::: TSR Weekly Report
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2019-03-16 | NO.43(11) 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
Marches Warn of Repeat of 1959 Tibet (2019-03-11)
(Taipei Times, By Jason Pan) Taiwanese and Tibetans marched together to commemorate the 60th anniversary of the 1959 Tibetan uprising against China. Taiwan Tibetan Welfare Association Tashi Tseing proudly declared that Tibetans have not given up hope of returning to Tibet despite China's repression. Meanwhile, Uighur democracy advocate Wuer Kaixi warned Taiwanese not to trust China in keeping its promises when signing a peace agreement. <Accessed 2019-03-12>

Beijing Will Increase Pressure on Taiwan If It Rejects One-China Principle, Warns Government Adviser (2019-03-12)
(South China Morning Post, By Kristin Huang) Beijing will tighten the military and diplomatic squeeze on Taiwan if the island’s independence-leaning government refuses to acknowledge the one-China principle, a government adviser warned on Tuesday. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Taiwanese Would Run From 'One Country,Two Systems': Ko Wen-je
 (2019-03-13)
(Taipei Times, By Lee I-chia) During a conference at Taipei City Hall, Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je remarked that China's "one country, two systems" political formula would cause Taiwanese to run away. With regards to President Tsai Ing-wen's seven guidelines to counter the "one country, two systems" policy on Taiwan, Ko replied that since cross-strait exchanges cannot be avoided, the issue has caused tension between China and Taiwan. <Accessed 2019-03-14>

Taiwan Can’t Resist Historic Trend towards Unification, Says Head of Chinese Cross-Strait Group (2019-03-14)
(South China Morning Post, By Kristin Huang) Any effort by Taiwan to resist the “historic trend” towards unification is doomed to failure since Beijing is in a much stronger position to realise its goals, the head of a semi-official Chinese body to handle relations with the island said on Wednesday. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Lawmakers Call for Closure of Web Site
 (2019-03-14)
(Taipei Times, By Chung Li-hua and William Hetherington) Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) lawmakers have urged the National Communications Commission (NCC) to close a Web site that appears to endorse China's 31 measures that seek to attract Taiwanese students and professionals. DPP Legislator Lin Chun-hsien commented that China is using Taiwan's democracy against Taiwan. <Accessed 2019-03-14>

NPP Wants Changes to Cross-Strait Laws (2019-03-14)
(Taipei Times, By Ann Maxon) The New Power Party (NPP) announced that it will propose amendments to cross-strait laws. In the proposal, the NPP suggested to amend the Act Governing Relations Between and People of the Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area and the Referendum Act. The proposed amendments require the Taiwanese government to obtain approval of the Legislative Yuan and conduct a nationwide referendum before the government negotiates with China on issues of Taiwan's sovereignty or war. <Accessed 2019-03-14>

DPP Caucus Calls for Ban on China Streaming Media (2019-03-15)
(Taipei Times, By Su Fun-her and Jonathan Chin) Democratic Progressive Party lawmakers called on regulators to block Chinese media corporations, such as Tencent Holdings and Youku Tudou, from establishing a foothold in Taiwan. <Accessed 2019-03-17>

 Taipei Mayor Rebuts Taiwanese Group's 'Pro-China' Accusations (2019-03-16)
(CNA, By Liang Pei-chi and Emerson Lim) Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je dismissed a statement by the Taiwanese Association of America, which claimed that Ko's pro-China and anti-US stance goes against the association's core values. Meanwhile, Ko remarked that he did not wish to see the hostility between China and Taiwan continue to rise but that both sides should be friendly to each other. <Accessed 2019-03-16>
U.S.-Taiwan Relations
Taiwan Serves as Example for Religious Free Society: U.S. Official (2019-03-11)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) During the opening of the regional religious freedom forum co-organized by Taiwan and the U.S., Sam Brownback, U.S. Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom, remarked that Taiwan is an example for a nation that practices religious freedom for China. Brownback further commented that freedom does not pose a threat to governments and suggested that establishing an alliance that stands for religious freedom is a first step to help ease the suffering of religious people in China. <Accessed 2019-03-12>

