Since the Taiwan Strait Crisis of 1995–1996 this year, tensions between China and Taiwan have risen to their greatest level.
As a result, many analysts have argued that there is a real risk of conflict in the years to come. On October 16, President Xi Jinping declared that China would “never commit to renouncing the use of force” to annex Taiwan. This was said at the beginning of the 20th Communist Party Congress. His unprecedented third term as China’s leader was secured at the congress’ end, and he also gained supporters for the main party. By doing this, he will be able to maintain his control over the nation’s decision-making with no challenge. The unification of Taiwan with the mainland has been regularly mentioned as a goal by Xi, who may ultimately work toward its achievement to protect his legacy. In the coming years, he’ll almost probably take a harder line on Taiwan and perhaps stress how urgent it is to reunite the country. Many, including U.S. officials, have suggested that China could invade the island in 2027, which also happens to be the 100th anniversary of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). Although Xi prefers for unification to be accomplished through peaceful means, he has urged the PLA to be ready to undertake a successful invasion of Taiwan no later than 2027, according to CIA director William Burns, who spoke to CBS Evening News in early October.