::: TSR Weekly Report
2018-10-23 | NO.42(21) epaper |
Note to Readers
TSR is pleased to announce newly published books about Taiwan and East Asia on its website and in its weekly newsletter. If you're a scholar or your book is coming out from an academic press, please send the title of your book and a link to the publisher's web site to TSR's Senior Editor, James Lee (JL18@alumni.princeton.edu).
Cross-Strait Relations
 Taiwan Wants to Invite China's Top Cross-Strait Negotiator to Visit (2018-10-17)
(CNA, By Miao Zong-han and Elizabeth Hsu) A spokeswoman for the Straits Exchange Foundation (SEF) announced that the SEF is planning to invite the head of China's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits (ARATS) to visit Taiwan this year. SEF Deputy Secretary-General Kuan An-lu expressed hope that China will not allow political matters to affect cross-strait exchanges and stated that SEF continues to welcome exchanges with ARATS despite dialogues between both nations came to a standstill since May 2016. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Taiwan Calls on China to End Hostility, Restore Peace: MAC Chief (2018-10-19)
(CNA, By Miao Zong-han and Ko Lin) Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Minister Chen Ming-tong has urged China to stop suppressing Taiwan. The Minister expressed hope that China will work with Taiwan to bring back peace and stability in the region. The Minister also hoped that Chinese leaders can reform China's politics and learn from Taiwan's democratic success. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

No Proof of Chinese Microchips in Devices, NCC Says (2018-10-19)
(Taipei Times, By Shelley Shan) According to the National Communications Commission (NCC), there is no evidence of Chinese microchips in devices. The NCC also stated that the government has set up an Internet of Things (IoT) laboratory to increase inspections on devices. NCC Chairwoman Nicole Chan remarked that while experts did not fully dismiss the fact that it could be possible for such a chip to be implanted in devices, however there is no test currently available that could prove that such a microchip could contact attackers' computers for further commands. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

Rally Held in Taipei to Demand Independence Referendum (2018-10-20)
(CNA, By Lee Hsin-yin)
A protest of organized by the Formosa Alliance took place in Taipei Saturday. The protest of over 50,000 demonstrators was to demand an independence referendum amid growing threats from China. Formosa Alliance spokesman Yang Tsung-li spoke about China’s increased aggression against Taiwan and said that Taiwan needs to declare independence in order to stop China’s bullying. He also criticized the DPP and President Tsai Ing-wen’s administration for its lack of action on this issue. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

China Attempting to Meddle in Taiwan Elections: Intelligence Chief (2018-10-22)
(CNA, By Chen Chun-hua and Shih Hsiu-chuan)
Leu Wen-jong, head of Taiwan’s Investigation Bureau, said in a legislative committee session Monday that Taiwan has intelligence that suggests China is attempting to sway the results of the upcoming local elections. These attempts have mainly been through Chinese funding to candidates’ campaigns in addition to vote-buying. However, Leu could not say much because the cases are currently under investigation by Taiwanese prosecutors. <Accessed 2018-10-23>

2 US Warships Transit Taiwan Strait (2018-10-23)
(The Diplomat, By Steven Stashwick) Two Japan-based U.S. destroyers transited through the Taiwan Strait on October 22. The transit would not be considered a Freedom of Navigation Operation since neither China nor Taiwan lay claim to the high seas between the two territories. This transit follows a similar one made by two different U.S. destroyers in July. <Accessed 2018-10-23>
U.S.-Taiwan Relations
 Beijing Expresses ‘Solemn Concerns’ after US Navy Research Ship Docks in Taiwan (2018-10-17)
(South China Morning Post, By Lawrence Chung) Beijing has expressed “solemn concerns” to Washington over a US navy research ship docking in Taiwan’s southern port city of Kaohsiung, as tensions rise over the trade war and China’s military expansion in the Indo-Pacific. The research vessel has been docked at the Kaohsiung port since Monday for refuelling and crew changes, and it comes at a sensitive time, with ties between China and the US deteriorating over trade, security and strategic issues. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

U.S. Supports Taiwan's Meaningful Participation in Interpol (2018-10-17)
(CNA, By Chiang Chin-yeh and Joseph Yeh) The U.S. announced its support of Taiwan's participation in Interpol and other international organizations after Taiwan urged friendly nations to support Taiwan's participation at Interpol's General Assembly in November. A U.S. State Department spokesperson stated that regardless of whether Taiwan's participation in international organizations requires the status of statehood for membership or not, the U.S. will continue to support Taiwan's membership in international organizations. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

