John D. Schaeffer / Geog 128
Writing Assignment #3
?China Says Taiwan Cannot Continue Delaying Reunion?
China has issued an 11,000 word report entitled ?The One-China Principle and the Taiwan Issue.? The report sends a signal to the Taiwanese government that the powers in Beijing are growing impatient with recent delays in the reunification negotiations. Although the report mentions no formal timeline for official reunification, it has become clear China is not about to give up on effort to bring Taiwan firmly under the Chinese flag. China has offered to allow differing political systems under one united country. Despite this, Taiwan?s President, Lee Teng-hui, continues to meet Chinese government officials on a separated ?state-to-state basis.? By allowing multiple types of political systems to coexist under one main government, China has showed a surprising amount of diplomacy, especially when compared to past Socialist policy-making with break-away states.
Taiwan has clearly been dragging its feet in the reunification process, citing that China?s terms appear too constraining in nature. Moreover, and beyond constraining, changing from a prospering democracy to any blend of capitalism/socialism seems an unfavorable task in the eyes of many Taiwanese citizens. Unfortunately, China?s stand is a firm one on a fine line: any attempts to formally gain independence by Taiwan will result a grave response of force by the mainland military. Although experts think China is logistically incapable of invading Taiwan, it seems only a matter of time until reunification occurs. China?s terms are not seen as entirely unfavorable; nobody wants war; a powerful country displaying acceptable geopolitical codes wishes to reunite with a territory once considered Chinese. The cards are in China?s favor and America might be seen as an unnecessary interloper in China?s rightful affairs. Remaining questionable is how far the United States will go before it urges Taiwan to find reasonable terms with which to rejoin China peacefully. It?s doubtful the United States will be drawn into a military conflict unless China suddenly displays an utter lack of diplomacy with a surprise act of war. With China?s behavior up to now, most of the decision-making remains in the hands of Taiwanese government officials.
Through the implementation of reasonable geopolitical codes, China should resolve this situation peacefully. Hard-line tactics work sometimes, but this issue displays an example of how cooperation between two different economic societies may someday coexist within the same territory. One possible reason for Taiwanese officials? slowing of the process may be a general and understandable reluctance to experience rapid societal change. Much of the world would contest democracy?s superiority over socialism, but China has made a good argument for their political system in its offering to bend a little bit as well. China not only wants an ally in Taiwan, Beijing wants countrymen. Should Taiwan make any official moves toward independence, China would consider this a crushing blow to its sovereignty and border integrity, quickly making Taiwan an offshore enemy.
A very serious situation exists between China and Taiwan, mainly because fixed institutions in Taiwan face major changes in times to come. Many Taiwanese government officials admit negotiations will have to resume soon. China will ideally acquire Taiwan as a state under the Chinese flag while maintaining reasonable policy with the United States government. Under these terms lie the most fruit for a healthy relationship between these three countries. Most likely, China?s terms for reunification will evolve to a point where the United States may find it beneficial to encourage Taiwan to reunify and cut their losses. This will hold true to the stated American policy of backing the ?One-China? ideology while at the same time ensuring the process is fair for Taiwan.