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China vs Taiwan

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April 23, 1999

Policy Consideration

by the

NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL

On
US POLICY TOWARDS THE POTENTIAL QUESTION OF INDEPENDENCE OF THE REPUBLIC OF CHINA, TAIWAN

POLICY CONSDERATION

History of the Republic of China, past and present

In December 1978, the representative of China in the United Nations, the Republic of China, Taiwan was asked to leave the UN. Taiwan had to give up its seat in the UN Security Council as a permanent member and in the UN General Assembly. This is due to the US’s recognition of communist China, the Peoples’ Republic of China. Ever since 1949, both Chinas, have claimed be the legal government of China. Until 1992, both states were in a state of war ever since the nationalists Kuomintang were exiled to Taiwan. Since then, the US has pledged the security of Taiwan in the event of a communist China invasion by the People’s Liberation Army. As a result of this, the PRC has refrained from invading Taiwan because of US involvement. What this policy paper will address is the potential conflict that will occur if Taiwan declares itself as an independent state. The Republic of China, Taiwan is situated on an island called Formosa. It was settled by the Chinese in the 17th Century and saw early colonial rule of the Dutch between 1620 to 1662, when it reverted back to Imperial Chinese rule. Between 1845 and 1945, the island of Formosa also saw Imperial Japanese rule. At the end of World War Two in 1945, the nationalist Kuomintang or KMT was facing a civil war with the Chinese Communist Party or CCP for the control of Mainland China. By 1949, the KMT was defeated and retreated to the island of Formosa, forming its own state, Taiwan. As a result both regimes have claimed to be the true legitimate representation of China: the communist China called People’s Republic of China and the nationalist China, Republic of China or Taiwan. Since then both Chinas, have tried to seek legitimacy in the international arena arguing to be the only legal China in the world today. However, the PRC has always claimed that Taiwan is a renegade province and belongs to the mainland. However, this presents a problem.

