In a recent interview with CNN Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said his nation “needs to prepare” for a possible military conflict, against China, as the communist regime continues to encroach into the island nation. His statements came less than a week after Taiwan reported “ the largest daily incursion by Chinese military planes into Taiwan’s self-declared Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ).”
According to reports, 28 Chinese warplanes – including fighter jets and bombers — entered Taiwanese sovereign airspace. Reports stated that the action did not violate international law, but it was seen as show of strength by China’s People’s Liberation Army.
Personally, I would beg to differ that the actions of the CCP did not violate international law. However, there appears to be little Taiwan can do to target the Chinese Communist Party, which is a world super power, that has directed it’s military to display a show of strength against the small island nation. It is intimidation at the highest levels.
Dean Cheng, an expert on China’s military and space capabilities as a research fellow with The Heritage Foundation in Washington D.C., stated in a recent editorial that the bigger question is how will the United States react to China’s aggression against Taiwan?
Chen said that the U.S. relationship with Taiwan is built on trust and a close security commitment. He warned that
“failure to respond to an act of naked aggression by the PRC against Taiwan would raise real questions about American commitments to those treaty allies. Coming in within 10 years of U.S. failure to enforce the Syrian red line after Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons (when then Secretary of State John Kerry famously declared that Assad staying in power was a “non-starter”); and the inconclusive conclusion to the two-decade war in Afghanistan, American allies would rightfully wonder what the value of an American security commitment actually is.”
Chen is right. A Chinese victory over Taiwan will not only alter the geopolitical environment in the Far East but he stressed it would alter the geopolitical balance of power across the globe. There is also the issue, pointed out by Chen, that because the U.S. can’t “simply walk away from the people of Taiwan (the way the U.S. had in South Vietnam several years earlier), Congress enacted the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA), to govern U.S. relations with the island.”
The TRA is a law, not quite the same as a binding treaty, such as those that undergird the NATO alliance or the commitments to Japan and South Korea. While the authors tried to approximate best they could the U.S.-ROC security treaty the TRA replaced, the TRA does not contain the treaty’s explicit commitment to “act to meet the common danger.”Dean Chen, The Heritage Foundation
He stressed that over the “past several years, Chinese leader Xi Jinping has demonstrated his willingness to flout both international treaties and ‘the good opinion of all mankind.’ The crackdown on Hong Kong is in direct contravention of the Sino-British Joint Declaration, which guaranteed a “high-degree of autonomy” for 50 years. That agreement seems to have expired over two decades early. “
“Above all, it would demonstrate that Beijing has concluded that the general status quo that has ruled the Taiwan Straits region for the last six decades is no longer acceptable. Threats, coercion, and intimidation are already testing that status quo, but an open invasion—which would jeopardize not only the population of Taiwan but the thousands of Americans, Japanese, Europeans and others who are living on the island—would indicate that Beijing has truly changed its view of its intended relations with the rest of Asia and the world,” states Chen.
As for Taiwan’s Foreign Minister Wu, he stressed Taiwan must “be prepared.” I say based on what we are seeing with regards to China’s aggression globally the west needs to be prepared as it navigates new political waters and an apparent shift and power play by the Chinese Communist Party.
“As Taiwan decision makers, we cannot take any chances, we have to be prepared,” Wu told CNN in Taipei on Wednesday. “When the Chinese government is saying they would not renounce the use of force, and they conduct military exercises around Taiwan, we would rather believe that it is real.” Wu, who has served as minister of foreign affairs since 2018, was accused by Beijing in May of being a “diehard separatist” after remarks he made during a news conference that Taiwan would fight “to the very last day” if attacked by China.CNN Exclusive interview
For more on this story go here.
You can follow Sara Carter on Twitter @SaraCarterDC
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