On Sept. 29, as students rallied in cities all around Taiwan in support of pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong, the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) issued a statement about the Hong Kong protests.
The four points stated by the KMT seem to be playing a safe game. However, without condemning the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) and not having mentioned the assault on Hong Kong singer and democracy advocate Denise Ho (何韻詩) — who had red paint splashed on her in Taipei during an interview ahead of the rally there — the statement sounded like an off-the-cuff comment by a guy on the street.
The KMT said that “Hong Kong is a society based on the foundation of rule of law” and called for rational dialogue to avoid violence.
This is a deliberate attempt by the KMT to mischaracterize the Hong Kong people’s struggle for democracy as a violent confrontation between the police and people in which both parties share responsibility. It is clear that the KMT is attempting to write off the commitment and determination of Hong Kongers in their fight for democracy.
The KMT also said that the Democratic Progressive Party is exploiting the protests in Hong Kong, using them as an opportunity to stoke fears of China and anti-Chinese sentiment, and thereby escalating cross-strait tensions.
This accusation is neither nuanced nor new. If the KMT really cares about Hong Kong’s democracy, it should stand up with young people in their struggle against the CCP for democracy.
The KMT dares not offend China, so it is always reluctant to express its opinions on the democratic movement in Hong Kong. The reason why it has deliberately released the statement of its so-called four positions is because opinion polls are showing that the popularity of Kaohsiung Mayor Han Kuo-yu (韓國瑜), the party’s presidental candidate, is plummeting.
Therefore, the KMT’s motivation for caring about Hong Kong’s pro-democracy movement is due solely to its own political interests. However, in its statement, the KMT has given away its ideology of supporting the “1992 consensus,” which deliberately emphasizes the “one China” principle, with both sides agreeing to make their own interpretation to deceive the Taiwanese.
The CCP has repeatedly stressed — openly in any given diplomatic talks — that “the Taiwan issue is China’s domestic issue” and “Taiwan is an inseparable part of China.” Under circumstances like these, the idea of the “one China” principle with different interpretations has long ago been disproved by the CCP.
Why does the KMT continue to play this old trick to deceive itself and the Taiwanese?
The reason any democratic movements in Taiwan are frustrated is because a certain political party in Taiwan echoes the stance of the CCP, suppressing the desire of the Taiwanese to maintain peace and protect democracy.
President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) has said that the threat to Taiwan comes from outside the nation. In fact, disintegration from within is a bigger issue.
Chen Chi-nung is principal of Shuili Junior High School in Nantou County.
Translated by Lin Lee-kai
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