Friday, July 10, 2009

Why doesn't the DPP participate in the KMT-CCP Forum in China?

In Taipei, where the conventional wisdom that floats through the city like swamp gas above a moor is little more than a collection of KMT talking points, there is much criticism of the DPP for "objecting for the sake of objecting" or "only being able to object." This tripe is nothing but a KMT talking point meant for unthinking repetition.

Here is a translation of the DPP statement on the issue whether to attend the cross-strait forum:
Regarding DPP Chair Tsai Ing-wen's proposal concerning the invitation sent by the Chair of the National Association of City and County magistrates to DPP officials to attend the KMT-CCP Forum, the Central Executive Committee unanimously mandated that DPP headquarters make it clear to all who might be rash enough to want to attend this KMT-CCP Forum that the DPP forbids any former DPP official who is still a DPP member and any present DPP official from attending this meeting. Any one who does attend will be disciplined according to Party regulations. This action is being taken in order to declare the DPP's position on support for Taiwan's sovereignty.

The deputy party spokesperson said that, in the Central Executive Committee meeting, Chair Tsai had said that it is clear to anyone who examines this issue that the KMT-CCP Forum is a private give-and-take between the two parties, and it damages and undermines Taiwan's democracy and our nation's institutional system. DPP members should not be associated with this United Front tactic. At a time when the CCP is undertaking a bloody crackdown on the Uyghur people in Xinjiang, a crackdown which has been universally condemned, our DPP members should not give people the false impression that we support the Chinese Communist regime.
What all this says is simple: the DPP is engaged in principled opposition to the sell-out of Taiwan's sovereignty. The reason it won't let its members go to the Cross-Strait Forum is because it is protesting the fact that the talks between "Taiwan" and "China" are actually talks between two political parties completely out of the public view. The entire process is both unprofessional and undemocratic. Talks between Taiwan and China should be handled by official diplomatic personnel trained in international negotiations -- indeed Taiwan has the institutional structure under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) to carry this out -- under the aegis of the government, not the KMT, and overseen by the democratically elected representatives of the people, the legislature and the President.

None of this is happening. As the international media will never report, the whole process is a mockery of democratic governance.

One longtime analyst observed privately to me: "The DPP would simply be being used in this situation, if it chose to attend. "Squeezed like a lemon and then thrown away" is the term that comes to mind. Not unlike, of course, what the CCP did in its United Front tactics of the past with the KMT. One could see the 'blue' papers in Taiwan blaring the headline "DPP agrees with KMT-CCP Forum"/ "Full Steam Ahead Says the DPP" and the 'red' papers in China blaring, "Splittists Come to their Senses!" "We are all Chinese Now!" etc."

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11 comments:

David said...

Even the KMT's favourite attack dog had words of caution regarding the forum. From the Taipei Times.

KMT Legislator Chiu Yi (邱毅), however, objected to government officials attending the forum.

“The KMT-CCP forum is between the two parties. Given the need to separate the party’s affairs from the government’s, I believe it is inappropriate for government officials to take part in the forum,” Chiu told reporters at the legislature.

Chiu said that communication between Taiwanese and Chinese officials should take place at negotiations between the semi-­official Straits Exchange Foundation and China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait.

Readin said...

I agree entirely with the sentiment that "the talks between "Taiwan" and "China" are actually talks between two political parties completely out of the public view. The entire process is both unprofessional and undemocratic. Talks between Taiwan and China should be handled by official diplomatic personnel trained in international negotiations -- indeed Taiwan has the institutional structure under the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) to carry this out -- under the aegis of the government, not the KMT, and overseen by the democratically elected representatives of the people, the legislature and the President."

But is that your reason or is it the DPP's? You say that is the reason the DPP won't attend, but that reasoning is not presented in your lengthy quote of the DPP statement.

If those are indeed the DPP's reasons for not attending, why don't they say so?

Thomas said...

