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China and Taiwan Get Snuggly

Speaking of luvfests, is anyone noticing the blossoming romance between China and Taiwan? Today, China announced that the World Health Organization has invited Taiwan to attend the 62nd World Health Assembly (WHA) as an observer.

WHA who? you ask? Actually, this is important. Basically, it means that big war between China and the United States that so many people have worried about for so long is looking less and less likely.

Allowing Taiwan to show up for a major UN meeting qualifies as the first major concession on the part of China towards Taiwan following the election of Ma Ying-jeou as president of the island nation. In May 2008, Ma replaced the incompetent and allegedly corrupt Chen Shui-bian, who spent more time in office trying to yank out China's nosehairs than help Taiwan.

The WHA invitation is part of a series of deals that the two sides have worked out over th last year. They've increased tourism across the Taiwan Straits and added flights. (The number of flights reportedly will jump to 270 a week; that's a huge benefit to the many Taiwanese businesses that operate in China.) China has dispatched pandas to the Taipei zoo -- panda diplomacy! And then on Sunday in Nanjing (the old capital of Nationalist China) the two sides agreed to a slate of agreements that will lay the groundwork for a flood of investment in financial services to flow across the Taiwan Strait for the first time in six decades.

But the holy grail for Taiwan (and for President Ma) so far was today's announcement on the WHA. The reason is that by moving towards granting Taiwan observer status at a key UN agency, China is in effect (and for the first time in decades) giving Taiwan some "international space," a little breathing room -- something that President Chen had demanded but never got during his eight years in office.

For years, when it came to Taiwan, China's diplomacy was a monotonous full-court press; the sole purpose was to squash Taiwan like a bug on a windshield. Today, the mandarins in Beijing look downright sophisticated. And what timing, too!

Indeed, the announcement of Taiwan's participation in the WHA assembly (from May 18 to 27) couldn't have come at a better moment. Swine flu has become a global problem and everybody on Taiwan remembers what Beijing's government did the last time a disease of this magnitude hit the world. That is, during the SARS epidemic of 2003, China blocked the WHO from helping Taiwan and also took steps to deep-six Taiwan's attempt to enter the organization as an observer.

A little irony here. Sha Zukang, as China's ambassador to its permanent mission in Geneva, led the charge against Taiwan's application in 2004. Today he is Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairst at the U.N. Operative quote by Sha at the time: "Taiwan, as a province of China, has no qualification whatsoever to participate in the WHA." I wonder what Sha, who never is at a loss for words, would say today?

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Comments (36)

evenadog Author Profile Page:

1. No Ma is not selling out Taiwan's interest. Look at his Defense budget. Now if us Taiwanese spent that money on Healthcare, research and education. We probably could of recruited some of the best minds around the world and would of been on Par with some of the Europeans, S. Korean and Japanese.

2. With the Economics. Its the same situation like the China-US trade. Lets face it who is really benefiting. The Taiwanese Factory owners, executives and to a smaller extent Chinese people. The real ones laughing to the Bank are the Taiwanese businessman. The Chinese are just surviving. So if you want to blame somebody blame the Rich Businessman thats not sharing with the rest of us. That is inherently a issue with Capitalism. China is still a in line with a 3rd world nation in terms of GDP per capita.

3. I'm a Taiwanese-American (dual-citizenship). I don't like Ma but, I don't think he's as pro-China as you like to believe. I just think he's on the right track. Put down the Gun, pick up the book.

Get it. Everybody around the world like to blame stuff on China but, little do they know it is the Taiwanese businessman that are one of the few people in China that is running the show. Like how American accuses its immigrants of Making/Saving their money to send back to their Motherland. The Taiwanese businesses should do the same but, they don't because, they just leave it in their pockets. Bottom line who benefits most is the Taiwanese Business and elite.

Same situation in America also. The problem you barking on is a Capitalism one.

Ma has been begging the US to sell them more weapons. I think its just they want some technology so hopefully they can reverse engineer it and produce it themselves. The Americans aren't stupid, they know that also.