U.S. Vessel Docking in Kaohsiung Unrelated to Military Cooperation (2018-10-17)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) Taiwan's Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said that the American Navy research vessel docking in Kaohsiung is not related to Taiwan-U.S. military cooperation and should not anger China. According to Taiwan International Ports Corp., the U.S. Navy research vessel docked at the port to refuel and to change the crew's arrangements. Meanwhile, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) explained that the vessel's visit is to collect maritime information data due to the American Navy research's cooperation with National Taiwan University (NTU). <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Forum on China­–­­Africa Cooperation Meets the Belt and Road (2018-10-18)
(East Asia Forum, By David H Shinn) The BRI seems to be China’s guiding policy for the FOCAC, but at this stage this is little more than China putting old wine in new bottles. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

President Tsai Discusses Fake Information with U.S. Official (2018-10-19)
(CNA, By Yeh Su-ping and William Yen) Taiwan's President Tsai Ing-wen exchanged experiences and views with U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Scott Busby on issues of combating fake information, the promotion of human rights, and strengthening democracy. The president remarked that both Taiwan and the U.S. seek to uphold the values of freedom, democracy, and human rights. The president also commented on the positive Taiwan-U.S. relations in recent years and expressed hope for greater cooperation between the two nations in the future. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

U.S. Vessel Docked in Kaohsiung Delays Departure for Australia (2018-10-19)
(CNA, By Cheng Chi-feng and Chi Jo-yao) The Taiwan International Ports Corp announced that the American Navy research vessel Thomas G. Thompson that docked in Kaohsiung will be delaying its departure schedule for Australia. Although the corporation reported that the cause for the delay is unknown, there has been rumors that this could be the United States' plan to show its force to China. Meanwhile, Taiwan's Foreign Minister Joseph Wu stated that the vessel's arrival has nothing to do with the military cooperation between Taiwan and the U.S. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

Taiwan’s Cosying Up to Trump Could Spark a China-US War (2018-10-21)
(South China Morning Post, By Cary Huang) As the confrontation between the United States and China escalates, Taiwan is being pushed back to the top of the agenda in American foreign policy circles. And, for its part, Taipei seems keen to exploit this rare opportunity to strengthen its ties with the US, its most important protector, to boost its international standing, which has suffered major setbacks recently due to its diplomatic struggle with Beijing. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

U.S. Military New Warship Passage Through Taiwan Strait: WSJ (2018-10-21)
(CNA, By Ozzy Yin and Evelyn Kao) Citing two U.S. officials, the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) recently reported that the U.S. will consider sending its two naval ships through the Taiwan Strait. The WSJ report also said that a U.S. Navy passage through the Taiwan Strait would send a signal to Taiwan that the U.S. supports Taiwan. During the ASEAN Defense Ministers' Meeting-Plus (ADMM-Plus) in Singapore, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis remarked that since the U.S. can fly and sail in places where international law permits, other countries have the rights to do the same. <Accessed 2018-10-22>

Defense Ministry Confirms Passage of Two U.S. Navy Vessels  (2018-10-22)
(CNA, By Lu Hsin-hui and Ko Lin)
Taiwan’s Ministry of National Defense confirmed the passage of two U.S. Navy vessels through the Taiwan Strait Monday. The passage is thought to be a signal to Beijing amid growing Sino-U.S. tensions, but Taiwan’s MND declined to provide other details, saying that the disclosure of any additional information would be left up to the U.S. government. <Accessed 2018-10-23>

Taiwan is Not A 'Product on A Shelf': Minister Wu (2018-10-23)
(Taipei Times, By Lu Yi-hsuan) Taiwan's Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu expressed disagreement with Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je's Bloomberg interview by stating that Taiwan is independent and thus is not for sale. In the Bloomberg interview, Ko was quoted as saying that Taiwan should understand its place and accept its position as a bargaining chip between the U.S. and China. Wu, on the other hand, defended Taiwan's status as a sovereign nation, whereby the government's goal is to protect the nation's interests. <Accessed 2018-10-24>

