Sun, Jul 18, 2004 - Page 8 News List

Status quo outdated

By James Chou

The US' own antiquated notion of the "status quo" that governs the present relationship between Taiwan and is rapidly changing and being challenged.

The US can no longer rely on its own agenda to deal with the geopolitical reality in the region today, given that the region is undergoing tremendous transformation politically, culturally and economically.

Three decades ago, the US could easily deal with a Taiwan ruled by the autocratic regime of Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) and later Chiang Ching-kuo (蔣經國).

The US must now, albeit in an indirect fashion, deal with the 23 million Taiwanese people and their democratically elected leaders, as politics is no longer being dominated by just one or two dictators and their closely connected inner circle.

The US' demand that the Taiwanese people not challenge the US-defined "status quo" is not only impractical, it is immoral.

Simply put, whether the status quo will provide long-term peace and stability in the Taiwan Strait is increasingly questionable.

Instead of pressuring Taiwanese to live with the unrealistic "one China" policy or the US-defined "status quo" indefinitely, Washington must come up with new initiatives to challenge its own "status quo" if stability and peace of the region is still a vital part of its interests.

Such re-examination of the outdated China-Taiwan policy, made to reflect today's political reality, is a must -- especially when all the stakeholders realize that the likelihood of a peaceful resolution in the Taiwan Strait is increasingly dim.

James Chou

Vancouver, Canada

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