Tuesday, July 05, 2011

A mirage of cross-strait peace

What should be clear to Ma is that the ‘separation’ is the product of far more than accidents of history or a family feud — it is a choice

Touting his achievements while addressing the Central Advisory Committee of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) on Sunday, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) turned to rhetoric that sounded far more like wishful thinking than statements of fact, which raises questions about his vision for Taiwan’s future.

The first bump occurred when he said that thanks to his policy of rapprochement with China over the past three years, war in the Taiwan Strait “has already become history.”

Not only did this ignore the massive military buildup that is taking place across the Strait, it also purported to read into a future that remains rife with uncertainty. Whether there is war in the Strait will be contingent on a number of variables over which Ma has little control, including political developments in China and the choice of 23 million Taiwanese as to whether they would accept being ruled by the Chinese Communist Party (CCP). Although Ma has vowed not to seek unification, Beijing has repeatedly made it clear that its patience on the matter is not infinite.

My unsigned editorial, published today in the Taipei Times, continues here.

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