• Cindy Martinez

Taiwan and China Conflict

Taiwan, a separate province of China, is currently in jeopardy due to China’s hand in trying to force Taiwan to join their communist party. Although Taiwan is technically a part of China, the territory has developed its own autonomous government and separate policies, without ever being completely controlled by China until now.
China has been sending aircraft to fly over the island in order to threaten Taiwan to hand themselves over to the mainland. The possibility of an invasion by the Chinese is incredibly high, so much so that Taiwan has authorized US troops onto the island.
Taiwan has always been in constant threat of a Chinese invasion, but relations between the two have not been as precarious as they are today. The issue is that Taiwan sees itself as a nation separate from China, while China hopes to fully gain control over Taiwan. Citizens of Taiwan demonstrate no fear toward the Chinese threat as they express that if something were to happen, it would have by now. Taiwan’s people just want to be able to live freely, and since they have for about 70 years, they show no concern. Although they show no alarm in the threats, this is the first time that Taiwan’s president, Tsai Ing-wen has allowed United State military troops on the island in decades. The last time US militia were on the island was in 1979 after the US official Garrison.
Right now, Taiwan needs to ensure help from other countries in the light of a possible attack. Tsai shows that she is fighting for a free and peaceful democracy, and hopes to receive the help of “like-minded countries.” Taiwan is working hard to develop strong military strategies, but without the help of others, the small island will likely fall. She clearly wants to have amicable relations with China in order to prevent miscommunication and troubles, but as of now, both territories are treading on eggshells.
China always wanted to take control of Taiwan, but especially now that Taiwan has created a name and a strong economy for themselves. After the disputes over the territory starting as early as the 17th century, Taiwan was officially handed over back to the Chinese by Japan after the second World War. Taiwan was viewed as a trophy of what China had accomplished in the war. As the civil war in China began, they were completely taken over by a communist society. About a million citizens who supported Chiang Kai-Shek, the previous ruler, managed to escape from the heavy rule and immigrated to Taiwan, where the last of the Kuomintang government survived. Although they made up a small percentage of the total Taiwanese population, they managed to continue Chiang's ideologies in Taiwan. They elected Lee Teng-hui also known as the “father of democracy” in Taiwan because he helped shape the government they are governed by today. In the 1980s, China tried to unify once again with Taiwan under a phrase that stated, “one country, two systems” but Taiwan declined and China passed an anti-secession law that would allow them to use forceful methods if the island ever tried to completely secede from them.
One of the biggest reasons why China is yearning for Taiwan is due to the success the island has seen in the past year. In 2020, most countries suffered and their economies lacked production. However, throughout this time period, Taiwan has seen a raise in their GDP that surpassed China’s. China, noticing the way the island is flourishing, desires to take over the means of production and its riches.
Tsai has allowed American troops onto the land in order to prepare Taiwanese troops for a possible invasion. As soon as Tsai noticed the strong influence China was having on its people, as well as the protests, the US took it upon themselves to hand over loyalty to the island. The US government sent over strong department officials to visit and train the Taiwanese. Tsai has become an undefeated power in the fight for independence, and she will continue to fight for the independence of her people. As tensions rise, people are anxious to discover what type of relationship China will choose to have with Taiwan.

Sources:
https://www.cnn.com/2021/10/27/asia/tsai-ingwen-taiwan-china-interview-intl-hnk/index.html
https://www.cnn.com/2021/10/15/asia/taiwan-invasion-us-china-tensions-intl-dst-hnk/index.html
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-34729538
https://www.eastasiaforum.org/2021/07/06/taiwans-china-dependency-is-a-double-edged-sword/

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