OPINION: The Departure of James Mattis Is a Dire Warning for Taiwan

Taiwan should note that the US can no longer be counted on to unconditionally support its allies.

The News Lens
Date: 2018/12/27
By: Brian Hioe

Credit: Reuters / Jim Young

The resignation of U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis after the unilateral decision by U.S. President Donald Trump to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria after a phone call with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan should be noted with caution in Taiwan.

While Mattis originally announced that he would resign at the end of February, after news broke, Trump decided to remove Mattis from his post immediately. However, the event has failed to raise much discussion in Taiwan, likely because of a general lack of awareness in Taiwan about America’s global security commitments except as they relate to the threat of China.

needs to call on her allies, will Donald Trump pick up the phone?
As an experienced military official and highly decorated veteran, Mattis was viewed as a stabilizing force within the Trump administration by many, along with other individuals such as former chief of staff John Kelly. With the departure of other individuals seen as stabilizing forces in the Trump administration, Mattis was seen as the last “adult in the room.”

In truth, despite much liberal idealization of Mattis, this is only in comparison to the rest of the Trump administration, Mattis being an individual whose previous actions had led to the nickname “Mad Dog,” for one. Yet Mattis’ departure should still throw cold water onto the idea that institutional checks or the “adults in the room” within the Trump administration would prevent Trump taking irreversible and dangerous courses of political action.    [FULL  STORY]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

I accept the Privacy Policy

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.