Authors

David J. Keegan

Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies
Photo of David J. Keegan

David J. Keegan is adjunct lecturer in the Chinese Studies Program at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, where he teaches a seminar on Taiwan and its relations with the United States and mainland China. He has also taught area studies courses on China, Northeast Asia, and the Pacific at the State Department Foreign Service Institute. holds a Ph.D. in Chinese History from the University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Keegan served as a Foreign Service Officer in the U.S. State Department for thirty years, specializing in China, Taiwan, and the Asia Pacific region.  Among his assignments, he served as Deputy Director of the American Institute in Taiwan and Deputy Chief of Mission and Chargé at the U.S. Embassy in New Zealand. Dr. Keegan also served as: Director of the Office of Taiwan Policy in the Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs.

Articles by David J. Keegan
Taiwan Navigates US-China Tensions as it Manages the Effects of COVID-19

Simmering tensions across the Taiwan Strait were a concern in May at the World Health Assembly meeting, along with President Tsai’s second inauguration, China’s National People’s Congress, and the 15th anniversary of the Anti-Secession Law. The beginning of Tsai’s second term was defined by Taiwan’s success in overcoming the health and economic impacts of COVID-19. Taiwan failed to win a seat at the World Health Assembly, but won unusually broad and public support from Washington and other typically silent partners. Taiwan offered assistance to victims of the Beijing’s National Security Law for Hong Kong, prompting Beijing to warn of Taiwan’s “black hand.” Taiwan’s ties with the US were showcased by the August visit of Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar to Taipei.

Elsewhere, seeking to jumpstart negotiations on a bilateral trade agreement with the US, Tsai announced that Taiwan will allow imports of US pork and beef. The Nationalist Party’s recent presidential candidate Han Kuo-yu was recalled as Kaohsiung mayor and replaced by DPP candidate Chen Chi-mai. Meanwhile, the new KMT leadership’s initiative to sever ties to the “1992 Consensus” provoked generational dissension and a sharp warning from Beijing. Lee Teng-hui was mourned at his death as a democratic hero.