Hillary Drops the Big One on China


Back in March, I presciently speculated about (and J. Michael Cole pined for) a Taiwanese political uprising that would combine domestic mass resistance to the KMT’s mainland-friendly policies with US institutional support a la Maidan and whip up a political froth that might result in the sidelining of the KMT, the acquisition of political momentum and even political power by a pro-US/pro-independence led by the KMT’s independence-friendly and mainland-averse rival, the Democratic People’s Party, and a gigantic black eye for the People’s Republic of China.

The first salvo occurred a couple days later, with the occupation of the ROC parliament by student demonstrators, the Sunflower Movement, opposed to a cross-strait trade and service pact negotiated between the government and the PRC.  At that time, the US government stayed on the sidelines and the semi-official US presence in Taiwan, the American Institute in Taiwan, reviled by many as an enabler of KMT-PRC rapprochement don’t rock the boatism, actually criticized the occupation.

Now it looks like Hillary Clinton has put Taiwan in play as a geopolitical counter in her ongoing confrontation with the People’s Republic of China, which characterized her term as Secretary of State and looks to define, for better or worse, her expected presidency.  I don’t believe that Secretary Clinton is just talking up the benefits of the Trans Pacific Partnership and Taiwan’s membership in a U.S.-led trade bloc.  She’s referring specifically to the advisability of putting a brake on development of cross-strait integration.

Expect the DPP and the Sunflower Movement to take Clinton’s statements as offering the prospect of US support, as well as encouragement to resist the KMT government’s cross-strait policies and challenge its legitimacy and effectiveness in a multitude of venues beyond the conventional electoral and parliamentary fora (where the DPP is currently trapped in impotent minority status thanks to the black magic of the democratic process).  Since the current government is pretty unpopular, there is ample mischief that can be achieved in the name of “national emergency”.  Ma Ying-jyeou = Yanukovich, PRC = Russia, KMT = Party of Regions etc.

And since the opposition to the KMT is firmly rooted in the discourse of Taiwan independence, there’s even a World War III vibe over Taiwan that was only fitfully present in the whole US + Maidan v. Russia confrontation.

I guess Clinton is doing Taiwan the favor of warning it to conduct its pro-US political ruckus sooner than later so that, unlike Ukraine, it doesn’t find itself torn in two by the struggle.

Peter Lee wrote a ground-breaking essay on the exposure of sailors on board the USS Reagan to radioactive fallout from Fukushima in the March issue of CounterPunch magazine. He edits China Matters.

Good luck with that!  I predict interesting times.

Peter Lee edits China Matters and writes about Asia for CounterPunch.  

November 30, 2015
Henry Giroux
Trump’s Embrace of Totalitarianism is America’s Dirty Little Secret
Omur Sahin Keyif
An Assassination in Turkey: the Killing of Tahir Elci
Uri Avnery
There is No Such Thing as International Terrorism
Robert Fisk
70,000 Kalashnikovs: Cameron’s “Moderate” Rebels
Jamie Davidson
Distortion, Revisionism & the Liberal Media
Patrick Cockburn
Nasty Surprises: the Problem With Bombing ISIS
Robert Hunziker
The Looming Transnational Battlefield
Ahmed Gaya
Breaking the Climate Mold: Fighting for the Planet and Justice
Matt Peppe
Alan Gross’s Improbable Tales on 60 Minutes
Norman Pollack
Israel and ISIS: Needed, a Thorough Accounting
Colin Todhunter
India – Procession of the Dead: Shopping Malls and Shit
Roger Annis
Canada’s New Climate-Denying National Government
Binoy Kampmark
Straining the Republic: France’s State of Emergency
Bill Blunden
Glenn Greenwald Stands by the Official Narrative
Jack Rasmus
Japan’s 5th Recession in 7 Years
Karen Lee Wald
Inside the Colombia Peace Deal
Geoff Dutton
War in Our Time
Charles R. Larson
Twofers for Carly Fiorina
John Dear
An Eye for an Eye Makes the Whole World Blind
Weekend Edition
November 27-29, 2015
Andrew Levine
The Real Trouble With Bernie
Gary Leupp
Ben Carson, Joseph in Egypt, and the Attack on Rational Thought
John Whitbeck
Who’s Afraid of ISIS?
Michael Brenner
Europe’s Crisis: Terror, Refugees and Impotence
Ramzy Baroud
Forget ISIS: Humanity is at Stake
Pepe Escobar
Will Chess, Not Battleship, Be the Game of the Future in Eurasia?
Vijay Prashad
Showdown on the Syrian Border
Dave Lindorff
Gen. John Campbell, Commander in Afghanistan and Serial Liar
Colin Todhunter
Class, War and David Cameron
Jean Bricmont
The Ideology of Humanitarian Imperialism
Dan Glazebrook
Deadliest Terror in the World: the West’s Latest Gift to Africa
Mark Hand
Escape From New York: the Emancipation of Activist Cecily McMillan
Karl Grossman
Our Solar Bonanza!
Mats Svensson
Madness in Hebron: Hashem Had No Enemies, Yet Hashem Was Hated
Walter Brasch
Terrorism on American Soil
Louisa Willcox
Grizzly Bears, Dreaming and the Frontier of Wonder
Michael Welton
Yahweh is Not Exactly Politically Correct
Joseph Natoli
A Politics of Stupid and How to Leave It Behind
John Cox
You Should Fear Racism and Xenophobia, Not Syrian Refugees or Muslims
Barrie Gilbert
Sacrificing the Grizzlies of Katmai Park: the Plan to Turn Brooks Camp Into a Theme
Rev. William Alberts
The Church of “Something Else” in “an Ecclesiastical Desert”
Andrew Gavin Marshall
Bank Crimes Pay
Elliot Murphy
Cameron’s Syrian Strategy
Thomas S. Harrington
Jeff Jacoby of the Boston Globe and the Death of Ezra Schwartz
Gareth Porter
How Terror in Paris Calls for Revising US Syria Policy
Michael Perino
The Arc of Instability