China has no plans to invade Taiwan in the next two years. This was announced by Under Secretary of Defense for Political Affairs Colin Kahl, noting that the Pentagon has not changed its assessments on this issue, Politico reports.
Last week, Beijing conducted an unprecedented series of military exercises in response to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taipei.
Kahl's comments that the Pentagon does not think China will invade Taiwan anytime soon reflect attempts by the Biden administration to downplay the exercises, with officials saying they are more bragging rights than a sign of military activity.
Kahl condemned China's attempt to "salami slice their way into a new status quo" by repeatedly crossing the median line. "Really, it’s the activities in the strait itself, the sheer number of maritime and air assets that are crossing over this kind of de facto centerline, creeping closer to Taiwan’s shores," Kahl said. "It’s clear that Beijing is trying to create a kind of new normal with the goal of trying to coerce Taiwan but also frankly to coerce the international community given the importance of the Taiwan Strait to the global economy," he added.
Kahl said China's reaction to Pelosi's visit was a fabricated crisis, adding that US representatives regularly visit Taiwan. “Our policy has not changed, it is support for the status quo,” Kahl said. “China’s policy is what’s changed.”