Sunday, December 04, 2016

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The US relationship with Taiwan is about to change with Trump

12/04/2016 Taiwan Explorer

John Bolton, former US Ambassador to the United Nations and a possible candidate for the future US Secretary of State, went on Fox News today and talked about Trump's call with Taiwan's President Tsai, that threw the US mainstream media in a huge frenzy, as well as the relationship with China, that is about to change. This is my transcript of the conversation with the host (watch the video here):

Host: "If you've read all the headlines last night that were coming out, Donald Trump accepting a phone call from the President of Taiwan, congratulating him on becoming President could upset decades of diplomacy between the US and China."

Bolton: "It's ridiculous that a phone call could upset decades of anything, but I do think it's important that people understand, the President of the United States should talk with whomever he wants, if he thinks it's in the interest of the United States, and nobody in Beijing gets to dictate who we talk to. My view has been for some time that we should be upgrading our relations with Taiwan, and I know this is gonna cause heartburn in Beijing, but it's a reality. This is a nation of over 20 million people, they have a democratic government, a free press, a free market, they meet all the customary international laws of statehood, so when a democratically elected leader calls the President of the United Utates, I say you bet he takes the call."

Host: "Why the hysteria then? Why the mainstream media in the left saying he's shaking up the relationship?"

Bolton: "Honestly, I think we should shake this relationship up. For the past several years China has made aggressive, I would say, near belligerent claims in the South China Sea. They've declared it to be Chinese province, the've established a provincial capital. And what that means is they're taking a vast amount of water out the international waters, or waters where there is a right of international passage, and making it Chinese territorial waters. They're trying to put their hands around the throats of the economies of Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and others. It has a direct impact on the United States. They also think Taiwan's a province. You wanna talk about provinces, China? We'll talk."

Fox News and Bolton suddenly appear moderate and well-balanced here. As a liberal, I have never thought I would say something like that, but it would be a lie, if I claimed otherwise.

US liberal media fail

The US liberal media, still not over the fact that Trump won, threw a collective hissy fit after yesterday's phone call between Tsai and Trump. The shameful reactions were exposed by seasoned Taiwan commentator and expert Michael Turton. Just like him, I am also a progressive and not a Trump supporter, but very disappointed with Obama's policies in this part of the world, and his treatment of Taiwan. I love this quote by Turton:

Hey, American progressives! The future President of the United States called the head of a state that directly elects its president, which has a world leading national health insurance program, no guns, and may soon legalize gay marriage. Check your values: which side are you on here?

While media elites sit in their glass towers in New York and Washington and predict doom and gloom after a mere phone call, those of us who live in Taiwan in the past few years have observed a more and more assertive and aggressive China, that is systematically cracking down on people in Tibet and East Turkestan (just a week ago they started to confiscate passports of Turkmens, where was the collective media outrage then?), suppressing Hong Kong's democratic movement and making critics disappear (remember the disappearing booksellers?), constantly threatening Japan and Taiwan with the use of force, supporting North Korea, and literally annexing islands and huge bodies of water and proclaiming it its own territory in the South China Sea. I'm really tired of the so called "China experts" treating the Communist Party like a small kid, that shall not be angered, otherwise it will throw tantrums. It's time for China to grow up. It's time for the media to check which side they're on.