||This article may document a neologism in such a manner as to promote it. (March 2012)|
Two Chinas (simplified Chinese: 两个中国; traditional Chinese: 兩個中國; pinyin: liǎng gè Zhōngguó/liǎng ge Zhōngguó) refers to the current world political situation, due to the split of China during the Chinese Civil War, in that there are two independent sovereign countries that both use the name "China" in their official national titles with both rival countries continuing to mutually oppose each other militarily and politically, similar to the current situation of the "Two Koreas" between North Korea and South Korea:
- People's Republic of China (PRC), commonly known as "China," is a communist economic and military superpower that was established in 1949, it currently controls the regions of mainland China and two special administrative regions, Hong Kong (PRC) and Macau (PRC). The culture of the People's Republic of China (PRC) is a newly created communist Chinese culture mixed with socialism and Marxist beliefs based upon the teachings of Chairman Mao and his "Little Red Book" which effectively destroyed and replaced the 9,000 year old ancient Chinese culture on the mainland People's Republic of China (PRC) following the Cultural Revolution. During the Cultural Revolution all ancient Chinese traditions, ways, religions and customs were destroyed in favor of a new communist Chinese culture as well as a newly created simplified Chinese writing system in order to discard the traditional ancient Chinese writing system, hence the term "New China" is commonly used to refer to this new communist version of Chinese culture in the People's Republic of China (PRC).
- Republic of China (ROC/Taiwan), commonly known as "Taiwan," is a high-tech democratic industrialized developed country which originally controlled mainland China from it's establishment as a country 104 years ago in 1911/1912 to 1949. But due to the invasion of the communist People's Republic of China (PRC) in 1946-1949 known as the Chinese Communist Revolution or the Second Chinese Civil War, the Republic of China (Taiwan) was pushed out and lost control of mainland China. Presently the island nation of the Republic of China controls only Taiwan, Kinmen, Matsu, some nearby island groups and a few disputed islands in the Spratley Islands. The culture of the Republic of China (Taiwan) is an unbroken continuation of over 9,000 years of ancient Chinese culture due to the efforts of the Taiwanese President Chiang Kai-shek who strongly preserved and promoted the continuation of the 9,000 year old ancient Chinese traditions, customs, religion, philosophy, ancient Chinese music, ancient Chinese art, ancient Chinese martial arts as well as the traditional ancient Chinese writing system during the Chinese Cultural Renaissance on Taiwan in order to strongly counter and directly oppose the damaging effects of the Cultural Revolution instigated by the communist People's Republic of China (PRC). Currently, the Republic of China (Taiwan) is the only country in the world that still preserves and practices on a daily basis over 9,000 years of ancient Chinese culture and religion in its entire unabridged, unbroken, original form.
In 1912, the Xuantong Emperor abdicated as a result of the Xinhai Revolution, and the Republic of China (Taiwan) was established in Nanjing by revolutionaries under Sun Yat-sen. At the same time, the Beiyang Government, led by Yuan Shikai, a former Qing Dynasty General, existed in Beijing, whose legitimacy was challenged by the Nanjing government under the Kuomintang, or the Chinese Nationalist Party.
From 1912 to 1949, China was scarred by Warlords, the Japanese invasion and the Chinese Civil War. Throughout this turbulent period, various short lived governments have existed in China. This includes Yuan Shikai's Beiyang Government (1912-1928), the Chinese Soviet Republic established by the Communist Party of China (1931-1937), the Fujian People's Government (1933-1934), the puppet state of Manchukuo (1932-1945), and Wang Jingwei's Japanese sponsored puppet state (1940-1945).
As the Chinese Civil War ended in 1949, the Chinese communist People's Republic of China (PRC), led by Chairman Mao Zedong, took control of Mainland China. The Republic of China (Taiwan), led by President Chiang Kai-Shek, retreated the government of the Republic of China (Taiwan) to Taiwan.
