Travel in the Face of Threats

Late Tuesday evening, local time, US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi landed in Taiwan (also known as the Republic of China) despite multiple warnings from the government in mainland China against the visit. Before her trip, the Chinese said they would shoot down her plane if it entered their airspace. That’s a severe warning…a threat to the United States of America. Murdering the Speaker of the US House of Representatives would be considered an act of war.

A significant reason for the heated Chinese response is that Mrs. Pelosi is second in line for the US presidency. She has been the most senior US official to visit the nation since Newt Gingrich’s visit in 1997.


Pelosi on the ground in Taiwan. Image Credit:

After landing at Songshan Airport a little before 11:00 PM, the Speaker was greeted by Taiwanese Foreign Minister Joseph Wu and staff members from the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT). AIT functions as the de facto US embassy in Taipei.