Like the vast majority of nations, the US has switched its recognition of the legitimate Chinese government from Taipei to Beijing, but also continues to funnel military equipment to Taiwan. Staged events like Wednesday’s transit of the Taiwan strait, the seventh this year, are meant to show a willingness to defend the island from Chinese attack.
After the latest transit of the Taiwan Strait by a US warship, China’s Ministry of National Defense has lashed out, denouncing the action as provocative and dangerous. It comes just days after two US government aircraft landed on Taiwan, which China considers Chinese territory.
Shi added the American warship, the destroyer USS Benfold, was tracked and shadowed by Chinese air and sea forces as it sailed through the waterway that separates Taiwan from mainland China. He noted troops of the Eastern Theater were “ready to respond to all threats and provocations” and would defend China’s national sovereignty and territorial integrity.
Beijing considers Taiwan a part of China and a province in rebellion, meaning its dispute with the autonomous government in Taipei is a purely internal affair. That government is all that remains of the old Republic of China, a state that existed from 1912 to 1949, when the communist Red Army was victorious and established the People’s Republic of China in the national capital of Beijing.
Last year, 15 US warships crossed the strait, while the year before they did so nine times, according…