Archive for the 'Politics' Category

Taiwan – Philippines high seas-turned-diplomatic-kerfuffle

I was speaking to folks back home and mentioned the recent incident between Taiwan and the Philippines in conversation.  This failed to elicit any response, which is when I realized that the western media hasn’t reported much of what happened, and people back home are unaware of this potentially explosive situation.  It’s huge news in Asia right now with every armchair pundit and blog commenting on it, so here’s a synopsis of what’s going on. Continue reading ‘Taiwan – Philippines high seas-turned-diplomatic-kerfuffle’

Taiwanese map gone wrong

Almost all the people I’ve met here will staunchly state they are Taiwanese, and NOT to be confused with their ill mannered, noisy, line-jumping Chinese cousins from the north.  Taiwanese people have a very strong national identity and loyalty to this sweet potato shaped island.  The continuous struggle they fight for sovereignty and international recognition has firmly shaped their views as being separate from China.  Or has it?

An article in the Taipei times brings to light an incident where principles and and national identity have taken a back seat to either cash-money or colossal stupidity.  Da Yu Publishing Co. has made a map that, “named it (Taiwan) a province of China and listing all five of Taiwan’s special municipalities as direct-controlled municipalities of China.” Continue reading ‘Taiwanese map gone wrong’

Taiwan and China

Before heading over to Asia, I had a very limited knowledge of the relationships between the countries here.  What I knew came from bits and pieces of stories from travellers.  In my uneducated world view, one went to South Korea to make money, Japan – to spend money, Thailand to party like a rockstar, China was red, Vietnam and Cambodia were super cheap and Taiwan was like a little cousin of China (…stupid…yeah, I know!  How wrong I was). Continue reading ‘Taiwan and China’

Discrimination in Taiwan’s citizenship laws

I recently found out that Taiwan has a blatantly unfair law regarding the naturalization of foreigners.

If you are a foreign national wishing to get Taiwanese citizenship, you have to give up your former national allegiance – this in itself, I can understand (national pride and solidarity and all that), BUT “natural” Taiwanese (those born here) are allowed to hold dual citizenship.  Double standard anyone?

This is a brazenly prejudiced stance to take.  Why do foreign nationals have to give up their former citizenship, while Taiwanese nationals are allowed to hold dual citizenship?  You can’t apply the law differently to people, and still consider it a fair law!  So while “natural” Taiwanese are granted the democratic freedom to hold dual citizenship, foreigners are treated akin to the people of China, Iraq and North Korea –  not being allowed to hold 2 passports.  And what about those who have Taiwanese spouses and children?  Those who, for all practical purposes, are permanently based in Taiwan? Continue reading ‘Discrimination in Taiwan’s citizenship laws’



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