Fri, Sep 21, 2012 - Page 3 News List

FEATURE: Ma appointments lay bare his cross-strait ambitions

CREATING LEGACY:The appointment of two close Ma aides to head China and US relations may be a prelude to his plan to negotiate a peace treaty with Beijing

By Mo Yan-chih  /  Staff reporter

Soochow University political scientist Hsu Yung-ming (徐永明) said rather than political implications, the appointments reflect more on Ma’s strategic placement of his clique of trusted aides in major positions to continue his influence after completing his second term.

“The reshuffle came as a surprise because it is beyond imagination that those inexperienced appointees would take over such important positions. On the other hand, such an arrangement is no surprise, as it is an old habit of Ma’s to only use his an extremely small circle of aides,” he said.

Hsu said the appointment of Wang Yu-chi and Lin, both inexperienced and little known in cross-strait circles, also suggests that Ma will place more importance on US-Taiwan -relations in the second term.

National Tung Hwa University political analyst Shih Cheng-feng (施正鋒) said the appointment of King aims to build more trust with the US, while the government could be preparing for political negotiations with China as Ma’s pro-China stance will not change.

“Without the pressure of seeking another term, Ma is seeking to establish his personal reputation in history. The list explains that he will speed up implementation of his policies regardless of criticism,” he said.

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