Taiwanese Identity and the "One China Principle":
Policies of the Lee Teng-hui Administration towards China

Tokyo University of Foreign Studies
(written in March 2001)


The Taiwanese politics entered a new stage when the opposition party (the Democratic Progressive Party) candidate Chen Shui-bian won the presidential election in March 2000. In the previous election in March 1996, China launched missiles off the coast of Taiwan. In the 2000 election, China again intervened to prevent Chen Shui-bian from winning the election because he was known to support an independent Taiwan. However, such actions made the people of Taiwan have ill feelings toward China. The relationship between the two countries has been tense, and it is one of the largest unstable factors in the East Asian region. Taiwan succeeded in achieving a rapid economic growth in the 1980s: it is even called a "Republic of Computer" (ROC) in the 1990s. Taiwan has already achieved political democratization, where the government can be peacefully changed by election. The people of Taiwan have become confident in themselves and Taiwan has become assertive in international politics. This reflects the emergence of Taiwanese identity.

Although it is certain that the Taiwanese identity has become strong, it is necessary to examine whether it directly leads to nationalism or not. The position of Taiwan looks different to different people because in Taiwan ethnicity, identity and nationalism are interrelated and entwisted complicatedly, and people have different viewpoints accordingly. The politics after democratization are considered to be a process of seeking for an answer to difficult questions: what is Taiwan; and to what country or nation do the people living there belong? Taiwan has been in the middle of the two strong currents of Taiwanese identity and Chinese identity, and the relations between the two sides reflect the conflict between the changing direction of the Taiwanese politics and the Chinese political system. This paper examines the development of the Lee Teng-hui administration's Mainland policy, with special attention to the Taiwanese identity and the "One China Principle."

"One China Principle"

Taiwan was ceded by the Ching dynasty to Japan in 1895 as a result of the Sino-Japanese war. In 1945, Japan unconditionally surrendered in World War II, and Taiwan was taken over by the Republic of China. The government of the ROC lost control over the Mainland and fled to Taiwan in December 1949. Since then, a state in Mainland China governed by the Chinese Communist Party (the CCP) and a state in Taiwan governed by the Nationalist Party (the KMT) have confronted each other across the Taiwan Strait. The basis of this adverse relation was the civil war between the CCP and the KMT. The CCP won the civil war and took control of the majority of the domain and population in 1949. Nevertheless the KMT continuously controlled a part of the domain as a kind of refugee government, a situation quite unique in the modern world history.
The People's Republic of China (the PRC) insists that the Republic of China (the ROC) was overthrown when the PRC was established on October 1, 1949, that the PRC took over the domain, sovereignty and population of the ROC according to the conventions of the international law, and that Taiwan was included in the domain.1 However, the ROC did not accept the establishment of the PRC and continuously maintained the right to represent China in the United Nations. Both countries used the "One China Principle" as a basis to assert their legitimacy. Both had the common understanding that there was a country called China that included Mainland China and Taiwan, and that there was a region unjustly occupied by a rebel power.
However, in reality, both the PRC and the ROC have their own domains and population and maintain their respective governments and armed forces. Although there is a theory that international recognition is a requirement of a sovereign state, it is impossible to deny the existence of a state that has the domain and population. Neither the PRC in the 1950s and 1960s can be considered not to be a sovereign state just because other countries did not recognize it, nor the ROC after the 1980s can be considered not to be a sovereign state just because many countries stopped recognizing the ROC.
The relationship between the two sides of the Taiwan Strait was, objectively, a state-to-state relationship, but subjectively, it was a relation between one region governed by a legitimate government and the other governed by a rebel force, because neither side recognized the other nor permits other countries to regard themselves as two different states. Initially, both the ROC and the PRC tried to solve the situation by force, with such slogans as "Emancipate Taiwan" and "Fight back the Mainland." However, the stage in which military actions could be used gradually faded away, and the adverse relation between the two sides changed into a kind of disregard and disrelation while remaining hostile to each other.
The PRC pressed those countries that recognized the ROC as the representative of China to break off relations with the ROC, and finally succeeded in excluding the ROC from the United Nations and other international organizations in 1971. As a result, the predominance of the PRC in international politics became apparent. Then, the PRC had a room to adapt a strategy to gradually suppress the living space of the KMT government. It was fortunate for the PRC that Taiwan was governed by the KMT which stuck to the "One China Principle", which enabled the PRC to pursue the policy of maintaining the status quo. Unless Taiwan tried to separate from China as an independent state, the PRC had no reason to risk invading and absorbing Taiwan by armed force. It was also true that the PRC had been preoccupied in many urgent domestic problems such as the consolidation of the socialist system, struggle for power within the CCP, and promotion of reform and open market policies, leaving few resources to concentrate on the Taiwan problem. The KMT was struggling to reinforce the legitimacy of its control of the Taiwan region by positioning the adverse relations of the Taiwan Strait in the Cold War structure, which helped to garner support from the United States. The KMT government strongly promoted Chinese nationalism as an official ideology in Taiwan. For example, the government regarded the Minnan language, which is the mother tongue of the majority of the Taiwanese, as merely a secondary language and restricted the use of it, while accelerating the education of Mandarin. Moreover, they established school curricula to implant the Chinese identity by emphasizing the history, geography and culture of Mainland China while de-emphasizing those of Taiwan.
"One China Principle" should not be regarded as a mere diplomatic policy, but it should instead be understood in this political structure. That is, "One China Principle" was a concept associated with Chinese nationalism and Chinese identity that was exploited by the Chiang Kai-shek government to justify its own authoritarian rule in Taiwan. The Chiang Kai-shek government strongly promoted the Chinese nationalism to fight back the Mainland and unify China by the Sun Yat-sen's Three Principles of the People. They thought that only Chinese people could carry out such a significant mission as the unification of China, therefore Mainlanders were superior. However, this would make sense only when the people of Taiwan had the Chinese identity. Although the KMT asserted moral superiority in Taiwan, they had no measure to intervene in the Mainland affairs. Only thing they could do was to wait for the situation where the CCP made a mistake and lost the power. The risk of war was reduced in the 1970s, while Taiwan became isolated because major powers recognized the PRC government as the sole legitimate government of China. Particularly, the ROC was deeply shocked in 1979 by the recognition of the PRC by the United States, which had been supporting the political and economic structure of Taiwan. The "external legitimacy" of the KMT government was lost. 2
In the 1980s, Deng Xiaoping led the PRC government to establish the policies towards Taiwan based on "peaceful unification" and the "One country, two systems," keeping the planned return of Hong Kong in perspective. Presenting the "Policies for returning Taiwan to the country and achieving peaceful unification" (Nine Articles), Ye Jianying proposed that both sides should exchange dialogues, and that the CCP and KMT form the third Kuomintang-Communist collaboration as a step toward unification. Deng Xiaoping stated that Taiwan could maintain its own military and retain certain rights for diplomatic business including the issuance of passports and visas under the "One country, two systems". 3
However, holding up an ideal of unifying China by the Three Principles of the People, the KMT declined the proposal of the CCP and took a "Three-no policy" (no contact, no discussion, and no compromise) against the Mainland. However, illegal movements of humans and materials gradually increased between the two sides. Chiang Ching-kuo finally decided to adjust the "Three-no policy" and permitted the indirect import of 27 agricultural and industrial raw materials in 1987. At the same time, he also allowed Taiwanese to visit relatives in the Mainland China. These decisions were made along with increased economic activities and policies of democratization, such as the lifting of martial law, in Taiwan. Chiang Ching-kuo never changed the "One China Principle," but, unlike his father, Chiang Kai-shek, recognized the necessity to develop Taiwan as a permanent place to live instead of a temporary place.

