The Fourth Taiwan Strait Crisis

Date: 14 August 2022

Author: Michael C.

Tags: Asia-Pacific, Internationalism

On December 7, 1949, a little over one month following Chairman Mao Zedong’s proclamation of the founding of the People’s Republic of China from Tiananmen square in Beijing, General Chiang Kai Shek — leader of the defeated Chinese Nationalist Party and the so called Republic of China — officially announced his forces’ retreat from mainland China to a new base: the island of Taiwan. Over the course of four months, around a million soldiers and their families would make the journey. At the time, the island, which had only recently been turned back over to China from the defeated empire of Japan, had a population of around six million. Nationalist forces hoped that, in time, they could regroup and then retake mainland China. Under General Chiang, the island was put under martial law, and the Republic of China, recognized by only thirteen member-States of the United Nations today, lives on. Technically. Sort of. It’s complicated.

Taiwan has been recognized as Chinese territory since the 17th century, when Zheng Chenggong (Koxinga) seized control of southern Taiwan in 1661 with the intention of using it as a base to re-establish the Ming Dynasty following its defeat at the hands of the advancing Qing. Chinese migration and settlement in the region is recorded as early as the 13th century, with indigenous settlement dating back to around the 4th millennium BC from what is today southeastern mainland China. In effect, although it has been occupied repeatedly throughout its history — the Japanese Empire even attempted to “Japanize” (“皇民化运动”) the island and its people — Taiwan has always shared a common destiny with the mainland; Chiang Kai Shek’s retreat in 1949 appears tantamount to little more than a retelling of Zheng Chenggong’s in 1661. However, it is as Karl Marx said: first as tragedy, then as farce. Today, with the oft-imagined collapse of the People’s Republic of China not materializing, the cannibalistic forces of settler imperialism have begun to roost, and the island, and her people, are once again being caught in a tug-of-war between imperialist foreigners and mainland compatriots. The United States continues to inflame tensions and stoke separatists, while the mainland, having experienced the theft of Taiwan more than once throughout history, maintains that reunification is inevitable. 

As the People’s Liberation Army promises more drills to come, and the process of reunifying Taiwan with the mainland accelerates, it is necessary to assess both the present developments, as well as those of the past. The antecedents to the current situation, even more so than just Chiang Kai Shek’s 1949 retreat, were the  crises in the Taiwan Strait — the body of water spanning some 86 nautical miles wide at its narrowest point between the island of Taiwan and the shores of Fujian Province. In 1954, 1958, and 1995, the first, second, and third so-called Taiwan Strait Crises occurred. In each instance, the meddling of the United States and flagrant violation of the One China principle would necessitate the usage of bullets, artillery, and missiles. 

On the 9th of January, 2021, a mere 11 days prior to Joe Biden being sworn in as President of the United States, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the United States would be lifting “self-imposed” restrictions on its relationship with Taiwan. This tension served as the springboard from which the Biden administration would begin antagonizing cross-strait relations, whereby both sides have maintained a fragile adherence to the One China Principle. Under this Principle, both the Republic of China (ROC, Taiwan) and People’s Republic of China (mainland China) agree that there is only one China, and that both the mainland and Taiwan are part of it. Their disagreement, stemming from the civil war, being over who the rightful governing authority over all of China is. It is therefore a purely internal Chinese affair. On June 10th, 2022, however, amid escalations and accusations by the United States that China was committing aggression by holding routine drills within its own territory, Chinese Minister of Defense Wei Fenghe publicly warned, "if anyone dares to split Taiwan from China, the Chinese army will definitely not hesitate to start a war no matter the cost."

Provocations, insults, and threats to the status quo of cross-strait relations continued mounting through 2022, and then House Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced she would be visiting the island as part of her tour of Asia. The response from the Chinese side was immediate and furious. The United States momentarily backed down and Pelosi’s trip was postponed. Then, in late September, the Speaker published the itinerary for her trip which contained no mention of Taiwan. As the Chinese had repeatedly warned that such a visit would be a flagrant violation of Chinese territorial sovereignty, and would necessitate a firm response, it seemed that cooler heads had prevailed. Reports indicated that the military, and even President Joe Biden himself had quietly dissuaded Pelosi from visiting the island.

And then she showed up anyway. 

On the evening of August 2nd, aboard a US Air Force aircraft, escorted by a group of US jet fighters scrambled from Okinawa, Nancy Pelosi crossed the red line into Chinese airspace. Millions of onlookers held their breath as we awaited the Chinese response. Many believed that war was a real possibility, some feared her plane would even be shot down; everyone agreed, the status quo had been shattered. Despite numerous warnings and attempts to dissuade the United States from its open and reckless disregard for international norms and stability, no common sense or appeals to decency could stop the imperialist west from doing what it has done since the dawn of the modern era: gunboat diplomacy. 

Pelosi and her delegation, which included her son (whom is not a government official, but does have noteworthy economic interests in the island), as well as a gaggle of other members of the US House of Representatives, landed late at night in Taipei, away from the crowds that would begin rallying to protest at daybreak. 

