The U.S. Army’s 1st Special Forces Group has released rare footage of the famous Green Berets training on the island of Taiwan.
The government in Taipei is doing all that it can to distance itself from Beijing’s regime on the Chinese mainland, which has caused the Chinese to once again issue threats.
The U.S. Government has made it support of Taipei’s government noticeably transparent by sending aircraft and warships into the Taiwan Strait and approving significant arms sales to the military in Taiwan.
The short video, titled ‘Excellence,’ was released by the 1st Special Forces Group on its Facebook page on the 16th June 2020.
Toward the end of June, on the 29th, Lianhe Zaobao, the Chinese language newspaper in Singapore, said that the video reflected the Green Berets taking part in Balance Tamper, an operation in Taiwan alongside the Taiwanese Army’s special operations unit, the 101st Amphibious Reconnaissance Battalion.
The men of the 101st are called the Sea Dragon Frogmen and are similar to the U.S. Navy Seals.
The video is still prominently displayed on the Facebook page. The video contains a segment showing the mock casevac by the Green Berets of an injured soldier by a UH-60M Black Hawk helicopter, immediately identifiable as belonging to the Taiwanese Army by its white and blue badge on the tail.
Another segment shows a person holding a Type 91 assault rifle, which s the standard issue rifle for the Taiwanese military.
The video contains audio that makes one think of the middle of the 20th Century’s television news, when the narrator says, “There are no Marquess of Queensberry rules in guerrilla warfare. It’s a simple matter of kill or be killed. Capture or be captured.”
While it is unclear for how long Balance Tamper exercises have been carried out, special forces from the U.S. Military have been deployed in one capacity or another since 2016.
Until 1979, the U.S. Military had a commanding presence in Taiwan that included a detachment of Army Special Forces in residence. Politics raised its head in 1979 as the U.S. officially recognized the government in Beijing as the official government in China.
At the same time, the U.S. passed the Taiwan Relations Act, which says the U.S. will continue to look after Taiwan’s defense until the island’s status is finally settled. Beijing sees Taiwan as Chinese territory.
Because of this dichotomy, both Taiwan and the U.S. are usually very tight-lipped about military deployments on the island. The only official acknowledgement of military personnel is 21 members representing all service branches.
The Marines on Taiwan are assigned to the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), which operates along the lines of an American Embassy in Taiwan, even though it is privately run. They work like other embassies around the world and provide protection.
The release of this video with the Green Berets its rather public admission that the U.S. and Taiwanese Special Forces are training together appear to be part of a broad message sent to Beijing.
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As relations between Beijing and Taipei continue to deteriorate, it is highly probable that the world will see more training exercises conducted between the U.S. and Taiwan.