America and the Asia Pacific

Appeals By Taiwan To “Indo-Pacific” Framework

As raised in a recent The Diplomat article, statements by Taiwanese political leaders gesture towards an attempt to situate Taiwan within the framework of the “Indo-Pacific”. The “Indo-Pacific” would be the Trump administration’s preferred terminology to refer to how it strategically envisions America’s role in the geopolitical terrain of what is more commonly referred to as the “Asia Pacific,” or what was referred to as “Trans-Pacific” in the now-defunct Trans-Pacific Partnership... Read More

Pence Comments Suggest Splits Within The Trump Administration

Recent comments by American vice president Mike Pence at the Hudson Institute in Washington DC have made waves in Taiwan, with the perception that such comments are made as the articulation of a stronger pro-Taiwan and more anti-China stance by the US. However, this would be yet another indication of a strong disconnect between Taiwan’s perception of the United States and what is political reality in the United States... Read More

Unusual Actions By America Against Erstwhile Diplomatic Allies Of Taiwan

Do recent American actions indicate stronger support of Taiwan? Namely, American actions as of late have been unusual, with America taking the high-level step of recalling diplomatic representatives to three countries which recently broke ties with the ROC in favor of acknowledging the PRC, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, and Panama... Read More

What Are The Takeaways From Tsai’s US Visit?

A recent visit by Taiwanese president to America has received much attention, with this being seen as a sign of stronger ties between Taiwan and America in the wake of the passage of the Taiwan Travel Act. However, first, the visit represents incremental change far more than it does a substantial break from previous American policy towards Taiwan, and second, one actually observes increased wariness of the Trump administration from the Tsai administration in the course of the visit... Read More

America’s Indo-Pacific Initative Seems To Be Asia Pivot Redux

With the Trump administration touting its “Indo-Pacific initiative,” some in Taiwan have taken this as a hopeful sign that the Trump administration plans to step up pressure against China. It is further hoped that this will mean stronger American support for Taiwan. However, the perpetual dilemma that Taiwan faces regarding the US-Taiwan security relationship continues to loom in the background. Namely, stronger US actions against China does not necessarily entail stronger support for Taiwan, even if it sometimes does. And this is something that many in Taiwan have failed to reckon with... Read More

With America Lurching Ever Rightwards, Could Taiwan’s Progressive Values Become A Liability?

Taiwan has instead sought to emphasize that it should be a member of the international community through good works. This is why one observes that pan-Green political actors, such as current President Tsai Ing-Wen, have a pronounced tendency to try and emphasize Taiwan as a progressive nation-state internationally. But America, Taiwan's major guarantor of security, has continued to lurch rightwards, as observed in America withdrawing from the UN's Human Rights Council and recent Supreme Court rulings upholding Trump's controversial "Muslim ban" and dealing blows to labor and abortion rights... Read More