1673780776 US could suffer heavy casualties if China invades Taiwan war

US could suffer heavy casualties if China invades Taiwan, war games show


A Chinese invasion of Taiwan would bring heavy casualties not only to China and Taiwan, but also to the US and Japan, one of Washington’s top think tanks found after running wargame simulations mimicking a Chinese invasion of Taiwan in 2026.

Conducted by the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS), these war games ran through 24 scenarios of what an invasion might look like.

In the first three weeks of the invasion, more than 3,200 US forces would be killed in action, about half the casualties of the 20-year war in Iraq and Afghanistan. This precludes casualties that might occur in other theaters of operations such as the South China Sea. China would suffer the most casualties, losing about 10,000 in combat in the first three weeks of its invasion. According to the report, of the more than 30,000 Chinese survivors on Taiwan, an overwhelming majority would likely become prisoners by the end of the fighting.

Mark Cancian, the author behind the war games report, said the US needs to do more to strengthen Taiwan’s security in the Pacific and said the US could not send weapons after the invasion like it did in Ukraine. “Chinese air and naval capabilities are strong enough to prevent reinforcements from coming to Taiwan. So Taiwan needs to have all of its gear before the conflict starts,” Cancian told Fox News.

A pilot walks behind a helicopter with a Taiwanese flag
The US would suffer over 3,000 casualties in the first three weeks of the invasion, the simulation said. AP

Marines stand on a landing craft during a military exercise in the city of Kaohsiung, Taiwan
The war games state that China would lose 10,000 soldiers in the first three weeks of the invasion. AP


Naval officers stand guard near a decoy missile system
The war games report states that the US must increase its arms sales to Taiwan. AP

Japan has committed to a historic increase in defense spending. AP


Cancian said the US needs to speed up military supplies to Taiwan, particularly long-range bombers with long-range anti-ship missiles. “Our inventory of these missiles is very small. We’ll run out in just a few days. We need to build a lot more of that,” he warned.

Ninety percent of the coalition’s planes would be lost to Chinese missile strikes on the ground, not in the air. Stressing that it would be very important to build hardened shelters to protect the aircraft, Cancian urged Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, not to have hardened shelters to protect the aircraft. “The Chinese missiles would destroy these planes,” he said.

Japan is a crucial part of Taiwan’s defense. The US has bases in Japan, home of its attack aircraft. “They have relatively short legs. You have to get close to influence the fighting over Taiwan. So the connection with Japan is absolutely crucial for Taiwan’s defense,” Cancian said.

Japan’s Prime Minister Fumio Kishida met President Biden in the Oval Office of the White House on Friday amid growing fears China may be able to invade Taiwan in the coming years. “Japan and the United States are currently facing the most challenging and complex security environment in recent history,” Koshida told Biden.

Kishida was accompanied in Washington by his secretaries of state and defense. The delegation worked out plans to build airstrips on uninhabited Japanese islands closer to Taiwan. Japan announced plans to buy more Tomahawk missiles and long-range cruise missiles from the US

Japan has committed to a historic 2% of GDP increase in defense spending over the next five years, making it the world’s third largest defense budget. This is a major break with Japan’s post-WWII pacifist military strategy.

The US and Japan announced a new space security agreement and the deployment of a smaller, more advanced Marine Corps regiment with advanced intelligence and anti-ship missile capabilities in Okinawa, Japan.

The 12th Marine Regiment, already on Okinawa, will become the 12th Marine Littoral Regiment by FY2025. Although no new units will be added to Okinawa under the agreement, it will transform the 12th Marine Regiment into a smaller, more mobile unit. It includes a combat team with an anti-ship missile battery, a logistics battalion and an air defense battalion. This would reduce the number of marines on Okinawa, currently about 3,400 marines and sailors, to about 2,000. “The idea is that it can contribute to this air war in the western Pacific,” Cancian said.

After a 2+2 meeting with Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin and their Japanese counterparts on Wednesday, Austin explained the new capabilities of this naval regiment. “We will arm this new formation with advanced intelligence surveillance, surveillance and reconnaissance, anti-ship and transport capabilities relevant to the current and future threat environments,” he said.

The war games helped highlight China’s capabilities in an unclassified space. “For a long time, Chinese military capabilities have not been very impressive. In particular, their air and sea power was weak,” Cancian said. “That’s not true now. They built both up to a considerable amount. Therefore, it will be important to strengthen these US capabilities.”