China’s Peace Doves for the Global Security Initiative: General Milley and KMT-Ma Yingjiu
The CCP has discovered two peace doves of, one in the US and one in Taiwan, which it hypes in its propaganda. On the one hand, the Chief of Joint Staff Mark Milley, whom the Global Times describes as a dove, as well as the former Taiwanese President ( KMT) Ma Yingjiu, who is on a 12-day trip to China particpating in the joint Qingming ancestor commemoration celebrations and its martyr cult as a counterpoint and is solemnly praised by the Chinese Communist at the same time as the current Taiwanese President Tsai Ying from the DDP visits the USA . The Taipei Times also writes that Tsai, DDP and Ma/KMT formed two different poles through their visits: the Taiwanese-democratic-peaceful in direction towards the USA versus the ethnic-Chinese-nationalist-authoritarian-Hanchauvinist-imperial direction towards CCP and Greater China . But first what the Global Times writes about the peace dove Joint Chief of Staff Milley:
“US military is becoming a dove, as career soldiers know real American capabilities
By Global Times Published: Apr 03, 2023 08:40 PM
US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman General Mark Milley Photo: AFP
As US armchair politicians and analysts are hyping up a possible war, true American warriors are calling for peace. Everyone needs to calm down about war with China, top US general Mark Milley said on Friday in an interview with Defense One. On Monday, Taipei Times published a front-page story featuring Milley’s rhetoric.
According to Defense One, the China heat is on following this year’s Chinese balloon saga. In the past few weeks, members of Congress in hearings aimed a list of concerns about China – everything from nuclear weapons to computer chips, „invading“ Taiwan, and allying with Russia – at Milley and Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. „Milley has taken to telling lawmakers that war with China – and Russia – is not imminent or inevitable. It’s part of an effort to lower the heat,“ Defense One reported, citing Milley and adding that Milley stressed a more realistic and less emotional approach is needed when dealing with China-US ties.
Milley clearly recognizes the predicament the US faces amid US politicians and media’s excessive hype of tensions with China. To some extent, he was saying that something has gone wrong in the US‘ China policy, and the problem is mainly on the US side.
As a career soldier, Milley realizes when the US displays overly hawkish hostility against China, it goes far beyond the actual needs of American national interests. Thus, he made his point – the US military should not be dragged into a war with China for hysterical reasons, in other words, for the constant hype of unreasonable tensions, Shen Yi, a professor at Fudan University, told the Global Times.
Taiwan regional leader Tsai Ing-wen is on a visit to Central America with a planned stop-by in California and a scheduled meeting with Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy. US officers, think tanks, and media have been sparing no effort to stir up troubles about the Taiwan question long before the trip. They either constantly make speculations on the timetable of a possible cross-Straits war, or simulate war games on the possible American cost of such a conflict.
When American elites who have never fought in a war are obsessed with talking out loud about a military showdown, Milley remains sober. He is well aware that it is not journalists nor politicians who will have to fight on the front lines. And he knows it is not in the US‘ interest to actually fight a war against China. For a career military personnel, it is more important to boost deterrence than actually joining a hot war.
More importantly, it is completely unrealistic for the US to confront both China and Russia militarily simultaneously. Milley is aware of the strength of American military power; thus, he knows that Washington should not provoke Beijing and Moscow at the same time. Otherwise, the US will simply wreck its capability to seek absolute military hegemony worldwide, Song Zhongping, a Chinese military expert and TV commentator, told the Global Times.
Milley’s argument is objective and calculative. After calling for a cooling down of tensions, he said that he prefers the „speak softly, carry a big stick“ tactic – lowering the rhetoric a little bit while making sure the US has an incredibly powerful military that is capable. And he agrees with calls for the US to send arms to Taiwan island as quickly as possible.
It means that despite the fact that the US still has a clear military advantage, such an advantage is no longer overwhelming. Hence Milley believes a military means is not an option before it has a sufficient advantage in the armed forces.
That’s the reason for ceaseless US arms sales to the Taiwan island – the US is not preparing to fight China; it is preparing Taiwan island to fight the Chinese mainland. The US won’t willingly sacrifice itself to help Taiwan secessionist forces, but it is willing to fight a proxy war, using the Taiwan island as a consumable or a pawn.
