Taiwan Independence: Realistically, how?


#101

Well yeah if you ask them they’ll have to tell you the truth. But try pushing the subject. Talk more passionately about Taiwan Independence. You’ll find more mainlanders will just leave the subject than start an argument with you.

Most mainlanders and Taiwanese get it that Taiwan is just another province of China. 外省人 means out of province people and that’s what Taiwanese even the TI ones call culturally not Taiwanese residents.

Just want to leave on a high note. Nobody is asking Taiwan to be subservient to Beijing. That’s like asking Hong Kong or Shanghai to be subservient to Beijing. Not gonna happen. But Taiwan as any other province is still expected to follow the central government. Even Beijing has to follow the rules.


#102

Ever been to the mainland? Most people don’t care, especially the younger generation. This is an issue for the government not the people.[/quote]

Yes, I’ve been to Mainland more than 20 times over the last 20 years and almost everyone I meet who spoke about the subject insist Taiwan is part of China. These people ranged in age from 20s to 60s and almost none of them worked in government. I suppose the people you’ve met are just different from the ones I have.[/quote]

Insisting is not the same as actually caring about the issue. I can’t tell you how many Americans I know who insist they won’t put up with raised taxes (they do), or a Republican-Democrat in the White House (they do). The number who care is vanishingly small despite the rhetoric.

So yes, I concede that many/most Chinese will make noise about this (like they do about Japanese war crimes), but not that they care enough to push their government to war. But maybe I’m just better at seeing the bullshit in what people say than you are. :slight_smile:


#103

Based on the discussions I’ve had with Mainland Chinese, I totally disagree with the notion that they don’t care enough about unifying Taiwan and that its all just bluster/empty rhetoric. I suppose the people you’ve spoken to are just different from the ones i’ve spoken to.


#104

every time i have talked to a mainlander and said the word ‘taiwan’ without fail they say taiwan is part of china. even people that cared very little about politics believed strongly about it. some seemed to realise that its not actually a part of the CCP while one even told me that it was already working the same as hong kong, under a one country, 2 systems policy. the brain washing is deep, and thats exactly why its such an important issue to china. if taiwan was independent it would cause them to have their face destroyed, the peoples minds would implode as the curtain of generations of bullshit was lifted. so they cant let that happen, which is why they say they will use force if they have to… which wont ever happen anyway.


#105

Then there is the assertion that I’ve heard everywhere from Taiwan to Singapore that if Taiwan becomes independent then all the provinces of China will follow suit and try to declare independence. Personally, I think it’s pure bullshit and a cheap attempt to tie Taiwan independence to some kind of larger catastrophic domino effect. But somehow the highly efficient propaganda machine has got this notion spread far and wide.


#106

Based on the discussions I’ve had with Mainland Chinese, I totally disagree with the notion that they don’t care enough about unifying Taiwan and that its all just bluster/empty rhetoric. I suppose the people you’ve spoken to are just different from the ones I’ve spoken to.[/quote]

The issue is whether people in China would care if their government reversed policy. I don’t think they would. Nothing you have said argues against that point.

Chinese hardliners believe Mongolia is part of China. Ever her an ordinary person really argue that? If the gov changed its position on Taiwan the people would follow.


#107

I respectfully have to disagree a bit with that one MM. If the CCP reversed it’s policy on Taiwan, that is, unification as a major and unrelenting domestic priority, it would cause a tidal wave of a backlash that even the mighty CCP couldn’t contain. 90% of Chinese want to take Taiwan by force, and many complain about why China hasn’t already done it. The only thing standing in the way between this aggression and Taiwan is the Chinese government itself. It has to keep up the rhetoric though, after all, it’s what cultivated nationalistic belligerence to begin with. You’re not talking about dems and repubs or even civilized people. What would happen if you burnt a Bible in the streets of a US city? Some people might get upset, but probably not much in terms of rioting. What would happen if you burnt a Koran in the Middle East? You have to take into account the emotional composition of the society. China’s government would have to be very careful about how it back-stepped away from the Taiwan issue if it ever chose to and figure out how to decompress its citizens over time (something that would be difficult to pull off). Right now they’re scuba diving at 50m. Any sudden rush to the surface and we’re taking a major case of the bends


#108

The backlash is a gentle slap as far as I can see. We are now in the seventh decade since the split. The masses are hardly breaking down the doors of the people’s congress demanding action.

