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Posts Tagged ‘One China’

No War With China – LewRockwell

Posted by M. C. on February 6, 2023

The bigger picture for all of this is, of course, the geopolitical great game which Washington sees as a zero-sum challenge. Strategists in Washington have made it abundantly clear that the American imperative for pursuing its ambitions for global power and dominance is to prevent the rise of Russia and China and a multipolar world order. . . It is therefore logical, if not execrable, that Washington appears to be accelerating on a collision course against Russia and China.

By Llewellyn H. Rockwell, Jr.

You might think that provoking nuclear war with Russia would be enough for brain-dead Biden and his gang of neocon controllers. But it isn’t. They want nuclear war with China too. The Chinese government regards Taiwan as part of China, but it hasn’t tried to take it over militarily. Biden decided this isn’t good enough. He warned the Chinese that if they use force against Taiwan, the US will use force against them. This risks nuclear war.

Michael D. Swaine, an authority of Chinese-American relations who has advised the State Department, explains what is going on in an article that was published in The Diplomat, January 23: “The past year has seen a significant escalation in tension between Washington and Beijing over Taiwan, with many strategists warning that China seems poised to invade the island. In order to preserve U.S. interests, they argue, Washington must rely primarily, if not entirely, on military deterrence.

But this strategy would almost certainly backfire. Rather than preventing a war with China over Taiwan, a policy centered on military deterrence could spark one.

Those who advocate an approach based almost exclusively on deterrence believe China aspires to replace the United States as the dominant regional power in Asia through largely military means. Seizing Taiwan by force or intimidation, they say, is a necessary first step toward subjugating other Asian nations, including U.S. allies like Japan. They believe that once it has gained broader military access to the Pacific by controlling Taiwan and dominating other nearby powers, China could then go on to threaten Hawaii and the continental United States.

According to this analysis, the only option for the United States is to double down on its military presence in the region, push its allies to greatly increase their defense spending and support for the U.S. stance, and move closer to Taiwan both politically and militarily, making it a de facto security ally in Asia. The clear implication is that Taiwan, as a critical strategic location, must never be unified with China.

But this approach to the Taiwan situation is based on a very dubious analysis of both Taiwan’s purported strategic value and China’s regional intentions.

In fact, despite the views of some American and Chinese defense analysts today, historically, neither Washington nor Beijing have ever regarded Taiwan as a key strategic linchpin in the region. For China, reunification with Taiwan is above all else an issue of territorial integrity and national pride; as such, it is critical to the legitimacy of the Communist Party regime in the eyes of its people. For the United States, Taiwan is linked to Washington’s credibility as a loyal supporter of a democratic friend and an ally to others such as Japan and South Korea.

From a purely military perspective, it is highly problematic to assert that control over Taiwan would give Beijing decisive leverage over Japan, South Korea, or other Asian countries, much less the United States. And there is no clear evidence to show that China believes its security depends on militarily defeating or intimidating its Asian neighbors.

Moreover, while some Asian countries are certainly hedging against China’s growing military power and the danger of a Sino-American conflict by increasing their defense spending, the region as a whole is more worried about economic issues such as recovering from the pandemic, overcoming recession, and promoting sustainable growth through continued close economic ties with both the United States and China.

For the United States, a deterrence policy predicated on keeping Taiwan separate from China for strategic reasons is totally incompatible with its one China policy, whereby Washington opposes any unilateral move toward Taiwan independence, maintains strategic ambiguity regarding its defense of Taiwan, and remains open to the possibility of peaceful, uncoerced unification. This position remains the core of the understanding reached in 1972, which formed the basis of the normalization of Sino-American relations, in which the U.S. acknowledged the Chinese position that Taiwan is part of China while Beijing stressed that peaceful unification would be a top priority of its cross-strait policy.

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