Is Nancy Pelosi right to visit Taiwan?


Fact Box

  • On August 2, 2022, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi landed in Taiwan to commemorate “America’s unwavering commitment to supporting Taiwan’s vibrant democracy,” however, China asserted the move “seriously damages peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait.” 
  • White House national security spokesperson John Kirby stated the visit did not threaten the “one China” policy of the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, which establishes diplomacy between China under the expectation that relations with Taiwan will be “peaceful.” If threatened, the US will provide Taiwan with “defense articles and defense services” as necessary.  
  • During Pelosi’s visit, China’s military conducted military exercises around key ports and cities surrounding the island. Taiwan’s defense ministry identified 21 Chinese aircraft and “reinforced” their own defense as precaution.
  • Taiwan News via Radio Taiwan International found that 88.6% of Taiwanese support the government reaching out to other democracies to secure peace in the Taiwanese Strait.

Andrew (Yes)

Taiwan is a self-governing island democracy with the right to self-determine, just like any other nation, despite China insisting to the contrary. Further, Taiwan is closer aligned than China is with the United States regarding values such as support for same-sex marriage and social safety net issues, and Speaker Pelosi is right to visit to stand up for these values. This is especially true when we consider how China has been allowed to erode freedoms in Hong Kong. A visit from a high-ranking US official sends the message that the United States stands up for freedom and democracy worldwide, even in the face of aggressive threats

Ever since Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the world has kept a wary eye on China's aspirations for Taiwan. We have seen the devastation that happens when larger nations are allowed to bully their weaker neighbors, and it is important that Taiwan not be allowed to suffer the same fate of invasion and occupation that Ukraine is currently enduring. By visiting Taiwan, Speaker Pelosi is taking a proactive step to help avoid much suffering in Taiwan.

Likewise, Speaker Pelosi is visiting many other regional players, including Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, and Singapore; it only makes sense that she should visit Taiwan. This doesn't need to be a major crisis. China should use the opportunity to normalize relations with the Western world further, particularly ahead of Chinese leader Xi Jinping's upcoming calls with President Biden. It is normal for members of Congress to visit foreign nations such as Taiwan; what is abnormal is China's unnecessary response.

Elliot (No)

Nancy Pelosi is wrong to visit Taiwan. The United States seems intent on provoking yet another war – whether it’s a hot or cold conflict. We are already stretched thin with our proxy war in Ukraine, and the last thing we need is another ally that requires constant support and funding. Of course, this is theoretically exactly what the military industrial complex wants, but ultimately it is we the citizens who will pay the price. Let’s not forget the United States is currently printing billions of dollars in order to fund military aid to Ukraine. 

This move will also push Russia and China closer together. They have already formed strong partnerships in the face of the Ukraine conflict, and Pelosi’s provocation of China could truly set the stage for a new military alliance in the East – not unlike Japan and Germany during World War II. 

Related, Pelosi is not the most diplomatic person to send to Taiwan as she has a history of making ill-advised comments about China and has wasted no time in provoking them with a very aggressive statement after arriving in Taiwan. Additionally, she represents the most corrupt elements of the American government with her history of alleged insider trading

The United States cannot afford to fund another conflict. While the military industrial conflict will rake in the profits, the average citizen will pay for all this printed money in the form of inflation. We are already in the midst of a recession, and we need to focus on issues within our own borders. This will play out just like the pandemic where a select few corporations earn billions while the population slides into poverty.

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