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PacNet #24 – Effective U.S. diplomacy insures stability in Taiwan

Overshadowed by the difficulties facing U.S. policy in the Korean Peninsula is the success of relatively quiet but effective U.S. diplomacy in East Asia’s other major hotspot, the Taiwan Strait. Interviews with officials in Washington, Taipei, and Beijing in May-June 2005 make clear that the U.S. diplomatic interventions in late 2004 were critically important in changing what up to that point were weakly constrained moves by President Chen Shui-bian and his allies to pursue assertive pro-independence initiatives that China said risked war.