Appearance of the Lee Teng-hui Administration

The PRC considered as enemies all the administrations in Taiwan since Chiang Kai-shek, but the Lee Teng-hui Administration was not the special target of hostility when Lee took office in 1988. It seems that the leadership of the CCP did not make a judgment whether Lee Teng-hui himself was favorable or not. 4 President Lee Teng-hui continued the policy to promote the exchange between the two sides initiated by Chiang Ching-kuo. He sent a Taiwanese delegation to the Asian Games held in Beijing in 1990, which was received with a warm welcome. He also permitted indirect investment to, and technical collaboration with, the PRC in 1990, and further increased economic exchange under the condition that materials should be transported via a third point, such as Hong Kong, to avoid direct contact.
In 1991, Lee Teng-hui renounced the policy of "absolute opposition to communism and the restoration of the country" made by Chiang Kai-shek and abolished the "temporary article during mobilization and civil commotion" that specified the CCP as a rebel organization as a step to direct the relation between the two sides from hostility to coexistence. He established the Strait Exchange Foundation as a channel for dialogue with the PRC. In the same year, the Lee Teng-hui Administration adopted the National Unification Manifesto to reconfirm that the basis for the national policy would be to unify China. The manifesto declared that the unification of China was a hope of all Chinese people, that the Mainland and Taiwan were the territory of China, and that all Chinese people had to take the responsibility of promoting the unification of China. Judging from subsequent actions by Lee Teng-hui, it was doubtful how earnestly he thought of the unification, and these statements could be interpreted as tactical measures to go ahead of the conservative group within the KMT. However, it was true that the unification was the goal of the government's official policy at that time. 5 A series of these actions towards China indicated a new way of thinking in Taiwan and expressed the best intentions to the PRC. The PRC also admired the actions of the Taiwanese side through the Xinhuashe6 and established the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait as an organization for promoting talks with Taiwan. Although these were non-governmental organizations, both sides had channels to promote dialogues with each other.
However, a new problem emerged that was not considered when the "Three-no policy" was implemented to prohibit any kind of contact. When they talked about the practice of postal and communication systems, a question arose whether it should be treated as a domestic matter or an international matter. The PRC tried to apply the domestic business practice to the conferences between the two organizations. 7 Thus, the discussion had to touch the "One China Principle".
When the Strait Exchange Foundation and the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait had negotiations at the business level in October 1992, the Taiwanese side insisted that the "One China" indicated the ROC while the Chinese side insisted that "One China" indicated the PRC. When the Taiwanese side proposed that both parties should assert the contents of "One China" orally, the Chinese side did not approve of it, but did not reject it explicitly. As such, it is reported that there was a consensus among them that both parties would express the interpretation of "One China". 8 The Chinese side described that it was confirmed in the 1992 consensus as an oral statement that the PRC maintained the "One China Principle" and the inconsistency on the interpretation of "One China" was not touched at business level talks. 9 Both parties did not go on with the discussion further. When a top-level meeting was arranged between Koo Chen-fu, the chairmen of the Strait Exchange Foundation and Wang Daohan, the chairman of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait in Singapore in April 1993, the full-scale contact across the Strait was initiated.
The main issue of the Lee Teng-hui Administration was how to construct the basis for the democratization of Taiwan within the framework of the "One China Principle." It was impossible to put off democratization any longer, because Lee Teng-hui was under the pressure by the native Taiwanese, the majority of the population, to realize the dream of establishing their own government. However, the final goal of democratization could lead to the establishment of a Taiwanese government by the Taiwanese. This way of thinking was never consistent with the framework of the "One China Principle."
The Lee Teng-hui Administration abandoned the conventional policy to compete with the CCP for the sovereignty of China, but set out a new concept of the "One China, Two equal political entities." 10 Lee Teng-hui accepted the PRC that controlled the Mainland by revising the stiff diplomatic policy in the era of Chiang Kai-shek and Chiang Ching-kuo and called it "practical diplomacy". It showed a clear contrast to the Chiangs era when even the fact that the PRC controlled the Mainland was ignored by the principle of "absolute opposition to communism and the restoration of the country." The name of the PRC itself was a taboo in Taiwan for a long time: the PRC was often called "Communist China" and "Communist gang". Lee Teng-hui was the first politician who called the PRC by its official name.
Lee Teng-hui decided to resume visiting foreign countries as president after a long interval. He first visited Singapore in March 1989. He refused the insistence of the conservative group that he should not visit foreign countries unless it was an official visit as the head of the Republic of China, and accepted that he was called "President from Taiwan". 11 Lee Teng-hui started "active diplomacy" to enlarge the survival space of Taiwan in international politics after 1993 when he successfully consolidated his political power in Taiwan, also in the name of "practical diplomacy." It was "active diplomacy" based on the clear consciousness of the Taiwanese identity, and it was beyond the "practical diplomacy," in the sense that the government aimed to flexibly adopt the reality of Taiwan in the world in place of the rigid diplomatic policies in the Chiangs era. The purpose of the "active diplomacy" was to assert to the world that the ROC (Taiwan) was a sovereign independent state.
The Lee Teng-hui Administration then started campaigns for becoming a member of the United Nations again in 1993. Since the withdrawal in 1971, the issue of re-affiliation with the United Nations had never been included in the foreign policies of the ROC. The United Nations' resolution admitting the PRC as representing China was valid, and if the ROC tried to re-join the United Nations in another status, it would immediately conflict with the "One China Principle" and cause disputes about unification and independence. The official move to re-join the United Nations was greatly influenced by the activities of the DPP that advocated it first. The government aimed to have the United Nations recognize Taiwan as a political entity without competing with the PRC for the representation of China. Therefore, the government did not mention the right of the PRC to take part in the United Nations and was not particular about the form and name by which the ROC would join the United Nations. 12
Although Lee Teng-hui understood that Taiwan's re-joining the United Nations was unlikely to come because the majority of countries recognized the insistence of the PRC, he aimed to cause an argument about the fact that Taiwan, with more than 20 million people, was internationally ignored. This move was set forward when Hao Pei-ts'un, who had insisted on the policy of "absolute opposition to communism and the restoration of the country", resigned as the top of the Executive Yuan. The Executive Yuan formed the "special committee for the entry into the United Nations" in 1993, and seven Latin American countries that had diplomatic relations with Taiwan requested to establish a special committee for examining the entry of Taiwan into the United Nations at the General Assembly of the same year. 13 Twenty-nine countries, such as Nicaragua, supported the entry of Taiwan to the United Nations in the United Nations General Assembly of 1995. 14
Although Lee Teng-hui suspended visits to foreign countries after his first visit to Singapore in 1989, he visited the Philippines, Indonesia and Thailand in February 1994 as "holiday diplomacy" and Nicaragua, Costa Rica, South Africa and Swaziland in May 1994 as "ceremony diplomacy." He also showed a strong intention to visit Japan at the Asian Games held in Hiroshima in 1994, but it was not successful. Apart from such diplomatic activities, Lee Teng-hui set out to adjust the strategy of the armed forces: he shifted the core of the armed forces from the army to the air and naval forces in order to strengthen the defense capability of Taiwan. The government succeeded in dramatically building up the air force as the central pillar of its defense strategy by purchasing 150 F16 fighters from the United States and 60 Mirage 2000 fighters from France.

