Unbalanced Deterrence: Coercive Threat, Reassurance and the US-China Rivalry in Taiwan Strait

  • Citation: Zuo Xiying (2019) Unbalanced deterrence: coercive threat, reassurance and the US-China rivalry in Taiwan strait, The Pacific Review
    • Topics:
    • IR Theories
    • Keywords:
    • Taiwan Strait
    • One-China policy
    • the current framework between China and US
    • 92 consensus
    • the United States

After Tsai Ing-wen was elected, both Mainland China and the United States realized that the situation in the Taiwan Strait has undergone fundamental changes. In order to curb Taiwan’s independence policy, the Mainland China has strengthened its coercive threats against Taiwan while the US chose to increase its strategic commitment to Taiwan and revisit the One-China policy. This article argues the current framework between China and US on Taiwan issue is collapsing. The rising of Mainland China is the root cause for this round tension, however, Tsai Ing-wen refused to accept the 92 consensus which was the trigger. This article elaborates the argument that the delicate balance in the Taiwan Strait is declining, which both China and the United Stated have increased their deterrent threats to each other while decreased their reassurances, and regional crisis is emerging. For the leaders of China and the United States, it is urgent to manage the emerging Taiwan Strait crisis and prevent the situation from going out of control.

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