Wei Jingsheng Foundation News and Article Release Issue: A734-W461

魏京生基金会新闻与文章发布号: A734-W461


Release Date: September 22, 2012



Topic: The Diaoyu Islands Dispute -- Wei Jingsheng

标题:钓鱼岛争议 -- 魏京生


Original Language Version: Chinese (Chinese version at the end)



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The Diaoyu Islands Dispute

 -- Wei Jingsheng



It has been a real buzz since September.  First, Xi Jinping disappeared.  Later, it was the issue of the Diaoyu Islands (also called the Senkaku Islands in Japan, Tiaoyutai Islands in Taiwan, and the Pinnacle Islands.).  There have been all sorts of violence and vandalism except killings regarding the Diaoyu Islands in China. Some angry youth yelled murderous slogans, and even the Communist Party-controlled media threatened to drop nuclear weapons.  This issue has been there for years, but why is there so much trouble now?


One news medium in the USA did have the vision to directly point out that the new trouble was due to domestic political needs in both China and Japan.  Japan is facing a general election.  In the past few years, on average Japan has changed to a new prime minister every year.  As a result, the political situation is very unstable and the economy has been affected seriously.  It is understandable that the incumbent Prime Minister hopes for an election victory to stabilize the political situation, which is very important for both Japan's political and people's interests.


To win the election it is necessary to gather public will.  Under the premise that the different political parties and groups do not present platforms able to distinguish the opponent, Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's campaign team thought of the Diaoyu Islands issue.  This issue has been speculated high and hotly by the political right wing in Japan.  Bringing it forward would be patriotic and politically correct.  Thus, grabbing the topic in their own hands for their own favor would be easy.  The predecessors of the Prime Minister had already played this topic with lucrative outcomes and no problems.  Thus, the latest politicians boldly came up with a bigger move calling for nationalization of the islands.  Their plan was to use the country's money to try to buy the islands from the so-called private owners, to realize this nationalization.


Unfortunately, Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's luck is not good enough, at least not as good as his predecessors'.  He also admitted an error of judgment on the situation.  This time, the Chinese Communist regime, that was always weak to the outside world, actually reacted surprisingly strongly.  Not only were there angry youth that "rebelled" under the decree and began doing all sorts of violence and vandalism under the command of the police and officials; even the official reaction from the Communist government was unusual, to the degree that it even directly suggested to solve the issue with nuclear weapons.  To the Japanese people who are the only ones who have suffered through the hazards of nuclear weapons, this threat is a great psychological pressure.


Why has the Communist regime been extremely low-key before, but now is overreacting?  It is very unusual.  Both Mao Zedong (the head of the People's Republic of China) and Chiang Kai-shek (the head of the Republic of China) did not accept these islands as the outcome of World War II.  Later, the Communist leader Deng Xiaoping almost directly gave up the rights of the dispute.  He unilaterally claimed to shelve the dispute, which was actually a face-saving method of abandonment.  It was like a street hooligan who could not win over his opponent, so he retreats while still making some tough claims, such as "wait for me, do not leave".  That was just a face-saving withdrawal.


Now, suddenly the Communist regime plays tough and seems ready to attack.  Why so?  Unlike Yoshihiko Noda, Xi Jinping does not need to wait for enough votes to ascend the throne.  Why would he uncharacteristically attack?  Western media and scholars do not understand it.  It is because they do not understand the characteristics of China's authoritarian politics, and thus do not understand why the status-defined Xi Jinping would take such a big risk.


Among the first four generations of Chinese Communist leaders, Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping were strong leaders while Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao were vulnerable leaders.  Mao Zedong had his authority established during the war years (before the establishment of the People's Republic of China).  Deng Xiaoping did not have that kind of authority, so his first action when he came to power was to initiate a war (against Vietnam), in order to establish his own authority and to strengthen his position.  Thus, Deng was able to rule the country with an iron-fist and become a real dictator.  Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao did not have war.  They were unable to establish enough authority in the Communist system where the military power is the regime, and thus they became vulnerable leaders.