Honestly I don't want manufacturing industry to grow in Taiwan. Just like USA wanted except were a smaller population we can do without or little of manufacturing and concentrate on advance stuff. Like Stem cells, alternate energy etc. Plus factories seem to be causing significant damage to the environment, our pollution is bad enough as is.

So Cueball appreciate your POV but, its really time to put down the guns, point the missiles elsewhere. Stop this arguing that seems to be egged on by foreign influences. Cueball you're just a DDP. Which is fine just that wars generally doesn't benefit anybody. If we can keep the system the way it is I am cool with that.

howardxue Author Profile Page:

How biased are some sour-graping posters here!

When taiwan companies invest in mainland, it is a danger of "money out of taiwan", while when mainland companies invest in the island, it is a danger of "economy control and loss of know-how". LOL...

Do you guys suggest the two sides just shut door and keep hostile to each other forever? C'mon man, look, even US Pres. Obama are showing goodwill and pragmaticism to former rivals (Cuba, Iran, Venezuela, etc.)...

Some people just want to corner the current Ma administration for their self interests, so whatever Ma do is to be attacked for sure by "the view of taiwan blog" and alike - Improving the economy by cross-strait trade pact means "loss of sovereignty", while staying away from the mainland means "incapability of saving taiwan economy from the global financial crisis"...

When the door of dialogue is opened and deadlock is untied, based on mutual respect, there will be quick improvement and progress in co-operation and development - Which we should see as a win-win game rather than a zero-sum fight. But remember, to reach a win-win business deal, patient negotiations, and comromises sometimes, are needed. Just like a love fest, rather than "marriage trap".

generalyuefei Author Profile Page:


This poem is for Chinese who provokes Independent War. Recite it, it brings your spine chill when you dream for the unreal disaster.

generalyuefei Author Profile Page:


It seems that you and your Taiwan Independence groupies are really devoted fight and have Chinese killing each other on this issue.

I have good suggestion for you and your people, why not you arrange and lead your people to Beijing.

We have the biggest Square in the world, shrine stage of political world.

Go there, show how much you guys dare and how passionate you believe your concept.

At least you have to convince us you have guts and balls, the world and your opponent even admire your courage.

If you do that, I am sure you have something.

Bring all your independent chickens, let their bird flu spread in Beijing, then all Chinese people will at least respect your guts.

Want to be fighter? Grow some balls and then gain your skill.

generalyuefei Author Profile Page:

To Cueball2008,

Those terrorists hijacked the planes hit WTC, killed many innocent, they had same faith as you do, "rather live a short life than be legend"

You people hijack other people do believe your craps and cause disasters for others and majority.

Don't let your belief ruin other people who want to live peaceful life.

You want independence?

Go to Beijing, hold up your damn sign and horn!

Let's see you have guts!

I bet you kind people set a fire and run the first!

onlooker_in_philly Author Profile Page:

Mr. Turton, the patron saint and savior of Taiwanese people!

Only you have the deepest understanding and the most objective observations of Taiwan affair, not Washington Post reporter, not even the people of Taiwan!

Your devotion to Taiwan independence and DPP is admirable, however misguided it might be, and you are certainly entitled to your opinion. But, I think you should respect Taiwanese people’s choice, and shouldn’t trivialize Taiwan election result as “set of voters” “be impelled to vote against their own interests”.

Taiwanese people gave Chen Shui-bian and the DPP 8 years, and people don’t like what the DPP had done. Taiwanese People DID vote for their own interest! That’s why DDP was out and KMT is in. That may not be the result you liked, but that’s democracy!

Cueball2008 Author Profile Page:


"Now we all know that when the DDP was in office all they did was cause conflict and spend unnecessary too much on defense."

First, it's DPP. Second, the defence budget dropped when Chen came to office and never rose above 3% of GDP. Ma has committed himself to at least 3% of GDP on defence.

"Now if we can just spend on education instead of defense we can advance a little faster."

