Japan has donated an additional 1 million doses of COVID-19 vaccine; donations by TSMC, Hon Hai and other private organizations are in progress; and government purchases continue to be delivered. All these efforts provide strong support for Taiwan’s pandemic prevention effort.
Although the COVID-19 situation remains serious, the pandemic will eventually pass. When it does, the post-pandemic global political landscape, the economic and trade environment, and Taiwan’s political situation will take on new forms. There will be no going back.
The most important change will be the geopolitical battle that takes shape between the democratic camp — Europe, the US, Japan and others — and the sphere of influence of the Chinese “empire” and its digital dictatorship, forming a clear-cut confrontation.
In the past, the international community has often put practical considerations ahead of values in its desire for access to the Chinese market and its hopes that China moves toward democracy in step with economic development.
As a result, advanced democracies have often tolerated China’s human rights abuses, including persecution of ethnic minorities, and its authoritarian dictatorship. This has allowed China to deceive the world by hiding behind a mask of reform and opening up.
While China has taken economic advantage of the Western world, it has also stepped up its internal dictatorship and external expansionism as it grows rapidly into a monster.
The discrepancy between ideal and reality has prompted the Western world to gradually wake up to the deadly risk posed by communist China. One result was a trade dispute launched by former US president Donald Trump to expose China’s unfair trade practices.
This was followed by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) taking advantage of the pandemic to launch its “wolf warrior” diplomacy and using it to support its hegemonic goals, which in turn made the democratic camp cooperate to counteract China.
This confrontation came at the height of the CCP’s populist campaign to promote the “great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation” while Western societies were suffering the ravages of the pandemic.
This led to a sudden intensification of the conflict, making it impossible to mend the widening cracks in the geopolitical map. The post-pandemic world will likely be divided into pro-China and anti-China camps.
Why is the pandemic changing the global economy and trade? The key lies in China’s rapid rise, which relies mainly on foreign capital to expand production, increase employment and create economic growth. This is being packaged as “reform and opening up,” but in reality China is using capitalism to develop its brand of socialism.
However, China is using policy, tax concessions and capital to foster its domestic industry — even condoning copycats, counterfeiting and theft of intellectual property rights — and dumping products on the global market at low prices while setting high market entry barriers to foreign competition.
After China’s accession to the WTO, such unfair trade patterns have not improved, and China has not converged with the global economic and trade order.
On the contrary, China has leveraged calls for “free trade” to demand that other countries open their markets, while using protectionism to block foreign competition. China’s unfair treatment of its competitors has had a severe impact on the economic development of its rivals and widened the wealth gap.
In addition, COVID-19 has infected more than 180 million people worldwide and caused nearly 4 million deaths, but China has not engaged in any kind of self-reflection nor apologized.
Instead, it has suppressed Xinjiang and Hong Kong and increased its external military expansionism, while threatening Taiwan and other countries in Northeast Asia and around the South China Sea. This behavior finally triggered a global wave of anti-China sentiment.
Another post-pandemic change will be the international challenge to China’s obsession with the “one China” principle as China pursues a hegemonic approach to incorporate Taiwan into its territory at any cost.
In the past, Western countries obsessed with the Chinese market have either turned a blind eye to Beijing’s bullying of Taiwan or issued feeble formal protest statements, but failed to offer Taiwan strong and just support.
Today, Taiwan upholds the universal values of democracy and freedom, which are cherished and treated as invaluable by the West.
Moreover, many Western countries, such as Australia, have been subjected to a silent Chinese invasion, almost becoming de facto economic colonies, with their national security under serious threat.
The West has finally realized that the battle with China is a battle for survival, and it is only after this realization that it has come forward to confront China and support Taiwan.
Western countries see peace in the Taiwan Strait as a cornerstone of world stability. In the post-pandemic world, China will no longer be able to do whatever it pleases.
More importantly, a new situation will also unfold in Taiwan after the pandemic. Pro-China forces will be relegated to the sidelines, and will wither and die, as they would no longer be able to create political disturbances.
Certain parties have been unable to integrate into Taiwanese society and accept democratic values, and these parties continue to have a residual party-state ideology and pro-China political stance.
They might have been able to conceal their positions in the past, but as Chinese military aircraft continually harass Taiwan while China engineers vaccine chaos, Taiwanese see the true nature of the CCP. Taiwanese have become more determined to never accept the CCP’s temptations and threats as they endeavor to ensure Taiwan’s prosperity, dignity and security.
As Taiwanese see through the evil intentions of the CCP, they also find that there is a group of people in Taiwan who ignore national security and dance along with the demonic voice of the CCP, opposing the nation and promoting the CCP’s attempts to send chaos to Taiwan.
These pro-China forces are bound to fail, and when they do, it will demonstrate the post-pandemic advancement of Taiwanese society and the clearing of the political virus.
Translated by Perry Svensson
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