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03/07/2002

The U.S. and Asia, Part II

Just a few more thoughts, mostly from the local press in Taiwan,
as gleaned during my trip there the week that President Bush was
also touring Japan, South Korea and China.

---

[From Taiwan News]

Taiwan’s Vice President Annette Lu, commenting on Beijing’s
“One China” norm – under which the mainland claims Taiwan as
a province – called it “insane.”

“Yes, it is just like ‘there is only one U.S., one United Kingdom,
or one Japan in the world.’ No one would object to it. But no
American, British, or Japanese would keep saying that,” Lu said,
adding, “If someone always repeats this, there should be two
reasons. Reason 1: That man is insane. Reason 2: The fact is not
so, and therefore it has to be emphasized again and again until
other people are forced to accept it.”

[Editorial in The China Post of Taiwan]

Commenting on Chinese President Jiang Zemin’s same old, same
old on the “Taiwan question,” specifically his remark, “In my
meeting with President Bush, I have elaborated the Chinese
government’s basic position of peaceful reunification and one
country, two systems, for the solution of the Taiwan question.”

China Post: “Nothing new here…and that should actually
encourage Taiwan’s 23 million freedom-loving citizens. Still
sticking in the craw of our sensibilities like aluminum foil
grinding against dental fillings are loaded presuppositions like
‘Chinese government,’ ‘reunification,’ and ‘one country, two
systems.’

“The first, ‘Chinese government,’ is none other than the
dictatorial one-party communist leadership in Beijing, which at
last count exercised NO political or legal authority over the
goings-on here in Taiwan. So Taiwan’s people, accustomed to
16 years and counting of vibrant multiparty democracy are going
to suddenly roll over and let Beijing determine their collective
fate? Next question please.

“ ‘Reunification’ is a dicier word here. For those favoring
eventual unity with the mainland, the word may pass unnoticed.
But independence advocates might very well query how
something which was never fully unified can be ‘re’-unified.

“Lastly, one need only look to the trading entrepot and political
football that is Hong Kong to see the folly in the institution of
‘one country, two systems,’ Tung Chee-hwa was handpicked to
‘govern’ …with (a) Potemkinesque veneer of democracy…
Hong Kong is currently enduring its worst postwar recession and
property values, once challenging the heights of the famed
Victoria Peak, have tanked.”

[From Liu Kuan-teh, a Taipei-based political commentator,
Taipei Times]

“The main Chinese military threat comes from over 400 short,
medium and long-range missiles now deployed in areas directly
across the Strait from Taiwan…

“In the short term, with their naval, air combat and amphibious
lift capabilities, China cannot mount a successful invasion of
Taiwan. The US Department of Defense and the CIA, however,
both pointed out that Beijing will enjoy a tremendous military
advantage over Taiwan by the year 2010. Last year Beijing
issued a White Paper (ed. covered in “Hott Spotts,” see archives),
which detailed the timing and conditions for an invasion of
Taiwan. While the White Paper remains purely self-serving,
Taipei must actively consider whether the leadership in Beijing is
willing to initiate military action for the sake of unity.”

[Editorial in China Post]

“The Chinese Communist Party propaganda factory has been
churning out anti-Yankee vitriol to 1.3 billion gullible auditors
eager to hear more of the foreign imperialist devil’s dastardly
deeds against their motherland.

“…What is startling is the near total Gepetto-like control that the
Chinese government has over the actions of its people. The other
four-fifths of the world’s population can safely bet that when
radical jingoist students trashed U.S. sovereign territory at its
embassy and consulates across China after Wang went bang last
year, their fanatical reaction had the full backing, if not the
impliant (sic) orders, of the Chinese Communist Party
leadership.”

[Opinion of mainland Chinese scholar, Zhang Guoqing, on the
new U.S. military presence in Central and South Asia, post-9/11,
as reported by Henry Chu in the Los Angeles Times.]

“Under the banner of counter-terrorism, it can strike at will at
those with differing views; it can loiter about and not leave
Afghanistan or other strategically important areas; it can
undercut the United Nations; it can use opposing terrorism as a
bargaining chip in bilateral relations with other countries.”

[Ed. Too bad.]

[U.S. Senator Jesse Helms, in a Washington Times op-ed piece.]

“Clearly, mere tactical political maneuvers must neither mislead,
let alone interest, the U.S. What is of interest must be Beijing’s
strategic intentions regarding Taiwan. Every effort should be
made to prevent Beijing’s achieving them. These key questions
cry out for answers: Has Beijing renounced the use of force
against Taiwan? Has Beijing reversed its military buildup, so
clearly aimed at Taiwan?

“Of course not. Until and unless the answers are demonstrably
honest in the affirmative, the U.S. must remain steadfast about
our intent to defend Taiwan.

“…This, coupled with a forceful joint U.S.-Taiwan military
posture, will help create deterrence in the Taiwan Strait – not
maintaining the U.S. ‘relationship’ with the communists in
Beijing.”

[Lastly, President George W. Bush, at Qinghua University in
Beijing.]

“Life in America shows that liberty, paired with law, is not to be
feared. In a free society, diversity is not disorder. Debate is not
strife. And dissent is not revolution. A free society trusts its
citizens to seek greatness in themselves and their country.”

---

Hott Spotts will return next week.

