THERE are fears WW3 could be closer than previously thought after China boasts that the US would have “no chance” of stopping an invasion of Taiwan.
Du Wenlong, a military expert at China’s Military Culture Society, said US efforts to stall a potential military invasion of the island would end in failure.
Asked if a potential military strike on Taiwan could be thwarted by the US, Wenlong said his country’s forces would arrive on the island “in a very short amount of time”, effectively giving American troops “no chance to intervene in a Taiwan Strait conflict”.
The warning comes as tensions rise in the seas around China where the US and Japan are reported to have been holding joint military exercises.
The US also recently signed a $2.2bn (£1.8bn) weapons deal with Taipei to beef up its defences, angering Beijing, and has vowed to continue its freedom of navigation tours in the South China Sea.
In response, China is holding a mammoth six-day war games drill some 135 nautical miles north of Taiwan.
China considers the island as one of its own and has previously vowed to invade if it the self-governing statelet declared independence.
Wenlong told China’s state-controlled broadcaster CCTV that “before US forces arrive, we will have completed all our combat tasks” in the event of an invasion.
“The current drills a short distance away [from Taiwan] could be considered a routine exercise, but I think they’re specially targeted [at Taiwan],” Wenlong continued.
He said the exercises were a “serious warning” to Taiwan to stop military engagements with the US.
President Xi Jinping has pledged a “complete reunification” with Taiwan when he delivered a speech to mark 100 years of the Chinese Communist party.
The war of words continued on Monday when China threatened to nuke Japan if it intervened in any such conflict.
The communist republic said that it would declare “full-scale war” against Japan – mere days before the Olympics are set to kick off in Tokyo – if the Taiwan disagreement escalates.
Any invasion would represent a serious escalation of hostilities and could drag in the US through its pact to defend Taiwan.
Washington’s regional allies such as South Korea, Japan and Australia could also be sucked into a conflict as would Nato forces such as the UK because the US is a member of the alliance.
But a video channel, allegedly approved by the Chinese Communist Party with close ties to the People’s Liberation Army, took the anger to the next level.
In the new video now deleted, a narrator said: “We will use nuclear bombs first. We will use nuclear bombs continuously.
“We will do this until Japan declares unconditional surrender for the second time.”
“When we liberate Taiwan, if Japan dares to intervene by force – even if it only deploys one soldier, one plane or one ship – we will not only return fire but also wage full-scale war against Japan itself.”
Japanese Deputy Prime Minister Taro Aso said his troops would “defend Taiwan, under our alliance with the US”.
WAR OF WORDS
The latest military drills comes as the US continues to conduct freedom of navigation operations in the region.
Last week, China claims it “drove away” a US warship that “illegally” entered disputed waters as its military accused Joe Biden of “provocative actions”.
The USS Benfold entered contested waters in the South China Sea near the Paracel Islands on Monday – which Beijing claims as its territory.
The southern theatre of command of the People’s Liberation Army says the destroyer entered the area without China’s approval, violating its sovereignty and undermining the stability of the South China Sea.
“We urge the United States to immediately stop such provocative actions,” it said in a statement.
It comes five years after the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague ruled that China had no historic claim over the South China Sea – which Beijing said it would ignore.
The islands are claimed by China, Taiwan and Vietnam, which require either permission or advance notification before a military vessel passes through.
OPERATION INVADE TAIWAN
An article in China’s state-controlled publication has offered a glimpse of a terrifying three-stage plan to invade Taiwan.
The first stage would see DF-16 short-range ballistic missile attacks pulverising airports, early warning radar, anti-air missile bases, and command centres across the island.
The article states: “The attacks against Taiwan’s airports would continue until [Chinese] surface troops had accomplished an assault landing.”
Following this China’s H-6 bombers and J-16 fighter jets would attack naval ports, although the facilities would not be “completely destroyed” so the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) could use them for a landing.
In the second stage, the article states YJ-91 and CJ-10 cruise missiles would be unleashed from land, warships and submarines.
Military bases, ammunition depots, communications infrastructure and key road junctions would be crippled.
Drones would then be dispatched to assess the damage.
Finally, the article said warships and land-based rocket forces would wipe-out any remaining obstacles so the military’s marine corps and amphibious landing troops would safely land.
This was the second time the publication has outlined a scenario for an attack on Taiwan.
Last year it detailed how an assault on the island’s defence systems could occur to coincide with the start of the independence-leaning president Tsai Ing-wen’s second term.