Faz mais de 50 anos que Taiwan existe, como uma realidade política inegável. O país é apenas dois anos mais novo do que as Nações Unidas, que, hipocritamente, insistem em negar-lhe o reconhecimento.
A China insiste que Taiwan é parte dela. Os britânicos já lhe cederam Hong Kong e os portugueses, Macau. Mas a China não está contente: quer Taiwan também. E como a China é uma potência, segundo vários critérios, populacionais e econômicos, quase todo mundo tem medo de ofender a ela — e, assim, vota contra as várias iniciativas que Taiwan tem feito para conseguir direito de cidadania na ONU.
Não tenho dúvida de que, não fossem os Estados Unidos, com sua força política, econômica e principalmente militar, Taiwan já seria parte da China — talvez uma parte meio qualificada, como Hong Kong e Macau (os chineses do continente precisam de visto para ir até Hong Kong e Macau). Não fossem os mesmos Estados Unidos, talvez Cingapura já tivesse se tornado parte da China também, ou, talvez, da Malásia, que está mais próxima.
Admiro os Estados Unidos por não permitirem isso (embora em 1971 os Estados Unidos, para agradar a China, tenha consentido que Taiwan ficasse fora das Nações Unidas, para poder endossar a entrada na China na organização, visto que a China só entrava se Taiwan fosse removida). Taiwan é um país independente da China há mais de meio século. Culturalmente, embora fale chinês, tornou-se uma cultura capitalista muito antes de a China. É uma potência econômica (e até mesmo militar). Só falta obter reconhecimento de sua realidade política autônoma e independente.
Vejam os artigos abaixo, de Matt Rosenberg, retirados de
Country, State, and Nation: Definining an Independent Country
While the terms country, state, and nation are often used interchangeably, there is a difference.
A State (note the capital "S") is a self-governing political entity. The term State can be used interchangeably with country.
A nation, however, is a tightly-knit group of people which share a common culture. A nation-state is a nation which has the same borders as a State.
States and Independent Countries
Let’s start with what defines a State or an independent country. An independent State:
- Has space or territory which has internationally recognized boundaries (boundary disputes are OK).
- Has people who live there on an ongoing basis.
- Has economic activity and an organized economy. A country regulates foreign and domestic trade and issues money.
Has the power of social engineering, such as education.
- Has a transportation system for moving goods and people.
- Has a government which provides public services and police power.
- Has sovereignty. No other State should have power over the country’s territory.
- Has external recognition. A country has been "voted into the club" by other countries.
There are currently 192 independent countries or States around the world. Territories of countries or individual parts of a country are not countries in their own right.
Examples of entities that are not countries include: Hong Kong, Bermuda, Greenland, Puerto Rico, and most notably the constituent parts of the United Kingdom. (Northern Ireland, Wales, Scotland, and England are not countries.) [EC: Veja abaixo a discussão do caso de Taiwan].
A "state" (with a lower-case "s") is usually a division of a federal State (such as the states of the United States of America).
Nations and Nation-States
Nations are culturally homogeneous groups of people, larger than a single tribe or community, which share a common language, institutions, religion, and historical experience.
When a nation of people have a State or country of their own, it is called a nation-state. Places like France, Egypt, Germany, Japan, and New Zealand are excellent examples of nation-states. There are some States which have two nations, such as Canada and Belgium. Even with its multicultural society, the United States is also referred to as a nation-state because of the shared American "culture."
There are nations without States. For example, the Kurds are stateless people.
Is Taiwan a Country? On Which of the Eight Criteria Does it Fail?
There are eight accepted criteria used to determine whether a place is an independent country (also known as a State with a capital "s") or not.
Let us examine these eight criteria in regard to Taiwan, an island (approximately the size of the U.S. states of Maryland and Delaware combined) located across the Taiwan Strait from mainland China (the People’s Republic of China).
Taiwan developed into its modern situation following the Communist victory on the mainland in 1949 when two million Chinese Nationalists fled to Taiwan and established a government for all of China on the island. From that point and until 1971, Taiwan was recognized as "China" in the United Nations.
Mainland China’s position on Taiwan is that there is only one China and that Taiwan is part of China; the People’s Republic of China is awaiting reunification of the island and mainland. However, Taiwan claims independence as a distinct State. We will now determine which is the case.
1. Has space or territory that has internationally recognized boundaries (boundary disputes are OK).
Somewhat. Due to political pressure from mainland China, the United States and most other significant nations recognize one China and thus include the boundaries of Taiwan as being part of the boundaries of China.
2. Has people who live there on an ongoing basis.
Absolutely! Taiwan is home to almost 23 million people, making it the 48th largest "county" in the world, with a population slightly smaller than North Korea but larger than Romania.
