OPINION / EDITORIAL
Taiwan authorities treat US senators’ visit as a lifesaver: Global Times editorial
Published: Jun 06, 2021 09:00 PM
Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

Illustration: Liu Rui/GT

Three US senators made a flying visit to the island of Taiwan Sunday morning. They flew on a US C-17 transport plane from South Korea to the island's Songshan Airport, where they met with Tsai Ing-wen and other regional officials. After a three-hour stay, the three senators flew back to South Korea without even leaving the airport.

According to the island's Central News Agency, the visit by the three senators was an impromptu addition to their trip to Asia. During their short stay, the three senators said some encouraging words to the Taiwan authorities and announced that the US would send the island 750,000 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine from its first batch of 25 million donated doses. No matter how nice the words may sound, 750,000 doses of vaccine obviously is a drop in the bucket for the 23 million people on the island of Taiwan.

Currently, the Taiwan region is not only failing in the prevention of the epidemic, but also suffering from an acute shortage of vaccines. It has led to the strong dissatisfaction of many people on the island with the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), whose approval rating has been declining. The three US senators came to the island to show their support of the DPP authorities. However, the island's authorities are less concerned with solving practical problems. Instead, they are playing politics to muddle through the mess.

Unable to control the epidemic, the DPP authorities need to amplify the political implications of the US senators' visit. As Japan delivered about 1.24 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines on Friday, now the Taiwan authorities could say that the "democratic alliance" has been strengthened in the face of both the epidemic and the Chinese mainland. They would make such a remark as a specious argument to justify why Taiwan refused to use vaccines from the Chinese mainland, even though it needs the vaccines badly.

The three US senators' visit is another cut closer to the bone - the one-China principle - in the salami-slicing tactics adopted by the US and the island of Taiwan. On Saturday, 37 died from the epidemic on the island. Yet, the DPP authorities are still in the mood for such a sinister game. Are they trying to provoke the mainland and create a major crisis in the Taiwan Straits? It is a shame that they are putting political calculations over epidemic prevention and human lives.

We would like to warn the US and authorities on the island: If they play salami-slicing tactics over the one-China principle, it is their fingers that will get cut off in the end. In particular, we would like to warn the DPP authorities: If they are determined to act as an anti-mainland front to not only confront the mainland but also cooperate with the increasingly aggressive US actions against the mainland, they are definitely on the road to their own destruction. Even though when and how they will end remain unknown, they should know better than the Americans where and what the endpoint is.

We want to say that the power of the mainland has allowed us to take the lead in resolving the Taiwan question. The Taiwan authorities' tricks with the US are only on a tactical level. They cannot reverse the strategic clock or the balance of power across the Taiwan Straits. Many of the Taiwan authorities' acts are death throes. With power in its hands, the Chinese mainland needs to be more confident. The mainland's power has left Taiwan nowhere to escape. The more tricks the Taiwan authorities play, the more they will help the mainland accumulate moral superiority in settling the Taiwan question.

Some Chinese mainland netizens call Taiwan secessionist forces "Taiwan frogs." This is reasonable because they are like frogs in a well. With no vision at all, they have chosen the stupid path of full-scale confrontation with the mainland, putting themselves in a strategic dead end. Step by step, they are pushing themselves into the most dangerous position of being cannon fodder for US strategy.

Such Taiwan authorities have no intention or power to fight the epidemic at all. Most of their thoughts are placed on how to show loyalty to the US, and how to be a loyal anti-Chinese mainland pawn of the US to make Washington protect their safety. They seem to care little about the cost of more lives being lost to COVID-19. Their only concern is how to manipulate ideology to make Taiwan residents believe such a cost is "reasonable" and "worthy." The Taiwan authorities have gone further on the road of betraying Taiwan residents' fundamental interests. They are completely betraying Taiwan.
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