Enhanced identity

The basic policy of China towards Taiwan was to confine the ROC in the framework of the "One China Principle." Therefore, the PRC never allowed the ROC to be active in the international arena. For example, the PRC accepted the entry of Taiwan to the Olympic Games only as a region called "Chinese Taipei," and did not admit Taiwan's move when the ROC wanted to invite the Asian Games to be held in Taiwan. Taiwan successfully took part in APEC established in 1992 as "Chinese Taipei" because APEC was in principle supposed to be a conference of economic entities. However, the PRC refused to allow Lee Teng-hui to participate in the informal APEC summit conference.
Around this time, Taiwan began to take part in various international activities taking advantage of its economic power. To the PRC, the array of ROC's activities appeared to be intended to separate from China and obtain independence. A series of "active diplomacy" changed the character of the tension between the ROC and PRC. Particularly, the movements for re-joining the United Nations dramatically enhanced the apprehension of the PRC because, according to the interpretation of the PRC, the re-joining of Taiwan was possible only when two Chinas were recognized or Taiwan became independent. 15
The PRC always used the following syllogism in arguing the "One China Principle": (1) China is one country; (2) Taiwan is an inseparable part of China; and (3) the PRC is the sole legitimate government to represent China. This logic was carried in a white paper entitled "The Taiwan Problem and the Unification of China" published by the Taiwan Affairs Office of the PRC's State Council in August 1993 when the PRC was increasingly on alert for the activities of the ROC. Subsequently, Jiang Zemin stated that "Taiwan is a province of the PRC" in the APEC conference in Seattle in November 1993, without using the term China as a "buffer". 16 This caused resentment from Lee Teng-hui and others in the Taiwanese side. Protesting the statement of Jiang Zemin, Chiang Ping-kun, the Minister of Economic Affairs who attended the APEC meeting as a representative of Taiwan stated, "Taipei and Beijing are two sovereign states that do not belong to each other." In talks with a Japanese writer, Shiba Ryotaro, Lee Teng-hui stated flatly against Jiang Zemin's remark, "the CCP wants to make Taiwan a province of the PRC. What a strange dream!" 17
The repulsion to the PRC's treating Taiwan as its province and containing Taiwan's activities in the international arena prompted the Lee Teng-hui Administration to slightly adjust the "One China Principle." The Mainland Committee of the Executive Yuan published the "Explanation of the Cross-Strait Relationship" in July 1994. The paper summarized the Taiwanese position as follows:
The ROC government adheres to "One China" and opposes the concepts of "Two Chinas" or "One China and One Taiwan," but it also asserts that the ROC and the PRC have their own sovereign rights under the historical and political realities. It is necessary to recognize that both sides of the Strait have existed and been ruled as different entities, and that two international juridical bodies coexisted internationally.
Although the document described that this insistence was completely different from the concepts of "Two Chinas" or "One China and One Taiwan," it presented a new definition that "One China" meant historic, geographical, cultural, and kindred China. 18
At this period the Lee Teng-hui Administration earnestly committed itself to the "Initiative for the Asia-Pacific Operation Center." This plan was intended to attract multinational corporations, make them use Taiwan as the basis of management or the basis to enter the East Asian market including the Mainland China, and strengthen the role of Taiwan as an intermediary in the Asian and Pacific region. 19 In practice, the government intended to invite multinational corporations in the fields of manufacturing, finance, air and sea transportation, communications, and mass media to put their operation bases in Taiwan, thus to replace Hong Kong in some of the functions it had performed. This was an ambitious plan for establishing a new identity of Taiwan with the wide Chinese market in its hinterland, as a free and prosperous marine country at the center of the Asian and Pacific region. Although this plan would not be realized in a short period, it, no doubt, was an initiative reflecting the increased economic power of Taiwan and the emergence of the Taiwanese identity.
While the Lee Teng-hui Administration committed itself to the "active diplomacy" and re-joining the United Nations, it did not try to be hostile to or take a provocative attitude toward the PRC. According to the logic of Lee Teng-hui, these activities were the steps required to establish the Taiwanese identity and did not come from the intention to be hostile to the PRC or from a nationalistic desire to become independent. However, there were several events that threw cold water on the hope for unification on the Taiwanese side. The Tiananmen Square Incident in 1989 revealed the nature of the dictatorial rule by the CCP. The cultural and educational policies in the reign of the Chiangs distinguished China as an abstract concept from the real China ruled by the CCP, however, the incident unveiled the fact that China equaled the CCP dictatorship, depressed the people who believed in the unification of China.
A dismal incident occurred in April 1994 at Lake Qiandao in the Province of Zhejiang, the southeast of China, in which a tourist group from Taiwan was assaulted and set on fire by a robber group, resulting in the death of twenty-four Taiwanese. As the PRC announced immediately after the incident that it was an "accident" in which a fire broke out on a cruise boat, the PRC was suspected of trying to hide the true story. Furthermore, the PRC restricted the bereaved who came to China to confirm the identification of the victims. In addition to the shocking nature of the incident, the behavior of the PRC enraged the Taiwanese. The Taiwanese, irrespective of political inclinations, recognized how the political system and people's consciousness of human rights in the PRC were different from those of Taiwan, and sensed that "the PRC was a terrible place."
Being aware of such a sentiment of the Taiwanese, President Lee Teng-hui severely criticized the leaders of the CCP, saying, "Vicious people have ganged up, just like bandits. How can we call them a government? Such a government should have been abandoned by citizens." 20 The incident strongly impacted the Taiwanese view of the PRC, as was clearly reflected by respondents of a questionnaire survey on unification and independence. 21 It was inevitable that some people, shocked by the Tiananmen Square and Lake Qiandao incidents, felt that the Mainland Chinese were completely different from the Taiwanese. The subsequent launches of missiles nearby Taiwan by the People's Liberation Army replaced the hope of Taiwanese toward the PRC with disappointment. The consciousness that China and Taiwan were two different entities became strong even among those who believed that people on the two sides were the same Chinese. As a result, the Taiwanese identity gained momentum.

