On Nov. 12, the birthday of "founding father" Sun Yat-sen (孫中山), some people closely attached to the pan-blue camp, after paying their respects at the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, laid portraits of Minister of Education Tu Cheng-sheng (杜正勝) and Exam-ination Yuan member Lin Yu-ti (林玉体) on the ground and pelted them with eggs.
\nOn the same day, a bomb was placed near the Ministry of Education, and an old soldier cut his throat in protest over the recent dispute about ending Sun's status as "founding father."
\nLin and Tu's irresponsibly voiced proposals to remove questions about China's history and geography from the entry-level national civil service examinations and to modify senior high-school history materials to separate the history of Taiwan from that of China have sparked a conflagration in the pan-blue camp and made high-ranking pan-green officials anxious.
\nIn political reality, Taiwan and China are two hostile powers, but unlike most enemies, this is because China regards Taiwan as part of its territory, a status Tai-wan rejects. In this situation, talking about sovereignty or cultural independence in Taiwan is inevitable, especially as the government elected by its people has sufficient power to govern itself, whereas China has no jurisdiction over Taiwan at all.
\nChina's belief that talk in Taiwan of sovereignty and cultural independence is a slippery slope to independence is used as its rationale to criticize and threaten Taiwan.
\nThat Taiwan is a sovereign and independent state is a fact, and that its culture has its developmental uniqueness is also widely recognized. But Taiwan has been profoundly influenced by Chinese culture. Pro-independence people, and indeed all Taiwanese, read Chinese, speak Chinese, eat Chinese food and may also take Chinese traditional medicine.
\nCultural and political independence should be dealt with separately, but given an inability to demand political indepen-dence, some people instead make a big fuss over cultural independence. Superficially, this might seem to be aiding Taiwan independence, but in reality, it makes the whole situation worse.
\nIf you say that the nation's "founding father" is a foreigner, would you also regard Minister of Justice Chen Ding-nan, (
The small Baltic nation of Lithuania last week announced that it would accept a Taiwanese representative office in its capital, Vilnius, and that it would establish its own trade office in Taiwan by the end of the year. This was more than a welcome announcement to Taiwan and goes far beyond the normal establishment of trade relations. Lithuanian Minister of Foreign Affairs Gabrielius Landsbergis summed it up succinctly, boldly saying: “Freedom-loving people should look out for each other.” With these words, Landsbergis was purposefully going beyond normal diplomacy; he was also presenting a moral challenge and reminder to other democratic nations. A look
On a peaceful day in the open Pacific Ocean to the east of Taiwan, a US carrier and five accompanying warships were slowly sailing to guard the western Pacific. Another carrier battle group had just returned to its home port in San Diego. Suddenly, alarms went off as many intercontinental ballistic missiles were launched from the interior of China, flying toward Taiwan. Numerous Chinese warships, carriers, fighter jets, bombers and submarines were fast converging on the US ships. Not too long after, missiles, bombs and torpedoes were fired at the US carrier. The surprise to Americans was the number of
Having deceived the world about its nuclear capabilities while preparing for an arms race, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is now using its increasing nuclear forces for virtual nuclear coercion. This new threat will continue until the United States, Japan, and Taiwan can restore the CCP’s sense of fear. This dynamic is a familiar one for Taiwan. As the CCP’s People’s Liberation Army’s (PLA) capabilities have grown, its inhibitions about conducting larger and more frequent coercive military demonstrations have shrunk. The PLA now more openly practices for the destruction of Taiwan’s democracy and the murder of its citizens. In the nuclear realm,
The Tokyo Olympics will perhaps be remembered as one of the oddest Games in the event’s long and checkered history. Held amid a global pandemic, spectators are banned from most venues, leaving athletes to play out their feats of sporting brilliance in eerie silence. Meanwhile, furious Tokyo residents wave placards outside some venues, calling for the Games’ cancelation. Adding to the incongruity of it all, the entire Russian team is absent, banned due to a doping scandal. That the Tokyo Olympics went ahead at all has been extremely contentious in Japan. Critics fear a mass outbreak of the highly contagious Delta