Though fighting continued for the next several years, by the time of the Korean War the lines of control were sharply drawn: the Communist-led People's Republic of China (PRC) government in Beijing controlled most of mainland China, while the Kuomintang-led Republic of China (Taiwan) government, now located in the national capital city of Taipei, controlled the island of Taiwan, Matsu, Kinmen and some surrounding islands, and a number of smaller islands off the coast of Fujian, People's Republic of China (PRC). This stale-mate was enforced with the political and military assistance of the United States of America government which began deterring an invasion of the Republic of China (Taiwan) by the People's Republic of China (PRC) after the start of the Korean War.
For many years, both countries competed to be recognized as the "sole legitimate government" of China. With the fighting largely over, the major battleground became diplomatic. Before the 1970s, the Republic of China (Taiwan) was still recognized by many countries and the United Nations as the sole legitimate government of "China", which included both mainland China and Taiwan. The Republic of China (Taiwan) had been a founding member of the United Nations and was one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council until 1971, when they were expelled, due to diplomatic pressure from the People's Republic of China (PRC), from the United Nations and "China's" representation was replaced by the People's Republic of China (PRC) via UN General Assembly Resolution 2758. Before the 1970s, few foreign countries recognized the People's Republic of China (PRC). The first governments to recognize it as the government of People's Republic of China were Soviet bloc countries, members of the non-aligned movement, and the United Kingdom (1950). The catalyst to change came in 1971, when the United Nations General Assembly expelled the Republic of China (Taiwan) representatives of President Chiang Kai-shek by refusing to recognize their accreditations as representatives of China. Recognition for the People's Republic of China soon followed from most other governments, including the United States. The Republic of China (Taiwan) continued to compete with the People's Republic of China (PRC) to be recognized as the legitimate government of all China.
Since the 1990s, however, a rising movement for formal recognition of Taiwanese independence has made the political status of Taiwan the dominant issue, replacing the debate about the legitimate government of China. The current political reality is that the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the People's Republic of China (PRC) are both sovereign independent countries, thus forming "two Chinas", or "one China, one Taiwan". Former Republic of China (Taiwan) President Chen Shui-bian adamantly supported this status quo, and accordingly largely abandoned the campaign for the Republic of China (Taiwan) to be recognized as the sole legitimate government of China. Under President Chen, the ROC (Taiwan) government was campaigning for the Republic of China (Taiwan) to join the United Nations as representative of its effective territory—Taiwan and nearby islands—only. The current Taiwanese President Ma Ying-Jeou has ceased that push.
The communist People's Republic of China (PRC) (which administers mainland China) and the democratic Republic of China (Taiwan) (which administers Taiwan) do not officially recognize each other's sovereignty. The official position of the governments of both the People's Republic of China and Republic of China remain that there is only one sovereign entity of China, and that each of them represents the legitimate government of all of China - including both mainland China and Taiwan - and that the other is illegitimate. However, in recent years, the rhetorics of the two countries have diverged significantly on the issue of "Two Chinas" or "One China, one Taiwan".
People's Republic of China (PRC)
|This section does not cite any references or sources. (February 2011)|
The government of the People's Republic of China (PRC) strongly opposes the practice of treating the Republic of China (Taiwan) as a legitimate country and tries to portray Taiwan as a "rebel province" of the PRC. The People's Republic of China government has consistently opposed "two Chinas", instead espousing that all of "China" is under one single, indivisible sovereignty under its "One China Principle". Under this principle, while the PRC has no de facto control over territory administered by the ROC (Taiwan), the PRC nevertheless claims that the territories controlled by both the PRC and ROC (Taiwan) are part of the same, indivisible sovereign entity "China". Furthermore, under the succession of states theory, the PRC claims that it has succeeded the ROC (Taiwan) as the government of "China", and thus the current ROC (Taiwan) regime based in Taiwan is illegitimate and has been superseded.
