Author: brother Mao, this article is reproduced under the authorization of the official account brother Mao’s vision (id:maogeshijue).
Recently, high-level meetings between China and the United States have been held frequently, and the press releases of the two sides seem to be as thin as boiled water. Therefore, the outside world has interpreted what each said and failed to achieve any results. However, it is always good to sit down and talk. To tell the truth, these interpretations are not even scratch the surface. They are completely irrelevant.
Please remember a simple truth. It is absolutely not for the sake of each other’s words that China and the United States can sit down and talk. Both sides are very purposeful and have important missions. You must clear up the basic context before and after, so as to gain insight into the mystery.
Now I will tell you about my personal interpretation.
First, let’s talk about the background of the incident, which is very important.
On May 19, Sullivan called director Yang with the original intention of asking China for help (for a detailed interpretation, please refer to my historical article will war break out between China and the United States in the future?), But director Yang emphasized the Taiwan issue in particular. There is an important passage:
The Taiwan issue is the most important, sensitive and core issue in China US relations. However, the US side’s actual actions and statements on the Taiwan issue are quite different recently. If the US side insists on playing the “Taiwan card” and goes further and further on the wrong path, it will certainly lead the situation to a dangerous situation.
We urge the US side to recognize the situation, strictly abide by its commitments, and abide by the one China principle and the provisions of the three China US joint communiques. China is bound to take firm action to safeguard its own sovereignty and security interests. We have done what we said.
Note that this is the first time that China’s senior leadership has severely warned the US side on the Taiwan issue, “do what you say”.
Then after Biden’s visit to Japan, there happened to be a moth. On May 23, a Japanese reporter deliberately asked Biden whether the United States would intervene if China (mainland) attacked Taiwan by force? Lao Bai answered “of course”.
Whether Biden’s statement was intentional or a “slip of the tongue”, after all, it was the US president’s public remarks about military intervention in the Taiwan issue that had a very bad impact and immediately triggered a strong reaction from the Chinese side.
On the afternoon of May 23, at the regular press conference of the Ministry of foreign affairs, Wang Wenbin stressed that China expressed strong dissatisfaction and firm opposition to the American dialect theory. China will take firm actions to safeguard its own sovereignty and security interests. We will do what we say!
(source: spokesman Office of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs)
At that time, I thought this was China’s second warning. The Chinese people emphasized that there were no more than three things to do. If the US side allowed China to give a third warning, we might have to start.
Looking back, I was still too cautious. The correct understanding of this incident should be as follows: Director Yang’s first “words and deeds” was a warning, but after Biden deliberately provoked him with a “slip of the tongue”, Wang Wenbin’s “we said and deeds” was not a warning, but a declaration in advance!
So, what firm actions will China take to safeguard its own sovereignty and security interests?
Don’t worry, let’s talk about it later.
The above is the background of the recent China US high-level meeting. Understanding this background is very important for us to clarify the context of the later China US high-level meeting.
The first contest: China US defense ministers’ meeting
As for the meeting between Chinese and US defense ministers in Singapore, the outside world generally evaluates it as “hard hitting” or “full of gunpowder”. However, it is agreed that the purpose of the meeting is to try to build a “fence” between the two sides.
The purpose of establishing the “fence” is to prevent the two sides from violent conflicts due to miscarriage of justice. The US side has learned a painful lesson in this regard.
The 2021 China US high-level meeting in Alaska is a typical example.
At that time, before the high-level talks between China and the United States, the United States wisely did one thing, that is, it first shouted at Chinese barabarabara in front of the media, and then drove away the media to prepare for the formal talks.
The purpose of the US side in doing so is to create an impression of being extremely tough on China to the media all over the world. In the view of the US side, it is normal for the US side to make some small moves in the negotiations, but this is only the wishful thinking of the US side. In fact, this behavior of the US side immediately angered the Chinese side.
Because from the standpoint of the Chinese side, we are your invited guests. How can the host spray guests in front of everyone as soon as they meet? This is clearly disrespect for us!
