::: TSR Weekly Report
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2021-09-04 | NO.45(36) epaper |
Note to Readers
TSR announces newly published books about Taiwan and East Asia on its website and in its weekly newsletter. If you're a scholar or your book will be published by an academic press, please send the title of your book and a link to the publisher's web site to TSR's Executive Editor, Dalton Lin (dalton.lin@inta.gatech.edu).  
Cross-Strait Relations
Global Scolding of China for Lithuania Retaliation (2021-08-29)
(Taipei Times/CNA) The heads of parliamentary foreign affairs committees in the US and 11 European countries issued a joint statement on Friday condemning China’s efforts to punish Lithuania for trying to deepen its ties with Taiwan.

Lithuania Recalls Beijing Ambassador Over China-Taiwan Spat
 (2021-09-03)
(Associated Press) Lithuania on Friday recalled its ambassador to China following the Baltic country’s decision in July to allow self-governing Taiwan to open an office in its capital under its own name.
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Taiwan's Foreign Relations 
Japan, Taiwan Lawmakers Discuss China Threat (2021-08-28)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) The interaction between legislators was intended as the equivalent of more formal “2+2” talks.

Has Japan’s Policy Toward the Taiwan Strait Changed? (2021-08-23)
(Washington Post, By Adam P. Liff) The recent statements, coupled with Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi’s June statement that “the peace and stability of Taiwan are directly connected to Japan” and the unprecedently detailed coverage of Taiwan and cross-Strait dynamics in Japan’s newly released defense white paper, make clear this will be an important space to watch.

Taiwan’s Foreign Minister: Time to Let Taiwan Work With the UN (2021-08-27)
(The Diplomat, By Jaushieh Joseph Wu) “There is no lack of compelling reasons for Taiwan to play a constructive role in the U.N. system,” writes Joseph Wu.

EU Group Advances Taiwan Proposal (2021-09-03)
(Taipei Times, By Wu Su-wei and Jonathan Chin) The European Parliament Committee on Foreign Affairs on Wednesday approved proposals that urge the EU to bolster political ties with Taiwan and rename its European Economic and Trade Office the “EU Office in Taiwan.”

The Somaliland Connection: Taiwan’s Return to Africa? (2021-09-02)
(The Diplomat, By Jean-Pierre Cabestan) Taiwan’s new representative office in Hargeisa not only gives Taipei another connection to the African continent, but also establishes a new model of relations that could be extended to other states.
U.S.-China Relations
In Afghan Withdrawal, a Biden Doctrine Surfaces (2021-09-04)
(New York Times, By Helene Cooper, Lara Jakes, Michael D. Shear and Michael Crowley) In the chaotic finale of America’s 20-year war in Afghanistan, a Biden Doctrine is emerging: a foreign policy that avoids the aggressive tactics of forever wars and nation building, while uniting allies against the authoritarianism of rising powers.

The American Empire in Retreat (2021-09-04)
(New York Times, By Ross Douthat) The American imperium can’t be toppled by the Taliban. But in our outer empire, in Western Europe and East Asia, perceived U.S. weakness could accelerate developments that genuinely do threaten the American system as it has existed since 1945 — from German-Russian entente to Japanese rearmament to a Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

Top China Diplomat Wang Yi Tells US Counterpart Anthony Blinken All Sides Must ‘Proactively Guide’ the Taliban (2021-08-30)
(SCMP, By Robert Delaney) In phone conversation, Wang says coordination between China and the US over Afghanistan would depend on Washington’s policies towards Beijing in other areas. He accuses US of ‘double standard’ in efforts to eradicate terrorism in Afghanistan. 

American Politics (2021-09-10)
(Taipei Forum, By John Hamre) On China policy, the two parties are in a rare consensus with their hostile attitude. But it is more rhetorical than action oriented. In Washington, for instance, many hope for stronger anti-China policy. But in New York, most desire a continuation of stable status quo. A lot of quiet consultation by the business and academia is going on without being noticed. Most people do not see China with great hostility. Trump indeed tried to decouple with China. But Biden’s administration is different. It is hostile mostly rhetorically.

