Nixon’s One China Policy Recognized Taiwan as Being Part of China
[Geoff Young is the Democratic Party’s nominee for Congress in Kentucky’s sixth Congressional district. Below is a letter he wrote to Attorney General Merrick Garland—Editors.]
Democratic Nominee for Congress
Kentucky’s 6th Congressional District
2430 Millbrook Drive
Lexington, KY 40503
Campaign website: Young4ky.com
September 20, 2022
Attorney General Merrick Garland
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001
Dear Attorney General Garland:
I believe that several sitting members of the U.S. House and Senate have violated the Logan Act of 1799 by visiting Taiwan during the past 12 months. Two of them would be House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and my Republican opponent, Andy Barr (KY-6). The pertinent paragraph of the act reads as follows:
In the First U.S.-China Joint Communique in 1972, President Nixon, representing the United States, wrote that the United States “acknowledges that all Chinese on either side of the Taiwan Strait maintain there is but one China and that Taiwan is a part of China.” That is the One-China Policy, and it has never been superseded by a new treaty signed by both China and the U.S.
For approximately the past twelve months, the United States has had no coherent or understandable Taiwan policy at all. President Joe Biden has repeatedly said that the United States would send troops to Taiwan to defend its government if China were to invade Taiwan; but the President’s national security team immediately walks back all such statements and announces to the American people that no, our One-China Policy is unchanged and the United States continues to refuse to say whether or not we will send troops to Taiwan to defend its government if China were to invade Taiwan. That is known as the U.S. policy of “strategic ambiguity.” As a result of these mixed messages coming from the Executive Branch, no one on earth knows for sure what the Taiwan policy of the United States is today.
In the absence of any coherent new policy, we, the American people, the government of China, the government of Taiwan, and all of the other governments and peoples of the world must assume that America’s One-China Policy and the associated policy of strategic ambiguity are still in effect. We must assume that “the measures of the United States,” per the Logan Act of 1799, are still the One-China Policy and the associated policy of strategic ambiguity.
If a coherent policy can be likened to a living, breathing, ten-month-old pig, it would be meaningless to say that it has been replaced, in its entirety, by a dozen pork chops cut from a dozen different four-month-old, previously-butchered pigs. America’s Taiwan Policy today is like a dozen pork chops.
Although I’m not a lawyer, it seems to me that the Logan Act of 1799 cannot be applied against the President of the United States, the Secretary of State, or any of the unnamed White House officials who have been walking back President Biden’s statements about Taiwan for the past year or so. But it can certainly be applied against all of the members of the U.S. House and Senate who have visited Taiwan over the past twelve months. China has vigorously protested every one of those visits in the strongest possible terms, has conducted numerous military exercises near Taiwan, and has made it clear for decades that it will never allow Taiwan to break away from China, even if it must use military force to prevent it.
The dispute between Washington and Beijing over the future of Taiwan might be the most heated dispute in the world today—even hotter, perhaps, than Washington’s undeclared proxy war against Russia in Ukraine. It is essential that ignorant, reckless, misinformed members of the U.S. House and Senate do not trigger a fateful blow-up in and near Taiwan by making unauthorized trips and statements that enrage 1.4 billion Chinese people and their government.
I don’t think there have been any violations of the Logan Act in the past 223 years that have been as bad as the violations committed by all of the Senators and House members who have visited Taiwan in the last twelve months. Please immediately assign a tough, experienced prosecutor to this case, indict all of the violators, and seek their conviction and imprisonment for three years.
Virtually no investigation is needed. In order to get votes in their home districts, all of the violators have boasted in public about their visits to Taiwan, and the State Department should require no more than 30 minutes to provide you all with a complete list. Getting all of these alleged felons convicted should be a slam dunk.
Yours in Peace,
Geoffrey M. Young
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About the Author
Geoff Young is the Democratic Party’s nominee for Congress in Kentucky’s sixth Congressional district.
Born in Boston and brought up in Marblehead, Massachusetts, he developed his political consciousness reading books by Noam Chomsky on the Vietnam War and studying under Chomsky at MIT.
After working in Kentucky’s state energy agency promoting energy efficiency and renewable energy, Young became active in local politics.
He is currently running on a platform of abolishing the CIA and AFRICOM and pushing for the end of U.S. military support to Nazis in Ukraine.
Geoff can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.