So you would be against President Ma's policies then, as he wants more on defence.

"Also in business sense, the Taiwanese people been making a boatload of money off of the factories in China. So technically its not Money out of Taiwan."

So can you explain to a stupid foreigner like me how Taiwan makes its money with that set-up? As far as I understand it:

*The workers are Chinese, so China benefits from higher employment, whilst Taiwan suffers from lost job opportunities.

*The company is taxed by the Chinese government so its revenues go up, whilst the Taiwanese government loses revenue.

*The Taiwanese bosses who own/run the company spend more time in China and therefore more of their own money there and less in Taiwan.

How does Taiwan benefit?

"Another view in Taiwan."

Really? Given your general ignorance you're either a Chinese person in disguise or a woefully uninformed blue-shirt who doesn't even know what policies his leader has.

Cueball2008 Author Profile Page:

"The chicken is to captured and its head is cut off, its body roasted and hung by the window in the rest. of Chinatown; Phoenix, do anyone ever see a phoenix?"

So, GeneralYueFei, what you're telling me is that the chicken as a short life but the Phoenix doesn't exist.

So I take it that you think if Taiwan becomes part of China (and spare me the rubbish about Taiwan being part of China, China has no control over Taiwan except bullying other countries to interact with it as little as possible), the supposed benefits like the phoenix will not exist.

I would prefer to live for a short time than become a fantasy.

However, what I think you're talking about is that chickens get eaten but phoenixs don't. Well at the moment NO ONE is planning to eat Taiwan - only China is interested in eating its flesh. Let Taiwanese look after themselves. If something goes wrong in the future, let them sort it out for themselves. They are a highly advanced country after all.

It's bad enough that America sees itself as a world policeman, we don't need China pretending it needs to take over its neighbours for their own benefit!

evenadog Author Profile Page:

I'm sick of these anti-CCP western sounding names commenting about wanting to split and divide our Chinese bond and continue the conflict. Now we all know that when the DDP was in office all they did was cause conflict and spend unnecessary too much on defense. While the Americans are reaping the rewards off these huge defense contracts. Now if we can just spend on education instead of defense we can advance a little faster. I'm not in favor for being a SAR but, many people in Taiwan feel that what we have is good "neither nor". We don't need to change anything. Also in business sense, the Taiwanese people been making a boatload of money off of the factories in China. So technically its not Money out of Taiwan.
This is a moment for all Chinese people on both strait even if you for or against.

Another view in Taiwan.

thmak Author Profile Page:

To Turtonm: If you say that the election in Taiwan is that any set of voters can be impelled to vote against their own interests, then you imply that the so-called democratic system in Taiwan is just a pure farce, a morally corrupt system. I hope you understand.

generalyuefei Author Profile Page:

---Taiwanese will not accept political subservience to China. As the ancient Chinese saying goes, people here would "rather be the head of a chicken than the tail of a Phoenix" (寧做雞頭,不為鳳尾).---

A person believes above saying is an idiot.

Let me explain:

The chicken is to captured and its head is cut off, its body roasted and hung by the window in the rest. of Chinatown; Phoenix, do anyone ever see a phoenix? can anyone catch a phoenix?

What a idiot!

generalyuefei Author Profile Page:

John understands that CCP always stretch their hand toward KMT.

Stir up the fire btwn brothers is really not so good, and he knows that every new years national gala,
that officially announce to Taiwan, HK, Macao, and all Chinese in the world that we are brothers and sisters.

The only things is that the enemy don't know the concept of family.

As Chinese old saying that one shall not break other's house...

One day, God might put people in such situation that their family or house that torn apart by others, that way they understand how family suffer, and how much passion they work to be together.

I guess John never been put in such situation, but don't worry God is fair.

The river streams to west,
the river streams to east;
The earth spins around,
as fortune switch around.

John also has family, house, and nation. But I don't wish his house are fighting against each other and I be the one to sow the seed of it.

