Photo of USTDC courtesy of Les Duffin

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Shanghai Communique

I have written a few articles in the past that were somewhat critical of President Carter's decision to withdraw US military forces from Taiwan and to close our embassy there.  Like many others, I felt that Carter deserted the good people of Taiwan in favor of their communist neighbor.

But diplomacy is never quite that clear-cut.  To be fair, Carter only executed the provisions of the Shanghai Communique that were agreed to during the Nixon administration several years earlier.    From Nixon, through Ford, and to Carter, it was just a matter of time.

This Associated Press article from the Sarasota (Florida) Herald-Tribune of February 28, 1972, describes the uncertainty in the aftermath of the signing.  One fear was that the US agreement to close all "military installations" could possibly include the US Taiwan Defense Command.

The Command held its final flag retreat ceremony during the afternoon of April 26, 1979, just over four months after the withdrawal announcementRADM Lindner, Commander of the US Taiwan Defense Command, was the last American military officer to depart Taiwan.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

This decision was one of the biggest mistakes ever made. Appeasing communists is always a losing game. I guess we never figured this out at the end of the Korean War.