Sun, Dec 28, 2003 - Page 3 News List

Lee blasts KMT's democracy credentials

HYPOCRISY The former president said that the KMT has been aping the DPP at every step, but that the people are too smart to fall for their ruses

By Chang Yun-ping  /  STAFF REPORTER

Former president Lee Teng-hui speaks at the graduation ceremony of the National Policy Research Class and Elite Teachers Class of the Lee Teng-hui School yesterday. Lee said that the KMT and PFP were hypocrites.

PHOTO: CHIANG YING-YING, TAIPEI TIMES

Former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) yesterday dismissed Legislative Speaker Wang Jin-pyng's (王金平) support for Taiwan independence as a piece of trickery, saying Wang's statement was just another hypocritical example of feigned support for democracy from the pan-blue camp.

Lee said the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) and People First Party (PFP) had recently taken a number of follow-the-leader positions -- feigning support for a Referendum Law (公投法), rewriting the Constitution and even Taiwan independence. Lee asserted that the pan-blue camp's positions were merely imitation and fake rhetoric.

Describing the pan-blue politicians' perceived imitation of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) -- which has has come out first in support of various democratic reforms -- as something similar to playing go, Lee said "It might seem confusing when your opponent imitates you at every step, but as smart as the people are, they won't be fooled by this trickery.

"I was the chairman of the KMT for 12 years and I know all too well what the pan-blue camp's tricks are like. First they passed a fake Referendum Law, and now they say that Taiwan independence is okay. Everything the KMT and PFP have said has been false, and they might fool small children, but they can never fool me," Lee said.

The former president made the remarks yesterday at a graduation ceremony at the National Policy Research Class and Elite Teachers Class of the Lee Teng-hui School, a political academy that Lee established.

Lee, giving another example of what he characterized as the KMT leadership's vague notion of Taiwanese identity, said "One of the current presidential candidates once said `I am purely Chinese.' This reveals how muddy this presidential candidate's thinking is."

Lee also criticized the media outlets that he characterized as pro-unification. He said they should be held accountable for poisoning people's minds and standing in the way of the development of Taiwanese identity.

The former president said that the pro-China media's linking of the arrests of several Taiwanese businessmen in China with President Chen Shui-bian's (陳水扁) public statement that 496 Chinese missiles were aimed at Taiwan was not legitimate.

"It was the same story when the media broadsided me in 1996 when I revealed that the missiles China fired in a military exercise in the Taiwan Strait were blanks. They accused me of leaking intelligence and alleged that Taiwan's intelligence operatives had been arrested. But in fact it was all fabricated," Lee said.

Lee also lambasted the newly passed Referendum Law (公民投票法), which contains several limitations on the people's right to initiate a vote. Lee said that the law was a mockery and an insult to the people of Taiwan.

"Former Japanese prime minister Yoshiro Mori (森喜朗) yesterday told me that the Japanese newspapers had characterized Taiwan's Referendum Law as similar in spirit to Western referendum laws. But I told him that if the Japanese media had carefully studied the contents of Taiwan's law, they would know it's a huge deception," Lee said.

Lee said 2003 has been a critical year in which Taiwan embarked on a journey to build a normal nation, with various large demonstrations demonstrating the people's solidarity on identity-related issues.

These demonstrations included a rally of 150,000 people in support of changing the nation's name on Sept. 6 and a march of 200,000 people calling for referendum legislation on Oct. 25.

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