Saturday, February 24, 2007

Taiwan: the Hustler

For the last two decades, both the government and the people of Taiwan have presented a false image of the island to the American public and, thereby, have manipulated Washington into supporting Taiwan. The following 3 points summarize this false image. (1) Taiwan is a democracy and, therefore, it opposes the policies of Beijing and supports Western interests. (2) The mainland Chinese terrify the Taiwanese. (3) Taiwan is a "good friend" of the United States of America (USA), and hence, Washington should continue selling weapons to Taipei.

Central to Taiwanese manipulation are the lobbyists (e.g. Cassidy and Associates in Washington, D. C.) that Taipei hires. [1] In private meetings, they deliberately remind American politicians that Taiwan is a democracy and that it therefore supports Western interests -- especially around the time that Taipei wants to buy American weapons. Indeed, Taiwan is a democracy in which its people elect political representatives to the legislature, but being a democracy does not necessarily mean that Taipei supports Western interests. The Taiwanese actually support Chinese interests, not Western ones, by advocating, for example, nearly all the geopolitical objectives of Beijing. In concurrence with the mainland Chinese constitution, the Taiwanese constitution states explicitly that Tibet is part of China. [2] Promoting this injustice, the Taiwanese education system teaches children that Tibet has been rightfully part of China since time immemorial even while the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) arrests, tortures, and kills scores of Tibetan monks and nuns. Furthermore, the Taiwanese government has repeatedly warned the Japanese government that the Senkaku Islands is the territory of "One China" and that Japanese nationals must stay away from it. [3][4] Similarly, Taipei has told the Philippine government to steer clear of the Spratly Islands because it is also supposedly Chinese territory.

This support for Chinese interests pervades Taiwanese society. Several mid-ranking officers retired from the Taiwanese military have gone to Beijing to secure lucrative jobs. In exchange, the officers have given Beijing detailed information about the American weapons purchased by Taipei. The mainland Chinese now know all the performance characteristics of the F-16 jet fighter. When the "Taipei Times" interviewed a Taiwanese military official and asked him about stopping this hemorrhaging of American military secrets to mainland China, he responded, "We cannot do much about it." [5]

Not surprisingly, the plurality of spies who steal American military technology to give to Beijing is born and raised in Taiwan. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Gwo-Bao Min transferred neutron-bomb technology to Beijing in the late 1970s. [6] In 1985, Peter H. Lee gave laser technology to mainland Chinese scientists. [7] More recently, in 2001 August, Eugene Hsu and David Yang attempted to smuggle encryption devices from the USA into mainland China. [8]

Even more disturbing is the fact that some Taiwanese companies are helping terrorist states committed to destroying the USA. In 2004 December, Washington slapped economic penalties against 7 mainland Chinese companies and 1 Taiwanese company. The Taiwanese company is Ecoma Enterprise Company and gave technology or services to the Iranians to improve their missiles and other weapons that may be used against Americans in a future conflict. [9]

Clearly, the Taiwanese do not support Western interests even though Taiwan is a democracy, and the mainland Chinese certainly do not terrify them. Approximately 1 million Taiwanese, 4.5% of the population on the island, have already emigrated to mainland China to live and to work. [10] After the West (i.e. North America, Europe, and Oceania), mainland China is now the most popular destination for Taiwanese emigration. [11]

In addition, the Taiwanese have invested more than $100 billion into more than 50,000 businesses in mainland China. [12] This flood of money and technology into China began about 16 years ago. In 1989 June, the Chinese PLA killed a few hundred protestors in the incident at Tiananmen Square. The Americans and other Westerners responded by freezing or curtailing investments into China and intended to use economic sanctions to punish the Chinese government. Unfortunately, the Taiwanese and the Hong Kongers seized this window of opportunity and gave Beijing any money or technology that the Americans refused to give. The Taiwanese completely thwarted the economic sanctions. Since that time, Taiwanese investments of money and technology into China have grown annually at double-digit rates. Today, the volume of trade across the Taiwan Straits exceeds that between Taiwan and the USA.

The ultimate symbol of this cooperation between Taiwan and China is the collaboration, in 2000 May, between the son of the chairman of the Formosa Group (a powerful Taiwanese conglomerate) and the son of Jiang Zemin (former Chinese president and the butcher of Tibet) on building an advanced silicon-wafer factory in Shanghai. This collaboration involved $6.4 billion. [13]

Both the Taiwanese government and the Taiwanese people support Chinese interests even though they contradict Western interests like human rights. Nonetheless, the Taiwanese refuse to be ruled by Beijing, and for that reason, the Taiwanese insist that the Americans sell weapons to them. Yet, selling weapons to Taiwan most assuredly damages relations between the mainland Chinese government and both the American government and American businesses. Beijing becomes less cooperative on vital American issues like fighting international terrorism and controlling rogue states (e.g. North Korea). Further, Beijing becomes more likely to dissuade Chinese businesses (e.g. airlines) from buying American products (e.g. commercial airplanes produced by Boeing).

