Todd Lopez at the DOD News offers the below piece:
Chinese president Xi Jinping has set a timeline for his nation's military to be capable of taking Taiwan by 2027 — just five years from now. Recent events in the Taiwan strait have some questioning the strategic situation and prospects of a near-term invasion.
Colin H. Kahl, the undersecretary of defense for policy, said that while China is very interested in expanding its sphere of political and military influence in the Indo-Pacific region, it's likely going to be more cautious when it comes to a move as aggressive as an invasion of Taiwan.
"I do not think that China wants to put themselves in a position that Russia finds itself in today, which is invading a democratic neighbor — one that I think would generate an enormous amount of global sympathy," Kahl said during a discussion Wednesday at the Defense News Conference 2022, adding China would risk broader military tensions at significant political and economic costs.
"We're not going to change our operating procedures," he said. “We're not going to do things that ratchet up tensions. We're going to do things that assert our continued support for the rules-based international order in the Indo-Pacific and our support for our allies and partners, and not be backed away."