Is Taiwan in the upswing?


I think you’d be surprised.
That’s why the cold war was so effective. You know the soviets would back up their threats

I think China would too if pushed against the wall

I like the nice system we have now with no provocation but I think it will eventually come to a head at some point.


Taiwan is just a pawn in the game. China won’t do shit against Taiwan militarily because the US will respond. Simple as that. Nothing changes until that reality changes.


I haven’t been surprised yet. I don’t think China is just being magnanimous myself.

? To start a nuclear war?


My position is still USA won’t risk a war over an island. They will do as much as they did in Crimea, a nice strongly worded letter

They are biding time to get their weapons modernized

Anyway I’m ot… sorry op


The USA isn’t in the habit of abandoning its longstanding commitments, certainly not just because “an island” is involved. Even in Trump’s world, some things aren’t likely to change.

Sure, and if they think they can accomplish it conventionally, they may just do it. It’s not without risk as of now though, and the risk is immense in its scope.


I think you could not be more wrong. Too much at stake for the US and all her allies in the region. If China follows through on any military threats against Taiwan, we are in WW3.


The USA can change commitments as they want

See the scrapping of the Iran deal. And yea I do think ww3 is coming sooner than we think


Apples and oranges. We drew a line in the sand… err water here a long time ago.


Allowing Taiwan to fall to the PRC would be a huge strategic blunder and permanently alter the balance of power in the Asia Pacific in China’s favor. If the PRC is a military threat now, it would be doubly so if this were to happen. American military planners are fully aware of this and it’s unlikely they’d take any chances of letting it happen.


I wonder about this. I don’t see that it would change the strategic picture that dramatically. I think if Taiwan decided to reunify peacefully, we’d be more than happy to have the issue off our plate.


Near complete control over vital South China Sea shipping lanes, strategic wedge between two American allies (Japan and Phils), and ability to project naval power directly into Pacific. American military takes this very seriously.


What would be that different from now? Taiwan isn’t going to project power off its shores or stop China from doing anything without significant help, much less simply getting to the Pacific. Are the Philippines even our ally now? A straight line from Japan to Phil goes through the Pacific anyway. I don’t know, I’ve heard this often but I don’t really get it. I think the commitment itself is much more important. It’s been clear for a long time. If we back down on it that’s not going to be the end of things, by a long shot.


Taiwan isn’t any more relevant or irrelevant than any other country of the same size. It’s as relevant and irrelevant as a tiny island with 23 million inhabitants could be. Diplomatic relations with impoverished shitholes make zero difference.


kind of like Taiwan then “Irrelevant”


Taiwan is absolutely in a upswing, and on many measures way ahead of Japan(and most other Asian countries).

Freedom of press, Taiwan is ranked 42nd, which would be the first place in Asia.I think Reporters without Borders are also opening their first asian offices in Taipei.

Taiwan is on course to be the first country in Asia to legalise same sex marriage(although this has not happened yet), but nonetheless it says Taiwanese are quite progressive.

Taiwan is pushing trough some pretty contentious pension reform, which will put their future finances on a much more stable footing(when again in Japan you got public debt at over 200% gdp)

Also, the economy is doing pretty okay and the vast majority of Taiwanese have seen significant increases in their purchasing power the last 2-3 years as property prices have come down(I think the % who rent here are in single digits, but maybe someone here knows the correct number ?)

In addition to the above there is a serious effort to change the energy mix to be more environmentally friendly, judicial reform, etc. So, a lot of things happening and things do seem to be getting better.


One word: Ucraine.





Once the power plant begins to operate, it will emit 286 tons of particulate matters (PM), 1,438 tons of sulfur oxides, and 1,034 tons of nitrogen oxides — the equivalent of the annual emissions of all the 1.6 million cars in Taipei City and New Taipei city combined. Any pollution emitted from the plant will affect the air quality of six cities in the north, with a combined population of close to 10 million, more than one-third of Taiwan’s total population.

In 2015, the research report “Burden of Disease from Rising Coal-Fired Power Plant Emissions in Southeast Asia” revealed that the air pollution from coal-fired power plants in Taiwan caused nearly 1,000 premature deaths every year, a number only set to increase once the new power plant is built.

Just renewed my eGate authorization this morning. Took like five minutes. Despite all the undeniable improvements of life in Taiwan it’s still one step forward, two steps back . . . .


Speaking of commitments:

If the Taiwan Strait does go hot in the future, will the U.S. be drawn into the fight? As the late China specialist Brian Shea used to remind even the most supposedly seasoned war fighters at U.S. Pacific Command, the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA) has no explicit guarantee requiring the US to come to Taiwan’s defense. It is a common mistake that has grown into legend.

The TRA’s security-commitment falls short of a defense treaty. Whereas the former defense treaty spoke only of armed attack as a pre-requisite for American defense of Taiwan, the TRA expands the number of contingencies that might trigger a U.S. response. But most of the TRA language is rendered as statements of policy and not law, and so lacks binding force. For example, the TRA only states a U.S. policy of having the capacity to resist coercion against Taiwan, not an explicit commitment to use those capabilities. The only thing that a U.S. administration must do in a crisis is report to Congress.


You cannot as of today go 100% renewable energy as it is intermittent, you will need to have some backup in case, well what if there is no wind?

Anyway, the plan is to reduce coal to 30% from 46% where it is today. Gas and renewables will pickup the difference by 2025.