Essay on Taiwan Policy Memo

3447 Words14 Pages
Maria Serpas
PSCI 356
Dr. Kramer
March 19, 2015

Subject: What should US policy towards military assistance to Taiwan be?

Historical Background: Taiwan, otherwise known as the Republic of China (ROC), has a complicated political status on the world stage. The People’s Republic of China (PRC) lays territorial claims to Taiwan and most countries recognize China as the mainland as Taiwan as an autonomous region within it. However, Taiwan sees itself independent as the true government of China, but only a couple dozen countries recognize it as sovereign government and by technical definition of what constitutes as a sovereign state under the Montevideo Convention of 1933, Taiwan fits the criteria.1 Though before 1971, both countries laid
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Both economic and security threats are culminated in a general consensus that weapons trade between both countries includes only defensive weapons.5 In 1994, the policy towards Taiwan was reviewed, however no changes were made to the arms sales policy.6 The military assistance the US provides Taiwan with, despite being defensive in nature, is still a source of consternation to the PRC and is a problem for its relations with both Taiwan and the US.
Military assistance to Taiwan is essential for Taiwan’s sense of security, but it is also a source of friction with US relations with the PRC. Selling Taiwan an amount of weapons that the PRC considers excessive may lead to increased tensions between both the US and the PRC. Under the TRA, the US still has a degree of obligation in ensuring Taiwanese security. It deems that if US assistance is necessary to maintain peace in the Western Pacific and if Taiwan is forced to make a decision regarding its statehood under non-peaceful means the US will intervene in Taiwan’s affairs. Currently, this is limited to selling defensive weapons, but not providing further military assistance or performing joint drills like those performed in South Korea.
Positive trilateral relations are essential for US economic interests. By maintaining positive
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