China has released a new documentary about the army’s preparations to attack Taiwan, which features soldiers vowing to sacrifice their lives if necessary, as Beijing continues to escalate its invective against the self-governing island.
The eight-part series “Chasing Dreams,” which aired last week on CCTV to commemorate the 96th anniversary of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA), features military exercises and testimonials from dozens of soldiers, several of whom express their willingness to perish in the event of an attack on Taiwan.
Taiwan, a self-governing democracy, is claimed by China as its own territory, to be conquered by force if necessary.
The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and state media frequently distribute propaganda materials and videos of military exercises. They are intended to incite rising Chinese nationalism and demonstrate military assurance against Taiwan and, implicitly, China’s relations with the United States. Despite the fact that the United States does not recognize Taiwan as a sovereign nation, it has pledged to aid Taiwan in the event of an invasion.
A $345 million military aid package was announced by the White House for Taiwan last month. Beijing criticized the move, which, according to experts, drew on principles learned from US military aid to Ukraine.
The documentary “Chasing Dreams” highlighted, among other things, the PLA’s “joint sword” exercises, which simulated assaults against Taiwan with pinpoint accuracy. In April, following President Tsai Ing-wen’s trip to the United States, the exercises were conducted around the self-governing island.
Pledging Unwavering Devotion: PLA Troops Pledge Sacrifice for Defense of Taiwan
Soldiers from various PLA divisions have vowed to sacrifice their lives in the event of a possible attack on Taiwan.
Zuo Feng, a frogman with the PLA navy’s minesweeper unit, stated, “If war broke out and the conditions were too difficult to safely remove the naval mines in actual combat, we would use our own bodies to clear a safe pathway for our [landing] forces.”
Li Peng, a pilot with the Wang Hai Squadron of the PLA air force, reiterated the statement, stating that his “fighter jet would be the last missile rushing towards the enemy if, in a real battle, I had used up all my ammunition”.
Fan Lizhong, the commander of a special tactics unit, stated in the docuseries that although it was difficult to lose comrades, he had to remain calm to respond to exigencies and always be prepared to fight.
In the documentary, Shandong, one of China’s three aircraft carriers, sails in formation with several other vessels.
In recent months, the PLA has repeatedly dispatched Shandong to the Taiwan Strait as a threat to Taiwan. PLA aircraft have also crossed the strait’s median line – an informal demarcation zone between China and Taiwan – relatively frequently over the past few years, particularly in response to Taiwanese and American exchanges that enraged Beijing.
Source: The Guardian