US to resort to Ukraine method to fast-track $500mn arms to Taiwan
Washington will use presidential authority to send a large military package to Taipei directly for US army stocks.
The United States President Joe Biden will tap into his executive powers to fast-track a $500 million military package that is being prepared for Taiwan and will be supplied from US military stocks, Bloomberg reported on Friday citing sources.
Presidential Drawdown Authority grants the American leader ability to put together a speedy weapons package and send it to foreign allies in cases deemed as emergencies with a significant cut to the delivery process after approval.
Read more: China would swiftly gain air superiority over Taiwan: Pentagon leaks
The program is currently being used to rapidly send Kiev arms and other military hardware to support the West's fight against Russia in Ukraine.
Last month, US Indo-Pacific Command dispatched more than 200 troops to Taiwan to help the island's armed forces with training as Washington further breaches Beijing's "One China" policy and escalates tensions in the Asian giant's vicinity.
Despite the fact that Washington cut diplomatic relations with Taipei in 1979, the US continues to send a small number of military trainers to Taiwan and militarize the island through arms sales.
The People's Liberation Army of China conducted in April extensive live fire training in and near Taiwan, following a visit to the US by Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, who was welcomed in California by US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
Read more: Countering Beijing in S. China Sea key topic in US, Philippines talks
China has repeatedly expressed its firm will to fight against "Taiwan’s independence" and promote reunification of the island with the homeland.
Chinese Defense Ministry Spokesperson Tan Kefei said last March that "China demands that the United States stop selling arms to Taiwan and military contacts with Taipei, stop interfering in the Taiwan issue and aggravate tensions in the Taiwan Strait."
Read more: China cannot vow not to use force against separatists: Envoy
Arm Taiwan 'to the teeth'
A tabletop wargame conducted by Congress a few weeks ago concluded that the United States was unable to hold ground against Chinese forces launching a military campaign on Taiwan.
The exercise came as the Congressional House Select Committee on China aims to exert more pressure in the coming months to increase military aid to Taipei.
"The United States needs to deliver on our promises and clear the $19 billion weapons backlog to Taiwan, conduct enhanced joint military training, and reinforce our military posture throughout the region," committee chief Wisconsin Rep. Mike Gallagher said then.
"We are well within the window of maximum danger for a Chinese Communist Party invasion of Taiwan," and the United States must take quick action to deter Beijing, which includes "arming Taiwan to the teeth before any crisis begins," he added.