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Ma Ying-Jeou slates to receive Eisenhower Medallion from the People to People International (PTPI) NGO for his efforts to maintain stability in the East Asian region via his East China Sea Peace Initiative. People to People International was originally founded by American President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1956 under the banner of the US Information Agency, but later privatized as an NGO in 1961. The initiative calls for the settling of disputes through adherence to international law, dialogue, and refraining from aggressive action—an agreement inked with Japan to allow Taiwanese fishing vessels to fish in a 12 nautical mile belt of disputed fishing grounds between Taiwan and Japan near the Senkaku/Diaoyutai Islands has been seen as an example of the policy in action. Such a move did not sit well with China when it had previously looked as if Taiwan would side with mainland China against Japan in Senkaku/Diaoyutai Island dispute.
The policy has received positive from US and EU as well as American academics and Ma’s winning of the Eisenhower Medallion may indicate continued faith by American policymakers in the foreign policies advanced under the Ma administration, yet a second glance would suggest once more that the award gestures towards closer ties between the US, Japan, and Taiwan in order to counter Chinese expansion. While past winners of the award include Nobel Peace Prize winners Desmond Tutu and Mother Teresa, and Medecins Sans Frontieres (Doctors Without Borders), some have decried Ma’s winning of the Eisenhower Medallion, given his history of undemocratic domestic policies. Yet, of course, in larger considerations of East Asia from an American perspective, perhaps it is that Taiwanese domestic issues take a back seat to issues of East Asian international relations.
馬英九贏了Eisenhower Medallion從People to People International (PTPI)關於他為了維持東亞區的區穩定的政策。PTPI是美國總統艾森豪威爾1956年建立在美國政府下面的組織，但是1961年改成NGO。不過從這個來看，可能是代表美國政策制定者還支持馬英九的外交政策在會讓台灣靠美國跟日本的部分，因為馬英九的政策關於釣魚台列嶼是跟日本政府妥協，不是跟中國合作反對日本政府。另外，因為得到Eisenhower Medallion的人包括得到諾貝爾和平獎的人，例如德斯蒙德·圖圖，特蕾莎修女，等等，也可能代表對美國不管馬英九在台灣內政方面做什麼動作，如果外交政策對美國如何，內政不重要了。
Brian Hioe (丘琦欣) is an M.A. student at Columbia University, a freelance writer on politics and social activism, and an occasional translator. He is formerly a resident of Taipei, Taiwan.
Photo credit: Chi Chih-hsian/Want China Times