The response of Sanchong Mayor Lee Chien-lung (李乾龍) to the central government's order to fly flags at half mast in remembrance of the 228 Incident ("Remembering 228: Poor timing leads to flag-flying blunder," March 1, page 4) is sadly typical of a party that still feels it committed no error in slaughtering thousands of Taiwanese, no matter what its pop-star leader might say. It is typical of their determination to avoid looking at the past, because it is colored with the blood of the Taiwanese they had so contemptuously co-opted into their narrow political agenda for 40 years.
Should we also not remember the Holocaust because it is a "sad memory" for so many? Perhaps we should also not remember the Japanese actions in Nanjing, the Serbian actions in Kosovo, the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, and the British in India and South Africa?
It is not surprising that many pan-blue camp members and supporters don't want the Taiwanese to remember the history of this country, since it sheds such a bad light on their capability for ruthlessness, selfishness and opportunism. Not only are we instructed not to remember "sad" memories (and thereby not learn from them either), but we are also instructed to not hope for a future in which Taiwanese determine their own affairs. According to Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Chairman Ma (Mao?) Ying-jeou (
So much for democracy.
But, as the 228 Incident illustrates, that was and is not something that the KMT considers important or beneficial. Reconciliation is an honest and needed process, but how can that begin when the KMT still can't face its own actions? It would rather we all developed amnesia. It also hopes we can all develop Alzheimer's as well so that we won't be able to see the utterly cowardly and shamefaced way it intends to sell out Taiwan as soon as it regains power.
Perhaps we should demand that Ma must recognize the sovereignty of Taiwan before he is even allowed to stand for the office of president. But, knowing him, he'll find a slippery way to say it without meaning it.
Well done, President Chen Shui-bian (陳水扁), on abolishing the National Unification Council and unification guidelines. Now is the time to embed this great country's independence and sovereignty before the people are fear-mongered into a really bad decision in 2008.
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