China Times Editorial (Taipei, Taiwan, ROC)
February 24, 2016
Executive Summary: Tsai Ing-wen cannot remain silent. Otherwise she will be inexorably painted into a corner, and lose all room for maneuver. Tsai is about to become president. She must abide by the Constitution. She made a commitment to the people. The Constitution explicitly stipulates that the two sides of the Taiwan Strait are the "Republic of China's Taiwan Area, and the Mainland Area". Lee Teng-hui's rhetoric is unconstitutional. President elect Tsai must nail Lee to the wall using a second nail.
Full Text Below:
Lee Teng-hui's newly published "The Remainder of My Life" has stirred the pot. Strictly speaking, this book is hardly new. It was published in Japan in 2014. The current edition is merely a translation. The book has been widely criticized for alleging that "Diaoyutai belongs to Japan", and for advocating Lee's two states theory. It sings a tired tune. But the tired tune has caused an uproar because Lee Teng-hui is demanding that Tsai Ing-wen implement his agenda.
Lee Teng-hui claimed that "The Diaoyutai Islands belong to Japan". Tsai Ing-wen knew she could not equivocate on this issue. She had no choice but to make herself crystal clear, so she immediately replied "Diaoyutai belongs to Taiwan". She nailed Lee Teng-hui on this historical fact. Other DPP politicians whom Lee named spoke even more plainly and more caustically.
For example, former premier Yu Hsi-kung said that the Diaoyutai Islands were part of Touchen Township, Yilan County. Lee blasted Yu, saying "Nothing is more foolish than this." Yu Hsi-kun clarified his position. He said the Diaoyutai Islands were incorporated into Ilan County in 1973, not during his term as premier. In addition to pointing out Lee's error, Yu sarcastically noted, "I knew long ago that the Diaoyutai Islands were Republic of China territory, because Mr. Lee Teng-hui said so." Yu pointed out Lee's previous, self-contradictory position.
Tsai Ing-wen and the DPP were not the only ones nailing Lee Teng-hui to the wall. Many fishermen did so as well. Lee Teng-hui seems to have forgotten something. Unless we affirm sovereignty over the Diaoyutai Islands, we have no legal basis to assert fishing rights within Diaoyutai Island waters. This is why fishermen from Suao denounced Lee Teng-hui as a "lackey of Japan". Lee Teng-hui forfeited sovereignty and humiliated the nation over the Diaoyutai Islands issue. If our fishing rights are not upheld, it directly impacts those who make a hard-scrabble living on the sea. How can they not be outraged?
Lee Teng-hui even nailed himself in his own book, "The Remainder of My Life". Lee praised the Ma government for signing the Taiwan-Japan Fisheries Agreement with Japan in 2013. He said, "This, for me as someone who has long looked forward to an early agreement between Taiwan fishermen and Japan, is a truly happy event, a truly historic feat well worth celebrating." But if Ma Ying-jeou had parroted Lee Teng-hui, and argued that the Diaoyutai Islands belong to Japan, what grounds would Taiwan have to negotiate fishing rights with Japan? Japan would never have agreed to this “historic” Taiwan-Japan Fisheries Agreement.
But when the issue is the two states theory, Tsai Ing-wen finds herself in an embarrassing dilemma. During her presidential campaign, she swore to the people, the international community, and the Mainland, that she would abide by the existing constitutional framework. Cross-Strait relations under the existing constitutional framework are explicitly defined as relations between the "Taiwan Area and the Mainland Area", not relations between independent nations. Tsai Ing-wen knows full well that it is one thing to shout “one nation on each side” when one is the opposition party. But if one continues to shout “two states” when one is the ruing party, then “the ground will move and the mountains will shake”. The consequences will be serious indeed. The two states theory approach is infeasible, impossible, and amounts to political and economic suicide. This is why the DPP, which shrilly championed the two states theory during the Sunflower Student Movement, has no choice but to make a complete about face once it assumes power. Political reality and Taiwan's larger interests allow no room for the two states theory. The DPP is pragmatic. Officials on the Mainland do not consider this sufficient to establish mutual trust. But they also consider it a positive sign.
Just as the DPP was preparing to turn the ship around, Lee Teng-hui chose to make waves with his two states theory. In "The Remainder of My Life" Lee claims that "Taiwan has already developed a " Taiwan/Republic of China consciousness". Lee claims that the Republic of China is the Second Republic, and is a separate nation from the People's Republic of China. Lee Teng-hui said he looks forward to a future constitutional amendment, and the full realization of “one nation on each side”.
Tsai Ing-wen's cross-strait policy has long been purposely ambiguous. When faced with this part of “The Rest of My Life” she does not respond the way she did to "Diaoyutai belongs to Japan". When the media demands her response to Lee's characterization of cross-Strait relations as "relations between two nations", she hems and haws.
