Thu, Nov 06, 2008 - Page 8 News List

Taiwan must stand up for itself

By Ing-wen Tsai 蔡英文

Ma has not just made small concessions; his concessions will erase the democratic progress the DPP worked on for more than 10 years to create.

Senior national security officials racked their brains over how Ma would be addressed by the Chinese delegation and tried to be very “creative.” The DPP, however, believes that a presidency has more to do with “dignity” than “creativity.” We do not need creativity. A president is what is needed — just a president.

We urge Ma to request that Chen address him as “president” during his visit. Ma should also clearly express to Chen the political opinions he proposed during his presidential campaign when he stated: “The future of Taiwan must be decided by its 23 million people.”

This is the only way these talks can be beneficial to Taiwan’s sovereignty.

Fourth, China is ripping Taiwan apart, which was made very clear from the arrangements for Chen’s visit. The DPP was deliberately omitted from the entire visit. The KMT is the only political party in the world that would align itself with a hostile foreign party to damage its domestic rivals. While this situation is not new, it has to stop immediately. If not, Taiwan will become embroiled in everlasting division and opposition.

Chen’s visit to Taiwan is not the KMT’s and the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP) private business. Chen’s visit is of concern to the entire country. We appeal to the government to immediately abolish the KMT-CCP platform and ensure that all agreements made between SEF and ARATS are monitored through the legislature and public opinion.

There was never a war across the Taiwan Strait during the eight years the DPP was in power. The DPP proved to the world that as long as our government has wisdom and determination, Taiwan’s sovereignty could be protected while developing cross-strait trade and avoiding war with China. However, the method employed by the Ma administration to develop trade and avoid war with China is to make endless concessions in terms of our national sovereignty.

I hereby request that the people of Taiwan think hard about what we have really gained from all of Ma’s appeasement. Are two pandas really all we have to show as a nation after all the trouble the Ma administration has gone to?

Beloved Taiwanese, as of Nov. 3, let us make Taipei City into the true essence of “Taiwan.” Our government has forgone our dignity and sovereignty, so let us take action to uphold these values. This is all we can do and this is a responsibility that we all share.

We must use peaceful, rational, resolute, non-violent methods to uphold and protect everything that we now possess.

I would especially like to make it clear to all the members of the DPP that you cannot resort to violence, regardless of the time or situation. Democracy is the DPP’s only weapon and peace is the only method we can utilize. This is my only request and my only order.

Ing-wen Tsai is the Chairperson of the Democratic Progressive Party.

TRANSLATED BY TED YANG AND DREW CAMERON

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