Taiwan Can't Be Fooled At least not by the Christian Science Monitor

The Christian Science Monitor Meddles in China’s Politics

“The U.S. major media and much of the minor media are not free and independent, as they claim. They are not the watchdog of democracy but the lapdog of the national security state. They help reverse the roles of victims and victimizers, warmongers and peacekeepers, reactionaries and reformers. The first atrocity, the first war crime committed in any war of aggression by the aggressors is against the truth.” ~ Michael Parenti, political scientist

On May 2, 2005, in a thankfully short article entitled “Taiwan Can’t Be Fooled,” the Christian Science Monitor told the American public that:

“The increasingly rich and well-schooled Taiwanese [emphasis added] aren’t like the mainland’s 700 million, little-educated peasants whom the communist leaders usually manipulate. Yet last week Beijing treated the people of Taiwan [emphasis added] like dupes by meddling in their politics in a foolhardy way… These crude good-cop bad-cop antics by China [emphasis added] only further Taiwan’s [emphasis added] steady drift away from the mainland in everything but business ties.

How can one keep from laughing out loud, when the Christian Science Monitor’s heavy-handed, patronizing spin control so perfectly exemplifies political scientist Michael Parenti’s scathing observation?

How do these lapdogs of the national security state reverse the roles of victims and victimizers, warmongers and peacekeepers, reactionaries and reformers?

They do it the way the Ministry of Truth did it in George Orwell’s dystopian novel, “1984,” by manipulating the language, by playing word games. Veteran China watchers are wise to their tricks, but let’s review them for the benefit of newcomers.

They persistently refer to “Taiwan” as if it were the name of a political entity rather than a geographical region of China, an offshore island of China.

They persistently refer to Chinese citizens on Taiwan as “Taiwanese,” giving Americans the false impression they are citizens of an independent nation of “Taiwan.”

They persistently refer to “China” as if the term applied only to that portion of China under the control of the PRC regime in Beijing.

They persistently refer only to mainland Chinese as “Chinese,” giving Americans the false impression they are different from “Taiwanese,” rather than fellow Chinese who reside in different region of China.

On the mainland side, they contemptuously dismiss 700 million living, breathing, thinking human beings on the Chinese mainland as mindless ciphers that “the communist leaders usually manipulate.”

On the Taiwan side, they duplicitously provide as little coverage as possible to the democratic majority of Pan Blue citizens who are proud of being Chinese, swear heartfelt allegiance to the Republic of China, and resolutely oppose Taiwan independence. Invoking the lapdog media’s own words, they “treat the people of Taiwan like dupes by meddling in their politics in a foolhardy way.”

Why do they do this?

They do not do this unwittingly. They do not do this innocently.

They do this maliciously. They do this to mislead the American public into believing that “Taiwan” is an independent nation rather than an integral part of China. They do this to persuade the American public to go along with applying the same “divide and conquer” strategies against China that were used against Gorbachev’s Russia, Milosevic’s Serbia, and any political entity the US government considers a real or imagined threat to the national security state.

The Christian Science Monitor continues:

“China rolled out the red carpet, literally, for a visit by Taiwan’s opposition leader, Lien Chan. He, like China, opposes formal independence for the island nation and favors eventual reunification. In treating him as a head of state, [emphasis added] and even signing an agreement of common objectives with him, China hopes to isolate Taiwan’s current president, Chen Shui-bian, who talks of officially accepting the reality of an independent Taiwan. [emphasis added] China’s autocrats can’t seem to accept that Taiwan is a democracy in which the people have voted for Mr. Chen twice, and against Mr. Lien. [emphasis added] They also must think they can act kindly toward Taiwanese politicians [emphasis added] they favor while aiming hundreds of missiles at the island and recently passing a law that threatens war if Taiwan [emphasis added] moves toward formal statehood.”

Ironically, Lien Chan is a head of state. Lien Chan is the actual winner of the March 2004 Presidential Election. Lien is in fact President Lien of the Republic of China. The only reason he isn’t currently occupying the Office of the ROC President is that unlike Viktor Yushchenko, who was “Our Man in Kiev,” Lien was too proud to be “Our Man in Taipei,” i.e., a willing puppet of the US.

Just before departing for the South Pacific, Chen Shui-bian, green with envy at Lien Chan’s wildly successful Journey of Peace, told reporters that “No matter which Taiwan party or individuals China prefers to talk to, it ultimately has to talk to the leader chosen by Taiwan people and the government of Taiwan.”

