United Daily News Editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
October 24, 2015
Executive Summary: Tsai Ing-wen recently said “The DPP is not Taiwan. The KMT is not the Republic of China.” Coming from Tsai Ing-wen, this was a bolt out of the blue. But it reflect a long-standing misperception on Taiwan that "The DPP loves Taiwan, but the KMT does not." Was Tsai Ing-wen sincere when she uttered these words? We do not know. But she at least admitted this was a misperception. We hope she is not merely indulging in election rhetoric, and will act in accordance with what she said.
Full Text Below:
Tsai Ing-wen recently said “The DPP is not Taiwan. The KMT is not the Republic of China.” Coming from Tsai Ing-wen, this was a bolt out of the blue. But it reflect a long-standing misperception on Taiwan that "The DPP loves Taiwan, but the KMT does not." Was Tsai Ing-wen sincere when she uttered these words? We do not know. But she at least admitted this was a misperception. We hope she is not merely indulging in election rhetoric, and will act in accordance with what she said.
The KMT is indeed not synonymous with the ROC. It is true that the KMT lost control o fthe Mainland. But the Republic of China still exists. It still governs Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu. It still has US military support. The Two Chiangs never forgot their ultimate goal, "the reunification of China". The KMT lost to the DPP in 2000. But the ROC continues to exist. Not only did it have democratic checks and balances, it also had the United States watching Chen Shui-bian's every move. That is why Chen lamented that "I just can't do it. It's impossible" when pressured to change the name of the nation to the "Republic of Taiwan".
When the KMT and ordinary citizens defend the ROC, the DPP vilifies them, saying they "do not love Taiwan". The Republic of China did not come into existence In 1949, when the government moved to Taiwan. It came into existence at the end of the Qing Dynasty. The Republic of China has governed the Taiwan Region of China by itself even longer than it governed the nation as a whole. Yet the DPP has denounced ROC history texts for "distorting history". It has even manipulated the words "Republic of China" on passports, and encouraged people to cover the words with stickers. Now all of a sudden, the DPP has changed its tune. Now it claims it "has always upheld the Republic of China". Is the DPP serious? Is it being facetious? Or is it merely chanting a campaign slogan? No matter which it may be, it has definitely raised eyebrows.
The DPP is indeed not synonymous with Taiwan. Yet the DPP often considers Taiwan its private property. Tsai Ing-wen said, "The Republic of China is a government in exile". She attempted to sever the connection between the Republic of China and Taiwan, to alienate the Republic of China from Taiwan. Tsai Ing-wen shouted "Win back Taiwan!" She attempted to sever the connection between the KMT and Taiwan. She regards Taiwan as the private domain of the DPP. During the last presidential election, Tsai Ing-wen's campaign slogan was "I am Taiwanese. I am Tsai Ing-wen". The DPP was in essence, asserting an exclusive right to the term "Taiwanese". Tsai's intent was to create "ethnic" divisions, and benefit from them during the election.
DPP members often use the term "Taiwanese" (people) and "Taiwanese" (language) in an exclusionary manner. Citizens from other provinces, Hakkas, Aborigines, and recent immigrants are considered non-entities. Mandarin, Hakka, aboriginal languages, and languages spoken by recent immigrants are viewed as irrelevant. This is naked Hoklo Chauvinism. Meanwhile, Lee Teng-hui would return Taiwan to his colonial motherland Japan. On this, Tsai Ing-wen's silence was deafening. She obdurately refused to criticize him, and instead demanded "tolerance". Is this not insanity? That is why when a DPP official suddenly says she does not consider Taiwan a DPP party asset or campaign asset, no one believes her.
The KMT after all, founded the Republic of China. Countless party members shed blood to found Asia's first democratic republic. True, the KMT once failed to distinguish between party and state. It practiced single-party dictatorship. But military rule evolved into political tutelage, and political tutelage evolved into constitutional rule. Martial law was lifted, and a democratic system was instituted. The historical thread remained unbroken. The KMT has indeed been the guardian of the Republic of China. Many blue camp supporters may not like the Kuomintang. But they are loyal defenders of the Republic of China. To them the KMT is hardly synonymous with the ROC.
Tsai Ing-wen is on her final mile to the presidency. She continues to sidle up to the Republic of China. She proclaims her desire to "maintain the status quo", and "uphold the Republic of China constitutional framework". But on National Day, when singing the national anthem, she skips over key lyrics. Her posturing remains hit and miss. She realizes she must mend the rift over national identity. After all, she is running for President of the Republic of China. This shows that the "Republic of China" is one thing that unites the 23 million people on Taiwan, Penghu, Kinmen and Matsu.
Lest we forget, Tsai Ing-wen was the author of the "two-states theory". Yet she is now embracing the ROC and the ROC constitutional framework. Is this political deceit? Does this represent a genuine desire to defuse opposition over reunification and independence? People have not forgotten the last time the DPP deceived them. Chen Shui-bian played his "new centrist path" card and his "five noes" card. Blue and green camp supporters alike approved. But the moment he seized power, he immediately began hacking away at the ROC and the ROC flag, dividing people to rally election support. He pandered to Taiwan independence fundamentalists. Even Frank Hsieh's "constitutional one China" was rejected as beyond the pale.