U.S. Ship Passage Through Taiwan Strait A 'Wise Move': Easton (2018-10-23)
(CNA, By Rita Cheng and Frances Huang) Ian Easton, a research fellow with a U.S.-based think tank Project 2049 Institute, praised the recent passage of two U.S. warships through the Taiwan Strait as a "wise move". He also expressed hope that the U.S. Navy ships will patrol the Taiwan Strait more as it would be a good way for the U.S. to resume its role in maintaining peace in the region. Easton further added that the presences of American warships will eventually stave off China's suppression toward Taiwan. <Accessed 2018-10-24>
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
 China Should Not Block Taiwan's Interpol Bid: Interior Minister (2018-10-17)
(CNA, By Claudia Liu and Elizabeth Hsu) China is the only country preventing Taiwan from participating in the International Criminal Police Organization's (Interpol) General Assembly in November this year according to Interior Minister Hsu-Kuo-yung. Hsu remarked that this could greatly hamper the international community's fight against drug because international cooperation is imperative to tackle drug smuggling. Meanwhile, National Police Agency Director-General Chen Ja-chin said that although Taiwan and China have cooperated on cracking down drug crimes previously, interactions have slowed down and stopped since President Tsai Ing-wen took office in 2016. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Friendly Nations Urged to Support Taiwan at Interpol (2018-10-17)
(Taipei Times/CNA) A Ministry of Foreign Affairs official stated that Taiwan is seeking friendly nations to support Taiwan's participation at the Interpol's General Assembly next month in Dubai. Taiwan has previously applied to be an observer at the Interpol's general assembly but China stood in the way of Taiwan's admission. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

WTO 'developed' Status to Help Taiwan CPTPP Push: Vice Minister (2018-10-17)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) Taiwan's Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Wang Mei-hua announced that Taiwan has decided to change its WTO status from a "developing" member to "developed" member. Wang stated that this decision will provide Taiwan with greater opportunities to connect to free trade economies globally and also open the door for Taiwan to join regional economic blocs. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

WEF Competitiveness Report Reflects Taiwan Policy Success: Lai (2018-10-17)
(CNA, By Ku Chuan, Pan Tzu-yu, Chen Chun-hua and Evelyn Kao) Taiwan's Premier Lai Cheng-te announced on Wednesday that Taiwan ranks 13th in this year's World Economic Forum's (WEF's) Global Competitiveness Report. Lai applauded the government's hard work in driving economic transformation and upgrading Taiwan's investment environment, which led to Taiwan's achievement and recognition. Lai further added that the Report showed that Taiwan's economy is doing well and that Taiwan's stable economic environment is conducive for investments. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

New Southbound Policy: Minister Confident on Policy Progress (2018-10-17)
(Taipei Times, By Han Cheung) Minister Without Portfolio John Deng announced that the unveiling of the United States' Indo-Pacific strategy and South Korea's "New Southern Policy" this year, demonstrate that Taiwan's New Southbound Policy is on the right track. Deng remarked that the Policy seeks to build a strong base for development in Southeast Asia. Deng also stated that the increasing business opportunities provide clear evidence of the Policy's efforts and success. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Public Backs Registering PRC permit Holders (2018-10-17)
(Taipei Times, By Sean Lin) A recent council survey showed that more than 75% of Taiwanese agree that Taiwanese who are Chinese residency permit holders should not run for public office in Taiwan, Mainland Affairs Council (MAC) Minister Chen Ming-tung announced to Taiwan's lawmakers yesterday. According to Chen, it is not possible to work in China and at the same time be a public servant in Taiwan. Chen further added that the council was drafting a policy requiring Taiwanese holding the Chinese residency permits to register with the council. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Government ‘Obliged to Counter Disinformation’: Foreign Minister (2018-10-18)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh)
Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said Thursday that Taiwan’s government has come under fire recently for its fight against the spread of disinformation but that despite critics’ claims, the government is committed to defending freedom of speech and is not trying to silence critics of the government. Rather, he said, the government is trying to ensure that criticism against it is not based on false information, which has been spread frequently lately. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Taiwan’s Democracy Serves as Model for Region: U.S. Official  (2018-10-18)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh)
U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Scott Busby addressed a workshop in Taipei Thursday, where he praised Taiwan’s democracy. Busby said Taiwan’s democratic achievements and commitment to human rights make it a good example for other countries in the Indo-Pacific region to learn from. He also acknowledged Taiwan’s fight against the spread of disinformation, highlighting the importance of the freedom of true information in the promotion of democracy and freedom. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

