Mon, Nov 08, 2004 - Page 1 News List

Soong prophecies war next year if greens win majority

By Caroline Hong and Jewel Huang  /  STAFF REPORTERS

A catastrophic cross-strait war will occur next year should the pan-green camp be granted a majority in the legislative elections, People First Party (PFP) Chairman James Soong (宋楚瑜) said yesterday, sparking a derisive response from Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) party heavyweights.

While stumping for the pan-blue camp's legislative candidates throughout the country this weekend, Soong urged the public to vote for PFP and Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) candidates to prevent Taiwan from moving closer to conflict because of the policies of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and the Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) administration. Taking his prediction a step further, Soong said that previous "60-year disaster cycles" show that a disaster for Taiwan is imminent.

Saying that he was taking it upon himself to predict Taiwan's future, Soong made a reference to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in his prediction of a cross-strait war. Sixty years passed between the Japanese attack on the US port of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in 1941 and the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington in 2001. Similarly, next year will be the 60th year since Taiwan's retrocession in 1945, he said.

Sovereignty of Taiwan, which was ceded to Japan in 1895. In 1945, after the Japanese surrendered to the allies, the Republic of China under the KMT assumed administrative control of Taiwan.

It was not immediately clear if Soong was implying that the KMT's takeover of Taiwan was one of the disasters in his "60-year disaster cycle" theory.

Soong then urged voters to support a pan-blue majority in the legislative elections at this critical crossroads in Taiwan's history.

In response, DPP Deputy Secretary-General Chung Chia-pin (鍾佳濱) yesterday denounced Soong's words as superstitious and alarmist babble.

"The pan-blue camp has recently been making inappropriate statements that don't make any sense. And it is obvious that Soong is attempting to employ the words of prophets as a campaign tool to capture the news pages," Chung said.

"Some of these statements sound like [the pan-blues] want to curse Taiwan and terrify people living here, which shows that they want to get more votes by spreading fear."

"The national destiny should be controlled by the people, and political leaders should realize what people want. They shouldn't threaten people with ancient omens or groundless speculation," Chung continued.

"There is no doubt about who will be trying to start a war and agitating for war, if, as Soong said, the pan-blue camp fails to control the legislature," he added.

Chung urged Soong and the pan-blue camp to bring election themes back to discussions about public policy and on how to bring a "stable and scientific" society back to Taiwan.

Soong first made his "prediction" while campaigning for PFP candidate Lee Ching-an (李慶安) in Taipei on Saturday, and repeated the remarks yesterday in Taipei County at a re-election rally for PFP Legislator Chou Hsi-wei (周錫瑋).

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