Archive for the ‘Taiwan/China News’ Category

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KCNA: Text of Hu Jintao’s Speech during KJI Visit to China

May 10, 2010

Speech Made by Hu Jintao at Banquet

Pyongyang, May 8 (KCNA) — Hu Jintao, general secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China and president of the People’s Republic of China, made the following speech at a banquet:

“You, Comrade Kim Jong Il, general secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea and chairman of the National Defence Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, have visited China with the friendly feelings of the Korean party, government and people toward their Chinese counterparts in this beautiful spring season.

I, on behalf of the party, government and all the people of China, warmly welcome your visit to China.

It is my belief that your current visit to China would be recorded in the history of the development of the bilateral relations as an important occasion in boosting the traditional friendship.

Last year our two countries grandly celebrated the 60th anniversary of the establishment of China-DPRK diplomatic relations and held successful events to mark the “year of China-DPRK friendship,” the first of its kind in history, demonstrating the vibrant bilateral ties.

The six-decade-long history has proved that the bilateral relations can certainly make steady progress, weathering difficulties caused by the complicated international situation, if the two countries adhere to the correct orientation of the development of the bilateral relations in the spirit of “inheriting tradition, facing up to the future, building good neighborly friendship and strengthening cooperation”, help and cooperate with each other for mutual benefits and common prosperity from a broad perspective and in a far-sighted way, jointly push forward the socialist cause through an active exchange of views and close collaboration and pool efforts to defend interests common to the two countries and the two peoples.

The traditional China-DPRK friendship is a valuable asset of the two parties, the two countries and the two peoples and it is, therefore, our historic responsibility to advance the friendship with the passage of time and convey it down through generations.

The Chinese party and government have consistently defended and developed the relations of friendship and cooperation between the two countries on a strategic level, attaching utmost importance to them.

It is an unshakable policy of the party and government of China to steadily boost the bilateral friendship and cooperation.

They will exert joint efforts with their Korean counterparts to make a greater contribution to putting the relations between the two countries on a new, higher level, bringing bigger happiness to the two peoples and achieving a lasting peace and common prosperity in the region.

The diligent and resourceful Korean people are now working hard to greet the 65th anniversary of the WPK with fresh achievements.

We, as your friendly neighbor, dear comrade and true friend, sincerely hope that the DPRK would enjoy political stability, make economic growth and bring a happy life to its people.

I believe that the Korean people, under the resolute leadership of the WPK headed by you, would explore a road of development suited to the actual conditions of the country and certainly register fresh and greater achievements in their cause of building a great prosperous and powerful nation.”

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KCNA: Text of Kim Jong-Il’s Speech in China

May 10, 2010

“Speech of Kim Jong Il at Banquet Hosted by Hu Jintao ”

Pyongyang, May 8 (KCNA) — Kim Jong Il, general secretary of the Workers’ Party of Korea and chairman of the National Defence Commission of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea, made the following speech at a banquet:

“I am very pleased to visit China again at warm invitation of Comrade General Secretary Hu Jintao and have meaningful meetings with you and other Chinese comrades.

Allow me to express, first of all, my profound thanks to you for having arranged this grand banquet for us and made such excellent speech despite your very tight schedule.

I would like to express, at the same time, gratitude to you for having organized detailed and meticulous itineraries for our visits to Dalian and Tianjin. My thanks also go to comrades in Beijing and local areas for having warmly greeted and accorded cordial hospitality to us.

We came to your country in this beautiful season when it greeted spring after standing heaviest snowfall and bitterest cold in several decades. We toured northeastern China which we had long wished to see, keenly feeling the friendship of the fraternal Chinese people warmer than spring sunshine, the gift of nature.

During our visit we saw for ourselves fresh world-startling changes brought about by the people in northeastern China in political, economic, cultural and all other fields, pursuant to the strategy to develop the northeastern region, an old industrial base, under the leadership of the Communist Party of China with you as its general secretary.

