Tsai's shameless opportunism will be brought to an end
Updated 18:19, 28-Oct-2021
First Voice

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In an interview with CNN on Wednesday, Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) leader Tsai Ing-wen confirmed U.S. troops are present in the Taiwan region, saying she had "faith" in America's willingness to defend the island.

It comes amid a tidal wave of provocations that separatists are using to push the agenda of so-called Taiwan independence. This included trips to Central and Eastern Europe, as well as bids to meet members of the European Parliament. They are making all-guns-blazing efforts to challenge the bottom line of the Chinese mainland.

The separatists are pursuing a strategy of "provocation diplomacy" – a tactic designed to garnish as much sympathy as possible from the West, provoking a reaction from the mainland and then subsequently playing the victim.

It is a tactic also used in the attempt to undermine China's wider relationships with various countries by urging them to push against their commitment to the one-China principle. In doing so, the DPP aims to create more political space for its cause, hoping every time when it moves the needle, the U.S. will support it and prevent the mainland from fighting back.

However, Tsai's shameless and reprehensible opportunism will soon be brought firmly to an end and those instigating Taiwan separatism will pay a price.

China is willing to do whatever it takes to defend its national sovereignty and territorial integrity, with the goal of an inevitable and irreversible reunification between Taiwan and the mainland. It is prepared to undergo costs to do so. This goal is non-negotiable, and China's bottom line is not bluff to be ignored or dismissed.

Taipei 101 dominates the city skyline in Taipei, Taiwan, southeast China. /Getty

Taipei 101 dominates the city skyline in Taipei, Taiwan, southeast China. /Getty

The DPP is miscalculating in its assumption that the United States truly has the political will to "save" Taiwan and risk a devastating conflict in doing so. Washington does not.

"The U.S. has developed a pretty nasty habit of inciting its friends and partners to take risky and even reckless decisions and of letting these friends and partners down," Russian International Affairs Council scholar Andrey Kortunov once wrote in the Global Times. In other words, the U.S. is adept at weaponizing partners in regional conflicts, only to abandon them later on countless occasions.

The United States cannot change the course of China's reunification, even if it is prepared to go all out in favor of the separatists.

But will the U.S. risk such a devastating conflict in the worst-case scenario? It remains unlikely. "This is clear to politicians not only in East Asia, but all over the place, including Moscow," Kortunov argued.

On such a premise, Tsai is making a grave miscalculation that this public posturing and "provocation diplomacy" can readily change Taiwan's fate. It cannot, and it will not.

The Hong Kong rioters sought similar tactics in 2019. Many of the scenes were similar – crying out for Western support, meeting senior politicians, being amplified by mainstream media and engaging in coordinated social media trolling. You might want to ask, where are they now?

China's political resolve to reunify is unwavering. The separatist leaders on the island will be better off accepting this reality than pursuing a path of reckless adventurism.

There is no road ahead for the DPP. The more the DPP attempts to undermine the one-China principle and refuses to compromise, the worse it will become and the more the mainland will utilize every aspect of its national power in order to bring the separatist pipedream to an end.

It is time for Taiwan to accept its destiny and rejoice in the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. It is not a question of "if;" It is a question of "when" and "how."

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