OAN Roy Francis
9:14 AM PT – Thursday, February 23, 2023
The United States is reportedly planning on sending troops to the island of Taiwan as tensions with China continue to rise.
Between 100 to 200 troops are preparing to deploy to Taiwan, drastically increasing the number of U.S. troops on the island, which was 30 only one year ago according to the Washington Post. The number of troops is to include the National Guard, Special Operations, and U.S. Marines.
Defense Department spokesperson Lieutenant Colonel Marty Meiners spoke to Fox News on the planned deployment of military personnel to the island.
“We don’t have a comment on specific operations, engagements, or training, but I would highlight that our support for, and defense relationship with, Taiwan remains aligned against the current threat posed by the People’s Republic of China,” he said. “Our commitment to Taiwan is rock-solid and contributes to the maintenance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and within the region.”
Officials revealed that the deployment has been months in the planning, which would pre-date the Chinese spy balloon incident, and the increased tensions over the Ukraine war. This number of troops will mark the largest presence of U.S. troops on the island in decades.
The primary purpose of the troops will be to train the Taiwanese military on U.S. equipment and military systems, and how to counter a potential offensive by the Chinese military.
Beijing has denounced the Biden administration for increasing the U.S. cooperation with Taiwan recently, as well as accusing them of breaking previous commitments to “maintain unofficial relations with Taipei.”
China has also been escalating tensions around Taiwan by frequently sending ships and aircrafts into Taiwanese territory. Beijing has also said that the planned trip by Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) to Taiwan in the near future goes against the interest of both nations and will only escalate tensions.
China does not recognize Taiwan’s independence and wants to bring under the control of the mainland. Taiwan had split from China in 1949 after a civil war, with the only remaining connection remaining between the two being trade and investments.