The New Year began with a barrage of salvos across the Taiwan Straits between China’s President Xi Jinping and the Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen. Xi Jinping whom I now insist on calling Winnie the Pooh or the Chinese Panda thought that he could make a 40th anniversary speech that would put fear into the hearts of the Taiwanese President and the people. Well, his ears must be burning from the salvo’s that came back as Tsai tore into him and his nonsensical comments that the world refuse to accept. Condemnations have come from the U.S, EU and other countries. I am hopeful that we in Saint Lucia will also make a statement of our support for Taiwan and ask Xi Jinping to withdraw the statement he made which was designed to put fear into the hearts of the Taiwanese President and people.
Having heard the threats made by President Xi Jinping of China, President Tsai Ing-wen of Taiwan was resolute and defiant. She literally stood taller than her compatriot across the
Taiwan Straits. She showed to the world that she was a no nonsense lady, one who is clearly prepared to stand her ground and battle with the Chinese president toe to toe regardless of his bully boy tactics and threats. Oh! her response to him was music to my ears because it was explicit and to the point. She was already a lady that I admired but her stance immediately reminded me of the scriptures which tells us the tale of David and Goliath. That is the analogy of Taiwan and China.
President Tsai showed her people that she was a true leader in the face of adversity and blatant arrogance and bully boy tactics in the speech made by Xi Jinping on the fortieth anniversary of the so called “Message to Compatriots in Taiwan”. The gall of that man to propose further exploration of a “one country, Two systems” scenario for Taiwan was simply ridiculous and arrogance personified. The disrespect I have of the individual or the CCP is beyond belief. They simply fail to understand that Taiwan is an independent country, a democratic one at that and one that ranks for its size very high in the world rankings.
In my view with the bold threats made by Xi Jinping the United States must make it clear to the whole world that it recognizes the ROC per se although I would rather the name Taiwan so that it is not mistaken with the Xi Jinping China. He has been ramping up pressure on the Tsai’s administration over her refusal to accept the so-called 1992 consensus a vague notion, accepted by President Tsai’s predecessor that posits that Taiwan and China are part of the same country, with each side allowed its own interpretation of what that China is. However, Xi Jinping has made it clear in his speech that there is only one China and that is the country across the Taiwan straits which he is the Emperor designate.
In his speech Xi Jinping urged Taiwan to avoid a dead end and accept his offer of the one country two system framework under which Honk Kong has operated since Britain returned it to Chinese rule in 1997. Xi Jinping knows and he made it clear that Hong Kong was China’s to do as they please and therefore never kept the agreements that China made to Britain. Taiwan and the whole world saw the duplicity of what Winnie The Pooh or the Chinese Panda was all about. When we look at the two leaders it is clear that we see the Saint and the Devil.
In answer to his speech Tsai made it clear that “China must face the reality of the existence of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and not deny the democratic system that the people of Taiwan have established together that he must respect the commitment of the 23.5 million people of Taiwan who absolutely will not accept “one country, two systems” and must respect Taiwan’s freedom and democracy, and not foster divisions and offer inducements to interfere with the choices made by the people of Taiwan. She went on to emphasize clearly to Winnie that cross strait differences must be handled peacefully, on the basis of equality instead of using suppression and intimidation to get Taiwanese to submit. Lastly she went on to express that there must be governments or government authorized agencies that engage in negotiations. Any political consultations that are not authorized and monitored by the people cannot be called “democratic consultations.” She made it clear that this was Taiwan’s position, a democratic position.
The President of Taiwan emphasized to Winnie that Taiwan has faithfully fulfilled its duty as a member of the regional community, actively contributing to cross-strait and regional peace and stability. She made it clear that Taiwan does not provoke but uphold their principles. She emphasized and made it clear that people of Taiwan have suffered many forms of suppression but have never abandoned their fundamental position and commitments regarding cross-strait relations. She reminded Xi Jinping and his cohorts in the CCP that a superpower must act with the demeanor and take the responsibility of a superpower and that the international society was watching China to see if it can make changes and become a trustworthy partner.
The thrust of Tsai speech must have been the arrow that pierce Xi Jinping’s heart when she said that “a so called “spiritual union” should be built on mutual respect and understanding, with governments on both sides of the strait handling issues regarding the peoples welfare pragmatically, such as the urgent swine fever epidemic we are now facing”. The President made it clear to Xi Jinping, that pressuring international corporations to change their designation from Taiwan won’t bring about a spiritual union, nor buying off Taiwan’s diplomatic allies or circling Taiwan with military aircraft and naval vessels.
She made it clear to him that “democratic values are the values and way of life that Taiwanese cherish, and we call upon China to bravely move towards democracy. This is the only way they can truly understand Taiwanese people’s ideas and commitments”. I applaud the lady in all sincerity and felt rather emotional in writing this article and tears flowed from my eyes. Having studied the two countries in depth I do understand the thrust of her speech in answer to the muddled and incoherent speech made by Xi Jinping or Winnie.
President Tsai showed her people that she was a true leader in the face of adversity, blatant arrogance and bully boy tactics made by a very troubled man. His gross disrespect to the Taiwanese people showed the menace he is to world peace when he threatens Taiwan with military force. This in my view is reprehensible counterproductive and just plain stupid when the whole world is watching and listening to threats of this magnitude. His provocation now risk the stability of the region and his display against a democratic country will now put the spotlight on China’s moves and actions and therefore he has failed to understand and realize the harm he has done to the peace across the Taiwan’s strait.
I say to Winnie the Pooh that the world is watching you and your compatriots the CCP because any action by you will definitely precipitate a third World War. Sir you have enough on your plate internally especially on the economic front. You will become isolated if you dare show any form of military attitude towards Taiwan. It is alleged that you tried to subvert the island’s November 2018 elections. These allegations merit being investigated because it is clearly attempts to subvert democracy in Taiwan and could be repeated in other countries of the world.
In concluding let me say that Tsai’s assertive tone to Winnie was well received in Washington. Some have made the point that “they have seen Taiwan as a like-minded partner” and who is the thorn in China’s side in its thrust for influence in the area. I therefore call on America and the rest of the world to recognize the ROC, if not Taiwan because Xi Jinping then will have got the message that Taiwan is not a domestic issue but that any interference on Taiwan will be an act against a fully democratic country. The UN must also not appease China but make it clear to them that they must respect the people of Taiwan or leave the UN forthwith. The molly cuddling of China must be brought to an end.
Hail Taiwan – Long live Taiwan – Ilha Formosa the Beautiful Island.