The Chinese Communist Party has secured a strong reputation among many of the world’s smaller nations and the bigger nations. Defying the Chinese Communist Party means risking a punishing response. Like what Australians had to face when they called an investigation into the origins of the Coronavirus, trying to protect the integrity of their political system. The Lithuanians also got their lesson when they tried establishing friendly relations with Taiwan. In both cases, retaliatory trade measures and diplomatic histrionics followed, causing repercussions.
In their attempt to form friendly relations with Taiwan, the Lithuanians welcomed the “Taiwanese Representative Office” in Vilnius. The Chinese moved to downgrade its political ties with Lithuania. That’s when the US stepped in, and the State Department Officials rushed to rescue the Lithuanian counterparts in the official opening. A senior officer from the US was sent to Vilnius. At the same time, the foreign minister from Lithuania, Gabrielius Landsbergis, visited Washington for a meeting with Wendy Sherman, the Deputy Secretary of the State. The whole purpose of this flurry of meetings was to expand ties with the democracies in the Indo-Pacific region.
The whole purpose of the US’s interference was to show all other small nations like Lithuania that attempts of defiance for Beijing and supporting Taiwan will be backed with support from Washington. Considering Beijing’s intimidation over countries with lesser clout than the United States, the message was essential to be given, considering how it has isolated Taipei with such success on a global stage. The Administration’s steps here are all inconsistent with its democracy agenda. As Landsbergis visited Washington and met with Sherman, the state pulled out a complete list of the participants for the December Democracy Summit, which included Taiwan. Though there is plenty to question the Administration regarding their approach to handling the China Challenge, its handling of Lithuania’s growing ties with Taiwan sets a worthwhile standard.