Most Taiwanese willing to take up arms against a Chinese invasion
The latest survey suggests that some 61.4 per cent would fight. Voters for the Kuomintang, a pro-Beijing party, are the most recalcitrant. About 68.5 per cent of Taiwanese hope to improve relations with the Chinese. The US expects a Chinese attack against the island by 2030.
Taipei (AsiaNews) – A majority of Taiwanese are ready to take up arms in the event of a Chinese invasion, this according to a survey released yesterday by the Association of Chinese Elite Leadership.
According to the study, 61.4 per cent of adult respondents said that they would fight the Chinese in case of an attack, while 25.1 per cent said they would not.
Willingness to fight is lower among Taiwanese who vote for the Kuomintang, a pro-Beijing nationalist party, with 49.8 per cent saying they would not fight. Similarly, 47.6 per cent of Taiwan People's Party supporters also said they would not fight.
Looking at Ukrainians’ resistance to Russia’s invasion, several observers question the willingness of the Taiwanese to stop any Chinese aggression.
Others note that 61.4 per cent is higher than a survey by WIN/Gallup International conducted in Europe in 2015, which found that 59 per cent Ukrainians were willing to fight for their country in the event of Russian military action.
The ability of Ukraine’s Armed Forces and civilian volunteers to fully engage an army as powerful as Russia's has in all likelihood impacted Taiwan's perception of China's peril.
The poll also found that 68.5 per cent of Taiwanese hope to improve relations with Beijing.
China considers Taiwan a “rebel province” and has never ruled out seizing it by force.
The island has been de facto independent since 1949 when Chiang Kai-shek's nationalist forces fled the mainland after losing the civil war with the communists. Since then, it has claimed to represent the Republic of China founded in 1912.
On 10 May, Avril Haines, director of US intelligence, told Congress in Washington that the threat of a Chinese invasion of Taiwan by 2030 was “acute”.