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(Junius Griffin/Stars and Stripes)

Taipei International Airport, Taiwan, June 20, 1960: President Dwight D. Eisenhower waves farewell at Taipei International Airport after a two-day visit to Taiwan, during which he met with Taiwanese president Chiang Kai-shek. The two presidents and their wives worshipped together Sunday, June 19, 1960, in a small private chapel on Chiang’s estate, after which they held a brief business meeting before President Eisenhower left for Okinawa and Korea. Chiang and Eisenhower also met for two hours the day before. Eisenhower was the first president to publicly declare that the U.S. would defend the Republic of China (Taiwan) against aggression from mainland China. The Mutual Defense Treaty between the United States of America and Taiwan was signed on December 2, 1954, with both sides pledging to aid each other in the case of a military attack. A month later, in January 1955, the U.S. House and Senate passed the “Formosa Resolution,” granting Eisenhower the authority to use military force to defend Taiwan “as he deems necessary.” As of April 2020, Eisenhower is still the only sitting president to have visited Taiwan.


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