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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Afghanistan: Opportunity for Taiwan

Pundits have busied themselves in the past week trying to determine whether a decision by Taipei to renegotiate US beef imports with Washington will have implications on US security commitments to Taiwan. Already, an unexpected delay in US President Barack Obama’s weapons sale notification to Congress — which had been expected soon after Obama returned from climate talks in Copenhagen last month — had prompted speculation that Washington may be tying economic matters to political ones and retaliating for the about-face.


Defense contractors give Obama advice on Taiwan security

Rupert Hammond-Chambers, president of the U.S.-Taiwan Business Council, has written a sharply worded report on weapons sales to Taiwan that is critical of President Barack Obama.

The trade group is a high-powered consortium of top defense contractors including Lockheed Martin, Boeing Co, and Raytheon Corporation. U.S. Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and John D. Rockefeller (D-VA) are honorary co-chairs of the council. Chairman of the Board is Paul Wolfowitz, former head of the World Bank.


U.S. should understand Taiwan's beef stand

United States government officials have expressed exasperation over why Taiwan's Legislative Yuan may revise the Food Sanitation Act Tuesday to ban imports of U.S. ground beef, offals or even beef in bone.

Senior officials of President Ma Ying-jeou's right-wing Chinese Nationalist Party (Kuomintang) government have publically speculated that U.S. President Barack Obama's Democratic Party administration will retaliate against Taiwan's alleged "unilateral abrogation" of the protocol signed Oct. 22 by Taiwan Economic and Culture Representative Office and American Institute in Taiwan to reopen imports of these risky US beef through delaying talks on a long-expected U.S.-Taiwan Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (TIFA) or even by further delays in defensive arms sales.


Taiwan must uphold sovereignty

President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) has made Taiwan’s allies uneasy with his China-friendly policies. Writing in the latest edition of the magazine Foreign Affairs, US academic Robert Gilley describes how, during the Cold War, Finland employed a policy of detente to curry favor with the Soviet Union, enabling it to retain its autonomy and avoid annexation by the USSR. Gilley notes that, since the Ma administration took office, Taiwan’s situation has come to resemble that of Finland. He goes on to suggest that the US should stop selling arms to Taiwan, and that it should let Taiwan become neutral and no longer count Taiwan among its Asian allies.


Taiwan faces a new year of political purgatory

Hopes were high in Taiwan when Barack Obama became President of the United States in January 2009. Obama had campaigned on the promise of change and that gave many in Taiwan hope for a way out from the "strategic ambiguity" imposed on the island by the United States in 1945.

When World War II ended with the Japanese surrender to the United States in August 1945, the U.S. allowed the Japanese to continue to rule the island territory commonly called Formosa. Then, in October, the Seventh Fleet of the U.S. Navy landed Chinese Nationalist troops of Chiang Kai-shek on the island to process Japanese soldiers thus beginning the longstanding ambiguity that prevents the island residents a representative to the World Health Organization, membership in the United Nations, or even participation in a recent climate change conference.


US business group accuses Obama of shorting Taiwan

WASHINGTON, Jan 1 (Reuters) - The head of a prominent U.S. business group accused President Barack Obama of compromising Taiwan's security to promote U.S. ties with China.

Self-ruled Taiwan, which China deems a wayward province, is watching "with increased exasperation," said Rupert Hammond-Chambers, president of the U.S.-Taiwan Business Council.

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People in Tokyo yesterday watch Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on a screen as he gives a statement marking the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II.
Photo: Reuters

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe yesterday expressed “utmost grief” for the suffering Japan inflicted in World War II and vowed that Japan would never again use force to settle international disputes, but he said that future generations of Japanese should not have to keep apologizing for the mistakes of the past.