What Does Ma Ying-jeou Mean That There Will Be No War?
Saturday October 25, by Jerome F. Keating Ph.D.
Taiwan did not respond in a filial manner to Zhang Mingqing's patronizing paternalism last week and so he went home to China teary-eyed, nevertheless he did go away with our quote of the week. Ma Ying-jeou however gave him a close race in that arena and came in second with his own brilliant statement. Ma boldly declared in the same week that there would be no war with China during his four year term as president. This strange quote left many in a quandary and wondering who on earth Ma was trying to talk to and what on earth was he trying to say.
If Ma was talking to Taiwan and to the world and if he was trying to say that he would not attack China during his four years as president, then that is a no-brainer. Given the size difference between Taiwan and China even the simplest idiot would feel secure in committing to such a statement. So was Ma trying to say something more than that he would not attack China and start a war?
Was Ma trying to say that he spoke for China in stating that there would be no war? This too seems senseless. How could Ma speak for China? China certainly does not jump at Ma's beck or command and I am sure they did not give him carte blanche to speak in their behalf as regards war.
So what was Little Boy Ma trying to say? Perhaps he was trying to say, I will not declare independence (something he already promised in his inauguration) and China had said it would attack if Taiwan made such a nefarious declaration and so therefore there will be no war. Ma may be reiterating that he will be a good little boy and will follow the scripting of China and the USA for what Taiwan should do in life, but unfortunately as for the logic of his reasoning it has more holes than Swiss cheese.
This is the problem of Little Boy Ma; he still lives in an imaginary Lah-Lah Land where he believes he only has to imagine and wish for something and it comes true. That might have worked under the dictatorship of the one-party state of the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) that Ma was raised in, but now Taiwan is a democracy and the world has moved on.
Such imaginings certainly didn't work when Little Boy Ma (like a one-trick pony) imagined that his running to China would infallibly solve all of Taiwan's economic problems. While Ma imagined this and that he would be declared hero, the economy tanked under him. Reality does bite and the Taiwanese that voted for Ma began to realize it. His popularity rating at last count plunged to 23.6 per cent.
Unfortunately for Taiwan, it will take a stronger bite of reality than that to deter Little Boy Ma for he has an amazing ability to retreat into Lah-Lah Land where the sycophants who surround him and the pan-blue press confirm his belief that he is a hero.
What next? Taiwan has already had its 3rd major protest demonstration against Ma and his presidency has not even reached its six month mark. Ironically, much foreign media still serves the role of useful idiots in telling Ma that his following the script of the USA and China is what his people want. But that is another story for another time.