MOFA Expresses ‘Strong Dissatisfaction’ at Interpol Rejection (2018-10-18)
(CNA, By Elaine Hou and Flor Wang)
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs expressed its dissatisfaction Thursday with Interpol’s refusal to invite Taiwan to attend the upcoming Interpol general assembly. MOFA spokesman Andrew Lee called attention to the allies of Taiwan that supported Taiwan’s participation and said that Taiwan will continue to work with these countries while attempting to attend a meeting in November. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

China’s Engagement in Latin America Aimed at Isolating Taiwan: Report (2018-10-18)
(CNA, By Chiang Chin-yeh and Ko Lin)
The U.S.-China Economic and Security Review Commission released a report Wednesday titled “China’s Engagement with Latin America and the Caribbean”. The report suggested that China’s increased diplomatic, political, security, and economic cooperation in Latin America is an effort by Beijing to both reduce the U.S.’s involvement in the region and poach Taiwan’s diplomatic allies. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Premier Blames Interpol Rejection on China (2018-10-19)
(CNA, By Wen Kuei-hsiang and Elizabeth Hsu) Premier Lai Ching-te announced that Interpol has rejected Taiwan's request to attend Interpol's General Assembly meeting at Dubai in November. Lai stated that China was behind Interpol's decision in rejecting Taiwan's application. Lai remarked that it is unreasonable for China to prevent Taiwan from making contributions to combat international crimes. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

Pope Francis Has No Plans to Visit Taiwan: Vatican (2018-10-19)
(Taipei Times/AP, Vatican City) According to the Vatican, Pope Francis will not be making any plans to visit Taiwan. There is growing concern that China's ties with the Vatican, in light of the September 22 agreement, could hurt Taiwan's diplomatic relations with the Vatican. However, the Vatican remarked that the agreement with China will not affect Vatican's relations with Taiwan. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

EU Disappointed Over Execution of Death Row Inmate in Taiwan (2018-10-19)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) Madeleine Majorenko, the head of the European Economic and Trade Office (EETO), expressed her disappointment with the execution of a death row inmate that took place in late August. Majorenko criticized Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen administration's excuse that the execution was carried out because Taiwan has not abolish capital punishment. However, Majorenko remarked that the execution will not affect Taiwan's relations with the European Union. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

Taiwan’s Referendums Binding, but May Not be Enforceable: Experts (2018-10-20)
(CNA, By Shih Hsiu-chuan)
There a record number of referendums to be voted on during the upcoming local elections. There will be nine referendums regarding a wide range of issues, such as marriage, food imports, and sporting events. The Referendum Act was recently amended, meaning that there is now a lower threshold of votes needed to pass a referendum. However, speculation remains over whether a passed referendum will necessarily induce change. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

Ministry to Keep Seeking Visit by Pope to Taiwan (2018-10-20)
(Taipei Times, By Stacy Hsu)
Following the Vatican’s declining of Vice President Chen Chien-jen’s invitation for Pope Francis to visit Taiwan, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has said in a press release that it would continue to seek a visit by the pope. There are currently concerns in Taiwan that the Vatican, Taiwan’s only European diplomatic ally, may switch to an alliance with China after the recent deal between the Vatican and China. <Accessed 2018-10-20>

China Trying to Isolate Taiwan: Report (2018-10-21)
(Taipei Times/CNA) According to the US-China Economic and Security Review Commission, China is stepping up its efforts to convince countries in Latin America and the Caribbean to cut diplomatic relations with Taiwan and adhere to the "one China" principle. Despite reaching a truce with Taiwan in 2008 to stop using economic gains to compete with each other for diplomatic allies, China has resumed its "yuan diplomacy" tactics to isolate Taiwan in the international space. <Accessed 2018-10-22>

Election: DPP Stages China-Focused Rally, March in Kaohsiung (2018-10-21)
(Taipei Times, By Ko Yo-hao) As many as 10,000 participants rallied in front of Kaohsiung's National Stadium to voice against China's annexation of Taiwan. Kaohsiung City Council Speaker Kang Yu-cheng urged the public to be extra vigilant in light of those fake news over social media, which is China's tactic to create civil unrest among Taiwanese. Meanwhile, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) spokesman Hung Meng-kai remarked that the rally was part of DPP's plan to attack KMT and the Chinese Communist Party, and that the people will not be tricked again by the DPP. <Accessed 2018-10-22>

