Thu, Jan 16, 2003 - Page 4 News List

Stop mixing culture with politics, KMT warns

By Sandy Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

KMT Chairman Lien Chan (連戰) has criticized the DPP administration for trying to manipulate the nation's cultural arena to fit its pro-independence political ideology.

The DPP administration's attempt to eliminate all things that are non-Taiwan related will in the long run lead Taiwan's cultural development into crisis, said KMT spokeswoman Kuo Su-chun (郭素春), recounting Lien's remarks made at the party's weekly Central Standing Committee meeting yesterday.

"Culture as a whole is a public asset. It does not exist to serve a political agenda and thus it should not be manipulated by any political powers for any political purposes," Kuo quoted Lien as saying.

Kuo said that Lien made the comments after hearing a report delivered by Lee Jui-ten (李瑞騰) during the meeting. Lee is a professor of Chinese literature at the National Central University.

According to Kuo, Lee criticized the government for trying to influence the country's cultural environment with its political ideology. Under the DPP's influence, Lee said, the National Museum of History (國家歷史博物館) is no longer about the history of the ROC, but about the history of Taiwan.

Lee also called into question the government's recent decision to establish a branch of the National Palace Museum (故宮博物院), saying that it is most likely to eventually become a museum displaying only Taiwanese items and not Asian cultural items, as the government claimed it intended to do.

The Executive Yuan announced its decision earlier this month to establish a branch of the prestigious museum in Chiayi County's Taipao.

Pointing to earlier debates about changing the name of the national museum, Lee concluded that all such moves are part of the ruling administration's attempt to eliminate all things that are not related to Taiwan.

Following Lee's address, Lien said that the report had unmasked the DPP administrations' scheme. Lien also said that the KMT would ask its legislative caucus to keep a close eye on the government's proposals with regard to cultural issues, Kuo said.

He added that the party would strengthen its interaction with the cultural arena to support artists' creative development, Kuo said.

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