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Pacific Rim Report No. 7, February 1998
The Cross-Taiwan Strait Dilemma: Danger and Opportunity
A Symposium Summary edited with commentary by Stephen Uhalley, Jr.



In this issue of Pacific Rim Report we are pleased to present a summary article based on the discussion of a public symposium sponsored by the University of San Francisco (USF) Center for the Pacific Rim and its Ricci Institute at the USF campus on February 12, 1998.

Entitled “The Cross-Taiwan Strait Dilemma: Danger and Opportunity,” the symposium included four invited American scholars and was chaired by Stephen Uhalley, Jr., Kiriyama Chair Fellow and EDS-Stewart Chair Fellow at the USF Center for the Pacific Rim and Ricci Institute, and Emeritus Professor of History, University of Hawaii. The invited speakers were John Copper, Stanley J. Buckman Professor of International Studies, Rhodes College; Thomas Gold, Associate Professor of Sociology, University of California at Berkeley; Ramon Myers, Senior Fellow and Curator, East Asian Collection, Hoover Institution, Stanford University; and Franz Schurmann, Associate Editor, Pacific News Service, and Emeritus Professor of History and Sociology, University of California at Berkeley.

We gratefully acknowledge the Kiriyama Chair for Pacific Rim Studies and a grant from Union Bank of California for funding this issue of Pacific Rim Report.

The historic emergence of today’s Greater China, which now formally includes Hong Kong, one of the world’s richest and most dynamic economies, has been a special project of the USF Center for the Pacific Rim for the past year and a half. China as whole (i.e., the complete “Greater China” which also includes Macau and Taiwan) is notably prospering and boasts an array of oft-touted, impressive “gee whiz” statistics. Consider some of the salient numbers as of November 1997: Greater China has a combined population of 1.231 billion; a GDP of US $1,086 billion; foreign exchange reserves of US $290 billion; and foreign trade of US $867 billion.1 Also, some are tempted to factor into this somewhat amorphous economic entity what could be considered the supportive role of economically vibrant Singapore as well as varying support from at least an important portion of the estimated 36.1 million Chinese abroad.2

Moreover, Greater China has been and remains an area of continued, sustained economic growth over a significant period of time, an achievement that invites favorable comparisons both globally today and historically over the centuries. Remember, too, that this powerful Chinese economic entity as a whole has managed to do respectably well so far during the financial crisis that has swept over most of the rest of East and Southeast Asia in recent months; in fact, it is proving to be a responsibly steadying force in the region during this period.

Of course, one can discern weaknesses too, and serious contradictions, as might be expected in such an expansive area with its huge growing overall population and that is undergoing such rapid systemic transformations and valuational changes. Among these problems are serious weaknesses in the banking system, growing unemployment, the ailing, if transforming state industries, extensive corruption, and increasing crime. But, thus far anyway, the presence of these formidable problems seems to make the economic progress that is being made in spite of them all the more noteworthy.

A Significant Moment in History


Thus, this is a truly significant moment in history, one that is full of promise and hope for China and for the Chinese people. We are witnessing a re-integrating, prospering China that is on the rise (after, as has been said, “a couple of bad centuries”), a major power whose full strength is yet to be tapped and whose great potential is still to be fully realized.

With the reversion of Hong Kong to China, which now after more than ten months is proving to have been a remarkably successful transfer of sovereignty and one that has surely strengthened China overall, the focus of world attention has switched to Taiwan. Taiwan, with three times the population of Hong Kong, is, in its own right, one of the leading economies in the world, with particular strength in electronics and the computer industry. It has considerable capital reserves, a well-educated populace with extensive professional skills, and a formidable, if limited, modern military capability. Taiwan is an exceedingly important constituent of the Greater China economic entity and, as has been the case with Hong Kong, although to a lesser degree, it is already becoming increasingly integrated economically with the mainland.

But, Taiwan’s relationship with the Chinese mainland is also an unsettled one and unlike Hong Kong’s situation, its eventual formal unification with the mainland is not necessarily a forgone conclusion, at least in the near future, however insistent Beijing may be on this point. Despite the thickening economic relationship there are many differences between the two entities, some quite large and significant differences, which together have produced a real gulf between them. There remains, in fact, a state of civil war between the two respective governments, the People’s Republic of China (PRC) on the one hand and the Republic of China (ROC) on the other. Also, importantly, the gulf between the two entities at present is actually widening, and widening quickly. This reality, in turn, only makes leaders in Beijing all the more apprehensive that Taiwan may be slipping away.

