John J. Tkacik, Jr. is an Adjunct Professor at IWP. He formerly served as Chief of China Analysis at the U.S. State Department Bureau of Intelligence and Research. Full bio

American ‘policy’ versus Chinese ‘principle’

Ned Price, spokesperson of the United States Department of State, is a Twitter influencer at the exalted “celebrity/macro” rank. So, even though it was well after working hours on Friday evening, May 20, 2022 — as Secretary of State Antony Blinken prepared for President Biden’s first presidential trip to Asia — Ned Price was sure…

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On Taiwan: ‘John Foster Dulles and the Fate of Taiwan’

“John Foster Dulles and the Fate of Taiwan” by James C.H. Wang, Yu Shan Publishers, Taipei, 2021, 268 pages, NT$450.00 I shall begin this book review with an allusion to that legendary “hunk of burning love” Elvis Presley whose seductive voice, terpsichorean undulation and virile pulchritude made him the world’s first “rock star” in 1957.…

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Commemorating Shanghai, Narnia

On Monday, February 28, 2022, the Department of State press spokesman addressed a question relating to “Narnia National Day,” an issue that will become clear below. Earlier that same day, Wang Wenbin (汪文彬), the press spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced that “this morning, the Meeting in Commemoration of the Fiftieth Anniversary…

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On Taiwan: Taiwan, Ukraine and a 75th anniversary

Dear Reader, I intended to write about something that happened 75 years ago. But, last week saw a major war erupt in East Europe and I cannot ignore it. And, this week sees alarm spread across the globe that war may also break out in East Asia starting in the Taiwan Strait. It is almost…

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Taiwan’s ‘meaningful participation’

Ironically, October 25, 2021, was a milestone in Taiwan’s “meaningful participation” in the international community. “Ironic” because Taiwan was booted out of the United Nations exactly 50 years before. Beijing cynically celebrated the same anniversary of the “People’s Republic’s” admission to the United Nations and “the expulsion forthwith of the representatives of Chiang Kai-shek” (蔣介石)…

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‘Taipei’ or ‘Taiwan’? TECRO’s rectification of names

It is just a teensy-weensy change, a change of one little syllable. It is barely noticeable unless you’re watching really carefully: The Tai-“pei” Representative Office in Washington, D.C. (TECRO) could soon change its name — just ever so very slightly — to Tai-“wan” Representative Office. The office’s “TECRO” initials would remain the same. It will…

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‘War means Taiwan independence’?

I was a bit startled last week when Legislative Yuan Speaker You Si-kun (游錫堃) suggested that the United States could extend official recognition to an independent Taiwan if China were to launch an invasion. While I think Speaker You is correct, I am not sure it is a helpful point of view. Naturally, there are…

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The offshore islands and Taiwan’s future

Over the past year, scores of gargantuan Chinese sand dredgers have deployed themselves in territorial waters off the Taiwanese-administered Matsu Islands, where their activities erode beaches and ruin fishing shoals. These Chinese ships are mercenary; a small 5,000 ton ship could sell a load of sand for the equivalent of US$55,000 to Fujian construction firms…

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On Taiwan: China’s 2021 demands

The Chinese always test incoming American presidents. George W. Bush had his “EP-3 Hainan Incident” (he announced an US$8 billion arms package for Taiwan); Obama had his “USNS Impeccable” (he ignored it, the Chinese then confronted several other US naval vessels, still nothing; it told them all they needed to know). President-elect Donald Trump had…

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