Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Pan Greens call for Demonstration on Arms Purchases on Sept 25

The Taipei Times reports that the Pan-Green Alliance will stage a major march to support the arms purchases:

Since a bill that would allow Taiwan to purchase three major weapons systems from the US has been blocked by the pan-blue alliance in the legislature 26 times, a pro-independence group yesterday announced that it will launch a "large-scale" march on Sept. 25 in Taipei City to call on the opposition parties to abandon their boycott of the bill.

We'll definitely be there. Orchid Island, will you be? And the Budding Sino-analyst? After all, if you are gonna ride the bus, ya gotta pay! Here's what we're protesting for:

The special arms procurement budget bill is designed to provide the funding for Taiwan to purchase three PAC-3 Patriot anti-missile batteries, 12 P-3C Orion maritime patrol aircraft and eight diesel-electric submarines from the US. The purchase of the items would cost NT$480 billion (US$15 billion).

I don't believe these are the weapons Taiwan needs (I'd much rather see 350 aircraft and a mess of spare parts), but if we want protection, as Lee Teng-hui said, ya gotta pay.

The paper also reports that the PFP is supporting the purchase, if the defense budget is increased.

The party said that it would back the arms plan if it is made part of the annual budget and if national defense spending is increased to 3 percent of GDP
More good news. See you in Taipei on the 25th!


Budding Sinologist said...

I'll be out of the country at the time. I can't help but wonder if my attendance would help or hurt the cause. Not too many people would trust an American saying: "No this isn't about America, this is about Taiwan's needs." Most locals ignore any poltical/foreign policy comments I make anyways. They tend to be amazed I can name the major political parties, so I guess that explains how highly they hold the thoughts of a foreigner around these parts.

Mutantfrog said...

Hey, I'm already in Taipei and I always like watching a good protest. Drop me a line if you're gonna be in town.

Michael Turton said...

I'll be there! I'll see if I can remember to drop you a line.

Raphael Muszynski said...

There are different opinions on this subject.