Taiwan is a self-ruled democratic republic of almost 24 million people and one of the freest nations on the planet. Unfortunately for Taiwan, it sits some 90 miles away from the People’s Republic of China across the Taiwan Strait.
The 1.4 billion people of the PRC are ruled by the Chinese Communist Party in a one-party totalitarian state under Chairman Xi Jinping. For more than a generation, the PRC has considered Taiwan a renegade province to be retaken, by force if needed.
Over the past two years, Taiwan’s determination to maintain its defenses was boosted as it watched the PRC violate its international agreements promising to maintain Hong Kong’s “One Country, Two Systems” arrangement. This recent absorption of Hong Kong into the PRC with little in the way of consequential international condemnation reaffirmed to Taiwan that Beijing cannot be trusted, while potentially signaling to the CCP it might do the same to Taiwan with fewer negative ramifications than previously