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Sep 25, 2009

I had missed this

Lien Chan, honorary chairman of the KMT, says that now is the time for Taiwan and China to begin considering political negotiations. While it's too early on the Taiwan side to sign a treaty due to domestic politics, both sides should begin considering the political talks, which "must be faced sooner or later."

Video of Lien's speech (in English) here.

He calls specifically for confidence building measures and a peace treaty. One goal was particularly striking to me:


...first, the foundation of a peace agreement is the 92 consensus, or the "one China" principle as outlined in the ROC constitution. The two sides should sign a interim agreement. And second, the peace agreement should clearly state that the state of hostility between the two sides of the strait is over.
I'm pulled in by the words interim agreement that "preserves the status quo," especially if that somehow involves an indirect admission that the ROC exists. I will withhold my judgment on the details until we see a document emerge. Most important of all is that any such agreement needs to go in front of people by referendum.

To be perfectly honest, there are scenarios I can foresee where such an agreement may be the best bet for Taiwan and most effective way to forestall any more moves toward political unification, even given the CCP and KMT understanding of the agreement as being a stepping stone to unification.


Thomas said...

I don't know. You may have a point about using such an agreement to ensure Taiwan's security. However, such an agreement would have to be brokered by a neutral party. There is no way Beijing would allow such an agreement to be signed unless it committed Taiwan to an inferior position and imposed a timeline.

I would also note that if you want to withhold judgement of such an agreement until you see the text of the agreement, that is up to you. However, I would urge you to look at the source of this comment. I highly doubt that the agreement that Lien Chan has in mind is one that would preserve Taiwan's status and dignity. I would also urge you to note that such comments by Lien, in any other country, would be considered treasonous.

It is one thing to accept a compromise after much negotiation when you don't have a choice, but it is another to give in before any negotiation started, and stil another thing to promote such a view among your countrymen.

阿牛 said...

Very fair Thomas, and I agree that what Lien Chan has in mind is not what I have in mind. Perhaps, though, we'll get lucky on the final result! Or not.

Richard said...

Where was this speech made? It makes some difference depending on where he made it, but obviously we all know what he said there is what he hopes for in the end anyways. But, where he says it is a clue to how fast they see themselves moving towards a "political agreement."

阿牛 said...

In the U.S.