Biden takes advantage of Nantucket as China targets Taiwan
Nantucket is not Taiwan.
But it is an island. And like Taiwan, it sits off the coast of a large landmass.
In the case of Taiwan, the land mass happens to be China. For Nantucket, it is Massachusetts.
President Joe Biden has spent Thanksgiving in Nantucket since the 1970s. This year is no different, and he and his family are on the island for the holidays.
His counterpart, Chinese President Xi Jinping, doesn’t have an island like Joe’s, which is one of the reasons he wants to invade Taiwan. It is a case of island envy.
Every president, even a communist / capitalist / dictator like Xi, needs an island getaway. The pressure of work makes spending time on an island a restorative necessity.
No man is an island, and no island is a man, except of course the British Isle of Man in the Irish Sea. But this is another story.
An island vacation can give a president the opportunity to put an ocean between him and the people he claims to love, even if they pay for it.
You could go back to President Franklin D. Roosevelt, who spent quality time in his summer home on Campobello Island in New Brunswick, Canada, or the Kennedys, who had the island resort at Hyannis and a place on Squaw Island. .
Former presidents also have to visit an island, which is why Barack Obama hangs out in his secluded 30-acre estate near Martha’s Vineyard.
Even the fallen candidates love island life. John Kerry, who was defeated as president in 2004, also has his place on Martha’s Vineyard.
In an island hopping or island shopping event, Kerry moved to the Nantucket Winery. He can now spend the Thanksgiving holidays with the two presidents – Obama, who appointed him secretary of state, and Biden, who appointed him climate czar.
The islands are important. Only in the case of China, the island Xi wants has to be bigger than Nantucket. It’s a question of appearances.
If China is to overtake the United States as the world’s largest military and economic superpower, then it behooves China to have a retreat island larger than Nantucket or Martha’s Vineyard. With more missiles too.
All kidding aside, China covets Taiwan, claiming it wants to reunite the island, even though it has never officially been part of China.
Taiwan is made up of people whose ancestors fled the horrors of Communist China. And while China may want Taiwan, Taiwan doesn’t want China.
Apart from the poor North Koreans, no one flees to China; they are fleeing China.
The island of Taiwan rose to prominence after the Chinese Civil War (1936-1949) when the Communists, led by Mao Zedong, defeated the nationalists under General Chiang Kai-shek. Army. Chiang, with the remnants of his defeated army, fled to Taiwan and established the Republic of China in Taiwan.
Although Chiang was a despot who oppressed the local population, the country turned towards democracy after his death in 1975.
Taiwan is now the open democracy that Communist China was meant to be when the West opened its doors to it.
In fact, Taiwan, a nation of about 24 million people, is an economic powerhouse with a powerful army.
It is the world’s largest producer of electronic chips essential to the operation of computers, cell phones, satellites, cars, airplanes, washing machines and other devices.
It is also of strategic importance as it hinders Chinese expansion and the takeover of vital sea lanes in the South China Sea.
China is the bully on the block. And, despite US support for Taiwan, China is threatening to attack.
So maybe it’s time to turn the tide and Taiwan threatens to invade China and not the other way around.
Don’t smile. It almost happened once. It was in 1950, when Mao sent an army to North Korea to attack American forces during the Korean War. The United States and its South Korean allies had chased the invading North Korean army to the Chinese border.
There were cries of “Unleash Chiang”, which meant approving plans for the nationalist leader to launch a diversionary attack on mainland China from Taiwan.
This does not happen. Maybe now we should sing “Free Joe”.
Peter Lucas is a veteran political journalist and columnist from Massachusetts.