Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has continued for almost a year now,* and war in the Middle East has recently flared up again. The war between Israel and the Palestinian Islamic group Hamas has caused hundreds of thousands of civilian casualties in Gaza. While calls for a humanitarian cease-fire have grown across the globe, it seems so has the likelihood that the conflict will spread to neighboring countries. Large democratic powers such as the U.S. and those in Europe have addressed the conflict unevenly, which has widened international rifts between religious groups that follow Islam’s Allah and the Judeo-Christian god. China and Russia, authoritarian countries that have long been on friendly terms with developing nations, are seeing a resurgence in power. In the current period of global chaos, the U.S. seems to want to restabilize relations with China.
Currently, the European Union, a transnational geopolitical organization, has 27 member countries. However, their opinions are mixed, their consensus building is slow and their diplomatic ability in the face of international matters is limited. Moreover, Germany and France, which both frequently express their opinions and desire control, may not necessarily agree with America’s positions. International order after the pandemic has undergone various changes, while democratic countries are bogged down by domestic problems. Authoritarian China and Russia are keeping a close eye on international affairs.
Russia’s national strength has suffered from international sanctions incurred by its war with Ukraine. However, China’s rise to hegemony has put the EU and U.S. on guard. In the face of a post-pandemic economic slump, after suppressing China, the U.S. now wants to cooperate with it to revive the economy. As the international situation becomes more chaotic, the U.S. increasingly hopes to stabilize relations with China because, should the situation in the South China Sea and Taiwan Strait deteriorate, it would be difficult to imagine what sort of terrible condition the world would sink into.
Although the situation in the Taiwan Strait has gained international attention in recent years, the U.S. has shifted from trying to suppress China to striving to stabilize relations because of economic and international strategic considerations. Recently, officials from both sides have held intense meetings, and Joe Biden and Xi Jinping will meet at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation forum. Democratic allies such as the EU and Australia have also recently softened their attitude toward China. Taiwan must watch the evolving situation closely and respond whenever necessary to various changing circumstances.
*Editor’s Note: Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, or almost two years ago.