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Taiwan Troops to Simulate Losing Contact With Central Command in War

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The Taiwanese military will simulate a war scenario in which its units have completely lost contact with their central command and have to operate on their own.

The simulation is part of a revamped Han Kuang Exercise beginning next month to focus on testing effective operational plans instead of traditional drills.

According to the island’s defense ministry, troops will rehearse operating under a decentralized command structure wherein they have to make their own judgment calls.

This would allow the Taiwanese military to evaluate how ready its soldiers are to launch counter-attacks without orders from the top.

During the drill, troops are expected to follow Taipei’s updated rules of engagement outlining in which situations they are authorized to use weapons and ammunition.

“For instance, if communication with higher levels is interrupted and attacks by (Chinese) aircraft, ships or missiles occur, grass-roots missile companies can decide whether to launch missiles based on the rules of engagement,” a military source told South China Morning Post.

Revamped Exercise

The Taiwanese military will attempt to make the upcoming Han Kuang Exercise as close as possible to actual combat.

This is to “familiarize all units with real combat environments and simulations” in the face of increasing enemy threats, said Admiral Mei Chia-shu, chief of the general staff.

To do this, Taiwanese soldiers will no longer be given a “script” to follow and special forces will not need to simulate the role of an attacking force anymore.

Additionally, some drills will be conducted at night, “as the enemy could strike any time of the day.”

The defense ministry has also made it clear that fewer live-fire exercises will be shown to the media, just enough to keep the public informed about Taiwan’s latest military capabilities.

Preparing for China

The significant shift in focus comes as Taiwan braces for a potential full-scale invasion by China “in 2027.”

Beijing, which split with Taipei at the end of a civil war in 1949, views the small island nation as its breakaway province with which it must eventually be reunified.

Last month, the People’s Liberation Army released an unsettling video that shows how it could potentially attack Taiwan.

Chinese Defense Minister Dong Jun also said his military is ready to “forcefully” stop Taiwan independence.

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