Đọc báo Tàu Supchina:Tàu(lục địa) không đánh Tàu(Đài Loan)nhưng có thể dùng vũ lực xâm chiếm Đài Loan(để cưởng chế thống nhất)……

1. Chinese don’t fight Chinese, but they might invade your island

On New Year’s Day, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文 Cài Yīngwén) gave a speech (EnglishChinese) in which she describes “four musts” (四個必須 sìgè bìxū) for a “healthy and normal” relationship between Beijing and Taipei:

I am calling on China that it must face the reality of the existence of the Republic of China (Taiwan); it must respect the commitment of the 23 million people of Taiwan to freedom and democracy; it must handle cross-strait differences peacefully, on a basis of equality; and it must be governments or government-authorized agencies that engage in negotiations. These “four musts” are the most basic and crucial foundations that will determine whether cross-strait relations develop in a positive direction.

About 24 hours later, General Secretary Xí Jìnpíng 习近平 gave a speech to mark the “40th Anniversary of the Chinese Mainland’s Message to Compatriots in Taiwan” (Xinhua report, full text of speech in Chinese). The vision of Taiwan’s future he set out was irreconcilable with Tsai’s. Some key points:

  • Unification of China and Taiwan is “the great trend of history” and an important part of Xi’s China Dream of national rejuvenation. Taiwan’s status is, according to Xi, not up for any kind of negotiation.
  • Under a “one country, two systems” framework, “the social system and way of life in Taiwan will be fully respected, and the private property, religious beliefs and legitimate rights and interests of Taiwan compatriots will be fully protected after peaceful reunification is realized,” promised Xi.
  • Xi made the laughable claim that “Chinese don’t fight Chinese,” which he rendered even more absurd by threatening Taiwan in his next breath: “We make no promise to renounce the use of force and reserve the option of taking all necessary means.”

Further reading:

—Jeremy Goldkorn

2. Trade war, day 181: Lighthizer may push for more tariffs

There is not much news in the U.S.-China trade war since last Friday, when we highlighted for Access members (paywall) that Foxconn may be moving a large amount of iPhone production to India and Vietnam. But two insightful pieces on Robert Lighthizer, the U.S. Trade Representative leading negotiations, have been published and are worth a read.

  • “Lighthizer remains deeply skeptical of Beijing and has warned Mr. Trump that the United States may need to exert more pressure through additional tariffs in order to win true concessions,” the New York Times reports (porous paywall).
  • “Lighthizer wants to limit China’s influence, even if he has to break the American-made economic order to do it,” the Atlantic says in an in-depth profile of his contrarian trade law career stretching back to the 1980s.

Both pieces indicate that Lighthizer is enjoying immense influence in the Trump administration at the moment. “Lighthizer is still riding a NAFTA high within the administration,” the Atlantic writes, referring to the North American Free Trade Agreement, recently renegotiated as the United States–Mexico–Canada Agreement, though not yet approved by the U.S. Congress. The Times adds that Lighthizer has a waterfront condo in Palm Beach, Florida, very near Trump’s Mar-a-Lago resort, so he accompanies the president on his frequent wintertime golfing retreats.

Another piece of significant U.S.-China news also comes from the New York Times:

  • All of the “more than 20” American cultural centers established at Chinese universities in the past decade are now closed, after interference by Chinese authorities, the Times reports (porous paywall).
  • “From January 2016 to April 2017, there were 153 instances of Chinese thwarting the work of the American public affairs officials, including with the centers,” according to a State Department inspector general report. Former ambassador Max Baucus and current ambassador Terry Branstad were both denied access to American cultural centers at Chinese universities.
  • Meanwhile, in the U.S., some Chinese-government-funded Confucius Institutes have been closed by universities in FloridaNorth CarolinaMichigan, and other states, though dozens remain open. Outside of the U.S., Confucius Institutes continue to rapidly spread.

More links related to U.S.-China relations, including the detentions of Canadians and indicators in the Chinese economy:

—Lucas Niewenhuis

3. ‘Food God’ blasted for trashing Chinese hotpot(cải làn)

Hong Kong-based food critic Chua Lam (蔡澜 Cài Lán) has stirred up a ruckus on the Chinese internet after criticizing Chinese hotpot, saying that it’s “a cooking method totally lacking cultural significance.”

Chua is a famed restaurant critic, a TV personality, and the author of several best-selling books; he is also sometimes called the “Food God” (食神 shíshén) in Chinese culinary circles. He made the controversial remarks during an appearance on the talk show Day Day Up (天天向上 tiāntiān xiàngshàng), which was broadcast on Hunan Television over the New Year holiday. When asked by one of the hosts what dishes he would love to see disappear from the world, Chua said, “Hotpot.”

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