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Taiwan Tati Cultural and Educational Foundation

Hard to tell friends from enemies

News that a close relative of a senior military intelligence official is living in a hostile country would be enough to set alarm bells ringing in most countries. Such a revelation would probably lead to the official in question being forced to recall his relative or being disciplined in some way.

Not so in Taiwan.


Lee’s gesture puts spotlight on Ma

South Korean President Lee Myung-bak’s latest gesture, which keeps one of his campaign promises, puts President Ma Ying-jeou in a bad light.

On Monday, Lee announced that he would donate 33.1 billion won (US$26 million) — more than 80 percent of his total personal wealth — to a scholarship foundation to help “those who really need it.” Prior to this latest donation, in March last year — a month after taking office — Lee donated the entire salary for his five-year presidency to help low-income households amid the global economic downturn.


Xinjiang and Taiwan’s silence

The Chinese government has its admirers for being able to temper diplomatic difficulties by spreading money through the region and integrating its economic structure with the US and other major economies.

But when it comes to managing regions dominated — now or in the past — in population terms by non-Han peoples, China remains in a political Stone Age in which brutality, torture, terror, unchallenged propaganda, racism, colonialism and media blackouts are essential tools of governance.


Ma and Beijing’s agenda

A Beijing-initiated rumor made its rounds last year regarding an aborted military plan to invade Taiwan in case the Democratic Progressive Party’s (DPP) presidential candidate prevailed.

The fact that the innuendo was made public after — not before — the election, showed Beijing’s lack of confidence in its effect on Taiwanese voters.


Is Ma Ying-jeou Becoming the Kiss of Death?

The latest word and joke about Taipei is that Ma Ying-jeou is fast becoming the kiss of death to anyone that has anything to do with him. What started this rumor? Well first Ma shook the hand of Yankee's pitcher Wang Chien-ming. Wang had previously been a 19 game winner in several seasons but after shaking hands with Ma, Wang is struggling. He has won only one game this year. Then there is Hilary Clinton; Ma shook her hand and she shortly afterwards fell and broke her arm. Next, Ma was scheduled to meet Managua Mayor Arguello, but he went out and committed suicide. Also on Ma's list for meetings was President Manuel Zelaya of Honduras. Ma had met him in the past and was scheduled for a two day visit on Ma's current trip to Latin America. But before Ma arrived a military coup was staged in Honduras and Zelaya had to flee.


Yonaguni plans raise questions of Taiwan

Recent news reports said the US and Japan are planning to station military on Yonaguni Island in response to demands from local residents following China’s military expansion. A closer analysis, however, shows that it is more likely that such a military deployment would be the result of US and Japanese questions about the future strategic direction of Taiwan. In other words, the move is aimed at Taiwan rather than China.

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Students and demonstrators against the controversial cross-strait service trade agreement last night break into the compound of the Legislative Yuan and occupy the podium on the legislative floor.
Photo: Chang Chia-ming, Taipei Times.

Opposition parties and civic groups are working together on a full-scale protest that includes legislative boycotts, a “siege” of the legislature and street rallies after the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) cut short the review of the cross-strait service trade agreement on Monday and sent the pact directly to the plenary session for its second reading.

At about 9pm, more than 300 students and demonstrators broke from the rally outside the Legislative Yuan, broke into the compound and took over the podium on the legislative floor.