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#DavosBrainstorm2024 | ‘China Most Likely To Win War Against US Over Taiwan’, Says Niall Ferguson

Thought Leader: Niall Ferguson
January 18, 2024

Historian and author Niall Ferguson on Tuesday predicted that China is most likely to win the war against the United States (US) over Taiwan — a self-governing island that Beijing considers as its own territory. He said his advice to policymakers in Washington would be to not go to war with China. Ferguson said China is spending a huge amount of money on defence and that its navy is already the biggest in the world. “It’s (China) building a navy that, in terms of numbers of boats, is already the biggest in the world. It is building a nuclear arsenal, which does not get nearly enough attention. But there is a huge threat to global stability. Right now, if there were a showdown between the US and China over Taiwan, I would not put money on the US winning that showdown,” the historian said while speaking with India Today Group’s Vice Chairperson & Executive Editor-in-Chief Kalli Purie and Business Today Executive Director Rahul Kanwal at WEF2024 in Davos. Ferguson, a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, said China would be more likely to win the war because its manufacturing capacity is now so much greater than the US. “If you look at the war games that have been done, one of the striking features is – how quickly the US runs out of precision missiles, in a week. Now, if you’re going to run out of precision missiles in a week, you’re not in great shape to win a war like that,” the historian said. “China’s manufacturing capacity is now so much greater than the US, probably two times greater. If it came to a hot war, China would have some real advantages,” he said, adding that his strong advice to the American policymakers would be – “Don’t do this. Let’s not have a showdown over Taiwan. You’re not in the kind of position you were in back in the 1990s, the last time there was a Taiwan Strait crisis.”

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