A Question of Balance: Political Context and Military Aspects of the China-Taiwan Dispute
RAND CORP ARLINGTON VA NATIONAL SECURITY RESEARCH DIV
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The military balance across the Taiwan Strait is changing in ways that make more complex both the set of operational challenges associated with defending Taiwan against a possible Chinese attack and the strategic imperative of shaping Chinese behavior so that no such attack ever occurs. This report documents a follow-on effort to one published in 2000 Shlapak, Orletsky, and Wilson, 2000, reassessing and expanding that earlier studys snapshot of the cross-strait balance, looking ahead to the 2010-2015 period. As in the 2000 study, we employed a mix of theater-level combat modeling, simpler mathematical models, historical analysis, interviews with experts, and qualitative judgment. The conclusions of the present work have proven to be substantially less optimistic for the Taiwan and U.S. side.
- Government and Political Science