Join us for this installment of our popular Chat & Chowder series, featuring Ryan Hass, Senior Fellow of the Foreign Policy Program, the Thornton China Center, and the Center for East Asia Policy Studies at the Brookings Institution, to discuss his new book, U.S.-Taiwan Relations: Will China’s Challenge Lead to a Crisis?.
Chat & Chowder programs are an excellent opportunity to engage with expert speakers and to network with other globally-oriented participants in an informal environment. Each event features a presentation, audience Q&A, dedicated time for networking, and (of course!) a selection of chowders and beverages.
Never attended Chat & Chowder before? No prior knowledge is required, and your first program is FREE. Because there is a limited number of free tickets, we appreciate your commitment to attend this program once you have registered.
Ryan Hass is a senior fellow and the Michael H. Armacost Chair in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings, where he holds a joint appointment to the John L. Thornton China Center and the Center for East Asia Policy Studies. He is also the Chen-Fu and Cecilia Yen Koo Chair in Taiwan Studies. He was part of the inaugural class of David M. Rubenstein fellows at Brookings, and is a nonresident affiliated fellow in the Paul Tsai China Center at Yale Law School. Hass focuses his research and analysis on enhancing policy development on the pressing political, economic, and security challenges facing the United States in East Asia.
From 2013 to 2017, Hass served as the director for China, Taiwan and Mongolia at the National Security Council (NSC) staff. In that role, he advised President Obama and senior White House officials on all aspects of U.S. policy toward China, Taiwan, and Mongolia, and coordinated the implementation of U.S. policy toward this region among U.S. government departments and agencies. He joined President Obama’s state visit delegations in Beijing and Washington respectively in 2014 and 2015, and the president’s delegation to Hangzhou, China, for the G-20 in 2016, and to Lima, Peru, for the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Leaders Meetings in 2016.
Prior to joining NSC, Hass served as a Foreign Service Officer in U.S. Embassy Beijing, where he earned the State Department Director General’s award for impact and originality in reporting, an award given annually to the officer whose reporting had the greatest impact on the formulation of U.S. foreign policy. Hass also served in Embassy Seoul and Embassy Ulaanbaatar, and domestically in the State Department Offices of Taiwan Coordination and Korean Affairs. Hass received multiple Superior Honor and Meritorious Honor commendations during his 15-year tenure in the Foreign Service.
Hass is the author of Stronger: Adapting America’s China Strategy in an Age of Competitive Interdependence (Yale University Press, 2021), a co-editor of Global China: Assessing China’s Growing Role in the World (Brookings Press, 2021), of the monograph The future of US policy toward China: Recommendations for the Biden administration (Brookings, 2020), and a co-author of U.S.-Taiwan Relations: Will China’s Challenge Lead to a Crisis? (Brookings Press, 2023). He also leads the Democracy in Asia project at the Brookings Institution and is co-chair of the international task force on Taiwan convened by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
Hass was born and raised in Washington state. He graduated from the University of Washington and attended the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies prior to joining the State Department.
Anxiety about China’s growing military capabilities to threaten Taiwan has induced alarm in Washington about whether the United States remains capable of deterring attempts to seize Taiwan by force. This alarm has fed American impulses to alter longstanding policy, and to increasingly view challenges confronting Taiwan through a military lens. While Taiwan clearly is under growing military threat, it also is facing a simultaneous and intensifying Chinese political campaign to wear down the will of the Taiwan people. This latter line of effort receives less attention, but left unaddressed, has the potential to do far more damage to American interests.
This book rightsizes the risks confronting Taiwan by taking a holistic view of China’s national ambitions and Taiwan’s role in them, China’s strategies for pursuing unification with Taiwan, and America’s most effective responses. Contrary to many other books on the market, the authors make the case for why conflict in the Taiwan Strait is not preordained, and in fact, it would be strategic folly for the United States to conclude that conflict is inescapable.
Hass, Glaser, and Bush argue that the center of gravity for determining the future of Taiwan is the will of Taiwan’s 23 million people. American policy should focus on their hopes and fears if the United States wishes to maintain influence over events in the Taiwan Strait. This calls for American resoluteness and steadiness of purpose in fortifying Taiwan’s economic dynamism, political autonomy, military preparedness, and dignity and respect on the world stage. Maintaining credible military deterrence is the minimum threshold, not the measure of success. U.S.-Taiwan Relations will be an invaluable resource for students, researchers, and journalists to understand this critical moment in U.S. foreign policy.
WorldBoston’s Chat & Chowder series features key authors on international affairs in an engaging setting. In addition to discussion of a featured book (usually sold at a significant discount), the program offers the opportunity for discussion among members and guests – and of course a selection of chowders and beverages. This Chat & Chowder will be hosted in-person (from 6:00 to 7:30PM ET) and live-streamed to Zoom (from 6:15 to 7:15 PM ET only).