Thu, Jan 25, 2007 - Page 8 News List

Letters: No country is an island

Is anyone paying attention to current affairs in East Asia? Are people concerned about the conclusions reached at the ASEAN Summit, ASEAN+3 Summit and the East Asia Summit? The Taiwanese seem completely unaware of the first maritime security exercise conducted by the ASEAN Regional Forum in Singapore, let alone the "old" news mentioned above.

Recently, the region has seen a series of important developments.

The maritime security exercise, developments in energy policies and the ASEAN Charter all suggest that East Asian countries are writing their own history of regional integration.

Born in a free country, we should pay more attention.

But market-driven news selection is blurring our view of the world.

We used to blame international society for denying us our rights and ignoring our sovereignty, but most of us pay just as little attention to developments in our own neighborhood.

A worldview cannot be based on scandals and gossip.

John Donne once said: "No man is an island."

That applies to Taiwan, too. If we don't pay more attention to our region and the world in general, our island will in a sense be isolated.

But it is an isolation we cannot afford.

Yang Hao


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