Presidential Office adviser and long-time independence advocate Su Beng (史明) late on Thursday evening expressed on Facebook his support for President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) to seek re-election next year.
The move came after Presidential Office adviser Wu Li-pei (吳澧培), former Presidential Office adviser Peng Ming-min (彭明敏), former Academia Sinica president Lee Yuan-tseh (李遠哲) and the Reverend Kao Chun-ming (高俊明) in an open letter on Thursday urged Tsai not to seek re-election.
Su, 101, urged people to support Tsai in the presidential election next year, as “otherwise, it would not only be Tsai’s personal failure, but also the failure of Su Beng and the pro-independence movement.”
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times
The “one country, two systems” scheme Beijing tried to force upon the nation on Wednesday was a “colonial” policy, Su said.
“The Taiwanese independence movement is 99.9 percent complete. The last fight is in the remaining 0.1 percent,” said Su, also known as the “pro-independence grandpa.”
“Taiwan is where we were born and where we live. [Only] Taiwanese are the masters of Taiwan,” he said.
In the “last fight,” Taiwan must abide by its principles: promote nationalism and defeat colonialism; follow policies to move Taiwanese independence from an “ideal” to a “reality”; and engage in spiritual pursuits to become better people, which has to do with liberation, he said.
The three principles are themselves forms of spiritual pursuits Taiwanese should engage in, he added.
The post drew a response from Tsai, who yesterday morning replied: “Thank you so much, grandpa. Please take care.”
Su is the author of Taiwan’s 400-Year History (台灣人四百年史).
Separately yesterday, Overseas Taiwanese for Democracy, a group of Taiwanese studying or working overseas, also issued a statement in support of Tsai.
Taiwan is at a crossroads never before seen in history and many are at a loss as to the way forward, the statement said.
“What Taiwan needs now is strength from the unity of all its people coming together to make their own path,” the statement said. “Under the leadership of a president who is resolute, composed, flexible and yet tough, [Taiwan will] gradually bring reform to internal affairs, broaden diplomatic space and strive toward the future.”
Tough at times and moderate when needed, Tsai has exercised flexibility in her governance, it said.
“A good leader needs these qualities to help Taiwan sail through the storm and the tumultuous times it is having both domestically and internationally,” it said. “We openly support President Tsai and her administration, as well as the efforts they have made to achieve reform goals, including marriage equality, labor rights, pension reforms and transitional justice.”
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