President Biden is on his first trip to Asia as president to meet with other leaders from the “Quad” — Japan, India, and Australia — as part of efforts to counter China’s growing power in the region. During the trip, Biden has contradicted longstanding U.S. policy of “strategic ambiguity” on Taiwan by vowing to defend it militarily if China attacks. “This idea that the United States is obligated to come to the defense of Taiwan if it [China] attacked, is simply not U.S. policy,” says Michael Swaine, director of the Quincy Institute’s East Asia program. Swaine says the official U.S.-China policy on Taiwan — which prioritizes peaceful unification over military force — has been subtly weakened by both sides, and “President Biden’s recent comment weakens it even further.”
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