Taiwan report touts self-importance to embolden secessionists as US pawns
Published: Mar 10, 2022 11:26 PM
Taiwan Photo: Unsplash

Taiwan Photo: Unsplash

As the media and politicians hype that the Ukraine story "may become that of tomorrow's Taiwan," the island's external affairs department claimed in a report Thursday that the Chinese mainland will pay a "painful price" if it takes "military actions" against Taiwan. Experts said that although the Taiwan question, which is China's internal affair, and the Ukraine crisis are different in nature, Taiwan secessionists should know that it is nothing but a US pawn to be discarded at any time.

The report, which is about the Ukraine crisis and its connection with the situation around the Taiwan Straits, said the mainland intends to use the Ukraine crisis to put pressure on Taiwan in economic affairs, the military and public opinion. 

On Wednesday, a Chinese military spokesperson said at the annual session of the National People's Congress that the People's Liberation Army (PLA) will not tolerate any Taiwan secessionists' move or interference by external forces, and will respond every time they emerge.

The report said the island has stepped up monitoring and early warning of military developments around the Taiwan Straits, but no unusual troop movements by the mainland had been detected.

Commenting on the report, the head of the defense authority of Taiwan Chiu Kuo-cheng said that "no one wants to fight, and we must consider carefully before that… Once we fight, the costs for both sides will be very heavy."

"Ukraine today, Taiwan tomorrow" is in fact a warning to Taiwan, Wang Jianmin, a senior cross-Straits expert at Minnan Normal University, told the Global Times on Thursday. 

China's State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Monday stressed that the Taiwan question differs in nature from the Ukraine issue and the two are not comparable at all, as the Taiwan question is entirely China's internal affair. 

"Although the Taiwan question is fundamentally different from the Ukraine crisis, both have a high degree of US interference, which is the root cause of the problems … and they both illustrate a point that war is inevitable if they cross the red line," Wang said.

Given that the US has always been obfuscating over its military presence if a war would start in the Taiwan Straits, the report soothes itself that "Taiwan has a more important strategic location with a natural barrier of the Taiwan Straits. Taiwan's economic strength also has great influence, as the semiconductor industry of the region occupies a key position in the global supply chain."

Taiwan has overestimated its influence and position, Wang said. "The strategic positions of Ukraine and China's Taiwan are equally important to the US, and now the US has abandoned Ukraine."

"Taiwan needs to realize that if a war breaks out across the Taiwan Straits, the cost would be worth it to the mainland because national sovereignty is the paramount consideration… And the cost is one that mainland's strong economy can afford," Wang said.