::: TSR Weekly Report
2021-03-27 | NO.45(13) epaper |
Recent Publication
Lowell Dittmer, China's Political Economy in the Xi Jinping Epoch: Domestic and Global Dimensions (World Scientific) 
U.S.-Taiwan Relations
U.S. Bill Proposed to Add Taiwan to 'NATO Plus' Group of States (2021-03-23)
(CNA, By Matthew Mazzetta) U.S. Representative Scott Perry has proposed a bill in Congress to include Taiwan in the NATO plus five countries. The proposed legislation, named the "Taiwan PLUS Act," was introduced in the House of Representatives on March 19 and has since been referred to the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Voice of America's Chinese-language service reported on Tuesday.

U.S. House Committee Approves Bill to Back Taiwan's WHO Bid (2021-03-26)
(CNA, By Stacy Hsu and Elizabeth Hsu) The Foreign Affairs Committee in the United States House of Representatives on Thursday approved a bipartisan bill that seeks to mandate U.S. assistance to Taiwan in its bid to regain observer status in the World Health Organization (WHO).

Taiwan, US Sign Coast Guard MOU (2021-03-27)
(Taipei Times, By Lin Chia-nan) Taiwan and the US on Thursday signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to establish a coast guard working group, the first official document inked by the two nations since US President Joe Biden took office in January.

China Denounces US-Taiwan Coast Guard Cooperation Agreement (2021-03-26)
(Associated Press) China on Friday denounced an agreement between the U.S. and Taiwanese coast guards that underscores growing ties between Washington and the self-governing island democracy. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said the pact violated U.S. commitments to China and called on the U.S. to “be cautious with its words and actions on Taiwan-related issues."

U.S. Lawmakers Reintroduce Taiwan Relations Reinforcement Act (2021-03-27)
(CNA, By Stacy Hsu and Ko Lin) Two United States bipartisan lawmakers on Friday reintroduced the Taiwan Relations Reinforcement Act, which according to them, seeks to update U.S. policy toward Taiwan to better reflect U.S. values and the realities on the ground.
Taiwan's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
Taiwan's Domestic Politics
KMT Policy Forum Exchanges Views Ahead of Party Chairman Election (2021-03-28)
(CNA, By Liu Kuan-ting, Teng Pei-ju) Maintaining cross-strait peace remains the ultimate goal of the Kuomintang (KMT), said former New Taipei City Mayor Eric Chu (朱立倫) and media personality Jaw Shaw-kong (趙少康) during a forum in Taipei Saturday.

Taiwan's Foreign Relations 
Palau President Rejects Beijing, Reaffirms Ties with Taiwan (2021-03-22)
(CNA, By Elaine Hou and Emerson Lim) Palau President Surangel Whipps Jr., who is scheduled to visit Taiwan next week, told CNA on Monday that he has informed Beijing that Palau cherishes its relations with Taiwan and that no one should ask Palau to cut ties with Taipei.

Taiwan to Help Allies Buy Vaccines, But Not from China (2021-03-24)
(Reuters) Taiwan will help its handful of remaining diplomatic allies buy COVID-19 vaccines but on the condition that Taiwanese money is not used to obtain Chinese vaccines, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said on Wednesday.

Taiwan Joins WHO Regional Meeting, Pledges US$250,000 to Fight Ebola (2021-03-27)
(CNA, By Emerson Lim) Taiwan participated in a high-level meeting co-organized by the United States and regional offices of the World Health Organization (WHO) in Africa on Friday (U.S. time), and pledged US$250,000 to combat the resurgence of Ebola in Africa.

Lithuania Amending Laws to Pave Way for Taiwan Trade Office: Report (2021-03-25)
(CNA, By Lin Yu-li and Emerson Lim) The Lithuanian government has proposed an amendment to its Law on Civil Service to pave the way for opening a trade office in Taiwan, according to a report by the Baltic News Service (BNS), a news agency based in Tallinn, Estonia.
U.S.-China Relations
There Will Not Be a New Cold War: The Limits of U.S.-Chinese Competition (2021-03-24)
(Foreign Affairs, By Thomas J. Christensen) Although China’s rise carries real challenges for the United States, its allies, and its partners, the threat should not be misconstrued. The voices calling for a cold war containment strategy toward China misunderstand the nature of the China challenge and therefore prescribe responses that will only weaken the United States.