Tsai Ing-wen recently said "The DPP is no synonymous with Taiwan, the KMT is not synonymous with the Republic of China". This reeks of sophistry. Is the DPP genuinely willing to take such a step? If so, it merits a "like". Is the term "Taiwan" no longer a means for inciting "ethnic" tensions? Has the Republic of China become a shared asset of the ruling and opposition parties? If so, this is a positive development. Will the Democratic Progressive Party assume power? Whether it will or not, we hope it will do what it says and continue to reduce opposition, increase cohesion on the road ahead.
The DPP must scale back its manipulation of "ethnic" tensions. It must renounce its Hoklo Chauvinist mentality. Most of all, it must abandon its deluded affection for a Japanese colonial motherland. Given Taiwan back to the Republic of China. Give the Republic of China back to the people of Taiwan.
聽起來荒謬無比的「兩個不等於」敘述， 卻真實反映了台灣存在已久的認同落差和政治歧見。這項敘述， 其實是對流行已久的「民進黨等於愛台，國民黨等於不愛台」謬論， 做了一次簡單的反思。此語出自蔡英文之口，無論真心或假意， 顯示她承認原來的二分法並不正確；希望這不只是她一句選舉語言， 而能說到做到。
中華民國仍然存在，因為還有台澎金馬，還有美軍協防， 兩蔣也念茲在茲「統一中國」；所以國民黨雖在台灣丟掉過執政權， 中華民國也還在，因為還有民主制衡，還有美國盯著， 陳水扁才會說改國號「做不到就是做不到」。
卻常常被民進黨醜化為「不愛台灣」。中華民國的存在， 並不是從民國三十八年政府遷台才開始，而始於清朝的終結， 中華民國在台灣的歷史甚至遠要比在大陸久長許多年； 但以中華民國史觀所撰寫的教科書，卻被民進黨批評是「扭曲歷史」 。甚至連護照上的「中華民國」字樣，都要動手動腳， 慫恿民眾用貼紙遮蔽。也因此，民進黨最近突然改口說自己「 一直捍衛中華民國的存在」，無論這是認同、嘲諷、或選舉語言， 都令人側目。
蔡英文曾說「中華民國是流亡政府」， 粗暴切斷中華民國和台灣的臍帶連結，讓台灣外隔於中華民國； 蔡英文也曾高喊「把台灣贏回來」， 那是硬生生切割國民黨與台灣的關係，把台灣視為民進黨的私產。 上次總統大選，蔡英文的文宣結語是：「我是台灣人，我是蔡英文」 ，這不啻將「台灣人」擁為民進黨的專利標籤，意圖分化族群， 從選舉獲取漁利。
視外省籍、客家人、原住民和新住民等多元族群如無物，棄國語、 客家話、原住民語和新住民語等多元母語如敝屣， 這是福佬沙文主義作風。相形之下， 對於李登輝要把台灣推回殖民祖國的日本，蔡英文倒是刻意包容， 未置一詞，這豈不錯亂乖謬！凡此種種，要說民進黨未將「台灣」 視為自己獨攬的選舉資產，恐怕無人相信。
創建了亞洲第一個民主共和國。儘管國民黨有過黨國不分、 一黨獨大、威權統治的歷史，但從軍政、訓政到憲政， 從動員戡亂到解嚴、乃至民主制度的落實，歷史一脈相承， 國民黨確實是中華民國的守護者。許多藍營支持者未必喜歡國民黨， 卻忠實捍衛中華民國的存在；可見，在他們中心， 國民黨不等於中華民國。
維持現狀」到「中華民國憲政體制」說，到參加國慶卻在國歌跳詞； 其姿態斧鑿斑斑，卻也顯示她知道必須修補這個感情裂痕， 跨越這個認同鴻溝。畢竟，她正在競選的，是「中華民國」的總統。 這證明，「中華民國」 確實是台澎金馬這塊土地上的兩千三百萬人民的最大公約數。
中華民國憲法架構，究竟是基於政治權謀，或有意化解統獨對立？ 人們仍未忘記，上次民進黨執政，陳水扁曾打出「新中間路線」、「 四不一沒有」等訴求，獲得不分藍綠的民眾認同； 但當其執政出現問題時，他卻毫不猶豫地拿中華民國來開刀、祭旗， 以撕裂族群來凝聚支持；他轉向台獨基本教義派靠攏，連謝長廷的「 憲法一中」都容不下。
雖然充滿詭辯的心思，但民進黨願意跨出這步反省， 仍值得為它按個「讚」。如果「台灣」不再成為操弄族群的工具，「 中華民國」成為朝野共同認定的資產，無論如何， 是值得肯定的發展；也希望不論民進黨執政與否，都能說到做到， 繼續向化解對立、凝聚認同之路前進。