"Pay close attention to that man behind the curtain!"

Saturday, March 19, 2005

The difference between 319 and 326 is more than simply "a week"

Know your enemies

Today marking one year since Taiwan's President Chen Shui-bian and V-P Annette Lu were shot just one day before being re-elected, opposition supporters called to demonstrate by KMT chairman (and crybaby loser presidential candidate in the same election) Lien Chan gathered in front of the KMT headquarters to hear him continue to whine about why he lost.

According to the images I saw on TV earlier today, I would estimate that there were fewer than 10,000 listening to Lien, but TVBS, Era News and CTI reported 100,000 in attendance. TVBS showed 2 young men in combat fatigues with the word "gan4" (Chinese for the exclamation "Fuck!") tied on their upper arms and helmets. I don't know if they had anything more to say. TVBS is also playing a special pre-commercial bumper today that uses low-quality CGI to fire a bullet into Chen's chest. (No wonder I prefer to call them BS-TV. Chen was actually grazed across the abdomen.) You can see their milder "bullethole" graphic on the image at the top of this page.

Speaking to those at today's event, Lien seemed aimless in a zombified Reaganesque sort of way. At one point, he had trouble enunciating the words "zhen1 xiang1" ("truth"), instead saying "zhong1..." before stopping himself just in time from saying "Zhong1 Guo2" ("China"). He doesn't have a monopoly on the desire for the truth. Supporters of President Chen would like to know for sure who shot him and why, but nobody on the pan-green side is simply making shit up without any evidence to back it up.

China's National People's Congress just passed a poorly-named law this past Monday in an attempt to legislate its desire to arbitrarily decide to use "non-peaceful means" (i.e., military force) to determine the fate of the people of Taiwan, and pan-greens burned China's flag in response the next day. Today, I saw the pan-blues burning the flag of Taiwan's Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

The pan-greens have also planned a large-scale demonstration, but have scheduled it for next Saturday, March 26, 2005, I'd assume to avoid conflicts with today's whine-fest, to avoid the association with today's unfortunate anniversary, and to actually organize something meaningful.

As opposed to the pan-blues' gathering which is based on what they imagine as the reason they lost the presidential election last year, the pan-greens' rally is based on a genuine threat to Taiwan's security -- a threat that will not disappear with the KMT back in power. Visit the links below for more information about the "326" anti-aggression/anti-annexation rally.

* 326 March for Democracy and Peace!
* Alliance for Democracy, Peace, and the Protection of Taiwan [My correction of what they call "The Alliance of 'Democracy, Peace, Protect Taiwan'"]
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