Mon, May 02, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Lee says Lien visit threatens freedoms

SOWING DIVISIONS At a forum the former president said China was using Lien Chan to destabilize Taiwanese society and that the nation's democracy was under threat

By Jewel Huang  /  STAFF REPORTER

Former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) yesterday warned that Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Lien Chan's (連戰) visit to China has sparked three crises that will eliminate Taiwan's sovereignty, freedom and democracy, and said that Lien might collude with China to launch a "political blitz" to destabilize Taiwan, such as a bid to recall the president.

Lee made the remarks at a forum discussing "the imminent crisis that Taiwan is facing" held by the Taiwan Advocates (群策會) yesterday afternoon at the Grand Hotel. About 1,500 people attended the forum to listen to Lee and four other political analysts deliver their viewpoints on the significance of Lien's trip to China.

In his opening speech, Lee, who is the president of Taiwan Advocates, said that Chinese President Hu Jintao (胡錦濤) is employing Lien to make mischief in Taiwanese society, adding that Hu's tactic shows that China has launched its offensive to divide Taiwan from every angle.

"The serious crisis that Taiwan faces is not China's military threat, but its new strategy of fomenting dissent in Taiwanese society," Lee said. "In the wake of the passage of the `Anti-Secession' Law, it is obvious that China is assuming a strategy of allying with the pan-blue camp to attack the pan-green camp, and utilizing Taiwanese to subdue Taiwanese."

Lee said that Lien and Hu's cooperation aims to push Taiwanese to identify with China -- and was the reason Hu had praised Lien as "having a Chinese heart."

Noting the first crisis caused by Lien's trip is that Taiwan's sovereignty might be eliminated, Lee questioned why Lien did not dare to bring the national flags of the Republic of China (ROC) with him and almost never dared to utter the word "ROC" in China.

"It proves that the `defending the ROC' that they talked about all the time is a lie," Lee said. "In fact, they are just echoing the Beijing authorities' policy of `anti-Taiwanese independence and facilitating unification,'" he said.

Lee said that Lien and Soong, after establishing a partnership with Beijing, might launch a "political blitz" in Taiwan to destabilize the country. This could include measures such as working with pan-blue lawmakers to propose to recall the president.

"Lien and Soong are taking advantage of Taiwan's freedom and democracy as a protective umbrella and colluding with China to launch a civil war against democracy" in Taiwan, which aims to facilitate their great undertaking -- the unification of China," Lee said, adding that this was the second crisis facing the nation -- having its democracy undermined.

The third crisis the people of Taiwan face is losing their hard-won freedom and democracy, he said.

"Everyone in Taiwan has already long enjoyed democracy and freedom. As a result, some people think freedom and democracy are dispensable," Lee said. "If we don't cherish the accomplishments of our successful democratic reforms, our descendants will unavoidably pay for it by losing their freedom."

Political commentator Yang Hsien-hung (楊憲宏) said that President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) should declare that his "four noes and one not" pledge is no longer in effect given that China's "Anti-Secession" Law has destroyed the premise of the promises -- that China does not use force against Taiwan.

"I think President Chen's pledge was the wedge of today's situation that has lead to the political tsunami that has almost engulfed Taiwan," Yang said.

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