A bill aimed at ensuring the USA can meet its obligations under the Taiwan Relations Act in the face of the “Chinese Communist Party’s aggressive military build-up” was introduced to the House of Representatives, June 1.
The bill is the identical to the Taiwan Defense Act introduced to the Senate last month.
Introduced by Representative Mike Gallagher, the bill is designed to ensure the Department of Defense maintains the ability to defeat a Chinese invasion against Taiwan.
“Yesterday, we saw the Chinese Communist Party end one country, two systems. No longer can anyone harbor the illusion that the CCP would unify peacefully with Taiwan,” said Rep. Gallagher.
“It’s long past time to end strategic ambiguity and draw a clear red line through the Taiwan Strait. Taiwan’s liberty is a vital national security interest of the United States, and the Taiwan Defense Act helps ensure our military has the capabilities it needs to block CCP aggression.“
A press release released by Representative Gallagher’s office June 1 noted that the bill requires annual reports from 2021 to 2026 identifying: “The objectives that would be necessary to defeat a fait accompli against Taiwan, the joint warfighting capabilities and current efforts to organize, train, and equip US armed forces against a fait accompli, an assessment of whether the programs included in the most recent FYDP enable US armed forces to defeat a fait accompli, and a description of additional investments or force posture adjustments required to secure these objectives.”
The concept of “fait accompli” as defined in the bill refers to China’s use of overwhelming military power to seize control of Taiwan before the US military has time to mount an effective response. In such a case, the USA may be convinced that mounting a response would be prohibitively difficult or costly, the bill states.
“It’s hard to have a more high-quality friend than Taiwan – a vibrant democracy under intense pressure that deserves our full support,” Gallagher wrote in an Op-ed in the National Review, last month.
Gallagher’s Op-ed, titled “It’s Time to Stand with Taiwan,” noted that US support for Taiwan has been defined by a policy of “strategic ambiguity” since the Carter administration.
” Once upon a time, proponents of this strategy may have told themselves that they were calming tensions by deterring both sides from precipitous action: Beijing could not count on our restraint if they opted for invasion, while Taipei could not count on our support if they declared independence,” Gallagher wrote.
“… it is time to end our policy of strategic ambiguity with Taiwan, because there is nothing ambiguous about the CCP’s designs on Taiwan.”
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