Common Strategy for Safeguarding Asian-Pacific Freedom and Peace

Lee Teng-hui

Ladies and Gentlemen: Good Morning.

  This year, The Future of Asia Pacific Forum will be discussing common strategies for economic development and safeguarding national security of Japan and Taiwan. Why common strategy? The reason is-both Taiwan and Japan face challenges from the rise of China’s new serfdom. Therefore, Taiwan and Japan must not only join together, but also go one step further to bring together other free countries, to stop the PRCs hegemonic expansion.

  During the 20th century, mankind suffered twice from the rise of serfdom: first, with the rise of Nazism in Western Europe in the 1930s; and second, with the rise of communism in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe after the end of World War II., Owing to their lack of vigilance, free countries compromised and retreated when confronted by the hegemonic expansion of such serfdom systems in Munich(1938) and Yalta(1945), resulting in the historical catastrophes experienced by mankind.

  Today, Hitler’s Nazi empire and the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe’s communist bloc have disappeared. Some people believe that there is world peace, that we have reached the “end of history.” History will not end. There world is not at peace. While the curtain has fallen on the serfdoms of Nazism and tradition communism in the West, China’s new serfdom is ascending on the historical stage in the East.

Economic Development and Military Expansion under China’s New Serfdom

  The Chinese communist serfdom of the 21st century differs from the closed traditional communist serfdoms of Lenin, Stalin and Mao Tse Tung. It is an open and modern communist serfdom. Opening to the world, like a magnet it draws in capital, resources, skills, talents, developers and multinational corporations from free countries which, combined with the cheap slave labor and low priced state-owned land under its communist serfdom, allows it to become the world’s factory. Then, by dumping its bargain priced products in the world market, it captures huge revenues to further expand its slave economy and military power. Meanwhile, the foregoing leads to decreasing labor wages, increasing unemployment, shrinking profit margins, excess production, depleting energy and natural resources, stagnating industrial development, and widening the gap between rich and poor around the world.

  China’s open serfdom compels foreign corporations to bow to the PRC government’s coercive laws and act as China’s slave instruments in disregard of their own principles and values. Two such examples include requiring multinational internet corporations to cooperate with the PRCs internet police to censor and monitor the people’s thought and speech and Taiwanese businesses to act as united front instruments in the PRC government’s attempt to annex Taiwan.

  More expansionist and deceiving than traditional communism, the new serfdom from China is very adept at manipulating both peaceful and non-peaceful tactics to divide free countries and break them one by one so as to realize and spread its hegemony. On the military front, though Taiwan is the first objective of the PRCs hegemonic expansion, its goal does not end with Taiwan. Once Taiwan is annexed, China will have penetrated the first island chain composing of the Aleutian Islands, Kurile Islands, Japan, Ryukyu Islands, Taiwan, Philippines, to Indonesia. Moreover, it will continue to expand to the second island chain which stretches southward from Japan Islands to Bonin Islands, Mariana Islands, and Carolin Islands. At such time, the Taiwan Strait will become part of the PRCs internal waters and China then has control over a large area over 1500 nautical miles beyond its shores from the Korean peninsula to the South Seas. By then, it would be able to control the sea transportation lanes that are Japan’s lifeline.

  Moreover, China’s missiles are not only aimed at Taiwan, but also at Japan and the United States. Their long-range missiles can already reach an area beyond the Pacific, including the entire North American continent.

  The PRC has already begun to form multilateral alliances with its neighboring countries, such as the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, and bilateral comprehensive strategic partnerships throughout the world with countries in Asia, Europe, Africa, and even Latin America, the backdoor of the United States. Since its establishment in June 2001, the members of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization has expanded from four parties to ten, of which six are member states and four, observer states. These four observers include despotic states such Iran and democratic states such as India and Mongolia. Although the PRC denies the nature of its military alliances, its strategic objective-to drive U.S. influence out of Asia and the Asia Pacific and limited solely to Japan-becomes increasingly evident.

Establishing a Strategic Balance That Favors Freedom in Asia Pacific

  The rise of China’s new serfdom has changed the strategic focus of the world. In the 20th century, this focus remained in the West, in Europe and the Atlantic Ocean. However, it is shifting to the East, to Asia and the Pacific Ocean, in the 21st century. Whether it be interest in economic and political development or concern about potential military conflict, it is now in the Asia Pacific region.

  The United States National Security Strategy document signed by President George Bush in September 2002 introduced a new strategic concept, “to promote a balance of power that favors freedom.” The old balance of power concepts represented by Kissinger and Brezinski effectively favored expanding the power of serfdom. Kissinger advocated “the U.S. supporting the rise of China in Asia to counter balance Japan and stabilize the balance of power in Asia and the Pacific.” Brezinski supported the establishment of a “bipolar cooperation” mechanism between the U.S. and China to “form a global stabilization axis.” Both strategies promoted a balance of power that favored serfdom, repeating the historical errors of Munich and Yalta which resulted in appeasing despots and sacrificing freedom in the pursuit of false stability.