It is a situation wherein, despite the best of intentions on both sides, mistakes can be made, particularly as emotions rise. And emotions are an important factor as nationalistic sentiment increases on both sides of the Strait. While the outbreak of a conventional-type war in the Taiwan Strait is not likely, the possibility should not be ruled-out. That possibility would have catastrophic consequences for China, for the region, and for the world. Remember, the Taiwan Strait is one of the two, long-acknowledged flashpoints in East Asia (the other is the Korean Peninsula). Only two years ago Beijing was lobbing missiles close to Taiwan in an effort to influence the historic first popular election of a Chinese president on the island…and two American carrier groups were rushed to the scene. Thus, despite all the positive signals accompanying the rise of Greater China, despite all the promise, this does remain a serious unresolved problem. It could become explosive.

Hence, the convening of the “Cross-Taiwan Strait” symposium at the USF Center for the Pacific Rim, which in a limited afternoon session addressed the problem systematically, beginning with attention to the basic problematic of a divided China, followed by an examination of just what the situation is at the present time, and concluding with initial thoughts about what might be done to improve matters.

The Problematic of a Divided China

At present, despite the increasing economic integration that is underway, mainland China and Taiwan are divided politically. This division is a serious one despite the desire of many Chinese on both sides of the Strait to bring about a satisfactory reunification of the country or an otherwise mutually satisfactory resolution of the political estrangement. Answering the question as to why there is such a division to begin with is not an uncomplicated endeavor.

John Copper recalled that at the end of the Second World War there were four divided nations, but China’s division, unlike the division of Germany, Korea, and Vietnam, was not a result of the war itself. Taiwan was already split from the Chinese mainland, having been ruled by Japan as a colony for fifty years. Immediately before 1895, Taiwan had been governed (since 1683) by the non-Chinese Manchus who ruled China from 1644 to 1912. And before 1683 Taiwan experienced periods of Dutch colonial rule and self-rule. Thus Taiwan has a history quite different from the other divided nations so that in 1945 it was culturally, linguistically, politically, and economically very different from the mainland, making its people’s experience quite unique. And even though it would be governed by Chinese mainlanders from 1945, it was again divided from the mainland only four years later, in 1949, when the Nationalist Government (ROC) fled from the mainland and the PRC established its authority there.

Enlarging on this historical review, Ramon Myers saw the problematic of a divided China as a tragedy of history in which late nineteenth century foreign imperialism and mid-twentieth-century civil war in China led to two Chinese states that “are very different in their political, economic, and social systems but each dedicated to the unification of China.”

Copper also opined that the end of the Cold War and the bipolar system served to underscore a generally-held view throughout the world that it was only a matter of time before Korea and China too would be reunited especially since there is no longer the global struggle between communism and capitalism/democracy. However, Copper cautioned that in Asia communism is not, in fact, dead, although in China its ideology has little relevance. Even so, one cannot predict when Korea and China will abandon communism formally.

The Situation at Present

Over the past several weeks just prior to this symposium, Beijing had unleashed a renewed campaign pressing for cross-Strait political negotiations. Actually, there had already been intimations for several months that talks might be resumed in the spring or summer of 1998. It was expected that given President Jiang’s strengthened hand after the 15th Party Congress in September 1997 and his official visit to Washington, D.C. in November 1997, he would be in a better position with respect to domestic politics to deal with the issue. Thus, speeches and media comment on unification with Taiwan appeared in greater earnest with the third anniversary of President Jiang’s eight-point speech of January 30, 1995.3

The mainland propaganda campaign also featured a more conciliatory posture and seemed to make some concessions in order to encourage a positive response from Taipei. For example, Tang Shubei, the vice-chairman of the Association for Relations Across the Taiwan Strait (ARATS), which is the mainland counterpart to the Strait Exchange Foundation (SEF), the two bodies which had been carrying on the talks in the past, indicated that Taiwan would not need to acknowledge the PRC government at such negotiations.4 However, the talks are to be political talks and not just negotiations over practical matters as insisted upon by Taipei. In any case, it was generally expected that talks might materialize once again soon after the completion of the National People’s Congress in March 1998 and President Bill Clinton’s return visit to Beijing.5 Whether such talks, if resumed, would progress any further than they have in the past is another matter.