The incident rose to the level of respect or not, which is another concept. Therefore, the Chinese side decisively asked the media to be called in again, and then offered a few famous cruel words in return:
“We thought of you very well. We thought you should abide by the basic diplomatic etiquette…”
“You are not qualified to say to China that you speak to China from a position of strength…”
Later, the incident was rated as a major rollover accident by some us think tanks. The reason for the accident was the US misjudgment of China.
Miscarriage of justice at the diplomatic level leads to rollover at most, that is, losing face. If miscarriage of justice at the military level leads to the outbreak of military conflict, it will be great.
Therefore, the US Defense Minister’s hasty meeting with the Chinese defense minister is intended to establish a safe “fence” to prevent direct military conflict between the two sides due to miscarriage of justice.
At present, there is a direct contact mechanism between the high-level military of China and the United States, but the United States believes that it is not reassuring. Therefore, the defense ministers’ meeting hopes that this direct contact mechanism can be established at the theater level of both sides.
So why did the US Defense Secretary rush to establish a “security fence” with China?
Obviously, the United States has heard some rumors and predicted that there may be more intense games with China in the future. In order to avoid the outbreak of direct military conflicts in these games, it can not wait to hope to establish a more reliable “fence” with China.
So, what has the US heard?
Don’t worry, we’ll talk about it later.
For the purpose of the United States, the Chinese side certainly has a clear mind, but the Chinese side’s statement is a bit groundbreaking.
“If anyone dares to split Taiwan, we will certainly fight to the end at all costs. This is China’s only choice.”
Our defense minister’s statement is highly targeted.
First, there is a view in the United States that the “one China” principle can be gradually hollowed out through the sausage cutting strategy, and finally Taiwan’s “de facto independence” can be achieved. In this process, the Chinese side will be afraid to start because it is too expensive to recover Taiwan.
Now the Chinese side’s statement can be said to have completely shattered this illusion. Our position is that “we will fight to the end at all costs”.
In the future, whether the United States will engage in sausage cutting strategy or military intervention, is it ready to “fight to the end at all costs” with China?
To tell the truth, in the Russian Ukrainian war, the answer is self-evident from the standpoint that the United States tried to avoid direct military conflict with Russia.
Second, under the manipulation of the US side to internationalize the Taiwan issue, some countries are ready to stir up trouble and even claim to intervene in the situation in the Taiwan Strait. Now that China has solemnly stated that “we will fight to the end at all costs, regardless of war. This is China’s only choice”, do these countries dare to intervene in the situation in the Taiwan Strait?
To tell you the truth, if China makes up its mind and is prepared to “fight to the end at all costs” to eliminate the interference of these countries, it will just crush some bedbugs!
Third, this is a warning to the US side.
What do you mean? Let’s talk about it later.
The second contest: Shayang Luxembourg meeting
Press releases from both sides of the talks were as bland as water.
The full text of China’s press release is director Yang’s position on the Taiwan issue, without any specific new content.
The US press release was also very dull. Sullivan kept repeating the same old saying – the United States adhered to the “one China” policy based on the three joint communiques, the Taiwan Relations Act and the six guarantees, and said it would ensure the stability of the Taiwan Strait and would not unilaterally change the status quo.
Because both sides are expressing their own positions on the Taiwan issue, the outside world generally interprets it as saying their own words.
But is that really the question?
Could it be that the high-ranking Chinese and American leaders went to Luxembourg for a meeting for four and a half hours just to say their own words?
The Shayang meeting was held on June 13, European time, which was about 6-8 hours earlier than our Beijing time. Therefore, I was puzzled when the press release was issued on the morning of June 13. It was not until the press conference of the Ministry of foreign affairs at 17 p.m. on June 13, Beijing time that the answer to the mystery was revealed and everything became clear!
So what happened at the press conference of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on June 13?
China takes a key step
Let me quote the official press release of the press conference of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on June 13.
Bloomberg: according to our news agency, in the past, when Chinese military officials met with US military officials, they repeatedly claimed that the Taiwan Strait is not an international waters. What is the foreign ministry’s comment on this?
