Lee Teng-hui: Sovereignty matters in Municipal Elections

While Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) chairwoman and DPP candidate for mayorship of Sinbei City (新北市) Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) told Taiwan’s Apple Daily edition in September that the municipal elections – to be held on November 27 this year – were about dealing with local issues, former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) pointed out in an interview on Thursday night that the municipal elections, if won by the DPP, could prompt the KMT to review president Ma Ying-jeou‘s nomination for a second presidential election. In short, the municipal elections’ theme, in Lee Teng-hui’s view, are about “abandoning Ma, protecting Taiwan” (棄馬保台, qì Mǎ bǎo Tái).

The report by the Liberty Times also quotes Lee as saying that the 1992 Consensus (九二共識) advanced by Ma didn’t actually exist (根本不存在). Lee reportedly also  alleged that Ma’s concept was “ultimate unification” and that the president had simply referred to himself as “Mr” during a visit by China’s Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait Chen Yunlin, not daring to adhere to his presidential title (陳雲林來台時馬自稱為「先生」,不敢堅持總統的正式稱謂).

According to Wikipedia as of November 18 (apparently quoting a Liberty Times edition of the time as a source),

the Chen visit was seen as a test for Ma’s commitment to keep Taiwan a sovereign nation, and many critics have reason to believe he [Ma Ying-jeou] failed dismally. First, national flags were ordered to be taken away in all places that Chen set foot on. Footage of an officer violently breaking a flag on a highway overhead was disclosed by the media and shocked the society. Citizens carrying national flags were also brutally treated by the police, while pro-China extremists carrying the Chinese national flag were given upmost protection. Second, Ma allowed Chen to refer to him as “you” or “Mr. Ma,” but with no mention of the term “president,” and did not mention the words “president” or “country.” Third, Ma ordered massive crackdowns on peaceful protestors, including students, senior citizens, and women, leading to the most violent police assault since Taiwan embraced full democracy.

Referring to an apparent refusal by the Ma administration to provide a car for former Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe‘s meetings with oppositional DPP’s officials earlier this month, Lee said that when Abe paid him a visit, also earlier this month, Taiwan’s foreign ministry hadn’t provided the former Japanese premier with a car either.


More posts referring to Chen Yunlin
“Any title but President”, China Post, Nov. 1, 2008

Update / Related
What is the ROC, Frozen Garlic, Aug. 31, 2010

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