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CTC Writes to Wolfowitz

June 7, 2002

The Honorable Paul Wolfowitz
Deputy Secretary of Defense
The Pentagon
Washington, DC 20301

Dear Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz:

On April 9, 2002, with over 80 founding members, we established the Congressional Taiwan Caucus (CTC) in order to promote stronger U.S.-Taiwan relations and to engage in increased dialogue and cooperation with the people and government of Taiwan. Over the past two months, the CTC has met with their legislative counterparts in the legislative Yuan on several occasions to discuss issues of mutual concern and to clarify the policies of both governments and move these policies constructively forward.

As co-chairs of the CTC, we are cognizant of the confusion and sensitivities that often exist concerning the United States policy toward Taiwan. For this reason, we were especially interested in your recent statement concerning U.S.-Taiwan relations at a May 15, 2002 Brookings/Harvard Forum and at a May 29, 2002 Foreign Press Center briefing. Your statements may have been interpreted by certain individuals as a step backwards from the United States finely balanced "one China policy" position and toward support for the People's Republic of China's (PRC) "one China principle," which insists that the status of Taiwan is already determined and that Taiwan is a part of the PRC.

Deputy Secretary Wolfowitz, we believe that your subsequent clarification of U.S. policy toward Taiwan, in an interview with the Central New Agency on May 31, 2002, was important and will help dispel concerns about this issue. In the interview you stated, "The president said from the beginning we have a one-China policy. It basically rests on two propositions. One is that we do not support Taiwan independence, but just as strongly and, I believe, central to the whole notion, we oppose the use of force. The issues have to be settled peacefully. Frankly, any peaceful settlement is fine with the United States."

While we understand and support President Bush's efforts to seek a "peaceful environment" in the Taiwan Strait, we believe that U.S. policies in the region must take into account the rights and well-being of the Taiwanese people who look to America for moral and political support. Taiwan, as a model democracy that upholds the highest standards of political freedom and respect for human rights, deserves the unwavering support of the American people and government. We hope that you will re-affirm our nation's iron-clad commitment to Taiwan as agreed to under the Taiwan Relations Act and take steps to ensure that the Taiwan Strait issue be resolved peacefully and with the express consent of the people of Taiwan.

We hope that you will emphasize strong support for U.S.-Taiwan relations in future remarks, and we look forward to hearing from you concerning U.S. policy toward Taiwan.


Reps. Wexler, Rohrabacher, Brown, Chabot




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