March 13, 2023

China has three roads to Taiwan: The US must block them all

Originally published in The Hill

Washington has become preoccupied with the threat of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan in the near future. American national security discussions focus ever more intently on the military requirements for deterring or defeating that invasion.

These discussions — and the action they will hopefully generate — are important because the threat of a Chinese invasion is real. Yet it is not the most likely course that China’s President Xi Jinping will pursue to gain control of Taiwan.

China is pursuing three roads to unification, not one. It seeks to persuade the Taiwanese people and the international community to accept unification peacefully. It seeks to coerce such acceptance through forceful means short of war. And it is preparing to compel unification through direct military action.

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