Do you think America will come to Taiwan’s aid if China attacks? Should it?

ChatGPT Summary: As a longtime foreign resident in Taiwan, I’ve observed a notable shift in the local perspective towards the United States. The article from January 20, 2024, underscores this change, reflecting on Taiwan’s longstanding efforts to align closely with the U.S., evident in the various American-themed memorabilia and expressions of unity. However, recent global events, including the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan and its cautious stance in the Ukraine conflict, have stirred doubts among the Taiwanese about America’s dependability as an ally against potential Chinese aggression. This growing skepticism is significantly influencing Taiwan’s defense strategies and its diplomatic posture towards the U.S., with a prevailing concern about potential abandonment in the face of a Chinese offensive. The article points towards a desire in Taiwan for more definitive support from the U.S., to ensure the island’s safety and sovereignty.

I’m on the fence. Will they? Biden probably would, Trump I feel it is less likely. As the article points out, domestic political squabbles in the US could prevent it for the hope of partisan gain.

Should they? Difficult to say. There is the argument that US interests will not be served by abandoning Taiwan, and not just because of the chips. As the article points out, Taiwan isn’t serious enough about its own defence to unequivocally justify US war with China. Many seem to resent the money spent on US weapons, but at the same time they don’t want to serve in the military (not that I blame them, but actions have consequences).

Hopefully we won’t need to find out. The DPP has no reason to push the issue, and Xi had less and less incentive as time goes by

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The real question is will Taiwan put up a fight if China attacks? Based on my conversations with locals over the years my guess is that 30% will defect, 40% - including many high-ranking officials - will run away using their second passports and 20% will actually stand their ground and fight. It will pretty much be a replay of what happened in South Vietnam when the North attacked to force unification.


The UK will welcome many of those with (qualifications and) money, just like those from Hong Kong.
Aren’t most of the world’s antibiotics made in China? What would happen if just that supply chain is stopped. Or it could be like the oil from Russia which travels through Ukraine daily in pipes is never touched, and it is business as usual?

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I think they both would, but for different reasons. Biden is a pragmatist and will pay attention to his advisors, Trump is a wild-card but envies Xi Jin Ping’s power enough that he’ll think making China look bad makes himself look bigger.

Overall, Taiwan is a keystone element in the balance of power, it’s in everyone’s best interests (even China’s at this time) to maintain the status quo.

I.e. @Celeborn 's original question is moot, should China attack it’s because things have changed, and the equation of American interests, and probably everyone else’s, will have changed then as well. :man_shrugging:



And let’s not forget about the Japanese navy either.

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If you check the historical records, the US has always left a clause to allow it to let Taiwan go.

Even though it has signed communiques and laws and it is allegedly bound to support Taiwan due to being its “guardian” after WWII and then ideology during Cold War and current economic/hegemonic dominance struggle, yes.

Listen to Richard Nixon. He said US does not question Taiwan is part of China. That message is repeated consistently by following US leadership, including Biden. The same words: we are bound to protect Taiwan and will do so if it is attacked unprovoked.

And there lies the catch. China can easily stage a black ops false flag attack, play victim. As said, US has invested too much in China and depends on it, as does the rest of the world.

Antibiotics. Medication. Electronics. Cars. Everything. See the recent Stanley cup craze. Watch any review of tumblers. They are all made in China.

How much longer will China stand for being the world 's factory without pulling the rug out of its alleged customers/investors, who do not realize who’s really calling the shots?

I watch old clips of Kissinger etc al and wonder: did they really think they could just use and exploit China and keep it under control like forever? What was the endgame for real?

Political dominance in their backyard, the Americas, has shifted towards China. China has taken over international organizations and internet propaganda. It has allied with traditional US enemies and has them in it payroll.

This is leaning towards direct armed conflict, including nuclear, as the only alternative. And that ain’t happening, not under any leadership, not with a US so divided civil war is ripe. And it is not divided into donkey and elephant, but poor and middle class. Rich will just leave.



Taiwan is a knife in china’s leg. Any time the US wants to twist , it pretty much can. The weapons sales and naval training are an examples of the twisting.

I’ll believe the US is willing to fight World War 3 with China over Taiwan when the US re-opens an embassy in Taiwan.

However, in the meantime, most folks are trying to avoid WW3. :face_with_peeking_eye:


20 percent hardcore and trained is a decent number.

As long as the 30% defecting aren’t as well. :upside_down_face:

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Defecting to the other side is worse than them running away. In fact running away earlier streamlines your defenders. Hopefully they’ll fly out as early as possible.
A 200,000 to 500 000 person, motivated, well armed and well trained military defending a mountainous island can win.

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It’s going to be real scary when China’s gross ChatGPT per capita overtakes the US’s at some point over the coming decades. At that point I think my plan will be to just get out of here. Hopefully the whole world doesn’t go full mad max.

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Then everyone has to get out of the whole island chain . Hopefully the Xi will be gone by then .

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If Trump is re-elected he should do just that.


Canada will take lots of refugees from Taiwan. Just as it does from other countries.

I don’t think the US has a choice but to fight in some way or another. The dominance of the US as a super power since WW2 demands on its ability to protect international trade and project military power. The US just bombed Yemen but the reality is that trade route isn’t a huge deal for the US but a huge deal for Europe and Asian allies. The US didn’t just tell them to handle it themselves for a reason.

Losing Taiwan would show the world it longer can project military power in the Asian pacific and the US would lose pretty much their influence in the region and no longer be able to protect the important trade routes around Taiwan.

It would signal the end of the US as a super power if the US did nothing and I don’t think any sitting president would allow that to happen on their terms.


Right. We control the trade routes so don’t forget it. It’s funny because a few months back the US wasn’t doing much of anything in the region. I tend to think that was a call for China to shut tf up or step in. Xi did step in, and well he should. China needs that oil more than anyone else, and the US doesn’t have to prove their worth but shadowing each tanker when they can just slide back and let the jackals have at them. For all their pretty new ships China has no experience whatsoever maintaining blue water trade routes.

Imagine if the US in troubled times allowed India and Vietnam and Malaysia and the PI to harass Chinese oil tankers. That would be something, and Xi would be bitching about the lawlessness of the ocean. :laughing: