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Tensions rising between U.S. and China

President Joe Biden says the United States will use military force if China invades Taiwan.

WILLIAMSPORT, Pa. — Tensions between the United States and China have been rising recently. The latest disagreement came after President Joe Biden's comments Sunday night. 

In an interview on 60 Minutes, Biden was asked if the United States will defend Taiwan with military force if China decides to invade. In reply, the president said, "Yes, if, in fact, there was an unprecedented attack."

"A shooting war between China and the US could easily escalate way out of control beyond what anybody wants," said Dr. Ben Kantack.

Newswatch 16 stopped by Lycoming College in Williamsport to learn more about the tension in the Pacific. We sat down with Dr. Ben Kantack, a political science professor at the college. He says for years, the United States has taken a position of "strategic ambiguity" in regard to Taiwan.

"We respect China's One China policy. We regard China as the One China. Meaning mainland China as one, but we also acknowledge that Taiwan has the right to determine for itself how it governs itself," added Dr. Kantack.

According to Dr. Kantack, the United States has no binding obligation to defend Taiwan. If US troops did engage Chinese forces, then it may have a huge effect on our daily lives. Trade with the US's top goods supplier would likely halt.

"Everybody has sort of seen problems with supply chain due to the Russian and Ukrainian conflict, but imagine that ramped up a lot more. Things would get a lot more expensive, and it would become pricier to do a lot of things," he said.

Tensions between the two world superpowers have been growing for months now. With China calling House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's Taiwan visit and the United States $1,100,000,000 arms deal with the island nation provocative acts.

"When the US does something unusually friendly to Taiwan in China's eyes, then China will respond with some show of force militarily or diplomatically," said Kantack.

China has already begun to show force. Taiwan claims Chinese military aircraft have flown through its air space in recent weeks, only adding to the tension.

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