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Jul 19, 2010

Special Feature

Despite its rhetorical flair, this article brings up some important issues. So I've decided to translate this Liberty Times opinion piece for you.

[Original text]

Hu pins ECFA with label of "anti-independence, one China;" Will Ma go along?

Reporter Zou Jingwen ╱ Special Feature

"The ECFA is purely an economic issue, unrelated to politics."This remark was made by President Ma Ying-jeou."The common political basis for the signing of the ECFA is opposition to Taiwan independence and the upholding of the '92 consensus. "So says Hu Jintao.

These two statements about the signing of the ECFA are contradictory; whose statement is correct? Does Ma Ying-jeou accept the ECFA's "common political basis?"The government's position has resulted in "one ECFA, two interpretations;" this rhetoric is deceptive, to both ourselves and others.

When Ma Ying-jeou says the ECFA is non-politicial, he is talking to the Taiwanese people. He does not say such things to China. So do these words reflect reality or do they not?

Make no mistake: Hu Jintao brought up this "political foundation" in the presence of Ma's special envoy, Wu Poh-hsiung. These words were uttered for all the world to hear. These words are most sincere.

Now that the ECFA is signed, Hu Jintao has opted to set the tone and thereby deny Ma negotiating cover cover, preparing to force future concessions that go further than "opposing Taiwanese independence and upholding 'One China.'" If these two policies are the ECFA's foundation, they become "reality;" Ma's calls for Hu to "face reality" are naive nonsense. Beijing does not intend to let Taiwan avoid further compromise for the next thousand years.

Hu may have hit this ball into Ma's court, but Ma must not sit idly by; 23 million pairs of eyes are watching him. China has "put this hat on your head" [pinned Ma with this label]. Will you wear it? If you will not, you must refuse it; silence will indicate consent, and those in Taiwan who oppose you will have another righteous reason for doing so.

Asking Ma to "wear the hat" of One China and anti-Taiwan independence, regardless of the color of the hat [A-Gu:that is, regardless of its political character], demonstrates Chinese anticipation that Ma would play innocent and agree, since these policy positions are in Ma's DNA.

The problem is, Ma's campaign promised the voters that "Taiwanese independence is a choice." Not only has that choice been removed, but Ma now wants to tie our hands. He has openly repudiated his own election pledge. Yet how can support for Taiwanese independence be made illegal? Is there an intention to set up a Fascist government?

Even more ridiculous is what "opposing Taiwan independence" entails. Basically, "Taiwan independence" has two meanings. One is that Taiwan is a sovereign independent country.The KMT has said that the ROC is on Taiwan, and that the ROC is a sovereign independent country. We should be able to reason by extension that here in Taiwan we have an independent and sovereign country. Does Ma Ying-jeou oppose this position?

If he does not, then let us consider the second meaning of "Taiwan independence." This is a sovereign independent country, and is also a democratic country, and in democracies all over the world, the people have the right to decide major policies which greatly affect national development. This includes the majority's right to change the national title, flag or anthem.

If one day the people of Taiwan decide that the label "ROC" creates international confusion and problems with our self-identity, and jointly decide to change the country's name to "Taiwan", on what grounds is the KMT so slandering this definition of "Taiwanese independence?"

Ma's parroting the Chinese "one China" position and his cooperation with the Communist Party in opposing Taiwan independence is undermining the basis for Ma's own prosperity. Are these efforts aimed at preparing for a denial of the sovereignty and independence of the "Republic of China?"

Hu has branded the ECFA, and topped it with a red cap. How can Ma Ying-jeou ignore this reality?Ma owes the people an explanation.


Ben Goren said...

That's an important article. Thanks for translating it. It exposes the way ECFA is essentially sold to Taiwanese by their own government as 'a wolf packaged as a sheep'.

ps. spelling in the title should read 'special'?

Richard said...

The conundrums surrounding the ECFA (not sure if conundrum is the correct word to use here) are so numerous it's quite disheartening to see the people of Taiwan pretty much stand-by while ECFA gets steam-rolled into legislation. It's as if Taiwan media is being censored such that the comments made by Hu and the rest of his communist party regarding the ECFA are not being heard in Taiwan!