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The Importance of Taiwan's Military and Economic Resources

Question:

“Taiwan is more Important to the USA's National Interest than China." Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Provide three well-discussed reasons for your response.

It is true to determine that right now Taiwan has become more important to USA than China in the context of national interest. Against this background, it would be important to argue whether United States is actually having self- interest in terms of Taiwan against China. In this regard, China’s foreign policy would be taken into consideration, US has decided to go in lengths to contain China with the help of Taiwan, so in this regard, Taiwan would fulfill the self interest of the United States of America (Kan & Morrison, 2013). The policy makers of USA are expected this policy through the formulation of Pivot to Asia in order to stop the rising power of China. China looks forward to dominate Asia the way United States dominate the Western countries. However, the neighbors of China along with United States want a solution as they are afraid of its growing power. Therefore, in this matter, the reasons would be given to support the thesis statement properly and to make it more reliable to believe that US is depending on Taiwan than China for National Interest (Kan & Morrison, 2013).

The thesis statement of the topic is that Taiwan is more important to the national interest of USA than China. However, it can be stated that the interest can be partly national and partly international. This is being justified by the reasons which are being stated here. Firstly, Taiwan has an important source of resources of economy and military and the country is also having a giant career of aircraft which can be utilized to control the waters which was close to all important eastern coasts of China. Secondly, the commitment of America to Taiwan is bounded up with the credibility of United States in the region. Thirdly, if USA breaks its military ties with Taiwan or fail to contain crisis with China, then it would send a wrong signal to the other allies of America and which would lead to the fact that the other allies would not rely upon America. Other than the national interest as mentioned, another important aspect to support Taiwan is that maintaining the peace in Asia (Bush, 2015). If Taiwan is abandoned which as a result would enhance China’s geostrategic and military position in Asia and breaking down the bond between the United States and its allies. Accepting Taiwan would improve the credibility of America in the region of Indo pacific and this in turn would add not fuel to the continuing regional race of arms. Hence, it could be state that if America abandon Taiwan then although it would definitely improve the China US relations, however, the growing power of China as mentioned before would likely to affect badly the allies of United States and in further could boost the nuclear proliferation. Therefore, by keeping these important minds in point, it is important to illustrate further these reasons in order to reach a proper justification by keeping in trends the issues and the global problems. John Mearsheimer and other realists have come up with the some valuable points in terms of America’s foreign policy in Asia Pacific and also expressed what are the needs that are needed to be taken care of in order to give protection to the national interests of the country. Finally, for the sake of both national and international interests, America looks forward to give importance to Taiwan because due to its form of Government and promoting its values of democracy to the world (Bush, 2015).

The Importance of Taiwan to US Credibility and Regional Stability

The United States would have strong incentives to make Taiwan a stronger player in its coalition against China. Firstly, it has been noted that having the economic and military resources of Taiwan, United States would definitely in demand for the country’s assets on its side to maintain its strategic balance (Chow, 2014). China is growing powerful, USA for its own interest, would not let China to become powerful, and in this context, there are other reasons, which have been put forwarded to state that Taiwan who is also against China needs help. Then America is being committed to Taiwan is disentangled with the credibility of United States in the region, which carries importance to the Washington’s policy makers, it is because the location of United States is roughly more than six thousand miles from the region of East Asia (Chow, 2014). The country for this has to work harder to convince its allies of Asia especially South Korea and Japan that USA would give them support in the event once they are being threatened by either North Korea or China. America is having powerful incentives to give a framework of a balancing coalition, which is aimed to contain China (Lawrence, 2012).


There are certain important issues which are happening to be troublesome in the relationship between China and United States, that is extended much far beyond the Strait of Taiwan. Whether it is the assertiveness of Beijing towards its near neighbors, some of whom like Philippines or Japan are the important allies of USA, or the issues, which are related to the cyber espionages and the human rights which is examining the bilateral relationship. China being the revisionist power and its claims in the international system does not end with Taiwan (Bush, 2013). However, a growing body suggested that tensions of China US are more of conjectural and it is being a natural result, which occurs initially between the established and rising powers. Furthermore, it can be stated that the abandonment of Taiwan can only happen in strengthening and emboldening the elements of hardline in the arena of the leadership of China, by providing a confirmation that they wish to see that America is retreating from the theatre of Indo- Pacific. This gives a serious blow to the national interest of America of containing China. In the word of John Mearsheimer, “A decision to jettison Taiwan, or even cut back significantly on U.S. support, would prove to an increasingly confident China that Washington has become weak, vacillating and unreliable…Accordingly, a U.S. sacrifice of Taiwan, while gratifying, could not thoroughly slake a continuing need for Beijing to demonstrate its power. Indeed, the sacrifice might promote new appetites and necessitate fresh efforts to satisfy that need”(Christensen, 2015).