3. Has economic activity and an organized economy. A country regulates foreign and domestic trade and issues money.
Absolutely! Taiwan is an economic powerhouse – it’s one of the four economic tigers of Southeast Asia. Its GDP per capita is among the top 30 of the world. Taiwan has its own currency, the new Taiwan dollar.
4. Has the power of social engineering, such as education.
Absolutely! Education is compulsory and Taiwan has more than 150 institutions of higher learning. Taiwan is home to the Palace Museum, which houses over 650,000 pieces of Chinese bronze, jade, calligraphy, painting, and porcelain.
5. Has a transportation system for moving goods and people.
Absolutely! Taiwan has an extensive internal and external transportation network that consists of roads, highways, pipelines, railroads, airports, and sea ports. Taiwan can ship goods, there’s no question about that!
6. Has a government that provides public services and police power.
Absolutely! Taiwan has multiple branches of military – Army, Navy (including Marine Corps), Air Force, Coast Guard Administration, Armed Forces Reserve Command, Combined Service Forces Command, and Armed Forces Police Command. There are almost 400,000 active duty members of the military and the country spends about 15-16% of its budget on defense.
Taiwan’s main threat is from mainland China, which has approved an anti-secession law that allows a military attack on Taiwan to prevent the island from seeking independence. Additionally, the United States sells Taiwan military equipment and may defend Taiwan under the Taiwan Relations Act.
7. Has sovereignty. No other State should have power over the country’s territory.
Mostly. While Taiwan has maintained its own control over the island from Taipei since 1949, China still claims to have control over Taiwan.
8. Has external recognition. A country has been "voted into the club" by other countries.
Somewhat. Since China claims Taiwan as its provoince, the international community does not want to contradict China on this matter. Thus, Taiwan is not a member of the United Nations. Plus, only 25 countries (as of early 2007) recognize Taiwan as an independent country and they recognize it as the "only" China. Due to this political pressure from China, Taiwan does not maintain an embassy in the United States and the United States (among most other countries) has not recognized Taiwan since January 1, 1979.
However, many countries have set up unofficial organizations to carry out commercial and other relations with Taiwan. Taiwan is represented in 122 countries unofficially. Taiwan maintains contact with the United States through two through an unofficial instrumentalities – American Institute in Taiwan and the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office.
In addition, Taiwain issues globally recognized passports that allow its citizens to travel internationally. Taiwan also is a member of the International Olympic Committee and this sends its own team to the Olympic Games.
Recently, Taiwan has lobbied strongly for admission into international organizations such as the United Nations, which mainland China opposes.
Therefore, Taiwan only meets five of the eight criteria fully. Another three criteria are met in some respects due to mainland China’s stance on the issue.
In conclusion, despite the controversy surrounding the island of Taiwan, its status should be considered as a de facto independent country of the world.
Os vinte e poucos países que reconhecem Taiwan como um país autônomo e independente e mantêm relações diplomáticas com o país são todos pequenos e pouco significativos no cenário mundial. Vejam a lista deles — lista meio desatualizada, pois ali constam 24, quando os países hoje chegam, pelo que sei, a 27) na Wikipedia, no seguinte endereço:
Para seu crédito, o Vaticano está entre os países que reconhecem a autonomia e independência de Taiwan.
Quem não o reconhece o faz por motivos que não são nem ideológicos: são puramente pragmáticos (Realpolitk). Não querem incorrer na ira da China e na conseqüente (possível mas improvável) perda de negócios com a mega-potência econômica asiática.
O Brasil não reconhece Taiwan como país. Acho uma vergonha. Mas Taiwan tem um "Escritório Econômico e Cultural" em São Paulo, na Av. Paulista (do mesmo tipo do que mantém nos Estados Unidos), onde eu obtenho meus vistos de entrada no país.
Se a nossa diplomacia valesse alguma coisa, Taiwan já teria sido reconhecida como uma nação autônoma e independente.
Por fim, existe a questão: quando Taiwan se tornar politicamente reconhecida como um país autônomo e independente, como vai se chamar? Simplesmente Taiwan, como muitos (inclusive eu próprio, no dia-a-dia) chamam o país hoje? Republic of China (ROC), que é o nome semi-oficial (a companhia aérea oficial de Taiwan se chama "China Airlines"…)? Chinese Taipei, como querem os chineses? Ou simplesmente Formosa? Apesar de, no dia-a-dia, referir-me ao país como Taiwan, se eu pudesse votar certamente votaria em Formosa. Melhor ainda: Formosa Taiwan…
Em Hualien, TW, 25 de Agosto de 2007