We were deeply impressed particularly by the new appearance of Dalian and Tianjin which have undergone a remarkable change after doing away with the centuries-old backwardness; these cities were once harshly exploited and trampled down after being reduced to settlements of the imperialist powers and theatres of scrambles for expanding the sphere of their influence in the 19th century.

Witnessing the stirring reality in which hundreds of millions of Chinese people, who had been subject to all sorts of contempt and insult in the past, are now building a rich and powerful socialist country in the vast land of China full of energy, we came to know well that the policies of the Communist Party of China are very just ones suited to the actual conditions of China and they are fully displaying their vitalities wherever one goes in China.

These eye-opening events taking place in socialist China at present once again prove the truth that “There Is No New China without the Communist Party” just as one can know from the song of the same title.

The fact that everything goes well in China, our fraternal neighbor, hardens the faith that socialism chosen and defended by us is sure to triumph.

It is our firm belief that the fraternal Chinese people will unite closer around the CPC Central Committee with you Comrade Hu Jintao as its general secretary and thoroughly embody the spirit of the 17th Congress of the CPC, guided by the Deng Xiaoping’s theory, the important thought of “three represents” and the scientific outlook on development under the uplifted great banner of socialism with Chinese characteristics and thus build a harmoniously developed socialist society and certainly achieve the complete reunification of the whole country.

We sincerely hope that they will thoroughly implement the tasks set forth at the 3rd Session of the 11th National People’s Congress for the present to fully attain this year the goal of economic and social development envisaged in the period of the 11th Five-Year Plan, maintain stable and sustained economic development, and successfully host the Shanghai World Expo that opened with splendor and the forthcoming Guangzhou Asian Games and thus demonstrate once again the national power of prospering China before the whole world.

Touring this time northeastern China, which bears historic witness to the DPRK-China friendship, we could realize once again the value of DPRK-China friendship, the common wealth of the two countries which President Kim Il Sung provided while waging the hard-fought anti-Japanese struggle together with Chinese revolutionaries of the elder generation in his early years and bequeathed to us.

We are very grateful to the collective leadership of the Chinese party for having paid deep attention to boosting the friendly relations with the DPRK while consistently attaching importance to the bilateral relations from a strategic point of view and rendered sincere support and encouragement to the socialist cause of the Korean people.

The traditional DPRK-China relations of friendship that stood all tests of history century after century have powerfully encouraged the peoples of the two countries in their efforts to accomplish the socialist cause and made great contributions to protecting peace and stability in Northeast Asia including the Korean Peninsula and, furthermore, in the rest of the world.

Our two countries fixed last year as “year of DPRK-China friendship”, the first of its kind in history, and successfully organized visits of high-level delegations and significant events, powerfully demonstrating the unbreakable DPRK-China friendship internally and externally.

I am pleased that the DPRK-China friendship deeply enshrined by the two peoples has steadily grown stronger. I am very satisfied with the fact that my visit to China, in particular, provided a good occasion in further deepening the trust between the two countries and boosting the mutual understanding.

Our Party and government will as ever make every possible effort to inject fresh vitality into boosting the DPRK-China friendship, the common treasure, in all fields.”

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Why the Google.cn Issue Won’t Ruin Sino-US Relations

January 21, 2010

Among China watchers in Washington, DC , the big news today revolved around Secretary of State Hillary Clinton‘s speech on Internet Freedom. Given at the Newseum in downtown DC, Clinton railed lambasted governments and individuals who use communication networks like the Internet to lessen personal freedoms, human rights, and incite racial and political hatred. While some saw it as especially salient this week as Google decides whether or not it’s “Don’t Be Evil” motto can be upheld in its China operations, the bottom line is that no amount of verbal rhetoric or posturing can ultimately weaken the economic and regional security partnership of China and the United States.

Hillary Clinton has her ear to the ground on internet freedom.