Some people need to really get education.

turtonm Author Profile Page:

thmak writes: The overwhelming election victory of the KMT indicates that the Taiwanese do not support the DPP China policy irrespective of what you said, instead they arduously support KMT China policy. I hope you understand.\

The "overwhelming" election victory -- actually a shift in the swing vote -- simply shows, as we already knew, that any set of voters can be impelled to vote against their own interests. At present, Ma's approval ratings are under 30%. Perhaps they'll get a bump from all this publicity.

I hope you understand that.

Michael Turton
The View from Taiwan

turtonm Author Profile Page:


Though obviously a pretty well organized response, it's hard to take your post seriously with such linguistic gems as 'owned' or 'pwnd' littered around.

It's hard to find the right word that captures the klutziness of the KMT negotiators and the self-imposed weakness of their position, as well as the extent to which China dominated them.

The reason China didn't like to deal with Chen probably has to do with his strong pro-independence stance and inflammatory rhetoric. There is no common ground to begin negotiation.

Actually, there was plenty of common ground, which is why the negotiations that the KMT is rolling over for all began under the DPP: direct flights, the crime agreements, investment agreements, etc. The problem was that the DPP took seriously its charge to protect the island, whereas the KMT higher ups all see Taiwan as a token to be traded in the great game of getting influence in China.

Closer economic ties is a win-win for everyone, but it's hardly the beginning of Taiwan's political subservience.

Closer economic ties are win-win provided that the Taiwan side is guarding its interests. Clearly, as the Taiwan News pointed out, it is not.

Michael Turton
The View from Taiwan

thmak Author Profile Page:

To Turtonm: You have to understand that the agreementis was negotiated under the undeclared acknowledgement that Taiwan is a part of China, not an independent nation. Without that agreement, there will be no negotiation. I hope you understand. Therefore the terms of the agreement just reflect that agreement, excluding any rights for any entities that bear foreign interest. China allows Taiwan business up to 100% ownership in investment in China. Allowing only 30% ownership for China investment in Taiwan indicate inequality and lopesided advantage for Taiwan. The overwhelming election victory of the KMT indicates that the Taiwanese do not support the DPP China policy irrespective of what you said, instead they arduously support KMT China policy. I hope you understand.

hawksmoor Author Profile Page:

to turtonm:

Though obviously a pretty well organized response, it's hard to take your post seriously with such linguistic gems as 'owned' or 'pwnd' littered around.

The reason China didn't like to deal with Chen probably has to do with his strong pro-independence stance and inflammatory rhetoric. There is no common ground to begin negotiation.

Closer economic ties is a win-win for everyone, but it's hardly the beginning of Taiwan's political subservience. Even the pan blue coalition hardly ever bring up unification as its goal but often opt for preservation of the status quo, which the vast majority of the Taiwanese voters prefer.

Maoman Author Profile Page:

John, "allowing Taiwan to show up for a major UN meeting qualifies as the first major concession on the part of China towards Taiwan following the election of Ma Ying-jeou as president of the island nation." It's small potatoes and weak compensation for the continued bullying of Taiwan.

And Chen may have been corrupt (which seems to be a hallmark of most of our leaders over here), but incompetence is a word better hung on the the Ma administration. He's carelessly steering this nation into a Chinese Anschluss, against the wishes of his constituency, who want desperately to keep the economic gains they have made in the last half century, but not at the cost of annexation. Brothers and sisters across the strait? More like second cousins.

Anthony van Dyck

turtonm Author Profile Page:

I should also like to add part of this Taiwan News editorial from the other day:

"For example, the touted "breakthrough" agreements that opened direct cross-strait commercial marine and air links both denigrated Taiwan's status by treating such routes as "domestic" through the exclusion of foreign carriers and thus also harmed Taiwan commercial interests by excluding the vast majority of Taiwan-owned ships which fly foreign flags of convenience and by refusing to extend "fifth freedom" or onward passage rights for even Taiwan airlines.