The Problem

Taiwan has enjoyed a huge economic prosperity despite the fallout of the Asian crisis currently. Since 1949, with the help of US aid and foreign investment, land reforms, government planning and free universal education, it has become one of the fastest growing economies in the world today. This has brought an increase in living standards, an improved and competitive heavy and high technology industry. The per capita Gross Domestic Product is US$ 13,510 according to 1995 estimates. Taiwan is one the biggest and growing economies of the Newly Industrialized Countries or NICs and is the 10th largest capital exporters in the world. By 1996 also, it had its first free presidential election, which meant that Taiwan was growing to be more democratic and open. (The World Almanac) If the PRC and Taiwan were to reunify, that would mean having to share the wealth and be subjected to the autocratic and centralized control of the communist regime in Beijing. The PRC has had to contend with the nuisance of Taiwan, being the only Chinese territory not under the control of the Beijing government. Through the past decade, the other Chinese territories like the island of Hong Kong, Kowloon and its surrounding New Territories was returned by the British. In 1999 also, the PRC anticipates the upcoming return of another Chinese territory, Macao Island by the Portuguese. However, Taiwan has been a source of discomfort since the Beijing government does not have any authority in Taiwan. The threat of Taiwan here is that if they no longer identify themselves with the Mainland Chinese, they might pursue the course of independence instead of seeking reunification. As the US has promised to support Taiwan if invaded, it is not clear whether the US will support Taiwanese independence or maintain the close relationship with the PRC since the Shanghai Communiqué of 1972. (Stuart and Tow)
US Relations with the PRC and Taiwan Since the 1960s, the PRC has had disagreements with the former Soviet Union. This had an adverse result. The US sensing a possible ally, made overtures to the PRC. One of the first steps to diplomatic relations, was the Ping-Pong Diplomacy in 1969. This was a sort of cultural exchange and dialogue between the US and the PRC. It was decided by the Beijing government in 1970 that gradual rapprochement would be a good strategy to counter the communist threat of the former Soviet Union. This evolved into a strategic triangle with the PRC holding a weak dagger position against the former Soviet Union and the US in a comfortable pivot position. However, the PRC warned the US that it should not exploit the growing relationship with the PRC to go against the former USSR. What led to the full normalizing of relations between the PRC and the US was the expulsion of Taiwan from the United Nations in 1971. This meant that the UN recognized the PRC as the legal representative of China, thereby embracing the one China policy. Though the US supported the entry of the PRC into the UN, they did not support the expulsion of the Republic of China, Taiwan. To end the friction between both countries, Premier Zhou Enlai of the PRC invited President Richard Nixon to Beijing, which he did in February 28, 1972. This marks the first time an American President has visited the People’s Republic of China. In that same year the Nixon administration and the Beijing government agreed to in consensus to what is now known as the Shanghai Communiqué. The Shanghai Communiqué of 1972 contains the blue print for future Sino-American relations. The PRC must give up its pledge of invading Taiwan to reunite the two ‘Chinas’ and that it would seek a peaceful resolution to the issue of reunification. In exchange the US will acknowledge the one China policy, which meant recognizing the PRC as the sole legitimate government of China, thereby withdrawing the recognition of the Republic of China. However, this also meant that the US had to withdraw its forces from Taiwan but would safeguard Taiwan’s security in the event of an invasion. This enabled the US to counter the threat of the former Soviet Union but still it did not tantamount to full normalization of relations. Between May and June 1973, both the US and the PRC opened up liaison offices in both capitals. Finally on December 15, 1978, the US finally recognized the PRC as the sole legal government of China, thereby withdrawing the recognition of Taiwan. Both the US and the PRC finally established diplomatic relations on January 19, 1979. (The World Almanac) Even if the US has withdrawn the recognition of Taiwan, the US still maintains a relationship with the Republic of China. The US still maintains its presence in Taiwan through the American Institute in Taipei while the Taipei Government of Taiwan maintains its agency of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in Washington DC and other major US cities. (The World Almanac) Though the US adheres to the Shanghai Communiqué of 1972, it still regards as Taiwan as an integral part of the US strategic interest in the Asia Pacific. This is because Taiwan sits in the middle of the shipping routes between Northeast Asia and Southeast Asia. Taiwan also could prove to be potential blue water base for the US Naval Pacific 7th Fleet for future US military operations in times of crisis. (Stuart and Tow) The US has also maintained its security guarantee to Taiwan in the event of an invasion by PRC provided that the Taiwan Government does not declare independence from Mainland China. This is stated in the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979. The act also provides that the US retains all past treaties made with Taiwan and monitors its military capabilities. This is made possible with the relations between the PRC and Taiwan still at a standstill.
Relations between the PRC and Taiwan Throughout the late eighties and nineties, we have seen a gradual improvement of relations between the PRC and Taiwan. In 1980, the PRC proposed to negotiate a settlement with the Taiwanese. They offered the ‘one China, two systems’ as a recipe for reunification. Under this system, Taiwan would be allowed autonomous control over all its policies except in defense and foreign affairs. This is the system, which Hong Kong and its territories now have since reverting back to PRC rule. In 1989, the then President of Taiwan, President Chiang Ching-Kuo allowed visitation rights of Taiwanese relatives residing in the PRC. It was also agreed that both the PRC and Taiwan would agree to a bilateral economic trade and investment, which therefore opened up line of communications between both states. (Myers) The PRC also helped for the fact to offer Taiwanese investment through commercial inducement and favors. As a result, exports to the PRC has grown to more than 20%, more than the allowed Taiwanese government set of 10%. This proves important because through bilateral economic trade, the PRC can affect the Taiwanese drive towards independence from the PRC. However, this can prove detrimental to the Taiwanese because it they intend to cool off relations with the PRC, not only would they risk being invaded but also risk the slowdown of economic growth, which could also affect the whole of Southeast Asia. (Lasater) The relations between the Beijing government and the Taipei government were good between 1989 and 1995 because of economic ties. This was evident from the cross- Strait investment and trade of the Taiwanese business community