The days of Taiwan being an impregnable fortress appear to be over. China’s growing military, coupled with declining defense budgets in Taiwan, have shifted the balance of power to the point where defeat in an invasion scenario — barring foreign intervention — is now inevitable.
“How Taiwan Would Defend Itself From Attack“, U.S. Naval Institute News, March 2014.
Japan’s navy—the Maritime Self Defense Force (MSDF)—will see a modest boost in ships. The number of diesel-electric submarines is set to rise from 16 to 22. Submarine construction is holding steady at one per year, and the rise will be accomplished, at least in the short term, by refurbishing submarines of the Oyashio class that would otherwise be retired.
“Inside Japan’s New Defense Plan“, U.S. Naval Institute News, 12/20/13.
The trend to submarines reflects the desire of Asian countries to protect their recently acquired wealth and enduring economic interests. Much of Asia is dependent on open sea lanes to keep export-driven economies humming, and a recognition of the importance of sea power is driving a general naval expansion throughout the region.
“Asia’s Submarine Race“, U.S. Naval Institute News, 11/13/13.
Spurred on by those developments, Japan has accelerated what have been until now quiet plans to develop a specialized unit of marine infantry. This force, mentored by the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, is seen by Japan as essential in guarding the Senkakus, as well as other disputed territories.
“Japan’s Amphibious Buildup“, U.S. Naval Institute News, 10/8/13.
Two articles published at USNI News today: “A Brief History of Naval Wargames” and “‘Command’ is A Worthy Successor to Harpoon“.
Oh, and if you want the 日本語 version of the game review, a Japanese blogger has helpfully translated it.