VOLUME LVII – Number 1

Alan Cunningham

Abstract: The tensions between the Taiwanese and Chinese governments have been increasing in recent months, with many national security experts and academics finding a conflict in the South China Sea likely in 2023. China’s naval forces are the largest in the world and this is perhaps their greatest strength while Taiwan’s navy remains dwarfed by their greatest adversary. While a conflict in the South China Sea would not be easy and U.S. support would surely assist Taiwan, creating a security force assistance (SFA) unit staffed by U.S. Naval officers to focus on teaching, training, and providing assistance to the Taiwanese Navy could prove beneficial in countering the Chinese military. By providing expert intelligence, military strategic advice on naval operations, and training Taiwanese officers in naval combat tactics, such a unit could be able to benefit not only Taiwan, but other allied nations with an interest in a non-China dominated South China Sea (e.g., Australia, Japan, South Korea).

Key Words: Security Force Assistance, U.S. Navy, Foreign Internal Defense, National Defense, International Security, China, Taiwan

About the Author: Alan Cunningham is a PhD student at the University of Birmingham’s Department of History in the United Kingdom. He holds an MA in International Relations from Norwich University and a BA and BS from the University of Texas at Austin.

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