That Was Fast: Blowups With China and Russia in Biden’s First 60 Days (2021-03-20)
(New York Times, By David E. Sanger) It may look like the bad old days of the Cold War, but today’s bitter superpower competition is about technology, cyberconflict and influence operations.

Biden Defines His Underlying Challenge With China: ‘Prove Democracy Works’
(New York Times, By David E. Sanger) Among the biggest tasks of his presidency, Mr. Biden seemed to be arguing, is to prove anew to a skeptical world that both American democracy and its model of democratic capitalism still works — and that it is superior to the very different system Mr. Xi is ruthlessly enforcing at home as he tries to extend China’s influence around the world.

Why Washington Is Fed Up With Beijing (2021-03-24)
(Foreign Policy, By Michael Hirsh) Decades of failed efforts to woo China explain the Biden administration’s tough talk ahead of Alaska meeting.

China Doesn’t Respect Us Anymore — for Good Reason
(New York Times, By Thomas L. Friedman) For many of our political leaders, governing has become sports, entertainment or just mindless tribal warfare. No wonder China’s leaders see us as a nation in imperial decline, living off the leftover fumes of American “exceptionalism.” I wish I could say they were all wrong.

Do the Anchorage Talks Represent a New Normal for US-China Relations? (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Shannon Tiezzi) The fiery stance from China’s diplomats signals they are willing to return perceived disrespect with more disrespect.

Even Climate Change Is a Fraught Area for US-China Cooperation
(The Diplomat, By Deborah Lehr) Climate change is deeply intertwined with the technology competition that now bedevils U.S.-China relations.
China's Domestic Politics and Foreign Relations
China's Domestic Politics
Why Are China’s Consumers Threatening to Boycott H&M and Other Brands? (2021-03-25)
(New York Times, By Sui-Lee Wee and Keith Bradsher) Western brands are suddenly feeling the wrath of the Chinese consumer, the very shoppers who for years have clamored for their products and paid them vast amounts of money. Egged on by the ruling Communist Party, Chinese online activists are punishing foreign companies that have joined a call to avoid using cotton produced in the Chinese region of Xinjiang, where the authorities are waging a broad campaign of repression against ethnic minorities.

China Returns Eight Jailed HK Activists
(Taipei Times/AFP) Eight Hong Kongers who were part of a group of democracy activists who failed to flee the territory by speedboat last year were yesterday handed back to authorities after serving jail sentences in Shenzhen, China.

China's Foreign Relations 
U.S. Joins Allies to Punish Chinese (2021-03-22)
(New York Times, By Pranshu Verma) The U.S. move came hours after the European Union, United Kingdom and Canada levied their own sanctions against Chinese officials and entities for human rights violations in Xinjiang. The European Union targeted four Chinese officials, along with the Xinjiang Public Security Bureau. The United Kingdom and Canada did the same.

China Sanctions UK Entities, Individuals Over Xinjiang 'Lies' (2021-03-25)
(Reuters) China sanctioned organisations and individuals in the United Kingdom on Friday over what it called “lies and disinformation” about Xinjiang, days after Britain imposed sanctions for human rights abuses in the western Chinese region.

China Sanctions US, Canadian Officials Over Xinjiang (2021-03-27)
(Associated Press) China on Saturday announced new sanctions against U.S. and Canadian officials in a growing political and economic feud over its policies in the traditionally Muslim region of Xinjiang.

Second Canadian Is Tried in China on Spying Charges (2021-03-22)
(New York Times, By Javier C. Hernández) Canadian-Chinese tensions worsened Monday as China put a former Canadian diplomat on trial on spying charges, the second such trial in recent days, while Canada sanctioned four Chinese officials and one state entity for human-rights violations against the Uyghur minority.

