Was U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi’s visit to Taiwan worth it? It depends on who you are talking to.
By now, you probably know that Pelosi stopped in Taiwan during her Asia tour. By now, you know China does not like it one bit.
Here’s the issue. China claims Taiwan as its territory. Taiwan wants to be free and independent.
Pelosi told Taiwan’s president that the United States stands with Taiwan. “America’s determination to preserve democracy here in Taiwan and around the world remains ironclad.”
She also met with human rights leaders and visited a human rights museum. As you well know, China has a terrible human rights record.
Speaker Pelosi has been a thorn in China’s side for a long time. Back when she was a young Congresswoman, she called out China on human rights. Even went there to protest the 1989 massacre in Tiananmen Square.
China is doing a lot of saber rattling over this. A lot of threats. One Chinese official tweeted this: “The U.S. must pay the price for its own mistake and we mean what we say!”
Tomorrow, China’s military is starting live fire exercises near Taiwan. The U.S. has moved warships into the area.
Michael Pillsbury from the Hudson Institute says this about the exercises: “That would go on for four days starting Thursday. Some of these zones appear to be inside Taiwan’s territorial waters. That opens the possibility for an accident of miscalculation.”
Needless to say, it’s going to be a tense couple of days.
So, should she have gone to Taiwan? Depends on who you ask. It’s really quite interesting to me who is supporting this. Republicans.
Some of Nancy Pelosi’s biggest political rivals are on board with this. South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham said this: “I’m glad she went. We can’t have China tell us where to go and what to do. So, the idea of her going to visit Taiwan is a good thing in my view.”
Interesting to note who is not on board. The White House. President Biden respects Pelosi’s decision to go, but it’s evident he would prefer she hadn’t gone.
Tom Friedman writes in an opinion piece in the New York Times that Pelosi’s stop in Taiwan is “utterly reckless, dangerous and irresponsible.”
Friedman says nothing good will come from it. He points to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. So far, the Chinese have stayed out of it. Siding with neither. There are no guarantees, however.
Nancy Pelosi has left Taiwan now. It will be awhile before we know if it did any good or if it did any damage. She did it though. Whatever you think of her politics, you have to admire her courage and convictions.