KMT Wants Justice Body Merged into 228 Institute (2018-10-21)
(Taipei Times, By Peng Wan-hsin) Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lai Shyh-bao proposed to abolish the Transitional Justice Commission because the three existing laws and an older agency negate the need for a Transitional Justice Commission. Lai instead proposed for a state-funded Memorial Foundation of 228 instead that would incorporate all the functions and responsibilities of the commission into a single agency. <Accessed 2018-10-22>

Referendum Outcomes Can be Sidestepped, Experts Say (2018-10-21)
(Taipei Times/CNA) According to legal experts, although Taiwanese are set to vote in nine referendums alongside the November 24 elections, this does not imply that the referendum results will be implemented. National Chengchi University associate professor of Law Bruce Liao explained that since the law requires the legislature to act and does not empower the elctorate to directly enact legislation, nothing can be done if the government agencies cannot see a measure through. <Accessed 2018-10-22>

Taiwan Is Retaking the Initiative With Its New Southbound Policy (2018-10-23)
(The Diplomat, By Alan Hao Yang and Jeremy Chiang) The New Southbound Policy has, surprisingly, been much more effective at improving Taiwan's relations with South and Southeast Asia than initially believed. The strategy uses Taiwan's position as an economic power powered by democracy as a strong alternative to relations with China. Taiwan has effectively taken initiative in breaking the cycle of pure China power. <Accessed 2018-10-23>

Pope Francis Sends Condolences to Victims of Train Accident in Taiwan (2018-10-23)
(CNA, By Huang Ya-shih and Elizabeth Hsu) Pope Francis sent his condolences via telegram to the victims of the Puyuma express train crash that tragically took place in Taiwan on Sunday. The pope also stated that he will pray for strength, healing, and comfort to be upon the victims and their loved ones. <Accessed 2018-10-24>

Russia Considering Relaxed Rules for Visas (2018-10-23)
(Taipei Times, By Lu Yi-hsuan) Taiwan's Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu announced that Russia will consider relaxing its visa regulations for Taiwanese tourists and business travelers. However, in light of Russia adhering to the "one China" policy, it would be difficult for Russia and Taiwan to reach an agreement. Nonetheless, the Russian newspaper Izvestia reported that Russia is trying to find a way to resolve this matter. <Accessed 2018-10-24>

Premier Rejects Resignation of Transportation Minister (2018-10-23)
(CNA, By Wang Cheng-chung and Lee Hsin-Yin) Taiwan's Premier Lai Ching-te did not accept Transportation Minister Wu Hong-mo's resignation amid the Puyuma express train crash tragedy. Lai remarked that Wu's supervision is required in handling post-disaster issues. Meanwhile, an initial investigation into the driver's negligence in switching off the automatic train protection system could potentially be the cause of the train crash. <Accessed 2018-10-24>

Taiwan Transfers 6 Aid Projects From Former Ally to Nicaragua (2018-10-23)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) Since El Salvador cut diplomatic ties with Taiwan, Taiwan has transferred six projects from El Salvador to Nicaragua, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA). The projects that were transferred are saltwater and freshwater fish farmings, horticulture, agricultural product and marketing, capability enhancement in using geographic information systems, and a "One Town, One Product" project. <Accessed 2018-10-24>
U.S.-China Relations
Trump's China Battles Boost Taiwan's Supporters (2018-10-17)
(Taipei Times/Bloomberg) Nicholas Eberstadt of the American Enterprise Institute opined that the growing tension between the US and China could boost support for Taiwan. Despite the US's adherence to the "one China policy", we are witnessing an increased presence of US warships through the Taiwan Strait and the continuation of weapons sales to Taiwan by the US. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

KMT Stalwarts See Taiwan as Pawn (2018-10-17)
(Taipei Times, By Shelley Shan) During a Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) National Policy Foundation seminar in Taipei, foreign affairs experts warned that the ongoing tension between the U.S. and China should not be seen as benefitting Taiwan. Former KMT legislator Lin Yu-fang remarked that Taiwan's closer ties with the U.S. in light of the declining U.S.-China relations is not beneficial to Taiwan's foreign policy. On the other hand, National Security Council adviser Chiu Kun-shuan stated that Taiwan should not fight with one side while entirely depending on the other. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Jim Mattis, Meeting His Chinese Counterpart, Tries to Ease Tensions
(New York Times, By Helene Cooper) The defense secretary moved to sand down sharp edges of the relationship after Vice President Mike Pence gave a pointed critique of Beijing. <RSS, Accessed 2018-10-18>

