China has done it again, buying a Taiwanese ally with a very large sum of money. It is highly regrettable that 42 years of Taiwanese-Malawi relations apparently meant little to a Malawian government in thrall of US$6 billion. And it is laughable that China continues to attack Taiwanese diplomatic interests with not so much as a response from supporters of the cross-strait "status quo" in the US.
This circus was designed to embarrass the Taiwanese government and President Chen Shui-bian (
This is a near replay of July 2002 when Nauru, in a convenient coincidence, announced it would recognize China on the day Chen was sworn in as Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairman.
Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) presidential candidate Ma Ying-jeou (
However, the KMT is living in a fantasy land of Chinese benevolence judging from his claim yesterday that his "three noes" pledge -- promising no move toward unification or independence and no use of force -- would pave the way for long-term peace in the Taiwan Strait and satisfy Beijing.
In a world of genuine benevolence, Taiwan would have gained international space following the agreement reached between former KMT chairman Lien Chan (
We're still waiting for any sign of it.
Beijing could also have ended its hunt for Taiwan's allies as a sign of goodwill following KMT Legislator John Chiang's (
In March, two referendums will be held in tandem with the presidential election. One is a DPP-initiated referendum on joining the UN under the name "Taiwan," and the other is a KMT-proposed referendum on "rejoining" the world body using the official name of the Republic of China, or any other "practical" title that would uphold the nation's dignity.
Regardless of which version the public supports, the referendum questions offer Taiwanese a fine opportunity to let the world know that their country wants to be treated with respect and recognized as part of the world community.
If neither referendum passes -- a grave possibility given the KMT's penchant for boycotting plebiscites -- the message would be bleak and difficult to undo: If Taiwanese can't assert themselves and claim a place on the world map, then how can they denounce others for swapping allegiances?
China can and should be criticized for poaching Taiwan's allies, but so should those Taiwanese who can't be bothered to stand up for themselves.
The Jumbo Floating Restaurant was a landmark in Hong Kong for nearly half a century. The palatial restaurant, with its pastiche Chinese architecture and neon lights perfectly encapsulated the territory’s beguiling balance of East and West, tradition and modernity. It was a feature backdrop in numerous Hong Kong films. However, forced to close amid the stringent COVID-19 lockdown policies of Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam (林鄭月娥) and denied financial support from her government, the floating temple to Cantonese gastronomy was towed from its mooring in Aberdeen Harbour this month by its owners with its planned destination not released. On June
Ned Price, spokesperson of the United States Department of State, is a Twitter influencer at the exalted “celebrity/macro” rank. So, even though it was well after working hours on Friday evening, May 20, 2022 — as Secretary of State Antony Blinken prepared for President Biden’s first presidential trip to Asia — Ned Price was sure of an audience as he “tweeted” the following message: “The PRC continues to publicly misrepresent U.S. policy. The United States does not subscribe to the PRC’s ‘one China principle’ — we remain committed to our longstanding, bipartisan one China policy, guided by the Taiwan Relations Act,
Following the controversial nomination process of the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) candidate for the Taoyuan mayoral election, various KMT members are vying for a nomination for the November vote in Kaohsiung, where they would face off with Kaohsiung Mayor Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP). Former Department of Health minister Yaung Chih-liang (楊志良) last week said that if given the mandate, he would run as the KMT’s candidate. Sun Yat-sen School president Chang Ya-chung (張亞中) also expressed his willingness to run, touting his policies for Kaohsiung at a conference held by local industry representatives on Thursday last week. If
President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has focused on improving relations with South Asian countries under the New Southbound Policy. It is in this context that Thursday’s meeting between Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Hon Hai Precision Industry Co chairman Young Liu (劉揚偉) has been viewed as important — not merely because a Taiwanese company is planning to establish an electric vehicle plant in India, but also because the meeting indicated India’s willingness to engage at the highest political level. While this development is certain to boost ties between Taiwan and India, several measures have also been taken to improve Taipei’s relations