The US still remains the most powerful country on the globe, but its toxic political environment has been eroding its strength since the end of the Cold War. The toxic environment is what drives Milley’s concerns on whether the US‘ might can be long-lasting.
China’s development and the US‘ decline are not directly related. And the current era is no longer one in which one country can play a dominant role with purely military power. Benign competition can help both China and the US develop. If China becomes strong enough one day, it will be grateful to both its friends and strong competitors, including the US, Song said.
The US is too anxious and hysterical, because it has lost its way and is on the wrong path.“
Interesting that Milley is able to hold his position despite all the Russiahawks and Chinahawks. But it is possible that many do not want new neocon adventures and that parts of the administration and the security apparatus are now thinking the same way and some think that in the medium and long term if there will be no gamer changers in the Ukraine war, political will and Ukraine solidarity will erode and the depletion of their own armaments stocks, further conflicts, above all in the Asian Pivot and China, will result in Milley’s Korea solution in the Ukraine, whereby Milley could calculate that without Donbass and Crimea, Odessa remains Ukrainian and that the Azov and Black Seas remain international waters. He could also hope for approval from Erdogan in NATO, since the Neo Ottomanian sultane doesn’t want the Black Sea to become a Russian sea either.
This is also indicated by two messages from a former German diplomat and ambassador to Global Review, which are also circulating in Berlin diplomatic circles and across the great pond:
„Dear friends and colleagues,
please find below an article on Washington D.C.’s current concerns which will probably increase during the next 12 months.
FYI The veteran journalist Julia Ioffe recaps conversations with a range of Washington foreign policy insiders, including some inside the Administration. She underlines that the insiders‘ on the record comments don’t align with their private ones. While they praise President Biden’s response to the Ukrainian crisis, they also criticize him for lack of a specific strategy. She asks all the important questions about what the U.S. will do going forward, makes clear that U.S. policy options rest hugely on the success or failure of Ukraine’s coming spring/summer offensive and reports that there is a general sentiment across party lines that Washington expects stalemate and greater pressure to push Kyiv to negotiate on the basis of the frontlines. A raw account in many respects but probably an accurate portrayal of thinking among the Washington foreign policy establishment.
Biden’s Private Ukraine Deadline The D.C. foreign policy establishment is growing restless as the Biden White House resists calls to articulate a more specific strategy if Ukraine fails to make significant gains by the fall.
JULIA IOFFE JULIA IOFFE
Since the beginning of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the White House has held regular calls with prominent people in the Washington foreign policy establishment, trying to keep the heads of think tanks and prominent experts apprised of what the administration is thinking and planning in countering Moscow. The goal of the regular calls has been to inform, persuade, and shape the analysis produced by this town’s foreign policy elite. Everyone I spoke to who participated in these White House briefing calls was vociferous in praising the Biden administration’s policy on Ukraine. They wanted to give the president and his advisors credit for this and credit for that. They really had done a terrific job, everyone said, of saving Ukraine and acting nimbly in a rapidly evolving, predictably unpredictable conflict. But as soon as we went off the record or spoke on background, the truth flowed like a mighty river. It turns out that Washington’s foreign policy set has grown increasingly frustrated with the Biden administration’s Ukraine policy. What is it, exactly? On one hand, the administration has been consistent in its line on Ukraine: Ukraine must win, nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine, this must not turn into World War III, and we must defend and strengthen the rules-based (and American-designed) international order. But what does any of that really mean? What does winning in Ukraine even look like? Do we agree with Ukraine that it means restoring its 1991 borders? If we advocate for “nothing about Ukraine without Ukraine,” then what did it mean when Antony Blinken—just “Tony” to the community—told a group of experts that Crimea was Putin’s red line, and therefore America’s as well? Does our concept of victory actually diverge from the Ukrainians‘ vision? And what does “as long as it takes” mean in the context of providing Ukraine with more sensitive weapons systems, like ATACMS, or dwindling weapons stocks in the U.S. and Europe? How “all in” are we? „If they have a strategy, it hasn’t been shared,“ one expert on these regular briefing calls with administration