Obama administration kills F-16 deal with Taiwan
China has never recognized Taiwan as a free and independent nation and has maintained that military action against the island nation of 24 million people would their legal right. Only the fear of American intervention and Taiwan's superior military technology has held Communist China in check, however recent events point to the very real possibility that China may be ready to re-take their lost province.
Defense News reports:
Bowing to Chinese pressure, the U.S. will deny Taiwan's request for 66 new F-16C/D fighter aircraft, a Taiwan Ministry of National Defense (MND) official said. "We are disappointed in the United States," he said.
The Obama administration had been under pressure from China since announcing the 6.4 billion dollar deal in January 2010. The original agreement would have created roughly 16,000 jobs to fill the order and brought over $750 million in revenues into the U.S. Treasury.
Red China has been aggressively building its military capabilities in recent years. This military expansion has been strikingly evident to the world as this year alone the Chinese have been conducting tests for a new carrier killer missile (with a range of 2,700 km), completed test flights for their new J-20 stealth fighter and launched their first aircraft carrier.
In March it was revealed that People's Liberation Army (PLA) had begun deployment of their new DF-16 missiles for potential use against Taiwan. The DF-16 has a range of 800-1,000 km and will be replacing the older DF-15 missiles.
With the weakness of the Obama/Clinton foreign policy, the explosion of Chinese military capabilities and China's growing economic influence over American policy the future looks rather bleak for our friends in Taiwan.