Consider how almost everyone you know over 40 in Taiwan grew up believing they were Chinese and had to take back the mainland. What percentage still feel that?

I’ve met lots and lots of Chinese and I don’t think they are stupider or more brainwashed than any other people. Taking Taiwan is not in their interests. Without propofanda it wouldn’t survive as an issue.


#109

Part of the problem with the old rhetoric of taking back the mainland is that most of Taiwan’s population didn’t give a rat’s ass about China. They would get taught to be Chinese at school then go home and listen to their grandparents speak Japanese and call the KMT dogs. The KMT was never as affective hard wiring mindless belligerence as the CCP. Did you really talk to lots and lots of Chinese about Taiwan? Did most of them say something like, “Ah Taiwan, who cares what they end up doing? I couldn’t care less if Taiwan goes independent.” If so, I find that hard to believe.


#110

I have met a few people who recognize that Taiwan is independent and will remain that way but the majority I meet simply say that they hope the situation can be resolved peacefully because no one wants war. I can count on a hand the number who express a crazy militancy.

Look, you meet enough Chinese and you know when they are talking normally and when they are giving pro forma locutions. I hiked a glacier with this engineer from Shanghai last summer and 99.99% of his talk was normal, with clear language about the problems of pollution and water safety. Then there came a point where he had to say the obligatory “of course people who are too poor to even afford to eat properly don’t care about pollution. So we have to develop first and then take care of these other problems later.” Which directly contracted everything he had been saying all day.

So when I hear Chinese go off about Taiwan I am more interested in watching their body language and other clues that they are just spouting propaganda.

That’s really it. What makes you think the hordes of Chinese want a bloody war over a tiny island? The Chinese know very well what that would bring: a rapid decline in their living quality. You really think they will fight to go backwards?


#111

[quote=“Mucha Man”]I have met a few people who recognize that Taiwan is independent and will remain that way but the majority I meet simply say that they hope the situation can be resolved peacefully because no one wants war. I can count on a hand the number who express a crazy militancy.
[/quote]

that basicly means, they hope taiwan will join the CCP without a fuss. try asking them if they care or not if taiwan is independent. i would be very surprised if anyone was ok with that. and if you want to prove if they are not brainwashed… try moving on to the subject of japan. even the intelligent and cool chinese people that i know still hate japanese.


#112

Chinese had no problem embracing the free market despite being “brainwashed” for decades. I contend they would simply let the Taiwan issue go if their government no longer made it an issue.

All I am hearing on this thread is Chinese are idiots who even when given a free choice would act against their interests. Does not compute.

And please remember I am talking about the CCP dropping it’s claim. Are you really suggesting in such a case the masses would try to stir up the issue on their own? If so why not now?


#113

Are you talking about the same Chinese that rioted against the Japanese in China several years ago because Japanese text books didn’t describe the rape of Nanking as horrifically as they wanted? I guess the government could just tell them to get a life and go home next time. Like you said, deep down they’re a pretty rational, levelheaded bunch


#114

Apples and oranges. There is a deep seated hatred and envy of the Japanese going back more than a century. It is fueled by government propaganda (nearly every city in Dongbei for example has an anti-war of aggression museum that paints Japan in the worst light it can) to say nothing of TV and movies which are largely nothing but war themed as those are considered safe from censorship. I remember not so many years ago trying to find something, anything to watch that wasn’t about China and Japan’s conflicts: nope, if it wasn’t a movie, it was a soap opera, or a documentary, or a commercial.

The propaganda against Taiwan is nowhere near that level since it is an entirely manufactured agenda. There is also the issue that Chinese want Taiwan back because they believe it is part of the family. They don’t want to destroy it.

More and more the Chinese are also becoming envious of the civil and political system developed in Taiwan. And wanting that for themselves they are unlikely to want to destroy it in the process. Remove the CCP unification propaganda, and you are not going to see riots.

Btw, if I remember correctly, the anti-Japan riots were quickly quelled when the government decided enough was enough. And when ever have the Chinese rioted over Taiwan?


