Good morning. Here’s your Daily Situational Awareness for Thursday, 20 October 2022.
U.S. NAVY TOP ADMIRAL: CHINA INVASION OF TAIWAN COULD HAPPEN BEFORE YEAR’S END: U.S. Navy Chief of Naval Operations Mike Gilday warned that new estimates show a cross-strait invasion of Taiwan could happen in 2023 and possibly even before the end of 2022. Gilday made the comments at an Atlantic Council think tank event in Washington D.C. and added, “What we’ve seen over the past 20 years is that [the Chinese have] delivered on every promise they’ve made earlier than they said they were going to deliver on it.” China’s President Xi Jinping speaking at the Chinese Communist Party Congress this week, said China was fully committed to reclaiming Taiwan and would not renounce the use of force in achieving that goal.
IRAN SENDS IRGC ADVISORS TO CRIMEA: In comments to the media, unnamed U.S. intelligence officials said the Iranian military has deployed technical advisors from the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps to Crimea in a “substantial” increase of its support of Russian Forces. The advisors are ostensibly part of a training initiative to reduce operator and mechanical errors hindering the performance of Iranian-supplied drones used by Russian forces. Officials noted the IRGC advisors are deployed to a base in Crimea that has been noted for drone activity and indicated it was unclear if any of the drones were being operated by the advisors.
U.S. AND TAIWAN PLAN TO JOINTLY PRODUCE WEAPONS: The U.S. government is reportedly considering a plan to produce weapons jointly with Taiwan. The plan would speed up production and arms transfers to the island nation and increase deterrence against its adversary China. Taiwan has made a number of high-dollar purchases of U.S. arms but recently complained that the timeline for delivery of those weapons was outside the reasonable defensive timeline for Taiwan to deter an attack by China. There was no word on what type of weapons would be produced and when the details of such an initiative could be worked out between the two nations.
XI APPROVES KEY LEADER POSITIONS IN NEW CENTRAL COMMITTEE AND ANTI-CORRUPTION UNIT: During the second meeting of the Presidium of the 20th National CCP Congress, Xi Jinping adopted the proposed list of preliminary nominees to the Central Committee, the CCPs core political leadership group. Xi also approved the preliminary list of nominees to the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection – the party’s anti-corruption watchdog. The anti-corruption unit is one of the primary security vehicles for removing political opponents in the Central Committee and Chinese government. Xi used the anti-corruption unit to remove several powerful rivals ahead of this year’s CCP Congress. Xi’s approval of the list indicates he is still firmly in control of the power elements within the CCP.
In today’s Early Warning, Mike provides his Weekly Economic Outlook, which contains continued warnings of a potential financial crisis and signals of “more pain ahead.” Plus, the team provides the latest from Congress and other domestic issues. Get access to the full report here: https://forwardobserver.com/subscribe