By way of background to these recent developments, Ramon Myers recalled that since 1949 the divided China problem has gone through three phases. The first was from 1949 to 1981, during which period each regime threatened to use military force to liberate the people of the other side in order to unify China. The second phase began with Ye Jianying’s proposal of September 30, 1981 and Deng Xiaoping’s six-point policy of June 26, 1983 which advanced the “one country, two systems” theory, giving Beijing a new strategy for unifying China. Phase three began after the ROC’s strategy changed in 1991: “Its two new principles were a pragmatic foreign policy to enhance its international status and the Unification Guidelines comprising a three-stage process to unify China.” Meanwhile, “the PRC’s strategy, based on the principle of one China and the ‘one country, two systems’ theory, has continued to the present.”

Myers explained that ROC leaders argue that, “as an independent state, the ROC has the right to establish its foreign policy. Yet they still want unification of China on a three-stage basis. Stage one is a phase of exchange and reciprocity in which intermediary organizations are created to interact and promote exchange and interests, but there must be economic reform in the PRC, more freedom to speak out, democracy, and the rule of law; most important, each side should renounce the use of force.” Myers continued: “Stage two is to build mutual trust and cooperation in which the ‘three links’ [air, shipping, and postal communications] are directly established, each side works together in international organizations, and high officials meet. The third stage is one of consultation and unification. The ROC position is that each stage sets the conditions for moving to the next stage.” Myers said that for the ROC, Beijing’s one China principle does not apply because two different Chinese regimes have long existed, and each side now offers a different strategy for unifying China.

John Copper reiterated the point that communist regimes, even though ended in Europe, still remain in East Asia “and Cold War hostilities are not just a matter of history.” Communism as an ideology is dead or quickly dying as far as most people in China are concerned, but “it still serves as the basis for a single party political system and authoritarianism.” As in Korea, Copper repeated, “past hostilities remain extant.”

Underscoring the intractability of the situation, Ramon Myers maintained that the divided China problematic has produced the following impasse:

First, there are currently no direct, formal negotiations between the two sides as was the situation in 1992 when formal semi-official talks between ARATS and SEF began in Singapore. Beijing terminated these cross-Strait talks in 1995 after President Lee Teng-hui visited his alma mater, Cornell University. The PRC now insists that talks can resume only if both sides adhere to the one China principle, while the ROC insists that they should resume without discussion of the one China principle because “one China is not a historical reality in political terms, but only a cultural, geographical identity.” Second, the different strategies that the two Chinese sides have adopted further intensifies the current stalemate. Third, the leaders of both sides deeply mistrust each other. President Lee, for his part, does not believe the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) sincerely wants to reform its system, while President Jiang Zemin and his advisers believe that President Lee wants Taiwan independence.

Fourth, Myers maintains that “powerful socio-ideological forces in each society have interacted to harden the strategies of each side.” There are Taiwanese people on the mainland “who strongly favor unification on the PRC’s terms; scholars and elites are strongly patriotic and believe that unification is their nation’s sacred mission; within the military-security complex of government, a majority believes that an armed, independent Taiwan is a strong threat to the PRC; and the Communist Party has long been dedicated to China’s reunification and cannot back down from achieving that goal.” On the other hand, in Taiwan “public opinion polls reveal that some 15-20 percent of the population renounce the one China principle and want independence; another 15-20 percent strongly favor unification; and the remaining 60-70 percent prefer the status quo and adopt a wait-and-see attitude.”

Thus, with domestic conditions strengthening the impasse, Myers predicts that there will be no resumption of formal negotiations between SEF and ARATS. He noted that although ROC officials repeatedly appeal for resuming negotiations without preconditions, Beijing’s officials also repeatedly state their willingness to talk, “but only within the framework of the one China principle.”

Franz Schurmann agreed that there was a deadlock at present, but reminded the participants that in the world today everything is moving faster and faster. Furthermore, we should not underestimate China. He pointed out that Mencius had been the first democratic philosopher, not Aristotle. American democracy is not a model for the world. There are political stirrings in China. A third actor must enter the stage to change politics. “Something has got to happen,” Schurmann said, “to change things.”

