Comparisons between Ukraine and Taiwan were inevitable and the island’s leader, Tsai Ing-wen, has tried to capitalise on the crisis to gain support. American politicians have heeded her calls, President Joe Biden sending a team of one-time security and Asian affairs officials and then former secretary of state Mike Pompeo following. There have been assurances and promises, but it is wrong to contend that events in Europe bear similarity to an issue that is an internal Chinese matter. Abiding by agreements that there is only one China rather than provoking Beijing is the only sensible course. Beijing is trying to help mediate a peaceful resolution to Russia’s war in Ukraine, nations with which it has friendly terms. Nationalist voices on the mainland contend the time is ripe to act against Taiwan, but a peaceful reunification of what is perceived as a rebel province has always been the goal. Biden and Pompeo are trying to take political advantage of the Taiwan issue. The latter is believed to have presidential ambitions and during his tenure under former president Donald Trump, upturned long-standing American policy and intentionally pushed formal relations between Washington and Taipei closer. The Biden administration has adopted that approach; its unofficial delegation, which included ex-chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Michael Mullen, sent Tsai a message of American military support. But the hastily organised trip was also aimed at managing the potential diplomatic fallout of the visit by Pompeo, who is a private citizen and not Washington’s representative. US Secretary of State Antony Blinken pledged during a recent phone call with State Councillor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi to uphold the one-China policy. But the Biden administration also says it has a “rock solid” commitment to ensuring Taiwan’s security and has twice approved arms deals. The trips came in the same week as the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Shanghai Communique, the first of three agreements that normalised diplomatic relations between Beijing and Washington and in which the US acknowledged an “interest in a peaceful settlement of the Taiwan question by the Chinese themselves”. It is still a responsible position to take.