PELOSI’S TRIP TO TAIWAN Raising US-China Tensions, impacting the Indo-Pacific region

83
PM Taiwan
(Source: @SPEAKERPELOSI)

At the same time, the US administration has maintained that Taiwan is not a nation since the establishing of diplomatic ties between China and the US, and the connection between the US and Taiwan since the normalization of Sino-US relations is not formal. Former U.S. President Bill Clinton stated during his visit to China that “the United States does not support Taiwan’s membership in intergovernmental international organizations as a country.” When accepting Premier Wen Jiabao’s visit to the US, President Bush said unequivocally that the US “opposes Taiwan independence”. Yet, it seems the US stance on the One-China Policy appears inconsistent. 

As we all know, the US has been eroding the foundation of Sino-US ties for decades under its so-called one-China policy since the establishing of diplomatic relations between China and the United States. Pelosi’s comments and actions in Taiwan have significantly questioned China’s one-China principle and damaged the foundation of equality, respect, and cooperative development between China and the United States, which would undoubtedly result in China’s strong rejection.

US domestic politics prompt Pelosi’s action 

Pelosi is a powerful member of the US government as the speaker of the House of Representatives. If her trip to Taiwan is positioned at the level of “private identity,” it is not true; rather, it is a literal US tactic to play with fire and avert disaster. During her brief visit to Taiwan, she met with and made lectures to high-level executives and legislative offices, all with extremely sinister objectives. One significant goal of Pelosi’s tour to Taiwan is to provide a forum for “Taiwan independence” forces to oppose China’s noble cause of national reunification. 

President Xi Jinping recently spoke with President Biden via phone. The US reiterated that it will continue to adhere to the one-China policy, but they did not substantially prohibit Pelosi from visiting Taiwan. This underscores the fact that, on the one hand, far-right groups in the United States continue to be staunchly anti-China. Pelosi, for example, has consistently opposed China over her almost 40-year political career; nevertheless, when it comes to extreme right-wing groups, her words and actions are contradictory. She wants to improve relations with China and, to some extent, supports right-wing anti-China sentiment. 

Political correctness is currently fueling anti-China sentiment in the US, and this tendency hasn’t subsided. Therefore, Pelosi’s travel to Taiwan is not wholly unexpected. Despite not publicly endorsing Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan, the U.S. stance is ambiguous, at least in terms of upholding the one-China policy. The fact that certain U.S. government officials think they have a right to travel to Taiwan is a major contributing factor to Pelosi’s successful visit there. 

Pelosi is, of course, requesting her own political secrecy. In the next November congressional elections, Democrats risk losing their majority. As her political career comes to an end, Pelosi has made history by standing up for democratic principles in a last-ditch effort to win over domestic and international audiences. 

Pelosi’s strategy, on the other hand, broadly aligns with that of many American politicians. For instance, following a trip to Taiwan in April, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham and Democratic Senator Bob Menendez sponsored the Taiwan Relations Act of 2022. According to the bill, the US would give Taiwan $4.5 billion in military assistance over the following four years. The paper also urges Washington to make more precise pledges to Taiwan in order to support Taiwan should it get embroiled in a military war, and it urges abandoning a long-standing policy of strategic ambiguity.