  The immediate problem is: serfdom is on the assault and spreading out in Asia Pacific, a region that is the strategic focus of the world. Meanwhile free countries are compromising and retreating, reenacting the historical scenarios seen during the rise of Nazism and the Soviet empire.

  Historical mistakes should not be repeated. Thus, we ought to abandon the old strategies of Kissinger and Brezinski for a new one that promotes a balance of power that favors freedom.

  I am happy to see the “U.S.-Japan Alliance of Global Cooperation for the 21st Century,” recently announced by Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and U.S. President George Bush, wherein they define the universal values of freedom, democracy, human rights and rule of law as the basis of U.S.-Japan Global Alliance and pledge to work together to shape and support Asia’s transformation. This historic document can be deemed as an application of the U.S. global strategy of “spreading freedom and democracy” and a commitment to the Asian people. One cannot imagine that it is possible to bring freedom and end tyranny in the world while appeasing and conceding to a despotic serfdom that tramples over freedom, democracy and human rights in Asia.

  It should also be pointed out that the U.S.-Japan Alliance alone is not adequate to safeguard freedom and peace in the Asia Pacific in the new century. China is presently dividing the free Asian countries and freedom’s power, isolating Japan, and competing with the United States while within Japan, the pro-China, anti-American group is impairing the coalition of free countries and power of freedom.

  To coalesce free countries and the power of freedom in Asia and to jointly defend against the threat to freedom and peace posed by China’s serfdom, the scope of the U.S.-Japan Alliance of Global Cooperation for the 21st Century ought to be broadened to establish an alliance among free Asian-Pacific countries similar in scale to the European Union or NATO, to draw up common economic development and national security protection strategies, and to enhance cooperation in military, economic, political, diplomatic, technological, cultural, educational and environmental affairs.

  Not long ago, U.S. President Bush signed the “U.S.-EU Summit Declaration: Promoting Peace, Human Rights and Democracy Worldwide” in Vienna. Such joint declaration and action is even more important in an Asia that faces direct challenges from China’s new serfdom. Japan and other free countries in the region must pay close attention to China’s human rights record and support the Chinese people’s struggle to protect their individual rights. There are millions of policemen and about thirty thousand internet policemen in the PRC who engage in oppressing the enslaved Chinese people, including seizing farm land, forcibly demolishing urban dwellings, conducting surveillance, arresting freedom loving intellectuals as well as cruelly persecuting religious groups and ethnic minorities. More than any other slave empires in history, the PRC has utilized large-scale modern violent tactics to tyrannize its own completely defenseless people. The free countries in Asia Pacific ought to establish an independent human rights organization that systematically surveys and monitors the human rights situation inside China and press the PRC government to end its harsh despotic dictatorship.

Taiwan-Japan Cooperation: A New Chapter in Asian-Pacific History.

  The Asia Pacific region that faces the rise of China today is a divided one. One side is the old Asia under serfdom, with China at the helm, including North Korea, Burma, Iran, etc. The other side is free and democratic new Asia, including Japan, Taiwan, India, South Korea, Mongolia, etc. The rise of China represents the last radiance of a waning old Asia. From a historical point of view, this is only a momentary plunge. The current situation facing enslaved Chinese laborers is similar to the situation encountered by colonial laborers under a capitalist system two centuries ago. China’s modern serfdom will ultimately vanish from history. Whether it be sooner or later will depend on the awakening and alliance of free countries.

  The difference today is-the number of free countries and the power of freedom far surpasses the power of serfdom. Forming a balance of power that favors freedom therefore is not an issue. The issue lies in free countries and the power of freedom not realizing that they are being divided. This situation allows serfdom the opportunity to challenge freedom and peace.

  Taiwan and Japan are two free countries in a rising Asia. This is the first rising in Taiwan’s history. During the last twenty years(1986-2006), Taiwan underwent a bloodless revolution, terminating four hundred years of outsiders rule and transforming into a free democratic independent modern country with a constitutional government. Meanwhile, Japan is experiencing a historical renaissance. It has managed to overcome the bursting of its economic bubble at the end of the last century, the “Black 1990s,” and is creating a completely new nation with new economics, new politics, and a new culture.

  Historian Arnold Toynbee once criticized Japan’s pursuit of materialism during the last century by pointing out that “While Japan has achieved material success, it is at the cost of spiritual vitality and creativity. Even nations, like Japan, who succeed in imitating the West, haven’t accomplished anything other than to enlarge the quantity of the machine-made products of the imitated society instead of releasing new creative energies in human souls.”

  Taiwan is treading down Japan’s failed path. By massively investing in China in the pursuit of low wages and cheap land, Taiwan can only duplicate its past by simply imitating past production processes and quantities, meanwhile helping open China’s cheap market to the world at the cost of sacrificing not only Taiwan industries’ vitality and creativity but also Taiwan’s future development.

