::: TSR Weekly Report
2020-12-05 | NO.44(46) epaper |
Recent Publication
Kerry Gershaneck, "Political Warfare: Strategies for Combating China’s Plan to 'Win Without Fighting" (Marine Corps University Press) (Book Review)
Cross-Strait Relations
More and More Taiwanese Favor Independence – and Think the US Would Help Fight for It (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Dennis V. Hickey) Does the DPP landslide in the 2020 election reflect a shift in political party alignments within Taiwan? Is popular support for the DPP’s independence-leaning agenda growing? Has opinion shifted with respect to Taipei’s complex relations with Beijing and Washington? The discussion below seeks to shed some light on these and other questions by comparing the findings of the latest Taiwan National Security Survey (TNSS) – conducted on October 27-31 of this year – with the TNSS polls of January 3-7, 2019 and November 29-December 5, 2017.

Chinese Media’s Threats to Draw Taipei Rebuff: Source
(Taipei Times, By Lee Hsin-fang and William Hetherington) The government is implementing measures to respond to state-owned Chinese media’s threats against Taiwanese independence advocates, a national security official said on Friday.

Has Taiwan Always Been Part of China? (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Gerrit van der Wees) The historical relationship is more complicated than Beijing would like to admit.

Taiwan to Implement Special Visa, Investment Rules for Hong Kongers (2020-12-04)
(CNA, By Lai Yen-hsi and Chung Yu-chen) Taiwan will introduce a special set of immigration and other rules for people from Hong Kong who wish to enter for the purposes of study, work or investment, the nation's top China policymaking body said Thursday, after three pro-democracy activists in Hong Kong were sentenced to prison the previous day.
U.S.-Taiwan Relations
U.S., Taiwan to Push an Alternative to China’s Belt and Road (2020-11-27)
(Bloomberg, By Miaojung Lin and Chris Horton) Taiwan and the U.S. are moving ahead with a plan to finance infrastructure and energy projects in Asia and Latin America, using capital raised from the private sector to ensure greater transparency, Minister Su Jain-rong said in an interview Wednesday in Taipei. He said he hopes to see the first projects start within the next year or two.

Taiwan, U.S. Launch Language Education Initiative (2020-12-03)
(CNA, By Emerson Lim) The U.S.-Taiwan Education Initiative, as it is called, is set against the backdrop of two distinct trends -- the closing of Confucius Institutes by many universities around the world and President Tsai Ing-wen's (蔡英文) goal to make Taiwan fully bilingual by 2030, Brent Christensen, director of the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT), said.

Congressional Panel Proposes Upgrading US Envoy to Taiwan to Ambassador Level (2020-12-02)
(Taiwan News, By Keoni Everington) A U.S. congressional panel on Tuesday (Dec. 1) called for the status of the director of the de facto U.S. embassy in Taiwan to be upgraded to a level on par with an ambassador. Link to full report from USCC

US Defense Bill Calls for Partnership with Taiwan (2020-12-04)
(Taipei Times) The US Congress on Thursday unveiled a defense bill that reaffirms the US’ commitment to Taiwan and includes provisions to explore a medical partnership between the nations.
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Taiwan Technical Mission Opens in Somaliland (2020-12-01)
(CNA, By Chen Yun-yu and Joseph Yeh) Taiwan opened a technical mission in the self-declared East African state of Somaliland on Tuesday, launching bilateral cooperation in healthcare, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and agriculture.

President Tsai Praises Departing British Representative to Taiwan (2020-12-01)
(CNA, By Wen Kuei-hsiang and Ko Lin) President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) on Tuesday hailed the contributions of the United Kingdom's departing representative to Taiwan, and she expressed the hope that bilateral relations will continue to build on the existing solid foundation.

Norway-Based Taiwanese Chase ID Suit (2020-12-03)
(Taipei Times/CNA) A group of overseas Taiwanese in Norway are taking a case on their national identity to the European Court of Human Rights — with plans to file the case in the first half of next year — after Norway’s Supreme Court rejected their appeal to change their listed nationality from “China” to “Taiwan,” Joseph Liu, a Taiwanese lawyer living in Norway, told reporters on Monday.

Taiwan-Singapore Association Launched (2020-12-05)
(Taipei Times, By Wu Su-wei and Jake Chung) The event commemorating the formation of the Republic of China (Taiwan)-Singapore Inter-Parliamentary Amity Association, which is to be chaired by Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣), was attended by Taiwan’s Representative to Singapore Yeh Wei-chieh (葉偉傑).