For example, the failure to include onward flight rights in the new pact will reduce Taiwan into a "commercial air dependency" of the PRC, whose airports will gain control over the lion's share of lucrative "hub" onward connections. Given the widespread claim that Taiwan is rich in capital but short on "investment opportunities" (at least for myopic Taiwan investors), the influx of PRC state-owned companies, with the assistance of local proxies, will be able to use the maximum of 30 percent ownership to secure effective managerial control over Taiwan companies and their technology or knowhow in most economic fields, including telecommunications and news media, snare public works contracts and channels for patronage, and, with investments in hotels and travel companies, secure control over the bulk of renminbi spent in Taiwan by Chinese tourists.

The imminent financial services memorandum of understanding (MOU), which even KMT lawmakers have warned will result in "Money Out" of Taiwan, will offer the PRC's giant state banks channels to control over even more Taiwan capital and access to up-to-date inside financial information on Taiwan companies and any citizen who has a credit or finance card, access which will undoubtedly be utilized for political as well as commercial purposes.

Moreover, the obvious "quid pro quo" that Beijing will overtly or covertly demand for an agreement to "fight cross-strait crime" and any grudging assistance in sending "economic criminals" back to Taiwan will be "reciprocal" assistance in securing the "return," expulsion from Taiwan or control of political dissidents, perhaps painted as "terrorists," such as advocates of Tibetan independence or Chinese democracy.

Last but not least, the insistence by Ma and the KMT government that these agreements have nothing to do with "politics" or Taiwan's sovereignty means that no "firewalls" will be set in place to prevent PRC interests from expanding political influence in Taiwan in the pattern of the China Resources Group and the Xinhua News Agency in Hong Kong."

I've got an extensive post on the WHA and the Nanjing talks up on my blog now.

Michael Turton
The View from Taiwan blog

turtonm Author Profile Page:

As usual, John, you have misunderstood everything

The WHA announcement, was timed to cover up the fact that Beijing owned the Ma/KMT during the Nanjing talks last weekend. The DPP Administration was never in such a position of dangerous weakness as the KMT was in negotiations with the CCP, it had competent negotiators led by a President who kept Taiwan's interests in mind, who would never have permitted the CCP to take over the island's cross-strait markets. The KMT Old Guard in charge of the negotiations views Taiwan as a bargaining chip in their future return to China, nothing more.

Taiwan News noted the other day:

"For example, ARATS turned down various requests by the SEF side, such as Taipei's plea to increase the flights for Taiwan airlines in "golden routes" such as between Taipei and Shanghai and instead graciously expanded flights between Taipei and "hot spots" like Nanchang and Hefei instead and added northward routes that passed only through PRC air control zones to emphasize the "domestic" character of cross-strait air routes.

Moreover, in response to the KMT government's urgency to initiate talks on a cross-strait economic cooperation framework agreement (ECFA), the Beijing side excluded the ECFA from discussion for the fourth Chiang-Chen "negotiations," evidently pending the offer of further concessions by the Taipei side.

Last but not least, the PRC side showed that it treated the SEF-ARATS talks as "normal negotiations" by leaking a draft but unsigned set of agreements to the official Xinhua News Agency and thus forcing the Taiwan negotiators to sign Beijing's version or threaten not to sign the agreements, a risk that the KMT side lacked the political courage to take."

The irony of your accusation of incompetence is that the WHO/WHA entry was important to locals here in Taiwan precisely because the DPP had cultivated the issue. Moreover, DPP and Lee Teng-hui administration cultivation of links with developing countries had led to much quiet pressure on Beijing to give on the WHA issue, because those nations want Taiwan's world-class medical expertise. The KMT was boxed in by previous DPP policies, some of which now stretch back almost a decade.

I wish you would take the time to step back from the tired Beijing propaganda that so often appears in your blog posts on Taiwan, and really see what is happening in the Strait -- and really understand the numbing incompetence of the KMT administration in the cross-strait talks. The reason the CCP hated Chen so much was precisely because the DPP team never permitted China to pwn the Taiwanese side.

And the end, John, will be an absolute blow out regional war after China turns Taiwan into an SAR and then moves on to the next conquest.