U.S. Lawmakers Express Support for Taiwan on 40th Anniversary of TRA
 (2019-03-11)
(CNA, By Tony Liao and Emerson Lim) Several U.S. lawmakers expressed their support of Taiwan's defense capability against China's invasion in a video commemorating the 40th anniversary of the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA). In the video, House Subcommittee on Asia, the Pacific and Nonproliferation Chairman Brad Sherman remarked that the U.S. should increase its engagement with Taiwan and Taiwan is not a bargaining chip. <Accessed 2019-03-12>

Taiwan's 'Warm Power' Will Beat China, Wu Says
 (2019-03-13)
(Taipei Times, By Stacy Hsu) During a speech at the Los Angeles World Affairs Council, Minister of Foreign Affairs Joseph Wu remarked that Taiwan's"'warm power" will trump China's "sharp power". Wu stated that despite China's ongoing pressure to isolate Taiwan in the international space, Taiwan has never once given up on making positive contributions to the world and in defending the liberal world order. <Accessed 2019-03-14> 

Visiting US Ambassador Calls on China to Release Taiwanese Activist (2019-03-13)
(Taipei Times/CNA) US Ambassador-at-Large for International Religious Freedom Sam Brownback has called on the Chinese government to release jailed Taiwanese activist, Lee Ming-che. Brownback remarked that as an advocate for human rights, Lee should not be imprisoned. The visiting ambassador further added that the US continues to look at "additional concrete steps" and specific actions to take in resolving this case. <Accessed 2019-03-14>

Taiwan, U.S. Express Online Support for Muslims in Xinjiang (2019-03-13)
(CNA, By Elaine Hou and Evelyn Kao) The American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) reposted a tweet that Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) posted in relation to China's suppression of the Uighur Muslims in China's Xinjiang Province. In the tweet, both nations expressed their concerns over this issue by stating that one should not be persecuted or brainwashed due to one's race or religion. <Accessed 2019-03-14>

U.S. Concerned About Taiwan's Exclusion from WHA: American Official (2019-03-16)
(CNA, By Rita Cheng and Flor Wang) James Heller, director of the U.S. State Department's Office of Taiwan Coordination, remarked that China's actions in preventing Taiwan from participating in the World Health Assembly (WHA) would hurt cross-strait relations. Heller further added that the U.S. will continue to support Taiwan's efforts in participating in international organizations where statehood is not required for membership. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

Taiwan Mulls F-16 Viper Fighter Purchase From the US (2019-03-12)
(The Diplomat, By Franz-Stefan Gady) The Ministry of National Defense announced that Taiwan is considering purchasing several fighter jets from the United States to boost its defenses against Mainland China. Unconfirmed Taiwanese media sources report that the Republic of China Air Force is considering buying up to 66 Lockheed Martin F-16 Fighting Falcon Viper (V) Block 70 aircraft. Taiwan is already in the process of upgrading its F-16 fleet. <Accessed 2019-03-16>
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Association Says it Will 'Refuse to Greet' Ko in US (2019-03-11)
(Taipei Times, By Lee I-chia) The Taiwanese Association of America announced that it will neither support nor welcome Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je's upcoming visit to the U.S. The association remarked that Ko's China-friendly and anti-US attitude goes against the shared values and friendship between Taiwan and the U.S. The association also urged Taiwanese in the U.S. not to greet Ko. <Accessed 2019-03-12>

Taiwan Chooses to Stand with the Oppressed: President Tsai
 (2019-03-11)
(CNA, By Joseph Yeh) During the opening of a regional forum on religious freedom, President Tsai Ing-wen remarked that Taiwan chooses to stand with people who are oppressed and people who lost their religious freedom under authoritarian regimes. Tsai further added that Taiwan continues its commitment to create a world where people do not live in fear of persecution or exile. <Accessed 2019-03-12>