Brian Trumbore



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Hot Spots

03/07/2002

The U.S. and Asia, Part II

Just a few more thoughts, mostly from the local press in Taiwan,
as gleaned during my trip there the week that President Bush was
also touring Japan, South Korea and China.

---

[From Taiwan News]

Taiwan’s Vice President Annette Lu, commenting on Beijing’s
“One China” norm – under which the mainland claims Taiwan as
a province – called it “insane.”

“Yes, it is just like ‘there is only one U.S., one United Kingdom,
or one Japan in the world.’ No one would object to it. But no
American, British, or Japanese would keep saying that,” Lu said,
adding, “If someone always repeats this, there should be two
reasons. Reason 1: That man is insane. Reason 2: The fact is not
so, and therefore it has to be emphasized again and again until
other people are forced to accept it.”

[Editorial in The China Post of Taiwan]

Commenting on Chinese President Jiang Zemin’s same old, same
old on the “Taiwan question,” specifically his remark, “In my
meeting with President Bush, I have elaborated the Chinese
government’s basic position of peaceful reunification and one
country, two systems, for the solution of the Taiwan question.”

China Post: “Nothing new here…and that should actually
encourage Taiwan’s 23 million freedom-loving citizens. Still
sticking in the craw of our sensibilities like aluminum foil
grinding against dental fillings are loaded presuppositions like
‘Chinese government,’ ‘reunification,’ and ‘one country, two
systems.’

“The first, ‘Chinese government,’ is none other than the
dictatorial one-party communist leadership in Beijing, which at
last count exercised NO political or legal authority over the
goings-on here in Taiwan. So Taiwan’s people, accustomed to
16 years and counting of vibrant multiparty democracy are going
to suddenly roll over and let Beijing determine their collective
fate? Next question please.

“ ‘Reunification’ is a dicier word here. For those favoring
eventual unity with the mainland, the word may pass unnoticed.
But independence advocates might very well query how
something which was never fully unified can be ‘re’-unified.

“Lastly, one need only look to the trading entrepot and political
football that is Hong Kong to see the folly in the institution of
‘one country, two systems,’ Tung Chee-hwa was handpicked to
‘govern’ …with (a) Potemkinesque veneer of democracy…
Hong Kong is currently enduring its worst postwar recession and
property values, once challenging the heights of the famed
Victoria Peak, have tanked.”

[From Liu Kuan-teh, a Taipei-based political commentator,
Taipei Times]

“The main Chinese military threat comes from over 400 short,
medium and long-range missiles now deployed in areas directly
across the Strait from Taiwan…

“In the short term, with their naval, air combat and amphibious
lift capabilities, China cannot mount a successful invasion of
Taiwan. The US Department of Defense and the CIA, however,
both pointed out that Beijing will enjoy a tremendous military
advantage over Taiwan by the year 2010. Last year Beijing
issued a White Paper (ed. covered in “Hott Spotts,” see archives),
which detailed the timing and conditions for an invasion of
Taiwan. While the White Paper remains purely self-serving,
Taipei must actively consider whether the leadership in Beijing is
willing to initiate military action for the sake of unity.”

[Editorial in China Post]

“The Chinese Communist Party propaganda factory has been
churning out anti-Yankee vitriol to 1.3 billion gullible auditors
eager to hear more of the foreign imperialist devil’s dastardly
deeds against their motherland.

“…What is startling is the near total Gepetto-like control that the
Chinese government has over the actions of its people. The other
four-fifths of the world’s population can safely bet that when
radical jingoist students trashed U.S. sovereign territory at its
embassy and consulates across China after Wang went bang last
year, their fanatical reaction had the full backing, if not the
impliant (sic) orders, of the Chinese Communist Party
leadership.”

[Opinion of mainland Chinese scholar, Zhang Guoqing, on the
new U.S. military presence in Central and South Asia, post-9/11,
as reported by Henry Chu in the Los Angeles Times.]

“Under the banner of counter-terrorism, it can strike at will at
those with differing views; it can loiter about and not leave
Afghanistan or other strategically important areas; it can
undercut the United Nations; it can use opposing terrorism as a
bargaining chip in bilateral relations with other countries.”

[Ed. Too bad.]

[U.S. Senator Jesse Helms, in a Washington Times op-ed piece.]

“Clearly, mere tactical political maneuvers must neither mislead,
let alone interest, the U.S. What is of interest must be Beijing’s
strategic intentions regarding Taiwan. Every effort should be
made to prevent Beijing’s achieving them. These key questions
cry out for answers: Has Beijing renounced the use of force
against Taiwan? Has Beijing reversed its military buildup, so
clearly aimed at Taiwan?

“Of course not. Until and unless the answers are demonstrably
honest in the affirmative, the U.S. must remain steadfast about
our intent to defend Taiwan.

“…This, coupled with a forceful joint U.S.-Taiwan military
posture, will help create deterrence in the Taiwan Strait – not
maintaining the U.S. ‘relationship’ with the communists in
Beijing.”

[Lastly, President George W. Bush, at Qinghua University in
Beijing.]

“Life in America shows that liberty, paired with law, is not to be
feared. In a free society, diversity is not disorder. Debate is not
strife. And dissent is not revolution. A free society trusts its
citizens to seek greatness in themselves and their country.”

---

Hott Spotts will return next week.

Brian Trumbore