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Cablegate: Media Reaction: U.S-Taiwan Relations

VZCZCXYZ0000
RR RUEHWEB

DE RUEHIN #0994 2290937
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 170937Z AUG 09
FM AIT TAIPEI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2126
INFO RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING 9339
RUEHHK/AMCONSUL HONG KONG 0772

UNCLAS AIT TAIPEI 000994

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EAP/TC, EAP/P, EAP/PD - THOMAS HAMM
DEPARTMENT PASS AIT/WASHINGTON

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR KPAO TW
SUBJECT: MEDIA REACTION: U.S-TAIWAN RELATIONS

Summary: From August 15-17, Taiwan's major Chinese-language
continued to give significant news and editorial coverage to the
damage caused by Typhoon Morakot and to the United States' decision
to send military aircraft to help Taiwan in the post-typhoon rescue
and relief efforts. Several major Chinese-language and
English-language papers front-paged the U.S. rescue operations in
Taiwan with banner headlines on August 17. In terms of editorials
and commentaries, an op-ed in the pro-independence "Liberty Times"
criticized the Ma administration's delay in accepting the U.S.
rescue assistance and said the delay was caused by the Ma
administration's decision to uphold the one China policy. End
summary.

"U.S. Military's Relief [Operations] for Taiwan Is Testing Ma"

Lai I-chung, Executive Committee member of the Taiwan Thinktank,
opined in the pro-independence "Liberty Times" [circulation: 70,000]
(8/17):

"... AIT and Japan's Interchange Association are the only two
foreign agencies that have set up offices in Kaohsiung, and they
immediately realized the serious [damage] caused by Typhoon Morakot.
Without the reports from these offices in Taiwan, the State
Department, which insists on the one China policy, would not have
overlooked the sensitive U.S.-China relations and expressed a
willingness to send the U.S. military to assist [Taiwan]. It is
impossible that Ma, who is incompetent in managing the affairs of
state but is very sensitive to the one China [policy], was unaware
of the military significance [of the move by the U.S. military].
Rumors had it that the National Security Council (NSC) had [earlier]
suggested that [Ma] decline U.S. assistance first and then seek
international assistance after China's Association for Relations
across the Taiwan Strait had made donations [to Taiwan]. It is
generally believed that the major reason [for doing so] was to
uphold the one China [policy] and to lay bare [the Ma
administration's] heart to Beijing. But [the problem is that the Ma
administration] has missed the most precious first seventy-two hours
[following the disaster], and numerous victims have either died or
been injured.

"Given Taiwan's continuously chaotic disaster rescue system, in
addition to [the concerns that the island's] original rescue
capacity might be consumed by coordinating the U.S. military's
rescue operations, the NSC, which was previously against the U.S.
military's rescue assistance because of its insistence on upholding
the one China [policy], will likely lose the trust [of both sides.]
Thus, the NSC will not be able to contribute to the high-level
communications between the two sides... As for [the NSC's role in]
the more complicated follow-on operations, the results are
unimaginable. New problems will ensue after the U.S. military is in
Taiwan."

WANG

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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