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Cablegate: Media Reaction: Campaign to Oust President Chen Shui-Bian

VZCZCXYZ0013
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHIN #3274 2642159
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 212159Z SEP 06
FM AIT TAIPEI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2253
INFO RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 5684
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 6903

UNCLAS AIT TAIPEI 003274

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EAP/TC, EAP/PA, EAP/PD - DAVID FIRESTEIN
DEPARTMENT PASS AIT/WASHINGTON

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A


TAGS: OPRC KMDR KPAO TW
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: CAMPAIGN TO OUST PRESIDENT CHEN SHUI-BIAN


1. Summary: Taiwan major Chinese-language dailies continued to
focus their coverage September 21 on former DPP Chairman Shih
Ming-teh's campaign to oust President Chen Shui-bian; on the violent
clashes that erupted between the pro-Chen and anti-Chen protesters
in southern Taiwan Wednesday; and on an attempted military coup in
Thailand. Most papers also started to discuss possible resolutions
that may help to bring an end to the current political stand-off in
Taiwan. The pro-unification "United Daily News," on the other hand,
ran an exclusive news story on page four with the headline "Amid the
Voices Calling to Oust Bian, DPP Drafts Constitutional Reform
Proposal on Taiwan Independence."

2. In terms of editorials and commentaries, an editorial in the
pro-independence "Liberty Times," Taiwan's largest circulating
daily, called for an end to the mass movements, as they are now
getting out of control. A "United Daily News" editorial, on the
other hand, lashed out at the DPP and President Chen for having
taught and cultivated a group of mobs and turned Taiwan into an
"inhuman" society. End summary.

A) "Masses Are Losing Control; Why Not Stop [the Movements] at the
Right Moment?"

The pro-independence "Liberty Times" [circulation: 600,000]
editorialized (9/21):

"... What is more worrisome is that demonstrations in a democratic
country are by no means a zero-sum game or a battle to the bitter
end. That is why mass movements need to have an exit plan, by which
the differences between both sides can be resolved through
negotiations, and thus achieve a win-win result. But the leader of
the 'Oust Bian' movement, in an attempt to underscore his heroically
tragic moral character and to create his personal heroic image, has
announced repeatedly that unless President Chen steps down, his
demonstrations will have no exit plan. Frankly speaking, Taiwan is
a diversified democratic society, and each political idea only
represents the views of a certain group of people, not all the
Taiwan people. Politicians therefore must not impose their personal
political stances on all the people using the excuse that they
represent public opinion. The true course of public opinion will
not be clearly manifested except via regular elections and the
number of votes. ..."

B) "Who is Pushing Taiwan toward an 'Inhuman' Society?"

The pro-unification "United Daily News" [circulation: 400,000]
editorialized (9/21):

"There is one more reason why Chen Shui-bian should step down: He
is a president supported by mobs. The DPP government should resign,
too, because it has cultivated those mobs over a long period of
time. ... One cannot just look at the surface of these riotous
scenes. The really horrible story behind it is, what political
teaching materials and political identity has the DPP been using
over a long period of time to teach its supporters? To put it
another way, what are the political values and political identity of
those people who constitute the stalwart supports of the DPP? These
people were chanting 'the Chinese people are trampling on the
Taiwanese people' onstage, while their audience below the stage was,
without a doubt, waving slogans saying 'Kill those pigs to protect
Taiwan.' ...

"In order to survive, the DPP has fully demonstrated to society how
much support it can get from its followers. ... But if judged from
another perspective, Chen should step down, because he is a
president supported by mobs. The DPP should step down, too, because
it has polluted the souls of the Taiwan people, teaching and turning
innocent people into mobs and transforming Taiwan into an 'inhuman
society' which 'does not regard human beings as human beings.' ..."


YOUNG

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