The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Opinion: China won’t repeat Putin’s Ukraine mistakes in Taiwan

By Josh Rogin

04 May 2022 · 3 min read

Chinese President Xi Jinping is watching his friend Russian President Vladimir Putin fumble Russia's invasion of Ukraine and learning from Putin's errors, senior U.S. military officials believe. And if China should ever decide to attack Taiwan, Xi will surely apply the lessons he has learned - which means we in the West must also quickly adjust our plans for Taiwan's defense.

The Chinese government insists that the Ukraine and Taiwan situations are different and that China has no plans to attack the island it claims as its own. But the Taiwanese government correctly recognizes the overwhelming similarity between its situation and that of Ukraine: Both are small democracies menaced by aggressive, nuclear-armed dictatorships threatening to wipe them off the map.

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