Don't know where you were stationed but he was on the very 'front line' so to speak. And I really don't know that they phrased it as 'taking back the Mainland' but according to him they were waiting for the order to sail for the mainland (he said he was discussing with his friend what they should do if the order actually did come down....). Not sure why else you would be on high alert in Taiwan when there was a disturbance going on way over in Beijing. It's not like it was an opportune time for the mainland to invade Taiwan.Poagao wrote:TaipeiDawg wrote:Actually, a friend of my was doing his military service stationed on offshore islands during the Tiananmen incident. He said they went on high alert thinking the Mainland government might be going to collapse and the time would be right to 'take back the Mainland'. They had to always carry their weapons loaded - even slept with their weapons at their side just in case the order came down and they had to launch an offensive.... But obviously it never did.BAH wrote:3) Wait for the right moment. I think the last good chance was during Tienanmen, and perhaps to a lesser extent in 1996 with the US fleet in the Taiwan Strait.
We were on high alert in '96 as well. Don't recall any talk of retaking the mainland at the time, however.
Dog's_Breakfast wrote:I think you are correct that a big crisis in China presents the only real opportunity to declare independence. Also agree that the 1989 Tiananmen and 1996 missile crises were the two points in time when Taiwan might have made the move to independence, but could not muster the courage to go through with it. I'm not sure if/when those opportunities will present themselves again.
As to what China would actually do if Taiwan went ahead and made a declaration of independence, I don't think it would result in an immediate military invasion. China doesn't really want to take over a glowing pile of ashes. I think China's first response would be some sort economic embargo, perhaps followed by a military blockage of Taiwan's seaports if the newly-declared ROT government doesn't capitulate. Wealthy Taiwanese could be expected to panic, grabbing all the cash they can and heading for safe havens in Canada, the USA and Europe. Ditto for most of the vocal TI-supporting foreigners here on Forumosa, who would grab their money and head home, all the while telling the Taiwanese to "be brave" and "fight the good fight." Charles Hong, professional letter-writer for the Taipei Times, would (from his safe haven in Columbus, Ohio) be telling the Taiwanese to "never surrender."
Taiwan's economy would tank. Cutting off food imports would create a crisis. Plus without imports of coal, oil and natural gas, we'd soon be seeing an energy crisis as well. Hydro-electric could supply max 5% of Taiwan's needs, and nukes (if the new DPP government hasn't shut them down yet) about 20%, but with 75% currently running on fossil fuels, we'd have major blackouts. Transport fuel would be gone. Deprived of gasoline and diesel fuel, Taiwan's farmers would have a hard time getting domestically-raised food to market. The cities would starve. If that wasn't enough to force Taiwan to surrender, China could lob a missile into a city with very minor explosives - hit the World Trade Center or Taipei 101, and cause widespread panic even without any great loss of life. I can't imagine that the Taiwanese would hold up under this kind of pressure.
Would the USA come riding to the rescue? I sincerely doubt it. Many are assuming that China is getting ready to collapse any day now. I'm less convinced. Indeed, I think it's more likely that the USA will collapse first.
Hartzell wrote:Why don't you look at the historical and legal record? In particular, the situations of the Philippines and Cuba are very illustrative of THE ONLY METHOD whereby Taiwan can move in the direction of de-jure independence.
The following is a simplified scenario. Many of the details have been left out at this point.
Philippines, Cuba, and Taiwan: All were/are territories conquered by US military forces during wartime. Hence, the US has military jurisdiction. Such jurisdiction is conducted under military government. In the San Francisco Peace Treaty (SFPT) of 1952, the United States Military Government was given disposition rights over the Japanese property of Taiwan territory. That is Article 4(b), which is bolstered by the specification of the USA as "the principal occupying power" in Article 23(a).