Anticipating the Secretary’s speech today, the Vice Foreign Minister of China, He Yafei, tried to disentangle the Google.cn issue from overall Sino-US Relations. “The Google case should not be linked with relations between the two governments and countries; otherwise, it’s an over-interpretation,” he said, addressing a press conference in Beijing, then adding that “If foreign companies have different viewpoints with this regard, they should also seek solutions according to the law.”

But is this nothing new? Is the Vice FM correct in saying that this won’t hamper future relations? I think so and for a multitude of reasons. Primarily, President Obama has been extremely careful to lay down a good foundation upon which to build better Sino-US ties during his Presidency. I would think his scuttling of the human rights issue in Beijing, gentle refusal to meet the Dalai Lama before he met with Chinese leadership, and lengthy Asia trip extolling the virtues of the, what State Department Spokesman P.J. Crowley characterizes as a “broad, deep, expanding and durable relationship.”

Also, we must consider the implications for a negative turn in Sino-US relations. Even coming from a hippie optimist like myself, a dip in relations would affect our domestic economic situation (China increased its foreign reserves by $453 billion last year alone), regional security situation (China is the chair of the Six-Party Talks, aimed at bringing North Korea back to the table on nuclear weapons talks), and cultural influence (the US benefits just as much from cheap Chinese imports as the Chinese do from McDonald’s, Nike, and knock-off Playboy t-shirts…they’re more popular than you think).

Clinton today made several strong statements. She said “We stand for a single internet, where all of humanity has equal access to knowledge and ideas and we recognize that the world’s information infrastructure will become what we and others make of it.” But, she also said that “the United States and China have different views on this issue and we intend to address those differences candidly and consistently in the context of our positive, cooperative, and comprehensive relationship [italics mine].” Strong statement and Global Internet Initiatives aside, the U.S. is, and will remain, willing to work cooperatively with China on issues as seemingly black-and-white as human rights. The bottom line is that the U.S. has to – considering global and regional power relationships, there is no other choice.

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What China Censors Online

January 20, 2010

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US-China Relations Outlook 2010: 什么样的关系?

January 13, 2010

A hearing on recent security developments in the People’s Republic of China provided a somewhat bleak outlook for the near future of US-China relations, echoing the wary sentiments of pundits and academics in recent weeks. Meeting at one of the House Visitors’ Centers’ many committee rooms this morning, the House Armed Services Committee heard testimony from top Department of Defense, State, and PACOM officials on what we can expect this year from the growing strength of China in the global arena.

In unusual agreement with pundits’ (see Robert Cohen’s recent NYT Op-Ed) and academics’ recent warnings concerning China’s military and economic might, Pacific Command Admiral Robert F. Willard, USN, expressed him uneasiness at China’s PLA capabilities. He said that China’s stated goals of peace and stability in the region and world are unmatched by their recent military buildup.

Building on issues of military might, Department of Defense A/S Wallace C. Gregson describes current US-Chinese relations as operating in a “dynamic environment with little historical precedent.” Positives in the relationship, which include China’s support of UN Security Council Resolution 1874  and anti-piracy efforts in the Gulf of Aden are matched by negatives such as an overall lack of transparency  and the pace and scope of their military buildup.

Concluding remarks came from Department of State Deputy A/S for East Asian and Pacific Affairs David B. Shear, who seemingly tried to re-prove to the House members how State officials have tried to engage the region in a dynamic and cooperative manner, bring up the numerous POTUS and Secretary trips to the region. However, his recap of the last year of efforts in Asia was darkened by a statement on the recent near-decision by Google to pull out its operations in China in light of an apparent cyberattack perpetrated by China against various Chinese human rights activists who use GMail. He reiterated today’s remarks from Secretary Clinton that State was briefed on the matter by Google previously and that a scheduled press conference on internet security and openness scheduled for next Thursday was scheduled prior to this fact.

The overall tone of all testimonies given seemed to parallel the feelings of many China watchers these days – although China is becoming more accountable to global norms of transparency and responsibility, this is only a natural change due to its increased presence on the global stage. Stated goals and dreams of peace by the PRC seem to be what they’ve always been – lipservice – and the PLA military buildup’s actions speak louder than these words. Wariness seems to be the best posture to be taken by the US at this point – wariness and preparedness. Within the next few weeks, China’s moves on the Google issue and on Iran sanctions could prove as a good litmus test to actions in the rest of 2010.

