On July 29, Foreign Policy published its biweekly “It’s Debatable” column featuring Scowcroft Center deputy director Matthew Kroenig and New American Engagement Initiative senior fellow Emma Ashford assessing the latest news in international affairs.
In their latest column, they debate Speaker Pelosi’s upcoming Taiwan trip, US strategic ambiguity towards China and Taiwan, and the future of Sino-US relations.
This dispute really crystalizes the stakes in the U.S.-China competition. The United States wants a “free and open” international system, where people are free and able to move and do business freely as they wish. And the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) wants a system in which it gets to arbitrarily decide what is and what is not permitted.
The big problem… is that the Pelosi visit really can’t be viewed in isolation from other things happening in U.S.-China policy. In addition to a broad and growing division between the two states, the Biden administration has left most of the Trump administration’s trade tariffs in place, and the president has repeatedly misstated his support for Taiwan in a way that suggests that he, at least, no longer backs strategic ambiguity on Taiwan.