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Postby Hartzell » 30 Aug 2003, 12:12

RE: proposed lawsuit in US Federal District Court, Washington, D.C.
** denial of liberty and due process issues **

We are changing this idea around somewhat and proposing to sue the US Department of State. I had an interview with the China Times Express about this which was printed in their (evening) edition, p. 6, August 24, 2003.

I have more TV appearances and radio appearances coming up. Also, we are planning a press conference in the Taiwan University Alumni Club Building (Ji-Nan Road in Taipei, near Zhongshan S. Rd.) at 10:00 on Tues. Sept. 2nd.

The supporters of this idea are also talking of organizing a "Pan Silver Alliance" . . . . . so that may be another development worth noting. This is the third option, i.e. (3) Taiwan becomes a self-governing overseas territory under USA administrative authority.

The other two options are of course: (1) Taiwan becomes independent, (2) Taiwan unites with the PRC.
Richard W. Hartzell
contact me by email at rwh.midway@gmail.com
Neihu District, Taipei (114)
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Postby Anonymous » 31 Aug 2003, 06:41

I have some friends who work in the media. I will inform them of this and get their reaction . . . . . .

One way or the other, I think it is bound to get some press attention.
Anonymous
 



Postby LittleBuddhaTW » 02 Sep 2003, 00:10

Hartzell wrote:We are changing this idea around somewhat and proposing to sue the US Department of State. I had an interview with the China Times Express about this which was printed in their (evening) edition, p. 6, August 24, 2003.


On what grounds? That they are responsible for the denial of due process and civil rights to American citizens? If the claimants succeed, what remedy will you seek? Monetary, or force the U.S. government to put political pressure on Taiwan? I see no way that that U.S. will ever seek to make Taiwan an "overseas territory" ... the best that can be hoped for is some change in U.S. policy wherein they exert some real political pressure on Taiwan to quicken the pace on reforms (political, economic, judicial, human rights, etc.) Would this "pressure" really work, though? Probably not ... the U.S. has already put a lot of pressure on Taiwan over the violation of intellectual property rights issue, and to little avail. The problem is that with a lot of these issues, the authorities and majority of the population don't see that they're doing anything wrong ... it would take a massive education campaign and shift in social consciousness for that to happen ... very unlikely, IMO. And if pressure from the U.S. government on these issues is not what you are seeking, and really making Taiwan an overseas territory under U.S. authority is, then like those who are pushing for Taiwanese independence, the only outcome will be an unnecessary war with China. I don't think you'd get much support among the U.S. public to sacrifice thousands of American lives for such a cause.

Anyway, I'm all for the U.S. putting more political pressure on Taiwan, and even for pursuing the grievances of the foreign community through the U.S. federal court system (although I'd rather see the Taiwanese government sued as opposed to the U.S. State Department), but I don't think what you've proposed could ever be successful, and even if it was, would only lead to war and further tarnish the image of the United States as a hegemonist/imperialist power.
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Postby Anonymous » 02 Sep 2003, 19:07

LittleBuddhaTW wrote:And if . . . . making Taiwan an overseas territory under U.S. authority is {what you are seeking}, then like those who are pushing for Taiwanese independence, the only outcome will be an unnecessary war with China.


You seem to assume that Taiwan belongs to China.

When did that happen?

I think that Mr. Hartzell's point is that, historically speaking, Taiwan belongs to the USA . . . . . and that this is a fact which has been carefully covered up by the US State Dept. for over fifty years.
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Postby LittleBuddhaTW » 04 Sep 2003, 00:15

Quest wrote:You seem to assume that Taiwan belongs to China.

When did that happen?

I think that Mr. Hartzell's point is that, historically speaking, Taiwan belongs to the USA . . . . . and that this is a fact which has been carefully covered up by the US State Dept. for over fifty years.


