Imagine a situation where US President Barack Obama sends a trade negotiation team to China. A trade agreement is reached behind closed doors and this agreement is then brought to Congress and introduced to the Senate where Democrats hold a majority. A mere 30 seconds later, the Senate approves the agreement, which is now ready for Obama’s signature.
This is what has happened in Taiwan. Perhaps the analogy is too simplistic, as there are two chambers of Congress in the US but only one in Taiwan’s legislature, the Legislative Yuan, which is dominated by the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), which holds 64 of the 113 seats.
In an attempt to disperse students, the Taiwanese government began using brute force on Monday morning, which led to an eruption of violence. Whether this leads to widespread political unrest remains to be seen, but one thing is clear: While March Madness in the US ends with a clear victor, establishing a winner between the Taiwanese government and the student protesters will be a much more difficult and uncertain task.