China's English language Global Times is viewed as a tabloid under the "roof" of CCP, but being a "communist" tabloid does not mean that even this tabloid is free from good thoughts and valuable opinions. Such as this from former US Marine Corps officer and now civilian employee of Pentagon Franz Gayl who penned and interesting piece in Global Times about possible war between China and the United States around Taiwan. Gayl opens with a broadside.
It would seem to some that a US war with China over the island of Taiwan appears imminent. Considering the congestion of hostile forces in, above, and below the Taiwan Straits and South China Sea, conflict could explode by accident or design. Once blood is drawn, the US will have few options. If the US elects to fight China over the island of Taiwan, then it will lose.
And I happen to agree militarily with Gayl in terms of a possible hostilities around Taiwan, especially when Gayl goes into the neck of the woods and addresses what is commonly known as "fundamentals".
Many Americans assume China's citizenry longs for a liberal democracy like that on the island of Taiwan, and that war will trigger popular revolt. But the Taiwan question is not an ideological dispute. Rather it is a raw and painful open wound in China's civilizational identity. Today, US othering of Chinese only fuels a fierce nationalism in its 1.4 billion citizens. China has a traditional self-narrative wherein the preservation of face and enforcement of sovereignty are inseparable. All the while the balance of power has shifted fundamentally. The US would be wise to regard China as a peer superpower, if only due to her casualty-tolerance - China's decisive advantage in any fight with the US. China also shares a binding mutual defense treaty with North Korea, and the depths of its friendship and security bonds with Russia should never be underestimated.
This is an excellent point. Nationalism is not the thing the United States, which still operates with a primitive two-dimensional picture of the world (unsurprisingly, considering a "level" of US "elites") and turned the term "communism" into the euphemism for everything the United States doesn't like, encountered since Vietnam where the war was lost not just to Vietnamese "communists" but to Vietnamese nationalism, especially when one considers the historic age of Vietnamese, whose antiquity goes back as far as 2000+ years BC. American "elites" have no concept of profound and long history and we all know how the War in Vietnam ended. But Gayl makes the most important observation here:
The US has never paid an existential price for violating another nation's sovereignty, leading to our smug sense of military invincibility. However, with Taiwan being a core Chinese priority, that would be a fatal miscalculation. Still, the US counts on regional allies to share the pain. Yet some will have blood debts to pay if they engage in China's civil war. For example, India was bloodied badly in the 1960s for testing China's territorial resolve. Japan's humiliating 50-year occupation of Taiwan and the Rape of Nanjing also remain fresh, unforgettable wounds for China. The US allies will definitely think twice before militarily intervening in China's unresolved civil war and internal affairs.
Yes, I am on record for years that the expeditionary warfare--the only warfare the United States knows--is not a continental warfare which shapes nation-states and national awareness. Vietnamese lost in the war with the United States millions of people--numbers incomprehensible for the average American, while China is even more casualties tolerant and, unlike Vietnam of 1960s, which was dependent on Soviet support, has own armed forces which are capable to both defend China proper and project power into Taiwan. Recall what I wrote four years ago:
Expeditionary warfare simply does not provide a proper angle on the issues of actual defense. The nation whose 20th Century losses due to wars from WW I, to the Russian Civil War, to WW II number roughly in the 40-45 million range, would certainly try to not repeat such ordeals. This is the reality from which most of the US elites are completely detached. In layman’s lingo, the United States lacks the geographic, historic, cultural, economic and technological pressures to develop and have a coherent defensive military doctrine and weapons which would help to implement it. Russia lives under these pressures constantly and, in fact, Russians as an ethnos were formed and defined by warfare.
In related news, yesterday Kiev "celebrated" the anniversary of the SS Division Galicina--a kind of people US and EU support. You know, "democratic" Ukraine et al.