officials complained. In recent weeks, however, it seems that at least part of the policy has become a bit less gauzy. It can be articulated, essentially, as this: Let’s wait and see how Ukraine’s spring counter-offensive goes, and then we’ll reassess. The Reassessment My sources in the administration stress that Ukraine now has everything it needs for a successful push to regain territory, most likely in the southeast, where Ukraine hopes to cut Russia’s land bridge to Crimea. Since the beginning of the year, I have heard from State and White House officials that Ukraine is not economically viable without Zaporizhzhya. If Kyiv doesn’t wrest back control of this province, which Russia has illegally annexed, Moscow can maintain its strangehold on the Ukrainian economy by blockading its ports and cutting off Ukraine’s exports. Using these ports, Ukraine used to feed 400 million people a year. Since the outbreak of the war, the agricultural industry has taken a severe hit and Ukraine lost one-third of its G.D.P. Depending on how the offensive goes for Ukraine, the administration has hinted that it will reassess and recalibrate its policy. But what does that look like? “The White House has certainly said things like we need to do everything now, do whatever we can now to make this big push,” said a second participant in the calls. „And everyone is like, ‚What’s next?'“ „I think the administration’s expectation has been that Ukraine has everything it needs for an offensive and if they don’t get anything done, well, then we’ll have to reassess,“ the first participant told me. „What that reassessment means, it’s not clear to me. Does that mean hold our levels of support steady? Does it mean we escalate [our levels of support]? Or does it mean that we start having a conversation about how do we freeze things?” Added this participant, „It’s not clear which one they’re thinking of. Escalation of support is very unlikely, so it’s probably the first or third options.“ Still another participant in the calls reflected another frustration: Are we giving Ukrainians enough to win? Or does winning simply mean as much as Ukraine can claw back with the current levels of support and during this very finite window of opportunity? It seemed, this third participant told me, that at this point a Ukrainian victory just means “Whatever Ukraine can muster. And then… what?“ this participant wondered. „I’m assuming it means taking it to a negotiating table, but that’s assuming that Russia will come to the negotiating table and that Ukraine will come to the negotiating table.“
„I think we have a policy until late summer/early fall and then it’ll get caught in our political process, at which point we’ll say, ‚Well, we tried. We helped them as much as we could,’” this participant added. „I don’t think there’s a strategy beyond the $95 billion aid package, which runs out at the end of the fiscal year [in the fall]. And then I don’t know what. I don’t think they will go to the Hill again in the fall to ask for more. If the Ukrainians are wildly successful, that may help. But if we are largely where we are now, if Ukraine makes some gains but it’s still basically what it is today, I don’t know what the administration does in the fall.“ To be clear, pretty much no one expects the Ukrainian offensive to result in a decisive victory. All of Washington that is paid to think about this war is now feverishly gaming out possible scenarios, both in cocktail party conversation and in more formal tabletop exercises. I recently attended such an exercise, and there, like everywhere, all roads seemed to lead to stalemate and some kind of negotiated solution in the long run, regardless of how well the spring offensive goes this year. It’s as if when Chairman Mark Milley went rogue back in November to say that this wasn’t settled on the battlefield but at the negotiating table, he wasn’t speaking out of school but reflecting a nascent Washington consensus. „I think they want this to happen this year,“ the first participant of the White House calls told me of the beginning of a negotiated solution. „We have elections next year and we’re in campaign season already. Ukraine might take back some territory but it won’t be a massive territorial takeback. I think that’s where we’ll be at the end of the year. They’re going to want to hold the line and Congress will support them on that.“
Stalling for Time
