hurriyet.com.tr / FOREIGN NEWS, BBC TURKISH
The tension between China and Taiwan peaked with the statements of US President Joe Biden. Speaking to the country’s press, Biden gave a very clear message to China. “If China attacks, the US military will protect Taiwan,” Biden said.
US President Joe Biden, who gave an interview to the American CBS channel, said, “So the US army will defend Taiwan?” When asked, he replied “Yes”.
The interview, released on Sunday, reveals that the White House’s Taiwan policy has not changed. Washington’s Taiwan policy was based on “strategic uncertainty.” While he has not declared that he is fully committed to protecting Taiwan, the American administrations have never ruled out this possibility.
Taiwan, a self-declared government in eastern China; Beijing considers the island its territory. Tensions between Washington and Beijing over Taiwan have recently escalated again.
The US does not recognize Taiwan as a separate country; It counts as part of China and does not develop a separate diplomatic relationship. For example, Taiwan does not have a separate US Embassy. However, it has close relations with the island administration and supports Taiwan in defense.
Biden made this clear in his interview:
“Our one-China policy continues. Taiwan makes its own interpretation of independence. We are not moving in a different direction on this issue, we are not encouraging Taiwan for independence. It is their own decision.”
Biden made similar comments in May; He said that they would defend Taiwan in case of a possible invasion of China. However, immediately after, a statement was made from the White House and it was announced that America had not given up on the ‘One China’ policy that it had adopted for years.
After this interview, the White House again released a statement. “Mr. Biden has once again made it clear that our Taiwan policy has not changed,” the statement said.
Taiwan and China separated during the civil war in 1949. However, China still maintains its claim on the island.
This is Biden’s third statement in a year that takes official policy on Taiwan one step further. The President of the United States openly expressed the possibility of a military operation in October last year and in May this year.
FIRST RESPONSE FROM CHINA TO BIDEN’S WORDS
China’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson said Biden’s statements seriously violated the United States’ important commitment not to support Taiwan’s independence, adding that it “sends a gravely false signal to its pro-independence forces”.
At the beginning of this month, the US gave Taiwan 1.1 billion dollar announced its decision to sell worth of weapons and missile defense systems; This decision led to an escalation of tensions with China.
Tensions escalated further after Speaker of the US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi’s visit to the Island in August – even though Biden said it wasn’t a very good idea.
After the visit, China imposed a five-day military blockade around Taiwan; The US also claimed that the Chinese army was conducting missile tests around the island. However, the Beijing administration did not confirm this claim; Taiwan, on the other hand, argued that the missiles were launched into the atmosphere in a way that did not pose a threat.
DOES THE USA HAVE MILITARY SUPERIORITY AGAINST CHINA?
The open security guarantee given by the US President to Taiwan is one of the hottest topics of recent days. But does America have the military superiority to protect Taiwan as President Biden promised?
Military analysts point out that the US navy is not growing fast enough to meet the potential challenges of fighting off rivals like China and Russia, given the current threat.
China most recently added more than 120 warships to the People’s Liberation Army Navy in 2018. Analysts emphasize that for such a power, the USA should have at least 355 ships.
The Chinese navy has increased its strength even more in the last four years. The Chinese government has built a large fleet of aircraft carriers, armed surface ships and several submarines. Critics point out that unlike China, the United States has reduced its fleet numbers and ship production.