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  • Author: Aaron L. Friedberg
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Washington Quarterly
  • Institution: Center for Strategic and International Studies
  • Abstract: Starting in 2009, an increasing number of foreign observers (and many Chinese as well) began to note a shift towards more forceful or “assertive” behavior on the part of Beijing. Among the most frequently cited indications of this trend were: An internal debate among Chinese elites in which some participants advocated edging away from Deng Xiaoping's “hiding and biding” strategy and replacing it with something bolder and more self-confident; A “newly forceful, `triumphalist,' or brash tone in foreign policy pronouncements,” including the more open acknowledgement—and even celebration—of China's increasing power and influence; Stronger reactions, including the threatened use of sanctions and financial leverage, to recurrent irritations in U.S.–China relations such as arms sales to Taiwan and presidential visits with the Dalai Lama; More open and frequent displays of China's growing military capabilities including larger, long-range air and naval exercises, and demonstrating or deploying new weapons systems; A markedly increased willingness to use threats and displays of force on issues relating to the control of the waters, air space, surface features, and resources off China's coasts. These include ongoing disputes with the Philippines and Vietnam (among others) in the South China Sea, with Japan in the East China Sea, and with the United States regarding its conduct of surveillance and military exercises in areas from the Yellow Sea to the vicinity of Hainan Island.
  • Political Geography: United States, China, Taiwan, Beijing
  • Author: Gary D. Rawnsley
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Current Chinese Affairs
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: This paper analyses how Taiwan exercises “soft power” and uses public diplomacy to engage with the international community, and to compensate for the absence of formal diplomatic relations with major powers. The research suggests that Taiwan's strategies of international engagement are constrained by its external and internal political environments. The international system (structure) has locked Taiwan into a set of challenging arrangements over which it has little control or influence, while Taiwan's public diplomacy architecture and the activities organised and undertaken by its government agencies in Taibei and its representatives abroad (agency) reveal, at best, a misunderstanding of how Taiwan's soft power might be exercised more effectively. The strategic thematic choices of legitimacy (invoking Taiwan's international status) versus credibility (which in soft power terms offers the most benefit), and the decision to privilege cultural over political themes in international communications, all have profound effects on the success of Taiwan's soft power.
  • Political Geography: Taiwan
  • Author: Timothy Steven Rich, Vasabjit Banerjee
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Current Chinese Affairs
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: This article highlights the precarious nature of Taiwan's diplomatic relations in Africa. Whereas Cold War rationales initially benefitted Taiwan, economic interests now appear to incentivize African countries to establish relations with China. Through qualitative and quantitative data covering much of the post-World War II era, this analysis argues that economic factors have trumped political rationales for Taiwanese–African relations. In addition, this article problematizes both conceptions of diplomatic recognition and Taiwan's enduring relations with Africa.
  • Political Geography: Africa, China, Taiwan
  • Author: Alexander C. Tan, Michael I. Magcamit
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Relations of the Asia-Pacific
  • Institution: Japan Association of International Relations
  • Abstract: This paper seeks to explore and explain the process through which Taiwan utilizes free trade – both at multilateral and bilateral levels – in enhancing its shrinking de facto sovereignty against the backdrop of ubiquitous 'China factor' in the twenty-first century. It argues that China's sinicization project creates a scenario wherein increasing cross-strait stability ironically leads to decreasing de facto sovereignty for Taiwan. Due to this existing cross-strait security dilemma, Taiwanese leaders are being forced to preserve the island's quasi-independent statehood due to fears of losing its remaining de facto autonomy over domestic and foreign affairs. In essence, Taiwan chooses to be de facto free by remaining de jure unfree. Taiwan's sovereign space, therefore, becomes a pivotal referent object of its national security policy and strategy. Balancing between the two paradoxical interests of enhancing sovereignty while maintaining the Chinese-dominated cross-strait status-quo underlines the relentless games, changes, and fears that Taiwan confronts today.
  • Topic: Security
  • Political Geography: China, Taiwan
  • Author: Xiaochen Su, Chung-li Wu, Yen-chieh Liao, Tai-De Lee, Chen Tsao
  • Publication Date: 02-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: International Relations of the Asia-Pacific
  • Institution: Japan Association of International Relations
  • Abstract: The future of nuclear energy use has become increasingly contentious across the world. This is especially the case in Taiwan, which simultaneously suffers from the instabilities associated with fossil fuel imports and widespread public doubts about the government's ability to handle a Fukushima-scale disaster, while also being increasingly dependent on nuclear energy. This study employs the 2013 Taiwan Election and Democratization Study (TEDS) survey on the Lungmen Nuclear Power Plant to gauge public opinion on the nuclear issue. The results demonstrate that while the public tends to be pro-nuclear when they are informed about the financial consequences of abandoning nuclear power and reassured about safety concerns, opponents of nuclear power, though numerically fewer, tend to be more vocal. Further research is needed to determine the exact logic of the public's decision making, based on a more precise set of preconditions.
