The last thingSino-American relations needisan acrimonious, politically charged debate in Washington over policy toward China and Taiwan. In sum, changing America’s Taiwan policy could easily induce a poisonous turn in the domestic politics of US China policy without making peaceful unification easier.
IL---Ext---ResiliencyHigh-level political commitmentsensure strengthHammand 15(Andrew, Associate at the Centre for International Affairs, Diplomacy and Strategy at the London School of Economics and a Former UK Government Special Adviser, "US-Beijing Links Relatively Upbeat," 2/4, )Yet, despitethe irritationof some in Beijing toward these events, US-China relations remainonat least amodest upswing. This was symbolized during Obama’s visit to China in November last year, when he and Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) showed international leadership by announcing a bilateral climate change agreement that could help catalyze a new global treaty later this year. Moreover, yesterday, on the same day that Obama was to see the Dalai Lama, top US and Chinese military officials were to meet at the Pentagon for Defense Policy Coordination Talks, addressing confidence-building measures including joint training exercises and exchange programs. Whilefragility and disagreements remainin bilateral relations, with potential setbacks on the horizon, the outlookfor this year isrelatively positive. There are multiple reasons for this from the vantage points of Washington and Beijing. While Chinacontinues to build its international influence, it hasrecently softened its stance onsome foreign policyissues.In part, this reflectsthe influence and changed calculations of Xi, now two years into his presidency, who has gradually extended his writ, including over the military. In the US context, he has called for a “new type of great power relationship” to avoid any sense of the inevitability of conflict between Beijing and Washington. While this new idea is an audacious goal that is unlikely to be fully realized, it reflects his desire totry to takeunnecessary confrontation off the table. To this end, while assertiveness will not disappear from Chinese policy, partly because of domestic public appetite for it, there has recently been reversion to greater diplomacy and defusing of tension. One example was the decision of the Chinese Ministry of Defense in December last year to hold an unprecedented meeting between the two nations’ defense policy planning staffs. Moreover, a party from Beijing visited Washington last fall to discuss cybersecurity issues — a regular bilateral irritant. While Washington does not necessarily believe that this conciliatory behavior will last, it does appear to represent a break with the first 18 months of Xi’s presidency, whenBeijing’s foreign and military positions and rhetoric were more pugnacious. This was showcased by the near-collision between a Chinese warship and the USS