The clash between China and Taiwan and the issue of Chinese dualism

Here we go again. New winds of war are blowing over the South China Sea and this time more violently than ever. Beijing has launched large-scale military exercises around the rebellious island simulating ,in effect, a naval blockade that would have catastrophic consequences for the Taiwanese economy. These developments took shape immediately after the departure of the European diplomatic representation that arrived in Beijing last week to convince the Chinese establishment to pressure the Russian political leadership to accept the West’s terms regarding the Ukrainian conflict. Which already raises questions about the outcome of those meetings, which allegedly went very badly and led to no agreement. And they have, on the contrary, led to the realization that at the moment there is no convergence of interests and intentions between East and West. This makes realistic war developments even in the South China Sea for which Beijing seems to be actively preparing. The new military maneuvers in the South China Sea are but a demonstration of such preparation as well as a clear message to the West regarding the fact that the Chinese are losing patience. Without an equal agreement the Chinese will go to war. They will not accept conditions imposed by force or external pressure, economic or otherwise.But let us try to analyze in detail the nature of the issue of Chinese geopolitical dualism and how it came about.


As is well known, the birth of Nationalist China (as opposed to the People’s China “founded” in 1949 by Mao Tse Tung’s Communist militia that had prevailed over Chiang Kai-Shek’s Nationalist army) dates back to 1949 when China’s Nationalist army, defeated by Mao’s Communist army, took refuge on the island of Taiwan (then still referred to as “shapely”) to avoid complete annihilation and founded the state of Nationalist China (deemed by Chiahg Kai-Shek to be that of the real China) as opposed to the Communist state that was simultaneously taking shape in mainland China. The United States of America immediately exploited the issue of Chinese dualism by allying with Taiwan and making a military pact with it in an anti-communist capacity. Although there has never been good blood between the “two Chinas,” this status quo has lasted throughout the 20th century and, on balance, to the present day.Today, however, the economic and military clout of mainland China ( consequent to Beijing’s rise as the world’s geopolitical superpower) make the Chinese dualism much more fragile and “unbalanced” in favor of mainland China, which would like to resolve the long-standing issue and bring the rebellious island back under Beijing’s direct control. Above all, Washington and Taipei’s ties (not only economic but also military) are perceived as a direct threat to mainland China’s interests and expansion in the region. Then again, in the U.S. geopolitical vision of the Far East, that is precisely Taiwan’s function. That is, to “contain” Beijing’s expansion in the area and maintain direct control (including military) over the entire region by fostering a complex of alliances in an anti-Chinese function that limit Beijing’s hegemonic claims in the area. In truth, with the exception of the Philippines, only the vassal countries of the U.S. and Britain in the Indo-Pacific have pandered to Washington’s geopolitical aims in the region (i.e., Japan and South Korea, still subject to U.S. military occupation as a result of the well-known geopolitical developments in the Far East between 1941 and 1953, and Australia being part of the British Commonwealth).Everyone else has formed alliances with the Chinese economic giant or otherwise found a modus vivendi with the middle empire. The divide-and-conquer strategy of the Anglo-Saxon empire has also entered a crisis in the Indo-Pacific macro-region and still seems to work only in the geopolitical confrontation between the “two Chinas” also due to the fact that the power relations and balance of power are currently so unbalanced in Beijing’s favor that Taipei would have no chance of winning, in the case of an economic and military confrontation, with People’s China. Hence Taiwan’s need to call on the American “umbrella.” And in Washington they are thrilled to be able to use Taipei in their global confrontation with Beijing also by virtue of the special geographical nature of the Taiwanese archipelago. Let’s try to understand why.


When one speaks of Taiwan, one immediately thinks of the island of formosa (so named by the Portuguese navigators who first ,among Westerners, visited the island) but the Taiwanese archipelago is also composed of other islands (the most important are Pescadores, Quemoy, Matsu, etc.).The Taiwanese archipelago extends in longitude for many kilometers into the South China Sea, which makes it form a kind of “shield” in front of the coast of the People’s Republic of China. From the Taiwanese archipelago all movements of the Chinese fleet (both merchant and military) as well as military troop movements on the coast of South China can be controlled. Taiwan thus poses a strategic security problem for Beijing. Its location is critical to taking control and possession of the entire South China Sea. Without control of this island, no real strategic superiority can be achieved in the South China Sea. And its status as a hostile country and ally of Beijing’s biggest geopolitical antagonist makes it a truly vital issue for the Chinese establishment. That’s why the island is constantly in the sights of China’s political leadership. All the more so today when the confrontation between China and the United States of America is becoming more bitter than ever. For Beijing to take possession of the rebellious island means resolving the issue of Chinese dualism and gaining undisputed strategic-military superiority in the Far East. As well as depriving its greatest geopolitical rival of a territorial base from which to threaten the security and trade of the Middle Empire.For the U.S., maintaining the geopolitical status quo in the South China Sea means not only frustrating the expansionist and hegemonic aims of the Chinese empire but also maintaining Taiwan as the real “guardian” of U.S. interests in the region. It is obvious ,then, that Washington’s geopolitical and geostrategic vision conflicts, in every way, with Beijing’s. And at the moment there seems to be no possibility of reconciliation between these two visions so distant and opposed.


The geopolitical dynamic taking shape in the Far East leads to war. This is not a wish. It is not a wish. But it is just a consideration based on the “objectivity” of the facts as well as the drama of the events that are ripening in this specific geopolitical arena. Neither on the Chinese nor on the American side are there any signs of detente capable of establishing an effective geopolitical and geostrategic modus vivendi. And when there are nothing but dialogues of the deaf between rivals, the word generally goes to arms. Then again, it is a script that has been repeated for centuries. The would-be hegemon pressing to become hegemon and the still hegemon resisting and forcibly opposing the newcomer’s claims. This is our “reading” of events. Let’s hope we are wrong. Otherwise, it won’t be long before the clang of arms resounds where the sun rises.

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