Unlike the Article 3 territory of the Ryukyus, Taiwan was not later elevated to the status of UN trusteeship. Hence, according to the terms of the SFPT, Taiwan is still under military occupation. For all the technical details, and relevant treaty clauses, and why the military occupation of Taiwan cannot be interpreted to have ended yet . . . . . etc. See -- http://www.taiwanbasic.com/key/
Today, "Taiwan" is a geographic term, it is not the name of a country. Jurisdiction over Taiwan is held by the USMG as the principal occupying power, and Taiwan forms an "independent customs territory" under USMG. The ROC is also serving as "agent" for the USA in the continuing military occupation of Taiwan, while at the same time being a government in exile on Taiwanese soil. Taiwan does not belong to China. The "One China Policy" says that the PRC is the sole legitimate government of China. That is all that it says. Taiwan/ROC cannot enter the UN because it is not a country. (The various elements of fact and logic here are very well interconnected.)
With the above elements in mind, then you can turn to the situations of Philippines and Cuba. Having been conquered by US military forces, each one was under direct USMG jurisdiction for a period of time before convincing the US Executive Branch to grant it independence. Taiwan must follow a similar path. Taiwan must have a period of direct USMG jurisdiction before it can move in the path of independence.
Hence, the path is clear. It begins with demands that, under the Senate-ratified SFPT, the USA should handle the military occupation of Taiwan directly. The delegation of the administrative authority to the Chinese Nationalists should be ended.
Then of course the native Taiwanese people can come together to form their own civil government. A citizenship law needs to be promulgated. (This is exactly the way that the Philipines and Cuba proceeded.) Since the ROC government in exile is in Taiwan, there will have to be an interim period. US miitary troops will be needed to assure a peaceful transfer of power to "Taiwan citizens."
The following individuals are defined as Taiwan citizens:
* Upon the signing of the surrender documents by the Japanese Emperor on September 2, 1945, all people of Taiwan bearing household registration in Japanese-governed Taiwan and their descendants continuing to possess household registration in Taiwan up to the present are defined as Taiwan citizens, also called: (original) people of Taiwan.
* Any individual acquiring Taiwan citizenship under the other provisions of this Act.
* Descendants of the Taiwan citizens having household registration in the region of Taiwan as defined in the foregoing clauses 1 and 2 are defined as Taiwan citizens.
Upon reaching the age of eighteen, a Taiwan citizen is entitled to various citizenship rights such as voting in an election, impeachment, referendum, etc.
[ http://www.twdata.net/citizenship.htm ]
It may be five or ten years until some level of local stability is reached. Negotiations with US government officials for a timetable for "Taiwan independence" can only begin at that stage.
headhonchoII wrote:Much of this is well thought out. But the idea that the US , with it's solid and established functioning political and democratic system, will collapse before China with it's awesome mountain of corruption and inequality and remaining 100s of millions of people on the breadline is hardly worth responding to.
You are aligned with those locals who think that the China will rise to dominate the world while the west recedes back into the Dark Ages. You must be old enough to recall when Japan's economy was skyrocketing into prominence and everyone was scrambling to learn Japanese to ride the wave of the future. That was, of course, until the bubble burst and the exchange rate of the yen went crazy.Dog's_Breakfast wrote:headhonchoII wrote:Much of this is well thought out. But the idea that the US , with it's solid and established functioning political and democratic system, will collapse before China with it's awesome mountain of corruption and inequality and remaining 100s of millions of people on the breadline is hardly worth responding to.
Just because you don't like China (and I don't like it either) doesn't mean they aren't going to outlast the USA. Good guys don't always win. China has become, more or less, the world's factory, while the USA has lost most of its manufacturing, and now software has gone to India. Americans have a hard time accepting just how indebted USA has become (number 1 in the world). The state and local governments are going broke too. And how the country has become overwhelmingly corrupted by Wall Street banksters who have stolen more money (on paper) than actually exists in the world. You can get away with living off your former reputation for "financial innovation" for just so long before the cold-hearted reality of a Ponzi scheme rears its ugly head. And the history of Ponzi finance indicates that when it unravels, it happens very fast.
Keep your eye on the BRICS. If I were still a young guy, that's where I'd be staking my future. But now I'm old enough that I don't have to care. I feel sorry for all my younger friends and relatives back in America who think that when they get their college degree in Business Management, there will be a job waiting for them. Hope they know how to husk corn while trying to pay off the student loan.
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