Mon, Oct 17, 2005 - Page 8 News List

Letters: Pro-China coalition using US

By Huang Jei-hsuan

The "one China" policy is a tool that is being used to suppress Taiwan's aspirations for formal sovereignty, as well as its democracy. Unfortunately, the US government has often "assisted" at the most inopportune times.

For instance, late last year, the Taiwanese people were wary enough to install a pro-China pan-blue majority in the Legislative Yuan -- a result for which the US government's untimely anti-sovereignty remarks were at least partially responsible. Now, the US wants these pro-China legislators to let the China-deterring arms procurement bill pass -- an irony only Beijing would appreciate. However, for the US, this might be the first taste of how the "one China" policy can come in conflict with US strategic interests.

To be sure, the arms bill could still be passed eventually, but not on account of US pressure. Rather, it would be the pan-blue camp's utmost desire to regain control of the government so it could compel legislators to try to mollify Taiwanese voters.

As a pre-presidential election strategy, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) will try to delude the public into believing that it cares about Taiwan's security. The KMT leadership is fully aware that the process of arms purchase takes years and will be controlled by the government that takes power in 2008.

The procurement plan could then be "revised" and the pan-blue camp's "grand" scheme of disarming Taiwan would proceed unmolested, if the KMT were to regain power. That's why the bill is destined to drag on as close to the presidential election as possible.

The public can expect to be fed a stream of lame excuses by the KMT in the coming months.

It's essential to understand that Taiwan's unilateral disarmament is the pan-blue camp leaders' "oath of loyalty" to join up with Beijing.

Meanwhile, these leaders in concert with Taiwan's pro-China media have been preaching to the people the impossibility of Taiwan's independence. Invariably they use the US' "one China" policy to back up their claims. At the same time, they are relentlessly planting the seeds of inevitability for "unification" instead.

Up until recently, positive factors, such as Taiwanese consciousness and identity, and the desirability of democracy and liberty, have dwarfed all of the negative ones. In fact, opinion polls showing how overwhelmingly the Taiwanese people are against "unification" -- have often been cited as evidence of the impossibility of Taiwan ever succumbing to China.

But, pan-blue camp leaders' incessant exploitation of the US' "one China" policy -- which reached a crescendo when former KMT chairman Lien Chan (連戰) visited Beijing to form the KMT-Chinese Communist Party (CCP) alliance -- seems to be eroding the Taiwanese people's confidence and wearing down their defenses.

In other words, while Taiwan should be on high alert to guard against "unification by stealth," the Taiwanese people might be dangerously close to their most apathetic. Should the collaboration of pan-blue camp leaders with Beijing succeed in bringing about a takeover by stealth of Taiwan by China, the US' "one China" policy would have at least contributed in terms of creating an amicable environment. In light of this, the US government's standard practice of "hands off Taiwan-China discussions, as well as resolution of Taiwan's status as long as no violence is involved" appears to be unrealistic and deserves a thorough review.

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