Interview: Taiwan’s Man in Washington on Maintaining Relations – Charles Snyder

From Taipei Times:

Taipei Times: Just before he left Washington, your predecessor, David Lee (李大維), told me that one of your main tasks here would be to re-establish or improve trust between Taipei and Washington. Do you agree with that and if so, how can that be accomplished?

Joseph Wu (吳釗燮): I agree with what David Lee said, that trust between Taiwan and the US needs to be restored. But I think that when people think about mutual trust, most think that it comes provided there is restraint on the Taiwanese side. Taiwan has to be prevented from saying or doing something that the US might find difficult to accept.

To me, that’s not the accurate or proper way to restore mutual trust. [Full Text]

See also The Taiwan Status Quo “As We Define It” by Ambassador Harvey Feldman:

The Bush Administration has often said it opposes attempts by either side”China or Taiwan”to alter the status quo in the Taiwan Strait area. This admonition, given by White House or State Department spokespersons, is almost always directed at statements from, or actions taken by, the government in Taipei. Apparently, China’s yearly addition of 100 offensive missiles aimed at Taiwan, for a total now approaching 900, does not count as an alteration of the status quo. Although these administration spokespersons often add the words “as we define it” after “status quo,” they do not, in fact, define it.

So perhaps we should take up the task.

At the most obvious level, the status quo is an entity called China on one side of the Taiwan Strait and an entity called Taiwan on the other. The claims each makes certainly are part of the status quo and so deserve some consideration. [Full Text]

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