United Daily News' survey on unification and independence

Turning point: 1995

A mounting sense of crisis spread in the PRC and the Chinese government gave warning at every occasion when the Lee Teng-hui Administration promoted "active diplomacy" and the Taiwanese identity. It was true, however, that the CCP had no definite measures to suppress such movements in Taiwan. Jiang Zemin did not take an immediate forcible action, but carefully searched for a way to break the deadlock and announced the "Eight Points" comprehensive policy toward Taiwan in January 1995. It did not state clearly that China is identical with the PRC, but emphasized the "One China Principle", which had only vague contents. 22 Notable features in the "Eight Points" were an appeal to Taiwan to begin the "conference to officially finish the hostile situation across the Strait", and a proposal for mutual visit by Jiang Zemin and Lee Teng-hui. What was more surprising was the modest tone of the speech as a whole, and that it contained factors that made Taiwanese expect that both parties would enter into negotiations. While reserving a possibility of military action against the intervention from foreign countries and the movement for the independence of Taiwan, the CCP leadership declared that the Chinese would not attack the Chinese, and made the maximum concession to the Lee Teng-hui Administration that had required the PRC's renunciation of the use of armed force as the precondition for the commencement of talks.
In response, Lee Teng-hui announced "Six Points" in April 1995. In the address, the Lee Teng-hui Administration made negative answers to the noted proposals by Jiang Zemin. Why did the eager proposal of Jiang Zemin result in only curt answers from Taiwan? Basically, the way the Jiang Zemin government understood the Taiwan problem was based on the civil war between the CCP and the KMT. Therefore, by declaring that the Chinese would never attack the Chinese or by proposing the termination of hostile relation to the KMT, an archenemy, the CCP considered that it would make a great concession to Taiwan, and that should work as a key to break the deadlock. From the standpoint of the CCP, the KMT deserved annihilation, but now the CCP would allow the KMT to survive, which they thought was a great concession. However, due to the gradual spread of the Taiwanese identity, the Taiwanese government and people were no longer interested in discussing the legitimacy of a government to rule "One China". Therefore, the intention of the Jiang Zemin government to find a way to start full-scale negotiations proved unsuccessful. In retrospect, it was the only occasion when talks between Jiang Zemin and Lee Teng-hui seemed plausible, but the chance was lost abruptly when Lee Teng-hui announced a plan to visit the United States.
The PRC tried to "punish" Taiwan by a visible measure of the People's Liberation Army's maneuvers off the coast of Taiwan. The sense of crisis and unrest spread in Taiwan and the stock market began to fall. The pressure from the PRC was felt vividly. The hostility of the PRC toward Lee Teng-hui increased as the presidential election campaign went on in 1996, and the PRC's threat to Taiwan mounted. During the election, the PRC launched missiles to somewhere off the coasts of Kaohsiung and Keelung to demonstrate that the People's Liberation Army could blockade Taiwan. This made the United States send aircraft carriers around Taiwan.
The PRC took such forcible actions because they felt that Taiwanese nationalism was behind the "active diplomacy" of Lee Teng-hui. The PRC could have taken more moderate actions if the Lee Teng-hui Administration had only expressed localism or its dissatisfaction with Beijing. However, they had no other choice than taking such firm actions because Taiwanese nationalism was completely incompatible with Chinese nationalism and could become a potential threat to the legitimacy of the CCP's rule. On the other hand, it seemed that Lee Teng-hui put higher priority on establishing Taiwanese identity before asserting Taiwanese nationalism, considering not only the relations with the PRC, but also the problem of ethnic groups in Taiwan and serious conflict over national identity within Taiwan. Therefore, Lee Teng-hui had no intention to start a war of independence with the PRC, even though he expressed self-assertion of Taiwan. However, the PRC could not understand the way Lee Teng-hui distinguished the Taiwanese identity from Taiwanese nationalism.

"No haste, be patient"

The Taiwanese government restricted the economic exchanges with China to private sphere and to those conducted via a third place. It did not regulate capital investment from Taiwan to China, but regulated all the economic activities from China: it introduced a license system for imports from China, restricted the visits of Chinese living in the Mainland to Taiwan, and totally banned capital investment from China. However, such an irregular "indirect, private, and one-way" exchange system came gradually under pressure from Taiwanese economic circle. 23 In fact, even the native Taiwanese corporations and traders who supported Lee Teng-hui requested him to change the system. As the relations between the two sides became tense from Lee Teng-hui's visit to the United States in 1995 to the presidential election in 1996, the Taiwanese businessmen who had business in China repeatedly expressed that they did not want the hostile relationship with China.