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POST: The U.S. Should Use Taiwan Health Care System as Exemplar

August 14, 2009

The health care bill in the U.S., sitting up there on Capitol Hill (yes, just like in the old cartoons) is bleeding. And it has been for weeks. The manipulation of its message and falsification of many aspects of its contents has now led to the removal of ‘end of life counseling’ funding. This, in it of itself, is a sad development.

But yesterday, the fight was taken overseas, as British politicians, doctors, academic, and laymen came to the aid of the National Heath System in the UK after scathing comment calling the NHS “evil” and “Orwellian” were made by U.S. Republican politicians. Among those who joined the fray were PM Gordon Brown, who tweeted “PM: NHS often makes the difference between pain and comfort, despair and hope, life and death. Thanks for always being there,” adding to the thousands of Tweets already lighting up #welovetheNHS. Stephen Hawking also lent his two cents, stating he would not have been alive if it had not been for the care of the NHS – a particularly meaningful remark, considering both the complicated (and costly) medical condition which he has and also considering Republican claims that currently ailing Senator Ted Kennedy would be left to die with a brain tumor if he has been a UK citizen.

Sure, there are problems with the NHS. Hospitals are often dirty, lines are long, and some people are left to wait interminably long for special treatments, not to mention the state of child care. But, the bottom line is that everyone is covered. Most Brits I talked to about the NHS during my tenure in London stated that it has its flaws, but it sets their minds at ease that care will always be within their reach and within their means. And, if those flaws weigh on Americans’ minds, it should ameliorate their worries that the U.S. plan has strayed so far from what can be deemed universal care that its a moot issue. (At the end of the day, the US won’t have universal health care for many years, even if this bill passes, due to the concessions Democrats have had to make).

A nurse in central Taiwan cares for a baby...can we get those Hello kitty heath care digs with our new plan?

A nurse in central Taiwan cares for a baby...can we get those Hello kitty heath care digs with our new plan?

So, if the NHS has its flaws that Americans are unwilling to accept, why didn’t they look towards other systems as well? The one that comes to my mind is the Taiwanese system. Developed in the 1980’s after the period of economic boom in East Asia, the Taiwanese system employs the most efficient mechanism – single payer, mandatory health care. This means that the government covers all health care and that every citizen is required to sign up.  Sound scary to Conseravtives?  Well put this in your pipe and smoke it – even if Taiwan increased its health care spending by almost double, to 10% of GDP, it would still be 6% under what the US spends, and with palpable results. That’s right, in 2008 Taiwan spent about 5.5% of GDP on health care and covered 96% of its population…while the U.S. loomed somewhere around 16% with much lower satisfaction.

Taiwan uses a system of ‘smart cards‘ that one carries around, onto which your medical history, medications, and past visits are recorded.  Say you wake up with a bad cold (swine flu, anyone?) and need to see a doctor right away, you are able to do so (that’s right, NO LINES) the same day. The doctor examines you, charges your smart card, and the costs are billed to the government. This way, the Taiwanese authorities save millions of dollars on unnecessary administrative costs (think about all those papers, charts, and the red tape that is required of switching cities, even of switching doctors within the same office?).  Even with these low costs, the Taiwanese system boast a super-high level of efficiency, customer satisfaction (around 70% satisfied), and coverage of 97% of the population. Not only is there a lack of satisfaction in the US, but before the lies began to be propagated anew in this administration’s fight for care, a 2004 poll showed that 1/3 of Americans thought the system needed to be “completely rebuilt.”

I understand that Taiwan is a tiny island and its system still has its problems (which could be remedied by a slight increase in spending, some say) and the US a behemoth. But come on, we’re making the effort enough to change health care domestically, why couldn’t we have considered this paradigm first? Thoughts?