Thomas Gold recalled writing some ten years ago that the status quo in Taiwan then was not static. But he would not have predicted, he said, the changes that have taken place since then. The number of exchanges with the Chinese mainland have become phenomenal. Indeed, in 1997 alone about 1,900,000 Taiwanese visited the mainland, setting a new annual record.6 Moreover, despite the Taiwan government efforts to dissuade further investment on the mainland, such investment continues to increase and trade between Taiwan and China rose another ten percent over the previous year to $24.45 billion in 1997.7 However, Gold said that he was mindful of two strikingly contradictory trends in the cross-Strait relationship on the part of Taiwan. On the one hand, there is the rapid development of economic relationships, while on the other hand, there is a contrary, decreasing desire to reunify with the mainland.

What Can Be Done to Improve Matters?


The consensus of the symposium suggested that changes which would make a real difference in the current impasse do not appear likely at present. The political leadership on each side of the Strait is preoccupied with other urgent matters. Furthermore, no one would like to see the prospering economies jeopardized especially with the financial crisis elsewhere in Asia at present. Ramon Myers does not see sufficient internal debate coming about soon on either side. In Beijing, given the nature of the regime, there simply is no such public debate. In Taiwan there was a challenge mounted momentarily last October from prominent businessmen in an effort to loosen strictures on the three links, but a real debate has yet to materialize. Meanwhile, Myers sees problems of a specific, concrete nature in the ongoing cross-Strait traffic continuing to be resolved by local authorities and the Red Cross, while both sides are willing to wait for new momentum to build. And this might take until presidential elections are again held in Taiwan in the spring of 2000.

Nor does Myers see what the United States might do at this point. The Clinton Administration, too, is currently faced with a number of other pressing issues. All agreed that the role of the United States is important. Franz Schurmann pointed out that every article on cross-Strait relations in the PRC puts the United States at the core of the issue. He believed that the U.S. cannot afford another Taiwan Strait crisis. The U.S. is more unstable than China at the moment, given a sex scandal in the White House and other problems. “It is pointless talking policy,” he said, “when facing breakdown.” There was guarded consensus on the desirability of the U.S. maintaining a policy of ambiguity as well as the insistence that the problem be resolved by the Chinese themselves without resort to armed force. Thomas Gold believes that the United States can not afford to get involved again with a show of force as it did in early 1996. “What would the U.S. do for an encore?” He wondered if a Daoist policy of doing nothing might not be helpful, but conceded the value of ambiguity in the meantime.

John Copper said that the term engagement, which was already around, has been nominally substituted for strategic ambiguity because the latter policy proved dangerous in early 1996. However, U.S. China policy, especially with regard to relations between Beijing and Taipei or concerning the matter of a divided China, remains ambiguous. In fact, Copper believes “the U.S. stance, because of greater disagreements between the executive and legislative branches of government, has become even more ambiguous.”

Franz Schurmann observed that “the surprisingly lavish reception President Jiang Zemin was given last November during his visit to the U.S. marked America’s recognition of China as the world's second superpower.” Continuing, Schurmann said: “If this is correct, then we already know that the Sino-American relationship is going to be constructive. It doesn’t matter that interests and ideologies diverge. The two superpowers will have to cooperate. This will have direct bearings on the cross-Strait affair.”

John Copper said that President Jiang’s visit to the United States put a better face on U.S.-PRC relations and helped to alleviate continuing tensions between the two over the 1996 Taiwan Strait crisis. But it did not lead to any meaningful clarification in U.S. China policy or any new policies. The “Taiwan issue” or the divided China problem was not the subject of meaningful or substantive discussions. Copper noted that the U.S. has in very recent months expressed concern about stronger voices of Taiwan independence in Taipei and has even issued warnings to some political leaders in Taiwan. He said that this has produced hints of worry on the part of Washington and to speculation about greater American involvement in the divided China issue that might lead to pressing for negotiations between Beijing and Taipei. Unfortnately, U.S. policy on this matter and U.S. China policy, as a whole, remains ill-defined.