President Invites Pope to Visit Taiwan
 (2019-03-13)
(CNA, By Huang Ya-shih and Chung Yu-chen) Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen congratulated Pope Francis on the sixth anniversary of his pontificate and thanked the Catholic leader, on behalf of the Taiwanese public, for his constant care and attention to the Catholic Church and the needy. The president also expressed hope that the pope will visit Taiwan in the future. <Accessed 2019-03-14>

El Salvador Suspends End to Trade Deal (2019-03-15)
(Taipei Times) Salvadoran president-elect Nayib Bukele told reporters in a speech at the Washington-based Heritage Foundation that no final decision has been made on whether to reverse the outgoing government’s decision to switch recognition from Taiwan to China. <Accessed 2019-03-17>

President Tsai Offers Condolences to New Zealand Attack Victims (2019-03-16)
(CNA, By Wen Kuei-hsiang, Elaine Hou and Emerson Lim) Taiwan president Tsai Ing-wen expressed her condolences to the families and victims of the fatal shootings at two mosques in New Zealand. According to Presidential Office spokesman Alex Huang, the president stated that the people of Taiwan will stand with New Zealand in fighting against violence and terrorism. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

MOFA Tweets Nauruan President Welcome Video Message
 (2019-03-16)
(CNA, By Elaine Hou and Ko Lin) Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) tweeted a message by Nauru President Baron Divavesi Waqa. The Nauruan president posted a video asking the people of Nauru to extend a warm welcome to President Tsai Ing-wen and her entourage. MOFA thanked the Nauruan president and stated that both nations are like-minded countries, sharing the same goal in promoting IndoPacific peace, stability and prosperity. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

Taiwan Citizen fined for Taking Up Political Post in China (2019-03-16)
(CNA, By Miao Zong-han and Flor Wang) According to the Ministry of Interior (MOI), Ling Yu-shih, a Taiwan national, will be fined for violating the law that forbids Taiwanese from holding political and military posts in China. During a meeting at the annual Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), Ling advocated for Taiwan's unification with China and claimed that the People's Republic of China is the only legitimate government representing all of China. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

Taiwan Is Swept by the ‘Han Wave’ (2019-03-15)
(The Diplomat, By Nick Aspinwall) Han Kuo-yu, mayor of Kaohsiung, is seen as a revolutionary force in Taiwanese politics to both supporters and critics. He continues to grow in popularity despite heavy criticism for his past, and Taiwan is deeply interested in him. He will play a large part in the KMT's 2020 election strategy, regardless of if he runs in the election or not. <Accessed 2019-03-16>
U.S.-China Relations
Taiwan under US–China Competition (2019-02-24)
(United Daily News, By Su Chi) What is most dangerous is that some in Taiwan have consistently mistaken the competition between the U.S. and China as confrontation. They have forgotten that while there is still disparity in might between the US and China at the global level, in the Taiwan Strait it is more like an even match. More importantly, Taiwan’s overall value to the U.S. is far below that to China; and the US willpower regarding Taiwan is much weaker than China’s.

U.S. and China Near Currency Deal, but Provisions May Not Be New (2019-03-10)
(New York Times, By Keith Bradsher) A pending trade agreement between the United States and China could put few restrictions on Beijing’s control over the strength of its currency, potentially inflaming trade hawks in Congress and within the Trump administration itself. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Trump Finds Personal Rapport Goes Only So Far With Xi and Kim (2019-03-11)
(New York Times, By Mark Landler) But Mr. Trump’s honeymoon with Mr. Kim came to an abrupt end in Vietnam last month, and his conviction that agreements between nations are little different than real estate deals between bosses now faces another stiff test with the Chinese president. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Competition, Confrontation, or Collision Course? Reassessing US-China Relations
 (2019-03-12)
(The Diplomat, By Ankit Panda, Orville Schell, and Susan Shirk) Three experts discuss the potential for U.S. China confrontation and the two countries' ongoing bilateral disputes in a roundtable setting. <Accessed 2019-03-09>

