U Ming Lee Was Wrong: China Will Invade and Crush Taiwan Imminently

Adebayo Adeniran
4 min readMay 9

Read on..

The might of the biggest bully on the block. Image by Lian Rodriguez via Pexels

U-Ming Lee is a man for whom I have profound respect.

There are players on this platform whose articles are measured, thoughtful and dripping with insights and our protagonist is definitely one of them.

And it is no exaggeration to state that I actually do miss his absence from this space or is it the algorithm messing with my head?

But even the best of us do get it wrong from time to time.

So why have I written this?

China’s imminent invasion of Taiwan.

A little over a year ago, Mr. Lee wrote a brilliant piece on the subject matter of China invading Taiwan.

In it, the author made a highly persuasive case detailing the reasons why the People’s Republic of China will not undertake an invasion in 2022, 2023 or 2024 for that matter:

According to official figures, Taiwan has approximately 88,000 active-duty personnel. Compared to the People’s Liberation Army’s 2.3 million soldiers, this may not seem like much.

But the number of active-duty personnel underestimates the human resources that Taiwan has to commit to its defence. Taiwan has always had an extensive reservist programme, having recognised the threat of forcible reunification with mainland China for the entirety of its existence.

About 2.3 million people serve as military reservists in Taiwan. Of course, not all of these reservists will be ready and available to be called up for military service.

Indeed, Taiwanese officials have previously expressed concern that a significant proportion of that reserve force had received no formal training in the eight years since they were discharged.

To be conservative in our estimates, let’s assume that only 15% of reservists are called up and added to the full-time active-duty force. We now have a total defence force of 433,000 people.

Conventional wisdom holds that it takes three attackers to overwhelm one defender. Applying this 3:1 rule to an invasion of Taiwan implies that the attacking force will need 1.3 million soldiers.

Adebayo Adeniran

A lifelong bibliophile, who seeks to unleash his energy on as many subjects as possible