Balancing Assurances and Threats in the Case of Taiwan: A conversation with Bonnie Glaser, Jessica Chen Weiss, and Thomas Christensen

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This podcast episode is a joint and cross-over episode between the CSIS ChinaPower Podcast and the German Marshall Fund’s China Global Podcast. We are joined by Bonnie Glaser, Jessica Chen Weiss, and Thomas Christensen to discuss their recently released article titled “Taiwan and the True Sources of Deterrence.” The authors underline the article’s key point, that assurances, alongside threats, are an integral part of effective deterrence. They emphasize that in order for deterrence to work, the threat of punishment must be not only credible but also conditional. Finally, the authors outline what actions each of the three actors- the U.S., China, and Taiwan- should take to effectively convey assurances to one another.

Ms. Bonnie Glaser is the managing director of the German Marshall Fund’s Indo-Pacific program. She is also a nonresident fellow with the Lowy Institute in Sydney, Australia, and a senior associate with the Pacific Forum. She was previously senior adviser for Asia and the director of the China Power Project at CSIS. Ms. Glaser has worked at the intersection of Asia-Pacific geopolitics and U.S. policy for more than three decades.

Dr. Jessica Chen Weiss is a professor for China and Asia-Pacific Studies in the Department of Government at Cornell University. She was previously an assistant professor at Yale University and founded the Forum for American/Chinese Exchange at Stanford University. Formerly, Dr. Weiss served as senior advisor to the Secretary’s Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. State Department on a Council on Foreign Relations Fellowship for Tenured International Relations Scholars.

Dr. Thomas Christensen is a professor of Public and International Affairs and Director of the China and World Program at Columbia University. Prior to this, he served as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asian and Pacific Affairs with responsibility for relations with China, Taiwan, and Mongolia. His research and teaching focus is on China’s foreign relations, the international relations of East Asia, and international security.

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Bonny Lin
Director, China Power Project and Senior Fellow, Asian Security