For some reason, I occasionally find myself reading editorials in the KMT's mouthpiece, the Central Daily News. Perhaps it's because the paper sometimes says what the Ma administration won't announce from the podium. Here is the article I read today.
The editorial mocks DPP positions on the ECFA; denigrates Lee Teng-hui's "two countries" and Chen Shui-bian's "one side, one country" formulations as "not only completely unworkable but bound to bring about disastrous consequences;" and finally notes that shooting for de jure independence is sure to bring economic ruin and war.
But what really caught my eye was the final paragraph, where the writer throws a curve ball:
Up to this point, the two sides of the Taiwan Strait have had the wisdom to define their relations as a unique, non-international and non-domestic relationship. Thus agreements have been signed on the principles of equality and mutual respect by [Taiwan's] Straits Affairs Foundation [SEF] and [China's] Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Straits [ARATS]. The agreements have been mutually beneficial and won the praise of the international community, just as the ECFA has. Taiwan independence supporters, though, continue to blow hot air about dealing [with "the mainland"] on a nation-to-nation basis. The Taiwanese people have already experienced the tangible benefits of setting aside political differences, fostering warm economic relations, and reducing the danger of a military conflict. If the independence supporters keep mouthing the same old platitudes, they will not win any hearts or minds.It is obviously and pointedly false to suggest that China views relations with Taiwan as anything other than domestic, unless you ignore everything they say about the subject.
兩岸如今都有智慧把雙方關係定位為非國際、亦非國內的特殊關係，故以海基、海協兩會來進行協商簽署，合乎對等、尊嚴原則，互蒙其利，亦獲國際社 會讚賞，ＥＣＦＡ也是一樣。獨派卻仍鼓吹以國與國來處理兩岸關係。台灣人民已體驗到了兩岸政治上擱置爭議、經濟上合作互惠、軍事上化解危機的實際利益，獨 派再唱其陳腔濫調，是不會有市場的。
But far more baffling is when the CDN tries to suggest the KMT defines relations [with China] as a unique, non-international and non-domestic relationship.
When was that the definition? Certainly not in 2008 when Ma drew a firestorm of criticism for saying relations were "a non-international, special relationship." Certainly not today, when fantasies of China recognizing a "shared sovereignty" situation are the domain of deluded academics. In fact, there's not a peep about "non-domestic" anywhere.
To prove the point, go search for the Chinese phrase "non-domestic special relationship" (非國內的特殊關係). That search turns up only this CDN article. Even when broken up into two phrases,"non-domestic" and "special relationship," we see nothing else about this topic on the internet. This terminology is newly minted, not official policy, and certainly not the policy of both China and Taiwan.
Why would the official KMT mouthpiece make up one definition of a policy -- one where nuance in phrasing matters a lot -- when the KMT has a different official policy? Is the editor simply living in la-la land? Does he have access to insider information about progress in negotiations with China? Is he making an effort to fool the public in Taiwan (presumably because people don't actually have the stomach to accept relations with China as "domestic" yet)? Or what?