Xi, Kim Share Messages Reaffirming China-N. Korea Alliance
(Associated Press, By Kim Tong-Hyung) The leaders of China and North Korea are reaffirming their traditional alliance following contentious talks between top diplomats from Washington and Beijing and diplomatic isolation and economic problems in the North that have left it ever-more dependent on the Chinese.

China and Russia Show Solidarity at Meeting of Foreign Ministers (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Eleanor Albert) The two sides, both under increasing Western pressure, expressed strong opposition to outside “interference.”

Iran and China Sign 25-Year Cooperation Agreement (2021-03-27)
(Reuters) China and Iran, both subject to U.S. sanctions, signed a 25-year cooperation agreement on Saturday to strengthen their long-standing economic and political alliance.

The Belt and Road in Italy: 2 Years Later (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Francesca Ghiretti) Two years after the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding, where does the BRI stand in Italy?

Serbia Hails Chinese Companies as Saviors, but Locals Chafe at Costs (2021-03-27)
(New York Times, By Andrew Higgins) While the government is welcoming Chinese investors to save moribund businesses and bring much-needed capital, many Serbians are complaining of environmental and political impacts.
Military Balance
Upgrade of 42 F-16 Jets Complete, Air Force Says (2021-03-22)
(Taipei Times with CNA) Taiwan has upgraded 42 of its 141 F-16A/B jets to the F-16V variant, which can “detect enemies earlier and have a longer striking range,” air force Chief of Staff Huang Chih-wei (黃志偉) said on Wednesday.

Taiwan Says Has Begun Mass Production of Long-Range Missile (2021-03-25)
(Reuters, By Ben Blanchard) Taiwan has begun mass production of a long-range missile and is developing three other models, a senior official said on Thursday, in a rare admission of efforts to develop strike capacity amid growing Chinese pressure.

Taiwan Reports Largest Ever Incursion by Chinese Air Force (2021-03-26)
(Reuters) Twenty Chinese military aircraft entered Taiwan’s air defence identification zone on Friday, in the largest incursion yet reported by the island’s defence ministry and marking a dramatic escalation of tension across the Taiwan Strait.

Potential Military Implications of Pingtan Island’s New Transportation Infrastructure (2021-03-26)
(China Brief, By Kristian McGuire) Within the last decade, Pingtan Island, which is the nearest territory to the Republic of China controlled by the People’s Republic of China, has transformed from a relative backwater into a significant transportation hub.

Rumors of War in the Taiwan Strait
(The Diplomat, By Denny Roy) Prospects of an imminent Chinese invasion are overblown – but that doesn’t mean Taiwan can be complacent.
Regional Issues
Philippines Says 220 Chinese Boats Have Encroached in South China Sea (2021-03-21)
(Reuters) The Philippines urged China on Sunday to recall more than 200 Chinese boats it said had been spotted at a reef in the South China Sea, saying the presence of the vessels violated its maritime rights as it claims ownership of the area.

US Backs Philippines in Standoff Over South China Sea Reef (2021-03-23)
(Associated Press, By Jim Gomez) The United States said Tuesday it’s backing the Philippines in a new standoff with Beijing in the disputed South China Sea, where Manila has asked a Chinese fishing flotilla to leave a reef. China ignored the call, insisting it owns the offshore territory.

China’s Secretive Maritime Militia May Be Gathering at Whitsun Reef (2021-03-24)
(Foreign Policy, By Andrew S. Erickson) Boats designed to overwhelm civilian foes can be turned into shields in real conflict.

Philippines Deploys More Patrol Ships Amid Rift with China (2021-03-25)
(Associated Press, By Jim Gomez) The Philippine military has ordered more navy ships to be deployed for “sovereignty patrols” in the South China Sea, where a Chinese flotilla has swarmed around a disputed reef and ignored Manila’s demand to leave the area.

China’s Neighbors Are Stronger Than We Think
(Foreign Policy, By Salvatore Babones) All across the Indo-Pacific arc, countries are beefing up their defenses.

