China has deployed 980 missiles against Taiwan
China has deployed about 980 missiles, positioned so that the whole of Taiwan is within their range, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) said on January 23.
Maj. Gen. Wang Cheng-hsiao, an MND intelligence official, noted that China had 190 ballistic missiles in 1996, a number that increased by 50 every year until the number reached 540 in 2003.
He said China then increased production and upgraded the capacity of the missiles, adding that 880 strategic ballistic misiles and over 100 cruise missiles are presently deployed.
He said Taiwan's military has continued to upgrade its combat readiness and combat capacity should China launch a first-strike attack, and that in the event of a Chinese missile attack, advanced jetfighters would be hidden in hangars or bunkers so that the air force would retain at least part of its combat capacity.
He disagreed with Bernard Cole, a professor of the National War College in Washington, who expressed concern in an article that Taiwan's air force could lose its air superiority in the Taiwan Strait as it has not moved forward while China's air force has been improving by leaps and bounds. Were China to launch a first round of missile attacks, the air force would no longer be able to provide adequate air defense, according to Cole.
Maj. Gen. Ke Hsi-hsiung, deputy director of the MND's Integrated Assessment Office, claimed that China's missiles are not as precise as has been thought. Taiwan's military intelligence believes that if China attacks with 70 percent of its missiles, Taiwan would retain over 50 percent of its combat capacity, Ke said, although he added that the figure could rise to more than 70 percent if measures to protect combat capacity are taken. He did not elaborate.
(Source: Central News Agency)