‘Civil’ escalation with China

A top U.S. air force general predicted in a leaked memo last week that his country and China will go to war over Taiwan in 2025. Czech Pres.-elect Petr Pavel helped the escalation along in his own small way yesterday by speaking on the telephone with Taiwanese Pres. Tsai Ingwen, which was an almost unheard-of event for a top representative of the executive branch of a Western government (as opposed to the legislative branch). When Donald Trump did it in 2016, it caused a scandal. Neither Trump nor Pavel were yet president when they spoke with her, though, which is important from a diplomatic point of view. Pavel, who is still a private citizen under Czech law, told Czech Radio on Sun. (at 20:10) that he wouldn’t want to cause more damage than good by visiting Taiwan as president. Yesterday he said that he expressed the hope to madam president that he’ll have the opportunity to meet her in person in the future. That’s sufficiently vague that it keeps the escalation to a “civil” level for now.
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