The wargame was carried out behind closed doors on Capitol Hill as a tabletop exercise between lawmakers, playing the role of the Taiwanese, and defense experts at the Center for a New American Security, playing the part of the Chinese. The game lasted for about two hours and reinforced the resolve of many lawmakers to address vulnerabilities they were already concerned about, said Andrew Metrick, a fellow with the Defense Program at CNAS and co-creator of the wargame.
“I was impressed with all of the members and their thoughtfulness, their seriousness, and I would say their commitment to taking the lessons from these types of exercises and applying them to deterrence so that this never comes to pass,” he said.
Metrick also commended the committee members for stepping out of their comfort zone to confront the high stakes of such a military conflict.
“When they are confronted with the potential for death and destruction on scales that haven’t been seen in decades, that is sobering … taking that on and thinking about those hard statesmen- or stateswoman-like choices is difficult. It’s not an easy thing. It’s not a comfortable thing. It’s a necessary thing.”
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