No ... that was not my point. My point was that if Taiwan declares independence (whether or not Taiwan legally belongs to China, Japan, the US or whoever is a moot point here) the Chinese will invade. If the U.S. can somehow be convinced that they legally "own" Taiwan and should incorporate it as an overseas territory, I can't see the PRC sitting idly by and saying "duh, ok, go ahead." I happen to agree with Mr. Hartzell's legal theory, and many of my Taiwanese friends think it's a great idea, but I think getting his goal implemented is impractical (as we all know, just because something has a legal basis doesn't mean the reality and the legal precedent are going to match up). The U.S. (most likely) is the de jure "owner" (or whatever you want to call it) of Taiwan, but certainly not the de facto owner. Perhaps it's something like with co-habitation laws in some places ... if you live together for a certain period of time, whether or not you actually sign marriage papers, you're considered legally married .. but I don't see Taiwan being able to ask for a divorce or enter into a new marriage (with the U.S. as protector) without China getting really pissed off and beating the living hell out of it's "disobedient wife". Anyway .....
"Rude, vile pigs!" -- Elton John (screamed at the Taiwanese media in September 2004)
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Postby gazza » 04 Sep 2003, 02:35

I don't think this approach is going to get Mr Hartzell a Taiwan ID card (without the renouncing of the US citizenship). That is what it is all about anyway isn't it.

The US government doesn't have sovereignty over Taiwan in anyway shape or form - and thank god for that :D .
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Postby marky » 04 Sep 2003, 07:11

gazza wrote:The US government doesn't have sovereignty over Taiwan in anyway shape or form .......


I have to agree with gazza. I believe there is no way that you can state that there is any more to the relationship between Taiwan and the USA over and above the normal relations of two "sovereign states" ............

.........except for the fact that Taiwan is not recognized by the world community as a "sovereign state", and of course the Taiwan Relations Act is a domestic law of the United States, and of course the USA is the only country in the world with a Taiwan Relations Act, and of course Taiwan/Penghu is considered a "separate customs territory" which is a status derived from military occupation, and of course Nixon, Kissinger and the PRC dictated in the Shanghai Communique of 1972 that (subject to agreement between Chinese on both sides of the Taiwan Strait) Taiwan would become part of the PRC, thus putting Taiwan on a "flight path" for the eventual transfer of its sovereignty to the PRC, and of course the USA is a country founded on democratic principles but it disagrees with any plans for the Taiwanese to take a referendum to establish independent status ........ none of these facts can be used to indicate in any way, shape, or form that Taiwan's sovereignty is held by the USA.

Thank you so much gazza for your enlightened comments, which I have further clarified as per the above. I hope that the reading public will be able to learn more from your continued postings on this website, and it is with eager breath that we wait for further enlightenment ..........
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Postby Feiren » 04 Sep 2003, 10:52

LittleBuddhaTW wrote:No ... that was not my point. My point was that if Taiwan declares independence (whether or not Taiwan legally belongs to China, Japan, the US or whoever is a moot point here) the Chinese will invade.


Why do you assume that? If they failed, the CCP would lose power. Given their extreme aversion to risk, a chinese invasion of Taiwan is a very unlikely scenario. Try to avoid spreading FUD.
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Postby LittleBuddhaTW » 04 Sep 2003, 11:12

Feiren wrote:
LittleBuddhaTW wrote:No ... that was not my point. My point was that if Taiwan declares independence (whether or not Taiwan legally belongs to China, Japan, the US or whoever is a moot point here) the Chinese will invade.


Why do you assume that? If they failed, the CCP would lose power. Given their extreme aversion to risk, a Chinese invasion of Taiwan is a very unlikely scenario. Try to avoid spreading FUD.


Try to avoid accusing people of spreading "FUD" ... if the Taiwanese declared independence and China *didn't* invade, they would lose too much face, especially among their own people who they've been filling up with propaganda for the past 50 years about how Taiwan must be reunited with the motherland at all costs and how Taiwan will be flattened if they declare independence ... this could be as much of a risk to the CCP's hold on power as a failed invasion. Anyway, this has nothing to do with the original topic, so I'll stop here.
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Postby Cold Front » 04 Sep 2003, 11:44

What are the legal reasons this suit will be thrown out? I'm told by a lawyer that laches, waiver, and estoppel are all possible legal reasons this suit might lose in court.

Laches means, essentially, that you let your claim go too long, and it would be unjust to enforce it now. It's like a statute of limitations for situations where there is no actual statute.

Waiver means that you've acted in a way that indicates that you didn't dispute the wrong (for example, you applied for Taiwanese documents of some sort, rather than demanding a US documentation for the same purpose -- in other words, you did anything that acknowledged the facts as they are, rather than as you'd like them to be) and thus waived your rights.

And estoppel is like waiver, with the added twist that the alleged wrongdoer -- the U.S. State Department in this case I guess -- somehow relied on your acceptance of the facts as they are.

Again, I'm told by this lawyer that waiver and estoppel are a little shaky and fact dependent, but that a fifty-year old claim based on a technical flaw in procedure is absolutely going to be barred by laches.
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