in the PRC. By 1995, the total trade to the PRC was 12% of the annual foreign trade and exports of Taiwan. Investment was up to more than US$20 billion. By April 1992, President Lee Teng Hui ended the technical state of war with the PRC. On April 27, negotiations began in Singapore between the Taiwanese and the PRC. This led to further agreements and an exchange of understanding between the two governments. (Myers) Despite the agreements and the improving relations between both sides, things went bad. In the summer of 1995, the US granted the Taiwanese President Lee Teng Hui a visa to visit his US alma mater Cornell University. This was vehemently protested by the PRC because not only did he visit his alma mater, he met with members of the US Congress and spoke about democratic developments in which the first presidential elections would take place in 1996. This act provoked a reaction from the PRC government in Beijing. They recalled its ambassador and postponed the visit of the PRC defense minister to the US, suspended talks on the Missile Technology Control Regime. In China, they suspended negotiations on the reunification issue and also heightened their military exercises off the Zheijiang coast north of Taiwan. This is because the action of the US allowing a Taiwanese head of state into the country tantamount to supporting ‘two Chinas,’ which is a violation of the 1972 Shanghai Communiqué. (Stuart and Tow) In 1996, the first presidential elections were held in Taiwan. This provoked an even stronger response from the Beijing government. On March 8th, 1996, the PLA practiced fired two M-9 missiles off the ports of Taiwan. These M-9 missiles were ballistic missiles that were nuclear capable and the missile firing was to intimidate the Taiwanese that Taiwan is part of China and would not allowed to be an independent state. They were also meant to project the idea that the PRC would use force to compel the reunification of China and the projection of its nuclear capabilities. (Andersen) However according to defense analysts, the invasion of Taiwan would not succeed if the US forces intervene. This is what happened during the Taiwanese presidential elections, two carrier battle groups were sent to the Taiwan Straits as a precaution against PLA aggression maneuvers. It is believed that Taiwan would not be able to withstand a full-scale invasion by the PLA for three months if the US does not intervene directly. Even with the air superiority of the Taiwanese air force consisting of US built F-16 fighter aircraft and French built Mirage 2000-5 multi- role aircraft, the defense of Taiwan would be solely depended on US military commitment according to the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979. However, US military commitment would depend on if the Taiwanese do not declare independence and would come to their aid if the PRC reneged on their promise of the Shanghai Communiqué. (Stuart and Tow)
US Policy Considerations As the Pentagon suggests, the PLA has increased it surface to surface missiles stockpile from 200 to 600 missiles aimed at Taiwan. Under pressure from the Taiwanese, the US might have to provide for the defense of Taiwan by selling Aegis class warships or the advance versions of the Patriot missile defense systems or provide direct US involvement. However, the sale of modern warships and anti-missile defense network system and the possible deployment of troops would lead to a confrontation between the US and the PRC, which the US can ill afford to have. The PRC would charge that this is against international law and the act would undermine the stability of the Asia Pacific region. (The Economist) It would be the Cold War revisited all over again. The US could also find itself isolated from its major Asian and European allies. Recently, the tensions between Taiwan and the PRC have somewhat cooled down. This is because both governments are pursuing their own domestic agendas. The Taipei government of Taiwan are pursuing their consolidation of democracy and reforming the polity and economy as a result of the Asian economic crisis. The Beijing government of the PRC is currently trying to cope with the post transition and ensuring the stability of the ‘two Chinas’ principle of Hong Kong and its territories since their return. However, the threat of force to unify the country by the PLA is still real if Taiwan resorts to declare independence. To maintain stability in the region, the US must be able to keep its presence in the region. Having a strong presence in the region would deter any PLA invasion of Taiwan. In the event of a PLA attack, the US would provide military intervention in the aid of Taiwan provided it does not go down the road to full independence. However according to security analysts, an unprovoked military reunification campaign would not be in the political and economic interests of the PRC. Even so, it is in the interest of the US to maintain its presence in the region to contain a possible PRC aggression.
Even with the presence of the US to maintain stability in the region, the US should promote the peaceful solution to this age-old problem. The difficulty of Taiwan’s democratization would prove to be detrimental to reunification with the PRC. Nevertheless, the US should maintain its stance since 1979 that is to maintain its one China policy; maintaining diplomatic relations with the PRC government and retaining informal relations with Taiwan; declare firmly that the reunification issue must be resolved peacefully and insisting that it must be resolved by the Chinese themselves. In this matter the US should encourage trust building and cooperation similar to the agreements and treaties made between the PRC and Taiwan. A good start to the reunification process is the ending of the state of war by the Taiwanese in 1992. This must preclude to a peace treaty to be signed by both governments and allow for the start of negotiations on the issue of reunification.
The Taiwanese must also be encouraged to play a more active role in the reunification issue. Providing security guarantees to the Taiwanese do not mean tacit support for independence but conditional in the event of a provoked attack by the PRC. In 1996, the Shanghai Declaration made Taiwanese foreign policy to receive support for independence. This policy of the current administration pronounces that the US would not support the ‘two Chinas’ nor it would support ‘one China’ and ‘one Taiwan’ and the US would not support the membership of Taiwan in intergovernmental organizations such as the UN. This has been the policy of past administrations albeit an implicit one, however this marks the first time a US president has affirmed expressively the position of Taiwan. (Andersen)
With the end of the cold war, the US must find itself a new role to play in an ever-changing geopolitics. We must define our interests explicitly, which must be clear to the governments of both PRC and Taiwan. The issue of reunification should resolved peacefully and not through military campaigns. Such campaigns would be detrimental not only to the security and stability of the Northeast Asia region but also the whole of the Asia Pacific region. Until such a time, it will be a long time when the Taiwanese and the Mainland Chinese can somehow live to coexist in an arrangement that is beneficial to all in the region. It is consequential that the US maintains its presence in the region in a state of constant military readiness.

