Taiwan's Political Status: Historical Background and Ongoing Implications [November 3, 2009] [open pdf - 239KB]
"This report is intended as a background overview of the historical and political complexity associated with Taiwan's status in the world and its continuing policy ramifications. In brief, this report discusses the civil war on China in the 1940s that resulted in the victory of communist forces and the ROC government's flight to Taiwan; reviews the Taiwan government's continued recognition as the sole government of China by much of the world and the United States until 1979; and discusses the Taiwan government's eventual loss of diplomatic relations with the United States and with all but a handful of countries. The report further discusses how the United States handles its extensive ongoing economic and security interests in Taiwan in the absence of official relations, and places in context the recurring policy complications that these interests pose for U.S. relations with the PRC. This report lays out the background and framework that affect how U.S. relations with both Taiwan and China are conducted today. This report will not be updated, and readers wishing to follow current policy issues involving Taiwan and China should consult other regularly updated CRS reports. As of the date of this report, these include CRS Report R40493, Taiwan-U.S. Relations: Developments and Policy Implications; and CRS Report RL30957, Taiwan: Major U.S. Arms Sales Since 1990."
CRS Report for Congress, RS22388