| 25 July 2024, Thursday |

Taiwan studies Israel-Hamas war to learn lessons, avoid similar conflict with China

Taiwan, which China regards as its own territory, has established a task force to learn from the unexpected assault by Hamas on Israel.
Talking to media on Thursday, Defence Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng said that intelligence is key to preventing a war.
Hamas’s surprise attack on Israel and the resulting conflict has focused attention on the possibility of a Chinese attack on Taiwan. The island nation faces constant pressure from Beijing. Since August 2022, it has seen two major sets of Chinese war games near its territory.
When asked by reporters about the lessons Taiwan has learnt from Israel-Hamas conflict, the Taiwanese Defence Minister said that “the initial (lesson) is that intelligence work is very important. With intelligence, many countermeasures can be made. A war can even be avoided.”

“It is everyone’s shared expectations to avoid a war,” said Chiu, as reported by Reuters.

Even as the island works to counter China’s military threats, the Taiwan minister said that even as Taiwan’s military works to boost its combat readiness, it will not initiate a conflict. He stated that the ongoing conflict demonstrated the horror of war.

Constant threat
During a forum in Taipei on Wednesday, former Australian prime minister Scott Morrison voiced his support for Taiwan’s strengthening of defences.

He said that in light of China’s threats against the island nation, it is essential for Taiwan to strengthen its resilience. He also said that Taiwan needs to show “urgency” and do more.

Addressing an audience that included Taiwan Foreign Minister Joseph Wu, Morrison said: “Such urgency must also be demonstrated by Taiwan itself. Israel is an even smaller nation than Taiwan and likewise lives under constant threat.”

“But they spend considerably more proportionally on its defence than here in Taiwan,” he added.

Taiwan’s government has proposed designating around 2.5 per cent of the country’s overall GDP to defence next year. In comparison, as per Stockholm International Peace Research Institute, Israel’s defence budget this year amounted to 4.5 per cent of its GDP.

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