Democracy protests throughout China have been regularly making international news. Taiwan, a nearby island off the coast, plays a key role on what could be the tipping point of conflict between the U.S. and China. These protests are creating more tension between the renegade republic island and mainland with Taiwan’s presidential election coming up next year. A gray zone currently exists between the island and their fate, with China chomping at the bit to reunify it with the mainland despite the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act. This act, signed by Washington, calls for the island’s future to be determined by peaceful means and to provide Taipei with defense weapons.