Michael Turton
The View from Taiwan blog

MPatalinjug Author Profile Page:

Yonkers, New York
30 April 2009

China's long-time belligerent attitude toward Taiwan has obviously changed--and changed for the better.

Better for Taiwan, better for China, better for the United States. And better for the whole world.

The mandarins in Beijing apparently have come to the realization that there is nothing much to be gained by prolonged confrontation. Rapprochement must now be on their minds--because it is realistic for all concerned, and even mutually advantageous to both China and Taiwan.

Mariano Patalinjug

Oxen Author Profile Page:

"You dine with the Devil at your own peril..." truer words were never spoken.

Taiwanese will not accept political subservience to China. As the ancient Chinese saying goes, people here would "rather be the head of a chicken than the tail of a Phoenix" (寧做雞頭,不為鳳尾).

BUT, as the economic integration continues, Chinese leverage to force political surrender will continually increase, and eventually be used -- and people would probably rather be politically subservient than fight a war or have their economy ripped out from under them.

This is not a love fest. This is a trap.

DaveoftheCoonties Author Profile Page:

I visited Taipei when the National Palace Museum reopened a couple of years ago; at the time, there were warnings that the museum might soon be overwhelmed by tourists from across the strait.

Looks as though the tourism wave is about to begin. Couldn't happen to a more beautiful island.

Aprogressiveindependent Author Profile Page:

Peace across both sides of the Taiwan straits is desirable. China appears to be showing restraint as a regional rising power in the modern era, unlike the previous imperialist and warlike examples of Britain, France, Germany, Japan, Russia, the United States.

Chinese leaders seem to think increasing economic ties will lead to eventual political reunification. This is highly unlikely, as Taiwan becomes increasingly a de facto independent nation, in all but name.

factschecker Author Profile Page:

This is indeed a good development. The Chinese people on both sides want peace. They are brothers and sisters. Time has healed the wounds.

ztcb41 Author Profile Page:

"Good now U.S. needs to release itself to the Tiawnese Act and be done with Taiwan, China can have it, "OWNS/IT/ALREADY/CASE/CLOSED!

..."Now United States must remove itself from the Taiwanese Act, and hand the Island over to Mainland CHINA TO WHOM/IT/ALREADY/BELONGS!


infoshop Author Profile Page:

GOD damn it, the game is almost over.

evilmang0 Author Profile Page:

Margaret Lu,
You are what is termed, politely, a "fringe element", political analogues to UFO enthusiasts. There's no way the scenario which you are hyping, will ever be brought about.

How's your friend Ah Bian doing?

thmak Author Profile Page:

To Victoria2281947: USA and the overwhelming majority of countries in the world have emphatically declared that Taiwan is a part of China. So what you said in your post is legally irrelevant.

Victoria2281947 Author Profile Page:

The USMG has not been able to FINISH ITS OBLIGATION as the PRINCIPAL OCCUPYING POWER since 10-25-1945. The seized hostile Formosa and the Pescadores territories have become a seized friendly territories, but, those territories are still those territories that had been perpetually ceded to Japan by China in the Simonoseli Treaty in 1895.

Under the "Laws of War" that occupation (hostile, or friendly alike) does not transfer sovereignty.

Here, Formosa and the Pescadores are still occupied by a subordinate occupying power (the KMT-ROC-Chiang Kai-shek entity from the China theater of WWII) under the General order No.1 of the principal occupying authority (USMG of the Pacific theater WWII). The occupation has continued albeit the San Francisco Peace Treaty!!!

Remember, Chiang Kai-shek (aka Chiang Einstein, aka Chiang one stone) was no longer the legitimate ROC president when he fled mainland China to Taiwan. It was USMG let him be back to his business as the governing authority of the PUTATIVE REPUBLIC OF CHINA ENTITY on Taiwan. It was the USMG allowed him to promulgate the PUTATIVE ROC CONSTITUTION upon the people of Formosa and the Pescadores. He had a chance to found a Taiwan Republic if he chose to accept a Taiwan seat in the UN when the seat of China was succeeded by the PRC. In other words, he did not want to be the founding father of a Taiwan Republic, and would rather be a "PLO like" entity on Taiwan under USMG still.

