The Taiwan Tail Wags the American Dog

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For the past two years Chen Shui-bian, aka “A-Bian,” has been
playing George W. Bush, aka “Dubya,” for a fool. This smarmy little
buffoon, with his pasty white “wei yu du” (“tunafish belly”),
has been able to treat the Commander in Chief of the World’s Only
Remaining Superpower as his patsy, and American GIs as the Taiwan
independence movement’s toy soldiers. Why has Chen been able to
get away with this? Because on April 25, 2001, George W. Bush
unwittingly issued the Taiwan tail an open invitation to wag the
American dog.


Cover Art for the uncannily prophetic Political Satire,
the Dog

Why does
a dog wag its tail? Because a dog is smarter than its tail. If
the tail was smarter, the tail would wag the dog.

the Dog
(1997, directed by Barry Levinson,
written by Larry Beinhart and Hilary Henkin)

issues A-Bian a Blank Check

pledges whatever it takes to defend Taiwan
April 25, 2001
CNN White House Correspondent Kelly Wallace

(CNN) – U.S. President George W. Bush on Tuesday said that
the United States would do “whatever it took to help Taiwan
defend herself” in the event of attack by [mainland] China.

Bush’s comments
were made during an interview taped for ABC’s Good Morning America.
Asked if Washington had an obligation to defend Taiwan, Bush said:
“Yes, we do, and the Chinese must understand that.” Asked
whether the United States would use “the full force of the
American military,” Bush responded, “Whatever it took
to help Taiwan defend herself.”

“If China
decides to use force, the United States must help Taiwan defend
itself,” then Governor Bush said on March 2, 2000.

Bush restated
that under the 1979 Taiwan Relations Act, the United States would
help Taiwan defend itself. Asked whether the full force of the
US military would be used to protect Taiwan, White House Press
Secretary Ari Fleischer said, “Obviously, he’s not ruling
it out… he’s saying whatever it took.”

Bush said
it was time to remove the ambiguity about US policy toward Taiwan.
Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld and Deputy Defense Secretary
Paul Wolfowitz are outspoken advocates of removing Washington’s
ambiguity when it comes to defending Taipei from Beijing.

to Their Animosity

Nation, which indulges towards another an habitual hatred, or
an habitual fondness, is in some degree a slave. It is a slave
to its animosity or to its affection, either of which is sufficient
to lead it astray from its duty and its interest.

George Washington, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

Bush, Cheney,
Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz thought they were talking exclusively
to Beijing. They completely forgot Taipei was hanging on every
word they uttered.

Bush, Cheney,
Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz thought they were merely delivering a
“long overdue” and “well-deserved” ultimatum to the “Bullies of
Beijing.” They never realized that such an ultimatum to Beijing
was a two-sided coin, a double-edged sword.

It never
occurred to Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz that such an
ultimatum was simultaneously a blank check made out to Taiwan
independence opportunists ever eager to harness US rightwingers’
habitual hatred of China for their own ends.

Taiwan independence
Quislings have, as the old joke among Sinologists or “China experts”
goes, long been “ready to fight to the last American GI.”

Did I say
ready to fight to the last American GI? Former US ambassador
Charles W. Freeman has rightly complained that Taiwan independence
Quislings are unseemingly eager to fight to the last
American GI.

Relations and the Taiwan Issue, by Charles W. Freeman, Jr.

As American
Founding Father George Washington so presciently observed, Bush,
Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Wolfowitz were “slaves to their animosity”
of an imaginary “Yellow Peril” and a non-existent “China Threat.”

How does
one avoid being a slave to ones’ habitual hatred or habitual fondness?



passionate attachment of one Nation for another produces a variety
of evils. Sympathy for the favourite nation, facilitating the
illusion of an imaginary common interest… where no real common
interest exists… betrays the former into a participation in
the quarrels and Wars of the latter, without adequate inducement
or justification.

George Washington, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796

In order
for the US government to cease being a slave to its habitual hatred
or habitual fondness, America’s political leaders must exclude
permanent, inveterate antipathies against political entities such
as mainland China, and passionate attachments for others such
as Taiwan.

In order
for These United States to cease being an American dog wagged
by a Taiwan tail, America’s political leaders must cultivate just
and amicable feelings for all.

political leaders must repudiate the crudely Manichean “Either
you are with us, or you are with the terrorists” mindset
expressed in George W. Bush’s post 9-11 speech before a joint
session of Congress.

As George
Washington admonished future generations of Americans 208 years

inveterate antipathies against particular Nations and passionate
attachments for others should be excluded… in place of them
just and amicable feelings towards all should be cultivated.”

Then and
only then, will America’s political leaders emancipate the Republic
of the Framers from self-destructive, self-imposed slavery to
special interests, foreign and domestic.

I said it
was simple. I didn’t say it was easy.

8, 2004

Chu [send him mail] is
an American architect of Chinese descent registered to practice
in Texas. Currently living and working in Taiwan, Chu is the son
of a retired high-ranking diplomat with the ROC (Taiwan) government.
His column, “The Strait Scoop” is published on his website, The
China Desk

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