The Chinese government has increasingly grown wary of President Bush’s attitude toward Taiwan and is very concerned over a recent American decision to sell that country $6.5 billion of arms. A spokesperson for Foreign Minister Qin Gang, said: “We hope that the US side will abide by its promise to respect the ‘one-China’ policy and oppose Taiwan independence.” Chinese officials are reaching out to newly elected Barack Obama and urging him to void the arms sales after he becomes president and engage with China in discussing the future of Taiwan. “The Chinese government holds a positive and open attitude toward contacts with Obama and his team, since it is conducive to a stable transition and he healthy and stable development of Sino-US relations.”
It becomes clear with each passing day how world leaders are disgusted with George Bush and seek to work with a new leader who is interested in solving, not creating problems. China wants peace, not hostility with the United States and hopefully, Barack Obama can help create such a partnership.
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The United States military budget is greater than military budgets of the entire world, but the Bush administration feels no hesitation giving lectures to other nations about their military build-ups. John Negroponte, Deputy Under Secretary of State, told the Chinese government it should not be focusing military weapons at Taiwan since the only result is to increase tensions. “We believe China’s build-up as unnecessary and counterproductive. The anxiety it breeds on Taiwan encourages pro-independence inclinations.”
Perhaps, Mr. Negroponte can speak with President Bush about constructing missile bases on the border of Russia which ostensibly are aimed at North Korea or Iran. The Russian government has invited the United States to use bases in Russia to deter the North Korean or Iranian missiles but the US has turned down this offer. Apparently, it is alright for the Bush administration to cause anxiety and tension in Russia by this blatant effort to intimidate the Russians, but China is incorrect to focus a build-up near Taiwan.
There is no more need for a Chinese build-up near Taiwan than there is for an American build-up on the border of Russia against missiles that never will be fired from either North Korea or Iran.
Taiwan’s Nationalist Party scored a dramatic victory in the presidential election on Saturday and promised to expand economic ties with China while proecting the island from being swallowed up politically and become another Tibet which results in complete control by Beijing. Ma Ying-jeou told cheering crowds he will work for a less confrontational relationship with China and move away from the current government position the island should formally declare its independence and seek entry into the United Nations. The Chinese government insists Taiwan must recognize its historic relationship with China and avoid any action such as seeking to become independent.
Ma is particularly interested in expanding Chna-Taiwan high tech connections which every year sends billions of dollars’ worth of Taiwan’s advanced comoonents to low-cost assembly plants on Chna’s rapidly developing east coast. “We need to engage the mainland to improve our economy” was a typical view of many Taiwan businessmen.
The ironic aspect of the vote is that the Nationalist party is descended from those who fled China after being defeated in 1948. The cycle of life has turned and now Nationalists seek to reopen good relations with those who drove them from the mainland.