US Defense Secretary Arrives in India as Biden Confronts Free and Open Dilemma (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Abhijnan Rej) On March 17, a powerful U.S. senator had asked Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin to raise difficult questions with his Indian hosts.

The Huawei Factor in US-India Relations (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Arindrajit Basu and Justin Sherman) U.S. and Indian decisions about Huawei have implications not just for their separate relations with China, but the U.S.-India bilateral as well.

India-Pakistan Ceasefire Details Emerge — Along With Possibility of Joint Military Exercises
(The Diplomat, By Abhijnan Rej) New Delhi seems to be keenly interested in providing details about the February 25 ceasefire. Though, if past is precedent, what actually transpired is anybody’s guess.

Myanmar Coup: Aung San Suu Kyi’s Trial Postponed to April 1, as 600 Detainees Freed (2021-03-24)
(SCMP with Reuters) A court hearing for Myanmar’s ousted leader Aung San Suu Kyi has been postponed until April 1, an aide to her lawyer said on Wednesday, marking the second successive postponement in her case as 600 other detainees were freed.

Indonesia, Malaysia Call for Urgent ASEAN Summit on Myanmar (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Sebastian Strangio) The call signifies an awareness among some ASEAN nations that the bloc needs to take the lead on efforts to resolve the Myanmar crisis.

Is the Quad’s Revival a Threat to ASEAN? (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Rifki Dermawan) The reemergence of the Quad grouping is bound to raise questions about ASEAN’s relevance and centrality.

The South Korea-US 2+2 Talks: Who Came Out Ahead? (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By Sukjoon Yoon) While the two sides were careful to avoid open disagreement, there are clear areas of tensions, from approaches to China and North Korea to alliance issues involving Japan.

North Korea Missile Launch Tests Biden, Alarms Japan Ahead of Olympics (2021-03-24)
(Reuters, By Josh Smith and Antoni Slodkowski) North Korea launched two suspected ballistic missiles into the sea near Japan on Thursday, underscoring steady progress in its weapons programme and ramping up pressure on the new U.S. administration as it reviews North Korea policy.

Making Sense of Europe’s Military Engagement in Asia (2021-03-24)
(The Diplomat, By TSURUOKA Michito) A new direction and Tokyo’s challenges.

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Recent Publication Kenneth W. Allen and Cristina L. Garafola, 70 Years of the PLA Air Force (China Aerospace Studies Institute)
Recent Publication Mariah Thornton, Robert Ash, and Dafydd Fell, Taiwan's Economic and Diplomatic Challenges and Opportunities (Routledge)
Recent Publication Richard C. Bush, Difficult Choices: Taiwan's Quest for Security and the Good Life (Brookings Institution Press)
Recent Publication Lowell Dittmer, China's Political Economy in the Xi Jinping Epoch: Domestic and Global Dimensions (World Scientific)
Recent Publication Dafydd Fell, Taiwan's Green Parties: Alternative Politics in Taiwan (Routledge)
Recent Publication Lawrence C. Reardon, A Third Way: The Origins of China's Current Economic Development Strategy (Harvard University Press)
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Recent Publication Kerry Gershaneck, Political Warfare: Strategies for Combating China’s Plan to 'Win Without Fighting (Marine Corps University Press) (Book Review)
Recent Publication Mei-Fang Fan, Deliberative Democracy in Taiwan: A Deliberative Systems Perspective (Routledge)
Recent Publication John F. Copper, Taiwan's Politics in Action: Struggling to Win at the Ballot Box (World Scientific)
Recent Publication Kingsley Edney, Stanley Rosen, and Ying Zhu, Soft Power With Chinese Characteristics: China’s Campaign for Hearts and Minds (1st Edition) (Routledge) (Book Review)
TSR received a favorable review by the Foreign Affairs (July/Aug 2000)
The Best of Asia-Pacific Web Award
TSR was honored with a Four-Star rating by the Asian Studies WWW Virtual Library. 

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