Taiwanese special forces

To be honest, you can’t really criticise either of those `'media outlets". You just talk about them, and people laugh.

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Drop a quarter in it when you leave the comment section.

Cory wasn’t calling these soldiers police. It was a snark aimed at the trend of militarizing police (something Cory has been critical of in the past).

That’s PEACE Officer Friendly.

Can we use /o for /orwell now?

Why even pretend anymore?


I’d agree with that … except for the somewhat fuzzy definition of ‘Special Forces,’ especially in an international context, and the fact that these goons are tooling around with riot shields. Duddly Doright don’t need no stinkin’ shield when he’s taking down Toby Taleban, but they sure as heck do come in handy when curb stomping recalcitrant protesters.


It actually looks like the shape of that mask would help direct liquids or projectiles into the eye holes.

I’ve worn several types of protective gear over the years, and I would not want to wear that mask.

I personally find it less insulting toward Mr. Doctorow to assume he simply confused soldiers for police officers (especially considering the very real trend of militarized police forces, as well as combination of “SWAT style” matte black uniforms and the difficultly in both noticing and properly identifying the uniform insignias), than to assume that he purposefully shoehorned his concerns over militarized police forces into a context that had nothing to do with the topic.

Of course, it is entirely possible that these figures are, in fact, police officers. I’ve been trying to confirm it one way or another with some web searching, but I can’t find much conclusive.

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Ehem… but I’m compelled to say:



They’re not cops, they are soldiers. And yeah, the faceplate is designed to stop close-range shots so I’m guessing they’re intended for urban warfare - the kind we’d see a lot of here if the People’s Republic Of China ever decides to invade. How likely that is is an open question but we have plenty drills here all the time in preparation and PRC makes no move to disguise their ultimate intentions. At the end of the day we’re doomed if they try - Mike Tyson against a feisty terrier - but at least we can go down swinging (or biting).


I’m sorry. I’m confused. Did you find the linked article in Japanese to be factually incorrect?

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Man, this takes me back to the “Hello, Kitty” riot in Taipei when I was there. It was brutal!

McDonald’s was running a Happy Meal promotion where Hello Kitty and her boyfriend (Dear Daniel) got dressed up in different wedding gear each week and were sold along with the meal. It was a huge success. People bought tons of Happy Meals to get the collector’s items and dumped the burgers in the nearest trash bins. The three-legged stray dogs of Taiwan dined like kings on that stuff every Wednesday when the new batch came out.

By the time they went through the Korean, North American, Chinese and so on wedding outfits the fad was at a fever pitch. The last one in the series was the Outer Space wedding where the couple were in darling retro space suits with bubble-tops. The issue was instantly sold out and distressed hordes were being turned away by 10 am. Then some bright spark noted that there was now a McDonald’s inside of the museum downtown (not the huge one but the little one) and that the museum didn’t open up on Wednesdays until noon.

An enormous line-up formed between the velvet ropes and gazed expectantly through the glass doors at the McDonald’s El Dorado before them. At 11:30 the McDonald’s staff started to arrive and, to the horror of their audience, started to blatantly stuff their backpacks with Hello Kitty Outer Space Wedding kits!!

One concerned citizen screamed “They can’t do that!!” and chucked one of the velvet rope stands through the front doors to get at the miscreants. This set off an alarm at Taipei Riot Squad Central down the block. The shock troops arrived in about 2 minutes and began to liberally apply water cannons, and tear and riot gas.

The coda to the whole bloody incident was delivered by a Local Man interviewed by Taipei Action News - his face in his hands, swollen with gas, and blood pouring down the side of it: “I hate that damned cat!”


Police, military, SWAT - what’s the difference?

You mean besides the differences in granted powers, jurisdictions, legal statuses, restrictions from international laws, their roles and natures, and their basic daily operations? Well in that case…

If you personally don’t care to distinguish between police and military, that’s your prerogative, but the fact of the matter is that despite a growing trend in employing comparable gear, the two are very different organizations with very different purposes, behaviors, and powers. Just because you can’t or won’t tell the difference between them does not make them the same thing. Reality is not subject to your perceptions or opinions, after all.


Yeah… I have to wonder about the utility of that face armor for two reasons. First, there is the obvious visual and breathing impairment. Second, and as an engineer these seems fucking obvious, but maybe I am insane or missing something, the face mask is linked to nothing and flush against your face. That means that if you get hit in the face with a bullet, it is going to spread the force of the bullet across that not so large area of where your face touches that helmet. If it the facemask was rigidly affixed to the torso, or it had some some room to give it would make sense. The US military has some epic bomb disposal gear with blast shield style helmets, but the key is to NOT have it flush against the soft bits of your face. You want to burn off some of that kinetic energy before it rips your face in half. This though… it just seems insane.

Even if the mask stops the bullet dead, I feel like it is going to slam all of that force into your laughably delicate cheekbones and nose. If you look at a bomb suit helmet, it is all about spreading that blast to the less snappy bits of your skull and preferably transferring the majority of the blast to your body.

Why bring up the PRC? The topic at hand is the ROC - a very different beast.

Seriously folks, Red Dawn is fiction, and bad fiction at that. The Soviets weren’t going to invade in the '80s, and China isn’t going to invade in the modern day. It would be unfeasible and strategically bankrupt to do so.

Hmm. I can’t figure out how to tag people. To all of you whining about Cory referring to these guys as cops: The distinction between military and police is much less rigid most places in the world than it is here. In Taiwan in particular, they were under martial law continuously until 1987. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Terror_(Taiwan) Since that was really not that long ago,(within my memory, anyway) it would not be at all unreasonable to assume that these folks could be used for domestic riot suppression if things got hairy.


Because they have been threatening to invade the ROC for decades. The sole reason Taiwan invests in this kind of thing is to defend against the PRC. Do yourself a favour, actually read the comments and learn something about global politics before jumping in. No-one mentioned anyone invading the US. Only your imagination.


Apologies for the assumption. In retrospect, it seems obvious that would have been what you meant.

I suppose I must have projected a bit, and assumed that you were of the same mind as certain others I’ve been talking with of late who are convinced that China is going invade the US. Something in the phrasing, perhaps. In any case, I apologize again for my misunderstanding.


This argument about distinguishing soldiers from cops is strange to me. A lot of countries integrate the two to some degree. The United States has a state/federal separation that a lot of countries don’t, which tends to separate out the roles. See: Gendarmerie. Even if Taiwan doesn’t combine the two, it’s not a given that they would be completely independent entities- not as the current global trend.


Just a moderator note to stay on topic.

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