The Consequences of Abandoning Taiwan: Impacts on Allies and Regional Arms Races

The main strategic interest that United States is that it is maintaining close ties to Taiwan. According to Randal Schriver, who is the former deputy and the assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs the ambitions of Beijing goes beyond Taiwan. However right now, it is the issue of Taiwan that encourages the modernization in military affairs and that is why from the point of view of national interest, Taiwan is important to United States of America. Taiwan can be described as a prism, which can gain the method of understanding the evolution of China and earning insights into it (Saunders, 2013). By keeping in mind, the extension of Chinese power, the United States and its allies treats Taiwan as an important indicator about what the other countries in the region can expect from the PRC and Washington’s expand. According to the observations made by Mcvadon, Americans are always feel close to Taiwan and each country’s people carry affection for each other and that is why America cannot think of ending relations with Taiwan. Taiwan is more like a brother of same blood, however on the other hand, people’s republic to China is a stranger to USA, the qualities of the country runs cold and hot. The upbringing of China has created many uncertainties (Saunders, 2013; Steinberg & OHanlon, 2015).


The fidelity to the values of America matters to the policy of Taiwan as because the treatment of United States stands as a critical test of the commitment of America to its important values of foreign policy, freedom, democracy and the market economies. The democratic transition of Taiwan has signaled success for the efforts to America in order to enhance the democratization all around the world without any external interferences or bloodshed. According to an American diplomat, Taiwan has evolved into a society that represents important values that the Americans are trying to promote themselves elsewhere in the world. This is mainly based on the national interest of the country of USA and in this respect, Taiwan has received more importance than China. However, from the international interest’s point of view, Taiwan can generate hope to the countries like Middle Eastern countries about the values that the country has promoted by USA (Le, 2014). From the point of values, as well America needs Taiwan than China. According to other authors, It can be stated that Taiwan has the potential to consolidate the political systems and this should be taken as an inspiration by the other societies of the world. In the words of Nancy Bernkopf Tucker, who is the leading historian of the relations between US and Taiwan, stated that United States bear responsibilities to the democracy of Taiwan because the latter made those changes after taking some inspiration from the former. That is why from this point of view, if USA starts reducing their commitment to Taiwan, then it would in long run would affect the position of the country around the world. This would reflect on the fact that the America do not believe in their own values and that is why they would not promote those values to the other countries (Le, 2014; Wu, 2014).

Taiwan as a Prism for Understanding China


The above illustration further depicts why America wants Taiwan than China because the norms of democratization is more important for the country to sustain than the communism in order in terms of the values of government and this would further help America to build their national interest (Feaver, 2014; Maass, 2014). Although, America focuses on the national security interests and on the other hand, it is also true that USA is also carrying important interests all around the world including the country Taiwan. From the national interest point of view, this would further the greatest as well as strongest argument for Washington to maintain its commitment currently to Taipei.

Conclusion

Therefore, to conclude it could be stated that Taiwan is important to America both from the national and international point of view than China. For the purpose of its foreign policy “the pivot to Asia” is a major reason for America to contain China and for this context, Taiwan’s help is important. Accordingly in the topic the reasons have been stated. Other than containing China as a major rising power, it can be stated that the values of Taiwan and a long term relationship between USA and Taiwan must not be abandoned for the sake of security and promoting values to the world.

References

Bush, R. C. (2013). Uncharted Strait: The Future of China-Taiwan Relations. Brookings Institution Press.

Bush, R. C. (2015). At cross purposes: US-Taiwan relations since 1942. Routledge.

Chow, P. C. (2014). Introduction. In The US Strategic Pivot to Asia and Cross-Strait Relations (pp. 3-13). Palgrave Macmillan US.

Christensen, T. J. (2015). The China challenge: Shaping the choices of a rising power. WW Norton & Company.

Feaver, P. (2014). Strategic Retrenchment and Renewal in the American Experience. ARMY WAR COLLEGE CARLISLE BARRACKS PA STRATEGIC STUDIES INSTITUTE.

Kan, S. A., & Morrison, W. M. (2013). US-Taiwan Relationship: Overview of Policy Issues. Current Politics and Economics of Northern and Western Asia, 22(1), 1.

Lawrence, S. V. (2012). US China Relations: Policy Issues. DIANE Publishing.

Le, T. T. (2014). State-Defense Cooperation and the Making of US Foreign Policy in East Asia in the First Clinton and Obama Administrations (Doctoral dissertation, The George Washington University).

Maass, M. (Ed.). (2014). Foreign policies and diplomacies in Asia: changes in practice, concepts, and thinking in a rising region. Amsterdam University Press.

Saunders, P. C. (2013, August). The Rebalance to Asia: US-China Relations and Regional Security. In Strategic Forum (No. 281, p. 1). National Defense University Press.

Steinberg, J., & OHanlon, M. E. (2015). Strategic reassurance and resolve: US-China relations in the twenty-first century. Princeton University Press.

Wu, J. J. (2014). The Future of US-Taiwan Relations. The Diplomat

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