The relationship between the U.S. and the Republic of China on Taiwan is truly something to behold. The U.S. Congress, via the surprisingly large and bipartisan House and Senate Taiwan Caucuses, deserves an enormous amount of credit for keeping that relationship strong and — yes — exhibiting bold and consistent leadership on the issue despite constant pressure from Communist China. That leadership has allowed Taiwan to prosper, and to evolve into not only an economic powerhouse but a free and highly modern society. Taiwan is a model, and we’ve done well by them.
Thus, I am alarmed to see that political gamesmanship within the legislative Yuan may be threatening to put a strain on this relationship. Apparently, the opposition party is holding up the release of funds earmarked for purchase of military equipment and hardware which the U.S. is ready to sell them and which they need in order to deter aggression from and perhaps invasion by the Communists. Hello? It’s not about money — anyone who follows Taiwan knows the government there is swimming in it — it’s about politics. The security of Taiwan is in constant peril. Hence, these legislators are playing an extremely dangerous game.
Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio), a founding Co-Chairman of the House Taiwan Caucus, apparently threw down a pretty big gauntlet the other day at the Heritage Foundation, God bless him. Taipei Times has this and more.