President Tsai Makes It on Financial Times' List of Influential Women (2020-12-05)
(CNA, By Tai Ya-chen and Matthew Mazzetta) Readers of the Financial Times have selected Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) as one of the most influential women of 2020, alongside figures such as United States Vice President-elect Kamala Harris and New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.
U.S.-China Relations
China’s Xi Finally Congratulates US President-Elect Biden (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) Xi’s call came shortly after the official transition process began.

China Is National Security Threat No. 1
(Wall Street Journal, By John Ratcliffe)As Director of National Intelligence, I am entrusted with access to more intelligence than any member of the U.S. government other than the president. If I could communicate one thing to the American people from this unique vantage point, it is that the People’s Republic of China poses the greatest threat to America today, and the greatest threat to democracy and freedom world-wide since World War II.

US Targets China’s Quest for ‘Military-Civil Fusion’ (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Bonnie Girard) A report indicates the U.S. government will seek to deny sales to 89 major Chinese companies with military links.

U.S. Tightens Visa Rules for Chinese Communist Party Members (2020-12-03)
(New York Times, By Paul Mozur and Raymond Zhong)The new rules could prove to be a first step in attempting to systematically track lower-level party members who visit the United States. People who attempt to conceal their party membership while applying for a visa could be exposing themselves to charges of visa fraud if later discovered.

US to Block Goods from Chinese Company over Rights Abuses (2020-12-03)
(Associated Press, By Ben Fox) The U.S. said Wednesday it would block imports from a major Chinese producer of cotton goods because of its reliance on workers detained as part of a crackdown on ethnic minorities in China’s northwest.

US Ends 5 Cultural Programs with China in Further Escalation (2020-12-05)
(Associated Press) The departing Trump administration has ended five cultural-exchange programs with China that it says were being used for Chinese propaganda and had no benefit to the United States.

Congressional Body Vows More Scrutiny of U.S. Investments in China (2020-12-01)
(Reuters, By David Brunnstrom) A bipartisan advisory body to the U.S. Congress on Tuesday vowed more scrutiny of U.S. investments in Chinese firms, warning both of risks to investors and that U.S. money could finance China’s militarization, posing a direct threat to the United States.
China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
China's Domestic Politics
The Party That Failed (2020-12-04)
(Foreign Affairs, By Cai Xia) A personality cult now surrounds Xi, who has tightened the party’s grip on ideology and eliminated what little space there was for political speech and civil society. People who haven’t lived in mainland China for the past eight years can hardly understand how brutal the regime has become, how many quiet tragedies it has authored. After speaking out against the system, I learned it was no longer safe for me to live in China. (Read in Chinese).

3 of Hong Kong’s Most Prominent Young Activists Receive Jail Sentences (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Jessie Lau) The sentencings of Joshua Wong, Agnes Chow, and Ivan Lam confirmed the fears of young Hong Kongers amid a growing number of arrests.

Is Hong Kong Heading Toward a Russian-Style Electoral System? (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Simon Shen) Beijing may explore allowing a limited, managed style of democracy – one that ensures a toothless opposition, in the style of Putin’s Russia.

China's Foreign Relations 
With RCEP Complete, China Eyes CPTPP (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Hemant Adlakha) Is President Xi Jinping’s statement desire to join the CPTPP a signal of reconciliation to the new Biden administration or a bid to advance China’s regional dominance?

Cutting Through the Hype on Asia’s New Trade Deal (2020-12-03)
(Foreign Policy, By Salvatore Babones) The RCEP truly is a China-style trade agreement: platitudinous and ineffective.

China Poised to Be First to Distribute Virus Vaccine in Latin America, U.S. Official Says (2020-12-02)
(New York Times, By Carol Rosenberg) China, already competing for influence in this hemisphere through a multibillion-dollar network of investment and infrastructure deals, is likely to beat the United States in its own backyard with vaccine diplomacy, according to the military’s top commander for Central and South America.

China Continues Its COVID-19 Diplomacy in the Pacific (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) China held a second “special meeting on COVID-19” with Pacific Island countries.

