PLA poster contains coast guard elements, hints at firm resolve after boat incident

2024-02-26 08:58:50Global Times Editor : Li Yan ECNS App Download
The PLA poster titled

The PLA poster titled "Return Home" is released on Feb. 23, 2024, one day before the Lantern Festival. (Photo from web)

One day before the Lantern Festival, the Eastern Theater Command of the People's Liberation Army (PLA) on Friday released a poster titled "Return Home" calling on Taiwan compatriots to return to the motherland, which also includes elements of the coast guard forces for the first time.

Military experts told the Global Times that the message conveyed in the poster is clear: if the Taiwan military dares to interfere with mainland coast guard's law enforcement operations, they will be struck by the Eastern Theater Command without mercy.

The poster shows a small hand in a big hand with a map of the Taiwan Straits as the background. The text reads: "Small hands in big hands, walking out of the fire pit hand in hand. Light a lamp to drive away evil, the only way to win it to return home."

The first two verses indicate the current situation in the Taiwan Straits, which is also reflected in the cartoon: the bracelet on the small hand with the "Taiwan island" pattern is being roasted by the flames of the Statue of Liberty; a burning green paper with the words "Taiwan independence, division, disturbance" is seen slowly falling.

This implies that foreign forces and "Taiwan independence" secessionists are pushing Taiwan to the brink of war and danger, a military expert told the Global Times on Friday on condition of anonymity.

The second two verses refer to the Lantern Festival celebration, when people on both sides of the Straits reunite with their families, joining hands to drive away external interference forces, and let the secessionists and troublemakers be burned by the flames.

The Global Times also found that the six areas shaded in red are the six live-fire shooting zones set up by the Eastern Theater Command around the Taiwan Straits after then U.S. house speaker Nancy Pelosi's provocative visit to Taiwan island in August 2022.

Surrounding ships and aircraft "encircling the island" have become a common practice for the PLA by now. Especially during the Spring Festival, the Eastern Theater Command continued to conduct sea and air patrols around the Taiwan Straits. This "locking Taiwan" posture is a "green channel" protecting the return journey for Taiwan compatriots, and a sharp blade ready to be used at any time against the "Taiwan independence" separatist forces, said the military expert.

"Kinmen" is highlighted in red traditional Chinese characters, accompanied by a picture of the Fujian Coast Guard's ship 14608. This is also the first time that the military has incorporated coast guard elements in a poster, demonstrating the PLA's clear support for maritime law enforcement.

That implies regular patrols of mainland coast guard in the waters of Xiamen and Kinmen, demonstrating a firm stance against the so-called "prohibition or restriction of waters."

After the Fujian coast guard patrolled the waters and inspected a tourist boat from Kinmen, the Taiwan defense authority claimed it would "not intervene," but at the same time announced it would "provide support as needed."

The message conveyed by the Eastern Theater Command is clear, the expert said, "if the Taiwan armed force dares to intervene and disrupt the law enforcement of mainland coast guards, they will be struck by the Eastern Theater Command without mercy."

The poster adopts firmer language than a video released on February 7 by the Eastern Theater Command calling for reunification, "as the PLA means to demonstrate its firm determination to uphold cross-Straits reunification and combat the forces of 'Taiwan independence,'" said the expert.

The further the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) authorities in Taiwan island steps on the secessionist path, the stronger countermeasures they will meet.

The DPP claimed to strengthen cross-Straits exchanges, which is contrary to their deliberate creation of the "fishing boat incident," proving their hypocritical nature. They slandered the mainland action as "changing the status quo in the Taiwan Straits," when the operation is actually a punitive measure against the DPP's reckless provocations and disruptions. If they truly want to benefit the people of Taiwan island, they must stop their "Taiwan independence" separatist activities, said the expert.


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