Dmitri Alperovitch, who heads Silverado, a D.C.-based think tank, told me he’s been hearing from elected American officials across the political spectrum that the questions from their constituents about why the U.S. is spending so much money in Ukraine have been coming more frequently. „It’s not just Republicans, it’s also Democrats saying that big aid packages to Ukraine are not going to get support from their constituents,“ Alperovitch said. “These are not left-wing or right-wing politicians. These are moderates.” He was blunt about the likely outcome. „This offensive, if Ukraine makes progress, they’ll buy themselves some life. If they don’t, it’ll be hard to get supplies to keep going.“ However, another person familiar with the administration’s thinking and who has participated in some of these calls, was adamant that the White House has no intention of stopping aid to Ukraine. Another participant told me the White House made clear on a call one month ago with the N.S.C.’s new Russia senior director Nicholas Berliner that they would go to Congress for more aid in the fall, regardless of the offensive’s outcome. The question is how much they’ll ask for—and how much they’ll get. That will be part of the fall reassessment. „It’s not that the U.S. will stop supporting Ukraine,” said the person familiar with the administration’s thinking. „It’s that the U.S. and other Western countries may not be able to give Ukraine a decisive advantage on the battlefield. That’s the issue. The US is committed to supporting Ukraine, but it can’t commit things it does not have. At a certain point Washington will have to reassess, including the balance between the U.S. and Europeans.” Still, this gap between official Biden administration rhetoric has been worrying Ukrainians, who are telegraphing that they are concerned that this plays right into Putin’s plan: wait out the fuckle Americans, without whom the Europeans are as good as useless, and then grind the Ukrainians down. “Ukrainians have been asking if the U.S. intends to press Ukraine into some kind of negotiated settlement,” said the person familiar with the administration’s thinking. “My sense is the U.S. doesn’t want a false stalemate. The game plan is to provide Ukraine a window of opportunity but assume the war ends up as a natural stalemate. Then, seek negotiations or a frozen conflict.” That’s not good enough even for some of the administration’s public allies, who, in our conversations, consistently called out the gap between what Biden and his advisors were saying publicly and what they were planning for in private. „We rhetorically say something and then we revert to incrementalism,“ one participant in the calls told me after dutifully praising the president. „That’s a bipartisan comment, by the way. We engage in this really high rhetoric and we just hope no one’s going to call us on it. But we’re going to get called on this one. We’re not playing for success, we’re playing for stalemate—and stalemate is not going to be successful for us.“
The former German diplomat and ambassador comes to the following conclusion:
“In my opinion, Western solidarity with UKR, which is held up to the outside world, is much weaker. than we think: in Washington’s foreign policy elite, enthusiasm for war is decreasing in view of the forthcoming elections in 2024, the population is generally war-weary after Iraq, Afghanistan, etc. Even former West Pointers, who led their troops or battalions twice in Kandahar, retreat to the solitude of Arizona or Colorada, let their wives work as doctors or teachers and take care of the children themselves. So Annalena and EU-Uschi have to be extremely careful not to be alone on the Ukrainian battlefields looking at the cameras in twelve months. Seriously: the situation continues to escalate and European politics, without a leader, is falling into an ever-increasing crisis.”
It will also be important how the court trail against Trump will affect it and whether or not there will be a new Taiwan crisis. The assessments could not be more different. The head of Republicans Abroad in Germany indicated that the trial could likely cause several Republicans if cross red lines on the charges were crossed they wiöö distance themselves from Trump. On issues related to aid to Ukraine, he said there was 80% bipartisan approval in the US Congress, including in the crucial Senate, and no new president could afford to simply veto and scrap it. He himself was not a Trumpeter and Desantis was also as dangerous as Trump, not a Trump with brain, but a jovial Trump. Diametrically opposed is investment business strategist and US expert Sandra Navidi, who said Trump would use the trial as a perfect propaganda forum. Now Trump will be during the whole election campaign once again become the center and focus of attention in the media while the other Republican candidates are at the backyard of the media and will be ignored, the ranks behind Trump would close by means of solidarity effects and DeSantis would have no chance against him.
In this environment, Chief of Staff Milley, in the perspective of the possible erosion of Ukrainian solidarity, the lack of a game changer in the Ukraine war so far, unclear political will, concerns about escalation, also towards China and Taiwan in the Indo-Pacific or fear is seen by a number of Western, but also Chinese experts and commentators, as a realistic anti-neocon who correctly assesses the balance of power, who advocates a middle course, de-escalates, is not hot-blooded and impulsive and is also committed to the US constitution, i.e. also a constitutional patriot and democrat.
The CCP in particular maybe was aslo delighted with the following story, which if it happened like described and is not a scribbled posthumous historical spoof, is really remarkable, and could also be seen by Trumpists and neocons as Milley´s state treason and insubordination.
