Biden Claims U.S. Military Is AGAINST Nancy Pelosi’s Plan
(UnitedVoice.com) – After Russian President Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine in late February, many foreign policy experts said China was closely watching the US response as it considered measures under the One China policy to bring Taiwan back into the fold. In April, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) planned to visit the island in a show of support. Yet, she contracted COVID-19 and postponed the trip.
Recently, it leaked that Pelosi plans to visit Taiwan in August. That set off a firestorm of comments and warnings from China. Additionally, President Joe Biden said the US military had serious concerns about the Speaker’s trip and suggested it might not be a good idea. Will Pelosi go anyway, and if she does, how would Beijing perceive it?
Pelosi Plans Trip Over Chinese and US Military Objections
The last time a Speaker of the House visited Taiwan was in 1997. Then-Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-GA) traveled to the island to reinforce America’s relationship with the small territory. Pelosi’s visit would come at a difficult time for China. Its government is experiencing economic and political strife internally, and relations with the US are also at their worst since 1979.
In April, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi warned his nation would see a trip to Taiwan by the Speaker as a “malicious provocation.” Not much has changed. On Tuesday, July 19, after the news broke of the impending visit, Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijian warned that a potential Pelosi visit to Taiwan would spark a severe response from China and suggested the country might consider military force to protect its sovereign and territorial integrity. Additionally, he warned any visit by a US official to the island would create a “severe negative impact” on relations between China and the US.
On Wednesday, President Joe Biden said the US military expressed concern about the Speaker’s trip. He claims the military doesn’t believe it’s a good idea to take a trip right now, but also stated he doesn’t know the Speaker’s schedule or intention. The Financial Times reported that many people in the White House also expressed concern over Pelosi’s potential visit to Taiwan.
Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre asserts the Biden administration is committed to the One China policy, recognizing China’s position over Taiwan but said the situation remains “unsettled.” Recently, the president said if the communist country attacked the island, the US would protect it from an invasion.
Why Is China Sensitive About a Potential Visit From Pelosi?
Taiwan expert Bonnie Glaser told the Financial Times that the Chinese government was “hypersensitive” towards Congress after lawmakers introduced a series of bills opposing China over the last several years. She said the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) believes Congress and the executive branch are working together to stifle its country. She added that because Pelosi and Biden are both Democrats, Beijing interprets the Speaker’s visit as a strategy to use Taiwan against China.
In June, Defense Minister Wei Fenghe threatened the US, saying the Chinese military would stop any attempt by the US to protect the island territory. He emphasized the People’s Liberation Army wouldn’t flinch if provoked.
Still, Pelosi’s office refuses to say whether she will head to Taiwan over security protocols.
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