The Congressmen and women accompanying Nancy Pelosi on her illegal tour were:

Who she met once there is also very noteworthy. Tsai Ing-wen, current “President” of the self-proclaimed Republic of China, is an outspoken separatist who believes that Taiwan, in spite of all of the history noted above, should be an independent country — that it is neither the Republic nor the People’s Republic; that despite history, language, and culture, Taiwan is somehow not Chinese at all. Pelosi’s delegation also met with the founder and President of Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), as well as the Chairman of Pegatron; private corporations with whom the United States government has a vested interest, and Pelosi herself has personal, economic interests. Other figures the Pelosi delegation met with included Hong Kong, Tibet, and more Taiwan separatist activists, as well as State Department asset and failed politician, Örkesh Dölet. Also known as Wu'erkaixi, Örkesh Dölet is most well known for his involvement as a “student leader” in the US-backed Tiananmen square riot in 1989; an attempted color revolution against the government of the People’s Republic of China. Dölet would become semi-infamous for claiming he was present in the square on the morning People’s Liberation Army soldiers arrived, and that he witnessed the murder two hundred students. Later investigations proved that Dölet was not present at the square at the time he claimed, and that not a single student was killed in the square. He, along with many other US assets involved in the riots, would evade justice by fleeing to Taiwan and Hong Kong through a joint-operation between British MI6 and American CIA, code named Operation Yellowbird. From there, he was sent to study at Harvard. Dölet is a prime example of who exactly Nancy and her delegation were meeting with, and what forces the United States is supporting in the region.

The Chinese response to this horrendous violation of its sovereignty and territorial integrity was swift, but measured. Targeted bans were put into place against specific sectors and entities known for supporting separatist activities, as well as all sales of natural sand to Taiwan from the mainland. Likewise, the People’s Liberation Army began the most large-scale military drills ever seen in its territorial waters around the island. A series of statements were announced, firmly reiterating that such egregious violations of international norms would not be taken lightly. 

On the 8th of August, the The Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, and the State Council Information Office of the People's Republic, published a white paper titled "The Taiwan Question and China's Reunification in the New Era". While white papers on the Taiwan question have been published before, the language of this one is much firmer, and the terms much stricter. Rather than enjoying almost fully autonomous status within a One Country Two Systems style arrangement, Taiwan is to be integrated with the mainland in a manner more closely resembling the current administrative arrangement with Hong Kong, which retains Special Administrative Region status but cannot, for example, maintain its own armed forces and foreign relations. “Reunification,” it is asserted, “is a process that cannot be halted.” Peaceful reunification is maintained as the highest goal, but reunification itself is inevitable, and any attempts to pry Taiwan from China — to create a Two Countries scenario — will fail.

Likewise, also on the 8th of August, in response to the United States’ “disregard of China’s strong opposition and serious representations”, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced eight countermeasures:

The Chinese Government also announced sanctions against Pelosi and her family of bandits, and reiterated its full commitment to mutual cooperation and development on the basis of respect and upholding of international laws and norms. Pelosi’s act of imperialist aggression, no doubt aimed at igniting a conflict in order to distract the public from the United States’ continued decline and Pelosi & family’s own personal scandals, did not end with China. After leaving Chinese territory, she likewise visited southern Korea, where the President of the Republic of Korea refused to meet with her; instead sending the Minister of Foreign Affairs to meet with Chinese counterparts in Beijing.

On the 12th of August, the International Department of the Communist Party USA published a statement condemning the violation of China’s sovereignty, declaring it a “dangerous provocation” aimed at stirring up “neo cold war” sentiments. “There is no scenario” the Communist Party says, “where the PRC will continue to tolerate endless foreign interference in its territory.” The statement ends with four demands:

In the ensuing weeks, military drills have continued, and statements have been issued, re-issued, and upheld. Some day in the not-so-distant future, August 2nd, 2022, will be remembered as the day when the status quo in the Taiwan Strait was shattered; it will be remembered as the day one small group of imperialist pigs, motivated by nothing more than their own hubris and greed, ensured their own end. The Fourth Taiwan Strait Crisis, as it has been dubbed, will not end like the others — with the arrival of US imperialist forces pressuring China to stand down. Those days are over. 

As President Xi Jinping alluded in his July 1st speech in 2021, the United States’ pig rulers are on a collision course. If they do not pull back, they will bear full responsibility for the consequences. 

We Chinese are a people who uphold justice and are not intimidated by threats of force. As a nation, we have a strong sense of pride and confidence. We have never bullied, oppressed, or subjugated the people of any other country, and we never will. By the same token, we will never allow any foreign force to bully, oppress, or subjugate us. Anyone who would attempt to do so will find themselves on a collision course with a great wall of steel forged by over 1.4 billion Chinese people.


After writing this article, editing it, and preparing it for publication on August 14th, the Mount Tai team were horrified to see the news, announced at 07:51 am Eastern, that another delegation led by a Democrat politician had arrived in Taiwan — this time completely unannounced. This is a nigh incomprehensible development that only makes sense with the understanding that American politicians — now very openly — are specifically seeking to stoke instability and conflict in the region. As President Joe Biden’s domestic crises continue to pile up day by day, and the American people are becoming more and more desperate for solutions, it seems the pigs are becoming equally desperate to find a scapegoat. It is not clear, as of writing, if this will result in another round of responses by the People’s Republic; at the very least, it will further reinforce the resolve to accelerate reunification. The United States was warned that if it played with fire, it would get burned — not only have the ruling class not stopped, they have the audacity to claim impunity. The only proper descriptor for this foreign policy approach is folly.