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F-16 pilot confirmed killed in crash


Military personnel walk past police officers yesterday in New Taipei City’s Ruifang District on their way to help in the search for a missing F-16 fighter jet and its pilot.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times

The pilot of an F-16 air force jet that went missing yesterday while taking part in the live-fire drills of the annual Han Kuang exercise has been confirmed dead, after rescuers found body parts and other items on Wufenshan (五分山) in New Taipei City.

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Chinese identity was short-lived

In 1992, only 17.6 percent of Taiwanese considered themselves “Taiwanese,” but in last year’s survey by National Chengchi University (NCCU), less than 4 percent of Taiwanese considered themselves exclusively “Chinese.”

Taiwanese identity has waxed and waned over the past few centuries, influenced by various internal and external forces.

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Trump sees Taiwan as reliable ally

The US did not invite the Chinese navy to participate in the Rim of the Pacific Exercise this year. This presents a good opportunity to bolster Taiwan-US military ties. The question is how the government should go about ensuring its participation in the exercise in accordance with the 2018 US National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

In comparison with former US president Barack Obama’s brain trust, US President Donald Trump’s national security team is better at telling friend from foe and seeing Beijing for what it really is. Trump’s team is also capable of proposing strategies to counter the challenges posed by China.

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Confronting Chinese aggression

A sign of the increasing cooperation between Taiwanese military and defense officials and their US counterparts was the presence of two senior Taiwanese officers at the change of command ceremony for the US Pacific Command in Hawaii on Wednesday.

A sign of the continued sensitivity of such ties was that the government has not publicly identified the pair, although Administrative Deputy Minister of Defense Lieutenant General Shen Yi-ming (沈一鳴) was seen in a live stream of the event on the command’s Facebook page, and Chinese-language media reports have said that Chief of General Staff Admiral Lee Hsi-ming (李喜明) was the other.

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Time to heal the authoritarian era wounds, Tsai says


From left, President Tsai Ing-wen, Presidential Office Secretary-General Chen Chu, Transitional Justice Commission Chairman Huang Huang-hsiung and Premier William Lai unveil the plaque of the Transitional Justice Commission at a news conference in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Liao Chen-huei, Taipei Times

The Transitional Justice Commission tasked with uncovering the history of political repression during the Martial Law era was formally launched yesterday at a ceremony attended by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) and Premier William Lai (賴清德).

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Beijing unease calls for boldness

Taiwan’s loss of two diplomatic allies in less than a month says much about the recent state of mind of China’s leaders, President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) said on Thursday last week in response to news that Burkina Faso had cut ties with Taiwan.

Beijing’s increased suppression and bullying tactics are due mainly to its sense of unease and lack of confidence, and they do not demonstrate strength, Tsai said.

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Newsflash

Former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) revealed in an interview that some pro-independence groups did not like the idea of seeing former vice president Annette Lu (呂秀蓮) take over the presidency should he step down at the height of the corruption allegations against him in 2006, adding that his resignation would only have led to the collapse of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

Lu said Chen told the "Formosa Weekly," which she founded, his side of the story regarding the “red shirt campaign” organized by former DPP chairman Shih Ming-teh (施明德) to depose Chen in 2006.