Tsai to Embark on 9-day Trip To Panama, Paraguay (2016-06-23) (China Post/CNA) President Tsai Ing-wen will leave Friday on a nine-day trip that will take her to Panama and Paraguay, two of Taiwan's diplomatic allies, with stopovers in the United States, the Presidential Office confirmed Wednesday.
Taiwan’s Path to TPP is ‘Complicated’: US Expert (2016-06-23) (Taipei Times, By William Lowther) Former American Institute in Taiwan chairman Richard Bush said that membership would fuel Taiwan’s future competitiveness, “but the road from here to there is going to be complicated.”
CATO Promotes Business Ties Between Taiwan and Central American Nations (2016-06-23) (China post, By Emily Chen, Laura Chen, and Dimitri Bruyas) The Central America Trade Office (CATO) aims to use their annual trade show to promote economic relations between Taiwan and the participating Central American nations of Belize, the Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Panama.
Cambodia to Send Taiwanese to China (2016-06-21) (Taipei Times/ AFP) Cambodia yesterday said it would deport 21 Taiwanese nationals arrested on fraud charges to China, ignoring attempts by Taiwanese officials to have them returned instead to Taiwan. Cambodia explains they are deporting the fraud suspects to the mainland, as they see no distinction between China and Taiwan.
Philippines’ Duterte Welcomes ‘New Southbound Policy’ (2016-06-19) (Taipei Times/CNA) Philippine president-elect Rodrigo Duterte has welcomed President Tsai’s “new southbound policy” and said he hopes that Taipei and Manila can deepen bilateral exchanges. This policy is aimed at improving Taiwan’s relations with Southeast Asian countries and reducing Taiwan’s dependence on China. The Philippines, with its fast growing economy, is an important part of that plan.
Wu Jianmin, Former Taiwan-friendly Chinese Diplomat, Dies in Car Crash (2016-06-19) (China Post and China Daily)Wu Jianmin, former Chinese ambassador to France, died in a car accident early Saturday morning in Wuhan, capital of the central province of Hubei. Wu dedicated effort to promoting peaceful cross-strait reconciliation and visited Taiwan several times. Though in line with the vanguard of Chinese scholars in his critique of Taiwanese nationalism and populism, he sought to deal with conflict in the strait with patience and tolerance.
Britain Fires a Shot Heard ’Round the World (2016-06-24) (Wall Street Journal, By Gerard Baker) The immediate animus is against political authority and the broader establishment. Levels of dissatisfaction with leadership have reached revolutionary levels. It’s a paradox of mass modern democracy that voters feel themselves governed by rulers who “neither see nor feel nor know,” a political-business nexus that feeds on itself and promotes its own interests while mouthing platitudes at election time to keep the populace at bay.
-Related: Reviving Progressive Foreign Policy
Reviving Progressive Foreign Policy (2016-06-09) (The National Interest, By James M. Goldgeier and Jonathan Kirshner) Ultimately trade is only unambiguously “better” because the winners from trade gain more than the losers lose, and thus, in theory, the winners could compensate the losers and everybody would be better off. But is that compensation taking place? Or are the winners, already well off, patting themselves on the back for their hard work and good fortune, leaving the losers to fend for themselves? Back to the blackboard with Bart: “free trade demands compensation.”
The Fight Inside China Over the South China Sea (2016-06-23) (Foreign Policy, By Feng Zhang) The three schools of thought share an extremely important area of agreement: the necessity of island-building. During my extensive conversations with leading Chinese scholars and government officials since last year, I have not come across a single person who would say island building is a mistake.
Experts Imagine an Asia Without the US (2016-06-23) (The Diplomat, By Mina Pollmann) Asian observers are much more comfortable when the United States understands that it should be engaged with Asia for its own narrow economic interests. The only interest a country can reliably be expected to defend is its own.
Meet the Future PLA Carrier Strike Group: Main Equipment of the Chinese PLA Navy (2016-06-22) (The Diplomat, By Ben Lowsen) It is tempting to ask whether PLAN might skip the carrier strike group entirely, moving directly into a UAV-heavy targeting model while eschewing the powerful but obsolescing task groups of various vessels. The answer for the foreseeable future is “no.” China and its Navy still see the carrier group as being essential to great power status and are unlikely to abandon it.
Chinese Curb Cyberattacks on U.S. Interests, Report Finds (2016-06-21) (New York Times, By David E. Sanger) Nine months after President Obama and President Xi Jinping of China agreed to a broad crackdown on cyberespionage aimed at curbing the theft of intellectual property, the first detailed study of Chinese hacking has found a sharp drop-off in almost daily raids on Silicon Valley firms, military contractors and other commercial targets.
The odd couple: Warthogs & Growlers in the South China Sea (2016-06-21) (AEI, By Michael Mazza) Taken together, the Warthog and Growler deployments in the Philippines send an important message to China: Your Spratly possessions are vulnerable. We can blind you at will. Should you declare an Air Defense Identification zone, we can make it impossible for you to enforce it.
Defense Secretary Ashton Carter Offers Olive Branch to China (2016-06-21) (The National Interest, By Dave Majumdar) Essentially, Washington is holding out the olive branch in the hopes that China will accept the current order without challenging American dominance. But if it doesn’t, Beijing will find itself facing off against Carter’s Asia-Pacific security network.
America Must Play the Geoeconomics Game (2016-06-20) (The National Interest, By Robert D. Blackwill) Despite having the most powerful economy on earth, the United States too often in the past several decades has increasingly forgotten a tradition that stretches back to the founding of the nation—the systematic use of economic instruments to accomplish geopolitical objectives.
The US and China in East Asia: Leadership and Influence-Insights from Evelyn Goh (2016-06-14) (The Diplomat, By Mercy A. Kuo) The next U.S. President should persuade China to become the world’s most important supporter of a regional and global order that the U.S. wants to uphold. This is a more difficult enterprise because it will involve a change of mindset in Washington, from the current take-it-or-leave-it attitude towards some negotiation with China about reforms it wants to see and the role it wants to play in the international order.