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Fighting words: Bolton says Trump ought to ‘renegotiate’ One-China policy

This isn’t going to make Beijing happy, but perhaps it needs to be done

(NationalSentinel) Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton dropped a diplomatic bombshell overt the weekend when he openly urged the Trump administration to “renegotiate” the current “One China” policy that recognizes China and not Taiwan, a statement that is sure to drive another wedge between Beijing and Washington in what is already a tense relationship.

Trump upset Beijing shortly after he won the Nov. 8 election when he took a congratulatory phone call from Taiwan’s president, Tsai Ing-wen, which he later defended. But Bolton’s comments will take the level of anger in Beijing to a new height.

As reported by the Washington Free Beacon:

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton on Friday urged President Donald Trump to upend four decades of precedent by renegotiating the “One China” policy that denies Taiwan’s sovereignty.

Bolton told the Washington Free Beacon in an exclusive interview that the One China policy, which was established during President Richard Nixon’s visit to China in 1972, is “ahistorical” and fails to reflect the current reality in East Asia, where natives of Taiwan overwhelmingly identify as “Taiwanese” rather than “Chinese.”

“The One China policy is inherently ambiguous,” Bolton said. “China thinks it means one thing, we think it means another.”

Beijing maintains that One China means the People’s Republic of China is the sole legitimate China, encompassing Taiwan.

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But the Shanghai Communiqué agreed to by the United States and China explicitly says the United States “acknowledged” that “all Chinese” on either side of the Taiwan Straight believe “there is but one China.” The pact does not deny Taiwan’s sovereignty on its face.

Earlier, in a speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference, Bolton addressed the China-Taiwan issue, saying that the Trump White House should “make clear” there will never be reunification between China and Taiwan without the “express, overwhelming consent” of those living in Taiwan.

“It’s time for constructive clarity,” Bolton said. “We support the people of Taiwan. We support their continued self-government, independent of China.”

He told the WFB China would be the United States’ biggest strategic challenge in the 21st century, surpassing Russia. He said the president should pressure the Chinese to back away from militarizing the South China Sea, and push for eliminating North Korea, diplomatically, by pushing for Korean unification. And he said the White House should either renegotiate or scrape the New START nuclear arms control agreement because the only nation that it really applies to is the U.S.

“There’s only one country in the world that’s bound by this treaty—China’s not bound by it, North Korea and Iran aren’t bound by it, theoretically Russia is, but they don’t pay any attention to it,” Bolton said. “There’s only one country that can’t build intermediate-range nuclear forces and that’s us.”

Bolton was in the final running for the national security advisor position vacated by Michael Flynn, but Trump selected Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster instead.

After choosing McMaster, the president said Bolton would be used “in a different capacity,” and that he agreed with many of Bolton’s suggestions and idea.s

© 2017 USA Features Media

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