West News Wire: According to the Republican head of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, if China attacked the self-governing island of Taiwan, Washington would be authorized to engage in direct military conflict. 

The senior congressman from Texas, Michael McCaul, insisted in a televised interview on Friday that US lawmakers would agree to send troops overseas if the American people supported the proposal: “If communist China invaded Taiwan, it would certainly be on the table and something that would be discussed by Congress and with the American people.” 

McCaul reaffirmed, when speaking to right-wing Fox News from Taipei, where he is leading a bipartisan delegation to the land claimed by China, “If the American people support this, the Congress will follow.” 

The Hawkish legislator, however, failed to explain how his murky claim of popular support for a military conflict with China would be derived. 

McCaul then went on to insist that a “conflict is always a last resort,” describing the US delegation’s visit to Taipei as a means to “provide deterrence to China.” 

Beijing, however, regards the persisting political visits by US officials to Taiwan which China regards as an inalienable part of its sovereign territory as highly provocative and the key contributor to deteriorating tensions with Washington. 

On Saturday, the Chinese military announced the launch of three days of exercises in the Taiwan Strait. The drills held at the same time as McCaul’s visit to Taipei and just a day after the Taiwanese president returned from the US was designed as a warning to Taiwan and “external forces,” the Chinese military said. 

The American lawmaker further reiterated during the interview that discussions about a potential US use of force in the Indo-Pacific region would serve as a “deterrent for peace” since “you don’t have NATO in the Pacific.” 

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He then obnoxiously claimed that doing otherwise would mean inviting “aggression and war.” 

Later on Saturday, McCaul also vowed during a luncheon hosted by Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen in Taipei for the American congressional delegation that US lawmakers will help provide training for Taiwan’s armed forces and to speed up delivery of weapons to the island. 

As the House Foreign Affairs Committee chairman, I sign off on all foreign military sales, including weapons to Taiwan, and I promise you, Madam President, we will deliver those weapons,” the Republican lawmaker emphasized. 

“We are doing everything we can in Congress to speed up these sales and get the weapons that you need to defend yourselves,” he added. 

Since last year, Taiwan has complained about delays in the delivery of American weapons as US arms manufacturers divert supplies to Ukraine to bolster that country’s military effort against Russia.  

The Taiwan issue is “the first red line that must not be crossed in China-US relations,” the Chinese Foreign Ministry reiterated on Wednesday, as Beijing has consistently opposed Taiwan’s talks with the US.  

Even though Washington broke off official diplomatic ties with Taipei in 1979 in favor of Beijing, the two countries nonetheless maintain a tight military alliance since the US continues to be Taiwan’s principal foreign supplier of armaments.  

Taiwan is regarded by China as the most delicate and crucial issue in its relations with the US, and the topic remains a constant source of friction between Beijing and Washington. 


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