I’m sure the 53% majority of ROC voters who cast their ballots for Lien Chan on election day 2004 got a good laugh at that, considering the fact that mainland China, in talking to Lien Chan, was talking to the leader chosen by the Chinese people on Taiwan and the government of the Republic of China!

Even more ironically, ersatz president Chen Shui-bian is at this very moment considering following in Lien Chan’s footsteps. Chen is talking of officially accepting the reality of One China, traveling to Beijing, signing an interim peace treaty, thereby ensuring his place in the Pantheon of Nobel Peace Prize Laureates.

This is why Taiwan independence fundamentalist Lee Teng-hui recently held a press conference during which he complained he hadn’t been able to sleep for days. The editors of the Christian Science Monitor are way behind the curve. They really need to get a clue. They need to log on to the internet and check out some websites other than their own.

Taiwan is not a democracy. Taiwan is a cronyist dictatorship la the Philippines under Marcos, or Indonesia under Suharto, with the external trappings of a democracy. ROC voters on Taiwan have not “voted for Mr. Chen twice, and against Mr. Lien.”

To see whom ROC voters on Taiwan actually voted for, see:

The Christian Science Monitor concludes:

“Lien’s visit, however, did carry some historic symbolism. He’s head of the KMT party, or Nationalists, who lost China to the communists in 1949 and fled to Taiwan. He’s the first KMT leader to return to the mainland since the civil war ended with Mao Tse-tung’s victory. His party still controls Taiwan’s legislature. [emphasis added] But Beijing wins no point by pretending to put the civil war memories aside and welcoming Lien as an equal. He’s not Taiwan’s duly elected leader. [emphasis added] Unlike in China, Taiwan’s leaders reflect the will of voters, who prefer that their leaders keep their independence of Beijing’s manipulative ways. China will need to talk to Taiwan’s president, no conditions attached, if it wants to be taken seriously by Taiwanese.”

As noted above, Lien Chan is “Taiwan’s duly elected leader,” or more precisely, the Republic of China’s duly elected leader.

As noted above, the shameless pretender squatting in the Presidential Palace does not “reflect the will of voters.”

As noted above, ROC voters “prefer that their leaders keep their independence of [Washington’s] manipulative ways.”

This is why they prefer that Lien Chan and James Soong, the leaders they actually voted for and who actually won, conduct peace negotiations with Beijing based on the well-known “1992 Consensus” of “One China, Two Interpretations.”

For those unfamiliar with the “1992 Consensus,” it stipulates that “There is only one indivisible China. This China includes both Taiwan and the mainland. Beijing will refer to this China as the People’s Republic of China. Taipei will refer to this China as the Republic of China.”

Vox Populi, Vox Dei?

On March 29, 2005, the ERA TV cable channel conducted a public opinion poll, attempting to gauge the Taiwan public’s reaction to Lien Chan’s historic visit. The question asked was:

“Do you approve or disapprove of proceeding with cross-straits negotiations on the basis of “One China, Two Interpretations?”

  • An overwhelming majority of 77% answered “Approve.”
  • A mere 11% answered “Disapprove.”

  • 72% of Pan Green voters, 67% of Neutral voters, and 92% of Pan Blue voters answered “Approve.”
  • 20% of Pan Green voters, 10% of Neutral voters, and 4% of Pan Blue voters answered “Disapprove.”
  • 8% of Pan Green voters, 23% of Neutral voters, and 4% of Pan Blue voters answered “Don’t know.”

ERA TV Poll, conducted March 29, 2005

Alas, you would never know any of this from reading the Christian Science Monitor, because as Michael Parenti noted, “The first atrocity, the first war crime committed in any war of aggression by the aggressors is against the truth.”

Fortunately the increasingly rich and well-schooled Chinese people on Taiwan aren’t the little-educated peasants the Monitor thought it could manipulate. Despite the Monitor’s attempt to treat them like dupes by meddling in their politics in a foolhardy way, the Chinese people on Taiwan could not be fooled, at least not by the Christian Science Monitor.

Unfortunately, these crude antics by media organizations such as the Monitor only further the Chinese people’s increasing alienation from and disillusionment with the America they once admired.

May 4, 2005

Bevin 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.