How the United States Nudged the European Union towards a Tougher Stand on China (2019-03-13)
(South China Morning Post, By Keegan Elmer) US pressure on China has helped tip the scales in Europe towards a much tougher stand on China but Brussels is also bracing for US-China trade war deal that could leave Europe on the economic outer with its biggest trading partner, analysts said. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

U.S. Steps Up Criticism of China for Detentions in Xinjiang (2019-03-13)
(New York Times, By Nick Cumming-Bruce) As China prepared to defend its record before the United Nations Human Rights Council, the United States on Wednesday led Western governments, academic experts and human rights supporters in challenging Beijing over its mass detention of Muslims in the western region of Xinjiang. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Huawei Pleads Not Guilty to US Charges of Bank Fraud and Violating Iran Sanctions in Case that Triggered a Global Firestorm (2019-03-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Jodi Xu Klein) Huawei pleaded not guilty on Thursday to a 13-count indictment that alleged the world’s largest telecoms equipment maker defrauded US banks by concealing business dealings with Iran in violation of US sanctions. <Accessed 2019-03-20>
China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
“Triad” Military Education and Training Reforms: The PLA’s Cultivation of Talent for Integrated Joint Operations (2019-03-05)
(Jamestown Foundation, By Kevin McCauley) The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) is currently implementing what it calls the “Triad” military education and training reform concept intended to develop more capable joint commanders and staff officers. This reform effort is critical to the implementation of integrated joint operations, and to the transformation of the PLA into an advanced military force. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

China Isn’t Hearing Asia’s Fears About Its Military Buildup
 (2019-03-11)
(The Diplomat, By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan) Even though China's 2019 defense budget represents a slower growth rate than in the past, other Asian nations are sure to bring criticism to China's defense plans. Foreign concerns, already growing higher in the past few years, are largely ignored by China. Chinese analysts, who often simply repeat official party lines, must take note of international criticism to remain cognizant of the changing international political and military landscapes. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

China’s ‘Debt Diplomacy’ Is a Misnomer. Call It ‘Crony Diplomacy.’ (2019-03-12)
(The Diplomat, By Mark Akpaninyie) China is repeatedly accused of "debt diplomacy" as it increases its financial investments around the world. However, very little evidence suggests that China is using a coordinated specific strategy of diplomacy to bring developing countries into its debt for the sake of exerting greater power. Chinese firms motivated by profit, not the state itself, have been exploiting developing nations, and Beijing must control Chinese firms if it wants to change its reputation around the world. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi Heads to Brussels in Wake of EU Report Calling for Tougher Stance towards Beijing (2019-03-14)
(South China Morning Post, By Lee Jeong-ho) China has confirmed that its foreign minister will visit Europe next week, just two days after the European Commission labelled it a “systemic” and economic rival. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Mapping China's Investments in Europe (2019-03-14)
(The Diplomat, By Valbona Zeneli) Chinese foreign direct investment in the European Union (EU) has greatly increased over the last decade. Beijing understands that by carefully becoming an important economic player in the region, China can greater assert political influence over Europe. As European opinions on Chinese investment remain fragmented, China can use the divergent interest to its advantage. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

China Approves New Foreign Investment Law Designed to Level Domestic Playing Field for Overseas Investors (2019-03-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Zhou Xin) China approved its new foreign investment law on Friday, sending the message that Beijing wants to level the playing field for overseas investors and reassure the global community it remains an attractive investment destination. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang Seeks to Assure EU It Won’t Undermine It as Price for Ending US Trade War (2019-03-15)
(South China Morning Post, By Kristin Huang) Chinese Premier Li Keqiang has offered an olive branch to the European Union by saying Beijing will not undermine the bloc’s interests if it reaches a trade deal with the United States. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

