Monday, August 04, 2008

Shocked by Chinese Taipei

A squirrel on the NCKU campus.

Captain Renault: I'm shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!
Croupier: Your winnings, sir.

Just last week the President and his KMT cronies were hailing the use of Zhonghua Taipei (Chinese Taipei) to designate Taiwan in the State media in China for the Olympics as a major diplomatic victory. And then today the Taipei Times announced that CCTV had used Zhongguo Taipei (China Taipei).

The Presidential Office yesterday expressed “shock” over China’s description of taekwondo Olympic gold medalist Chu Mu-yen (朱木炎) as being from Zhongguo Taibei, but stopped short of criticizing Beijing.


On Friday, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said official Chinese media had stopped referring to Taiwan as Zhongguo Taibei (中國台北, Taipei, China), using instead Zhonghua Taibei (中華台北, Chinese Taipei), calling the development a diplomatic victory.

Wang yesterday declined to speculate on whether Beijing would repeat the “technical error” while Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Wu Poh-hsiung (吳伯雄) is attending the Games.

Now, I know dear readers, that you are nodding to yourselves: "See? We knew those Chinese would renege on the deal faster than you can say USS Kitty Hawk." Alas, I fear they are keeping the deal...just not the deal that had been openly arranged between Beijing and the government of President Jellyspine Ma....

...for you see, had this been a DPP government, we wouldn't be fighting over Zhongguo or Zhonghua. We'd be drawing the line at Taiwan. So guess what? The CCP and the KMT have neatly arranged it so that everyone in Taiwan is now committed to Chinese Taipei!

That didn't take long, did it?

The term Taiwan has vanished from the lexicon of the sovereignty debate and will from now on be used solely to placate the domestic masses. No doubt it will be resurrected briefly for six weeks in 2012. In the meantime, we've become something like part of China. Not quite there, but this death by a thousand cuts diplomacy is really quite slick. Too bad the KMT can't manage the domestic economy as well as it can handle dismantling all that the DPP fought for over the last eight years.

The second use of this Name Game controversy was obscuring another one: notice that there was almost no local debate over the order in which Taiwan would march in the opening ceremonies. This is classic KMT strategy -- invent/use one controversy to obscure a DPP success or a KMT failure. Taiwan is now marching in the Cs, right after the Central African Republic and right before -- you guessed it -- China Hong Kong and China Macao. Feiren observed to me the other day: remember the Olympic Torch debate that had the Torch coming into Taiwan from a place that wasn't China? The order of Taiwan in the ceremony replicates the Torch path. Only thanks to the noisy controversy about noises, nobody really protested (except for one of Taiwan's Olympic athletes the other day. Someone gets it....and the DPP, of course).

Speaking of the Beijing Olympics, many observers have pointed out how China's use of the Torch to signal the vassalage of the states it passed through replicates Nazi Germany's invention and use of the Torch. But another Nazi-Beijing connection came out today with the story of how Albert Speer Jr, the son of the Nazi production czar, designed the Beijing Olympic venue with his father's plans in mind. Further commentary will now cease, since we have violated Godwin's law most severely....


Anonymous said...

As Washington reaches a state of high excitement over Chinese military espionage, another issue looms large over U.S.-China relations, perhaps even more important to our foreign policy: Beijing is escalating its diplomatic campaign against a U.S. decision to provide theater missile defenses to allies and friends in the region.

channing said...

Here's some small consolation in a big farce:

Technically, each participating Olympic team is a fully independent body. Therefore, the order in which they appear may have psychological implications, but absolutely no technical implications.

skiingkow said...

I truly hope at least one of the Taiwanese athletes will do the right thing and protest (in Beijing) this latest slap in the face by this most ungracious host. During the opening ceremonies, hold up a banner reading, "Taiwan" or something.

The reaction from the Chinese government would be priceless, but the most entertaining aspect of the whole flap would be to see PandaMa's poll numbers dive to the single digits when he again does nothing.

Please...please... let there be a gutsy athlete out there.

Richard said...

Good points. The KMT spawned from China, and thus both have similar characteristics. That is, they both do a lot of hand-waving up front to distract us from other just as important issues.

If the presidential office was "shocked" over this, there's gonna be a lot more "shocking and aweing" about China's "technical errors" in using Zhongguo and other gestures that would infer Taiwan is a part of China.

Anonymous said...

Huh? This article you mention is almost ten years old!

Anonymous said...

Hey! You guys hear all the noise the opposition made when they changed the Postal Service from Taiwan to Chinese?

Anonymous said...


The use of Speer's work in China in old hat. It's been known for years and so is hardly shocking at this juncture in time. For instance it was used as part of the suburban satellite towns of Songjiang near Shanghai for the emerging, wealthy middle classes. As you would know Speer's Volkwagon community was the inspiration for the German Town in Songjiang.

Anonymous said...

I want to vomit every time I hear a KMTard mention the name Taiwan. They've lost all credibility and rights to use this name, imho. The olympic name fiasco is just part of their quisling sellout.

btw, a major event just happened in the USA regarding Chinese economic blackmail. The recent US$800B+ forced buyout (nationalization) of the GSE's Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac was done expediently by Paulson last week because he was economically threaten by the PRC. I've been contemplating this for about a week, but now others have posted about it:

Now we know there was a threat

Fannie's Mudd Soothed Asian Investors as Bonds Rose

US Blackmailed By China?

This is definitely [**NOT**] a good sign for Free Taiwan.


Speaking of the Kittyhawk, there are some interesting comments in this thread on Gordon Chang's blog (including this gem: In 1999 Admiral Dennis Blair referred to Taiwan as “the turd in the punchbowl") Arthor Waldron also participates as well as an insightful navy guy called J.E. Dyer.

Speaking of the Olympics and the Speer connection, here is an interesting photo. One world, one dream!

Sorry for the threadjacking, MT. Great posts lately btw, especially the post about Twn ports.

MJ Klein said...

Taiwan should be nowhere near China, under any circumstances. why the Taiwanese have an Olympic team and participate in this farce is something i will never understand.

do you own thing, on your own soil.

Anonymous said...

Speer's tradition of design csan be read as totalitarianism but heralds from the Beaux Arts which in itself was fundamental to the design of US cities such as Chicago. Indeed it found favour in post-imperial China when Sun He, son of Sun Yat Sen, ordered an American architect, Henry Murphy, to design plans for Guangzhou and Nanjing. Although City Beautifulism didn't affect the central cores of Chinese cities to too great an extent, Shanghai being an exception, it did influence the design of Peking University and the Japanese in Taipei with the design of the campus for NTU.

Anonymous said...

You don't violate Godwin's law, you prove it.'s_law

Anonymous said...

Mainland Chinese netizens have given Ma ying-jeou a nick name:馬娘娘 ,meaning sister Ma,mummy Ma,or sissy Ma.Republic of China,is Taiwan,and vice versa.

Why beat around the bush?This kind of argument remind me of old folk's story:The monkeys trying to work out which is better,3 bananas in the morning better,or 4 bananas.


Anonymous said...

With all this talk of Speer being involved in various architectural projects I was wondering if he had anything thing to do with the "shrine to the Yellow Emperor in Shaanxi Province"? As when I visited this place I have to admit it made me think of various shrines to ultranationalism constructed by Speers Senior for the NAZI party in pre war Germany.

Tim Maddog said...

Does Godwin's Law forbid the mention of goosestepping soldiers at the Olympic opening ceremony? If so, never mind.

If not, here's a little something for comparison. And a little more.

Tim Maddog