The latest evidence for this came in the form of massive military exercises involving fighter and bomber aircraft as well as dozens of warships, according to reports on Sunday.
Chinese state-owned media Global Times posted on Twitter: "BREAKING: PLA Eastern Theater Command held cross-service joint alert patrol & combat drills in waters, aerial areas around Taiwan island on Sunday focusing on land attack, sea assault, in a move countering collusion between external forces and TW secessionists: spokesperson."
BREAKING: PLA Eastern Theater Command held cross-service joint alert patrol & combat drills in waters, aerial areas around Taiwan island on Sunday focusing on land attack, sea assault, in a move countering collusion between external forces and TW secessionists: spokesperson pic.twitter.com/R57NQQnwo4
— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) January 8, 2023
Conservative podcaster Jack Posobiec noted on Twitter: "BREAKING: China just launched a massive sea and air combat exercise around Taiwan island They say their goal is to counter external forces colluding with 'Taiwan secessionists.'"
The drills come days after Biden's National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan, spoke with Steve Inskeep, host of NPR's Morning Edition, on Thursday and said that it will take "hard work" to avoid military conflict with China over Taiwan, a self-governed country that China claims is part of its greater domain under their one-China principle.
The one-China principle originates out of the People's Republic of China and states that Taiwan is part of greater China. The one-China policy is the diplomatic positioning from the US and allies that acknowledge Taiwan as technically a part of China, even while diplomatic relations exist with the internal government of Tawain, called the Republic of China.
According to CNN, which quoted Taiwan's defense ministry, "China sent 28 warplanes across the median line of the Taiwan Strait on Sunday as Beijing conducted its first large-scale military exercises around the island this year."
"The 28 People’s Liberation Army (PLA) planes were among 57 spotted near Taiwan, the ministry said, adding they included J-10, J-11, J-16 and Su-30 fighters, H-6 bombers, three drones and an early warning and reconnaissance aircraft," the report noted further.
In response, Taiwan scrambled its own fighters, as well as warships and activated land-based missile systems, since it is never certain what China's intentions really are.
“The exercise focused on land strikes, sea assaults and other subjects, aiming to test the troops’ joint combat capability and resolutely counter the collusive and provocative acts of the external forces and the ‘Taiwan independence’ separatist forces,” according to a statement posted on the state-run China Military Online."
China's military drills came on the heels of a U.S. Navy destroyer, the USS Chung-Hoon, transitioning the Taiwan Strait, the narrow waters separating the island from the mainland. The U.S. warship “transited through a corridor in the Strait that is beyond the territorial sea of any coastal state,” a US 7th Fleet statement said, adding that its route “demonstrates the United States’ commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific.”
Chinese state media also noted that the large-scale drills came in response to the Biden regime's commitment to a potential $180 million arms deal with Taipei. The sale of vehicle-launched anti-tank munition-laying systems “serves U.S. national, economic, and security interests by supporting the recipient’s continuing efforts to modernize its armed forces and to maintain a credible defensive capability,” a US State Department statement said in a statement.