US's intervention in Taiwan question is a wrong option, doomed to fail

China Military Online
Li Jiayao
2024-04-19 21:35:53

By Zhang Hua

Recently, the leaders of the US and Japan met and issued a statement, making groundless accusations against China on issues related to Taiwan, maritime affairs and nuclear weapon policies.

The US-Japan Joint Leaders' Statement and the subsequent US-Japan-Philippines Joint Vision Statement all mentioned the Taiwan question, which unveiled the US's obvious intention to intervene in the Taiwan question. As the leader of the US-Japan and the US-Japan-Philippines cliques, the US seriously violated its commitment to China and ran counter to its own strategic interests with this move.

On the one hand, what the US has done seriously violated its commitment to China on the Taiwan question. The Taiwan question is at the very core of China's core interests, the most important and sensitive issue in China-US relations, and the first red line that must not be crossed in China-US relations. After the founding of the People's Republic of China, the US advocated a policy of hostility toward China and supported for a long time the Chiang Kai-shek clique based on the China's Taiwan island. It was not until the 1970s that Richard Nixon, the then US president decided to begin the process of normalizing the diplomatic relations with China, which was finally established on January 1, 1979. In this process, the US not only withdrew its troops from the Taiwan island, broke diplomatic ties with the Taiwan authorities, and abolished the "Mutual Defense Treaty" with Taiwan, but also reached three China-US joint communiqués, promising to maintain only commercial and cultural exchanges with China's Taiwan island. On April 2 this year, US President Joe Biden had a phone call with China's top leader and once again made commitments to China in which not supporting "Taiwan independence" and pursuing the one-China principle were included. Now, what the US has done has gone beyond the scope of its commitment to China, which is typical breach of promise.

On the other hand, what the US has done sent a wrong signal to the "Taiwan independence" forces. In January 2024, China's Taiwan region held a leadership election, and Lai Ching-te, who described himself as a "pragmatic worker for Taiwan independence", won the election. This time, the US, taking the opportunity of the meeting of the leaders of the US, Japan and the Philippines, tried to interfere in the Taiwan question, which is to send a wrong signal to Lai Ching-te. At present, Lai Ching-te is working on the so-called "inaugural speech" on May 20. After learning of the US-Japan Joint Leaders' statement, he may re-evaluate the past words and deeds of the US and rekindle the desire to engage in "Taiwan independence" separatist activities. However, from the recent going-viral list of Lai Ching-te's so-called "national-security team", it is found that he has arranged some "Taiwan independence diehards" in important posts in the "national security" area, which interprets the information released by the US in a favorable direction for "Taiwan independence".

In fact, getting involved in the Taiwan question at this time does not conform to the strategic interests of the US. The US regards China as its biggest strategic competitor and will not change this view in the short term. However, at this stage, the US intends to manage competition and prevent war. Currently, the US puts its strategic focus on two issues, i.e. the Russia-Ukraine crisis and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. On the battlefield of Russia and Ukraine, the Ukrainian army has been losing ground, and the US has been quarreling over the issue of providing aid to Ukraine internally. If the Ukrainian army is defeated, the strategic advantage of the US in Europe will be reduced, which is unacceptable to the US and its European allies. Meanwhile, the US is under pressure to intervene in the growing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. If Israel does not follow the advice of the US and insists on attacking Iran and other countries or even concocting a sixth Middle East war, the US will be forced to return to the Middle East battlefield.

Whether from the perspective of preserving the strategic credibility of the US, maintaining the status quo in the Taiwan Strait, or being unable to win three regional wars, the US's intervention in the Taiwan question is a wrong option, and is doomed to fail. Therefore, the US should earnestly honor its commitments to China, in particular the commitments made by President Biden, and work with China to maintain the stability of China-US relations and the peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait.

(The author is a researcher from the Institute of Taiwan Studies, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.)

Editor's note: Originally published on, this article is translated from Chinese into English and edited by the China Military Online. The information and opinions in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of

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