165. Abolition of the "National Unification Council" —— Japan should clearly support Taiwan's decision!! (March 3, 2006)

Copyright (Mar.3,2006) by TAKESHITA Yoshirō
Reissued as an English Edition (Oct.27,2006) by IWAYA Bunta


On February 27, 2006, President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁) of Taiwan made a decision that the National Unification Council (國家統一委員會)[1] – an advisory body of the Taiwanese government – will "cease to function," and the Guidelines for National Unification (國家統一綱領)[2] – approved during the time of the former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝) – will "cease to apply." The decision was immediately announced on the same day.[3]

Guidelines for National Unification:
Taiwan President announced its virtual abolishment which may cause China's repulsion

February 27, 2006 JST 10:57PM
by SHOJI Tetsuya
Mainichi Shimbun (Japan)

TAIPEI — On Monday, Taiwan's President Chen Shui-bian announced to practically abolish the National Unification Council and the Guidelines for National Unification for the gradual unification with mainland China. China had issued warnings over the past months against the recent movement of Taiwan. It is supposed to cause China's strong reaction.

The Unification Council is a governmental body tasked with setting the policy to promote unification with the mainland China. The council was set up in 1990 by then-president Lee Teng-hui. The guidelines were adopted by the Council in the following year as the blue print for the government's cross-strait policy that have a three step process (short-, mid- and long-term goals) for the gradual unification of mainland China and Taiwan.

President Chen announced a policy known as the "Four no's and one without" pledge (四不一沒有)[4] in his first inaugural speech on May 20, 2000[5] and promised "there is no question of abolishing the Guidelines for National Unification and the National Unification Council."

In his lunar new year speech on January 29, 2006, he instructed to formally begin debating on permanently abolishing the Unification Council and the guidelines. Chen said that the council is "existing only in name" and the guidelines "even accept the 'one China' principle. These are all problems."[*1]

State Department spokesman J. Adam Ereli said on January 30 that Washington "opposes any unilateral change to the status quo by either side."

Under the pressure from the United States, Chen Shui-bian had to carefully choose the word "cease to function" instead of "abolish."

(originally written in Japanese)

After this news, another report came that says a councilor at the Chinese Embassy in Japan demanded the Japanese government, "We need Japan to declare an opposition to Taiwan."

"Japan should oppose clearly"
Chinese Embassy warns Taiwan abolishing of the "National Unification Council"

March 2, 2006 JST 7:08PM
Asahi Shimbun (Japan)

Xiong Bo (熊波), councilor at the Chinese Embassy in Tokyo strongly opposed Taiwan's president Chen Shui-bian's decision to actually abolish the National Unification Council and the Guidelines for National Unification. "It accelerates the push for Taiwan independence," Mr. Xiong commented. "We demand the Japanese government to clearly oppose this jeopardizing action of Taiwan's leader," he said in a press interview on March 2 to news media in Tokyo.

Mr. Xiong blamed Taiwan's recent action that obstructs increasing exchanges between China and Taiwan and makes the relationship strained.

(originally written in Japanese)

By the way, Ban Ki-moon (潘基文),[6] South Korea's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade made a decision on February 14, 2006 to stand as a candidate for UN Secretary-General to succeed Kofi Annan. For the position, South Korea asked Japan to support Mr. Ban among other candidates. An executive officer of Japan's Minister of Foreign Affairs rejected flatly with saying:

"It is difficult to be asked for a support only at your convenience."

This is a diplomatic way to indirectly reject but he meant to say:

"You are impudent! How come can you say that?"

It's a proper answer to South Korea's attitude against Japan for the past decades.[#1] For example, at the 87th anniversary commemoration ceremony of the Sam'il Movement [March First Movement] (三・一運動)[7] in Seoul on March 1, 2006, President No Mu-hyeon (Roh Moo-hyun 盧武鉉) made a request for Japan's constitutional amendment... This is absolutely an intervention in the internal affairs of Japan.

Let's go back to talk about Taiwan. This time, China demanded Japan to oppose the decision of President Chen — "We demand the Japanese government to clearly oppose this jeopardizing action of Taiwan's leader." However, Japan should "reject flatly" since it is absolutely an intervention in the internal affairs.