China, US Defence Chiefs Meet on Sidelines of Asean Meeting in Singapore (2018-10-18)
(South China Morning Post, By Sarah Zheng) China’s Defence Minister Wei Fenghe held talks with his US counterpart James Mattis at a key regional security summit on Thursday, after a meeting between the two men scheduled for earlier in the month was cancelled due to growing tensions between the two countries. The officials talked for almost 90 minutes on the sidelines of the annual Association for Southeast Asian Nations (Asean) defence ministers’ meeting in Singapore, the main focus of which was the disputed South China Sea. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Donald Trump to Appoint Air Force Veteran David Stilwell to Senior Asian Diplomatic Role, Vital to Overseeing Relations with China (2018-10-18)
(South China Morning Post, By Zhenhua Lu) US President Donald Trump on Wednesday announced his intention to nominate a US Air Force veteran to fill the top East Asia diplomat at the Department of State. According to a statement issued by the White House, the US president intended to nominate David Stilwell of Hawaii to be an assistant secretary of state for East Asian and Pacific affairs, a crucial role overseeing diplomatic relations with 31 Asian countries and areas, including China. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

Donald Trump ‘Targets’ China by Pulling Out of Missile Deal with Russia (2018-10-21)
(South China Morning Post, By Kristin Huang) President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of a nuclear weapons treaty with Russia might appear to be an attack on the United States’ former cold war adversary, but experts suggest that China is the more likely target. Fu Mengzi, deputy director of the China Institute of Contemporary International Relations in Beijing, said that Trump’s plan to tear up the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty (INF) was a sign that Washington was gearing up for a long-term strategic battle with Beijing. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

CFIUS and China: The FIRRMA Factor (2018-10-17)
(The Diplomat, By Mercy A. Kuo) David Fagan explains the role of the Foreign Investment Risk Review Act of 2018 and how it affects Chinese investment in the United States. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

US Deal Makers Back Away from Deep-Pocketed Chinese Investors as Washington Brands Beijing a National Security Threat (2018-10-23)
(South China Morning Post, By Jodi Xu Klein) Just two months after the US moved to tighten controls on foreign investment, citing national security concerns, American deal makers are losing their appetite for selling assets to Chinese buyers – who had proven to be a gold mine because of their penchant for outbidding other suitors. <Accessed 2018-10-27>
China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Religion Is ‘Spiritual Anesthesia’: The Ideology Behind China’s Uyghur Crackdown (2018-10-17)
(The Diplomat, By Bonnie Girard) Chinese policy under the Communist Party views organized religion as "spiritual anesthesia," reflected in their treatment of the Buddhist Tibetans and the Muslim Uyghurs. However, the issue remains that religion is an ideological issue for the CCP, and that is why it remains relatively tricky -- it is not a political or legal situation. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

South Korea and China Relations Warming but Chilly Restrictions Remain
(South China Morning Post, By Laura Zhou) South Korean businesses in China are still feeling the chill of restrictions imposed by Beijing nearly a year after a diplomatic thaw in relations between the two Asian neighbours. While official exchanges between China and South Korea have steadily resumed, deep suspicions remain after last year’s diplomatic row over a US-backed anti-missile system deployed by Seoul, according to South Korean diplomatic sources. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

China’s ‘Re-education Camps’ Likely Counterproductive: U.S. Official  (2018-10-18)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh)
While speaking in Taipei Thursday, U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Scott Busby spoke on China’s political education centers in Xinjiang, which were created to counter terrorism in the region. Busby asserted that he and other U.S. officials see the camps as counterproductive and as a horrible human rights abuse and said that the world needs to be more educated on the situation in Xinjiang. The camps have also come under fire from international human rights group, as well as the U.N. human rights chief. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

A Slowing Chinese Economy Means More Instability (2018-10-18)
(The Diplomat, By Tyler Headley) The Chinese government has done a good job of lifting large groups of people out of poverty over the last few years. However, another reason may be behind the continued economic growth of China: research suggests that slower economic growth rates contribute to higher levels of protests. Rising rates of protests may lead to more effective protests in the future, a sign that the Chinese Communist Party may not be amenable to. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

