between the global hegemon and Asia’s rising power. But the United States’ role in balancing China in Asia is credible only insofar as it can maintain the trust and confidenceof its treaty allies — such as Japan, South Korea and Australia— and partners likeIndia and Vietnam. Abandoning Taiwan to China’s coercion would decimate this trust.Taiwan is a key test of resolveSchmitt and Fly 4/8 2019 Gary J. Schmitt, Director of the Program on American Citizenship and Resident Scholar Strategic Studies, and Jamie M. Fly April 8, 2019 | The American Interest The Taiwan Relations Act at 40: It’s time to deepen ties Asia, Foreign and Defense Policy -deepen-ties/In this context Taiwan’sindependence and security should be particularly important to Washington. With Russia’s annexation of Crimea, invasion of Ukraine and Georgia, and China’s destabilizing actions in the South China Sea and undermining of Hong Kong’s autonomy, Taiwan will be a key test of U.S. resolvein supporting partners in the face of great power pressure. Taiwan isalso important in its own right as a thriving democracy and major U.S. trading partner. No less significant, the island is critical in the region’s balance of power, sitting betweentwo treaty allies (Japan and the Philippines). North and south of the island are the sea gateways to the broader Pacific and America’s base in Guam. In a crisis, Taiwan could be a key partner in containing the Chinese militarywithin the first island chain and preventing it from exerting significant reach into the Western PacificCollapses US credibility Tucker and Glaser 11 Nancy Bernkopf Tucker and Bonnie Glaser. Nancy Bernkopf Tucker is Professor of History at Georgetown University and at the Edmund A. Walsh School of Foreign Service. She also is a Senior Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars and the author of Strait Talk. Bonnie Glaser is a Senior Fellow with the Freeman Chair in China Studies at CSIS and also a Senior Associate with the CSIS Pacific Forum. Should the United States Abandon Taiwan? The Washington Quarterly -public/legacy_files/files/publication/twq11autumntuckerglaser.pdfWashington’s long-term support for Taiwanalso has significance for U.S. allies and friends. Asian countries which look tothe United States to balance China’s rising power may not want Washington to squander resources and energy on Taiwan, but were it to conversely ignore Taiwan’s security, they would see their own safety threatened. U.S. credibility, therefore, is at stake. U.S. inconstancy could convince American allies and friends to rely less on
Washington, undertake an arms race, and/or bandwagon with China. After the Clinton administration dispatched two aircraft carrier battle groups to the area around Taiwan in the 1995— 1996 Taiwan Strait crisis, the region’s confidence in the United States soared and a wave of counterbalancing against China occurred. Japan, Singapore, the Philippines, and other nations all bolstered their security ties with the United States.