Democracy Victorious: U.S. Must Defend Global Civilization with Justice, Sympathy, and Humility
Within the short span of three months, Taiwan Legislative Speaker You Si-kun has visited the U.S. twice. In February, he was in Washington, D.C. to attend events representing D.C.’s core values: the International Religious Freedom (IRF) Summit and National Prayer Breakfast.
There, he gave public remarks and condemned the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) expansionism, which has endangered the Taiwan Strait, the lifeline of global economy and trade. Using “language that Xi Jinping can understand,” he expressed Taiwan’s resolution to never succumb, garnering applause and invitations to meet from the U.S. political world.
Unfortunately, You’s first visit was scheduled for only February 1 and 2. The one and a half days was too short for him to fit in meetings.
Between May 13 and 17, You arrived again in D.C., this time spending most of his time on Capitol Hill. Over three days, he met with 34 heavyweight members of Congress and delivered remarks at the Hudson Institute.
He discussed a wide range of issues in-depth. The topics he covered can be summarized into three main aspects: security, economy and trade, and values between Taiwan and the U.S.
The dialogues he facilitated can be called historic.
The two trips You made to D.C. coincided with the cancellation of U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s trip to Beijing due to rising tensions surrounding the Chinese spy balloons that invaded the U.S. This created a twilight zone as the U.S. and China searched for another opportunity to reinitiate dialogue.
Other events that occurred during this time included the two transits Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen made through America, during which she met with U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and the presidents of South Korea and the Philippines, who both pledged to support Taiwan. Even at the G7 summit in Japan, she urged for assurance of safety across the Taiwan Strait.
Since joining the political world in the 1980s, You experienced the era in which Taiwan fought for democracy and freedom. He believes that if democracy and freedom do not advance, they regress.
The starkest example in the past 60 years is democracy’s ongoing regression in the world in the face of the CCP’s autocratic expansion. Taiwan is right there on the frontline of this change.
According to You, the world must jointly protect Taiwan, the only Sinophone country that is truly democratic and free. As China’s ultimate goal is to build a global autocratic empire, the existence of democratic Taiwan blocks Xi from acting on his ambition.
During the events in Washington, You demonstrated that as a “normalized” country, Taiwan is mature and ready. It is a success story of democracy and freedom. Not only is You a participant in these historic events, but he is also the best person to tell the story.
Not only is he familiar with Taiwanese politics, he is also well-versed in congressional dynamics. He was prepared during both of his visits, pointing out realities in recent trends in the U.S. that are not reflected in the interactions between Congress and the administration.
During a dialogue, You said while the U.S. government has always claimed that its policy towards Taiwan includes “one Act, Three Communiques, Six Assurances,” this is an outdated concept. According to You, in the present situation, the policies include five acts, Six Assurances, and Three Communiques.
The “five acts” mentioned by You include the Taiwan Relations Act, Taiwan Travel Act, Taiwan Allies International Protection and Enhancement Initiative Act, Taiwan Assurance Act of 2020, and the Taiwan Policy Act of 2022.
You’s argument is that the Taiwan-related laws the U.S. administration must follow is no longer just limited to the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act. Between 2018 and 2022, four other acts containing “Taiwan” in their names have been passed, and they must be acknowledged.
Meanwhile, the Six Assurances are no longer just talk; they now have a legal basis and are superior to the Three Communiques. From the perspective of democratic countries that must rule according to law, You reminded the U.S. government that it must follow this trend. It is time for the government spokesperson to change the rhetoric and acknowledge acts that were passed in Congress with bilateral consensus and signed by the president.
You’s honest remarks left an impression within D.C.’s political world. The acts indicate the direction in which the U.S. is adjusting its policies towards Taiwan.
He also mentioned in the U.S. that he believes “normalization” is a rule of the universe. The abnormal treatment Taiwan receives from the world because of the CCP’s bullying will not last. Normal Taiwan-U.S. relations are within reach.
Sam Brownback, former U.S. Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom, said he was glad You visited and condemned China’s violence, a statement that showed that the U.S. is standing strong and supporting Taiwan. Renowned human rights activist and U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom Commissioner Frank Wolf also told You in person that he should invite all U.S. congressional members to Taiwan rather than just a few because they should see the country firsthand.
On this most recent trip, You was even more insistent, inviting congressional members to attend the IRF Summit in Taiwan in September. Many political leaders in the U.S. look forward to showing their determination to fight for democracy and freedom in Taiwan.
In addition to an invitation, You also brought a special present: a work of calligraphy written by him called, “Democracy Victorious.” As one of over 100 people officially “sanctioned” by the CCP, he gifted the work to others who are also sanctioned, including former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Rep. Chris Smith (R-N.J.), Family Research Council President Tony Perkins, former NBA player Enes Kanter Freedom, Human Rights Watch China Director Dr. Sophie Richardson, and IRF Secretariat President Nadine Maenza.
In total, there are 60 Americans on the CCP’s sanction list. You, along with the others, prepared to establish a global pro-democracy and anti-autocracy alliance called “Sanctioned by the CCP” to celebrate the “badge of honor” they share.
You met with the Congressional-Executive Commission on China as well as the newly established Select Committee on CCP, both of which have taken active measures against China’s violent rule. After a tour of the Holocaust Memorial Museum, You told a reporter, “The Holocaust is not just history; it is also an ongoing reality.”
He said the history of the Holocaust is tied to Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany’s crimes; meanwhile, Xi Jinping enslaves his own people. The act of removing people’s organs while they are alive is so barbaric that it is worse than robbery or murder. It is a form of national-level terrorism.
China is an unjust autocracy that is threatening Taiwan, a free and democratic country. During his recent trip, You repeatedly cited Micah 6:8 from the Bible, “Do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with God,” to tell those in D.C. that the world cannot do without leadership of the U.S. in the future.
“For democracy to be victorious, there must be the U.S.” This is the only way human civilization will not be devoured by the CCP’s barbarism — and watching over Taiwan is equivalent to protecting the world.
Dr. Sen-Hong Yang is senior advisor to Speaker You Si-kun of Taiwan Legislative Yuan and president of Taiwan Association for China Human Rights.
Rev. Bob Fu, Ph.D. is Senior Fellow for International Religious Freedom at Family Research Council.