Bob Woodward’s book „Peril“ reports how US Chief of Staff Mark Milley had restricted Donald Trump’s access to nuclear weapons. As the Washington Post and the broadcaster CNN reported on Tuesday (September 14, 2021), citing the book by the renowned investigative journalist Bob Woodward and his co-author Robert Costa, Milley contacted his Chinese colleague Li Zuocheng and instructed the responsible commanders not to carry out any nuclear attack order given by the then president without consulting him. Woodward and Costa write in their book „Peril“ that Milley was „certain that post-election Trump had fallen into a serious mental decline, with Trump now acting almost maniacally, yelling at officials and obsessing over his own alternate reality.“ lived out endlessly constructed electoral conspiracies“. According to the reports, the authors also say that Milley called Chinese General Li Zuocheng twice. In a first conversation on October 30, a few days before the US presidential election, which Joe Biden won, he told Li: „General Li, I want to assure you that the US government is stable and everything is fine. (…) We will not attack you or start any warlike operations against you.“
Two months later, after Trump supporters stormed the US Capitol, Milley reportedly called Li again. “We are one hundred percent stable. Everything is fine,” he is said to have said to his Chinese colleague. To convince Beijing, Milley even had a US military exercise postponed. In addition, according to the book, the chief of staff ordered his relevant commanders to first inform him if Trump intended to use his power to order a nuclear strike. Milley is said to have coordinated with the heads of the CIA and NSA secret services out of concern for possible irrational actions by Trump. Milley’s fear was based on his own observations of Trump’s erratic behavior. His concerns were compounded by the events of January 6 with the storming of the Capitol in Washington and the „extraordinary risk“ of the situation to US national security, the authors write.
The authors of the book also reportedly had a transcript of a phone call between Milley and US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi. „You know he’s crazy,“ the Congresswoman reportedly told Milley two days after the storming of the US Capitol. „If they couldn’t even stop him from attacking the Capitol, who knows what else he could do?“ According to the transcript, Milley replied that he „agreed with her on every point.“ The Pentagon has so far declined to comment.
General Milley is quite an interesting character. He doesn’t see Russia as the main enemy, doesn’t believe that China will attack Taiwan in the near future, thinks fighting IS with the Taliban is possible, and spoke out against military action inside the USA and has apparently curtailed Trump’s nuclear powers as well. The deep state once in a positive and war-preventing role. Which in the case of Trump is good news. But the question remains as to how many Trump supporters there are in the US military, the 17 secret services and the police. But in the end everything still depends on what the US President and the White House including the US Congress think and order.
In addition, General Staff MIlley accepted Biden’s election victory and issued a statement with other active generals that the US military should serve the constitution and not a person, which was understood as opposition to Trump, especially since Trump also thought about declaring a state of emergency and martial law and using the US military internally and in the homeland , a proposal which Milley and other generals resisted.
In a historic step, the US military leadership committed itself to democracy and all of the constitutional processes in response to the events in the Capitol and other possible obstacles to the inaugration of Joe Biden in 2021. Here the document:
“The American people have trusted the Armed Forces of the United States to protect them and our Constitution for almost 250 years. As we have done throughout our history, the U.S. military will obey lawful orders from civilian leadership, support civil authorities to protect lives and property, ensure public safety in accordance with the law, and remain fully committed to protecting and defending the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.
The violent riot in Washington, D.C. on January 6, 2021 was a direct assault on the U.S. Congress, the Capitol building, and our Constitutional process. We mourn the deaths of the two Capitol policemen and others connected to these unprecedented events.
We witnessed actions inside the Capitol building that were inconsistent with the rule oflaw. The rights of freedom of speech and assembly do not give anyone the right to resort to violence, sedition and insurrection.
As Service Members, we must embody the values and ideals of the Nation. We support and defend the Constitution. Any act to disrupt the Constitutional process is not only against our traditions, values, and oath; it is against the law.
On January 20, 2021, in accordance with the Constitution, confirmed by the states and the courts, and certified by Congress, President-elect Biden will be inaugurated and will become our 46th Commander in Chief.
To our men and women deployed and at home, safeguarding our country-stay ready, keep your eyes on the horizon, and remain focused on the mission. We honor your continued service in defense of every American.”
