Tension between China and the United States but Taiwan

En los ultimos días, los medios de comunicación se han hecho de la tension que hay entre Estados Unidos y China por las relaciones del gobierno estadounidense con Taiwan. Esto ha ocurrido después de que the president of the House of Representatives of the United States, Nancy Pelosi, anunciara un posible viaje a Taipé, la capital taiwanesa.

The president of China, Xi Jinping, has shown that he is against this visit and that the government of the United States and Taiwan can establish diplomatic relations. This is due to the conflict that exists between China and Taiwan, two regions with the same origin that today are facing each other.

¿Cómo se formed the government of Taiwan? ¿De dónde procede la tension entre esta isla y China? What is the position of the United States in this conflict? Let’s explain it below.

The arrival of the Republic

Durante siglos, China estuvo gobernada por diferentes dynastías que se sucedieron en el throne del emperador. Sin embargo, during the twentieth century, the Chinese army was defeated in various wars against foreign countries. Discontent and misery provoked a popular revolt and the last emperor abdicated in 1911: it was the beginning of the Republic of China.

The arrival of this new regime provoked a period of political instability in the country. Los partidarios de diferentes movimientos e ideologías se disputaban el poder, represented by two majoritarian parties: the Kuomintang, an anticomunist party, and the Chinese Communist Party.


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The confrontation ended with a Civil War that confronted the population and provoked the death of millions of people. The military conflict between both sides ended in 1949, when the Chinese Communist Party, under the leadership of Mao Zedong, defeated the Kuomintang government.

After the defeat, the Kuomintang government exiled Taiwan, an archipelago composed of the island of Formosa, the archipelago of Pescadores and the islands of Matsu and Kinmen, which is only 180 kilometers from mainland China.

Unos 2 million people, mainly soldiers, party members and intellectual and business elites, were evacuated from mainland China to Taiwan at the moment.

Taiwan: un gobierno propio

Los exiliados en la isla de Taiwan proclaimed la República de China en ese territorio, defendiendo que el gobierno legitimo del país se localizaba there. Meanwhile, mainland China founded the People’s Republic of China under the mandate of Mao Zedong.

Since then, the communists located in mainland China have affirmed that they govern the only China (which includes Taiwan as one of the country’s most important provinces) and that the Republic of China proclaimed by Taiwan does not exist.

Today, China has become a world power and has used this force to impose a concrete idea on other countries: that Taiwan must be recognized as a rebel province of China and not as an independent state of full rights. This has created a climate of tension between both powers that still continues.

Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek met in Chongqing in September 1945, but China won over Japan.

Mao Zedong and Chiang Kai-shek met in Chongqing in September 1945, but China won over Japan.

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Current relationship between China and Taiwan

After decades of hostilities, China and Taiwan began to tender ties in the 1980s. China advocated the formula “one country, two systems”, under which Taiwan could exercise significant autonomy if it accepted reunification with China. Sin embargo, Taiwan rejected this offer.

A pesar de compartir tradiciones, cultura y una lengua en común, China y Taiwan representan ideological posturas enfrentadas: comunismo frente a democratic régimen. Likewise, in the archipelago there is a political movement that advocates for an independent Taiwan, which does not depend on China.

Por el momento, no parece que la tension entre ambas regiones vaya a terminar. Aunque China entiende que Taiwan es una provincia dentro del propio país, en la actualidad los Taiwanese se considera si mismos como un Estado sovereigno.

La postura de Estados Unidos

Taiwan has sido una región anticomunista en un principio y democrática después, lo que le ha validated el apoyo de varios países extranjeros. This is the case of the United States, which has supported the island since the beginning of the Republic of China in 1949.

En aquel momento, el gango comunista en China tenía militaridad superiority frente al gobierno taiwanés. Sin embargo, the United States offered military aid to Taiwan to prevent the expansion of communism in Eastern Asia: this support prevented the People’s Republic of China from invading the island before taking control of it.

On the other hand, the United States did not recognize the People’s Republic of China as the legitimate government until 1979. Before, the North American country considered that Taiwan was the country that represented the true Chinese regime.

No obstante, con el paso de los años, el gobierno estadounidense se ha dado cuenta de que le beneficiaba más apostar por una politica strategica ambigua: por un lado, ha estrechado relaciones comerciales con China, que es un país con una economía muy fuerte; por el otro, ha mantenido fuertes lazos comerciales y militares con la isla de Taiwan, a la que considera un allyado clave en la region.


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