On Thursday, a leading Chinese state-run newspaper announced the unthinkable: Beijing must prepare for “a direct military clash” over self-ruled Taiwan after a mid-level U.S. official arrived in Taipei on Tuesday, angering senior officials in Beijing.
The atmosphere in Beijing started to get heated when Alex Wong, US deputy assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, arrived in Taipei on Tuesday. Wong became the first senior State Department official of the Trump administration to visit Taiwan since Washington approved the Taiwan Travel Act, which has already roiled ties and brought new pressures to Sino-US relations (refers to international relations between the U.S and China).
Interesting enough, with trade war tensions escalating between Beijing and Washington, the pivot by the Trump administration over Taiwan has made the situation much worse.
Local media reports cited Wong as stating the United States’ commitment to Taiwan has never been stronger, and that Washington will get international organizations to strengthen ties with Taipei.
“Taiwan can no longer be excluded unjustly from international fora. Taiwan has much to share with the world,” Wong said at a reception attended by Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen, a member of the pro-independence Democratic Progressive Party.
“I can assure you, the United States government and the United States private sector will do their part to ensure Taiwan’s stellar international example shines brightly,” he added.
In response, the senior editor of the Global Times declared China had to “strike back” against “Washington’s implementation of the Taiwan Travel Act.”
“We must strike back against Washington’s implementation of the Taiwan Travel Act. First, Beijing should not invite senior officials of the US Department of State and Defense who visit Taiwan, to the mainland during their terms. For instance, Wong should not be invited to the mainland until he no longer occupies the post. Senior Taiwan officials who visit the US and meet publicly with high-level US officials should be treated alike. This won’t make the mainland suffer diplomatically. After all, Beijing and Washington have various channels to communicate.”
The editor then said,
China can pressure the US in other areas of bilateral cooperation: for example, the Korean Peninsula issue and Iran nuclear issue. China can also set itself against the US in international organizations such as the UN. In addition, China needs to move fast to establish diplomatic ties with allies of Taiwan to further squeeze the island’s space in the international community.”
At the end of the piece, the editor dropped the mother of all bombshells, “Mainland [China] must prepare itself for a direct military clash in the Taiwan Straits.”
The mainland must also prepare itself for a direct military clash in the Taiwan Straits. It needs to make clear that escalation of US-Taiwan official exchanges will bring serious consequences to Taiwan. This newspaper has suggested that the mainland can send military planes and warships across the Taiwan Straits middle line. This can be implemented gradually depending on the cross-Straits situation.
Preventing the Taiwan independence movement and promoting unification through peaceful ways can be costly, perhaps costing more than the short-term loss brought about by forceful unification. It’s a misunderstanding to think that peaceful unification will be a harmonious and happy process. The Taiwan authority will only turn around when left with no choice. Sticks matter more than flowers on the path to peaceful reunification.
China Uncensored provides us with the knowledge that the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has already made the preparations to invade Taiwan by 2020.
Earlier this week, the New Straits Times reported that China sailed its aircraft carrier through the Taiwan Strait, in response to Wong’s Taipei trip.
Taiwan said Wednesday it had scrambled jets and sent ships to track a Chinese aircraft carrier which passed through the Taiwan Strait as Beijing’s leader gave the island a fierce warning against separatism. The Liaoning and accompanying vessels entered Taiwan’s air defence zone on Tuesday, the same day Chinese President Xi Jinping delivered a blistering nationalistic speech – warning against what he called any attempts to split China.
While the Global Times says China should prepare for military action against Taiwan, it is becoming increasingly obvious that the Trump administration coupled with military–industrial complex is preparing for the next great war in the East. This time around, perhaps, we have gained an important clue that war with China starts with Taiwan.