The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) is using US pork as a vehicle for bringing chaos to Taiwan by working against the US and befriending China in a clear manifestation of its ill will.
KMT Chairman Johnny Chiang (江啟臣) has claimed that he wants to rejuvenate the party, make it Taiwan-centered and befriend the US, but instead he has triggered a doctrinal backlash as the party’s pro-unification faction holds sway over its legislative caucus, while the party leadership has been turned into a lame duck. Chiang himself is becoming overwhelmed by the party’s infighting.
The KMT is fighting the import of US pork with such abandon because of its ill intent: It wants to create chaos. It wants to create the impression that Taiwan lacks an effective government capable of carrying out its international duties to prevent Taiwan from raising its international profile and winning more recognition.
A country as defined in international law requires a defined territory, a population, effective government and the ability to maintain international relations.
Last year, Taiwan displayed international responsibility, received universal praise in contrast to China’s neglect of its international responsibilities. This is China’s sore point and the pro-China camp’s most hated fact.
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) does not stop at contradicting himself to oppose the import of US pork; deep-blue Taichung Mayor Lu Shiow-yen (盧秀燕) used American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) Director Brent Christensen for her own political purposes; and local government heads take local autonomy to extremes as they oppose the central government’s foreign policy responsibilities and duties.
In doing so, they fail to see the huge surge in Taiwan’s international reputation while suffering two self-inflicted slaps in the face from the US. It is difficult to know whether to laugh or cry.
The AIT issued a strong-worded criticism of Lu’s political media show and removed her from the high points in the AIT’s annual review.
The US National Security Council on Jan. 1 presented Ma with a slap in the face as it on Twitter welcomed Taiwan’s decision to remove the import ban on both US beef and pork, and said that it was looking forward to stronger economic relations between the US and Taiwan this year.
The US bluntly pointed to Ma’s hypocrisy in allowing the import of US beef, but opposing US pork imports, while also sending a reminder that joining the international community carries a responsibility to follow through on one’s promises.
All the US wants is fairness and the removal of trade obstacles — no one is forcing anyone to eat anything. Ma’s continued attempts to flatter Beijing while attacking Taiwan will only speed up the collapse of the KMT.
James Wang is a media commentator.
Translated by Perry Svensson
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