Chinese Views of U.S. Decline (2021-09-01)
(China Leadership Monitor, By Michael D. Swaine) Chinese public statements on the decline offer no conclusive evidence supporting the claim that Beijing is basing its policies on the sure conviction that the U.S. is in an irreversible, structural decline benefiting China and that Beijing is therefore committed to a policy of taking advantage of this decline. A more nuanced understanding of Chinese discourse on U.S. decline and its implications for the United States is in order.

Climate Change Is ‘Not a Geostrategic Weapon,’ Kerry Tells Chinese Leaders (2021-09-01)
(New York Times, By Chris Buckley and Lisa Friedman) Escalating tensions between China and the United States have spilled into their talks over how to stop global warming from hitting catastrophic levels after Chinese officials warned the U.S. climate envoy, John Kerry, that political ill will could undermine cooperation.

China Is Laying Climate Traps for the United States (2021-09-02)
(Foreign Policy, By Gabriel B. Collins and Andrew S. Erickson) Kerry and his team face three major traps their Chinese counterparts keep striving to lay. The Biden administration—including Kerry himself—has explicitly promised not to make concessions to Beijing in return for climate cooperation. But despite that pledge, linkage remains a real trap. The CPP’s unrelenting pursuit of political leverage at home and abroad invariably overrides its concern for the climate.

U.S. Institutions Must Get Smarter About Chinese Communist Party Money (2021-08-31)
(Foreign Policy, By Joshua Eisenman and Michael Sobolik) Beijing is trying to shape the academic and political conversation.

Businesses Push Biden to Develop China Trade Policy (2021-09-01)
(New York Times, By Thomas Kaplan and Alan Rappeport) Businesses are lobbying heavily for the tariffs to be removed, which would make it easier for them to rely on factories in China instead of making investments in the United States or elsewhere. And they want assurances that they can do business with a financially important market.
China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
China's Domestic Politics
Seven Hong Kong Activists Sentenced for Taking Part in 2019 Anti-Government Protest (2021-09-01)
(VOA) Seven Hong Kong pro-democracy activists were sentenced Wednesday to lengthy jail sentences for taking part in an unauthorized protest in 2019.

Hong Kong Crackdown Continues With Canceled Concerts, Sentenced Activists (2021-09-02)
(The Diplomat, By Associated Press) Denise Ho’s sold-out concerts were canceled, feeding concerns that Hong Kong’s cultural scene is the latest target of China’s tightening control.

How China’s Worldview Took Over Hong Kong (2021-09-01)
(The Diplomat, By Simon Shen) “Repeat a lie often enough, and it becomes the truth.” This statement by the Nazi Joseph Goebbels captures the essence of how repeating a misrepresentation can fabricate an “illusion of truth,” a propaganda technique well understood by authoritarian regimes. The Soviet Union and Nazi Germany mastered it in their countries, but they had little success in exporting their propaganda to sway the opposite camps. Today, China poses a bigger threat than the two regimes did in their respective eras: In the age of big data, China’s population and resources give it a tremendous edge in our hyper-connected world.

China’s Hydropower Plan on the Brahmaputra (2021-09-01)
(The Diplomat, By Hongzhou Zhang and Genevieve Donnellon-May) Climate goals and local interests are driving Tibet’s hydropower boom, which will have implications far beyond China.


China's Foreign Relations 
Why Terrorists Will Target China in Pakistan (2021-08-27)
(Foreign Policy, By Abdul Basit and Raffaello Pantucci) As awareness of Uyghur persecution increases and anger about Beijing’s investment projects simmers, Chinese citizens and businesses are likely to suffer.

Chinese Special Envoy Winds Up Unannounced Myanmar Trip (2021-09-02)
(The Diplomat, By Sebastian Strangio) Sun Guoxiang’s surreptitious visit marks China’s full return to “business as usual” in Myanmar.

