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  • Commentary posted September 19, 2014 by William T. Wilson, Ph.D. America's Secret Weapon to Secure Taiwan's Future: Trade

    With geopolitical tensions increasing throughout East Asia, the United States has sorely neglected a key strategic partner: Taiwan. Its per capita GDP of roughly $39,000, as measured in purchasing power parity ($21,000 at current exchange rates), makes Taiwan one of the richest countries in Asia. Yet it has been largely left out of the rapid integration that has long…

  • Backgrounder posted August 1, 2014 by William T. Wilson, Ph.D. Market Solutions Should Be Central to U.S.’s Taiwan Policy

    Successive American presidential Administrations, guided by the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act, have recognized that a Taiwan that is free to make its own decisions, free from coercion by the People’s Republic of China (PRC), is in the vital national security interest of the United States. The Taiwan Relations Act, in fact, is explicit about the connection between Taiwan’s…

  • Backgrounder posted March 19, 2014 by Dean Cheng Taiwan’s Maritime Security: A Critical American Interest

    Taiwan’s security is inextricably linked to the sea. Indeed, the island’s economic livelihood, as well as its national security, requires that Taipei secure the surrounding waters and have access to global sea-lanes. Consequently, Taiwan’s ability to field a modern navy is an essential element of its security strategy. The Taiwan Strait is a key international waterway,…

  • Special Report posted October 7, 2013 by Walter Lohman, John Fleming, Olivia Enos A New View of Asia: 24 Charts that Show What's at Stake for America

    The Asian Studies Center Introduction Geography Economic Stakes Political Stakes Security Challenges Introduction: A New View of America's "Near West" At The Heritage Foundation’s annual B. C. Lee Lecture this year, the Chairman of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs summed up perfectly America’s destiny as regards Asia: It is America’s “Near…

  • Issue Brief posted June 24, 2013 by Walter Lohman Helping Southeast Asia Come to Grips with the Reality of Taiwan

    The Philippines’ National Bureau of Investigations (NBI) has recommended that criminal charges be filed against Filipino coast guard personnel involved in an incident that sparked a major dispute between the Philippines and Taiwan last month. On May 9, a Taiwanese fisherman, Hung Shih-cheng, was shot and killed by Filipino authorities when his fishing boat and a…

  • Issue Brief posted June 5, 2013 by Dean Cheng F-16C/D Fills Taiwan’s Fighter Need

    There has been a growing undercurrent of discussion in Taiwan over whether it should proceed with its long-standing request for purchase of F-16C/Ds or seek F-35s instead. Taiwan’s official position is that it needs new fighters that are more advanced than the upgraded F-16A/Bs currently in the pipeline. The Taiwan media’s focus on the F-35, however, belies political…

  • Lecture posted May 1, 2013 by Honorable Ed Royce The Enduring Legacy of America’s Commitment to Asia

    EDWIN J. FEULNER: I’m Ed Feulner. For the next 13 days, I am the president of The Heritage Foundation. I’m delighted to have with us this morning my successor as the new president of The Heritage Foundation, Senator Jim DeMint. Senator, we are very happy that you are able to join us this morning for our 16th annual B.C. Lee Lecture. It’s good to see so many friends…

  • Issue Brief posted October 3, 2012 by Jessica Zuckerman Taiwan Admitted to the Visa Waiver Program

    The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has announced the addition of Taiwan to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Taiwanese citizens will now be eligible to travel to the U.S. for up to 90 days visa-free. However, key U.S. allies and friends—such as Poland, Bulgaria, Romania, and Croatia—continue to be left waiting to join the VWP. These delays make little sense given…

  • White Paper posted July 17, 2012 by Walter Lohman, John Fleming, Robert Warshaw Key Asian Indicators: A Book of Charts

    America’s Enduring Leadership in Asia America has been engaged in Asia since a few decades after securing its independence. Its early interest is documented in the 1833 Treaty on Amity and Commerce between the U.S. and the Kingdom of Siam Thailand), and later in the market-opening 1854 Treaty of Kanagawa with Japan. The U.S. has, in fact, been a “resident…

  • Commentary posted June 27, 2012 by Walter Lohman Clear signals needed on F-16C/Ds

    Preserving and promoting the US’ legal obligation to provide for Taiwan’s self-defense needs is a tricky business. Every sale — particularly the biggest — must wind its way through a complex maze of US and Taiwanese party politics, bureaucracies, legislators and media. Often, the US and Taiwan are not aligned internally, let alone with one another. The People’s…

  • Issue Brief posted June 8, 2012 by Theodore R. Bromund, Ph.D., Dean Cheng Arms Trade Treaty Could Jeopardize U.S. Ability to Provide for Taiwan’s Defense

    The U.N. Arms Trade Treaty (ATT) will be negotiated in July in New York. One reason to be concerned about the ATT is the risks that it poses to America’s ability to sell arms to Taiwan. The U.S. is legally—as well as strategically and morally—obliged to provide for Taiwan’s defense. It should neither sign nor ratify a treaty that would increase the difficulty of meeting…

  • Commentary posted January 25, 2012 by Walter Lohman American Strategy, Values Coincide in Asia

    America's strategic interests in Asia go hand in hand with democratic values. Not by accident, all of our formal security allies in Asia - Australia, Japan, South Korea, the Philippines and Thailand - are democracies. And events are trending further in this direction. Taiwan recently conducted its fifth direct presidential election since 1996, further proof of…

  • WebMemo posted January 17, 2012 by Jessica Zuckerman, James Dean Bring Taiwan into the Visa Waiver Program

    On December 22, 2011, Taiwan was nominated by the U.S. Department of State for inclusion in the Visa Waiver Program. Since 1986, the Visa Waiver Program has facilitated travel and tourism in the United States for individuals from friendly member nations, and security measures added since the program’s inception have made the program essential. Yet despite these many…

  • Backgrounder posted December 6, 2011 by Dean Cheng, Bruce Klingner Defense Budget Cuts Will Devastate America’s Commitment to the Asia–Pacific

    Abstract: The failure of the Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (“Super Committee”) to come to agreement on reducing the federal deficit raises the real prospect of a total of $1 trillion in additional cuts to the defense budget over the next decade. These cuts have been put forth with little consideration for their long-term impact:…

  • Play Movie Senator Lieberman Grades President Obama on His Foreign Policy Video Recorded on November 3, 2011 Senator Lieberman Grades President Obama on His Foreign Policy

    Senator Joe Lieberman (I-CT) visited Heritage to give the annual B.C. Lee lecture, focusing on the importance of American leadership in the Asia-Pacific region. After his speech, he sat down with us for a wide-ranging interview on free trade, Taiwan, the pitfalls of the Afghanistan withdrawal, and the implications of the Super Committee's decisions for our national…