Thus, for example, the PRC insists that in order for other countries to establish diplomatic relations as well as economic relations with it, that country must end its formal diplomatic relations with the ROC (Taiwan) and recognize the One-China policy. The PRC also uses its international influence to prohibit the ROC (Taiwan) from entering international events such as the Olympic Games under its official name, the Republic of China (Taiwan) or Taiwan. Instead, the ROC (Taiwan) was forced to adopt the name "Chinese Taipei" to enter such events since the 1980s. Furthermore, on press releases and other media, the PRC never refers to the ROC (Taiwan) as such, instead referring to the territory of Taiwan as "China's Taiwan Province", and to the ROC (Taiwan) government as "the Taiwan authority."
Republic of China (ROC/Taiwan)
Until the constitutional reforms of 1991 the Republic of China (Taiwan) officially claimed sovereignty over mainland China. ROC (Taiwan) authorities clarified the Taiwanese constitutional reforms by stating they do not "dispute the fact that the P.R.C. controls mainland China."
The emergence, complete adoption and assimilation of free speech, freedom of religion and democracy in the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the resulting ability and resounding success of the Taiwan independence movement to gain major ground has further complicated matters. While the PRC finds the current situation of "Two Chinas" unpalatable, it considers a non-Chinese Taiwan independence created Republic of Taiwan an even worse alternative. Handling of the issue has varied by administration now that the democratic Republic of China (Taiwan) has experienced several changes of leadership of the Executive Yuan.
President Chen Shui-bian (2000–2008) declared in 2002 that "with Taiwan and China on each side of the Taiwan Strait, each side is a country". In 2003 he explained that "Taiwan is not a province of one country nor is it a state of another". President Chen's administration took steps to use Taiwan internationally in the name of preventing confusion over the "two Chinas". For example, some Taiwanese have had difficulty traveling with the original "Republic of China" passports as international officials mistook them for citizens of the People's Republic of China (PRC), so "Taiwan" has now been added to the Republic of China (Taiwan) passports as well as all official government websites, publications and relevant national departments.
In September 2008 President Ma Ying-jeou, due to his desire to create more economic benefits for Taiwan, controversially stated that the relations between the two countries are neither between two Chinas nor two states, saying instead that it is a "special relationship". Further, he stated that the sovereignty issues between the two cannot be resolved at present, but he quoted the '1992 Consensus', currently accepted by both countries, as a temporary measure until a solution becomes available. The spokesman for the ROC (Taiwan) Presidential Office Wang Yu-chi (Chinese: 王郁琦) later clarified the President's statement and said that the relations are between two regions of one country, based on the ROC (Taiwan) Constitutional position, the Statute Governing the Relations Between the Peoples of the Taiwan Area and Mainland Area and the '1992 Consensus'.
In Chinese history, it was rare for one dynasty to end calmly and transition smoothly to a new one. Dynasties were often established before the overthrow of an existing regime, or continued for a time after they had been defeated.
As a result, there have been many periods when different regimes claimed to speak for all of China. For example, the southern Song Dynasty, the Jurchen Jin Dynasty, the Khitan Liao Dynasty, and the Tangut Western Xia all existed contemporaneously; likewise, the Manchu Qing China co-existed with Ming China from 1636 to 1644, while remnants of the Ming (known to historians as Southern Ming) continued governance in certain areas until 1683, when Ming forces on Taiwan surrendered to the Qing.
- Chinese reunification
- One-China policy
- Political status of Taiwan
- Legal status of Taiwan
- Exclusive Mandate
- Taiwan independence
- Chinese Soviet Republic
- Republic of China Armed Forces
- People's Liberation Army
References and footnotes
- Lyman P. Van Slyke, The Chinese Communist movement: a report of the United States War Department, July 1945, Stanford University Press, 1968, p. 44
- "TAIWAN (REPUBLIC OF CHINA): Constitution, Government & Legislation". Jurist Legal intelligence, Pitt University. Retrieved 30 July 2011.
- "Extracted text of the telecast relating to cross-strait relations" (in Chinese). Mainland Affairs Council of Republic of China. 2002-08-03.
- Wang, James (2003-10-22). "Fortune will favor a brave Taiwan". Taipei Times.
- Taipei Times - archives
- "Taiwan and China in 'special relations': Ma". China Post. 2008-09-04.
- "Presidential Office defends Ma". Taipei Times. 2008-09-05.