Chinese High-Speed Rail Network Reaches Myanmar’s Border (2021-09-01)
(The Diplomat, By Sebastian Strangio) The opening of the Chengdu-Lincang line will further mainland Southeast Asia’s historic reorientation toward the north.
Military Balance
Taiwan's Defense Ministry Submits NT$471.7 Billion Budget Proposal for 2022 (2021-08-31)
(CNA, By Matt Yu, Chen Chun-hua, and Ko Lin) The Ministry of National Defense (MND) on Tuesday submitted a budget proposal of NT$471.7 billion (US$17.05 billion) to the Legislature for arms purchases and other defense needs, including jet fighter precision guided missiles and long-endurance unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs).

Chinese Military Reconnaissance Plane Enters Taiwan’s ADIZ (2021-08-31)
(Taiwan News, By Eric Chang) A Chinese military plane entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ) on Monday morning (Aug. 30), marking the 14th intrusion this month.

Chinese Warship on 24-Hour Standby in Waters East of Taiwan: Sankei Shimbun (2021-08-31)
(Taiwan News, By Keoni Everington) Japanese media on Monday (Aug. 30) reported that a Chinese warship is being deployed 24-hours a day in the waters between Yonaguni Island and northeast Taiwan.

New China Carrier to Increase Threat (2021-09-01)
(Taipei Times, By Aaron Tu and Jake Chung) The area-denial capabilities of China’s People’s Liberation Army (PLA) against the US would improve with the delivery of a Type 003 aircraft carrier in 2025, according to the Ministry of National Defense’s 2021 People’s Liberation Army Capability Report. This year’s report has more assessments of the PLA’s ability to conduct landing operations on Taiwan, its area-denial capabilities and the efficacy of its gray-zone tactics.

Japan Ministry Seeks 2.6% Defense Hike Amid China Worries (2021-08-31)
(Associated Press, By Mari Yamaguchi) Japan’s Defense Ministry on Tuesday asked for a 2.6% increase over this year’s record budget as it seeks to further strengthen the country’s military in the face of China’s growing assertiveness in the region.

How Finding China’s Nuclear Sites Upset Pro-Beijing Trolls (2021-08-26)
(Foreign Policy, By Jeffrey Lewis) Pretending China isn’t expanding its nuclear forces doesn’t get us closer to finding a way to work together to reduce nuclear dangers. Whether I am right or wrong that China’s changing nuclear posture is at least, in part, a reaction to U.S. choices, we urgently need to find a way to revive arms control discussions between the United States and China.
Regional Issues
Australia, France Back Peace in Taiwan Strait (2021-09-01)
(Taipei Times, By Lin Chia-nan) A joint statement by Australia and France on Monday highlighted the importance of peace and stability across the Taiwan Strait, with the two nations agreeing on closer maritime cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, including “future joint transits.”

South China Sea: China Demands Foreign Vessels Report Before Entering ‘Its Territorial Waters’
 (2021-08-30)
(SCMP, By Amber Wang) Foreign vessels entering what Beijing deems its “territorial waters” must report to China under maritime regulations meant to strengthen its claims over disputed waters, including the South China Sea. 

The Quad Conducts Malabar Naval Exercise (2021-08-27)
(The Diplomat, By Rajeswari Pillai Rajagopalan) Australia is back for the second year in a row, underscoring the Quad’s deepening commitment to cooperation in the Indo-Pacific.

Why the Quad Needs to Improve Its Economic Game (2021-08-30)
(The Diplomat, By Mukesh Aghi) Trade, investment, and supply chain security need to be high on the agenda of the four-nation grouping.

Like It or Not, the South Korea-US Alliance Is Changing (2021-08-27)
(The Diplomat, By Sukjoon Yoon) The ROK-U.S. alliance is at a time of transition, and a lot of changes will be required to maintain the strength and effectiveness of the alliance into the future.

What Were the Main Outcomes of Kamala Harris’ Trip to Southeast Asia? (2021-08-27)
(The Diplomat, By Sebastian Strangio) The visit highlighted both the overlaps and the misalignments between the U.S. and Southeast Asian governments.

Playing Chess With China (2021-08-29)
(Foreign Policy, By Sumit Ganguly) A new book by a former Indian envoy to Beijing has important lessons for today’s policymakers.
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