“Defeating a PLA attack would be far from easy or cheap, and being ready to do so will involve wrenching changes in the U.S. and Taiwanese defense establishments. But it is doable.

“To put it simply, defeating a Chinese invasion would require the U.S., Taiwan and any other engaged parties to cripple or destroy enough Chinese amphibious ships and transport aircraft to prevent the PLA from holding the island. For a country spending more than $700 billion a year on defense, this is a tractable problem, if America focuses on it.

“But the U.S. must do four things, urgently. First, deploy an intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance system to monitor Chinese airfields and ports of embarkation, and to target Chinese invasion forces should conflict erupt. Second, buy more long-range munitions, especially antiship weapons, and position them in the region at sea and in places like Guam, Japan and the Philippines. This would help make the U.S. ready to blunt the initial waves of the Chinese amphibious fleet and air-assault elements. Third, have powerful forces further back in the Pacific and beyond ready to reinforce those blunting forces. Fourth, routinely exercise these three components together to demonstrate to Chinese military planners that launching an attack would be unlikely to succeed…”

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