China has always looked seriously at taking over Taiwan ever since Chiang Kai-shek fled there 70 years ago. Now, President Biden is speaking up amid reports of the Chinese studying Russia’s successes — and failures — in Ukraine.
What he said today even caught administration officials by surprise.
As Fox News reports:
President Biden stated that the U.S. will send the military to defend Taiwan if the People’s Republic of China were to invade the island nation.
“Very quickly, you didn’t want to get involved in the Ukraine conflict militarily for obvious reasons. Are you willing to get involved militarily to defend Taiwan if it comes to that?” a reporter asked the president during a news conference in Japan.
“Yes,” Biden replied.
When asked for confirmation by the surprised journalist, Biden added, “That’s the commitment we made.”
The surprising interaction came in the middle of the president’s diplomatic trip to Asia. CNN’s John Berman noted this morning how Biden’s comments marked a reversal from the official U.S. policy of “strategic ambiguity” toward Taiwan.
The White House released a statement shortly after Biden spoke claiming that U.S. policy “has not changed.”
The White House’s attempt to dial back Biden’s statement is reminiscent of what happened nearly 2 months ago when the president was condemning Vladimir Putin over Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. Biden passionately stressed that the Russian leader “cannot remain in power,” and the White House subsequently insisted Biden was not proposing a “regime change” for Russia.