Is the Golden Age of Chinese Studying Abroad at an End? (2018-10-18)
(The Diplomat, By Joe Barnes) While Chinese students have been going abroad to get their education for decades, due to anti-immigration sentiments in many parts of the developed world as well as an ever-improving Chinese education system, we may see these numbers dropping soon. However, the Chinese education system may soon be making moves to limit free expression and thought, especially within the humanities. While these ideas persist, the demand for Western education will not go away. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

A First: China, EU Launch New Combined Military Exercise (2018-10-18)
(The Diplomat, By Zoe Stanley-Lockman) The European Union and China have completed a joint military exercise in the Gulf of Aden. The significance of such an exercise cannot be understated -- it shows that China is growing more comfortable testing the waters for military activity closer to Europe and keeping its navy farther away from the Chinese mainland. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

China's Former Internet Czar Lu Wei Pleads Guilty to Bribery (2018-10-19)
(The Diplomat, By Charlotte Gao) Lu Wei, the former internet czar of China, pled guilty to bribery in Zhejiang Province on October 19. He was suddenly removed from his office in 2016, and a year later the Chinese Communist Party announced that he was under investigation. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

Why Did Xi Jinping Visit Manchuria? (2018-10-19)
(The Diplomat, By Chi Wang) Xi Jinping's recent trip to Manchuria, while somewhat surprising, can carry great significance. Manchuria, a region on which a large concentration of Chinese history focuses, contains many strategic cities and locations. Xi spoke on the revitalization of the Chinese nation in a region that has recently spent some time out of the limelight, showing that China does not forget about any of its regions. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

Mike Pompeo Warns Panama and Other Nations about Accepting China’s ‘Belt and Road’ Loans (2018-10-20)
(South China Morning Post, By Owen Churchill) US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has issued a warning to Panama and other nations in the region about the potential dangers of accepting Chinese investment, as Beijing expands its development projects to increasingly distant corners of the world. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

As China Warms Up to Israel, Ties Could Cause Security Quandary for the Long-Time US Ally (2018-10-20)
(South China Morning Post, By Kristin Huang) China is preparing to enhance its technological cooperation with Israel as Vice-President Wang Qishan travels to the Middle East next week, but closer ties between the two nations could trigger a security dilemma for Israel amid the rivalry between China and the United States. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

The Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macau Bridge: White Elephant in the Pearl River (2018-10-20)
(The Diplomat, By Martin Sebena) A new bridge linking Hong Kong, Macau, and the Mainland city of Zhuhai is expected to open at the end of October, but Hong Kong citizens are not very excited, as taxpayers there paid for the project, which was ultimately requested by the Mainland government. Very few people will be approved to drive on the road as well. The answer as to why the bridge was built if it will ultimately never recover costs lies in the politics between Hong Kong and China. <Accessed 2018-10-19>

Chinese Foreign Policy under Xi Jinping (2018-10-21)
(East Asia Forum, By Neil Thomas) There is a risk of a ‘new Cold War’ between the United States and China. After decades of bilateral engagement and multilateral collaboration, the Trump administration’s first National Security Strategy (NSS) branded China a ‘revisionist power’ that seeks to ‘displace the United States in the Indo-Pacific region’ and ‘shape a world antithetical to [US] values and interests’ in an age of renewed ‘great power competition’. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

Vatican–China Relations Are Warming Up, But at What Cost? (2018-10-23)
(East Asia Forum, By Gary Sands) The Vatican is drawing closer to China. With the signing in September 2018 of a provisional agreement on the long-contested appointment of bishops in China, many are questioning what this development means for Catholicism in China and for the Vatican’s ties with Taiwan. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

What the Trump Administration's Consideration of a Plan to Ban Chinese Students Says About US-China Competition (2018-10-23)
(The Diplomat, By Robert Farley) The Trump administration, as part of its continuing issues with its relationship with China, seriously considered rejecting all visa applicants for Chinese students to study in the United States. Doing so would have caused significant damage to U.S. academia and universities, but the Trump administration already treats the academic community with relative hostility. While the idea was not adopted, the serious consideration of the proposal showed that the Trump administration is taking this conflict with China extremely seriously. <Accessed 2018-10-23>
Territorial Disputes, the Korean Peninsula, and Other Regional Issues
Territorial Disputes