Wangwenbin: Taiwan is an inalienable part of Chinese territory. The narrowest part of the Taiwan Strait is about 70 nautical miles and the widest part is about 220 nautical miles. In accordance with the United Nations Convention on the law of the sea and China’s domestic law, the waters of the Taiwan Strait extend from the coasts of both sides to the central line of the Strait, followed by China’s internal waters, territorial sea, contiguous zone and exclusive economic zone. China enjoys sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Taiwan Strait, while respecting the legitimate rights of other countries in the relevant sea areas.
In addition, there is no such thing as “international waters” in the international law of the sea. The countries concerned claim that the Taiwan Strait is an “international waters” in order to make excuses for their manipulation of Taiwan related issues and threats to China’s sovereignty and security. China firmly opposes this.
This is the first time that the Chinese Ministry of foreign affairs has publicly and completely stated that the Taiwan Strait is not an “international waters”!
This is also the first time that China has publicly declared that it enjoys sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Taiwan Strait!
This is a very, very critical step, which is of great significance.
Here is a brief introduction to the relevant knowledge.
What are internal waters, territorial seas, contiguous zones and exclusive economic zones?
(source: Baidu Encyclopedia)
Then, what are the specific rights of internal waters, territorial waters, contiguous zones and exclusive economic zones?
According to the United Nations Convention on the law of the sea and relevant Chinese laws, the territorial sea, airspace and subsoil within 12 nautical miles are within the scope of national sovereignty, and foreign ships enjoy the right of innocent passage.
Within its contiguous zone, the coastal state has the control power to prevent and punish violations of its customs, financial, immigration or health laws and regulations in its territory or territorial sea. It can be seen that the State exercises control in the contiguous zone in order to maintain its sovereignty and legal order, and to investigate and punish violators.
Within the exclusive economic zone, coastal States enjoy the rights of exploration, development, conservation and management, as well as jurisdiction over scientific research and marine environmental protection. All States shall enjoy freedom of navigation, overflight and laying submarine cables and pipelines, but shall not engage in activities endangering the sovereignty and security of coastal states.
To sum up, we have sovereignty within the territorial sea and jurisdiction within the exclusive economic zone of adjacent areas.
If ordinary civilian ships pass through these waters, there is no problem. However, if warships (or aircraft) want to pass through these waters, they must report to China in theory, and they can pass only with China’s permission. Otherwise, China can take measures to expel these slow-moving passengers with certain dangers.
Now let’s draw a picture by combining the above concepts with the Taiwan Strait.
The Taiwan Strait is 200 nautical miles wide and 70 nautical miles narrow. Therefore, 24 nautical miles along the coastline of both sides belong to the territorial sea, 48 nautical miles belong to the territorial sea and adjacent zone, and the rest are exclusive economic zones.
Therefore, there is absolutely no problem for the Chinese government to declare that it enjoys sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Taiwan Strait.
So what does it mean to declare these rights?
It means that the military equipment of foreign countries will be greatly restricted to pass through the Taiwan Strait. If a foreign warship enters our exclusive economic zone or adjacent zone without China’s permission, we can send a navy to monitor and expel it. If it enters our territorial sea (including the area extending 12 nautical miles from Taiwan’s coast), we can even directly regard it as “invasion” and directly destroy it (or shoot it down).
This is the first step!
It is also a key first step.
If this step is stable, it is logical that there will be the second and third steps in the future – now it is the official declaration that the Taiwan Strait, that is, the 12 nautical miles along the western coast of Taiwan Province, is the territorial sea of the people’s Republic of China, and the next step is that the entire 12 nautical miles along the coast of Taiwan Province are the territorial sea of the people’s Republic of China.
At this point, the United States should not even think about any small sausage cutting move. If you send military aircraft (or warships) to load congressmen to visit Taiwan, you will illegally invade China’s territorial waters and airspace. We can directly send military aircraft and warships to encircle and expel them!
Most importantly, China’s official declaration of sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Taiwan Strait will also serve as an army for the United States.
Didn’t you empty out the “one China” principle by practicing the sausage cutting strategy?
Didn’t you add the Taiwan Relations Act and the six guarantees to the three joint communiques?
Anyway, you have to admit the “one China” now, right?
Well, I will declare that the 12 nautical miles along Taiwan and the Taiwan Strait are China’s territorial waters according to the “one China” official declaration!
