Taiwan's Former Pres. Ma Begins China Visit

Image copyright: Reuters

The Facts

  • Taiwan's former Pres. Ma Ying-jeou on Monday kicked off a 12-day private trip to several cities in China amid strained relations between the self-ruled island and Beijing.

  • Accompanied by a delegation of Taiwanese students, Ma said his trip was aimed at easing cross-strait tensions and promoting peace. Ma emphasized the importance of fostering people-to-people exchanges and also stated he would honor his ancestors.

The Spin

Pro-China narrative

While Tsai and her secessionist DPP are in collusion with anti-PRC forces and have brought Taiwan to the brink of war, Ma's visit reflects the policies of his presidency and sends an important signal of détente. Taipei needs to understand that the US-promoted path of confrontation to maintain its crumbling hegemonic status in the Indo-Pacific is a dead end for the Chinese people. Only dialogue and appreciation of shared cultural roots will ultimately lead to cross-strait peace.

Anti-China narrative

Ma's trip plays into the hands of the PRC regime, which has been working to reclaim Taiwan since the Chinese Civil War. Taiwan plays a key role in Beijing's hegemonic ambitions as a springboard for dominating the Asia-Pacific region and challenging the US. At least since Tsai Ing-wen became president, Beijing has been gearing up for war against Taiwan; Washington and the world community must not let Ma's naïve trip blind them to the need to prepare for the worst.

Nerd narrative

There’s a 58% chance that the Democratic Progressive Party will win the 2024 Taiwanese presidential election, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

Establishment split



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