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As a Taiwan native I am somewhat disturbed by your snide comments. How about you offering a "viable cross-strait strategy to end the stalemate." Where are the "champions of democracies" like US, Australia, etc offering resolute support for Taiwan? When is YOUR government going sponsor Taiwan for membership in UN?

Championing for democracy is nice and all, but we can not do it without help. And seeing how nobody is going to help, Taiwan only to help itself. As much as i like democracy I don't want missiles raining down on ourselves. People need a viable economy to feed their family.

I don't know what is the solution to these problem, so you care to share yours?

I do apologize if your government did support Taiwan's membership in UN. I'll apologize twice too. First, as said before for assuming your government didn't support taiwan. Second for feeling sorry for coming from such an ass of a pseudo-nation that has diplomatic relation with Taiwan.

Sorry, I don't have a McGyver-type solution to Taiwan's isolation. If there were easy solutions, they would already have been implemented.

But I do think that scorn is merited for those who counsel an adversary hasn't so much as fired a single shot.

One thing China is admired for a its pragmatism. If China can use "Socialism with Chinese Characteristics" to feed hundreds of millions of people, I think we can find our own solutions if politicans are not resorting to dogmas every time China comes up. I used to support DPP 5 years ago but one can clearly see their China policy are always some knee-jerk reaction. Say what you will about KMT's visit earlier this year, but I and my friend all breath a sigh of relief.

My biggest beef with "democracy advocates" is that they are sitting on the sideline in safety egging on DPP to take a "resolute stand" in a dangerous and irreponsible game of brinksmanship. But in the end, honestly, people just want to live in peace and watching one's livelihood being put on the table in some sort of dangerous game is no way to live in peace.

Why I am voting for KMT on China policy:

With KMT in power I know 95 percent that in 20 years status quo will still be maintained and the improved China relation can forestall military conflicts. The same old chinese-taipei formula will be used for taiwan to join various important economic regional groupings.

With DPP in power in 20 years we will be ???????? I can bet my house that we will NOT be independent. In some sort of alliance with US, Japan to contain China? What exactly is DPP's vision for the future?

Is it such an unpleasant prospect that an alliance might develop between 3 fellow democracies, all bound together by a mutual interest in deterring a communist dictatorship from launching a revanchist war?

I am less optimistic than you that the status quo would be maintained after 20 years of an accomodationalist KMT government. By definition, Taiwan's democratic system is part of the status quo. How much of that system would Taiwan be permitted to keep by the Communist Party of China? That is, after the Butchers of Beijing have "asked" the compliant KMT to stop all arms purchases and demilitarize the ROC Special Autonomous Region?

I can't help but wonder what Chiang Kai-Shek would have thought about the second prospect. That all the blood, toil and sacrifice that went into resisting the communists should be so casually dismissed, and by members of his own party, no less.

I am sorry if I have some misgiving about the rosy romantic picture 3 democracies bounding together, whatever that means. Nations persue their own self-interest and I don't believe Taiwan represent a compelling interesting in confronting China. To the US, we are just another "hot potato" issue that US would rather not have.

US position is clear, Bush stated that US is against any "unilateral move against the status quo". I don't think that paints a bright prospect for the so-called alliance.

Second, I am a firm believer soft power alone is enough to deter and has detered China from going to the military solution. To China the military solution is the worst case apocalyse scenerio in which everybody loses. A sort of mutually-assured destruction. If an easy solution exists to take the issue off the table then they would go for it too.
Besides, Taiwan can really ill-afford an arm race, China is simply too big.

The question people's mind today is not wether to be independent or reunified. How to get from today to whatever happens without a war is people's main concern. The very worst case scenerio would simply be a highly automous "entity" in some sort of supra-national structure like EU, and things only get better from there.

The most promising solution I'd heard of is by Kenneth Lieberthal, a former China policy guy in the Clinton era, which basically try to work out a pact to maintain the "Status quo" for X number of years while providing for interim status for Taiwan to functionally participate in international organizations. Now DPP is too extreme right to go for this solution; they are so lacking wisdoms to change their ways. Compare to DPP, KMT oddly represent the sort of rational thinking that's simply absent from the DPP politic.

Nations do act in their self-interest. It is in Taiwan's self-interest to defend itself to keep its de facto independence. It is in Japan's self-interest to see that China doesn't control the sea lanes through which Japan's oil flows. It is in America's self-interest not to let the Pacific become a Communist lake.

So what we have in this case is what the old economists used to call a "harmony of interests". They all have a mutual interest in maintaining the status quo.

Bush's statement about "unilateral moves" applies to both Taiwan AND to China. If the warning to the former disturbs the Taiwanese, the warning to the latter should give them some comfort.

The China Post has also suggested that soft power will deter the communists. Ask the Tibetans how well that worked out for THEM. (Come to think of it, TIBET is the worst-case scenario for Taiwan.)

The KMT is profoundly irrational, because they believe they can trust communists. For, to a communist:

"Promises are like pie crusts - made to be broken."

- V.I. Lenin

According to your logic, KMT is no less irrational than four consecutive president of the United States, from both Rep or Dem party, who found China trustworthy enough for a policy of engagement.

The U.S., unlike Taiwan, hasn't been threatened with an invasion if it doesn't surrender. That's a big difference.

Taiwan's position is much more analagous to America's vs. the Soviet Union. Sure, America negotiated and dealt with the Soviets. But it wasn't stupidly opening computer chip plants there either.

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