If you do not recognize it, you are negating the “one China principle”. The consequence is that “if anyone dares to split Taiwan, we will fight to the end at all costs and at all costs. This is China’s only choice.”
If you admit it, it means that China enjoys sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction in the Taiwan Strait. In the future, foreign warships and military aircraft, including the United States, will have to report to China when they pass through the Taiwan Strait, otherwise they will face severe consequences.
What should I do?
I checked. In response to the reply of spokesman wangwenbin of the Chinese foreign ministry, senior officials of the White House responded that the United States does not answer for China as to how China defines the Taiwan Strait.
Because Biden made a very bad “slip of the tongue” during his visit to Japan, China announced that it would take firm action to safeguard its own sovereignty and security interests, and officially declared that we would do what we said!
This makes the us very nervous. What action will China take?
Then, the US side combined with some recent rumors, which were roughly this – “Bloomberg reporter: according to our news agency, in the past, when Chinese military officials met with US military officials, they repeatedly claimed that the Taiwan Strait was not an international waters.”
The next step is for the US defense minister to meet with the Chinese side. The US Defense Minister has predicted that if the Chinese side completely declared that “Taiwan is not an international water area” and even claimed corresponding rights, there may be a fierce game in the Taiwan Strait in the future. In order to prevent this game from evolving into a direct military conflict, it is necessary to quickly set up a safe “fence”.
Although in the past, there was a direct communication mechanism between senior Chinese and US military officials, the US side believes that this “fence” is far from enough, and a direct communication mechanism must be set up at the theater level.
But at this time, the Chinese side has appropriately made unprecedented harsh remarks——
“If anyone dares to split Taiwan, we will certainly fight to the end at all costs. This is China’s only choice.”
What does that mean?
The meaning is very clear. You have predicted that China will take firm action to safeguard its own sovereignty and security interests. You foresee that after China takes action, there will be a fierce game in this region. You foresee that this game may lead to the outbreak of direct military conflict.
What should you do?
You should immediately cool the regional situation and avoid this sensitive area.
And how did you do it?
Hurry to find us and set up safety barriers!
What? Knowing that there are tigers in the mountain, do you prefer to travel in the tiger mountain?
Knowing that something might happen here, do you still have to come here to make trouble?
Is it certain that a security “fence” can avoid military conflict?
Now I’ll tell you our cards——
If anyone dares to split Taiwan, we will certainly fight to the end at all costs. This is China’s only choice.
Don’t misjudge China’s cards!
Personally, I think the bottom card clearly told us is the best safety “fence”.
The next step is the Sha Yang meeting. According to the press releases of both sides, on the surface, each side speaks its own words and sings its own tune. However, if we clarify the above context, it is easy to see that Sullivan’s purpose is very clear, which is to try to prevent (persuade) the Chinese side from giving up the major act of officially declaring that the Taiwan Strait is not an international waters.
However, director Yang once again demonstrated China’s hard line position——
China’s position on safeguarding China’s sovereignty and territorial integrity is unequivocal and unswerving. No other country can interfere in China’s internal affairs, and any act that obstructs or undermines China’s national reunification is bound to be a complete failure.
The Taiwan issue concerns the political foundation of China US relations. If it is not properly handled, it will have a subversive impact. Not only does this risk exist, but it will continue to rise as the United States pursues “using Taiwan to control China” and the Taiwan authorities pursue “relying on the United States for independence”. The US side should not have any misjudgments or illusions. It must abide by the one China principle and the provisions of the three Sino US joint communiques, and must carefully and properly handle Taiwan related issues.
In the past, since the Chinese officials declared that they would “do what they say”, this time they will do it “unequivocally and unswervingly”.
One day later, on June 13, wangwenbin announced at the press conference that the Chinese government enjoys sovereignty, sovereign rights and jurisdiction over the Taiwan Strait!
The dust settles!
The above is the context of frequent high-level meetings between China and the United States.
On the Taiwan issue, the Chinese side has taken a crucial step and looks forward to continuing in the future.
This article is reproduced under the authorization of official account brother Mao’s vision (id:maogeshijue).