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China Vows to "Fight to the End" to Prevent Taiwan's Independence

    China Vows to "Fight to the End" to Prevent Taiwan's Independence
    Last updated Sep 20, 2022
    Image credit: Agence France Press [via South China Morning Post]

    Facts

    • During the 19th Shangri-La Dialogue security summit in Singapore on Sun., China's Def. Min. Wei Fenghe announced that Beijing will "fight to the very end" to prevent Taiwan from declaring independence and emphasized that China's goal was "peaceful reunification."
    • In his address, the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLR) general also condemned the US for allegedly trying to "hijack" the support of regional nations against China under the guise of a free and open Indo-Pacific and multilateralism.
    • Asked about the development of new missile silos in eastern China, Wei also acknowledged Sun. that Beijing had made significant progress in developing new nuclear weapons to protect China.
    • The day before, US Def. Sec. Lloyd Austin, also speaking at Asia's premier defense summit, accused China of increasingly aggressive behavior in the region and towards Taiwan. He emphasized that Washington would continue to strengthen Taiwan's defense capabilities.
    • However, in a one-on-one meeting with Wei on Fri., the former US general declared that US policy toward Taiwan had not changed and that Washington remained committed to the one-China principle.
    • Beijing had recently accused Washington of abandoning its commitment to the One China principle after US Pres. Joe Biden confirmed on May 23 that Washington would defend Taiwan militarily in the event of a Chinese attack. However, the White House later said the remarks did not represent a change in US policy.

    Spin

    Pro-China narrative

    Having already destabilized the Middle East and plunged Europe into chaos, Washington is now increasingly turning its eye to China and the Indo-Pacific. However, it's all too obvious that for all the talk of a "free and open Indo-Pacific" and protecting Taiwan, Washington is primarily concerned with defending its hegemonic status. But by increasingly undermining China's territorial integrity and failing to honor its agreement to abide by the One China principle, Washington is playing with fire.

    Anti-China narrative

    The battle between democracy and authoritarianism is in full swing, and China's imperial appetite must be firmly countered. That is why Biden did the right thing when he announced that the US would defend Taiwan. To deter Beijing and stand up for democratic values, it is high time for the US to move beyond "strategic ambiguity." However, joint efforts to defend the free world make US military modernization and rearmament indispensable.

    Nerd narrative

    There is a 54% chance that the People's Republic of China will have annexed at least half of Taiwan by 2050, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


    Establishment split

    CRITICAL

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