During the presidential election, Lee Teng-hui and other leaders of the government handled the dissatisfaction of the businessmen by announcing that the tense relationship would be relaxed after the election. After the election, however, Lee Teng-hui proposed a policy of "no haste, be patient" for the investment to China. In the National Assembly in August 1996, President Lee Teng-hui stated that the investment by Taiwanese corporations to China already meant a great threat to the economic growth and industrial development of Taiwan, and that it was necessary to re-examine the plan to create the "Asian-Pacific Operation Center" with the Mainland China as hinterland. President Lee requested those concerned to impose a certain limit on the investment to the Mainland for each business sector. 24 This made it difficult for the "Initiative for the Asian-Pacific Operation Center" to materialize. Further, President Lee at the National Assembly of Business Managers in September 1996 pointed out the over-investment to the Mainland again, using the words "no haste, be patient," and required the participants to increase investment in Taiwan. Subsequently, the government banned the investment to China in the areas of high technology industry and infrastructure, as well as all the investment projects that exceeded 50 million dollars.
The emergence of the Taiwanese identity could not be separated from the economic growth of Taiwan. And the Taiwanese economy began to exploit the Mainland as a new market in 1990s; it had close relationships with the Chinese economy in the Mainland in trade and investment. However, the PRC was politically determined not to tolerate the development of Taiwanese nationalism and put pressures on Taiwan. Therefore, the Lee Teng-hui Administration had to take a delicate action to ease the dilemma between politics and economics. The policy of "no haste, be patient" reflected the contradiction of the complicated relations between China and Taiwan. The second-term of the Lee Teng-hui Administration was characterized by the move to protect and strengthen the interests of Taiwan, such as the requirement for Taiwanese corporations to curb the investment to China. Furthermore its political initiatives such as the amendment of the Constitution to abolish the Provincial government of Taiwan revealed vividly the Lee Administration's will to establish the Taiwanese identity.
However, the government took a careful action in the relations with the PRC. As for the interpretation of the "One China Principle," the cabinet ministers concerted their opinions to the formula of "One China being governed separately", in accordance with the formula of "One China expressed by each side". Therefore, Lee Teng-hui, Vice President Lian Chan, and Prime Minister Hsiao expressed their views in line with the formula. 25 The PRC also slightly relaxed its severe attitude toward Taiwan by making different statements to Taiwan and other countries. For example, Wang Daohan stated in 1997, "One China is not equal to the PRC nor the ROC. c One China is a country that has not been unified yet and is progressing to unification." 26 The officials of the Foreign Ministry of the PRC announced to each foreign country that the PRC represented China, while the heads of the Association for Relations Across the Strait and the Taiwan Affairs Office expressed more flexible interpretations to Taiwan, thus flew up sounding balloons some times. 27 Since both parties appealed to each other to start a talk, it seemed that the tense relationship would be gradually relaxed. Thus, the visit of Koo Chen-fu to China was decided, and some analysts said that the relations across the Strait returned to the stage before the visit of Lee Teng-hui to the United States. However, there was a change that influenced the international relations around Taiwan. It was the expression of the "three-no policy" made by President Clinton of the United States in June 1998. The policy stated that the United States would not support the following three points: (1) the independence of Taiwan; (2) the concept of two Chinas, or One China and One Taiwan; and (3) the entry of Taiwan as a state into international organizations (including the United Nations). 28 This "three-no policy" was intended to relieve the tension between the two sides in 1995 and 1996 and make the current status stable by announcing that the United States would not support Taiwan taking action to change the current status. The United States feared that the further expansion of Taiwanese nationalism might cause conflict between the two sides of the Strait, which would involve the United States in an undesirable war.
The US strategy was intended to maintain the current status of the Taiwan Strait. The United States also announced the definite opposition to the military intervention by the PRC as in the past, and worked with Japan to include Taiwan in the guidelines of the US - Japan Security Treaty. The United States took an engagement policy toward the PRC to secure stability by being actively engaged in the affairs of the PRC. Although the United States did not greatly change its policy towards China, it surely changed the policy toward Taiwan by sending a strong message to Taiwan that the United Stated would not accept the change in the current status by Taiwan, and that it recognized the position of the PRC in more detailed lines than before. The United States came to watch out for the moves of Taiwan as a risk factor that could damage the precarious balance between China and Taiwan, and decided to check the "active diplomacy" of Lee Teng-hui and the development of nationalism in Taiwan. 29
After President Clinton expressed the "three-no policy", Lee Teng-hui pretended to be calm, stating, "The United States' policy toward Taiwan will not change." Nonetheless, he admitted that Clinton's new policy had an impact on the relations across the Strait and "practical diplomacy." 30 The preparation for a businesslike talk was made and Koo Chen-fu visited China in October 1998. There was a meeting between Taiwan's Koo Chen-fu and China's Wang Daohan after about five years' absence since April 1993. Although both parties asserted their ways of interpretations on the "One China Principle" without reaching an agreement, the meeting between Koo Chen-fu and Jiang Zemin (as the General Secretary of the CCP) was also arranged. Since both sides (the Strait Exchange Foundation of Taiwan and the Association for Relations Across the Strait of China) agreed to continue the talk, it seemed that the tension was relaxed a little. Subsequently, Wang Daohan's visit to Taiwan was discussed at secretary level, and both parties agreed that he would visit Taiwan in September or October 1999. 31

