Director of the Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution Richard Bush said that the current momentum in cross-strait relations would slow, and that progress on political and security talks was unlikely in Ma’s second term.
He said that in private, Chinese officials agreed that they needed to be patient.
However, he said, others within China wanted results and it was possible that China would give up on a gradualist approach.
“It really is a worrisome situation that Taiwan and the US needs to be concerned about,” he said.
Another former director of the AIT and panel moderator Douglas Paal stressed that US deterrence had to be maintained and that Washington should try to “shape the character of China’s future thoughts about unification.”