  • Topic: Nuclear Power
  • Political Geography: Taiwan
  • Author: David Curtis Wright
  • Publication Date: 03-2015
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: Sometime around 7:00 pm on the evening of Tuesday 18 March 2014, a group of several hundred Taiwanese students, civic group members, activists, and other protestors stormed through the outer gates and walls of the Legislative Yuan (Taiwan's legislature) in Taipei, forced their way through police cordons into the buildings of the legislature's compound, and finally broke into the Legislative Chamber itself. They quickly barricaded themselves in the chamber where Taiwan's laws are made by piling up the legislators' swiveled chairs in front of all entrances to the chamber and binding them together with ropes into large clumpy bulwarks. Police forces unsuccessfully attempted on several occasions to push their way through these barriers. Several hundred protestors (mostly young students) occupied the chamber overnight, and the police tried several other tactics to oust them, including shutting off the building's water, switching off its electricity, turning off its air conditioning, and locking its washrooms (restrooms). Aware of public opinion strongly against harshly treating the students, the police soon backed off and restored the utilities. Within 24 hours the occupation grew into massive street rallies in support of the students, and these in turn grew into the Sunflower Movement, so named after a supportive florist who handed out a thousand or more sunflowers to protesters outside the Legislative Yuan. The sunflower quickly came to symbolize the hopes of the protestors for openness, as to sunlight, in contrast to the perceived dark backroom legerdemain of the ruling KMT (Kuomintang; Chinese Nationalist) government, which had a majority in the legislature and struck many people in Taiwan as preferring to operate out of public view and beyond opposition party scrutiny.
  • Political Geography: Taiwan
  • Author: Andrew Scobell
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: ANDREW SCOBELL discusses the ongoing rivalry between China and Taiwan. He explains why Beijing continues to view Taipei as a serious rival despite the growing hard power imbalance in China's favor. He argues that Beijing's concern appears focused on the potency of Taipei's soft power-Taiwan's emergence as a vibrant participatory democracy.
  • Political Geography: China, Taiwan
  • Author: Yinan He
  • Publication Date: 09-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Political Science Quarterly
  • Institution: Academy of Political Science
  • Abstract: YINAN HE explores how identity narratives have shaped Taiwan's foreign policy toward China and Japan. The author argues that the political discourse of the two "others" defining Taiwan's national identity has been frequently employed by political elites battling over whom the Taiwanese are and where their future lies. She claims that Taiwan's neutrality depends upon Beijing maintaining a moderate approach toward Taiwan and upon stable Sino-Japanese relations.
  • Topic: Foreign Policy, Politics
  • Political Geography: Taiwan, Beijing
  • Author: Andre Beckershoff
  • Publication Date: 03-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Current Chinese Affairs
  • Institution: German Institute of Global and Area Studies
  • Abstract: The recent rapprochement between China and Taiwan cannot be understood if our conceptual apparatus is unable to cope with the distinctive new quality of cross-Strait relations. A critical framework provides a transnational account of cross-Strait dynamics. An analysis of the KMT–CCP Forum through the lens of the neo-Gramscian notion of hegemony sheds light on the Forum's strategies, mechanisms, practices and instruments to secure consent for cross-Strait rapprochement. While this mode of governance has broadened the KMT's strategic options, it has also compromised Taiwanese democracy.
  • Political Geography: China, Taiwan
  • Author: Matsahiro Matsumura
  • Publication Date: 06-2014
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: Journal of Military and Strategic Studies
  • Institution: Centre for Military, Security and Strategic Studies
  • Abstract: The world has seen the international distribution of power gradually shifting, driven in great part by China's rise and America's relative decline. Almost continuously for two decades, China has kept double-digit growth rates in defense spending and, consequently, made military build-ups that are unprecedented in modern international history. China has also demonstrated a series of increasingly assertive diplomatic and military actions as related to its irredentist claims to Taiwan, the Senkaku Islands, the Spratly Islands, and the Paracel Islands, among others. Although the regional security order of the East Asia and the Western Pacific appears sufficiently stable, the US and its major regional allies together have to deter and, if necessary, defeat possible China's armed aggression against the territorial status quo. Doing so is a challenge even for the hegemonic US, on the grounds that the aftermath of the 2008 Lehman Shock has seriously impaired the health of the US political economy, and that its defense spending is anticipated to undergo one major cut after another, at least, for a decade to come.
  • Political Geography: United States, Japan, China, America, Taiwan, East Asia