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US senators seek to force fighter aircraft sale to Taiwan

no_name

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Taiwan Crash SpArKs Calls for U.S. F-16 Sale

TAIPEI - The crash of two Vietnam War-era jets in Taiwan that killed three sparked calls Wednesday for the U.S. to sell the island new planes and save its pilots from "risking their lives" in old aircraft.

The pleas from officials and lawmakers for advanced aircraft to defend the exposed island from its giant neighbor China came as rescuers located the wreckage of the crashed jets in eastern Taiwan. All three pilots were killed.

"Flying such an aircraft is like asking a 90-year-old man to do 100 push-ups", said Lin Yu-fang, a member of the parliamentary defense committee.

The entire F-5 fleet, around 60 jets which analysts say lack both global positioning systems and advanced aviation guidance systems, has now been grounded pending an investigation.

The RF-5 surveillance aircraft and a twin-seat F-5F trainer vanished from radar screens at 7:52 pm (1152 GMT) Tuesday, 13 minutes after they took off on a training mission from an airbase near Hualien, the defense ministry said.

The military confirmed September 14 that rescuers had discovered debris and body parts where the two jets had apparently crashed into the side of a mountain.

Military officers said the incident highlighted Taiwan's need to purchase new fighters to replace its decades-old, U.S.-built F-5 fleet.

"All the F-5s have been grounded for a thorough safety check as investigation is under way. As of now, it is still not clear if the accident was the result of mechanical failure, weather or human error," defense ministry spokesman David Lo told AFP.

"This type of jet has served the air force for more than 35 years ... We really don't want our pilots to fly them risking their lives."

Two air force pilots were killed in the last crash when an F-5F ploughed into the middle of the Taiwan Strait in 2009.

The backbone of Taiwan's air force also consists of 126 Indigenous Defense Fighters, 146 U.S.-made F-16 A/Bs and 56 French-made Mirage 2000-5s.

Taipei applied in 2007 to buy 66 F-16 C/D fighters, which have better radars and more powerful weapon systems than the F-16 A/Bs, in response to China's growing military muscle, but Washington has yet to agree the sale.

"We hope the United States will sell the F-16 C/Ds as soon as possible," Lo said.

Defense News reported in August that Washington had told Taiwan it will not sell the jets, but both U.S. and Taiwan officials have insisted no final decision has been made, despite strong Chinese resistance to the sales.

Washington recognizes Beijing rather than Taipei but remains a leading arms supplier to the island.

Taipei has defended the proposed arms deal as Beijing's rapid military modernization plans have tipped the military balance in favor of the People's Liberation Army.

"It will also help maintain the balance between the two sides as Taiwan needs to have sufficient defense to have the confidence to negotiate with China," said Shuai Hua-ming of the ruling Kuomintang party.

Ties between China and Taiwan have improved since Ma Ying-jeou of the China-friendly Kuomintang party came to power in 2008 on promises of ramping up trade links and allowing in more Chinese tourists.

But Beijing has refused to renounce the use of force against Taiwan even though the island has ruled itself for more than six decades since their split in 1949 at the end of a civil war.


Taiwan Crash Sparks Calls for U.S. F-16 Sale - Defense News

Nice pun with the title.
 

Machoman

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Two US senators introduced legislation on Monday demanding President Barack Obama sell Taiwan no fewer than 66 advanced F-16 fighter jets despite Beijing's fierce objections.

"This sale is a win-win, in strengthening the national security of our friend Taiwan as well as our own, and supporting tens of thousands of jobs in the US," said Republican Senator John Cornyn.

Democratic Senator Robert Menendez said the Taiwan Relations Act, a 1979 law that requires Washington to ensure Taiwan can defend itself, "compelled" the sale and warned failure to go through with the deal could cost US jobs.

"Delaying the decision to sell F-16s to Taiwan could result in the closure of the F-16 production line, which would cost New Jersey 750 manufacturing jobs," said Menendez.

The legislation, which does not yet have a House counterpart, states that "the President shall carry out the sale of no fewer than 66 F-16C/D multirole fighter aircraft to Taiwan."

But while the US Constitution gives congress power over "commerce with foreign nations," the measure would be an unprecedented effort to force a military sale not endorsed by the president.

Taiwan applied to the US in 2007 to buy the 66 F-16C/Ds, improved versions of the F-16A/Bs that the island's air force now uses, claiming that the new jets were needed to counter China's growing military clout.

US magazine Defense News reported recently that Washington has told Taiwan it will not sell the jets, but both US and Taiwan officials have insisted no final decision has been made.

Beijing considers Taiwan a part of its territory awaiting reunification with the mainland, by force if necessary.

Washington recognizes Beijing rather than Taipei but remains a leading arms supplier to the island.

China, whose state media has denounced the possible fighter jet sale, reacted furiously in January 2010 when the Obama administration announced a $6.4 billion arms deal with Taiwan.

But "saying no here would mean granting Communist China substantial sway over American foreign policy, putting us on a very slippery slope," warned Cornyn.

The 2010 package included Patriot missiles, Black Hawk helicopters and equipment for Taiwan's existing F-16 fleet, but no submarines or new fighter jets.
 

lem34

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the americans see no contradiction in the fact that they recognise china but supply taiwan with weapons. Typical american doublespeak andd or hypocracy.
 

danger007

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Two US senators introduced legislation on Monday demanding President Barack Obama sell Taiwan no fewer than 66 advanced F-16 fighter jets despite Beijing's fierce objections.

"This sale is a win-win, in strengthening the national security of our friend Taiwan as well as our own, and supporting tens of thousands of jobs in the US," said Republican Senator John Cornyn.

Democratic Senator Robert Menendez said the Taiwan Relations Act, a 1979 law that requires Washington to ensure Taiwan can defend itself, "compelled" the sale and warned failure to go through with the deal could cost US jobs.

