Wed, Mar 23, 2016 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan experts on list of Clinton advisers: report

‘ABIDING INTEREST’:The list names former assistant secretary of state for East Asia Kurt Campbell, Joseph Nye, Bonnie Glaser, Evan Medeiros and Jeffrey Bader

By William Lowther  /  Staff reporter in Washington

A list of US Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton’s top advisers on Asia — containing the names of several experts on Taiwan-US relations — has been leaked to the media.

Such lists are normally confidential at this point in an election campaign.

The list of about 50 names was published this week by the well-respected newsletter The Nelson Report.

It revealed that Center for a New American Security senior fellow Mira Rapp-Hooper has been appointed coordinator of the “Hillary for America Asia Policy Working Group.”

The group is chaired by former US assistant secretary of state for East Asia Kurt Campbell and Harvard academic and political scientist Joseph Nye.

Among the members of the group with direct Taiwan experience — as listed by the Nelson Report — are Center for Strategic and International Studies senior adviser for Asia Bonnie Glaser, and two former directors for Asian affairs at the National Security Council — Evan Medeiros and Jeffrey Bader.

The group is continuing to grow and more experts are expected to join it over the next few months.

Former US secretary of state Clinton is heavily favored to win the Democratic presidential nomination.

There is speculation that Campbell will be given a senior foreign policy job if Clinton wins the general election in November.

In congressional testimony, Campbell has said that it was critical to build comprehensive, durable and unofficial relations with Taiwan and that the bedrock of that friendship was the security relationship.

He has called the Taiwan Relations Act one of the most important acts of “legislative leadership” and foreign policy in US history.

Nye has urged Taiwan to follow smart strategies that combine both hard and soft power.

He has said Taiwan must have sufficient military strength, but that ultimate protection lies in relations with the US, which depend on Taiwan’s soft power.

Nye said the US will never sell out Taiwan for something it wants from China as long as Taiwan stands for democracy and human rights.

Rapp-Hooper has praised Taiwan, saying: “The surprisingly successful history of the US-Taiwan policy is a diplomatic story as much as anything else, and a testament to how deliberate, cautious ambiguity can bring balance to seemingly irreconcilable political forces.”

There have been reports that Medeiros was behind the White House decision several years ago to deny sales of US F-16 warplanes to Taiwan.

Now serving as head of Euroasia Group’s research on Asia, Medeiros is said to have been a key architect of US President Barack Obama’s Asian “rebalance” strategy.

Bader has said that the US would “not even consider” abandoning Taiwan and that Taiwan’s security influenced the stability of the region and served as a balancing power vis-a-vis Japan and China.

Glaser was in Taipei earlier this month for high-level talks.

“Regardless of which political party is in power in Taiwan, the US has a deep and abiding interest in the preservation of Taiwan’s security and democracy,” she recently testified before the US Congress.

“The US can and should do more to advocate for Taiwan’s increased participation in international organizations, especially those that would enhance the safety and welfare of Taiwan’s citizens as well as regional and global security,” Glaser said.

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