Thu, Aug 18, 2011 - Page 3 News List

Ros-Lehtinen warns Biden on China

’EMBOLDENED ATTITUDE’:With China increasingly assertive in its own backyard, the US is struggling to balance its commitments to Taiwan with new geopolitical realities

By William Lowther  /  Staff Reporter in Washington

“Further, Mr Vice President, I urge the administration to expeditiously meet its legislatively-mandated obligations regarding reporting and consultation with Congress on Taiwan arms sales,” she said.

Dean Cheng (成斌), a research fellow at the Washington-based Heritage Foundation, issued a statement on Tuesday on Biden’s China trip and the Taiwanese reports that the US had decided not to sell the F-16C/Ds.

“Reports are now emerging that the administration has decided to reject the sale of F-16C/Ds to Taiwan in advance of the US vice president’s trip to China. Instead, as a sop, the administration has decided to go forward with upgrades of the F-16A/Bs currently in Taiwan’s air force,” he said.

“The refusal to sell F-16C/Ds while upgrading F-16A/Bs smacks of decisions made not for military reasons, but for political expediency,” Cheng wrote.

Cheng said that in all likelihood, Biden would find that far from appreciating — much less accepting — this “compromise,” Beijing would find it little more acceptable than if the administration “had done the right thing and made available to Taiwan the systems needed.”

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