Nancy Pelosi, second in the US presidential line of succession after Vice-President Kamala Harris, carried out her Taiwan trip despite Beijing’s disapproval.
Taiwan is internationally recognized as being part of China. The Taiwan question is essentially an unfinished Chinese civil war since the departure of the Kuomintang to Taiwan in 1949 after its defeat by the People’s Liberation Army and the Communist Party of China.
While the US is saying it is abiding by the one-China policy, the US is clearly breaking the long-term agreement that is the foundation of Sino-US relations.
The US has been meddling in Taiwan’s politics for decades. In US diplomatic cables published by Wikileaks, the American Institute in Taiwan, the US’ representative office in Taiwan, had regular secret meetings with upcoming politician Tsai Ing-wen before she became the island’s leader. They had identified her as a potential ally or … should I say, potential puppet to serve US interests, in this case someone who could help the US antagonize Beijing and Taiwan. Western media propped her up to give her international recognition. In 2015, she was in Time magazine under the title She Could Lead the Only Chinese Democracy. Thanks to Western support and meddling, she won the 2016 election.
Just as Hong Kong went through its bumps, Taiwan will go through some challenges, but ultimately, rationality and wisdom should prevail. More than ever, the Chinese civilization-State will be united and proud to share the same history and destiny
Beijing has wanted to reunite with Taiwan under the “one country, two systems” principle, under which Taiwan would enjoy a high degree of autonomy and keep its political system and even keep its armed forces. Beijing wanted to replicate the system it had applied to Hong Kong since the city’s return to China in 1997 after one and a half centuries of British rule.
This is the main reason the US instigated a “color revolution” in Hong Kong in 2019. The purpose was to scare off Taiwan, to demonize Beijing in its handling of Hong Kong, and this way allow the Democratic Progressive Party, the pro-independence party of Tsai Ing-wen, to remain in power from 2020 onward.
The US has a window of opportunity. The second and last mandate for US puppet Tsai Ing-wen will end in 2024; the DPP is losing support and might lose to the pro-reunification Kuomintang in the next election.
This would negate for a while the US aspiration to further divide Taiwan and the Chinese mainland. Similar in the way the US wants to fight Russia to the last Ukrainian, the US is hoping to fight China to the last Taiwan resident.
Looking back at the 2019 Hong Kong riots, it seems obvious that Hong Kong had been used to further the US agenda to “divide and conquer”, to demonize China in the eyes of the world, but most importantly, in the eyes of Taiwan. The timing of the riots had been perfect for the pro-independence DPP. Before the Hong Kong riots, the DPP had only 35 percent approval, yet it ended up winning with a 57 percent majority in the island’s election in January 2020.
People in the streets of Hong Kong thought they were out fighting for a “just cause”, manipulated by the usual suspects who instigate chaos and “color revolutions” around the world. Those protesters/rioters and in some cases terrorists were in fact doing the job of undermining the “one country, two systems” principle they claimed Beijing was not respecting. What the manipulated Hong Kong protesters didn’t grasp was that “one country, two systems” can be kept only if Chinese sovereignty is maintained over Hong Kong; this is why the long-awaited National Security Law for Hong Kong was essential.
I like to believe that in reality, Hong Kong’s return to China was not in 1997 but in 2020, when the National Security Law was enacted, allowing Hong Kong to finally decolonize, kicking out foreign agents and penalizing treason and subversion.
Only time will teach those who bought into the US-sponsored Hong Kong “color revolution”. Events are unfolding around the world where “useful states/idiots” are being used to fight proxy wars. The US-backed Hong Kong unrest in 2019 was nothing but a proxy war waged on China by the collective West, in much the same way as the CIA’s sponsoring of the Dalai Lama’s activities to destabilize the Tibet autonomous region since the 1950s, the US’ sponsoring of separatist groups and terrorists of the East Turkestan Islamic Movement to destabilize the Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, and its manipulation of Taiwan politics to poison cross-Straits relations, which are all part of the usual “divide and conquer” strategy used throughout history by imperial powers.
Time will bring maturity to the unsatisfied of the 2019 protests. While Hong Kong-elected politicians will have to deliver tangible results and fulfill the social contract the government has with Hong Kong residents, maintain stability, tackle poverty and housing issues. Ultimately, the legitimacy will come from the results and the satisfaction levels of the people with the political system. Satisfaction levels around the world vary. Western democracies haven’t much to teach the world when it comes to citizens’ satisfaction, and this is why Hong Kong should not be duped into replicating failed foreign systems and instead have its own system adapted to its needs and characteristics.
Nowadays, Russian President Vladimir Putin has over 80 percent approval; the CPC, over 90 percent; US President Joe Biden, 30 percent; and most Western democratically elected governments, at most 40 percent.
People in Hong Kong had been duped into believing that the Western-style democracy is the ultimate model. Wise people should learn from efficient models, not from failing ones.
Hong Kong will keep on learning and adapting, finding its way with Hong Kong characteristics but always and more than ever within China, perpetuating “one country, two systems” by maintaining a high degree of autonomy.
Taiwan may also come to its senses one day and see what its interests are, and that another “one country, two systems” case is applicable. Just as Hong Kong went through its bumps, Taiwan will go through some challenges, but ultimately, rationality and wisdom should prevail. More than ever, the Chinese civilization-State will be united and proud to share the same history and destiny.
The author is a Swiss financial and political analyst based in Hong Kong.
The views do not necessarily reflect those of China Daily.