The "special state-to-state relationship" and the new tension

After April 1999, presidential candidates began their vigorous campaigns in Taiwan. The political focus was shifted to who would succeed Lee Teng-hui. It was not supposed that Lee Teng-hui, with less than one year in the office, would take a big action. However, he overturned such anticipation when he accepted an interview by Deutsche Welle (German Radio) on July 9, 1999, and said that the relation across the Strait was the "special state-to-state relationship." The point of his statement was that the relation across the Strait could be interpreted as a state-to-state relationship, or at least a relationship between two special countries ever since the amendment of the Constitution in 1991. He also mentioned that it was not an internal relation in "One China", referred in such terms as "one legitimate government and one rebel organization" or "one central government and one local government." 32
Lee Teng-hui searched for the right time to strike back to President Clinton's "three-no policy" that suppressed the international space of Taiwan. That was the meaning of the theory of "special state-to-state relationship." Lee Teng-hui explained that he announced the theory before the Chinese government would declare Taiwan to be a local government of China at the National Day in October 1999. 33 However, this reason was not persuasive because the Chinese government often made such declarations.
From the viewpoint of the international society, the "One China Principle" is easy to understand as the logic of the Chinese side, but it is difficult to understand as that of the Taiwanese side. Chang Hsiao-yen, the Foreign Minister of Taiwan, gave a speech at the Committee of Foreign and Defense Policies of the European Parliament in May 1997 that the policy of the unification would be maintained, and that the "practical diplomacy" of Taiwan was not intended to become independent. However, the members of the committee put the following straightforward questions, "It does not make sense to oppose to 'One country, two systems,' while supporting the unification of China", "After all what are the implications of the 'One China Principle' and the unification of China for the ROC?" and "How can a democratic state and a communist state talk about unification?" 34 A year later at the Advisory Committee of the Mainland Committee, an opinion was expressed that it was disadvantageous to Taiwan to talk with the CCP in the frame of the "One China Principle". 35 The Taiwanese identity could no longer fit the frame of the "One China Principle."
Since the importance of the "One China Principle" was reduced in the politics of Taiwan during the period of Lee Teng-hui, the principle was unofficially replaced with a formula produced after a struggle, that is, "the ROC had always been a sovereign independent state since it became independent in 1912." Now, increasing number of Taiwanese feel nothing strange even when the formula is shortened as "Taiwan is an sovereign independent state." In fact, Lee Teng-hui himself once stated that "Taiwan is an independent sovereign state" in the interview with the Washington Post on November 8, 1997, although it was corrected by the Foreign Minister and others as implying "The ROC is an independent state with sovereignty." 36
Considering the emergence of the Taiwanese identity, the "special state-to-state relationship" by Lee Teng-hui was never an abrupt or new concept. Aside from the naming, it is undeniable that Taiwan exists as an independent state. Foreigners who want to visit Taiwan have to apply for a visa to the authorities of Taiwan, not the PRC. The president of Taiwan is chosen by the direct election by the Taiwanese electorate not by others. Although many countries ignore such facts, nobody can deny that Taiwan is a state. Therefore, the "special state-to-state relationship" can be considered to just describe the facts on both sides of the Strait. However, the theory of "special state-to-state relationship" stated by the president of the ROC has the different meaning from that asserted by foreign researchers, because it implies that the president denies the "One China Principle," which has been the official standpoint of the ROC.
Naturally, the PRC showed strong negative reactions to the statement of Lee Teng-hui. The PRC interpreted the "special state-to-state relationship as a theory that would split China and considered it equal to the insistence of the independence of Taiwan. Jiang Zemin himself blamed Lee Teng-hui, saying, "He took a dangerous step toward the breakup of China, and his theory is a serious defiance of the 'One China Principle'." Then, he again stated that "there is only 'One China' in the world, Taiwan is a part of China, and the sovereignty and territory of China can never be divided." 37 Wang Daohan stated that the basis for the talk across the Strait was lost and canceled his visit to Taiwan. 38 The relations across the Strait became tense again. The Taiwan stock market again fell sharply and dark clouds hung low on the Taiwanese economy as at the visit of Lee Teng-hui to the United States a few years before. Soon after the theory of "special state-to-state relationship" was announced, there was an interruption of electric service in the northern part of Taiwan. Although it was a simple accident caused by a fallen substructure for a power transmission line due to heavy rain, many people initially associated it with an attack or intervention by the PRC.
On September 21, 1999, when the impact of the theory of "special state-to-state relationship" was still mounting, Taiwan was hit by a strong earthquake. The PRC should have helped Taiwan immediately, irrespective of the different political standpoints. But the relations across the Strait remained unsettled and the anti-PRC sentiments among the Taiwanese people became strong. When Jiang Zemin sent a message of sympathy on the radio on the day of the earthquake, the people of Taiwan felt that the PRC took a reasonable action. However, the following events were then reported:
1. Foreign Minister of the PRC Tang Jiaxuan stated in the United Nations General Assembly, "A strong earthquake occurred in the Taiwan Province of our country, and seriously damaged the life and properties of the brothers in Taiwan" and "I hereby express the gratitude to the countries in the world for their sympathy, visits, and help". 39
2. Russian mass media reported that the Russian rescue aircraft was delayed for 12 hours because the PRC government did not permit it to fly over the Mainland and it had to fly via Siberia and the Far East. (However, Zhang Jincheng, the secretary of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait denied it and announced that it flew over the Mainland.) 40
3. Secretary General Sun Aiming of the Chinese Red Cross announced that the Chinese Red Cross required Red Cross organizations of other countries to get the permission before they sent money and supplies to Taiwan. 41
Hearing these actions by the PRC, the Taiwanese thought that the PRC government brought politics to the field of humanitarian assistance. Even The United Daily News, which was close to the unification group, harshly criticized the PRC government. The Liberty Times, which had been criticizing the PRC, published very strong anti-PRC expressions in the pages of reader's opinion every day, "The PRC badly damaged the sentiment of the people of Taiwan," "the PRC insulted the people of Taiwan" and "Mainland China's high officials are bastards." The countries that sent rescue teams, such as Japan, United States, Korea, Mexico, and Russia became highly appreciated, and the disappointment and ill feelings towards the PRC spread. As a popular TV personality said on a TV program, "Many countries sent people to help us. I felt that Taiwan was a country." This tragedy stimulated the Taiwanese identity to increase. The PRC government again failed in grasping the hearts of the Taiwanese.
The PRC government continued to fail further. As the presidential election of Taiwan in 2000 approached, there appeared speculations on the Chinese attitude towards the election. Li Zhaoxing, the ambassador of the PRC in the United States made an unofficial remark that "anyone would be OK other than Chen Shui-bian". Although it was believed that the PRC expected James Soong would win the election because he was a mainlander, the PRC government refrained from making official comments on it. However, the actions of the PRC government became hurried in January 2000 when it turned out that Chen Shui-bian, the candidate of the DPP, became hopeful. On February 21, 2000 the Taiwan Affairs Office of the PRC's State Council published a white paper entitled the "One China Principle and the Taiwan problem," which again expressed the "One China Principle" from the perspective of the Chinese side.
The paper was different from previous ones in that it showed a new condition in which armed intervention to Taiwan would be required. On top of the existing two conditions, i.e. "when a serious change that may result in the division of Taiwan from China occurred for some reason" and "when Taiwan is invaded by foreign armed forces," a new requirement was added, namely, "when the authorities of Taiwan indefinitely refuse the peaceful solution of the unification across the Strait through negotiations." The paper pointed out that when any of the conditions would occur, the PRC would take all possible measures including armed intervention to complete the great project of unification of China. The PRC government made it clear that it would not tolerate Taiwan delaying the solution of the Taiwan problem indefinitely. From the timing of its publication, the paper was interpreted as a threat against the Taiwanese electorates in an effort to influence the presidential election. 42
What was most explicit was the remark by Zhu Rongji, the PRC prime minister, immediately before the polling day. He stated high-handedly that the PRC government would never allow Taiwan to become independent, irrespective of the type of independence, and showed a clear standpoint that the PRC government would not allow Chen Shui-bian of the independence group to win the election. However, Chen Shui-bian's camp was not shaken by the pressure from the PRC and took a cool and resolute attitude, saying that the PRC had no right to speak about the election of Taiwan. The camp of James Soong clearly opposed the intervention of China, saying, "the people of Taiwan will not accept any armed threat," although they admitted that the relations between China and Taiwan would face a crisis if Chen Shui-bian should win the election. The camp of Lian Chan concentrated on the attack on Chen Shui-bian in line with China, insisting that war would break out if Chen Shui-bian won the election.
The reactions to the remark of Zhu Rongji were roughly divided into two types. In the northern half of Taiwan, although fear spread among the people, the votes for Chen Shui-bian were not damaged and votes for Lian Chan were moved to James Soong. In the southern half, people got angry at China and concentrated their votes on Chen Shui-bian. Lian Chan, who attacked Chen Shui-bian in line with China, received almost no floating votes. China intervened in the presidential election in 1996 in order to prevent Lee Teng-hui from being elected, but provoked backfire instead. China repeated the same mistake in the presidential election in 2000.

