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The Diplomacy of MigrationTransnational Lives and the Making of U.S.-Chinese Relations in the Cold War$
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Meredith Oyen

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9781501700149

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501700149.001.0001

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Visa Diplomacy

Visa Diplomacy

The Taiwan Independence Movement and Changing U.S.-Chinese Relations

(p.215) Chapter 8 Visa Diplomacy
The Diplomacy of Migration

Meredith Oyen

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines “visa diplomacy” and immigration policy changes in the 1960s in relation to the Taiwan independence movement. In line with its policies of the previous two decades for new migration from Taiwan, the Nationalist government tried to control who traveled to the United States and monitor what they did there. The United States, meanwhile, could not afford to acquiesce to Taipei's every military or defensive demand but made visa decisions in such a way as to show its support for the struggling government. This chapter first considers the case of Taiwan independence activist Thomas Liao (Liao Wenyi), who was denied a visa by the Kennedy administration in 1961. It then discusses the Hart-Celler Act of 1965 and its impact on Chinese immigration to the United States. It also looks at the case of Peng Ming-min to highlight the limits of visa diplomacy and the implications of visa diplomacy for U.S.-China relations.

Keywords:   visa diplomacy, immigration policy, Taiwan, United States, Thomas Liao, Hart-Celler Act, immigration, Peng Ming-min, U.S.-China relations, Taiwan independence movement

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