Suddenly, China has violated the status quo! It took only a few years for American officials to say it, but at last someone, even though a mere assistant secretary, has at last publicly stated that China’s missiles and military build-up have altered the status quo in the Taiwan Straits:

A senior US defense official has accused China of changing the “status quo” in the Taiwan Strait by its missile buildup aimed at Taiwan, a situation that is forcing Washington to devise new ways to deal with the danger of a Chinese attack on Taiwan.

The official, Peter Rodman, the assistant secretary of defense for international security affairs, also pointed out that the US has developed improved defense relationships with a horseshoe-shaped ring of Asian nations around China that might come into play if China attacks Taiwan.

He made his comments in testimony at a hearing on China’s military modernization conducted by the US Economic and Security Review Commission, a congressionally established investigative body, in Washington on Thursday.

I wonder if this has anything to do with the NUC affair that brought high-ranking US officials to Taipei so that the DPP could talk directly to them. A fortunate by-product of the NUC “abolition?” In the meantime we can all look forward to a spate of Chen-is-crazed headlines to offset this one, like: “Chen Puts Socks on Left Foot First, Threatens Balance in Straits.”