The People’s Republic of China wouldn’t cease after capturing Taiwan and is perhaps emboldened to grab disputed territories from neighboring international locations, Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) warned on Tuesday.
“If China is able to capture Taiwan, there’s no reason to believe that the Chinese Communist Party would stop there. China also has territorial claims against the Philippines, Japan, Vietnam and India,” Cornyn stated on the Senate flooring.
“We shouldn’t view Taiwan as the CCP’s ultimate goal but as the first domino in a quest to reach regional and global dominance,” he added. “If Taiwan falls, it will not be the end, but rather a beginning.”
The senator was a part of a 12-person congressional delegation that made a low-profile go to to Taipei final week as a part of journeys to Indo-Pacific allies India and the Philippines. In a press release, Cornyn’s workplace named the opposite lawmakers—all Republicans—as Senators Mike Crapo of Idaho, Mike Lee of Utah and Tommy Tuberville of Alabama, in addition to Reps Tony Gonzales and Jake Ellzey, each from Texas.
Taiwan’s Foreign Ministry confirmed on Monday that the diplomatic go to came about between November 9 and 11, and included conferences with President Tsai Ing-wen and her nationwide safety adviser Wellington Koo, in addition to digital talks with Foreign Minister Joseph Wu. There have been additionally separate periods with Deputy Foreign Minister Tseng Hou-jen and Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng.
Wu, who was blacklisted by Beijing simply days earlier than the delegation’s arrival, described Taiwan as “democracy’s outpost, standing watch against authoritarianism,” Cornyn stated within the Senate.
The senator additionally used Tuesday’s Senate session to specific help for the National Defense Authorization Act for 2022—handed by the House in September—which incorporates a lot of articles that might bolster Taiwan’s self-defense functionality and would convey the U.S.-Taiwan safety partnership nearer than it has ever been. Among the proposals are the change of protection liaisons between Washington and Taipei in an effort to enhance “interoperability” between the 2 militaries.
Cornyn and Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) are additionally co-sponsors of the Taiwan Partnership Act, which seeks to forge a working relationship between the National Guard and the island’s reserves.
The delegation’s tour of Southeast Asia additionally included a go to to the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command headquarters in Hawaii. Cornyn, quoting USINDOPACOM Commander Admiral John Aquilino, stated: “It’s not a question of if China invades Taiwan, but when.”
Referencing a potential invasion timeline articulated by Aquilino’s predecessor, Admiral Philip Davidson, Cornyn stated China might assault Taiwan by 2027.
Like Aquilino, he stated it could be within the United States’ personal pursuits to stop battle throughout the Taiwan Strait.
“Taiwan might be safe for six years, but we can’t operate on that assumption,” the senator stated. “We need to work with Taiwan and our friends and allies in the region to raise the cost, such that the PRC decides it’s not worth its time and effort.”
“I believe we have a legal and moral obligation to stand with Taiwan and deter China from invading. And we also have our own national security at stake,” Cornyn stated. “There must be a strategy to dissuade China from an attempt to seize Taiwan. There’s no question that time is of the essence.”
When the House handed the protection act in September, Chinese Defense Ministry spokesperson Wu Qian accused “unscrupulous politicians” in Congress of “exaggerating the so-called ‘China threat’ without cause.”
Wu added that the invoice’s makes an attempt to strengthen U.S.-Taiwan safety ties have been “playing with fire.”