Happy Taiwan Retrocession Day!

Posted by: Bruce Einhorn on October 25, 2007

Today used to be a public holiday in Taiwan, marking the end of Japanese colonial rule in 1945 and the return of the island to China. Reunification with the mainland only lasted four years, of course, but for decades afterwards Taiwan Retrocession Day (it sounds better in Mandarin) was a public holiday with major symbolic importance, signifying the intention of the KMT government to reunite with the motherland once again. And while the Communists and the Nationalists disagreed about many things, they could at least find common ground in the glorious defeat of the Japanese.

Today, the KMT is no longer the rich and powerful ruling party but a bedraggled opposition, and Taiwan’s president, Chen Shui-bian, is from the DPP, which makes no secret of its desire for Taiwan to formalize its independence from the mainland. So no need to celebrate the anniversary of the Chinese government resuming control of Taiwan. I’m in Taipei and just got back from an interview at a big electronics company, because October 25 is now an ordinary workday.

Chen did decide to make this day special, though. This morning at the Presidential office building downtown he was at the front of a relay scheduled to travel around Taiwan, like the Olympic Torch relay that China is doing for the Beijing Olympics. Taiwan’s relay is to draw attention to its bid to enter the UN under the name of Taiwan. So Oct. 25 is still a day for symbolism. Just not the sort that will make the government in Beijing happy.

Reader Comments

YinduAsan

October 25, 2007 3:07 PM

The current president of Taiwan and DPP are really nothing but bunch of fools. They think they can get away with their sausage-cutting tricks to eventually get what they want. Mainland Chinese government is fully aware of the fact that, the US and Japanese governments are, under the table, insidiously encouraging these pawns to irk the mainland Chinese government. Be it known, there is no way China will ever let Taiwan province be an independent state even these fools have the backing of rest of world!

Which president or a party in the country that would hate to death of their own country's national anthem, national flag, national identity (name of the country), national history? Guess what, assuming Taiwan a country (Republic of China), it is President Chen and Taiwan's DPP party. These fools will bring nothing good to Taiwan, but bleeding and death. These fools willed themselves as pawns for those ill-intentioned (namely US and Japan) on China, China has no qualm to crush them into non-existent.

HC

October 28, 2007 9:55 PM

China will always be regarded by the West as a nation of second rate sub-human species until it takes back Taiwan. All the talk about the China threat is quite ridiculous considering the US has more warships and military aircrafts right at China's doorstep than anywhere else, and pledges military intervension by law in a territory that it officially recognizes as part of China. It's as if China sends half of its navy to waters just outside New York and Washington DC while accusing the US of unfriendly intentions for its military build-up. China a threat? a rising superpower? yeah right!

chenleilili

October 29, 2007 4:05 AM

Taiwai is an important bargaining power always used by U.S. against mainland of China.The formalization of Taiwan's independence from the mainland will result in the big loss of vested interest of U.S..Is it acceptable for U.S. to tolerate Chen Shui-bian's activities at the expense of it's own interests?

ROC

October 30, 2007 3:36 PM

Chen & DDP are just making a silly, desperate last-ditch attempt to save Taiwan from complete irrelevance. Who in the world cares about Taiwan, a little rock island?? The genius of the old KMT regime that landed in '49 brought education, currency reform, land reform and a host of brilliant policies, including export-led econ dev'ment. They provided TW w/ 40 yrs of peace and prosperity. Today's Taiwan is pathetic. Chen etal haven't figured out that you can't divorce economics from politics. If you can't survive economically w/o the Mainland, then what does it mean to be politically independent? TW is a sorry example of why democracy is NOT always the best system for every society at every stage of development.

ps

November 5, 2007 1:00 PM

Does YinduAsan belong to the politburo? I see sabre rattling has now entered the blogosphere with threats of blood to boot. Written like a true totalitarian propagandist. Well done. I guess big brother in Beijing is pleased.

Eric

November 8, 2007 6:52 PM

Rather depressing that most of the comments on this article seem to have been written by Mainland Chinese. And a rather sorry, uneducated lot at that, but the insecure are always the most vocal.

It's saddening to see that even with access to quality information, these supposedly educated people still toe the line fed to them since childhood by the party rather than thinking for themselves.

YinduAsan: Please improve your language skills and try to make legible, intelligent comments. At the moment you seem to be an unarticulated clod, spitting out tired, memorized lines.

HC: An inferiority complex and sense of victim's entitlement is the cause of this nonexistent view of China as subhuman. No rational person thinks this way, and it is more fuel to be used by the party to stoke the fires of nationalism. Remember Germany and Japan? Playing with fire is dangerous.

ROC: Who cares about the irrelevant, little rock Taiwan, the largest investor in China, and world's second-largest producer of semiconductors. Yes, the KMT brought so many great things to Taiwan, like dictatorship, brutal repression, and a kleptomaniac elite--what a lovely legacy. I hope you're not living in a democratic country, especially Taiwan. If totalitarianism is so great, then by all means, please go home immediately.

May

November 9, 2007 12:24 PM

Taiwan should reunite with Mainland China.

Post a comment

 

About

Bloomberg Businessweek’s team of Asia reporters brings you the latest insights on business, politics, technology and culture from some of the world’s biggest and fastest-growing economies.

BW Mall - Sponsored Links

Buy a link now!