"Delaying the decision to sell F-16s to Taiwan could result in the closure of the F-16 production line, which would cost New Jersey 750 manufacturing jobs," said Menendez.

The legislation, which does not yet have a House counterpart, states that "the President shall carry out the sale of no fewer than 66 F-16C/D multirole fighter aircraft to Taiwan."

But while the US Constitution gives congress power over "commerce with foreign nations," the measure would be an unprecedented effort to force a military sale not endorsed by the president.

Taiwan applied to the US in 2007 to buy the 66 F-16C/Ds, improved versions of the F-16A/Bs that the island's air force now uses, claiming that the new jets were needed to counter China's growing military clout.

US magazine Defense News reported recently that Washington has told Taiwan it will not sell the jets, but both US and Taiwan officials have insisted no final decision has been made.

Beijing considers Taiwan a part of its territory awaiting reunification with the mainland, by force if necessary.

Washington recognizes Beijing rather than Taipei but remains a leading arms supplier to the island.

China, whose state media has denounced the possible fighter jet sale, reacted furiously in January 2010 when the Obama administration announced a $6.4 billion arms deal with Taiwan.

But "saying no here would mean granting Communist China substantial sway over American foreign policy, putting us on a very slippery slope," warned Cornyn.

The 2010 package included Patriot missiles, Black Hawk helicopters and equipment for Taiwan's existing F-16 fleet, but no submarines or new fighter jets.
i don't think Taiwan will get F-16's
 

CardSharp

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the americans see no contradiction in the fact that they recognise china but supply taiwan with weapons. Typical american doublespeak andd or hypocracy.
The US responsibility to defend Taiwan came as much from happenstance from the Chinese civil war as a deliberate policy to unbalance the PRC.
 

Ammyy

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Seems all neighbor of China really love them a lot.

And here people calling India a bad neighbor :lol:
 

SpArK

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Taiwan Crash SpArKs Calls for U.S. F-16 Sale

TAIPEI - The crash of two Vietnam War-era jets in Taiwan that killed three sparked calls Wednesday for the U.S. to sell the island new planes and save its pilots from "risking their lives" in old aircraft.

The pleas from officials and lawmakers for advanced aircraft to defend the exposed island from its giant neighbor China came as rescuers located the wreckage of the crashed jets in eastern Taiwan. All three pilots were killed.

"Flying such an aircraft is like asking a 90-year-old man to do 100 push-ups", said Lin Yu-fang, a member of the parliamentary defense committee.

The entire F-5 fleet, around 60 jets which analysts say lack both global positioning systems and advanced aviation guidance systems, has now been grounded pending an investigation.

The RF-5 surveillance aircraft and a twin-seat F-5F trainer vanished from radar screens at 7:52 pm (1152 GMT) Tuesday, 13 minutes after they took off on a training mission from an airbase near Hualien, the defense ministry said.

The military confirmed September 14 that rescuers had discovered debris and body parts where the two jets had apparently crashed into the side of a mountain.

Military officers said the incident highlighted Taiwan's need to purchase new fighters to replace its decades-old, U.S.-built F-5 fleet.

"All the F-5s have been grounded for a thorough safety check as investigation is under way. As of now, it is still not clear if the accident was the result of mechanical failure, weather or human error," defense ministry spokesman David Lo told AFP.

"This type of jet has served the air force for more than 35 years ... We really don't want our pilots to fly them risking their lives."

Two air force pilots were killed in the last crash when an F-5F ploughed into the middle of the Taiwan Strait in 2009.

The backbone of Taiwan's air force also consists of 126 Indigenous Defense Fighters, 146 U.S.-made F-16 A/Bs and 56 French-made Mirage 2000-5s.

Taipei applied in 2007 to buy 66 F-16 C/D fighters, which have better radars and more powerful weapon systems than the F-16 A/Bs, in response to China's growing military muscle, but Washington has yet to agree the sale.

"We hope the United States will sell the F-16 C/Ds as soon as possible," Lo said.

Defense News reported in August that Washington had told Taiwan it will not sell the jets, but both U.S. and Taiwan officials have insisted no final decision has been made, despite strong Chinese resistance to the sales.

Washington recognizes Beijing rather than Taipei but remains a leading arms supplier to the island.

Taipei has defended the proposed arms deal as Beijing's rapid military modernization plans have tipped the military balance in favor of the People's Liberation Army.

"It will also help maintain the balance between the two sides as Taiwan needs to have sufficient defense to have the confidence to negotiate with China," said Shuai Hua-ming of the ruling Kuomintang party.

Ties between China and Taiwan have improved since Ma Ying-jeou of the China-friendly Kuomintang party came to power in 2008 on promises of ramping up trade links and allowing in more Chinese tourists.

But Beijing has refused to renounce the use of force against Taiwan even though the island has ruled itself for more than six decades since their split in 1949 at the end of a civil war.


Taiwan Crash Sparks Calls for U.S. F-16 Sale - Defense News
 

Stormweaver

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In my opinion, why the US hasn't been selling advanced warplanes/weapon systems to Taiwan of late:

-The US wants to make sure that Taiwan is weak enough so that it cannot declare independence unilaterally. Since US is, by law [am I correct here?], required to protect Taiwan, it doesn't want to get involved in another cold war/shooting war scenario.

-Secondly, the interesting symbiotic relationship between China and US prevents the US from antagonizing China. China on the other hand reciprocates and keeps the whole unification issue on the backburner.

- Lastly, China doesn't have the amphibious assault capabilities as yet to take over Taiwan or impose a naval blockade, so maybe Washington has decided to just let whole thing be as is.


edit: missed a line
 

CardSharp

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