US Bomber Mission over South China Sea Risks Inflaming Tensions Ahead of Asean Defence Summit (2018-10-18)
(South China Morning Post, By Sarah Zheng) Two US B-52 bombers have flown over the disputed South China Sea, in a move that could inflame tensions ahead of a key regional defence summit in Singapore where the US and Chinese defence ministers are slated to meet. The two US Air Force bombers departed from the Anderson Air Force Base in Guam as part of a “routine training mission in the vicinity of the South China Sea”, the Pacific Air Forces said in a statement on Thursday. <Accessed 2018-10-18>

China Embarks on First Joint Naval Drills with Asean as US Tensions Simmer in South China Sea (2018-10-22)
(South China Morning Post, By Laura Zhou) China and Asean are holding their first joint naval exercises as Beijing targets stronger regional military ties and confronts a growing rivalry with the United States in the disputed South China Sea. The six-day China-Asean Maritime Exercise got under way in Zhanjiang in southern China’s Guangdong province on Monday and will include personnel from all 10 members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

Taiwan to Hold Live-Fire Drill in Spratly Islands Likely to Anger Vietnam (2018-10-23)
(South China Morning Post, By Lawrence Chung) Taiwan will stage a three-day live-fire drill next month on Taiping Island in the disputed waters of the South China Sea to underscore its claimed sovereignty over the Spratly Islands – a move certain to again enrage rival claimant Vietnam. <Accessed 2018-10-27>

The Korean Peninsula

U.S. Bars American Aid Groups From Traveling to North Korea
(New York Times, By Edward Wong) The move comes as the Trump administration seeks to tighten sanctions as part of its maximum-pressure campaign during nuclear negotiations. <RSS, Accessed 2018-10-18>

U.S. and South Korea Suspend Military Drills (2018-10-19)
(New York Times, By Helene Cooper) The decision was made as part of an effort to give the continuing nuclear negotiations with North Korea an opportunity to work, Pentagon officials said on Friday. <RSS, Accessed 2018-10-27>

Contact: James Lee, Senior Editor 

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Forthcoming Publication Mei-Fang Fan, Deliberative Democracy in Taiwan: A Deliberative Systems Perspective (Routledge)
Recent Publication Kerry Gershaneck, "To Win without Fighting: Defining China's Political Warfare" (Expeditions with Marine Corps University Press)
Recent Publication James Lee, "Did Thucydides Believe in Thucydides’ Trap? The History of the Peloponnesian War and Its Relevance to U.S.-China Relations" (Journal of Chinese Political Science)
Recent Publication James Lee, US grand strategy and the origins of the developmental state, Journal of Strategic Studies
Recent Publication Elizabeth Freund Larus, Politics and Society in Contemporary China, 2nd edition (Lynne Rienner Publishers)
Recent Publication John F. Copper, ""Cross-Strait Relations in the Wake of Taiwan’s January 2016 Election: Taiwan’s Narratives" in Chineseness and Modernity in a Changing China: Essays in Honour of Professor Wang Gungwu, edited by Yongnian Zheng and Litao Zhao (World Scientific)
Recent Publication James Lee, American Diplomacy and Export-Oriented Industrialization on Taiwan (Journal of East Asian Studies)
Recent Publication J. Michael Cole, Cross-Strait Relations Since 2016: The End of the Illusion (1st Edition) (Routledge)
Recent Publication Kingsley Edney, Stanley Rosen, and Ying Zhu, Soft Power With Chinese Characteristics: China’s Campaign for Hearts and Minds (1st Edition) (Routledge)
Recent Publication John Franklin Copper, Taiwan: Nation-State or Province? (7th Edition) (Routledge)
Recent Publication Peter Mattis and Matthew Brazil, Chinese Communist Espionage: An Intelligence Primer (U.S. Naval Institute Press)
Recent Publication Takashi Inoguchi and Lien Thi Quynh Le, The Development of Global Legislative Politics: Rousseau and Locke Writ Global (Springer Singapore) (includes analysis of East Asian cases)
Recent Publication Hans Stockton and Yao-Yuan Yeh (eds.), Taiwan: The Development of an Asian Tiger (Lynne Rienner Publishers)
Recent Publication Dafydd Fell and Hsin-Huang Michael Hsiao (eds.), Taiwan Studies Revisited, 1st Edition (Routledge)
TSR received a favorable review by the Foreign Affairs (July/Aug 2000)
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