Friday, January 30, 2015

Taiwan: Between the Pivot and a Hard Place

What role, if any, can Taiwan play in the U.S. rebalancing to Asia? And what can Taipei to do increase its chances of being given a role in the fledging regional alliance? 

More than three years have elapsed since then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton posited the idea of a U.S. “pivot,” or “rebalancing,” to Asia in her article for Foreign Policy magazine. To this day, nobody seems to have a clear idea how to define the nature and shape of the endeavor in either quantitative or qualitative terms. An even more difficult question is whether Taiwan could, or will, play a role in the pivot, and if so, what would be the extent of its involvement. 

Although several factors favour a role for Taiwan—its geographical location within the first island chain and a democratic political system, among them—integrating the island-nation into the pivot also involves risks and challenges that are unique to its situation. 

My article, published today on the China Policy Institute Blog at the University of Nottingham, continues here. (Photo by the author.)

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