CHINA / POLITICS
Taiwan DPP’s suppression of US critics ignites reflection on islands’ Afghan-like future
Published: Aug 19, 2021 03:22 PM
A US Chinook helicopter flies over the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan on Sunday. Helicopters are landing at the US embassy there as diplomatic vehicles leave the compound as the Taliban advance on the Afghan capital. Photo: VCG

A US Chinook helicopter flies over the U.S. Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan on Sunday. Helicopters are landing at the US embassy there as diplomatic vehicles leave the compound as the Taliban advance on the Afghan capital. Photo: VCG


As the world watches what has unfolded in Afghanistan, many have criticized the US for the habit of abandoning its allies in times of trouble. But the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) authority of Taiwan is downplaying the huge blow to the US' reputation and attacking those who discuss whether Taiwan will be the next to be abandoned by the US. 

In response, many people on the island are criticizing such attitude of the DPP, for example, media personality Jaw Shaw-Kong asked for an open debate with regional leader Tsai Ing-wen on the US’ role and Afghanistan's situation as well as cross-Straits relations. 

The recent events in Afghanistan have "shocked" US allies and partners, who criticized the US’ hasty withdrawal as a humiliation and a striking blow to US' credibility. However, "under the hoodwinked policies of the DPP, the majority of people in Taiwan don't know Afghanistan's situation might be a warning to Taiwan," Jaw said on his facebook account on Sunday. 

Jaw's remarks and those of others who have expressed similar concerns have come under fierce criticism from the DPP in recent days, who claimed that it's unreasonable to compare Afghanistan with Taiwan as the latter is more important and people like Jaw are stoking anxiety in order to cooperate with the mainland to intimidate Taiwan, Taiwan media reported. 

In response, Jaw was cited by Taiwan media on Wednesday as saying that the whole world is criticizing the US after its withdrawal – from the leaders of Germany and France to The New York Times and even some from the Democratic party.

The DPP isn't telling the truth, and it's not allowing others to do so. And when anyone tries to, they accuse the person of "echoing and colluding with the mainland." "They are deceiving themselves and trying to fool the people of Taiwan," Jaw was quoted as saying in Taiwan media. 

Jaw proposed to have an open debate with Tsai over the topic of the Afghan situation and the US as well as the cross-Straits ties to see "who genuinely loves Taiwan."

Currently, under the strict supervision of the DPP, media in the Taiwan island have mostly avoided topics that may embarrass the US, nor do they question the DPP's lies like “the US will rescue Taiwan,” Chang Ching, a research fellow at the Society for Strategic Studies based in the island, wrote in an article published in United Daily News.

The Taiwan authorities have narrowed their international views to only Washington and Tokyo – even the death of a dog in the White House would meet with Tsai’s flattering concerns; while there is no response to the flood in the EU and the assassination of a president in Haiti, Chang mocked. 

In response to discussions over whether Taiwan is the next Afghanistan to be abandoned by the US, Chang said, “Wasn't the island already abandoned by the US in 1979?” 

Tsai made a speech on the issue on Wednesday saying that Taiwan should make its existence more meaningful and become an "indispensable part" of democracy. She declared that Taiwan's only option is to make itself stronger, more united and more determined to defend itself. 

Some Taiwan netizens mocked the remarks, reiterating the fact that half of the people in Taiwan disagree with DPP's policies of catering to the US. Some have warned that Tsai's remarks are dangerous and once the DPP crosses the bottom line of the mainland and lead to reunification by military actions, Tsai will be the first one to flee. 

Global Times

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