Here’s why the result of Taiwan’s election is bad news for the US — RT World News

by Female Kirillv, Ph.D., Director of the Institute of China and Modern Asia of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Professor of the Financial University, Deputy Chairman of the Presidium of the National BRICS Research Committee.

In 2023, the trade volume between both sides of the Taiwan Strait will reach $268 billion. This means that Taipei trades more with its main opponent, Beijing, than with its first ally, Washington. For Chinese companies, Taiwan has been a more important counterparty than the country's main strategic partner, Russia.

These facts are important for understanding the current relationship between the two parts of China. They are inextricably linked not only through shared language, history and culture, but also through hundreds of thousands of trade and production contracts. This may be a deciding factor in the long-term conflict over the island between the great powers.

The elections that took place in Taiwan on January 13 did not succeed in changing this reality. On the contrary, with the exception of the victory of the pro-American candidate Lai Qingdi (with 40% of the votes, which is by no means a constant percentage), the parliamentary elections revealed the defeat of the ruling Democratic Progressive Party, which lost its majority and ten seats in parliament. Legislative Yuan to traditionally “pro-China” Kuomintang Party.

The result has made the island's energy system somewhat unstable, suggesting that the major battle between Washington and Beijing over Taiwan is yet to come. However, the United States has one undeniable advantage in this war – the ability to supply its proxy with weapons and defense systems in anticipation of a violent conflict. China, on the other hand, has much greater influence. Thus, in the coming years, Beijing will not try to solve the Taiwan problem militarily: on the contrary, it will try to shift America's point of view to a military solution. 'Pyrrhic victory' On January 13, to the final defeat of the United States in the upcoming elections on the island.

In his first comments after the election, winning candidate Lai (who will not officially become president until May) spoke peacefully about Beijing and Sino-Taiwanese relations, without in any way trying to show a desire to unilaterally declare the island's independence. . American leaders also spoke in the same context, stressing that they only intend to develop “unofficial” Relations with Taiwan, while continuing to be guided “One China” principle.

As a result, Taiwan is now fully aware that the path to independence has become a dead end, as none of Taipei's closest allies will support the move or recognize the existence of an independent state. “Alternative China.” On the other hand, the path of maintaining the status quo is the most unstable, because in this case the sword of armed conflict between the United States and China will hang over Taiwan, as the island risks losing its entire economy and many economies. The lives of thousands of its citizens.

The only option for Taiwan in the long term is to reach a settlement with mainland China. The kind of complete arrangement that would allow the island to maintain the lifestyle and economic system to which it has become accustomed, and which would allow Beijing to consider the question of reunification closed, or at least with a clear, if distant, solution. .

Hong Kong may partly serve as a model for such a solution, but in the case of Taiwan, the settlement is likely to be softer. It is possible that Beijing and Taipei could agree on a road map for reunification by 2049 – ending the century-long cycle of confrontation. This plan could lead to the establishment of a federal state similar to the European Union or Russia and Belarus.

Naturally, such an outcome would be beneficial to all Chinese on both sides of the Strait, because it would remove all risks of armed conflict or a “hostile takeover” of Taiwan by the People’s Republic of China. These are precisely the outcomes that all those who voted for Leigh on January 13 fear.

There is only one country that would be seriously harmed by such a cross-strait arrangement, namely the United States. Washington has invested too much in the doctrine of containing China, in forming a series of military and political alliances around its borders and a defensive belt on the island of Taiwan itself, only to lose. “Unsinkable aircraft carrier” There is no doubt that the Americans will do everything in their power to oppose any type of agreement between the two parts of China, whatever its type.

But attempts to move Taiwan away from Chinese shores and bring it closer to the American coast do not make sense from a geographical standpoint. As Beijing's economic power grows, the importance of China-Taiwan economic relations will increase (even if bilateral trade temporarily declines in 2023). The status quo that Washington has fought so hard to maintain is actually more favorable to China. It appears that President Lai Qingdi will prove to be a more balanced politician than outgoing leader Tsai Ing-wen. If so, the January 13 election may almost certainly have been won by Beijing, not Washington.

This piece was originally published by IzvestiaTranslated and edited by the RT team

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