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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

PRC uses religion to influence elections

China has been seeking to influence Taiwanese elections using its ties with local Matsu (媽祖) temples, academics said yesterday as they shared the results of their research published in Foreign Policy Analysis.

Liu Yu-hsi (劉裕皙), one of the authors of “In the Name of Mazu: The Use of Religion by China to Intervene in Taiwanese Elections,” said the international community has been increasingly aware of Russian and Chinese attempts to intervene in foreign elections through religion.

At a forum hosted by the Democratic Progressive Party, the associate professor at Shih Hsin University said that the Chinese Communist Party has sought to use its agents to influence small and medium-sized enterprises, those with low to middle incomes, and residents in central and southern Taiwan.

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The forced assimilation of Tibet

The situation in Tibet is complex and sensitive, with reports saying the Chinese government is attempting to assimilate Tibetan culture into the Han culture.

China’s approach to education in Tibet has raised significant concerns regarding the forced assimilation of Tibetan children. About 1 million have reportedly been separated from their families and placed into government-run boarding schools.

The educational content of the schools revolve around the Han culture, with Mandarin as the medium of instruction. The system is seen as a large-scale program intended to assimilate Tibetans into Han culture.

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Importance of Taiwanese identity

I once described independent Legislator May Chin (高金素梅) as a “well-paid spokesperson of dictator [Chinese President] Xi Jinping (習近平)” — a judgement some of my friends claimed to be arbitrary.

However, when it comes to character assessment, I follow Confucius’ (孔子) precepts: “Watch what they do and observe how they do it. How can they conceal their true self?”

During a questioning session in the Legislative Yuan, my suspicions were confirmed when Chin unabashedly referred to the Chinese president as “our Xi Jinping.”

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The consequences of war for China

From May 31 to June 2, 37 ministers of defense attended the 21st International Institute for Strategic Studies Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, including Chinese Minister of National Defense Dong Jun (董軍).

Anyone who tried to separate Taiwan from China would be “crushed to pieces,” he said during the premier defense summit.

In response to the threat, US Indo-Pacific Commander Admiral Samuel Paparo revealed the US military’s “Hellscape” strategy, with the aim of thwarting a potential Chinese invasion of Taiwan.

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Newsflash

The Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) yesterday decided to remove a controversial slogan — “Vote White, Vote Right” — from its Web site after the wording was criticized as being similar to that used by US white supremacist groups.

TPP spokeswoman Lin Tzu-yu (林子宇) told a news conference that the slogan had referred to the color white that the TPP brands itself with.

“It was supposed to mean that a vote for the ‘power of white’ is the right choice,” she said.