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Cablegate: Media Reaction: Joseph Wu's Appointment As New Tecro Chief

VZCZCXYZ0007
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHIN #0671 0820849
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 230849Z MAR 07
FM AIT TAIPEI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 4590
INFO RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 6512
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 7755

UNCLAS AIT TAIPEI 000671

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EAP/TC, EAP/PA, EAP/PD - LLOYD NEIGHBORS
DEPARTMENT PASS AIT/WASHINGTON

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR KPAO TW
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: JOSEPH WU'S APPOINTMENT AS NEW TECRO CHIEF


Summary: Almost all Taiwan's major Chinese-language dailies gave
front-page coverage March 23 to a Taiwan Go player who defeated his
Chinese opponent Thursday to become the new world champion. News
coverage also focused on the 2008 presidential elections and other
local issues. In terms of editorials and commentaries, a column in
the pro-unification "United Daily News" commented on the appointment
of incumbent Mainland Affairs Council Chairman Joseph Wu as the new
TECRO chief. The article said given Wu's strong professional
competence and President Chen Shui-bian's full trust in him, Wu will
be the most powerful ever TECRO chief. End summary.

"The Unprecedented, Most Powerful TECRO Chief"

Reporter Chang You-sheng noted in the "United Notes" column in the
pro-unification "United Daily News" [circulation: 400,000] (3/23):

"... Over the past few years, it has become the most important task
for the TECRO chief to seek to upgrade to the highest level the
treatment granted to Taiwan state leaders when transiting the United
States. In addition, as TECRO chief, he will have to play the role
of firefighter after the president gives unexpected and
controversial remarks. As a result, even though Cheng Chien-jen and
David Lee are both outstanding diplomats, they are destined never to
become the best choices. Two primary criteria may be used to assess
[the qualifications of] Taiwan's representatives or ambassadors to
the United States: their own professional knowledge and the extent
of trust they enjoy from the top authorities - namely, whether the
top authorities have full faith in them. Cheng and Lee may be
perfect in their professional competence, but they are, after all,
not among 'the king's men.'

"The newly appointed TECRO chief, Joseph Wu, is the nephew of
President A-Bian's key campaign contributor Wu Li-pei, so there is
no problem of insufficient trust. Wu admitted that he has no prior
experience of working overseas, but he said he has a complete
understanding of A-Bian's thoughts and can therefore easily
interpret Bian's ideas directly to the United States. Wu cited the
example of A-Bian's 'Four Wants and One Without' remark. He said
even though he had no idea of the remark in advance, he could grasp
and help clarify the key points and true intent of Chen's
announcement immediately after Bian delivered it, and he could
therefore point out that there was no clash between the 'Four Wants
and One Without' and the 'Four Nos and One Without' pledge Chen made
in 2000. Wu's 'professional competence' was thus quite evident.
Both Cheng and Lee, who were often in a sorry plight to probe in
front of the Americans the true meaning of A-Bian's remarks, should
really feel ashamed. Since Wu has A-Bian's full trust and is
professionally competent, let's wait and see how he does his job."


YOUNG

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