A comparison makes it clear that Ma’s five years of “hard work” has shifted relations between Taiwan and China toward domestic Chinese relations under the “one China” concept.
The international community has, of course, paid attention as Ma has moved from the position that there is “one China with each side having its own interpretation” of what that China means to the view that there is “one country, two areas” and then further still by saying that cross-strait relations are not state-to-state relations.
Since Ma denies that Taiwan is a sovereign country, it of course becomes very difficult for the international community to treat Taiwan as if it were sovereign. It even makes it difficult for them to treat Taiwan as a nation whose sovereignty is in the process of being clarified and consolidated as it was during Lee’s presidency, when Taiwan moved toward becoming a regular normalized country. The killing of the Taiwanese fisherman and the Philippines’ “one China” approach is making everyone clearly see the danger of Ma moving toward the “one China” trap.
If it turns out that the life of the fisherman has been sacrificed for the sake of the “one China” policy, the lives and property of 23 million Taiwanese will also be endangered, and the sacrifice of Taiwanese lives will become a bargaining chip for China as it pursues its hegemonic policies.
In other words, the Taiwanese have lost what Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) has called the “Taiwan dream” and are left with the “China dream” that Chinese President Xi Jinping (習近平) would like to shove down their throats.
The government should do what is right in connection to the shooting incident — bring justice to the family of the killed fisherman and restore national dignity — while Ma should realize that the “one China” formula is a rope made for hanging people with. He must not willingly put it around his own, and Taiwan’s, neck.
Translated by Perry Svensson