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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Google’s wake-up call to the world

Google’s announcement on Jan. 12 that it would pull out of China because of hacking and restrictions on searches keyed on the google.cn platform was a shot heard around the world.

While the shot fired in 1775 by a US minuteman in Concord, Massachusetts, was a sign that the colonies were no longer willing to endure restrictions imposed by a repressive British Empire, the Google shot may be a wake-up call to those in the business and political communities that have chafed under restrictions imposed by Beijing.


The benefits of putting up a fight

After Internet giant Google stood up to China and announced that it might pull out of the Chinese market in response to censorship and hacking activities there, it will be very interesting to see how things develop.

Transnational corporations with investments in China must strike a balance between ideology and profit — a balancing act that applies especially to Google, as its services touch on the free flow of information, a freedom that is highly sensitive to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).


A sergeant at arms wouldn’t help

Images of brawling legislators are a common sight in Taiwan — and this embarrassment appears unlikely to end any time soon. Rational negotiation and compromise are rare in Taiwanese politics.

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Secretary-General King Pu-tsung (金浦聰) has suggested that the legislature follow the example of other countries and employ a sergeant at arms in the legislature to maintain order by commanding guards when things get out of hand.


KMT asserts ownership of Taiwan prosecutors

The impeachment by the Control Yuan of Supreme Public Prosecutor Chen Tsung-ming Tuesday marks the reassertion of ownership over Taiwan's prosecutors by the President Ma Ying-jeou's ruling Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang) and has grave implications for the defense of judicial independence and basic human rights for all Taiwan citizens.

On Tuesday, the Control Yuan voted by an eight to three margin to impeach the chief public prosecutor and file an injunction to force his resignation three years before his fixed term was scheduled to end only a week after a similar vote failed for lack of evidence.


Taiwan and the future in the U.S.-Japan alliance

On January 19, 1960, the U.S. and Japan signed a far reaching "U.S.-Japan Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security" over the intense opposition of opposition lawmakers and violent demonstrations by leftist labor and student organizations.

Surely, few of the participants in those events believed that the treaty would continue to exist a half century later.


An impeachment to dismember

The impeachment of State Public Prosecutor-General Chen Tsung-ming (陳聰明), which triggered a mass resignation of 14 of his prosecutorial appointees, was first and foremost a political act.

Chen resigned shortly after the Control Yuan’s decision was handed down on Tuesday. Nominated by former president Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), Chen Tsung-ming is the first top prosecutor to suffer this fate.

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Former president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) office yesterday issued a statement denying allegations that Chen had taken advantage of his overseas trips to transport cash abroad.

The statement came in response to a story published by the Chinese-language China Times yesterday that quoted Palauan President Johnson Toribiong as saying that an unidentified wire of NT$1.4 billion (US$40 million) was routed through Palau’s Pacific Savings Bank in 2005 to the US and other countries.