Recognizing Taiwan as an independent country would be the most punitive measure the US could take against Beijing’s aggressiveness, US representative Michael McCaul, the ranking member of the US House Foreign Affairs Committee, said during an interview with Voice of America (VOA).
In a video published by VOA yesterday, McCaul, who is also chairman of the House’s China Task Force, discussed US foreign policy related to Taiwan, China and Hong Kong, as well as the accountability of Beijing and the WHO in the COVID-19 pandemic.
Pointing out that some experts have said that Beijing’s national security legislation in Hong Kong might serve as a blueprint for how it deals with Taiwan, VOA’s Lee Yi-hua (李逸華) asked if the US Congress, known to be supportive of Taiwan, would take additional steps on Taiwan and cross-strait security.
The US Congress has approved arms sales, including F-16 jets, to assist with Taiwan’s self-defense, McCaul said.
“In a 100-year marathon, [China’s] long-term goal is to take back Taiwan in the similar way they have just taken back Hong Kong,” he said, adding that China is also encroaching on the territory of island nations in the South Pacific.
“We can make it clear that we stand by Taiwan. We will not allow this to happen in Taiwan,” he said.
“I think the most punitive measure would be to recognize the legitimacy of Taiwan as an independent country. That would be a fundamental step in the right direction,” he said.
“That would be a very grave foreign policy decision to make,” he added.
McCaul did not directly answer a question about whether it is the right time for the US to review its “one China” policy, but said it is time to look at Taiwan’s exclusion from the WHO.
Taiwan should at least be an observer in the organization, and it had issued a warning that COVID-19 could be transmitted among humans, but WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus disregarded warnings from Taiwan and other experts, he said.
The COVID-19 pandemic has a silver lining and it is a wake-up call for the world, he said.
Many countries want to pull their supply chains out of the control of the Chinese Community Party (CCP), as they know even if there is short-term gain, there is long-term pain, as China could steal their technology, he said.
The US has to be more competitive with China on issues related to technology, such as 5G and Huawei Technologies Co, he said.
It should also deal with Beijing’s Belt and Road Initiative, while working with developing countries to deal with China’s debt traps, he added.
The US does not want to go to war with China, but it has to compete with it, he said.
The US should stand up for human rights, as well as freedom-loving democracies, while its long-term goal is to prevent a Chinese dictatorship from dominating the world for the century to come, McCaul said.
McCaul urged Chinese to see that the CCP government’s suppressive nature does not serve their best interests and is destroying their historical culture.
Communism in China would ultimately fail, just as in the Soviet Union and other countries, he said, adding that the CCP’s demise should be accelerated so that Chinese could embrace democracy.
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