In response to the Taiwanese president’s meetings with American lawmakers, Beijing began conducting military maneuvers near the island on Saturday, prompting the chairman of the House Select Committee on China to declare that the United States must take the danger against Taiwan seriously.
The Associated Press was informed by Rep. Mike Gallagher, R-Wis., who met with President Tsai Ing-wen last week in California, that he intends to lead his committee to strengthen the island government’s defenses and urge Congress to accelerate military supplies to Taiwan.
Gallagher told the AP, “I think it all just points to what is evident,” asserting that Chinese President Xi Jinping wants to reunite Taiwan with the mainland.
To strengthen our stance of deterrence and denial, Gallagher said, “We need to be moving heaven and earth so that Xi Jinping determines that he just can’t do it.”
The Taiwanese government reported that China conducted military exercises with warships and dozens of fighter jets on Saturday around Taiwan in what was perceived as retaliation for the meeting between U.S. lawmakers and the president of the self-governing island democracy Beijing claims as part of its territory.
More than a dozen members of Congress, including House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, hosted Tsai in a bipartisan session at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, California. House for what was the most delicate stop on her journey across the United States.
The reaction from China to Tsai’s passage through the United States has not yet been as severe as it was in response to Nancy Pelosi’s travel to Taiwan last year when she was the House Speaker.
Despite the daylong encounter infuriating China, McCarthy and Tsai made measured remarks about maintaining the status quo between their nations, which have no formal diplomatic relations.
The Chinese military warned Taiwanese who wish to formally declare their island’s de facto independence by beginning three-day “combat readiness patrols.”
During a civil war, Taiwan broke apart from China in 1949, and the United States formally established diplomatic relations with the Beijing government in 1979, cutting off official connections with Taiwan.
The United States recognizes Beijing’s “one China” policy, which asserts Beijing’s sovereignty over Taiwan, but it rejects this assertion and continues to be Taiwan’s principal source of military and defense aid.
The island must reunite with the mainland, by force if necessary, according to the ruling Communist Party.
Contact with foreign officials, according to China, energizes Taiwanese who seek formal independence, a move the ruling party claims would spark a conflict.
Yet, thus far, China’s initial response has been less harsh than its response to Pelosi’s trip to Taiwan in August. Chinese authorities denounced Tsai’s discussions with lawmakers and announced sanctions against two organizations that hosted her in the U.S.
Gallagher was a U.S. soldier. American politicians won’t be scared by the Chinese, according to a Marine who served deployments in Iraq.
When the contrary is true, he claimed, “it’s an attempt to alter the ideological battle space and, again, an attempt to intimidate us, and make us feel like we’re disrupting the status quo and challenging them.”
According to Gallagher, Congress should endeavor to increase its military ties to Taiwan. He asserted that the U.S. should defend Taiwan by sending weapon systems there more swiftly.
According to him, one suggestion that came out of the meeting was for the U.S. to provide Taiwan with the technology it needs to produce its own military systems.
Following Pelosi’s visit in 2022, China retaliated with its most excellent live-fire exercises in decades, including a missile launch over the island.
Chinese officials did not mention whether the current drills may include a repetition of earlier ones that involved launching missiles into the ocean and disrupting air travel.