Biden's Taiwan pledge was no 'gaffe,' says analyst

HISTORY: "It wasn't a blip," David Sacks of the Council on Foreign Relations told Reuters.
"If China were to use force against Taiwan, there is really only one person who would decide whether the United States would come to Taiwan's defense, and that is the President of the United States. He is not a White House or State spokesman. He is not an official of the National Security Council. It's the president," Sacks said.
While Washington is legally required to provide Taiwan with means of self-defense, it has long maintained a policy of "strategic ambiguity" about whether it would intervene militarily to protect Taiwan in the event of a Chinese attack.
A reporter asked Biden at a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida Monday in Tokyo whether the United States would defend Taiwan if it was attacked. "Yes," replied the President.
"That's the commitment we made," said Biden, who helped build an international coalition trying to thwart Russia's invasion of Ukraine.
“We agree to a one China policy. We agreed to it and made all the intended arrangements. But the idea that it (Taiwan) can be taken by force just isn't, just isn't appropriate," he said.
Biden added it was his expectation that such an event would not happen or be attempted.
But the comment is likely to be closely watched in a region worried about China's growing influence. China was a key topic for Biden on his inaugural trip to Asia.

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