Sunday, March 15, 2009


The Chinese charm offensive just means China would like to win the struggle with Taiwan without fighting.

But never forget that the PLA (on the occasion of their 80th anniversary) believes it is the ultimate factor in winning this struggle:

The anniversary also brought a reminder that preventing Taiwan’s full independence remains the Chinese military’s key mission.

Beijing has vowed to bring Taiwan under its rule, by force if necessary. China and Taiwan have faced off since the end of the Chinese civil war in 1949, when Nationalist forces retreated to the island after losing to the Communists.

Though Hu did not directly mention Taiwan, Defence Minister Cao Gangchuan was quoted as saying on Tuesday that China had the ability and will to stop the island formally declaring independence.

I'm reminded of our policy of detente during the Cold War. We thought of it as lessening tensions to lead to peaceful coexistence. But that was our view and not the view of Moscow. The Soviets saw it differently, as Brezhnew said in 1976:

Detente does not in any way rescind, nor can it rescind or alter, the laws of class struggle. We do not conceal the fact that we see detente a path towards the creation of more favourable conditions for the peaceful construction of socialism and communism.

(A History of the English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900, p. 557.)

Yet while the Soviets never concealed that fact, many in the West told themselves that the Soviet goal was the same as ours.

How many Taiwanese, or Americans in our administration, believe China has abandoned their goal of crushing Taiwanese democracy and ruling Taiwan no better than Tibet?