Australia Livid as Chinese Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Tweets Offensive Image (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Abhijnan Rej) Zhao Lijian’s tweet is likely to seriously aggravate tensions between the two countries.
Military Balance
Taiwan Denies Military Plane Flew too Close to PLA Aircraft (2020-11-30)
(CNA, By Matt Yu, Justin Su and Emerson Lim) Taiwan's Ministry of National Defense (MND) on Monday denied a news report that a Taiwanese interceptor had flown dangerously close to a Chinese military plane during a recent monitoring mission.

Taiwan Starts Production of First Domestically Made Submarines (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Nick Aspinwall) President Tsai Ing-wen called the submarine production crucial to Taiwan’s development of asymmetric warfare capabilities.

PLA Warplane Enters Taiwan's ADIZ for Fourth Consecutive Day (2020-12-01)
(CNA, By Matt Yu and Joseph Yeh) An Y-8 anti-submarine aircraft from the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) entered Taiwan's southwest air defense identification zone (ADIZ) Tuesday morning, marking the fourth straight day of such incursions, according to the Ministry of National Defense (MND).

Three Chinese Military Planes Enter Taiwan's ADIZ (2020-12-04)
(CNA, By Matt Yu and Ko Lin) Three Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) warplanes entered Taiwan's southwest air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Friday, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) said that day.

Two Chinese Military Planes Enter Taiwan's ADIZ (2020-12-05)
(CNA, By Chen Yun-yu and Chung Yu-chen) Two Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) warplanes entered Taiwan's southwest Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) on Saturday, the Ministry of National Defense (MND) said that day.
Regional Issues
‘Trump Is Better’: In Asia, Pro-Democracy Forces Worry About Biden (2020-11-30)
(New York Times, By Hannah Beech) It might seem counterintuitive that Asian defenders of democracy are among the most ardent supporters of Mr. Trump, who has declared his friendship with Xi Jinping of China and Kim Jong-un of North Korea. But it is precisely Mr. Trump’s willingness to flout diplomatic protocol, abandon international accords and keep his opponents off-balance that have earned him plaudits as a leader strong enough to stand up to dictators and defend democratic ideals overseas, even if he has been criticized as diminishing them at home.

Taiwan Backs Australian Wine Campaign in Stand Against China (2020-12-02)
(CNA, By Yeh Su-ping and Joseph Yeh) Taiwanese diplomats and officials are taking part in a global campaign to purchase Australian wines as the country stands against intense pressure from China, which has imposed heavy taxes on Australian wine as Sino-Australia tension has intensified.

NATO Huddles With Asia-Pacific Democracies to Talk China (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) On December 2, the foreign ministers of the NATO members, along with delegations from Australia, Japan, New Zealand, and South Korea, gathered virtually to discuss the rise of China and the implications for the global balance of power.

Trump, Biden, and the Obstacles to ASEAN Neutrality (2020-12-03)
(The Diplomat, By Laura Southgate) In an era of growing superpower competition, ASEAN will face stiff challenges to its autonomy and neutrality.

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Recent Publication Dan Blumenthal, "The China Nightmare: The Grand Ambitions of a Decaying State" (AEI Press) (Book Review)
Recent Publication Kerry Gershaneck, "Political Warfare: Strategies for Combating China’s Plan to 'Win Without Fighting" (Marine Corps University Press) (Book Review)
Recent Publication Mei-Fang Fan, Deliberative Democracy in Taiwan: A Deliberative Systems Perspective (Routledge)
Recent Publication John F. Copper, Taiwan's Politics in Action: Struggling to Win at the Ballot Box (World Scientific)
Recent Publication Kingsley Edney, Stanley Rosen, and Ying Zhu, Soft Power With Chinese Characteristics: China’s Campaign for Hearts and Minds (1st Edition) (Routledge) (Book Review)
Recent Publication Bonnie S. Glaser, Richard C. Bush, and Michael J. Green, Toward a Stronger U.S.-Taiwan Relationship (CSIS)
Recent Publication Gerald Chan, China’s Maritime Silk Road: Advancing Global Development? (Edward Elgar Publishing)
Recent Publication Kharis Templeman, Yun-han Chu, and Larry Diamond (eds.), Dynamics of Democracy in Taiwan: The Ma Ying-jeou Years (Lynne Rienner Publishers)
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 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)
TSR received a favorable review by the Foreign Affairs (July/Aug 2000)
The Best of Asia-Pacific Web Award
TSR was honored with a Four-Star rating by the Asian Studies WWW Virtual Library. 

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