A subordinate occupying power which had not participated in the Pacific theater at all, which had committed the February and March genocide war crime in Taiwan in 1947, impose unlawful Martial Law upon peaceful people under occupation, as well as White Terror...and many other war crimes, shall not be allowed to be RECOGNIZED as the LEGITIMATE representative of a Formosan popularity, a "PLO-like" entity at most.

An an observer of WHA, Taiwan won't have actual membership (as far as I can see), it has to be invited every year. It is a membership for "PLO like" entity.

The best policy is to let the PRINCIAPL OCCUPYING AUTHORITY--the USMG, still having effective jurisdiction over the seized Formosa and the Pescadores, the friendly territories, Formosan Cession, Pacific theater, WWII...help the Formosan people establish their own Formosan Civil Government under the Charter of UN ICCPR (International Covenant of Civil and Political Rights) which the US signed in 1993. Then, Taiwan would be able to join WHO as an associate member.

Margaret Lu, M.D. (http://massacreinmarch1947taiwan.blogspot.com)

shane_beck Author Profile Page:

China and Taiwan are already highly economically integrated. Whether Taiwan becomes under the political control of China remains to be seen.
You dine with the Devil at your own peril....

thmak Author Profile Page:

To Ilovelibby: USA has abolished slavery hundreds of years ago and will not accept any applications of slavery entity, such as the self-proclaimed United States Territory of American Formosa into the Union. USA worries that the corruptive nature of those traitorous so-called Formosans typified by Chen Shui-Bian will spoil the good American values. USA also will be afraid that those so called heinous Formosans may someday act as trojan horses for China causing problems for USA.

thmak Author Profile Page:

Too bad that there are no confrontational issues raised between China and the government in Taiwan so that Pomfret can yell to his hightest anti-China rhetorics. The China issues is so peaceful these days that Pomfret has to post flattering China in the future.

iewgnem Author Profile Page:

Taiwan is moving close to international recognition, "as the same territory as Hong Kong".

You don't really think China today, with what it just did at G20 would do anything to compromise on Taiwan today? People are a lot more sensitive to change, that is, once Taiwan starts to get used to the benifits of integration with mainland, its going to be a lot harder to backtrack on those than to remain isolationist. In other words, every step Taiwan takes to get closer to the mainland will be a step they can't undo. Obviously China's new strategy is enough of these steps and Taiwan will be as integrated as Hong Kong.

Hong Kong have its own team in the Olympics too, you know, but we all know who's in control.

Cueball2008 Author Profile Page:

John, it's certainly a good development. But there's a problem, as Taiwan won't have actual membership (as far as I can see), it has to be invited every year. Ergo if it doesn't dance to China's tune, Beijing will ensure it isn't invited. That leaves Taiwan in a difficult decision if China ever becomes unreasonable in demanding concessions.

This development, therefore, won't have any impact on stopping future conflict as China has given very little away. The real problem will be political ties, which China still is very inflexible over yet also insists must be addressed.

I wonder if you're perhaps not reading too much into this, maybe subconsciously, because you would prefer the Taiwan question "go away" and not affect America's relations with China. Well, sorry, it won't go away.

ilovelibby Author Profile Page:

How nice that the United States Territory of American Formosa's government will be invited to participate in the WHA as an observer sponsored by the USA much as the American Samoa observer mission associated with UNESCAP at Bangkok! It is high time that these non-self-governing territories of the United States should enjoy their UN Charter rights to self-determination and fuller international participation in the struggle for global human security and health rights!

tom616 Author Profile Page:

Good for Pres. Ma Ying-jeou! Never hurts to try the friendly approach to resolve "unresolvable" disputes. With Pres. Obama adopting the same approach, maybe we can live in a friendlier and safer world after all.

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