The USS Higgins and the Canadian HMSC Vancouver transited the Taiwan Strait on Tuesday amid heightened US-China tensions over Taiwan’s political status, the Navy’s 7th Fleet said in a press release.
“Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Higgins (DDG 76), in cooperation with Royal Canadian Navy Halifax-class frigate HMCS Vancouver (FFH 331), conducted a routine Taiwan Strait transit Sept. 20 (local time) through waters where high seas freedoms of navigation and overflight apply in accordance with international law,” the release said.
It added that the transit demonstrated “the commitment of the United States and our allies and partners to a free and open Indo-Pacific.”
Earlier, Rep. Mike Gallagher said that any potential war over Taiwan would be a protracted conflict and require both the United States and Taiwan have a large number of munitions prepositioned to win it.
“We have to assume that any war over Taiwan would be a protracted conflict which not only means American forces will go Winchester rapidly but Taiwan itself will need large stores of munitions pre-positioned and ready to replace losses ahead of time,” Gallagher said during a Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments event.
“And, in my opinion, that only magnifies the need for a massive pre-war expansion in munitions productions [in the United States].”
Now that the US is no longer a party to the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF), Washington is not precluded from massing the amount of firepower that would be required to deter or, if necessary, defeat a Chinese invasion of Taiwan and hence has an opportunity to “reestablish conventional deterrence in the Indo-Pacific in the critical theater,” Gallagher added.
Ground-launched missiles represent the best chance for the US to avoid a disastrous defeat in a Taiwan war over the coming decade, according to the Republican lawmaker.
Gallagher’s comments on Taiwan come after President Joe Biden said during an interview with CBS News on Sunday that US forces would defend Taiwan if China attacked the island.
The Chinese Embassy in Washington said in a statement to Sputnik on Monday that Beijing expresses strong dissatisfaction and opposition to Biden’s continued statements that the US would defend Taiwan from Chinese forces.
- Via Sputnik News Agency
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