Indirectly, this may also have been a sign against Trump, for example when the generals write that they will defend the United States Constitution against all enemies, “foreign and domestic”. It is very unusual for the American military to be so specific about domestic affairs. The document bears the handwriting of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General Mark A. Milley, crystal clear and unambiguously worded, and closely aligned with the constitution and the mandate of the armed forces. The document was signed alongside General Milley by General John. E. Hyten, Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; General James C. McConville, Chief of Staff of the Army; General David H. Berger, Commandant of the Marine Corps; Admiral Michael M. Gilday, Chief of Naval Operations; General Charles Q. Brown Jr., Chief of Staff of the Air Force; General John. W. Raymond, Chief of Space Operations; and General Daniel R. Hokanson, Chief of the National Guard Bureau. It is noteworthy that the entire military leadership, but not the civil or political leadership, signed the document. However, there may have been agreements here beforehand. Incidentally, the document is not only aimed at active personnel in the armed forces, but also at veterans and reservists, with it likely reaching hundreds of thousands of U.S. Citizens who have served their country on missions. And who often listen to what comes out of the leadership of the military.“
Even if Milley is not the leading and decisive figure, he still expresses what many in the security establishment think behind closed doors, especially since he becomes an appeal instance because he advocates de-escalation in China and Russia, yes, he even advocates a Korean solution in the Ukraine war. From the point of view of the Chinese Communist Party, this makes him an exemplary peace dove against the Chinahawks. This is why the Global Times prases him, the DDP-affiliated newspaper, The Taipei Times perceives him negatively, while the KMT also hypes him. Vad/ Wagenknecht/Schwarzer/ Varwick /Alt/Vollmer also constantly invoke him to support their own position with his authority.
The second peace dove praised by the CCP is Ma Yingjiu, who has become the first former Taiwanese president to tour China . In addition to commemorating ancestors in his birthplace in Hunan, Ma rattled through 12 major Chinese cities with the exception of Beijing. Of course these are not tourist sightseeing tours.12 days is already quite extensive and the CP proudly notes that he is the first Taiwanese President to visit the mainland in 74 years.
“KMT former chairperson Ma Ying-jeou pays tribute to ancestors, commemorates grandfather at ancestral home
By Global Times Published: Apr 01, 2023 04:33 PM
Amid warm greetings from local villagers, former chairperson of the Chinese Kuomintang (KMT) Ma Ying-jeou and his family members returned to the burial site of ancestors and commemorated his grandfather in Shuangyang village of Xiangtan county in Central China’s Hunan Province on Saturday.
While reading the oration for his ancestors in local dialect, Ma, choking with sobs and said his dream of coming to pay tribute to ancestors came true. He was also deeply touched to see the grave of his grandfather who he had never met.
Respecting funeral rites to commemorate the ancestors is an important part of Chinese people’s education of morality, Ma told the media after the ceremony.
Ma and his family members had received warm greetings from local villagers and Ma also responded in local dialect.
Before arriving at his hometown in Hunan, Ma and his delegation had visited several mainland cities, including Nanjing, Wuhan and Changsha. He will later go to Chongqing and Shanghai before returning to the island of Taiwan on April 7.
Song Tao, head of both the Taiwan Work Office of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the Taiwan Affairs Office of the State Council, met with Ma in Wuhan, Hubei Province on Thursday.
Song welcomed Ma and several Taiwan compatriots to visit the mainland for more exchanges in the future, and affirming Ma’s contribution to the peaceful development of cross-Straits relations.
Observers said that Ma’s trip to the mainland makes him the first former Taiwan leader to visit the mainland in 74 years, which is expected to write a new chapter in the development of cross-Straits relations.“
Ma now in Chongqing. The united front between the KMT and the CCP against Japan is now highlighted. In addition to entrepreneurs, he also took many young academics with him. And sees great prospects for China’s 34 million city of Chongqing with Taiwan. A patriotic role model from the point of view of the CCP. Accordingly, the Global Times reports in great detail about almost every stop on his trip, especially now about his stay in Chongqing: The united front against Japan at the time is now being highlighted.
Ma Ying-jeou expresses high expectations for cross-Straits exchanges while meeting with mainland officials in Chongqing
By Wang Qi
Published: Apr 03, 2023 10:56 PM
Former chairperson of the Chinese Kuomintang (KMT) party Ma Ying-jeou visits the Chongqing Urban Planning Exhibition Hall in Southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality on April 3, 2023. Photo: VCG
Former chairperson of the Chinese Kuomintang (KMT) party Ma Ying-jeou on Monday expressed high expectations for exchanges and cooperation between Taiwan island and Chongqing Municipality while meeting with mainland officials, as his 12-day ancestral trip in the Chinese mainland entered its fourth major city.
During the meeting with Yuan Jiajun, secretary of the Chongqing Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC), Ma said that the modernization of Chongqing is an important factor for attracting Taiwan businesspeople and enterprises to settle down for development and investment and for cross-Straits exchanges.
