The U.S.'s New Stance on China...
President Bush said the U.S. would defend Taiwan if China attacked. On Apr. 24, the White House approved the biggest arms sale package to Taiwan in 12 years.
The Bush Administration has made it clear that it regards China as a strategic rival, rather than a partner, and that ties with Japan take precedence in Asia
Top U.S. officials are visiting neighbors such as Japan, Russia, India, and Korea to seek cooperation on strategic missile defense, fostering Beijing's fear that it is being "contained."
The White House said any further contacts between the U.S. and Chinese militaries will be only on a case-by-case basis.
Just five weeks after the EP-3 incident, the U.S. resumed reconnaissance flights off China's coast.
...and How Beijing Could Respond
To counter a U.S. strategic missile shield, China could build 200 more intercontinental ballistic missiles within two years and develop multiple warheads.
The Chinese could hurt the island's economy by threatening to blockade its ports or disrupt shipping in the Taiwan Strait, scaring away investors.
It could resume weapons sales to Iraq, Iran, and other nations the U.S. is trying to isolate.
Beijing could retaliate against U.S. companies, building business pressure against Bush's policies.