Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy said China could invade Taiwan without major consequences from the U.S. once he has hypothetically attained the nation’s “semiconductor independence” in 2028.
Semiconductor independence: In an interview with conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt, Ramaswamy stressed the importance of semiconductors and why the U.S. should take aggressive action until the nation is able to produce its own. Ramaswamy noted that China would hypothetically not take the risk of aggressing towards Taiwan for his term “if we show we’re serious about [semiconductor independence].”
“The truth of the matter is there are two reasons why China wants to annex Taiwan. One is to squat on the semiconductor supply chain so they can exert leverage over the United States of America. That’s not happening on my watch. I’d take a firm position on that.
“But the second reason why is that they have unfinished nationalistic business dating back to their civil war in 1949. And if that’s the sole basis for Xi Jinping going after Taiwan after we have semiconductor independence, then you know what? I am not going to send our sons and daughters to die over that conflict. And that’s consistent with my position on Ukraine as well.”
“Strategic ambiguity to strategic clarity”: Ramaswamy thinks that China wants to forcibly annex Taiwan before 2049, which he notes is “the hundred-year anniversary of the Chinese civil war when Chiang Kai-shek left.” The candidate believes that Chinese President Xi Jinping’s “rush to do it before 2028 is going to change” if he becomes the next U.S. president because he will move “from strategic ambiguity to strategic clarity.”
“What’s clear to me is that you are saying ‘I will go to war, including attacking the Chinese mainland, if you attack before semiconductor independence. And afterwards, you can have Taiwan. So if you just wait until 2029, you may have Taiwan,’” Hewitt clarified with Ramaswamy.
“I’m choosing my words very carefully right now,” Ramaswamy replied.
“I’m being very clear: Xi Jinping should not mess with Taiwan until we have achieved semiconductor independence, until the end of my first term when I will lead us there. And after that, our commitments to Taiwan, our commitments to be willing to go to military conflict, will change after that, because that’s rationally in our self-interest. That is honest. That is true, and that is credible.”
While Taiwan currently maintains its own government, Beijing has claimed sovereignty over the island since the end of the Chinese Civil War in 1949. Xi has vowed to reunify Taiwan with China using military force if necessary. The U.S., which has close ties with Taipei, acknowledges Beijing’s claim while considering Taiwan’s sovereignty unsettled.
About Ramaswamy: Ramaswamy was born to Indian immigrant parents in Cincinnati. He received his education at Yale and Harvard before later finding success as a biotech entrepreneur. Ramaswamy’s campaign is focused on restoring the “national identity in America” and rejecting the “poison of wokeism, climatism, transgenderism and COVIDism.”