On Thursday last week, there was a big parade inTaipei to honor the Taiwanese athletes who competed at the Taipei SummerUniversiade.
About 200 athletes and coaches were honored asTaiwanese heroes and praised by President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文)at the Presidential Office.
People lining the route waved flags, shouting:“You are the best,” and “Heroes, heroes,” and making thumbs-up gestures.
They are indeed Taiwanese heroes, havingachieved an outstanding record with 26 golds, 34 silvers and 30 bronzes, aswell as setting several Asian records, and the athletes were proud to keep themedals in their homeland.
Yes, the athletes are proud of their homelandand so is Taipei Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲),who mentioned Taiwan 11 times in his impassioned closing speech, whichundoubtedly touched whoever listened to it.
He gave credit to those involved in theoperation of the Games, and thanked to all the athletes, volunteers andvisitors.
“Taiwan is a success story. Taipei is a gloriouscity. Formosa, beautiful island, will continue to sail the world as courageous,open-minded island-dwellers. Once again, we thank the world for visitingTaiwan. Thank you,” Ko said.
It was surprising to see that in the officialEnglish version of his speech there was no mention of “Taiwan,” except for thephrase “across northern Taiwan.”
While Ko proudly mentioned Taiwan in his speechin Mandarin he ordered his security forces to remove anyone who brought aTaiwanese flag.
Chen Yu-chang (陳俞璋),a Cheng Kung University architecture student holding a banner with the text“Taiwan” on it, was attacked by a group of black-shirted men showing no ID, whoarrested him and took him to a police station for disturbing social order.
According to the Lausanne Agreement, theInternational Olympic Committee (IOC) announced on March 23, 1981, that Taiwancan participate in the Olympic Games after changing the name, flag and emblemof its national Olympic committee.
It only restricted the use of the term Republicof China and its flag, not banners with the text Taiwan printed on them.
What was the standard operating procedure forthe Taipei Universiade?
At the opening ceremony, police allowed pensionreform protest groups to violate the Lausanne Agreement by carrying nationalflags and blocking athletes from entering the stadium, while confiscating allbanners containing the word “Taiwan.”
We all remember that Ko likes standardprocedures very much; that is why he won the mayoral election.
However, what were his procedures for theUniversiade?
He publicly violated the Lausanne Agreement,then allowed unknown black-shirted men to attack and arrest people carryingbanners containing the word “Taiwan.”
Police said the men were military police, whichis even worse.
How could the military police be allowed toattack and arrest a civilian? Is Taiwan under martial law again?
On the day Taiwan’s heroes paraded throughTaipei, people lined up along the streets waving flags associated with theTaiwanese independence movement, as well as Republic of China and Olympicflags.
That was natural, seeing people holding flagsrepresenting their beliefs and showing their respect for their heroes. That isreal freedom.
Now, the Universiade is over, but a lot ofincidents need to be reviewed.
On Saturday last week, a reporter asked Ko aboutan Argentine athlete carrying the Republic of China flag during the closingceremony.
“I want to inform China first, it had nothing to do withus, it was done by Argentina,” Ko said.
Koclearly cares most about China.
We nowknow what Ko’s new standard procedure is: China first, not Taiwan.