Author Biography

Shang-Su Wu is an assistant professor and research coordinator at the Homeland Security Program, the Rabdan Academy, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. He was a research fellow at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Wu has a PhD from the University of New South Wales, Australia. He is the author of The Defence Capabilities of Small States: Singapore and Taiwan’s Responses to Strategic Desperation (London: Palgrave, 2016). His research interests are military modernization, security issues of Southeast and East Asia, railways of international relations. Wu’s articles, commentaries and op-eds have been published in Asia Policy, Asian Survey, Contemporary Southeast Asia, the Pacific Review, Defence Studies, Naval War College Review, and Asia Policy, among others.



Subject Area Keywords

China, International security, Military affairs, National security, Security policy


In view of the increasingly serious threats by China’s rising military power, Taiwan has been compelled to adjust its strategy towards asymmetrical warfare owing to its inferior military capabilities. Taiwan does not have a better alternative to an asymmetrical strategy because it cannot return to a symmetrical strategy or move to a strategy centered on people’s war. Through its indigenous defense industry and an external arms supply by Washington, Taipei has built up considerable capabilities for sea denial against Beijing’s sophisticated platforms that are indispensable for thwarting invasion. These denial capabilities enhance the island’s defense, but Taiwan’s various conditions represent weaknesses that China could exploit. Enhancing its asymmetrical capabilities and denying China’s alternatives are the two main approaches for Taiwan to make improvement, while the role of third parties is also important.