Described by the Hong Kong media as a mediocre leader, Xi Jinping had no choice but to fight a war, modeled on the examples of his predecessors.  Such action would establish Xi's authority within the military and within the Communist Party, allowing him to become a dictator in the true sense, get rid of the so-called collective responsibility, and to do the things he wants to do.  As he was getting ready to sleep, Yoshihiko Noda delivered Xi a suitable pillow.


But is this pillow really appropriate?  Not necessarily.  Does Xi Jinping really want a war?  If this is true, Japan would not be Vietnam, and the United States would not be the Soviet Union.  Even for Deng Xiaoping back then, as soon as the Soviet Union threatened, Deng ran backward in a panic and eventually ceded a large territory to Vietnam.  Fortunately, at that time Deng was able to boast himself while blocking the true information, and so reached his goal of establishing authority over the Chinese people.


Relatively speaking, Japan today is far more powerful than Vietnam was back then.  The US-Japan Security Treaty is not comparable to the random oral alliance in between the Soviet Union and Vietnam.  Before the War starts, we can already predict the results.  How to finish it then would be a big problem.  So although on the surface the Chinese communist government appears to be menacing, claiming that it has sent more than a dozen official boats and naval ships to the islands, in reality, these ships are just wondering around in international waters -- they are just probing and testing, without the guts to really initiate a war.


Japan is not the Philippines.  It is not a country that would soften and admit defeat when it is threatened.  If the Chinese Communists do not stop before going too far and continue this deadlock, they may not have a good conclusion from overly inciting patriotism.  When both sides hold their own opinions, without compromise and without reason, then each can only rely on actual strength.  By then, there is only one way -- that is the Communist regime admits defeat and be disgraced.  Then, Xi Jinping will have to step down.  Then the Communist Party will be like a dragon without its head, leading to a vicious struggle for power resulting in chaos.  This may not necessarily be bad result.


Through the June 4 Massacre in 1989, Deng Xiaoping was able to insure the Communist regime for 20 more years.  Xi Jinping wants to beat up Japan to insure the Communist regime for another 20 years.  Unfortunately, misjudging the situation would not only result in disaster for the Chinese, but also bring negative impact to the peace in East Asia and the world.  Xi could be condemned in history like Deng Xiaoping.


In the past, the Chinese Communist Party gave up sovereignty and jurisdiction, and later it gave up the right to dispute these islands.  Now, the most it may do is re-open the dispute and sit down for negotiation.  Shelving disputes will not get the issues solved by passing them to the next generation.  Only through argument on the basis of reason could the issue be resolved.  The fact that Japan has been continuously hyping the Diaoyu Islands issue itself illustrates that it knows that this is a controversial issue.  Even if this issue cannot be solved now, it will be solved eventually.


Using international disputes as a political operation to resolve domestic problems and even incite ethnic chauvinism mood is an extremely dangerous practice.  There were many wars that started from such actions.  From the point of avoiding people's loss of lives and property in these countries, war is always a bad thing, not a good thing.



To hear Mr. Wei Jingsheng's related commentary, please visit:



(Written on September 20 and recorded on September 21, 2012.  Broadcasted by Radio Free Asia.)



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Wei Jingsheng Foundation News and Article Release Issue: A734-W461

魏京生基金会新闻与文章发布号: A734-W461


Release Date: September 22, 2012



Topic: The Diaoyu Islands Dispute -- Wei Jingsheng

标题:钓鱼岛争议 -- 魏京生


Original Language Version: Chinese (Chinese version at the end)









-- 魏京生







想要选举胜利就要聚拢民意。在各党各派都没有什么新鲜货色可以区别于对手的前提下,野田佳彦的助选班子想到了被右派炒作得很火的钓鱼岛问题。反正是爱国主 义,政治正确。把话题抢在自己手里玩几把,非常容易。他的前几任也玩过钓鱼岛的话题,获利颇丰而且没出什么问题。所以就大胆地搞出一些大动作,叫做国有化。用国家的钱从所谓的岛主手里买下了钓鱼岛,算是对钓鱼岛实现了国有化。



































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