  The present renaissance of Japan surpasses the material success of Japan in the 20th century. It is a new birth of Japan’s spiritual vitality and creativity. No longer just focused on the promotion of an export oriented economy marketing the “Made in Japan” label, it is also engaged in the promotion of Japanese creativity and comprehensive progress of Japan through the establishment of a new economy, new political system, new culture and new thinking. Since Junichiro Koizumi became Prime Minister, Japan has undergone a historic transformation, far surpassing the imitation era above as described by Toynbee, that allows Japan to radiate new spiritual vitality as it marches forward toward becoming a major country of the world in this new century.

  Taiwan shares with Japan the common values of freedom and democracy as well as a common vision of forging towards an advanced independent sovereignty. Both are also strategic transportation links in the Asia Pacific region and jointly face challenges from an expanding Chinese military hegemony. Thus, they can be seen as natural regional partners in the new century.

  Taiwan and Japan each have their own remaining historical issues. The post-war “Japan Constitutional Law” and “Basic Education Law” drafted during U.S. occupation of Japan have proved to be positive historical instruments in helping Japan quickly develop into a free democracy, economically and technologically advanced modern country. However, they now are shackles to Japan’s path to becoming a major power able to protect mankind’s freedom and peace in Asia Pacific and the world. This is similar to a grownup still wearing children’s outfits. It is time for the new Japan of the new century to change its clothes.

  The same is true for Taiwan. Even today, there are people who long for the old unaltered constitution brought over by the KMT from the old Chinese capital of Nanking. In order to have a quiet revolution, my government administration revised the constitution 6 times to terminate outsiders rule, the permanent legislature, a lifetime presidency, and the “period of communist rebellion” so that Taiwan can peacefully transform from an authoritarian dictatorship to a free democratic independent modern constitutional country. For Taiwan to further develop and become a new Taiwan in the new century, it needs a new constitution, new political system, new economy, new culture, new educational system and new international relations.

  The relationship between Taiwan and Japan is an equal one between two free democratic neighbors and should not be subject to the control of another neighboring serfdom. To ultimately reach its goal of annexing Taiwan by isolating Taiwan in the international community, the PRC created the so-called “one China” principle to restrain the free countries of the world from enjoying normal relations with Taiwan. This is a preposterous situation in the history of international relations. After World War II, Mao Tse Tung and Chiang Kai Shek vied for control of China. Chiang lost and went into exile in Taiwan. However, both dictators each asserted that only he represented “China.” U.S. President Nixon and Secretary of State Kissinger entered into relations with the PRC to counter the Soviet Union, and in 1972 signed the “Shanghai Communiqué,” which includes the following phrase: “all Chinese on either side of the Taiwan Strait maintain there is but one China…The United States Government does not challenge that position.” At that time, the phrase “does not challenge that position” referred to U.S. recognition of both Chiang Kai Shek’s Republic of China and Mao Tse Tung’s People’s Republic of China, with an embassy in Taipei and a liaison office in Beijing. However, Mao would only allow the U.S. to take this position. When Japanese Prime Minister Kakuei Tanaka recognized Mao’s “one China,” he had to break diplomatic relations with Chiang’s “one China,” the so-called “Japan model.” By the time Mao died and Deng Xiao Ping became the leader, he no longer allowed the United States to take its former stance. Deng forced U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his Secretary of State Brezinski to accept the Japan model and break off diplomatic relations, reduce U.S. military presence and abrogate treaties with Taiwan.

  The world today has undergone a sea change: the Soviet Union’s old serfdom has collapsed; the PRCs new serfdom has risen. The Taiwan Strait has Communist China on one side and democratic Taiwan on the other, two countries with two differing systems. This is the status quo. To put the “one China” noose over Taiwan is tantamount to letting China unilaterally change the status quo and strangling a new democracy. Therefore, free countries of the world ought to discard the so-called “one China” principle and establish normal diplomatic relations with Taiwan to maintain the current status quo of a free and democratic Taiwan and peace on the Taiwan Strait.

  Creating the so-called “one China” concept started with Nixon and Brezinski and followed by Tanaka and Ohira. Ending it by starting a strategic partnership with Taiwan can begin with Japan followed by the United States. They are already equal global partners. There is no need for Japan to always trail America, which already carries a heavy global burden on its shoulders. It is reasonable for Japan to carry the key responsibility for promoting the spread of freedom and stopping the expansion of serfdom in the Asia Pacific region.

  Through rigorous discussion this forum will bring together different ideas that hopefully will spawn a common strategy for Taiwan and Japan to promote peace and freedom in the Asia Pacific region as well as substantive ways to strengthen both countries’ economy, political system, military affairs, and culture so as to create a new chapter in the history of the region. Lastly, I wish you good health and a successful forum. Thank you.