Wed, Mar 09, 2005 - Page 8 News List

It's Chen who is delusional

By Stephen Carter

Changing the nation's anachronistic name to better reflect its current reality is a reasonable action the government could take. Until recently President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) led us to believe that he agreed. In last year's election he stated as much. Now he believes such a desire is "delusional."

I wonder what else he would define in the same way? Is drafting a national Constitution that reflects the nation's political reality now deemed by Chen to be delusional? Or what about holding in one's heart a patriotic love for one's country, if that country is Taiwan?

It makes you wonder. In Chen's "new Taiwan," apparently any action, belief or statement that offends or upsets China is now to be considered in much the same way.

Yet isn't it Chen who is being delusional? He is deceiving himself and the people of Taiwan if he thinks appeasement and expressions of goodwill toward China will produce anything but more intense hostility, more vitriolic condemnation and preparations for war.

Dictatorships always interpret conciliatory actions by democratic states as signs of weakness to be exploited ruthlessly. It's almost a natural law.

Has Chen forgotten what China is capable of? The statistics on genocide are readily available. Victims of the Nazis: 17 million; of the Chinese Nationalists: 10.2 million; of the former Soviet Union: a staggering 61.9 million; and of the Chinese Communist Party: 38.7 million and counting.

I don't believe China can be dissuaded from attacking Taiwan. It has gone beyond that point. It certainly is not about preventing independence -- not any more. It's about punishing Taiwan for the humiliation and insults China believes it has suffered.

R.J. Rummel, in China's Bloody Century, argues that the root cause of genocide is "arbitrary, undisciplined power in the hands of tyrants, and where such power is centralized and unchecked, the possibility exists that it will be used to kill in unprecedented numbers in pursuit of the goals of ethnic-racial purity, or national unity, or greater national glory."

The "Greater China" vision and Chinese national stability and unity have been the mantra in China for more than 30 years. Although the Chinese regime's manic obsession with Taiwan is unlikely to reach the extent of genocide, its meaning has become undeniable.

For China it is simple: Taiwan must be punished.

And Chen's pathetic, white-flag "10 point consensus" has virtually guaranteed that this will occur.

Stephen Carter

Taichung

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