Photo by Tsai Ing-wen: VCG
Three US senators arrived on the island of Taiwan on Sunday morning on a whirlwind visit. They took a military transport plane, a US Air Force C-17 Globemaster III, instead of a civilian plane that normally performs such tasks, which received special attention. There is no doubt that the United States and the island of Taiwan are making new provocations with salami-cutting tactics that they have devised for this provocation.
Neither US nor Taiwanese authorities have deliberately highlighted or discussed the C-17. However, the media at the island’s green camp spoke about it several times and was very enthusiastic. They claimed that the C-17 is the US military’s strategic and tactical airlift and the US military’s primary rapid and long-range transport. They also said that it was the “first landing” in Taiwan and that it was “of great importance.” Western media also said the appearance of a C-17 was “unusual”. The US and Taiwanese authorities downplayed the importance of the C-17, but the Taiwanese media magnified its importance. They want to make the landing of the C-17 on the island a fact that must be accepted by the mainland, paving the way for the United States and Taiwan to further intensify their collusion.
The Taiwanese authorities know they are taking a risk and can trigger an escalation of tensions in the Taiwan Strait. However, they need more tension in the region right now due to the severe epidemic situation, the rising death toll from COVID-19 and growing public dissatisfaction. What they want most is to divert attention from the island to the mainland, using the conflict between the two sides of the strait to distract from the dispute between the authorities of the Progressive Democratic Party (DPP) and the people of Taiwan, and make the residents of Taiwan believe that the high death toll from COVID-19 in Taiwan is the price to pay for facing the mainland.
Taiwanese authorities have rejected vaccines from the mainland in such a critical situation because they fear their so-called anti-China policies will fail if they accept vaccines from the mainland. However, they are in a very difficult situation and there is little hope of containing the epidemic with current policies. In trying to find a way out, they found themselves in the stalemate of the escalating confrontation between the two sides of the strait.
For the mainland, we should not allow US-Taiwan salami cutting tactics to gain a breakthrough, otherwise they will become more daring and intensify their provocation in the future. Mainland China should also beware of the DPP authorities’ current dilemma and avoid helping them out of the situation. Our reaction will be a complete test of will and wisdom.
A series of actions by the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, including bypassing Taiwan and flying over the middle line of the strait, have already dissuaded the Taiwanese authorities. The mainland must maintain the seriousness of this deterrence and must not allow Taiwan’s secessionist forces to become endemic again. In the meantime, none of our countermeasures should provide any major excuse for the DPP authorities, who are now in distress, to displace the emotion of the Taiwanese people, stir up grievances, shirk their responsibility for the failure to act. the fight against COVID-19 and confront the mainland as a new hotbed of Taiwanese public opinion.
How to deal with the salami cutting tactics of the United States and Taiwan? It should be geared towards the ultimate solution of the Taiwan question and achieving good results. This principle is crucial.
Today, the mainland’s military advantage over Taiwan is overwhelming. We also have the ability to prevent US military intervention should a serious cross-strait crisis arise. The mainland already has the dominant power to decide how and at what pace to resolve the Taiwan question. In other words, we have the real freedom to take whatever action we deem necessary. What we have to consider is that the effects must be positive and that the political benefits must far outweigh the costs.
We must make good use of this dominant position, which means that we cannot be led by the United States and Taiwan but must become an active player. So far, the mainland’s military deployment and show of force in the Taiwan Strait has been very successful. Both the Taiwanese authorities and the US government have felt the pressure and the DPP authorities are in panic. The United States and Taiwan really want to regain their initiative, but their strength can no longer keep up. Taiwan’s fight against COVID-19 has been a mess and the Taiwanese authorities can only play tricks to make up for their mistakes and create the illusion that they still dominate the situation in the Taiwan Strait.
Finally, we must believe that the continent can once again defeat the plot between the United States and Taiwan. If we are confident in our own strengths, we need not worry if the continent will suffer a strategic loss. China is examining the overall situation to come up with a grand plan, and it will not lack courage or strategic wisdom as it will represent the sum of the courage and wisdom of the Chinese people.