Friday, December 14, 2007

Enlightened Comment of the Week

Congrerssman Tom Tancredo calls for the United States to end the "one China" fallacy "in favor of a more honest and defensible 'two-state solution' that extends full diplomatic recognition to both Taiwan and China (Taipei Times, courtesy Brian McAdam, member since 2005). It is a fantastic piece, and just what the doctor ordered after the abysmal performance of Ray Burghardt.

Tancredo's piece is terrific throughout, but here are some of the highlights:

. . . the US relationship with China has long been one of "give and take" -- the US gives, and China takes. Each time the US makes an accommodation, Beijing sees only weakness and becomes more aggressive -- which in turn prompts the US State Department to offer yet more concessions.

. . .

And for all of this pandering, what has the Bush administration gained? Half-hearted Chinese cooperation in the "Six Party Talks," Chinese obstruction in the human tragedy unfolding in Sudan, renewed Chinese threats of military action against Taiwan, and now the brazen and public humiliation of the US in barring the USS Kitty Hawk from Hong Kong's harbor.

And China, certainly no help in encouraging transparency in Tehran's nuclear ambitions, is now using the latest National Intelligence Estimate on Iran as a rationale for pressuring the US, the Europeans and the International Atomic Energy Agency to ease off on demands for access to what is still a very troubling ongoing uranium enrichment program.

. . .

The US relationship with Taiwan isn't the only thing that has suffered as a result of our hopeless policy of appeasement vis-a-vis China. It highlights a glaring hypocrisy in US foreign policy, undermines our international image, emboldens our enemies and enhances the credibility of our detractors like China.

The Bush administration's practice of trying to limit Taiwan's democratic development and diplomatic space in return for China's illusory "cooperation" on North Korea, Myanmar, Iran or Sudan sends the message that the US is ceding Asia to China's hegemony.

Tom Tancredo' s campaign for president has not been what it could have been; in fact, the presence of both he and Duncan Hunter in this race more likely hurt the anti-Communist movement than helped it. That said, Tancredo is still one of us, and it is great to see he can still speak truth to power.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

My message to the Taiwanese people: I am not like Ray Burghardt; I support the "pan-greens"

The more I think about Ray Burghardt's intervention in Taiwan's upcoming elections, the angrier I get. I wish I could say Burghardt was "freelancing," but sadly, I know better than that.

The fact is, the Bush Administration has been uneasy about President Chen Shui-bian and his Democratic Progressive Party for quite some time, to the point of publicly calling Chen out on previous referendum plans. Then and now, the Administration was sending a message to Taiwanese voters: reject the robust anti-Communism of Chen's Democratic Progressive Party in favor of the cadre-friendly Nationalists.

The President was wrong then, and Burghardt is wrong now; the Taiwanese people didn't listen then, and I sincerely hope they don't listen now.

To the Taiwanese people, I say this: not all Americans are as shortsighted as President Bush or Ray Burghardt. You have far more friends here than you realize. Millions of us are in awe at your courage, strength, and dedication to freedom and liberty. We know how hard it is to stand up to Beijing and Washington, and we admire you every day you do it.

I, for one, hope you do it again.

For what it's worth, as I did four years ago, I hereby endorse, enthusiastically and without reservation, the Democratic Progressive Party nominee for President - Frank Hsieh - and all DPP and fellow "pan-green" candidates for the Taiwanese legislature. I will even go so far as to say the Presidential election (in March) is of equal importance to our own in November.

Mr. President, please fire Raymond Burghardt

The chairman of the American Institute in Taiwan, our de facto embassy there, has engaged in an outrageous interference in the upcoming elections on the island democracy.

In a recent statement, Raymond Burghardt took issue with a proposed referendum that would call for Taiwan to seek a United Nations seat as Taiwan (not the Republic of China). Now, Taiwan has been looking to gain admission into the UN for years, only to be turned down every time. The only difference now would be the label on future (and, sadly, sure to be unsuccessful) efforts.

That was still too much for America's voice in Taiwan (Asia-Pacific News via Monsters and Critics):
The referendum will - just the process of having the referendum - will make it harder for a new president of Taiwan to develop better relations across the Taiwan Strait.

This is breathtaking arrogance on Burghardt's part for two reasons. First, to criticize the island democracy for "just the process of having the referendum" is a slap in the face to every single Taiwanese voter. The U.S. may hint as to its preference for a particular vote (and does in other democracies), but only Taiwan gets the humiliation of being told the vote itself is a mistake.

Secondly, Burghardt makes pretty clear who he wants to win with this missive. The referendum's greatest support comes from the "pan-green" coalition led by outgoing President Chen Shui-bian's Democratic Progressive Party, while its opponents largely come from the "pan-blue" faction (or as I've taken to call it, "pan-red"), led by the Kuomintang (Nationalist) Party.

Taiwan is facing both legislative and presidential elections early next year. Burghardt is, in effect, telling voters the U.S. prefers the Communist-friendly "blues" over the anti-Communist "greens." This is outrageous and wrong-headed.

Three years ago, when Therese Shaheen similarly dropped hints of support for the DPP, President Bush fired her. The President must follow that precedent if he is truly impartial. Ray Burghardt must be fired - ASAP.

Friday, December 07, 2007

"Almost all enemies of the United States are China's friends"

For years, I have tried to explain why Communist China has armed, funded, or otherwise supported nearly every anti-American terrorist regime on Earth (Iran, al Qaeda, Saddam Hussein, the Taliban, Stalinist North Korea, etc.). Sadly, too many are still willing to ignore reality, or explain it away as some business deal that has nothing to do with geopolitics.

They might want to look at Yuan Peng, of the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, said to the Communist-run media (Worldwide Standard):

"'Almost all enemies' of U.S. 'are China's friends'" says the report from

An official of the Chinese government last week confirmed that Beijing is supporting U.S. enemies around the world.

Yuan Peng, director of the Institute of American Studies, part of the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations, said that "in the world, almost all enemies of the United States are China's friends."

The rare admission confirms the view of some critics who say China's arms sales to
rogue states like Iran, Syria and North Korea are based on a deliberate strategy of indirectly confronting the United States.

Peng's institute, the CICIR, is an entity of the Ministry of State Security, China's main intelligence service. His remarks were included in a state-run media report.

Peng said long-term strategic stability between the U.S. and China "still remain[s] doubtful."

Let this be a reminder to all - America will never be secure until China is free.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Congratulations to Anson Chan

The former head of Hong Kong's civil service, who had been the last link to the British colonial government until she resigned from the Communist-backed regime in disgust, scored a landslide win in her bid for the city's Legislative Council (The Australian).

It was yet another reminder that the people of Hong Kong still long for freedom and democracy.