Sun, May 08, 2005 - Page 3 News List

Protection against the united front requires a united Taiwan

As a former adviser to the late general secretary of the Chinese Communist Party Hu Yaoban and himself a party memeber for 37 years, senior advisor to the president Ruan Ming knows all-too-well Beijing's nature and its aim of eventual unification with Taiwan. Ruan sat down with "Taipei Times" reporter Huang Tai-lin and gave his insight on opposition party leaders' trip to China and how Beijing aims to use these meetings to its advantage


Senior President Policy Advisor Ruan Ming gestures as he makes a point during his interview.


Taipei Times: Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Lien Chan (連戰) has concluded his controversial trip to China, a visit which was perceived by many as one that played into Beijing's hands. Based on your observations and understanding of China's united front strategy, what is your take on Lien's visit?

Ruan Ming (阮銘): I don't think Lien is simply a pawn of China's unificationist aims, I think by meeting with the leadership, he himself has practically become a tool of the CCP's united front scheme.

The other day President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) said Lien's trip helped in "befitting his role as opposition party leader." In my view, I think Lien has done very well in acting as China's subordinate party representative in Taiwan.

China practices a system where multiple parties cooperate under the leadership of the CCP. They are the so-called "eight democratic political parties." These subordinate parties all abide by three rules: accepting the CCP's leadership, adhering to the same views as the CCP, and assisting the CCP in its united front strategy to further the goal of unification.

The first among these eight "political parties" is the Chinese Nationalist Party Revolution Committee. Its mission is to use on Taiwan tactics that are a part of the united front strategy. It has not achieved much during the past 50 years, but, Lien's trip outperformed it.

The media reported that Lien spoke of the Republic of China [ROC] while in China. But when I read reports more carefully, the ROC he spoke of was actually the early ROC when it was in power. Lien said that Sun Yat-Sen (孫中山) was a revolutionary pioneer who created the first democratic country in Asia -- the ROC. Such rhetoric was in line with the CCP's version of history, which acknowledges Sun Yat-Sen as a revolutionary and the CCP's predecessor. Sun's ROC was the ROC of the past, but the ROC which China says was destroyed in 1949.


* Born: July, 3 1931, in Shanghai

* Education: Bachelors from Yenching University, Beijing

* Career: Presidential policy advisor; adviser in the Taiwan Research Institute's strategic and international studies department

* Experience: Visiting scholar at various US universities, including Harvard, Columbia, Princeton and the University of Michigan; advisor in the 1980s to then secretary-general of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Hu Yaoban; deputy director of the CCP's Central Party Academic Theory Research Office (1977-1982); sent to Ningxia for "laogai" (勞改, the Chinese gulag) (1969-1973); director-general of the CCP's Publicity Department's Cultural Revolutionary Committee (1961-1967).

* Notable experience: Joined the CCP at the age of 15; expelled from the CCP in 1983 and left China in 1988 after the defeat of Hu Yaoban's reform program; gained ROC citizenship in 2000.

* Publications: "Hu Yaobang on the Turning Point of History" (歷史轉折點上的胡耀邦) 1994; "Deng Xiaoping: Chronicle of Empire" (鄧小平帝國) 1994; "Essays on the Character of the Communist Party of China" (中共人物論) , 1993; "Democratic Taiwan vs. Communist China" (民主台灣VS共產中國) 2001.

Let's look at Lien's speech at the Peking University. In the latter half of his speech he highlighted the "Chung hua min tzu" (the Chinese people). When Lien spoke of present situation, he did not mention Taiwan's freedom or democratic achievements -- only the "Chunghua min tzu," and nationalism. Such talks falls in line with the current position of [Chinese President] Hu Jintao's (胡錦濤) CCP.

In China nowadays, no one believes in Communism or Marxism any more, so Hu's regime instead engages in nationalism and "Chung hua min tzu" -- examples of which were well demonstrated during the anti-Japanese protests that took place not so long ago. Lien's speech at Peking University echoed China's "Chung hua min tzu" nationalism.

The KMT chairman in the past also used to speak of "one China under the Constitution" and everyone thought he meant the Constitution of ROC. This time it was apparent that the constitution he spoke of in his speech at Peking University was the Constitution of People's Republic of China (PRC).

In his speech Lien said that "there are democratic elections in designated areas [in China]," and that "the Constitution mentioned the right to property as a basic human right. I believe all these are correct historical directions."

Lien was mentioning Hu's Constitution, which he amended last year to add in protection of private property as a basic human right.

Taiwan is a democratic system while China is a communist dictatorial system. This is what [late Straits Exchange Foundation chairman] Koo Cheng-fu (辜振甫) said when he met with [chairman of China's Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits] Wang Daohan (汪道涵) in 1993 in Singapore, and when he met with [former Chinese president] Jiang Zemin (江澤民) in Shanghai in 1998.

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