Taiwanese identity and nationalism

As stated above, Taiwan-China relations turned from detente to tension again in the period of Lee Teng-hui's presidency. Seeking to promote the Taiwanese identity, the Lee Teng-hui Administration delicately adjusted the policy towards China. In response the CCP took actions to countercheck the Taiwan's move, which re-kindled the anger of the people of Taiwan, and thereby repeated this cycle. Looking back over the 1990s, it turned out that "Eight Point" proposal by Jiang Zemin in 1995 and Lee Teng-hui's reaction to it (visit to the United States) were the critical moments for Taiwan-China relations. Since then, hawkish politicians gathered strength in the CCP and strengthened its "north wind" policy trying to have Taiwan to yield to China by pressure.
Practically speaking, Taiwan is an independent state in the name of the ROC. It has its own government and armed forces and holds its own presidential election. Yet despite its independence, the international community does not recognize Taiwan as a state. What Taiwan lacks is international recognition alone. However, Taiwan cannot get such recognition by its own declaration and actions. In this sense Taiwan did not achieved much by the visit to the United States and the theory of "special state-to-state relationship" by Lee Teng-hui, even though these actions helped consolidate the Taiwanese identity. Taiwan may not escape from the crunch unless the PRC changes its attitude towards Taiwan. Therefore, it is quite questionable whether the visit to the United States and theory of "special state-to-state relationship" by Lee Teng-hui were the best policies for Taiwan.
It would be possible to criticize Lee Teng-hui for promoting the "active diplomacy" to "risky diplomacy" in defiance of the frame of the "practical diplomacy". Lee's visit to the United States could be considered as a great breakthrough if it paved the way for subsequent visits. Actually, however, he could subsequently visit only Panama, Honduras, El Salvador, and Paraguay. It became difficult to visit even ASEAN countries to which he seemed to open a route in 1994. The visit to the United States in 1995 was a single event without continuity, and did not necessarily help break the diplomatic deadlock of Taiwan. Besides, since the visit was realized through approaching the Congress instead of the State Department, the relation between Taiwan and the State Department worsened. 43 The theory of "special state-to-state relationship" was also suppressed before it became widespread. President Clinton talked with Jiang Zemin on the phone and supported the "One China Principle" immediately after it was announced. To enlarge the international space for Taiwan, "practical diplomacy" based on low-profile activities to increase practical relations with other countries may have been more effective than eye-catching transient actions. Lee Teng-hui stated, "My job was to make an appeal of the existence of Taiwan". 44 If so, he could have visited Beijing to discuss the "One China Principle" to respond to the proposal by Jiang Zemin in 1995 under the world attention. If Lee Teng-hui had successfully insisted that China be democratized and had proposed a new concept of pluralistic China, it would have had an equal or higher impact on the world than the visit to the United States.
After Lee Teng-hui visited the United States and announced the theory of "special state-to-state relationship," the threshold for dialogue with China became higher than that was in 1995. Even if President Chen Shui-bian tried to visit China, the conditions imposed by China would become more difficult and the opposition in Taiwan could become stronger. Lee Kuan Yew of Singapore stated, "If President Lee Teng-hui had not proposed the theory of 'special state-to-state relationship' and had not taken his direction toward independence, Taiwan could have maintained the status quo longer. He shortened the fuse." 45 This means that Lee Teng-hui reduced the length of existence of Taiwan as a sovereign, independent entity by his "active diplomacy." This remark of Lee Kuan Yew who, as a Chinese, observed the conflict between the two Chinese parties from a distance, is full of implications.
Is it reasonable, then, to evaluate the "active diplomacy" symbolized by Lee's visit to the United States and his theory of "special state-to-state relationship" only in a negative manner? Is it reasonable to describe that the "active diplomacy" only worsened relations across the Strait? For internationally isolated Taiwan after the withdrawal from the United Nations and breaking off the relations with Japan, the United States and Korea, the "active diplomacy" of Lee Teng-hui can be positively rated as it broke through the old way of thinking in Taiwan that had been in place since the civil war between the KMT and CCP. It also helped break through the international fictitious structure of "One China" that had put the lid over the 20 million people of Taiwan. The policy raised an important question not only to China, but also to other countries such as Japan that behaved as if Taiwan did not exist in international politics.
It is also important to note that the "active diplomacy" corresponded with the great change in the political structure of Taiwan, or Taiwanization, and that it contributed to the formation of the mainstream sense of values in the Taiwanese society. The political change of democratization and Taiwanization became possible with the minimum confusion because the remarks and actions of Lee Teng-hui about the Taiwanese identity corresponded with the feeling of the majority of native Taiwanese. It was true that the President Lee's visit to the United States cleared discontent of Taiwanese that had mounted since the withdrawal from the United Nations and breaking relations with Japan and the United States. Even the supporters of the DPP that usually criticized the KMT supported the visit of Lee Teng-hui to the United States, saying, "We are proud of him. He presented the existence of Taiwan with dignity." 46 He stated in his speech at Cornell University, "I am always sensitive to what people want." His strong point was that he could completely share and express the hope of the majority of native Taiwanese to become masters of this island.
When the Taiwanese government and people became disappointed with China, Lee Teng-hui used emotional words to describe the leaders of the CCP such as "gangster" and "hardhead." Although such remarks were diplomatically unfavorable because it invited hostility from the leaders of the CCP, it could obtain the sympathy and support from many Taiwanese. Lee Teng-hui's words not only demonstrated that he was adamant but also revealed that he was really caring for Taiwan. Since he was deeply committed in Taiwan, he could not allow anyone to threaten the lives, properties and freedom of 20 million Taiwanese as the president of Taiwan. As the president of the ROC located in Taiwan, he thought that he had to take the responsibility of cherishing and protecting Taiwan.
However, his firm resolution resulted in tense relations with China. If the KMT government after Chiang Ching-kuo had suppressed Taiwanization, then, the tension would not have been caused. However, it would have made the domestic problem of ethnic discord more serious and increased the tension associated with democratization in Taiwanese society. The "active diplomacy" of Lee Teng-hui was a way to ride over the political change associated with the process of democratization and Taiwanization, while minimizing social division, and at the same time, it meant a safety valve to prevent the sudden explosion of the discontent and hard feelings of the majority of native Taiwanese towards the KMT and its regime. It also played an important role in obtaining international recognition of Taiwan and establishing a new consensus for the ROC on Taiwan.
President Lee talked about the sorrow of being born a Taiwanese. One of the sorrows that came from the ruling structure based on the ethnicity has almost been settled because the process of Taiwanization in the political structure was completed. However, the other sorrow that the Taiwanese are not allowed to express their own identity different from Mainland Chinese still remains. The Taiwanese identity gradually developed through the past 100 years. The CCP would never understand that the sense of sorrow deepens as China threatens Taiwan. In other words, the "sorrow" of Taiwan is that it is prevented from developing into a center of the Asia-Pacific region by the PRC that claims to be a brother of Taiwan.
Children in China learn Mandarin and the geography and history of China and acquire the identity as Chinese, irrespective of the provinces of the PRC. Children in Guangdong Province and Fujian Province in the same way learn Mandarin and the geography and history of China to develop their identity as Chinese. Since local people speak in local dialects and learn local history and geography to some extent, they may also have local identity, but Guangdong and Fujian provinces are provinces located in China, and such local identity just supplements the national identity of Chinese.
Similarly, the KMT government in Taiwan adopted the educational policy to teach children Mandarin and the geography and history of China to have them develop their identity as Chinese. The government considered Taiwan as one of the local regions of China and did not emphasize teaching the geography and history of Taiwan. However, the method to seek their identity from the lost "home" became unrealistic. The Chinese identity gradually faded in Taiwan, while the identity as Taiwanese was not established. This was different from the case of Chinese who emigrated to foreign countries. Emigrants often suffer from an identity conflict as being Chinese and citizens of the country of destination and have to seek how to reconcile with different identity. Even so, there exist two identities. By contrast, Taiwan was facing a crisis of losing the identity in the uncertain flow of time. Unlike emigrants, Taiwanese had no identity unless they created it by themselves. Taiwanese had to survive on a small island without natural resources, surrounded by harsh natural environment including typhoons and heavy rain that come every year. It would be natural for them to establish something spiritual upon which they could rely. Nevertheless, the PRC government so easily denied the presence of Taiwanese by saying "No one can change the fact that 'Taiwanese' is the minor concept under the major concept of 'Chinese'." 47 Even Lee Kuan Yew, who had difficulty in building the identity as a Singaporean for his country, does not seem to fully appreciate the difficulty and significance of forging the Taiwanese identity in Taiwan, which requires the peaceful coexistence among different ethnic groups.


