Recently my article regarding the new ambiguity doctrine regarding Taiwan’s status and the Anti-Secession Law received comments from legislator Lin Zhuoshui, from which I have benefited greatly. Our differences actually are not that deep, but I would still like to further clarify a few points.
Legislator Lin largely agreed with my first proposal of a new ambiguity doctrine regarding Taiwan’s status. His disagreement is on the interpretation of the U.S.-Taiwan Relations Act, the progenitor of the new ambiguity doctrine. He believes the Act is amicable towards Taiwan and implicitly affirms room for self-determination by the residents of Taiwan. My views are that it is not important whether the Act is amicable. The important point is that the Act, under the premise of respect for China’s claim of sovereignty over Taiwan, legally authorizes the U.S. Executive Branch to determine the necessary actions, using peace and American interest as the criteria. If Taiwan can peacefully achieve independence, the U.S. would of course welcome that. But if not, then even if Taiwan is coerced into re-unification, U.S. would not object, as long as it does not harm American interests,