In the future, Taiwan and Chongqing will have more possibilities for deepening cooperation in new energy, electronic information industry and other fields, Ma said.
Ma left Changsha, Hunan Province and flew to Chongqing on Monday morning. He visited the Chongqing Urban Planning Exhibition Hall and the Three Gorges Museum before meeting with Yuan in the evening. Ma said the visit to the exhibition hall was „quite impressive,“ as his experience as mayor of Taipei taught him how difficult it is to govern a city.
Yuan expressed a warm welcome to Ma’s visit on behalf of the 34 million Chongqing residents. He said it was a great pleasure to meet Ma and his delegation in Chongqing in the warm spring and blooming season, „especially, in an important city that witnessed cooperation between the KMT and the CPC [against Japanese invaders], as well as the intensive economic, trade, cultural and people-to-people exchanges between the mainland and Taiwan.“
Yuan told Ma that he was touched by Ma’s repeated emphasis on adhering to the 1992 Consensus, opposing „Taiwan independence,“ and promoting cross-Straits exchanges and cooperation for win-win development, which is completely consistent with Ma’s long-term experience of promoting cross-Straits opening, exchanges, cooperation and development.
Ma said Chongqing meant a lot to him as his parents had completed their university education there during the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression (1931-45). Tales of heroism against invaders had been the subject of his bedside stories since childhood, according to Ma.
Ma said he will visit a local museum themed on the war against Japanese invaders on Tuesday with Taiwan students, as „it’s an important site and a shared memory in our Chinese history, and I believe it’s also an important process of reconnecting the two sides of the Straits for young people.“
Yuan said he noted that Ma’s delegation was made up of college students, master’s students and doctoral students, emphasizing that „they are the hope of the future development of our country.“
Ma told Yuan that the exchange activities in Wuhan and Changsha between students from both sides of the Taiwan Straits have been successful, and both sides have the responsibility of keeping such exchanges going and even expanding them into trade, culture and society. „I have very high expectations for the future.“
During Ma’s eight years as Taiwan’s regional leader (2008-2016), the two sides held 11 high-level talks and signed 23 agreements in fields ranging from economy and tourism to flights, including the Economic Cooperation Framework Agreement (ECFA), the most significant free trade agreement signed by both sides of Taiwan Straits in Chongqing in 2010.
Zhang Wensheng, deputy dean of the Taiwan Research Institute at Xiamen University, told the Global Times on Monday that Chongqing, as the provisional wartime capital of the Nationalist government, was home to many KMT memories. In addition, Chongqing, whose economy has been growing steadily in recent years, has become a popular destination for Taiwan investment, as labor and land costs have risen in the mainland’s eastern cities.
After Ma’s visit, young people and businesspeople from Taiwan will pay more attention to Chongqing, and consider it as an option for their work, study and life in the mainland, Zhang said.
There is a close historical connection between Chongqing and Taiwan, and the economic, social and cultural cooperation between the two regions has reached a new stage, said Zhang, noting that Chongqing is playing an increasingly important role in cross-Straits relations.
Sinology professor at the LMU and China expert Professor van Ess said sweetly:
„Close cooperation between Chongqing and Taiwan! I would be interested to know if you can see Chiang Kaishek in the museum now. A few years ago it was a big void.”
The absolute highlight would be if a statue of Chiang was placed in the museum and if his grandson and current mayor of Taipei would travel with or without Ma to Chongqing. But maybe Nanjing and the less historically contaminated Sun Yatsen Maosuleum will do too. Therefore, Ma„s present option was to visit the tomb of the KMT general and „national hero“ Zhang Zihongg, „martyr“ in the anti-Japanese united front His descendant accompanying Ma:
Ma Ying-jeou pays tribute to natl hero against Japanese invasion in Chongqing, lays wreath, observes silence, bows and sheds tears
in Beijing and Wu Wei in Chongqing Published: Apr 04, 2023 02:09 PM Updated: Apr 04, 2023 03:39 PM
· · · ·
Former chairperson of the Chinese Kuomintang (KMT) party Ma Ying-jeou on Tuesday paid a visit to the tomb of KMT general Zhang Zizhong in Southwest China’s Chongqing Municipality. Paying respects to a national hero who died for the country in War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression, Ma could not hide his emotions and choked up several times, wiping away his tears.
