The Philippines has welcomed this and have said it is a good thing to help with the West Philippine Sea situation. I do feel bad for France as they bargained in good faith to build subs for Australia, but you also can't blame Australia for taking the USA up on better equipment. Any country in the world would have made the same decision.
Strategically it makes good sense for the USA to enter into this contract, and it should reap long term benefits. It will create stability in a region dominated by China's forces, even though this is still years down the road. The subs don't build themselves overnight. However just the knowledge it is coming is enough for China to take a good hard look at what they are doing, and what they hope to accomplish.
This is no way has any bearing on the Afghan fiasco. After 20 years we should have expected and deserved more than what we actually saw happen, but it also shouldn't be a surprise when you look at the history of the country, including Russia's adventures there just a few short years prior.
Bottom line is the more countries rally behind moves like this and push back on China, the more difficult it becomes for China to just take over. They have their hands full with Taiwan and Hong Kong now, it becomes very hard to put up fights on multiple fronts.
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Best Posts in Thread: Aukus
I remember a very similar situation (and conversation here) a few years ago. This is not the first time China has harassed Taiwan with their Navy or Air Force. China didn't invade then, I doubt they will now. An invasion of Taiwan and conventional war would be devastating for everyone involved, no one would really have an upper hand and there would likely be no real winners, politically or economically. I think China and the West know this and I believe China would rather use political and economic pressure on Taiwan. For the sake of my investments I really hope this can gets kicked down the road and a more peaceful solution is found. But maybe this will be the hill China and the world dies on.
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I think it's a bit silly that a small island nation in Europe that happens to have a colonial history would engage in a new alliance far from home, might be a recipe to get involved in another unwanted conflict (much like Blair got vilified after the Iraq war, Boris might reap some scorn in due course also .
There was/is already an Anzus agreement on cooperation in defense matters, so not much added value in this one it seems.
It would have been much more impressive if Indonesia, Malaysia, Vietnam, the Philippines and Taiwan would all have been invited to join.
On a side note, it is remarkable that the self appointed world policeman would seek to enter into a new military adventure far from its shores when they so unceremoneously just left another far away theater.
And no, I can't see anything game changing in it, other than the soured relationship with France that you already mentioned.
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The people of Taiwan are very smart and capable. Taiwan has been producing a counter strike capability by developing a indigenous missile industry. This includes surface to air, cruise and ballistic missiles.
The only thing that will keep China at bay will be if they perceive that there would be a high cost in attacking Taiwan. Losing half of the PLA navy in port to a missile counter strike would probably be considered too much.
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During the past recent history, with fighters purchased from the US, Taiwan had a air superiority over China. Now with so many long distance surface to air missiles and improvements in China's air force this is no longer the case. Furthermore China has stockpiled lots of precision ground to ground missiles.
In the past, before China had so many long distance missiles, the contingency plan was to use nuclear weapons to bomb China's airfields to reduce China's ability to field aircraft bombers against Taiwan. Now with so many missiles dispersed around this plan is not as effective.
The only contingency plan has been and still is the nuclear option. It is believed that Taiwan can only defend itself for seven days against a full Chinese air attack.
There would also be a economic blockade.
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All of this is rather obvious in the fact that up until now Australia was prohibited from any Nuclear weapons or the ability to create weapon grade fuel. The Subs contracted from France were thusly diesel propulsion which would have been easily tracked by the Chinese. This new deal allows Nuclear powered subs fueled by U.S. This will give the ability to stay submerged and silent much longer with ship killer ability. This will nullify the superior numbers recently acquired by the PRC in the coming conflict with PRC (which in my opinion is inevitable).
Last edited: Sep 23, 2021
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