The Taiwanese expect that Americans will damage their relations with Beijing in order to support their supposed "good friend", Taiwan. Washington lobbyists paid by the Taiwanese government constantly remind American politicians and the American public that Taiwan is a "good friend" of the USA and that Americans would be abandoning Taiwan if they did not sell weapons to Taipei. Is Taiwan really a "good friend"? The facts suggest otherwise. Taiwan more closely resembles a hustler like Johnny Chung.

Chung was born and raised in Taiwan. He is one of the key culprits who made illegal financial contributions to the Democratic party during the 1996 presidential campaign. [14] He pretended to be a friend of high-ranking Democrats but, in the background, was illegally funneling money from the Chinese communist government to the coffers of the Democratic party. Once the leaders of the Democratic party realized what Chung was doing, they severed their ties to him.

Like Chung, the Taiwanese government and the Taiwanese people pretend to be a friend of Americans but, in the background, support Chinese interests that contradict American interests. Like the Democratic party, the Americans should severe their ties to the hustler, Taiwan, before it does any more damage to the security and well-being of the USA. Washington should immediately rescind the Taiwan Relations Act and terminate the sales of weapons to Taiwan. To compensate for Taiwanese mistreatment of the Tibetans, the American government should propose that it shall treat Taiwan as a province of China in exchange for the Chinese government establishing Tibet as an autonomous special-administration region like Hong Kong. Beijing would readily agree to such a proposal.

The essay, "Taiwan: the Hustler", was originally written in 2004 and was revised in 2005 February.

1. Jim Mann, "Big Business Comes to Aid of China", "Los Angeles Times", 1999 November 10.
2. Taiwanese Constitution (English translation).
3. "Japanese nationalists visit disputed Tiaoyutai island", Agence France-Presse ("Taipei Times"), 2003 August 26.
4. "A LEAP OF FAITH -- Barren rocks become a deadly flashpoint for contending claims", "Asiaweek", 1996 October 11.
5. Brian Hsu, "Military secrets on sale to China", "Taipei Times", 2000 July 11.
6. Dan Stober, "Neutron-bomb spy suspect is key link to Wen Ho Lee", "San Jose Mercury News", 2000 April 13
7. "US Physicist Pleads Guilty", Counterintelligence News and Developments, 1998 March.
8. Christopher Newton, "Two Men Arrested for Planning to Smuggle High-Tech Encryption Devices to China", Associated Press, 2001 August 29.
9. "Federal Register", volume 70, Number 1, page 133, 2005 January 3.
10. Keith Bradsher, "Taiwan Watches Its Economy Slip to China", "The New York Times", 2004 December 13.
11. Sam Ng, "Taiwanese Gold Rush to China", "Asia Times", 2004 June 30.
12. John M. Glionna, "Keeping Party Line, Bottom Line Separate", "Los Angeles Times", 2004 July 28.
13. "Sons of prominent Chinese team up on chip venture", "Taipei Times", 2000 May 11.
14. "Campaign Finance Key Player: Johnny Chung", "The Washington Post", 1998 May 21.


FormosaSavage said...

This is a short-sighted article. Highly biased against an unknown "Taiwanese" foe who is most likely in almost all cases born of the KMT party. Factually correct. However, the foe has not been fully defined. You cannot blame a whole society for the wrongdoings of the immorally elite who ruled the country for 50 years under "undemocratic" martial law. Placing blame on all Taiwanese is like placing the blame of slavery on all Americans and not just on the slave-owning Southerners. And, it is like placing the blame of the Holocaust on all Germans regardless of whether they were for or against the Nazi party. The KMT party in Taiwan is undemocratic and rules based on greed and corruption. They are the bastard children of the Chinese Communist Party, similar in all too many ways. The democratic parties in Taiwan, although not perfect, are for the independence of Taiwan from China.
Greed will consume regardless of whether or not the country is democratic. I could cite many Americans who have betrayed American interests as well.

Freedom Ain't Free said...

Your blog post, "Taiwan: the Hustler" would better be titled “Republic of China: the Hustler” as it not surprisingly paints Taiwan with broad blue strokes (blue is the color of the Nationalist Party alliance). Obviously, you remain oblivious to the pan-green Taiwan Independence Movement, to US efforts for keeping this movement bottled up, and the fact that Taiwan is not the Chinese monolith you apparently envision. You use the word Taiwanese, yet you describe actions and behavior which is patently Chinese. You don’t have the first clue about reality on the ground in Taiwan or even about the contribution of the US State Department to the whole mess. No where is your post do you point out that if the US were to support the Taiwanese rather than the Nationalist Chinese the US would be more secure but that in fact is the case.

Anonymous said...

This is a great blog, not all American's are that dumb.

Of course the Taiwanese ran
to China for business and sold out their own island and the USA.

If anyone is dumb enough to believe with all the US corporations and Taiwan companies
the US will do anything to prevent
business as ususal they are really the dumbest on the planet.

After 60 years of a cold war what
did we learn? That US corporations
wanted an arms length of ownership
in a communist society. They moved the jobs to a communist nation they could do business with.

Democracy is a thing of the past
Nationalism of the American company
is a bunch of BS.

If this was about democracy we
we would have let the Chinese from
Hong Kong come when they left for
Vancouver BC.

China has the upper hand with expats. Their middle kingdom deserves our middle finger