Wouldn't the CCP's invitation to DPP members also serve to entice members who are seeking to cash in on the prospect of "warming ties" in their constituencies? I think there is also an attempt here to weaken the DPP even further.

My Chinese teacher asked me a few weeks ago what was wrong with contacts that happened outside of the official channels. He specifically brought up the case of Chen Chu. My response was that Chen was representing her city while promoting an international sporting event that her city is holding. It is normal for a mayor to promote events that happen in his or her city. However, Chen was not attempting to represent all of Taiwan when she visited. That role should fall on the shoulders of the MOFA and SEF, and the KMT is neither in itself.

Chen got a popularity boost from the trip because she refused to cave into the propraganda requirements of the CCP, but it wouldn't be difficult to wrongly attribute the popularity boost to the fact that she went to China rather than the nature of her performance while she was there.

So when I consider the two ex-DPP/DPP members who are going to the KMT-CCP exchange, I can't help but wonder: 他们到底干什么? The only motivation I can see is a desire to improve their own popularity. And if more DPP members do this -- participate for the sake of their own popularity rather than the good of the country -- it makes the divisive work of the KMT and CPP much easier.

Therefore, I think Tsai's response, or at least the part I saw quoted, was lacking in something important. She should have more clearly emphasized the undemocratic nature of the talks and said that, while the DPP may not be opposed to some forms of contact, only forms of contact that are conducted through the constitutionally mandated channels, that are conducted in good faith and that don't denigrate sovereignty would be considered.

This would have made the DPP's opposition seem more understandable on more than just contrarian grounds.

Hmph... Tsai seems to be doing an ok job, but does anyone else think that she never quite seals the deal? Of course, I am no insider by far. For all I know, she might be doing phenominally with the resources she has...

Anonymous said...

It would be an instructive homework assignment for everyone to watch the entire Star Wars saga as a useful analogy.

For example, with the KMT-CCP forum -- let's not forget what Darth Sidious (Supreme Chancellor Palpatine) did to the "loyal" Trade Federationists at the end.

Michael Turton said...

Readin:

it's what the DPP says:

"Chair Tsai had said that it is clear to anyone who examines this issue that the KMT-CCP Forum is a private give-and-take between the two parties, and it damages and undermines Taiwan's democracy and our nation's institutional system."

I'm just elaborating so everyone is clear.

Anon, I often warn supporters of the DPP that authoritarians always kill their supporters, but you know how it is, everyone feels that "it won't be me." Or, hilariously, they think these guys aren't a bunch of authoritarians.

Michael

Maoman said...

Finally! Some ideology! The one thing the DPP can immediately offer Taiwan is unwavering principle. I applaud and support this stance, and hope that it doesn't falter.

Jerry said...

The reason is the DPP do not represent the people so why should they be included.The people voted the DPP out, Thank God. Jerry

Marc said...

It's noble of the DPP. I wonder, however, what the long term plan is after the KMT and CCP have divided the spoils? How will DPP save Taiwan's sovereignty?

Anonymous said...

after taiwan became owned by chinese nazis and mainland industrial control all of you losers are still siting on own fat arses and ask yourself about the status quo and DPP coruption.. i think if US fathers were that retarded like taiwanese the world were still british. and we all were speaking english from New York trouth Beijing, Moscou and Berlin..

Anonymous said...

Hi Michael:

I thought you may be interested in this NYTimes map of minority groups in China. Notice Taiwan included in the map in a gray color (but no other bordering regions included): http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2009/07/10/world/20090711-xinjiang.html

I wrote a letter complaining, but so far haven't gotten any response.

Anonymous said...

BEIJING - MAINLAND Chinese and Taiwanese delegates to a cultural forum on Sunday urged the two rivals to adopt the same Chinese-language technical terms and ease restrictions on journalists reporting in each other's territories.

http://www.straitstimes.com/Breaking%2BNews/Asia/Story/STIStory_402166.html


looks like chinese dick going deeper into taiwanese status quo..