President Joe Biden sat down with Scott Pelley for a Sunday interview on CBS’s “60 Minutes.” During that interview, Pelley broached the subject of Taiwan and any potential defense of the island if China was to attack.
“U.S. policy since 1979 has been to recognize Taiwan as part of China but remains silent on whether the U.S. military would defend the democratic government there. This is among the places where our interview runs into controversy. What should Chinese President Xi know about your commitment to Taiwan?” Pelley asked, later Pelley clarified, asking “But would U.S. Forces defend the island?”
Biden stated that in the event of an “unprecedented attack,” the United States would defend Taiwan.
The White House later walked back the statement, stating that “U.S. policy has not changed. Officially, the U.S. will not say whether American forces would defend Taiwan. But the commander-in-chief had a view of his own.”