Ultimately, the Chinese themselves might well resolve the impasse. Beijing could eventually undertake the political reforms that would make the mainland a much more congenial partner in the future. Meanwhile, Copper said that the most important single thing that the leaders in Beijing could do would be to change their position that “one China” means the PRC. Also, they need to depart from their position that the “Taiwan issue” and all disagreements across the Strait are “domestic” matters only. “If Taipei is regarded as having no sovereignty, it is difficult to arrange negotiations inasmuch as negotiations imply an equal rank and talks between two sovereign entities.”

As for Taipei leaders, they need to deal with “the harsh advocates of Taiwan independence,” which is not easy because of Taiwan’s democratization. There is a need to assess the “Taiwan independence issue as a position that is essentially isolationist (which does not fit with Taipei’s internationalist foreign and economic policies) and is not in consonance with the ROC being a member of the Pacific Rim community, which is rapidly becoming an East Asian economic bloc (of which the PRC is also a member).”

Copper also affirmed that Taiwan needs to avoid any provocative military actions, to express a sincere and strong desire to engage in talks with Beijing, and to encourage trade and investment ties. This latter point means moderating its “Go South” policy, a policy which has sought to divert investments away from the mainland to Southeast Asia. Copper also advocated the need for both sides to think in terms of step-by-step solutions, building from economic links to eventual political rapprochement.

Ramon Myers suggests a “commonwealth” arrangement between the two entities, an association format that would redound to their mutual benefit and still conform to a one China principle. This rendering of the latter principle construes “China” in the fuller cultural sense that encompasses differing political components. Coincidentally with this suggestion, in Taipei on the day following our symposium in San Francisco (February 13, 1998), Shih Ming-the, the former head of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) in Taiwan, also proposed a “Great Chinese Commonwealth” scheme to serve as a model for the unification of the two sides of the Taiwan Strait. This idea sees both mainland China and Taiwan as international legal entities of equal status. Shih says that while the “two Chinas” or “one China, one Taiwan” models do seek Taiwan independence, his model could secure Taiwan’s independent sovereignty while avoiding conflict with the mainland.8

For the present, mainland authorities continue to advocate the “one country, two systems” formula and see Taiwan ultimately as another special autonomous region, and this is flatly rejected by Taipei. That the formula appears to be working so far in Hong Kong leaves Taiwan leaders unmoved inasmuch as they see Taiwan as a very different entity than Hong Kong.

Because of the campaign launched from the mainland in recent weeks there continues to be considerable media rhetoric about restoring talks between the two sides. For its part, Taiwan insists that “democratic unification” should be the goal of any such talks, reaffirming its cautious approach to political negotiations. Taiwan’s Premier, Vincent Siew Wan-chang, says that the process should resume initially with technical talks in order to build trust for a broader political dialogue that could follow. In practical terms this means beginning anew the technical talks between Koo Chen-fu and Wang Daohan, the heads, respectively of SEF and ARATS, where they had been broken off by Beijing in 1995.

Yet, toward the end of February, it seemed that Beijing was signaling that it might actually accept Taipei’s cautious terms for bringing to an end the 31-month-old impasse in the semi-official talks and welcomed a proposal made earlier by Koo Chen-fu to visit the mainland. This “positive response” was in turn welcomed by Chang King-yuh, head of Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council.9 There was even an uncorroborated report that a secret contact had been made between senior officials from the two sides during their simultaneous visits to Tokyo in mid-January.10

Also of interest, on the three days immediately following the Center for the Pacific Rim’s symposium (February 13-15, 1998), the DPP held its own party symposium in order to hammer out a policy on relations with mainland China (the meeting at which Shih Ming-the, above, made his commonwealth proposal). This was a particularly significant event because the DPP is the principal opposition party in Taiwan whose challenge to the ruling Nationalist Party or Kuomin-tang is steadily growing; and it had done particularly well in the island-wide local elections for county magistrates and city mayors in November 1997, winning twelve of the twenty-three races. These results are a matter of concern to Beijing because of the DPP’s avowed pro-independence stance. But within the DPP there had been divided views on an appropriate policy on cross-Strait relations.

Although the results of the symposium must be endorsed at a DPP congress this May, the DPP’s February symposium suggested that there is a fundamental change within the ranks of the DPP. A consensus was reached on the issues of national sovereignty and a strategy on how the DPP would promote cross-Strait talks and open direct economic links with the mainland.11 The symposium did not discuss the independence issue. The DPP’s transparent debate on this exceedingly important and sensitive issue would also seem to represent a yet further maturation of democracy in Taiwan.

