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Nancy Pelosi's Taiwan Visit refers to tensions between China, Taiwan and the United States surrounding U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's visit to Taiwan, which began on August 2nd, 2022. The tensions are part of a larger ongoing conflict over Taiwan's independence from China, which existed for decades prior to the 2022 trip. The tensions and threats issued by China over the visit inspired discussions and memes on social media, including an influx of World War III memes.
Postponed April 2022 Visit
On April 6th, 2022, the media reported that U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was scheduled to visit Taiwan on April 9th following a visit to Japan. The trip would have marked the first time since 1997 when a high-ranking U.S. government official visited Taiwan, a partially recognized state in East Asia seen by China as its breakaway province.
The news was met with China warning the United States over the visit, saying that the country would "take strong measures" that would "severely impact Chinese-U.S. relations" should Pelosi visit Taiwan, demanding "immediate cancelation" of the visit.
August 2022 Visit
Starting in late July 2022, China resumed its criticism of the planned visit and issued more threats over it. On July 27th, media reported that China vowed "serious consequences" if Pelosi visited the island.
On July 27th, the media reported that the U.S. military was making plans in case Pelosi traveled to Taiwan. On July 29th, a Chinese top state-media commentator tweeted that China could shoot down Pelosi's plane if it flies to Taiwan (tweet removed by Twitter). On July 30th, Pelosi departed from San Francisco to Pacific Asia. On that day, China reported that it was conducting military exercises off its coast opposite Taiwan.
On July 31st, 2022, Nancy Pelosi tweeted about the government visit to several Asian countries without mentioning Taiwan. On August 2nd, 2022, a U.S. Air Force plane departed from Malaysia, heading for Taipei, Taiwan.
Later that day, Nancy Pelosi landed in Taipei, with multiple media outlets reporting on her arrival. Following the landing, Pelosi posted a tweet in which she voiced her "unwavering commitment to supporting Taiwan’s vibrant Democracy."
Nancy Pelosi's planned visit to Taiwan sparked discussions and memes online in late July and early August 2022. China's threats over Pelosi's planned visit sparked memes about the trip serving as a catalyst for WW3. Memes about Nancy Pelosi potentially profiting from market movements caused by her decisions due to her husband being a stock trader also trended on social media.
Nancy Pelosi's July 30th, 2022, flight to Pacific Asia was tracked by over 100,000 people on the flight tracking website FlightRadar24.
On August 2nd, over 300,000 people were reportedly tracking Nancy Pelosi's plane as it departed from Kuala Lumpur and headed for Taiwan, with the website going down due to an influx of visitors.
World War III Scare Memes
Reports of China threatening negative consequences for Taiwan and the United States over Nancy Pelosi's visit to the island sparked memes about the visit becoming a catalyst for World War III. For example, on July 29th, 2022, Twitter user @Fallen_x_King posted a Blinking White Guy meme that gained over 240 retweets and 2,000 likes in three days (shown below, left).
Insider Trading Memes
As Nancy Pelosi is married to Paul Pelosi, a stock trader who previously traded stocks of computer chip companies, and as Taiwan houses Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, the largest chip manufacturer in the world, memes about Nancy Pelosi profiting off her political decisions were posted online. For example, a July 31st, 2022, tweet by user @Veronic559122266 gained over 1,200 retweets and 9,100 likes in two days (shown below, left).
h2. Search Interest
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