Only when there is that necessary mutual trust, not distrust or mistrust, can there be permanent peace. Domestic peace is like that between spouses. If they must constantly rely on the police to resolve their disputes, they should consider divorce. Neither is the USA a "police." It's merely a foreign superpower having the weapons of mass destruction to impose its will on others. As separate nations, China and the USA of course have fundamentally different national interests. As a result, the USA is out there not to help but to limit China. But, Taiwan once reunited would become an integral part of its (Taiwan's) own China. Because of this, while there was since the Korean War(1950) a transient renewed U.S. -Taipei military tie (up to 1985 after the late President Chiang Chin-kuo had asked them to please leave) to safeguard their mutual interests; the moment a peaceful reunification is possible or has been realized, there can be no further Taiwan-USA military ties to threaten China's own independence, or threaten other nations contrary to what China wants. Otherwise, it's like having to let American troops station on Chinese soil to spy on or control China. Such a relationship is colonial, no longer of mutual benefit but to benefit only that foreign power. Those advocating a closer Taiwan-U.S.A. military link in the future have not properly placed their trust in peaceful reunification and could sabotage the peace process. Why? Because at this time they threaten Chinese mainland.
To be a force serving a foreign interest against one's own nation is really treason. Even though often there is co-operation with foreign powers against one's own nation, it's for mutual benefit without undermining one's own national sovereignty. But, once it's done for that foreign power to control or take over one's own country, it's treason, a total sell-out for sure. In that event, a civil war would be inevitable. Trying to get the U.S.A. to maintain peace only gets the exactly opposite tragic result. For China right now, no U.S.A., no civil war.
For these and other reasons, whatever future bilateral military relationships there may be betwen Taipei and the USA henceforth must be gradually within what all of China, including mainland would want or could tolerate. In the context of a peaceful reunificatoin, this is not yielding to Peking, but to recognize China or Taiwan being not a part of the U.S.A. or U.S.A. colony.*
When Taiwan can keep its own armed forces after reunification, naturally they should become a self-defence force for Taiwan against only foreign invasions, no longer against the mainland which by then would have constitutionally become an integral part of the "motherland" for the Chinese on Taiwan. Actually, even right now, that's what all patriotic Chinese people think. That's the real underlying great moving force for a peaceful reunification: We are all Chinese. Hence, we want to re-unite and China including mainland is our motherland.
Another thing to note is that distinct differences exist between China and the USA, and therefore Taiwan and the USA. Some think that they can live better in the USA than in China. That's true not even for a few specially privileged, much less for the masses. We are unequal. If they don't consider themselves a superior race, they are at least the "masters," not us.
In sharp contrast, certainly when talking peace with mainland, there is no need to talk about "equality:" We are all equal as Chinese. That's something the Chinese would never truly achieve within the U.S.A. Yeah, Taiwan as a territory would enjoy equality, not its people. Just look at Hawaii. Where are its natives now? Still kings and queens, or "all but disappeared?" Read your San Ming Tsu Yi.
When peace is at hand for Taiwan to get all what its people want, those failing to seize it are both irresponsible and incompetent. Don't think that those crying wolf, singing anti-communist songs are heroes of the society. It really depends on when and for what purpose they do their act. If the communists are a threat to people's lives and freedom, they serve a positive purpose. But when a golden egg is there for the take, still condemning that goose willing to let you have it sounds stupid to me.
*After reunification, sino-USA relationship would improve not just because there is no longer this Taiwan issue but also that a stronger China means a less hegemonic USA. Since China would never be a nation of aggression, the USA would have no reason to fear. However, once China is strong enough not to be easily bullied, the USA would pragmatically seek a better relation: nothing to gain by hostile means anyway. This is similar to the situation with the USA. I assure you, if the latter is not militarily so strong as it is now, it wouldn't have as many friends as it enjoys today.
August 2004 additions at another site: