(by College of International Affairs)
On June 17, General John R. Allen, President of U.S.-based Brookings Institution (BI), visited the Republic of China (Taiwan) in his current capacity for the very first time and shared his observations on the political and military configurations of East Asia in the face of rising tensions between Washington and Beijing.
General Allen attended an international conference on “The Risks to the Asian Peace: Avoiding Paths to Great Power War” at Palais de Chine Hotel, Taipei City, co-organized by College of International Affairs (CIA) at National Chengchi University (NCCU) and BI’s Center for East Asia Policy Studies (CEAP). He and CIA Dean Roberto Chyou (邱稔壤) delivered opening remarks respectively, followed by the keynote address by R.O.C. Foreign Minister Joseph Wu (吳釗燮), who was a research fellow at NCCU’s Institute of International Relations for more than a decade. Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Limasene Teatu also attended.
CEAP Senior Research Fellow and former American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Chairman Richard C. Bush gave his framing remarks supposed to be delivered by BI Vice President Bruce Jones who at the last minute was unable to join the conference due to an emergency. He stressed the importance of viewing contemporary Washington-Beijing interaction as a non-zero sum game and of understanding that there would be no winner in a war between Washington and Beijing.
In addition to four discussion sessions moderated separately by Mireya Solís (CEAP Director), Richard C. Bush, Bih-jaw Lin (林碧炤) (former Secretary-General of the Office of the R.O.C. President and now a professor emeritus at NCCU Department of Diplomacy), and Ryan Hass (Rubenstein Fellow in BI’s Foreign Policy Program), General Allen and Ambassador Andrew L. Y. Hsia (夏立言), Chairman of the Taiwan-based Association of Foreign Relations, had an short but insightful conversation at the lunch time. A retired 4-star general of U.S. Marine Corps, General Allen was particularly worried about the current situation in the South China Sea. He believed miscalculation and misjudgment in the area could trigger a catastrophic armed conflict that would impact a couple of generations in the region of East Asia.
Unable to participate in this conference, NCCU President Min-Cheng Kuo (郭明政) expressed his welcome to the BI delegation and local and international experts who expressed their views in the sessions. He hoped there would be more opportunities of mutual cooperation and exchange between NCCU and BI, one of the top think tanks in the world.
Funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mainland Affairs Council, and NCCU, the conference on “The Risks to the Asian Peace” was co-organized by CIA’s Department of Diplomacy, Graduate Institute of East Asian Studies, and International Master’s Program in International Studies (IMPIS).