Intellasia East Asia News – Russian losses, Putin sanctions ‘give Xi pause’ on Taiwan invasion: Pompeo

Former US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Friday (March 4) said that the losses suffered by invading Russian forces in Ukraine and the sanctions imposed on Russian President Vladimir Putin give Chinese Chair Xi Jinping “pause” when it comes to potential invasion of Taiwan.

During a press conference at the Grand Hyatt in Taipei on Friday afternoon, Pompeo was asked to comment on the notion highlighted by some US think-tankers “today Ukraine, tomorrow Taiwan,” in reference to fears that Taiwan could be the next democratic nation to be invaded by an autocratic state, following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Pompeo responded by saying that there were a number of reasons why Xi may be reconsidering his plans to invade Taiwan given recent events in Ukraine and the global response.

Pompeo emphasized that Taiwan is a democracy that has “great friends around the world and great friends in the region.” He said that he is convinced that “Xi Jinping is watching what is happening to Vladimir Putin, to the Russian military inside of Ukraine today that must be giving him great pause,” given that he had just met with the Russian leader several weeks ago and declared that their relationship was “unlimited.”

Pompeo is referring to a declaration made between Xi and Putin on the opening day of the Winter Olympics in Beijing that “friendship between the two states has no limits.” He remarked that the people “trapped inside of Ukraine regret that statement.”

The former Secretary of State added that the Russian people “who know that their leader is destroying lives in ways that are random and evil and depraved” can see that this is “not what they want for their country either.” He lamented that the West had failed to uphold a deterrence model that would have prevented Putin from invading Ukraine and deliberately targeting civilian targets.

In the case of Taiwan, he stressed that if the US, Taiwan, Southeast Asian countries, Pacific island nations, Australia, Japan, and South Korea work together to build a “consistent understanding that we’re going to draw the line, we’re going to be prepared to fight for the things that matter to most of us, we can continue to keep a military deterrence in place.”

He pointed out that beyond military force projection, Xi also engages in Wolf Warrior diplomacy, information warfare, and economic warfare. Pompeo asserted that the West must confront Xi on every element of his nation state’s power as he tries to “undermine the Western way of life.”


Category: Taiwan

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