Nancy Pelosi Takes a Stand

While this newsletter is about China, I’m not forgetting that the United States won a great victory this weekend. We finally tracked down and killed Ayman al-Zawahiri, the leader of al Qaeda and one of the masterminds of 9/11. Steve Hayes, Klon Kitchen, and I will be on Dispatch Live tonight to talk about Zawahiri, China, and Russia. 

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The plane carrying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi touches down in Taipei, Taiwan.(Photo by Annabelle Chih/Getty Images)

There is an admirable consistency to Nancy’s Pelosi’s long opposition to the communist Chinese regime. Thirty-one years ago Pelosi stood alongside representatives Ben Jones and John Miller in the heart of Tiananmen Square and unfurled a banner that read, “To those who died for Democracy in China.” Police responded immediately, “roughing up” journalists who covered the moment and chasing Pelosi and her colleagues out of the square.

She has confronted Chinese leaders directly about the plight of political prisoners. She has opposed Chinese efforts to host the Olympic Games. She has taken House members to Tibet. And today she became the highest-ranking U.S. politician to visit Taiwan since then-Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich visited in 1997. And she did it in spite of explicit Chinese threats against her flight, in spite of explicit Chinese warnings of military escalation, and in spite of administration misgivings. 

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