Fri, Feb 14, 2020 - Page 8 News List

Putting the lie to ‘1992 consensus’

By Jerome Keating

The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) is preparing to choose a new chairperson. As this takes place, younger members are also calling for party reform and, shall we say, party rebranding.

One candidate, representing the younger generation, is KMT Legislator Johnny Chiang (江啟臣). Chiang, 42, is pushing for reform and a greater voice for younger members, stressing the need to return to basic values, such as democracy, justice and innovation.

Another candidate, former Taipei mayor Hau Lung-bin (郝龍斌), 67, has also mentioned reform, but in a more half-hearted and half-baked way, common to that found in the KMT old guard.

He initially broached the issue by saying that the KMT should consider changes and it could start by getting tougher with China. He raised the long overdue point that if China does not treat the KMT with respect or as an equal partner, why should the KMT continue to attempt to negotiate with it?

Hau has sensed the growing awareness among the young that the KMT should admit to its surrounding political reality, but the problem is that China has never treated the KMT with respect.

It has only and temporarily dealt with the KMT out of political expediency.

Hau correctly criticized KMT members, who like dogs with their tails between their legs, have flocked across the Taiwan Strait to accept free dinners, etc, from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Such members are not promoting democracy; they are courting the growing wealth of the CCP.

China has never returned any good will from the KMT, because it has never had to.

The KMT lost the war. China knows that. The world knows that, but somehow, the KMT cannot bring itself to acknowledge that reality. It remains like the “storied emperor” trying to convince the world it has “territorial clothes.”

Clinging to its past and lost fantasies, the KMT twists, bows and scrapes to promote this narrative. Why does it bother?

The CCP does agree that there is “one China,” but its agreement is limited only to its version of what that one China means. China has not and will not admit that there can be any other interpretation of what “one China” means.

CCP thinking proceeds like this: “You [the KMT] lost the war. We followed you to Hainan and destroyed you there. We would eventually have done the same to you in Taiwan. Unfortunately in overreach, we gambled, took sides and participated in the Korean War. That caused the US to intervene in the Taiwan Strait and delay our plans.”

China knows that. The US knows that — but somehow, the KMT will not face it even if it realizes it in its heart.

At first of course, the KMT had promoted its fantasy of retaking China. When did it know that such a dream was beyond hope? It surely must have sensed this long before the KMT’s staunchest ally, the US, moved its embassy from Taipei to Beijing.

Ironically, it is here that Hau falters and tries to blame the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) for destroying the KMT myth, when the DPP spells out that China only seeks “one country, two systems.” Beijing had never admitted to “one country, two interpretations.”

The KMT’s ludicrous position relies solely on maintaining the bogus “1992 consensus,” which former Mainland Affairs Council chairman Su Chi (蘇起) invented eight years later.

How then to expose this ludicrous KMT scandal?

The answer is quite simple. Presume hypothetically that the unthinkable would happen: that the CCP would capitulate to the KMT and let it take over and shape “one China” to its fashion. What would be the KMT’s first steps in this fantasy world?

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