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Is Taiwan's Military Really Ready to Take on China?

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发表于 1-8-2019 15:16:16 | 显示全部楼层 |阅读模式
James Holmes, Is Taiwan's Military Really Ready to Take on China? We asked one of the world's leading experts that very question.National Interest, Jan 6, 2019.
https://nationalinterest.org/blo ... dy-take-china-40682

Quote:

"Few—and by 'few' I mean 'no'—nations boast the diplomatic, economic and military resources and political artistry to get everything they want. That being the case, they survey the surroundings and devise a strategy for a world of many goals and scarce resources.

"The Republic of China—an island state under the shadow of a continental giant bent on absorbing it by means peaceful or violent * * * Self-discipline hasn’t always been the Taiwanese way. For example, strategists on the island have a habit of placing inordinate importance on defending outlying possessions, islands hard aboard the China coast and in the South China Sea. It strains credulity to think the ROC armed forces could defend the main island of Formosa while also holding offshore islands deep within waters and skies dominated by China's People's Liberation Army (PLA). The Taiwanese military would scatter air and sea assets all over the map in an attempt to do so * * * For political reasons, Taipei probably cannot publicly write off the islands

"So to estimate whether Taiwanese strategy comports with reality, gauge whether Taipei is taking a gimlet-eyed approach to fixing priorities or is trying to do everything, everywhere, with a slender inventory of diplomatic, economic and military resources. Small states under duress must decide what they want most, apply themselves single-mindedly to obtain it, and downgrade or triage the rest.

"Second, military power. The ROC armed forces are undergoing a cultural revolution and are moving in the right direction, if not at the pace friends of Taiwan might like. The cultural revolution is this. During the Cold War, the Taiwanese Navy and Air Force planned to rule the seas and skies adjoining Taiwanese territory [thanks to its quality, despite quantity]. * * * The notion that a few doughty ROC ships and planes would take to the sea and air and beat back the PLA has been under strain since the 1970s when the United States withdrew formal diplomatic recognition from the Republic of China. No longer could Taipei count on that allied support when the chips were down [a phrase derived from gambling].

"In short, the PLA has narrowed if not abolished the Taiwanese military's technological advantage while also remaining far superior in brute numbers. The islanders may still hold an edge in tactical skill and élan, but, at some point, mainland forces will prevail by weight of numbers amplified by gee-whiz technology.

"ROC officialdom seems to understand this, but no shock to the system has discredited the old memes. That being the case, the machine tends to adapt by increments. * * * The meme is giving way—but at a glacial bureaucratic pace. * * * To evaluate Taiwan’s defenses, ask whether Taipei is asking too much of the armed forces

"James Holmes is JC Wylie Chair of Maritime Strategy at the Naval War College and coauthor of Defending the Strait (Brookings, 2011). The views voiced here are his alone.

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 楼主| 发表于 1-8-2019 15:20:07 | 显示全部楼层
Note:
(a) gimlet (tool)
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gimlet_(tool)
(sectional heading: "Use as a metaphor")
(b) doughty (adj; Did You Know?)
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/doughty
is pronounced completely different from the noun dough.
(c) élan (n)
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/élan
(Did You Know?: "We had, however, 'elance,' a verb meaning 'to hurl' that was used specifically for throwing lances and darts. 'Elance' derived down the line from Middle French (s')eslancer ('to rush or dash'), itself from lancer, meaning 'to hurl.' With the decline of lance-throwing, we tossed out 'elance' a century and half ago. Just about that time we found 'élan,' a noun that traces to '(s')eslancer')

Very few online English dictionaries has "elance."
(i) Oxforddictionaries.com does not have it.
(ii)
(A) elance (transitive verb; etymology: "French élancer, from Middle French (s') eslancer to rush, from es- (from Latin ex-) + lancer to hurl, launch")
: "archaic : THROW  <elance a spear>"
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/elance
(no pronunciation)
(B) (Modern) French-English dictionary:
* élancer (verb; [prefix] é- [away] +‎ [verb] lancer [to throw, to launch]): "(reflexive) to dash forward, to throw oneself at"
https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/élancer
(iii) elance: "EL'ANCE [accent?], verb transitive To throw or shoot; to hurl; to dart <While thy unerring hand elanced--a dart>"  
Webster's Dictionary 1828.
webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/elance
(iv) elance
https://www.collinsdictionary.com/us/dictionary/english/elance
(pronunciation; Trends of 'elance': since 1755)

The Trend shows "elance" is Modern English.

These four -- (A) to (D) -- are the only four I find in online English dictionaries.
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