On the Trump-Tsai Phone Call Controversy

“The so-called ‘One China’ principle, policy or consensus are just white lies devised by diplomats and policymakers to keep the peace.”

You say that as if keeping the peace is no big deal. But Great Power war is atrocious, and the many downsides of a Great Power cold war are nearly as bad.

You’re right that China is not a democracy, but every government is concerned with its domestic audience. If they weren’t, they wouldn’t spend so much time and money working to control public opinion.

The danger with an American president violating the One China policy comes from making Chinese leaders look weak in public, which leads to an escalating spiral of posturing between the US and China, undermining Great Power cooperation and increasing tensions.

If “white lies” are all it takes to keep the peace, that’s a tiny price for a massive good.

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