eg Chinese Voices
No. 56 | 14.08.2022
Nancy Pelosi meets regional leader Tsai Ing-wen on her visit to Taiwan. [Profimedia]
How Pelosi’s Visit to Taiwan has enabled China to redefine the Rules of the Game
Míng Jīnwéi (明金维)
Ming Jinwei worked as a foreign correspondent for Xinhua News Agency in the Middle East’s main branch in Cairo, and as the deputy director (2008) of the Financial Office, International Department. After he left Xinhua, the author became a famous blogger, under the name “Uncle Ming” (明叔) and is popular among the Chinese social media audience.

Context:

Recently, Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the US House of Representatives and the third most powerful US politician, visited Taiwan, despite China's strong opposition and multiple warnings. However, Ming Jinwei believes that Pelosi's visit, whose aim was to boost Taiwan’s separatists’ movement, is an opportunity that enables China to redefine the rules of the game as the rightful response against US aggression and speed up the process of national reunification.

Key points:

  • The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) was fully capable of shooting down Pelosi’s plane; but if the plane had been shot down, the consequences could have been a direct military conflict between the US and China and this could have led to World War III. The goal of both the PLA and the People’s Republic of China (PRC) is, first and foremost, the reunification of China without engaging in war with the US. China will only engage with the US militarily should it use force to stop China's reunification.
  • Allowing Pelosi's plane to land in Taiwan also showed that China’s focus was not to stop her visit at all costs, but to gain a more favorable strategic position in the military struggle against Taiwan’s separatists’ movement. China’s response to the visit is analogous to its reaction to Japan's so-called nationalization event of the Diaoyu Islands in 2012. In that situation, China's strategy was not to seize the Islands immediately and provoke a war with Japan. Instead, China chose a delayed but more persistent response, which was to send Coast Guard Ships to regularly patrol the Diaoyu Islands’ territorial waters. Using this strategy, China has frequent access to the 12-nautical-miles around the Islands and has defended their right to sovereignty.
  • From the moment Pelosi set foot on Chinese territory – Taiwan Province – the rules of the game changed: The so-called "median line of the Taiwan strait" was abolished, as indicated by the six marked locations of the PLA’s military drill. Faced with the increased collusion between the US and Taiwan’s separatists’ movement, China has finally decided to break the tacit agreement and its restraint regarding the "median line".
  • China’s unification with Taiwan is one of its key strategic goals, while the US is using the separatists’ movement to disrupt and undermine the speed of China’s development. This implies that the strategic determination and resources with which China and the US can devote to this question are not of the same order of magnitude. Therefore, if one side is a "paper tiger", it must be the US.
  • To solve the Taiwan question once and for all, the central government must choose the time best suited to advancing China’s national interests. Many Chinese people may feel stifled during this waiting period. But this is not the first time the central government has had to bide its time to implement the best strategic option. In 2019, during the violent waves in Hong Kong, many clamored for the government to ''clamp down''. However, the central government instead introduced the ''National Security Law'' whose implementation took almost a year but was a definitively strategic response that was much more effective. Thanks to Pelosi’s reckless visit, China now has gained the historic momentum to redefine the rules of the game in the reunification struggle!
Three Lessons from Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan
Huáyǔ Think Tank (华语智库)
Huayu Think Tank (Huayu), founded in February 2017, has gathered more than 160 high-profile experts and scholars from media outlets, especially Xinhua News Agency, the PRC’s military departments and diplomatic service, research institutions, and key universities, among others. Since its establishment, Huayu has consciously fought to safeguard China’s national interests and has had a positive impact on society.

Context:

As a result of Pelosi’s insistent visit to Taiwan, the author of the article has identified three main points to which China should pay attention when forming its Taiwan reunification strategy and especially its attitude towards US interference.

Key points:

  • First, despite China's repeated stern protests and serious warnings, that Pelosi visited Taiwan indicates that China still lacks sufficient deterrence power in the eyes of the US. Her visit to Taiwan has seriously violated China's core interests, and the country must calmly determine its strategic retaliatory response.
  • Second, Pelosi's visit proves that the US may be willing to go to war with China over the Taiwan question. While the US has taken the position that it cannot directly participate militarily in the Ukrainian-Russian conflict due to the risks of nuclear war, some say that the US is afraid of direct military conflict with other nuclear powers. Therefore, it will not challenge China militarily for defending Taiwan. The author says that such a judgment is dangerous and could paralyze China’s combat readiness. China must prepare itself to meet US hostility as it did in the Korean War in resisting the US-led alliance of aggression. The core interest of the US is global hegemony and China is the only country that has the potential to challenge the US on all fronts. So, the future foretells that the US will definitely become increasingly provocative against China, and a group of US allies will follow them down that perilous road.
  • Third, as the strategic game between China and the US is deepened in all directions and escalated to higher levels, and with the passing of time, the chance of peaceful reunification is drastically reduced. Pelosi's visit to Taiwan has made it clear that solving the “Taiwan separatist’s question” ultimately will depend only on military force, a decision that cannot be postponed much longer. The US has forced China’s hand and through its naked interference in China’s sovereignty has dictated the military form of reunification.

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