U.S. Navy Admiral Reportedly Visits Taiwan; U.S. Navy Rear Admiral Michael Studeman is Director of Intelligence for U.S. Indo-Pacific Command

According to Taiwan's Central News Agency (CNA) and the Tapei Times, Taiwan's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) has neither confirmed, nor denied, that U.S. Navy (Two-Star) Rear Admiral Michael Studeman is currently visiting democratically governed Taiwan.

Studeman is Direct of Intelligence for the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command.

Earlier in the day, MOFA was, apparently, willing to refute reports that the U.S. CIA Director was visiting. Regarding the Studeman visit, however, MOFA simply declined comment.

The Pentagon reportedly also has declined comment.

A day earlier, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had spoken favorably of the new U.S.-Taiwan Economic Prosperity Partnership Dialogue. Pompeo called the United States and Taiwan as partners in freedom, the strengthening of economic ties and the promotion of shared democratic values.

Some other recent visits to Taiwan by U.S. officials have included U.S. Health Secretary Alex Azar and U.S. Undersecretary of State Keith Krach, in late summer and early fall.

U.S. relations with Taiwan, the Republic of China, are sensitive due to the unwillingness of the mainland People's Republic of China to acknowledge the historical fact that Taiwan is a separate and free nation state.

The Taiwanese government in Taipei, called itself the government of the Republic of China, once ruled all of China, including in the mainland, or rather, earlier predecessors did. In contrast, the regime in Beijing, controlled by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), only rules the mainland and has never ruled all of historical China, given that it has never ruled Taiwan. The previous nationwide government retreated to Taiwan where, embracing capitalism, for decades, it was much more successful economically than the mainland, which only later began reforms to climb out of Communist stagnation.

To be fair, neither side has rejected the notion of "reunification" of the two elements of what used to be a broader China. However, one gathers that Taiwanese concepts of reunification would involve some kind of liberation of the mainland from the despotic repression of the CCP regime currently holding Beijing.

Meanwhile, the United States and mainland China have had growing differences over such issues as Red Chinese spy scandals, aggressive Red Chinese expansionism and militarism in the south China sea, including artificial "islands," trade disputes, human rights issues and oppression of Hong Kong and religious minorities in other areas.

Additional Resources:

MOFA has no comment on visit by US admiral - Tapei Times 11.23.20

U.S. Navy Admiral Reportedly Visits Taiwan; U.S. Navy Rear Admiral Michael Studeman is Director of Intelligence for U.S. Indo-Pacific Command - Sydney Morning Herald 11.23.20

Director for Intelligence, U.S. Indo-Pacific Command (J2): Rear Admiral Michael Studeman, U.S. Navy - Pacom.mil

Rear Admiral of the US Navy is on a visit to Taiwan - Free News 11.23.20

China: Reunification 'inevitable' as Taiwan’s Tsai starts second term in office; Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen won reelection in a landslide using a staunchly pro-independence platform. In response, Beijing has stepped up its rhetoric and military activity. - DW 5.2.20

Key Words: Taiwan, China, U.S. Navy, Michael Studeman, Asia, Pacific, Military, National Security, Republic of China

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