Cover: Taiwan Developments and Their Implications for U.S.-PRC Relations

Taiwan Developments and Their Implications for U.S.-PRC Relations

Published 1984

by Lucian Pye


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This study, based on extensive interviews conducted in Taiwan during August 1983, assesses how people in Taiwan have reacted to their evolving circumstances in recent years — specifically, to derecognition by the United States and the establishment of diplomatic relations between the United States and the People's Republic of China (PRC), and to the worldwide economic recession of the late 1970s and early 1980s — and how they view prospects for the future of their island. It considers the policy implications of these changes for U.S. relations with Taiwan and the PRC, and concludes that (1) it is essential for the United States to recognize the complex realities of political life in Taiwan and not assume that discrete pressures can produce precise outcomes; (2) if the United States wants to increase its influence over the political process in Taiwan, it will have to become more involved in that society and polity than it is today; and (3) the PRC's interests probably are best served by continuing tolerance of the formula of "sovereignty," which has kept Taiwan from moving toward complete "independence" and total abandonment of its symbolic association with China.

This report is part of the RAND note series. The note was a product of RAND from 1979 to 1993 that reported other outputs of sponsored research for general distribution.

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