Mon, Nov 12, 2012 - Page 8 News List

It is time for a little brotherly love

By Koo Kwang-ming 辜寬敏

This imagined community will in the end necessarily result in the formation of a state. People protect their own and the community’s interests, and so they hope to establish a state to be able to protect themselves. This is an unavoidable historical trend which transcends ethnicity.

Not everyone in Taiwan agrees on whether to call the country the ROC or Taiwan, but everyone acknowledges it is a sovereign, independent country: On this point there is a consensus. If China fails to appreciate how Taiwanese think, or how they feel, and insists on using political and economic tactics to annex Taiwan, it will find this will breed even stronger anti-China sentiment.

Mao Zedong (毛澤東) was in favor of Taiwanese independence. When the Taiwanese Communist Party was formed in Shanghai on April 15, 1928, one of its political goals was to support Taiwanese independence and the CCP sent a delegation to the meeting. Mao himself made clear his opposition to Japanese imperialism and said on many occasions that he was pro Taiwanese independence. Now, the CCP is against the idea. Surely it is not trying to develop a form of Chinese imperialism?

Therefore, when I talk of brother countries, I do so with goodwill and sincerity and I hope that China will consider the proposal. Perhaps they will not be able to accept it immediately, but I believe that there will come a day when they will address this issue.

It is debatable whether the Brother Countries proposal will find acceptance within Taiwan, or indeed within the government which has already engaged the CCP in dialogue using the “1992 consensus.” As the government’s China policy is already a cause of concern for the public it has hardly been successful.

Ma seems to be using his executive power and his legislative majority to push through what he wants in the absence of any oversight to counter him. Taiwanese have differing opinions on all of this, though. So, if Ma continues this China policy, it is likely he will see his support ratings slide even lower.

Ma’s “three noes” policy (no unification, no independence and no use of force) is both confusing and meaningless. The majority of Taiwanese believe that Taiwan is a sovereign, independent country, so the idea of independence goes without saying. Taiwan is a country in and of itself, not a territory nor a colony of any other country and all that requires addressing are the issues related to the country’s name and the Constitution, in order to normalize the country. There is no possibility of Taiwan using military force against China; all the intimidation is coming from the other direction. Therefore, the idea of “no use of force” is meaningless.

Also, according to a recent National Chengchi University public opinion poll, published in June, 63.2 percent of the population are in favor of maintaining the status quo with regards to cross-strait relations. Does that not mean maintaining Taiwan’s current status as an independent country?

According to the poll those wanting independence or to maintain the status quo together make up 82.8 percent of respondents and only 9.8 percent would be willing to see unification with China. Should the wishes of more than 80 percent of the population be subordinated to those of 10 percent? This runs contrary to the wishes of the majority of the population which is why Ma’s “no unification, no independence and no use of force” are just empty words uttered for the sake of getting votes.

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