6 June 2014
Senior Taiwanese diplomatic officials during a visit to Washington indicated that Taipei could be more amenable to U.S. urgings to share more technical antimissile data if the United States was to permit more exports of major U.S. weapon systems, the Washington Times reported.
Dale Wen-Chieh Jieh, who leads the Taiwanese foreign affairs ministry's policy planning office, said there are currently between two and four "long-range early-warning radars" in place along Taiwan's western coastline.
The particular radar the United States is interested in is an early warning radar deployed not far from Hsinchu City on the island nation's west coast facing China, Defense News reported last month. According to Chinese military expert Mark Stokes, the Raytheon-manufactured radar has the ability to simultaneously monitor up to 1,000 targets, including ballistic and cruise missiles as well as fighter planes.
Jieh told the Times there was strong local opposition to erecting additional radar installations that are seen to be more beneficial to the United States than to Taiwan. "President Ma [Ying-jeou] has been enduring so much domestic pressure, questioning, 'Why do you need these long-range radar towers detecting the long-range missiles of mainland China that won't target Taiwan but target some other countries?'" the diplomat said.
Even with this domestic pressure, Jieh said Taipei has "been very affirmative in helping the U.S. set up these radar towers."
Kwei-Bo Huang, secretary general of the Taiwanese
Association of Foreign Relations, suggested that a quid-pro-quo
was in order: "If the U.S. continues to sell pre-warning radars
to Taiwan, we need something we can see, for example, something
in the air, F-22, F-35 or submarines, that enhances our
national defense capability."