#115

But the logic behind taking Taiwan into the fold goes back to the opium wars themselves. The emotion behind it is far beyond the political desire to bring to a conclusion the Chinese civil war. Taiwan is THE remaining symbol of Western Imperialism over China. China is nearly as butt hurt over that part of its history as it is the Japanese invasion. Taking Taiwan is necessary to prove to itself that China has regained its rightful position as the major world power, and that it has prevailed once and for all over foreign interference. They have been patient with their course of conquest up to this point, but when they taste the right opportunity they will jump on the chance with all 4s. This isn’t just about the whimsical foreign policy of governments, this is a powerful undercurrent of emotional responsiveness attached to a pervasive egotistical ideal of reality linked to their own ethnic identity


#116

Well, I find the notion that the Chinese, who in their current manifestation, are among the most avaricious, shallow, self-centered, and narrow-minded people in the world, have such deep deep feelings of historical hurt that can only be assuaged by conquering Taiwan to be twaddle.

Yeah it makes them feel good to boast and bluster and bitch but the average family would not give up a block of tofu to achieve unification.

Again, if this was such a pressing issue for the people where are the riots, where is the pressure on the gov to push for unification. During the last election mostly all we heard was Chinese wondering why they couldn’t have such a thing and why they have to bow down to the leaders when in Taiwan the leaders bow to the people.

It was hard enough to get the people interested in fighting the Japanese in the 30s. Farmers just wanted to be left alone and in Manchuria the business and social elite cooperated very closely with the Japanese when it was in their interests.

How extraodinarily hard would it be to get Chinese to fight for Taiwan when there is no threat?


#117

[quote=“Mucha Man”]Well, I find the notion that the Chinese, who in their current manifestation, are among the most avaricious, shallow, self-centered, and narrow-minded people in the world, have such deep deep feelings of historical hurt that can only be assuaged by conquering Taiwan to be twaddle.

Yeah it makes them feel good to boast and bluster and bitch but the average family would not give up a block of tofu to achieve unification.

Again, if this was such a pressing issue for the people where are the riots, where is the pressure on the gov to push for unification. During the last election mostly all we heard was Chinese wondering why they couldn’t have such a thing and why they have to bow down to the leaders when in Taiwan the leaders bow to the people.

It was hard enough to get the people interested in fighting the Japanese in the 30s. Farmers just wanted to be left alone and in Manchuria the business and social elite cooperated very closely with the Japanese when it was in their interests.

How extraodinarily hard would it be to get Chinese to fight for Taiwan when there is no threat?[/quote]

Your last post made your position easier to understand. Sure, most Chinese would not volunteer to join the army to fight Taiwan. Post 9-11 most Americans didn’t join the military either. But for the government to not respond militarily would have been political suicide, regardless of who was in office. Same thing applies in China. Dealing with Taiwan will be an issue for the government and its military (Yes, 9-11 was a direct attack and Taiwan doesn’t threaten China, but China’s pride would be under attack). Conceding to Taiwan remaining a separate sovereign state would be political suicide, even for a one party system of government. Taiwan’s status is directly linked to the future legitimacy of CCP rule


#118

because they called it “socialism with chinese characteristics”

[quote=“Mucha Man”]There is also the issue that Chinese want Taiwan back because they believe it is part of the family. They don’t want to destroy it.

More and more the Chinese are also becoming envious of the civil and political system developed in Taiwan. And wanting that for themselves they are unlikely to want to destroy it in the process. Remove the CCP unification propaganda, and you are not going to see riots. [/quote]

destroy it from the outside or the inside… and how is being part of that family a desirable thing to any one with half a brain? have you seen what they do to their own people in there? all you need to do is look at hong kong to find out what would happen after unification, it aint pretty. they are patient, they would wait generations if thats what it takes. in time they would plan to have hong kong, macao, taiwan all operating under the same system, whether its under the surface or not. it simply makes no sense and is too inconsistent and a loss of face for one place to be operating democraticly while the other is under totalitarian control. anyone who thinks unification is going to be a bed of roses patch up the long seperated family is simply naive and needs to learn more about how the ccp operates.

i never said mainland people would be rioting over the taiwan issue, but the (fake) belief that taiwan is already part of the mainland or the belief that they need to be re-unified instilled and unmovable in 99% of mainland chinese people. the issue is extremely important to the goverment, and resulted in some pretty powerful brainwashing.


#119

Then the CCP will simply need to declare a “Non-unification with the Motherland to Protect the Territorial Integrity Initiative” and all will be well.


#120

The CCP will certainly not act against its own perceived interests, which would include a long drawn out war with Taiwan. If unification ever happens, it will likely occur without a single shot fired.