Bush sells out Taiwan for $27 in Chinese beads?

[via Oxblog]

In a further demonstration of the Bush Administration's rock-solid adherence to principles, Bush's NSC is seriously advocating the abrogation ofthe 1979 Taiwan Relations Act via executive fiat, to say that the US will not defend Taiwan against Red Chinese aggression.

Essentially, the proposal is that "the United States declare that it will not defend Taiwan if Beijing launches a military attack on the island in response to a 'provocation,' i.e., some action or statement by Taiwan that Beijing determines moves in the direction of independence." This means, of course, that even holding democratic elections in Taiwan could be frowned upon, officially, by the US, as Beijing already considers any act of a free people on Taiwan to be a provocation.

From the memo linked above, Bill Kristol and Gary Schmitt write:

Of course, the reason behind the latest maneuverings within the Bush Administration is the recent decision by the present government of Taiwan to hold national referenda on a variety of issues this spring. Beijing fears that Taiwan may eventually decide to hold a referendum on subjects pertaining to independence. China has therefore denounced all referenda on any subject as "provocative." They have even warned darkly of possible "consequences" should Taiwan go ahead with the referenda. In addition, senior Chinese officials have repeatedly demanded that the Bush Administration use American pressure to force Taiwan to abandon all referendum plans.

It appears that the Bush Administration has at least partly caved to Beijing's pressure. Moriarty recently traveled to Taipei to deliver a stern warning against holding any referendum on any subject. Now he wants the administration to offer assurances to Premier Wen that the United States will indeed oppose referenda in Taiwan. This means, in turn, that the administration will effectively be agreeing with Beijing that such referenda constitute a "provocation." So what happens when Taiwan goes ahead and holds its referendum this spring, as it surely will?

We hope the Bush Administration will pull back from this catastrophic change of course. The Clinton Administration bent to China on the issue of Taiwan as well, but never as dangerously as senior Bush Administration officials are now proposing. Nor so immorally. Taiwan is a thriving democracy. The Beijing government remains a tyranny. Will the Bush administration stifle democracy in Taiwan -- actually demanding that it not hold popular votes -- to curry favor with the dictatorship?

Gee, would the Bush Administration cast principle aside and act for political expediency? That is a question which is unfortunately asked, and answered at the same time. There is no reason to believe that the Bush administration, based on its past record alone would stand up to Beijing (unless, of course, they threaten to sell us cheap bras). Throw in the fact that his father is a dedicated mainland sinophile who, while in office, did everything he could to look the other way at Chinese tyranny (even after the Tienanmen massacre), and it doesn't look good for the (perilously) free people of Taiwan.

I wish Bush actually believed the stuff he says in his speeches.

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UPDATE: Added a "?" at the end of the title, since Bush hasn't actually sold them out yet, and thus a slim hope remains that he'll do the right thing.

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This might actually be a

This might actually be a cunning plan. All of the indications (Steven Den Beste wrote about this this week) are that Taiwan is perfectly capable of defending itself from Chinese invasion short of a nuclear attack without our help. In other words, this may be a setup to allow the Taiwanese to fight for thier own freedom, rather than have the "US lapdog" smell over any independence fight.

On the other hand, I don't know that I think that is a good idea. I think that the US should be the world's #1 exporter of freedom (not democracy) and independence from dictators and communists, with China being both. I think that we should let Taiwan take the tip of the spear, but I think that we should have at least a token part (and a CBG is damned sight more than a token.)

Bush basically said that he

Bush basically said that he opposes Taiwan's referendum, thus saying he supports communism, in my opinion. SO MUCH FOR DEMOCRACY!

Wait a minute, remember that 13 colonies thing-wanting a better self-governed allianced opposed to the Crown and its harsh policies? Hmmmmmmmmmmm