China has raised a lot of "troubles" against Japan such as the "Yasukuni Shrine visits" and the "correct understanding of the history" (essentially, these "troubles" are totally unilateral), and moreover, gas field exploitation in the East China Sea, a proclamation to discredit Japan's sovereignty over Okinotori Island (沖ノ鳥島), and intrusions into Japan's Aerial Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) by Chinese military planes, etc. China is still refusing top summit meetings because of its unilaterally trumped-up "troubles." This self-centered country is still saying, "We demand the Japanese government to clearly oppose this jeopardizing action of Taiwan's leader." Isn't it funny that such a country is demanding Japan to oppose Taiwan?[#1] It is difficult to be asked only at China's convenience... This must be therefore answered,

"You are impudent! How come can you say that?"

Indeed, the level of China's logic is the same as South Korea's. Japan should fully support President Chen to show our unyielding stand in return for China's insolent behavior.

If necessary, we have to take a strong attitude without hesitation. It is just a diplomatic tactics that is "war without weapons" to protect our national interests. This is a good chance for the Department of Foreign Affairs led by the Minister A Tarô (麻生太郎) and the government to show us their diplomatic skills.

Incidental Remarks

The date "February 27" sounds indeed meaningful — President Chen, who is member of Taiwan's current ruling party Minchin-tang [Democratic Progressive Party] (民主進歩黨),[8] decided to abolish the Unification Council and guidelines that was announced on the same day. The Kuomin-tang [Chinese Nationalist Party, KMT] (國民黨)[9] is currently an opposition party that ruled Taiwan for over a half century through four presidential generations from Chiang Kai-shek (蔣介石) to the former president Lee Teng-hui (李登輝). There was an incident that the KMT and its body Waisheng-jen [Chinese mainlander immigrants] (外省人)[10] really want to erase from the history, the "228 Incident" (228 Massacre) (二二八事件)[11] that began on February 28, 1947.

Pensheng-jen [Original Taiwanese] (本省人) were brutally repressed by the KMT government, resulting in, according to some reports, thirty-thousand civilians killed. Chen Shui-bian, as a Pensheng-ren, from the Democratic Progressive Party, and currently the President of Taiwan, perhaps intentionally chose "February 27," a day before the "228 Incident." It gives an impression that it is his sarcasm to the Kuomintang who killed the 30,000 Taiwanese civilians. Julius Caesar in Rome left his name in the "history" by crossing the Rubicon. President Chen's "crossing the Rubicon" (de-China) will be, perhaps, looked back in the future as the commencement of Taiwan's "true independence."


For example, in the preceding year South Korea asked Japan to support Ban Ki-moon's candidacy, Japan has met with strong opposition from South Korea and China to become a permanent member of the UN Security Council.

Reference for English translation

"Taiwan Premier Mum on Chen's Lunar New Year's Day Remarks". Taiwan Headlines (February 1, 2006).

Terms and Related information (Links)

  1. National Unification Council (國家統一委員會). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  2. The original text of the Guidelines for National Unification (國家統一要領). Mainland Affairs Council, Republic of China.

  3. President Chen's Concluding Remarks at National Security Conference. Office of the President, Republic of China (Feb. 27, 2006).

  4. Four Noes and One Without (四不一沒有). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  5. "President Chen Shui-bian's inauguration speech". Government Information Office, Republic of China.

  6. Ban Ki-moon (潘基文), Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, Republic of Korea.

  7. March 1st Movement (三・一運動), March 1, 1919. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  8. Minchin-tang [Democratic Progressive Party, DPP] (民主進歩黨) (Pinyin: Minjindang). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  9. Kuomin-tang [Chinese National Party, KM] (國民黨) (Pinyin: Guomin-dang). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  10. Waisheng-jen [Chinese mainlander] [Waishengren] (外省人) (Chinese mainlanders who emigrated from Mainland China in 1949 near the end of the Chinese Civil War including KMT officials and soldiers, and their descendants). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  11. Pensheng-jen [Original Taiwanese] [Benshengren] (本省人) (Original Taiwanese who have been in Taiwan prior to the mass exodus near the conclusion of the Chinese Civil War). Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.

  12. 228 Incident (二二八事件), Feb. 28, 1947. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia.