PRC United Front and political warfare efforts against Taiwan's DPP are intensifying
Amid signs of a consolidating identity among Taiwan’s youth and the increasingly likely prospect of a victory by the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in the January 2016 elections, China’s Communist Party propaganda department is ramping up its efforts to cultivate a pro-unification sentiment within the island-nation’s population. And this time, foreign academics — American ones in particular — also appear to be on the target list.
Ironically, the information about this latest effort by Beijing comes to us courtesy of reports in the China Review News (CRNTT, 中國評論通訊社), a Hong Kong-based publication associated with the China Association for Promotion of Chinese Culture (CAPCC, 中華文化發展促進會), a key platform of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) General Political Department Liaison Department (GPD/LD) that has spearheaded Beijing’s political warfare campaign across the Taiwan Strait. Since its inception in 2001, the CAPCC, working in conjunction with a loose constellation of entities, media outlets, NGOs and think tanks, has organized numerous forums, conferences, and cultural events to promote the “peaceful” unification of Taiwan with China by targeting Taiwanese officials, military personnel, students, and ordinary citizens.
Although much of its political warfare effort has been directed at the Taiwanese, China has also used its resources to isolate Taiwan within the international community and turn world opinion against Taiwanese independence and, by default, the DPP. Up until recently, however, China’s political warfare campaign against Taiwan appears to have been conducted in mostly ad hoc fashion and whenever opportunities arose.
That might be about to change, with the recent creation of a new U.S.-based think tank known as the Asia Pacific Affairs Foundation (USA) (亞洲太平洋事務基金會(美國)), which may represent a first step in the institutionalization of Chinese lobbying efforts in the U.S.
My article, published today on the University of Nottingham's China Policy Institute Blog, continues here.