China’s Double Standard on Terrorism (2019-03-15)
(The Diplomat, By Bonnie Girard) China refuses to condemn a terrorist group in Pakistan to a United Nations blacklist, despite clear evidence of extremism, yet continues to run "vocational training centers" for Muslim Uyghurs in Xinjiang. China maintains an inconsistent record when dealing with Muslims, and it reflects a certain level of hypocrisy. China's relationship with Pakistan is growing more important, and by blocking the group leader's condemnation, China avoids upsetting the Pakistani government. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

The Relationship Between the Size of China’s Economy and Its Military Posture (2019-03-16)
(The Diplomat, By Robert Farley) If China has indeed overstated its GDP, then the effect that the economy will have on China's defense will also be greater. By underselling the defense budget, China has blurred the true magnitude of its defensive capabilities. The initial inflated growth is not necessarily intentionally inflated reporting; rather, it comes from flawed statistics provided by provincial leaders. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

China in US-Poland Relations: Huawei and Geopolitics (2019-03-14)
(The Diplomat, By Mercy A. Kuo) Mariusz Rukat, Lieutenant-Colonel of the Polish Army reserve, offers thoughts on Huawei's market access in Poland and how the country balances its relationships with both China and the United States. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

Territorial Disputes, the Korean Peninsula, and Other Regional Issues
Territorial Disputes

Can the Philippines Forgo Chinese Investment for Maritime Security? (2019-03-12)
(East Asia Forum, By Aileen S P Baviera) Duterte’s government understandably does not want to be caught between the two major powers as economic ties with China expand. But Beijing’s growing maritime power and recent assertiveness threaten to cancel out the incipient economic and diplomatic benefits of improved relations since 2016. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Time to Speak Up about the South China Sea
 (2019-03-14)
(East Asia Forum, By Lyle J Morris) There appears to be a collective aversion among government officials and heads-of-state in Southeast Asia to speak up in public about Chinese transgressions and coercion in the South China Sea. Such reticence is based on misplaced fear of Chinese repercussions and does a disservice to regional interests, undermines deterrence and needlessly concedes leverage in negotiations with China on territorial disputes or a South China Sea Code of Conduct. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

US Secretary of State Criticizes China’s South China Sea Practices
 (2019-03-14)
(The Diplomat, By Ankit Panda) Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called China out in a speech earlier this week for its use of "debt-trap diplomacy" as well as its actions in the South China Sea. The Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs responded by claiming that nations in the region can address diplomatic disputes in their own ways, pushing back heavily on Secretary Pompeo's comments. Pompeo's comments come in support of the Trump administration's "Free and Open Indo-Pacific" strategic plan, designed to challenge Chinese power in the Indo-Pacific region. <Accessed 2019-03-16>

American B-52 Bombers Fly over Disputed South China Sea for Second Time in 10 Days (2019-03-14)
(South China Morning Post, By Zhenhua Lu) Two US B-52 strategic bombers flew over the contested South China Sea on Wednesday, according to the US Pacific Air Force, the second such flight in 10 days despite China’s objections. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

How China Began World War III in the South China Sea
 (2019-03-16)
(The National Interest, By Kerry K. Gershaneck and James E. Fanell) Taiwan plays a major role in Beijing’s SCS calculus, as well. China’s ruler Xi Jinping has ordered the PLA to be ready to invade Taiwan by 2020. By taking exclusive control of the SCS, China has another angle of attack for its Taiwan invasion force, from the Bashi Channel. <Accessed 2019-03-18>

The Korean Peninsula

North Korea Threatens to Scuttle Talks With the U.S. and Resume Tests
 (2019-03-15)
(New York Times, By Choe Sang-Hun) North Korea threatened on Friday to suspend negotiations with the Trump administration over the North’s nuclear arms program and said its leader, Kim Jong-un, would soon decide whether to resume nuclear and missile tests. <Accessed 2019-03-20>

Contact: James Lee, Senior Editor 

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