This internal debate within the DPP seems a beginning to what Ramon Myers suggested as a way out of the dilemma in cross-Strait relations. Believing the ROC’s current strategy too rigid and unrealistic, Myers had said that “what must be done is to initiate a debate within the democratic ROC for that regime to consider a new strategy toward the PRC.”

Hence, there is currently some interesting movement underway on both sides of the Taiwan Strait, but it remains to be seen whether such changes in thinking or rhetorical concessions are sufficiently significant to bring about meaningful negotiations between Beijing and Taipei in the near future. Meanwhile, as Ramon Myers indicated: “The divided China issue is a serious problem facing the American global alliance, which rests on a series of bilateral and multilateral relations.…Tensions can erupt over this issue if leaders misjudge events. I believe divided China is the most volatile, serious problem that nations in the Asia Pacific region now face.”

Unfortunately, the media in the United States gives very little attention to this serious problem and to these developments. This is deplorable. Things could develop badly, very quickly. Few people in the United States are sufficiently informed about the basics of the cross-Taiwan Strait situation and it is difficult to know what is going on. Too many Americans are unaware that there even is a problem, much less have an inkling of how complex it is. Yet, we need to know about it and to keep up-to-date. We need to know just what is our national interest in the matter. We need to know just exactly what our China policy is; what are our responsibilities; what can be done to help avert an unwanted serious mishap.

Clearly, the cross-Taiwan Strait situation is an important matter that deserves much more attention by Americans than has been accorded it thus far. Yet, it is a matter that must be handled with the utmost care and diplomacy, given Beijing’s sensibilities regarding what it considers a domestic issue, not an international one that justifies intervention from the outside. Truly, the situation poses a most delicate dilemma.


Notes

1 Professor Y.C. Jao of Hong Kong University, speaking in Singapore on November 8, 1997. Reporter Conrad Lu, Taiwan Central News Agency in English, November 8, 1997, in FBIS-CHI- 97-313, World News Connection (WNC) Internet, November 12, 1997. BACK TO TEXT

2 Taipei, Taiwan Central News Agency in English, February 5, 1998, in FBIS-CHI-98-036, WNC, February 6, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

3 A particularly authoritative such speech was given by Vice Premier and Foreign Minister Qian Qichen. See Renmin Ribao reporter Chen Weiwei and Xinhua reporter Fan Liqing, Beijing Xinhua Domestic Service in Chinese, January 26, 1998, in FBIS-CHI-98-026, WNC, January 27, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

4 Reporter Lu Junjun, Beijing, Beijing Zhongguo Xinwen She in Chinese, January 26, 1998, in FBIS-CHI-98-026, WNC, January 30, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

5 Lilian Wu, “Cross-Strait Talks Expected To Resume Next Spring,” Taiwan Central News Agency WWW, December 24, 1997, in FBIS-CHI-97-358, WNC, December 29, 1997. BACK TO TEXT

6 Statistic provided by Tang Shubei at his press conference in Beijing on January 26, 1998. Reporter Lu Junjun in Beijing Zhongguo Xinwen She in Chinese, January 26, 1998, in FBIS-CHI- 98-026, January 29, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

7 The Associated Press, Taipei, Taiwan, “Taiwan, China Trade Surges 10 Pct.,” AOL News, Internet, February 27, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

8 Reporter Lin Wen-fen, Taipei, Taiwan Central News Agency WWW, February 13, 1998, in FBIS-CHI-96-044, WNC, February 17, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

9 Reuters, “Beijing Softens Line on Taiwan,” South China Morning Post, Internet Edition, February 25, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

10 Chen Tzu-po, “When False is Taken for True, What is True is False--Interpreting High-Level, Secret Cross-Strait Contact in Tokyo,” Hong Kong Hsin Pao, February 20, 1998, p. 22, in FBIS- CHI-98-051, WNC, February 24, 1998. BACK TO TEXT

11 See Virginia Sheng, “DPP factions unite in mainland policy meeting,” The Free China Journal, February 20, 1998, p. 1. BACK TO TEXT



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