Tue, Oct 14, 2003 - Page 8 News List

Letters:

AIT needs to revisit treaties

James Wang (王景弘) wrote a concise piece on the gross abuses by American Institute in Taiwan Director Douglas Paal under the Taiwan Relations Act (TRA) ("Paal doesn't understand the TRA," Oct. 8, page 8). The TRA did replace the Mutual Defense Treaty of 1954.

But Wang forgot to mention that Article 6 of the treaty provides for the "effective territorial control" of Taiwan by the Republic of China under the San Francisco Peace Treaty. George Yeh actually signed the Exchange of Notes for the defense treaty as well as John Foster Dulles.

It is of great historic significance that the grandfather of John Foster Dulles was officially hired by the Qing Dynasty in 1895 to surrender Formosa and the Pescadores to the Japanese. John Foster Dulles was the drafter of the Treaty of Shimonoseki. That 1895 peace treaty was correctly framed in accordance with the customary laws of war. There was absolutely no deceptive fraudulent transfer to Japan in 1895 by China.

The Japanese annexations of Manchuria and of the Mandated Territories, however, were outright theft and were invalidated by clauses in the San Francisco treaty. Unlike the Qing Dynasty surrender of Taiwan to Japan, the successor ROC and PRC have never legally perfected any title to regaining Taiwan and the Pescadores.

The ROC on Taiwan has been conducting the administrative authority of Taiwan under the San Francisco treaty. Paal would be wise to review the human rights clause in the TRA. The political status of the San Francisco treaty is not defined, so the "undefined" civil rights of the TRA are still applicable under the San Francisco treaty. If there are any questions, then the AIT director should see Article 9 of the 1898 Treaty of Paris.

From that clause is also derived the meaning of the TRA human rights clause. From the then "undefined political and civil rights" of Cuba, Puerto Rico, Guam and the Philippines came the US judicial doctrine of unincorporated territory. The Insular Cases of 1900 are applicable to separate customs territories under any peace treaty ratified by the US Senate.

Under the San Francisco treaty, the US was the principal occupational authority over Japan and dependencies like Formosa.

As long as the ROC officially conducts the civil administration of Taiwan, it is subjected to US judicial administrative authority of the TRA civil rights clause. Taiwan is qualified as unincorporated territory by the San Francisco treaty; but only as long as it is "politically undefined" or it remains politically unfinalized by its interim status of the San Francisco treaty.

The Taiwan question is protected by the TRA during any interim status under a so-called "one China" policy. AIT cannot abandon its obligations under the TRA and the San Francisco treaty just because of a "2-28 civil affairs agreement" with the PRC.

Paal, please read your own foreign affairs manuals, because your statements are contravening the TRA and San Francisco treaty in the name of the Feb. 28 civil affairs agreement first signed in 1972.

Jeff Geer

Manaus, Brazil

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