Dear Mr. Trent Lott,
Mr. Newt Gingrich,
Mr. Vice President Al Gore,
For decades, Taiwan has been virtually ignored by the international community.
Relegated to the status of an outdated side-show as a by-product of the Chinese civil war.
But starting under the rule of former President Chiang Ching-Kuo and continuing in full
force under Lee, democratization has taken off quickly, turning Taiwan's political scene
from an old-folks home into a vibrant, often dramatic three-ring circus.
For the 20 years since then, the Taiwan Relations Act has stood as the law of the land
of the United States. It is a unique document governing a unique relationship for which
there is no precedent in the history of U.S., or any other nation. It has worked
remarkable well, providing continuity to Relations between the U.S. and the ROC. It has
stood the test of time throughout many changes and challenges, and in certain respects,
may well have performed above, and beyond the expectations of the original drafters.
Taiwan trade with the United States has grown spectacularly; in 1978, bilateral trade
between the ROC and the U.S. stood at a mere US$7.3 billion, in 1997, this figure was
US$52.8 billion. Taiwan is now the United States' seventh largest trading partner.
As for Taiwan's contributions to the U.S. economy. We estimate that taken together,
Taiwan imports of American goods and services. Taiwan investment in the United States, and
Taiwan travel dollars spent in America created more than 800,000 jobs in the U.S. in 1997.
In 1979, the ROC began allowing citizens to travel abroad as tourist, and in 1980,
residents of Taiwan made 13,847 trips to the U.S., in 1997, over 588,000 trips were taken.
As for education, there are currently over 30,000 students from Taiwan studying in the
U.S. cultural, scientific, technological and other exchanges, too, have been frequent.
For Asian states, it is China, a serious nuclear power and major proliferator. So when
the United States turns a blind eye to China's military build up, it's not only Taiwan but
also Japan, South Korea, and other American friends who begin to consider nuclear
We hope that; Washington and Beijing must abandon fantasies about
"reunification" and find a middle way for Taiwan, while the United States
rejects a Taiwan nuclear option. Its support for Taiwan's security and its democratic
system is not in doubt.
The truth was speaking; the fundamental challenge to Asian security right
now is the military rise of an autocratic China, that is what drives China's
neighbors to reconsider nuclear options.
So that, Taiwan need your support.