General Zhang Zizhong, commander of the 33rd Army Group, was killed during the battle on May 16, 1940. Zhang was the highest-ranked officer killed during the war against Japanese aggression, which lasted from 1937 to 1945. There are roads named after him in Beijing, Shanghai and Tianjin in memorizing the national hero.
Accompanied by Zhang’s grandson Zhang Qingcheng, Ma and his delegation continued to trace the historical memories of the war against Japanese aggression between Chinese people on both sides of the Taiwan Straits in Chongqing, the provisional wartime capital of the Nationalist government.
In the memorial Hall of General Zhang Zizhong, Chinese calligraphy from late Chairman Mao Zedong „Serve the country with loyalty“ is displayed.
After visiting the indoor exhibition which showcases Zhang’s heroic and patriotic experiences, Ma went outdoors and laid wreath at Zhang Zizhong’s tomb, bowed to pay respects and observed a minute of silence. He took out a handkerchief from his pocket to wipe away tears.
In addition to the original protocol of three bows, Ma paid another three bows, highlighting the contribution of general Zhang to Chinese nation and his weight in Ma’s mind.
After paying tribute to general Zhang, Ma left his signature on a bookmark and gave it to grandson Zhang Qingcheng.
„General Zhang suffered a lot,“ Ma said, choking up as he talked to Zhang Qingcheng. „He died a great martyr.“
When asked about why the group visited so many historic sites related to the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression during Ma’s mainland visits, Hsiao Hsu-tsen, the Director of Ma Ying-jeou Foundation told the Global Times that Ma had always attached great importance to that period of history. „He believes that our ancestors paid so much blood and laid down their lives for our people, and our later generations should not forget it.“
Taiwan students were deeply touched, because of DPP policy, they could not see this history, but after visiting mainland with Ma, they received info that they never received, they are more reflective to real history, and memories of these past heroes and martyrs, Hsiao said.
Chinese suffered much humiliation during the War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression. General Zhang Zizhong showed Chinese national character in preserving and protecting our homeland, a student from Taiwan surnamed Zhan, a member of Ma’s delegation, told the Global Times on Tuesday.
Ma is also expected to visit the historical site of a university in which his parents had completed their university education during the war.
Tales of heroism against invaders had been the subject of his bedside stories since childhood, Ma said during talk with Yuan Jiajun, secretary of the Chongqing Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China (CPC) on Monday.
Ma told Yuan that visiting historical sites related to anti-Japanese invasion is an important process of reconnecting the two sides of the Straits for young people with shared memories of Chinese people.
Of course, Ma Yingkiu is not alone in China with his KMT general as a “martyr”, moreover, all of this is embedded in a fanatical martyr cult for the Qingmin festival and the CCP mobilizes the nation and young people to the memorials for the “revolutionary martyrs“ and pay salute to the national heroes.
„Memorial activity paying tribute to revolutionary martyrs kicks off in Beijing
By Li Hao, Published: 2023/4/4 15:02:58
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Memorial activity paying tribute to revolutionary martyrs began at the Museum of the War of Chinese People’s Resistance Against Japanese Aggression in Beijing on April 4, one day ahead of the Qingming Festival, or the Tomb-sweeping Day. Over 600 representatives from all walks of life attended the opening ceremony. The museum has hosted similar educational activities for 15 consecutive years since 2009 during the Qingming Festival.
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Photo: Li Hao/GT
Meanwhile, Macron, European Commission President Van der Leyen, Spain’s Prime Minister Sanchez, Malaysia’s Prime Minister arrived in China, Kishida will follow soon and Baerbock announced her arrival in mid-April. At the moment, diplomats are lining up in Beijing, also because of the Global Security Initiative, Beijing’s Ukraine peace initiative, although Washington is looking somewhat suspiciously at Chinese attempts to move the Europeans away from the United States and to split the West. So it remains to be seen whether DDP Tsai Yingwen will remain softin her speech in the USA or trigger a new Taiwan crisis with some outstanding remarks like Lee Denghui in his Cornell University speech about two states in the 1990s beyond the obligatory threatening gestures of the CCP in view of her meeting with Republican Speaker of the US House of Representatives Kevin McCarthy, which would suit some Chinahawks like Bolton, Pompeo, the Committee on the Present Danger: China and others who prefer to see peace doves like Milley and Ma Yingjiu fried and grilled and would eat them for breakfast.