For one thing, Tsai Ing-wen was the author of Lee Teng-hui's Two States Theory. For another, what she calls the "existing Republic of China constitutional framework" includes future constitutional amendments, and may well be consistent with Lee Teng-hui's rhetoric. This makes it difficult for Tsai Ing-wen to speak plainly.
Political reality requires Tsai Ing-wen to lead the DPP in forsaking the two states version of the Cross-Strait Agreement Oversight Regulations. Otherwise exchanges between the two sides cannot be maintained. For Tsai Ing-wen, forsaking the two states version involves considerable political risk. From one side she must face the wrath of Taiwan independence elements. From the other side, she must face the blue camp and the Mainland, neither of which trust her. At this point her best strategy is “ambiguity, ambiguity, and more ambiguity”. But Lee Teng-hui is once again hammering home “state to state relations”. He is clearing up the ambiguity, and reducing the room for ambiguity.
Tsai Ing-wen cannot remain silent. Otherwise she will be inexorably painted into a corner, and lose all room for maneuver. Tsai is about to become president. She must abide by the Constitution. She made a commitment to the people. The Constitution explicitly stipulates that the two sides of the Taiwan Strait are the "Republic of China's Taiwan Area, and the Mainland Area". Lee Teng-hui's rhetoric is unconstitutional. President elect Tsai must nail Lee to the wall using a second nail.
2014年就已經在日本出版，現在只是翻譯後上架， 書中被各界廣泛批評的「釣魚台屬於日本」與「兩國論」， 更是老調重彈。老調卻引起騷動， 因為李登輝擺明要對蔡英文下指導棋。
必須明確打臉，因而立刻清楚回應「釣魚台是屬於台灣的」， 給李登輝釘下一根歷史的鐵釘。 幾個被李登輝點名的民進黨政治人物把話得更明、更嗆。
再也沒有比這更愚蠢的事」。游錫堃澄清，釣魚台隸屬宜蘭頭城，是 1973年辦理，而非在他行政院長任內。 除指出李登輝所述有誤外，更嘲諷的回應道：「我最早知道『 釣魚台是中華民國領土』是聽李登輝先生說的」， 挑明反批李登輝的昨是今非。
李登輝似乎忘了，沒有對釣魚台主權的堅持， 就沒有捍衛釣魚台漁權的法理基礎。 這是為什麼蘇澳漁民痛批李登輝是「日本走狗」的原因，因為， 如果李登輝對於釣魚台「喪權辱國」的主張成立，則漁權也將不保， 直接衝擊的就是在海濤上辛苦搏生的討海人，他們能不氣憤嗎？
李登輝盛讚馬政府在2013年與日本簽成的《台日漁業協議》， 他說：「這對一心期盼能為台灣漁民早日簽訂協議的我來說， 真是可喜可賀之事，真可謂讓人大聲稱快的歷史性壯舉。」 但如果馬英九和李登輝一樣主張釣魚台是日本的， 台灣還有什麼資格與立場去和日本談判漁權，《台日漁業協議》 這項「歷史性壯舉」根本不會有實現之日。
競選期間她已經對國人、國際社會及中國大陸做出承諾， 要堅持現行憲政體制。憲政體制下的兩岸關係是「 台灣地區與大陸地區」，並非國與國關係。何況蔡英文深知， 在野時喊喊一邊一國就罷了，如果執政時還繼續搞兩國， 必然招來地動山搖的嚴重後果，不僅不可行、不可能， 更是政治自毀、經濟自毀的愚行。這也是為什麼， 民進黨在太陽花學運時高舉兩國論，喊得如雷震天， 贏得政權後就必須轉彎。在政治現實與台灣利益大局考量下， 沒有不放棄兩個國家的空間。民進黨的務實， 大陸相關人士雖認為仍不足以建立互信， 但也認為是一個正面的訊號。
餘生》一書說法，「台灣已發展出『台灣中華民國』意識」， 中華民國現狀是第二共和，和中華人民共和國應該是兩個國家。 李登輝並期盼未來能夠修憲，徹底實現兩岸「一邊一國」目標。
就不像在面對「釣魚台是日本的」說法時一樣強力回擊， 媒體緊迫盯人要求她回應李登輝「兩國關係」論述時， 一概顧左右而言它。
少了反駁的正當性，二方面，她所謂「現行中華民國憲政體制」 已含有未來可以修憲之意，可能與李登輝的論述若合符節， 蔡英文難以回應。
兩國版本，才能讓兩岸交流互動關係繼續維繫。 放棄兩國版本對蔡英文是極大的政治風險， 一方面必須面對獨派的壓力，另一方面藍營，尤其大陸未必信任。 此時最佳策略就是模糊、模糊、再模糊，李登輝卻再度提出兩岸「 國與國關係」論述，把模糊變清晰，壓縮各自表述的可能空間。
失去迴旋空間。她即將成為總統，遵憲是職務使命與對國人的承諾， 《憲法》定位兩岸是「中華民國台灣地區與大陸地區」關係， 李登輝的論述已經違憲， 蔡準總統就必須給他釘下第二根歷史的鐵釘。