In the 1990s, China and Taiwan exchanged their views, although in an unorthodox manner. The methods of exchanging views included not only official talks, but also remarks, white papers, and actions, such as the visit to the United States and launch of missiles. As a result, it turned out that what China wanted was different from what Taiwan wanted, and that the discussion between them did not help them understand each other, but instead, widened the gap between them. Taiwan-China relations entered a stage where desperate efforts are required to prevent them from resorting to force.
The policy towards China of Chen Shui-bian, the new president of Taiwan, is based on the sense of this crisis. He froze the theory of "special state-to-state relationship" in practice by announcing that the theory would not be included in the Constitution. He also abandoned the referendum about unification and independence, which he had long proposed to do. These decisions by the new president who had once insisted on the independence of Taiwan indicate a fact that Taiwan will not be able to escape from the "One China Principle" in the near future. The future of Taiwan should be considered by looking at the two factors that it is practically an independent state, and that it cannot act unilaterally (its sovereignty has been partially restricted by China). Being an independent state, Taiwan can develop its own educational and cultural policies and establish the Taiwanese identity as long as it survives. However, Taiwan always runs a risk of being invaded, as was the case in Czechoslovakia in 1968, if its government takes wrong measures.
What is necessary for Taiwan is to buy time. In the meantime Taiwan demands that China should be democratized. It is also necessary for Taiwan to widen the interpretation of the concept of sovereignty. There is a possibility that an ultra-nationalistic government may appear on the other side of the Strait even if the CCP regime collapses. If Taiwan adheres to the 20th century-type nation state and insists on nationalism, then Taiwan and China will come to insist on the same thing, which will lead to a war of nationalism. Lee Teng-hui was right when he separated the Taiwanese identity and nationalism.
What is necessary for China is to re-examine the plan to incorporate Taiwan with the "One country, two systems" concept. The relations between China and Taiwan can no longer be understood as an extension of the civil war between the CCP and the KMT. If the unification proposed by China comes true, "One country, two systems" will be applied and Taiwan will be given advanced autonomy as "Taiwan Special Administrative Region." However, Taiwan is not Hong Kong. The Taiwanese have acquired freedom and the right to elect the president after the long authoritarian rules of the "foreign" governments. Forcing Taiwan to become Taiwan Special Administrative Region is equal to forcing them to give up the Taiwanese identity.
Unless China widens the interpretation of the "One China Principle," it will force the ROC to get rid of the name of China, and Taiwan will try to separate from China. If China tries to forcibly incorporate Taiwan, then it will eventually result in armed conflict, which will severely damage China too. China now has to find a clever way not to drive Taiwanese to anti-China. The majority of Taiwanese want both to establish the Taiwanese identity and to improve relations with China. Few people support the immediate declaration of the Republic of Taiwan that may trigger the war on the Taiwan Strait. The Taiwanese are self-restraining. The emphasis on the Taiwanese identity does not necessarily mean hostility to China. In the future, China and Taiwan will widen the concept of the conventional sovereign state while continuing irregular talks, and pursue various possibilities, such as state alliance.

1 Liu Wenzong, "Discussion of Sovereignty and the Legal Position of Taiwan", Taiwanese Studies, (Institute of Taiwan Studies, Chinese Academy of Social Science), 3rd issue,1999, p.41.
2 Masahiro Wakabayashi, Taiwan - Divided country and democratization, Tokyo University Press, p.181.
3 Jay Taylor, The Generalissimo's Son, Harvard University Press, 2000, p.383.
4 Chang Hui-ing, Lee Teng-hui 1988-2000, Tianxia, Taipei, 2000, p.249.
5 Since this was a very delicate problem, the following item was included in the "State Unification Prospectus": "the rights of the people in Taiwan region should be respected and their safety and welfare maintained in the unification of China." When the prospectus was reported in the Central Standing Committee of the KMT, some members requested to replace the "rights of the people in Taiwan region" with the "rights of the people on both sides of the strait". But the original one was adopted based on the decision by Lee Teng-hui. (Wang Mingyi, Uncertain Strait, China Times Press, Taipei,1993, pp.183-186)
6 Wang Mingyi, op.cit., pp.186-187.
7 Xu Shiquan, The Consensus in 1992, Institute of Taiwan Studies, Chinese Academy of Social Science, October 2000.
8 Press conference of TSAI Ing-wen, a principal member of the Mainland Committee of the Executive Yuan on June 28, 2000 (http://www.mac.gov.tw/mipolicy/ts0628/.htm).
9 Xu Shiquan, op.cit., p.14.
10 Conclusion of the National Unification Council on August 1, 1992.
11 Former presidents went abroad only twice.
12 Chang Hui-ing, op.cit., p.165,
13 Gao Lang, The Changes of Foreign Relations of the ROC, Wunan, Taipei, 1994, p.230.
14 United Daily News on October 13, 1995.
15 People's Daily on August 19, 1994.
16 Shaw Chong Hai, "Considerations on 'One China Principle'", Journal of National Chenchi University, vol.78, June 1999 pp.514-515.
17 Ryotaro Shiba, Travel in Taiwan, Asahi Newspaper Press 1994, p.489.
18 http://www.mac.gov.tw/mlpolicy/mlp2.htm
19 Taiwan Communication, May 26, 1994.
20Taiwan Communication, April 14, 1994.
21 United Daily News, July 4, 1997.
22 Shaw Chong Hai, op.cit., p.520.
23 Guo Zheng Liang, "Political Logics of Three Exchanges on the Strait", Journal of Soochou University, vol.10, 1999, p.71.
24 Gongshangshibao, August 16, 1996.
25 Shaw Chong Hai, op.cit., p.525.
26 Remarks to the unification group.
27 Shaw Chong Hai, op.cit., pp.521-24.
28 Mainichi Newspaper, July 1, 1998
29 Chas W. Freeman Jr., "Preventing war in the Taiwan Strait: Restraining Taiwan and Beijing", Foreign Affairs, Jul/Aug1998.
30 Mainichi Newspaper, July 23, 1998.
31 Jingjiribao, June 29, 1999.
32 Taiwan Communication, July 22, 1999.
33 Lee Teng-hui and Mineo Nakajima, Asian Strategy, Kobunsha Press, 2000, pp.48-50.
34 The China Times, May 23, 1997.
35 It was held in November 1998. The China Times, November 8, 1998.
36 United Daily News, November 10, 1997
37 People's Daily, July 19, 1999
38 United Daily News, July 26, 1999
39 The Liberty Times, September 24, 1999
40 United Daily News, September 25, 1999
41 Ibid.
42 The China Times, February 22, 2000.
43 Chang Hui-ing, op.cit., pp.131-6.
44 Lee Teng-hui and Mineo Nakajima, op.cit., p.54.
45 The China Times, October 17, 2000.
46 Taiwan Communication, September 21, 1995
47 People's Daily, August 21, 1999

* The author thanks Tongdefangyichuban, a publisher of Weekly Taiwan Communication in Taipei, for providing the newspapers cuttings in Taiwan.