China is constantly on the economic march with the excesses of capitalism showing up everywhere. Yet this is a state with many opaque agendas and strict controls over the freedom of its population. The Chinese government is keen to use many tricks to gain what it wants. It tries to increase its territory and power by constantly reiterated definition. The addition of disputed islands to the covers of its passports is one such example.
A more famous and serious one is the labelling of Taiwan as a breakaway province. The Chinese government desires the rest of the world to see its distortion of history in the same way it does. After the communists won the civil war in 1949 and the nationalists fled to Taiwan the Republic of China was reduced to a rump. Taiwan, in fact, was the rump of the Republic of China. Therefore, mainland China broke away from the Republic of China (Taiwan). It would be more correct to call China a breakaway province of Taiwan than the other way round. The Chinese government want to alter the world’s thinking by incorrect use of definition. It wants to possess Taiwan and uses definition as one means of increasing its influence and spurious claims.
Historically, Taiwan was never an integral part of China. The original inhabitants were not even Chinese. They were native peoples more akin to the Malay racial group. The second group of inhabitants were the Dutch who arrived at the end of the sixteenth century. It was only in the last 300 years or so that large numbers of Chinese people settled in Taiwan.
If China were to become genuinely democratic and possessed equal living and social standards to those in Taiwan many of the citizens of Taiwan may well be content to reunite with the mainland. However, as things are there are no valid reasons for China to attempt to coerce such a reunification.
One thought on “China – unbridled capitalism with opaque agendas”
Very good John! I learned some Chinese/Taiwanese history. My only criticism is, that you could have been a bit more generous with your use of commas!