Source : Indian Defence Analysis
The missile system that can shatter the Chinese dream of conquering Taiwan
Recently The Chinese state media Global Times has released animation showcasing the roadmap for conquering Tiwan. The message that Beijing, wants to convey to the world is that it can invade Taiwan at will. The CIA Director William Burns has warned that Chinese President Xi Jinping has ordered the military to be capable by 2027 of invading Taiwan.
On April 8, China commenced drills near Taiwan strait in its response to President Tsai Ing-wen’s meeting with the speaker of the US House of Representatives, Kevin McCarthy. During these drills, close to 45 out of 71 Chinese fighter jets entered the sensitive median line of the Taiwan Strait which is a narrow strait between Taiwan and mainland China. It acts as an unspoken Line of Control, which is not officially recognized. The fighter jets and warships of both countries usually avoid crossing it.
Harpoon Coastal Defense System to fortify Taiwan’s Costal Defence
At the same time, Taiwan is geared up to ramp up its defense and acquisition to latest weapons to thwart the offensive strive of PLA forces. As per the reports from Nikkei Asia, around 25 U.S. defense contractors plan to send representatives to Taiwan in early May to discuss joint production of drones and ammunition as Washington explores various options to help bolster the island’s defenses. This would be the first large group of envoys focused specifically on the defense industry to visit Taiwan from the U.S. since 2019. Taiwan is interested in drones — airborne, surface and subsea — as well as ammunition.
In 2020, the U.S. Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) has agreed to sell 100 shore-mounted Harpoon missile systems to Taiwan for an estimated cost of $2.37 billion. It includes 400 ground-launched RGM-84L-4 Harpoon Block II missiles, 4 RTM-84L-4 Harpoon Block II maneuver missiles, 411 missile tanks, 100 shore-mounted Harpoon missile system transport vehicles, 25 radar trucks, and related spare parts and logistics resources. This will form 20-25 anti-ship squadrons. The original plan was to purchase them year by year with an even distribution of quantities, and to complete the purchase by the end of 2030. Many worry that the People’s Republic of China could launch military aggression against Taiwan before then.
Due to the increasing tension with Beijing along the Taiwan Strait, its been reported that more than half of the systems will be shipped within three years and delivered to Taiwan, and the subsequent half will be delivered by the end of 2029.
Harpoon Coastal Defense System (HCDS)
The Harpoon coastal defense system(HCDS) consists of RGM-84L-4 Block II surface-launched Harpoon missiles with a maximum range of 75 nmi (139 km), radar trucks, and support and test equipment. The Harpoon Block II, uses a 500-pound warhead for sea and land-based targets. The Harpoon’s active radar guidance, low-level sea-skimming cruise trajectory, terminal mode sea-skim or pop-up maneuvers, and warhead design, assure high survivability and effectiveness. The missile has enough range to cover much of the Taiwan Strait.
The best USP of this missile is its effectiveness and ability to endure which are ensured by various factors such as its warhead design, active radar guidance, terminal mode sea-skimming, or pop-up maneuvers. Chinese dream of conquering Taiwan Chinese dream of conquering Taiwan Chinese dream of conquering Taiwan Chinese dream of conquering Taiwan IgMp