According to a report by Taiwan’s United Daily News & Newsweek, the United States has initiated a long-term training mission involving the U.S. Army 1st Special Forces Group, marking a notable escalation in military cooperation between the two entities amid rising tensions with China.
The initiative is reported as a direct outcome of the provisions laid out in the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act, which opened avenues for enhanced military collaboration between the United States and Taiwan. For decades, Taiwan has relied on the United States for military training, weapons, and international support, maintaining a strong defense posture against China’s sovereignty claims. China views Taiwan as part of its territory, a claim strongly rejected by Taipei. The U.S. Defense Department, through spokesperson Lt. Col. Martin Meiners, did not comment on the specifics of the training but emphasized the United States’ commitment to Taiwan’s defense and the maintenance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait and within the region.
While Taiwan’s Defense Ministry has not commented on the specifics of the report, it has acknowledged that all foreign military exchanges are conducted according to an annual plan. The presence of American service members, especially on islands such as Kinmen, which are visible from China’s coast, and in northern Taiwan for drone equipment training, represents a significant bolstering of Taiwan’s defense capabilities and readiness.