Last week, Taiwan became more isolated than ever. Panama is the latest country to break relations with Taiwan, known officially as the Republic of China, and instead recognize Beijing, the People’s Republic of China, leaving the island nation only 20 countries that recognize its legitimacy. This trend is not new: The two Chinas have battled for recognition since they separated after the Second World War. Yet this holdover conflict from the Cold War really only matters today for Taiwan and mainland China. For those countries that receive economic benefits for recognizing one over the other, it is only a matter of who offers more investment, aid, and infrastructure.
This game of winning over countries with aid and infrastructure has been the norm since mainland China and Taiwan separated in the 1950s, following China’s brutal civil war. After being run out of the country by Mao Zedong’s Communist Party, the nationalist Kuomintang led by Chiang Kai-shek established their government in Taipei, declaring Taiwan to be the “real China.” The People’s Republic of China, on the other hand, sees Taiwan as a renegade province and has as its ultimate goal its reunification with the rest of China — their so-called One-China Policy. Since then, the two nations have been fighting over who is the “real” China by obtaining the recognition of other countries.
Read the rest at: RealClearPolicy
Chinese UC San Diego students felt the Tibetan spiritual leader contravened the spirit of respect, tolerance, equality, and earnestness
Rather than the usual hullabaloo over Charles Murray, Ann Coulter, and Milo Yiannopoulos, the subject of student ire this Saturday at University of California, San Diego, was none other than the Dalai Lama.
Despite the similarity in rhetoric, the protesters weren’t liberals offended by a provocative right-wing speaker, but Chinese students—the passage above is from the Chinese Students and Scholars Association—who see the Tibetan spiritual leader as a separatist political figure who threatens their culture and governance.
Continue reading at Reason
Two weeks into the new year, we may already be able to hand out the award for 2016’s biggest historical irony. Internet users in China have shown the world a gigantic golden statue of Mao Zedong built in one of the provinces devastated most severely by the Chairman’s attempts to build a communist utopia. The 121-foot tall statue, completed in mid-December, features Chairman Mao sitting with his hands crossed on his lap, staring out into the fields—the very same ones he sabotaged 58 years ago, causing one of the worst famines the world has ever seen.
Little is known about the origins or purpose of the statue, but the BBC reported that it was funded by local businessmen and cost around $460,000. Only four days after the news broke, however, the giant Mao was already being dismantled. The official explanation from the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) was that the construction of the statue had not been approved. Yet the statue was completed in December, and it was not until the statue came in for international criticism that the CCP addressed the issue.
Read the rest on Dissident here.
American students have been complaining about campus food for centuries. In fact, the first recorded student protest on the continent in 1766 was over the poor quality of Harvard’s butter. However, Oberlin students aren’t worried about the taste of their college’s fare, but rather that it’s racist.
That’s right, the Oberlin Review reports that numerous students are concerned that their school’s cafeteria food is culturally insensitive:
Diep Nguyen, a College first-year from Vietnam, jumped with excitement at the sight of Vietnamese food on Stevenson Dining Hall’s menu at Orientation this year. Craving Vietnamese comfort food, Nguyen rushed to the food station with high hopes. What she got, however, was a total disappointment.
The traditional Banh Mi Vietnamese sandwich that Stevenson Dining Hall promised turned out to be a cheap imitation of the East Asian dish. Instead of a crispy baguette with grilled pork, pate, pickled vegetables and fresh herbs, the sandwich used ciabatta bread, pulled pork and coleslaw.
“It was ridiculous,” Nguyen said. “How could they just throw out something completely different and label it as another country’s traditional food?”
Read the rest on Rare here.