quite accurate.

Having lived in Taiwan for a couple of years I can say that the Taiwanese temperament is fairly hostile toward the mainland regime and that it is unlikely the countries will unify unless by force.

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LtCol West said

It would make for a tremendous CM:SF game. I would use most of Peter's scenario and pit US, UK, Aussie. South Korean, and loyal Taiwanese forces against Chinese and communist Taiwanese forces. Taiwan would make for a varied battlefield as well.
At present the PRC has mainly fifth-column or stay-behind type agents in Taiwan, as well as standard espionage operatives carrying out intelligence work (estimated at approximately 2,000 agents in 2000).

If a conflict were to occur, I doubt whether these fifth-column cells would constitute a military unit one could play in CMx2. At best a four man command/FAC team or such like used for spotting or coordination. I think their role could be abstracted into operational/tactical intelligence.

Not sure how UK forces would be involved as you mention as we have neither treaty obligation nor any national interest in direct confrontation with China.

Taiwan is a fantastic country full of wonderful people, yet I fear a British parliament would be hard pressed to justify war with China unless there was broad international support. As Taiwan is not officially recognised by most nations on earth as a sovereign state, gaining a UN mandate for action to liberate her would prove very difficult indeed. The main drawback from a UK perspective would be damaged trade and a hike in the price of laptops and consumer electronics.

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cassh,

Though the UK doesn't have any ties to Taiwan, it has tied it's foreign Policy almost totally to the US with the "special relationship" now so central that there is an arguement to suggest that Uk foreign policy currently all but dictates that we back any US action.

I recently read the Admiralty evidence to the House of Commons Defence Select Committee, and the navy reason for two new large aircraft carriers was that" these are what the Americans think we should build".

Peter.

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RN Carriers

With regard to the two new flat tops, this has more to do with the way the JSF (Sea Harrier replacement) and EH101 will operate than anything the Americans want.

UK Foreign Policy

We have, and have had quite different and distinct approaches to the Balkans, East Africa, West Africa, Israel/Palestine etc. Where we usually agree closely is on oil. Not just for the standard requirements of our developed economies, but more directly due to the structure of how oil is bought and sold and its intrinsic link to the ability of the US government's cash flow- namely the petrodollar cycle.

Petrodollars & US Foreign Policy

That oil and the petrodollar are crucial to the balancing of US treasury cheque-books means we will often follow suit with our close ally on matters of oil supply as a stabilising factor in the global economy. If the Fed's petrodollar credit card ever ran dry the US would face a fiscal crisis that would stagnate the whole US economy and affect us all globally.

Protection of the petrodollar is a fundamental necessity for US foreign policy. To those who doubt this, one merely has to look at recent events. Curious that Iran's bogeyman status and their nuclear programme that has been openly running for the past twelve years suddenly became a show stopping issue a week after Mahmoud Ahmadinejad announced that Iran would no longer sell oil in US dollars, and start selling Iranian oil in Euros.

Containment and inspection issues were not seen as a problem prior to this. IAEA reports were saying pretty much what they are saying now. Yet, as soon as Iran announced it was not going to bankroll the US Government checking account anymore we get the nuclear issue rising to the top of the concerns pile. Call me a cynic but it is all a little too predictable.

The fact that Saddam had done the same exact same thing weeks before the White House announced a policy of regime change in Iraq and then came upon the WMD issue will doubtless be dismissed as coincidence and conspiracy theorist ranting. However, it is interesting that the priority target to seize and secure in Baghdad was the oil ministry - this whilst the hospitals, power stations, water treatment facilities, etc where ransacked and looted around them - yet US forces were tasked with protecting the building where the infrastructure and mechanisms for selling oil were housed. That, the Iraqis reverted to selling oil in dollars the next day, even though they made a $7 net loss per barrel not selling in Euros - again just coincidence.

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So the Iranian nuke problem is just a fabrication of the U.S. Government....payback for them selling oil in Euros. Somebody really should put those evil Americans in their place. How can the world possibly tolerate such evil!? Well, I guess the same world that would allow Iran to nuke Israel into oblivion can tolerate the US crimes too.

Treeburst155 out.

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Originally posted by cassh:

Petrodollars & US Foreign Policy

Protection of the petrodollar

Containment and inspection issues were not seen as a problem prior to this.

Call me a cynic but it is all a little too predictable.

The fact that Saddam had done the same exact same thing weeks before the White House announced a policy of regime change

However, it is interesting that the priority target to seize and secure in Baghdad was the oil ministry

That, the Iraqis reverted to selling oil in dollars the next day

Oil or not…It would not bother me a bit to see the same thing happen to Iran and/or Syria that happened to Iraq. I believe terrorism should be stopped and those Middle Eastern governments have supported it long enough.

I could care less if Iraq had WMD’s or not. I am encouraged by the projection of western Military force into the Middle East (Iraq and Afghanistan). The claims that “Iraq had nothing to do with terrorism” are laughable to me. Terrorists lived, operated and staged within Iraq’s borders just as Iranian terrorists are doing now.

I am not surprised that Europe (as usual) is waiting for the U.S. and U.K. to act. Just as they waited for the U.S. and U.K. to stop Hitler and to stop the Soviet Union, they (again) will depend on them to stop terrorism.

I believe that Israel has a right to exist in peace.

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Originally posted by Abbott:

I am not surprised that Europe (as usual) is waiting for the U.S. and U.K. to act. Just as they waited for the U.S. and U.K. to stop Hitler and to stop the Soviet Union, they (again) will depend on them to stop terrorism.

Did you know that you're a bigoted ass?

Well, there.

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Originally posted by Sergei:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by Abbott:

I am not surprised that Europe (as usual) is waiting for the U.S. and U.K. to act. Just as they waited for the U.S. and U.K. to stop Hitler and to stop the Soviet Union, they (again) will depend on them to stop terrorism.

Did you know that you're a bigoted ass?

Well, there. </font>

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Originally posted by cassh:

Treeburst155 - that's right I hate all evil pig-dog imperialist American and their poodles Israel and the UK...

Maybe you and Sergei should look into the mirror?

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Originally posted by Abbott:

your lack of guile and worldly experience nor do I agree with your (again, what I see as) your childlike viewpoint of the world in general.

You casually suggesting invading Iran and Syria hardly speaks for your guile, worldly experience or wide perspective on world affairs. I too generally enjoy your presence here, but some of your comments (like your extremist Republican interpretation of history above) just make me wonder...

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US and UK to stop hitler,

Aren't you kind of forgetting that the French declared war on Germany at the same time as britain, which was about 3 years before the US did, which I recall was the day after Pearl harbour.

Funny that, it didn't start to be a world war against evil till the day after the US got attacked, up until then it was a European thing.

Oh and before anyone mentions lend lease, the UK paid the money back with lots of interest, indeed we paid off another instalment just last year.

Peter.

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Originally posted by Abbott:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr /> Originally posted by Sergei:

just make me wonder...

Likely just as I wonder about those who would allow Syria and Iran to go on supporting terrorism. </font>

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