Bibliography

Andersen, Christopher. “Taiwan: Apocalypse, maybe.” The Economist 349.8093 (November 7, 1998): 6-8.

Anonymous. “Asia: An American Shield for Asia.”
The Economist 350.8107 (February 20, 1999): 37-38.

Lasater, Martin L. Asia and the Pacific-The Changing of the Guard: President Clinton and the Security of Taiwan
Boulder: Westview, 1995.

Myers, Ramon H. “ The Challenge of China’s Reunification: US Foreign Policy.”
Vital Speeches of the Day 63.13 (April 15, 1997): 389-391.

Stuart, Douglas T. and Tow, William T. A US Strategy for the Asia Pacific
New York: Oxford University Press Inc., 1995

The World Almanac and Book of Facts: 1998.
New Jersey: K-III Reference Corporation. 1997…...

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China vs. India

...seems that no one goes anywhere without their smart phone in their pocket and a GPS in their car. A field that has been completely changed by advances in technology is the medical field. No longer due doctors take ones temperature or blood pressure manually, they have special devices that can give a more accurate reading then a human ever could. Hand held medical scanner technology is showing an astonishing breakthrough and can revolutionize home and hospital medicine just as the home thermometer did. These types of devices have already improved the way care is given in the U.S. greatly and can do the same for countries all over the world. The two countries I chose to enter are ones that have been growing rapidly in almost all aspects, China and India. Handheld medical scanners are a real product being used but are very new and do not have much of a history or a company that solely produces them. So what are they? According to David Freeman in the Huffington Posts article “Star Trek's Tricorder Medical Scanner May Become Reality, Thanks To Nanotechnology Breakthrough,” using nanotechnology, physicists in London and Singapore found a way to make a beam of the "T-rays"--which are now used in full-body airport security scanners--stronger and more directional. The advance, which was described in a recent issue of the journal Nature Photonics, could lead to T-ray scanning devices that are smaller and more portable than existing devices. "T-rays promise to revolutionize......

Words: 4090 - Pages: 17