release. February 15, 2000
ASSAULT ON TSEA UNDERWAY
from Ambassador Li Zhaoxing to all U.S. Senators (see attached)
has launched the PRC’s promised all-out lobbying effort
to stop the Taiwan Security Enhancement Act.
an ominous warning that failure to “approach the Taiwan
issue with extra caution” might “entail explosive developments,”
the Ambassador outlines China’s objections to the TSEA.
He states that the bill: 1)negates the “one China” principle;
2)violates the three China-US Joint Communiqués;
and 3)fans up a “China threat” hysteria.
Ambassador is wrong on all three points,” stated Chen Wen-yen,
President of the Formosan Association for Public Affairs.
“Regarding Mr. Li’s so-called “one China” principle, the
U.S. takes no formal position on the status of Taiwan.
The State Department recently stated, “The PRC government
and the Taiwan authorities have their own ‘one China’ policies.”
In her letter to Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-OH), Assistant
Secretary Barbara Larkin continued, “We are willing
to support any outcome voluntarily agreed to by both sides
of the Taiwan Strait.” The TSEA does not affect this
US position, nor does it make formal the US military relationship
with Taiwan,” Chen concluded.
TSEA does reaffirm the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act (TRA) which
“provides explicit guarantees that the United States will
make available defense articles and services necessary in
such quantity as may be necessary to enable Taiwan to maintain
a sufficient self-defense capability” and “requires timely
reviews by United States military authorities of Taiwan’s
TSEA deals with one missing element in the TRA, which has
no provision for operational training, and with a deficiency
in the implementation of the TRA – effective Administration
consultation with Congress on Taiwan’s security needs.
as Mr. Li wrongly conflates the PRC and US positions on
the “one China” principle, he equates his understanding
of the August 17, 1982 Joint Communique with that of the
initially angered by this Executive agreement, had to be
assured by John Holdridge, then Assistant Secretary of State,
that the Administration undertook the August discussions
with China “with the firm resolve that there were principles
regarding the security of Taiwan which could not be compromised
- principles…embodied in the Taiwan Relations Act.”
Holdridge went on to state unequivocally that “our future
actions concerning arms sales to Taiwan are premised on
a continuation of China’s peaceful policy toward a resolution
of its differences with Taiwan.”
Face, reporter Jim Mann details a “terse, one-page memorandum
that explained his [Reagan’s] own interpretation and understanding
of what he had done. The United States would restrict
arms sales to Taiwan so long as the balance of military
power between China and Taiwan was preserved [author’s emphasis],
has not kept its promises, as evidenced most recently by
the missile firings at Taiwan in 1996 and the consistent
refusal by Chinese officials to renounce the use of force
against Taiwan. The TSEA notes this as well as the
growing military power imbalance in the Taiwan Strait caused
by China’s missile build-up and weapons procurement program.
Mr. Li is wrong about the TSEA fanning the flames of the
“China threat” thesis. The TSEA seeks to “eliminate
ambiguity and convey with clarity continued United States
support for Taiwan, its people, and their ability to maintain
their democracy free from coercion and their society free
from the use of force against them.” The Congress
wants to insure that there is no misunderstanding of US
support for a peaceful resolution of the Taiwan question.
“Lack of clarity could lead to unnecessary misunderstandings
or confrontations between the United States and the People’s
Republic of China, with grave consequences for the security
of the Western Pacific region,” states the bill.
truly wants to have a “constructive strategic partnership
with the United States,” as Ambassador Li states, clearing
up misunderstandings should be most welcome.
Mr. Li is wrong about ‘the infamous FAPA,’ and the TSEA,”
said FAPA President Chen. “The Formosan Association
for Public Affairs was founded in 1982 by the Taiwanese
American community in the United States to represent their
views on democracy and human rights in Taiwan and their
support for self-determination for the people in Taiwan.
It is a U.S. organization, not a ‘Taiwan lobby.’”
letterhead proudly states that we support the establishment
of ‘an independent and democratic’ Taiwan,” Chen continued.
“We are also proud of our role in gathering support for
the TSEA. The TSEA, however, does not promote ‘everything
a Taiwan-independence advocate stands for,’ as Mr. Li alleges.
We believe the people of Taiwan must determine their own
future. We advocate for them to do so in a peaceful
environment, free from coercion. The TSEA insures
US support for this peaceful environment exists.”
more information, call Mike Fonte at 202-547-3686.