Fri, Mar 07, 2014 - Page 8 News List

[ LETTER ]

Investigate 228 criminals

Right after arriving in Taiwan in the spring of 1947, Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) troops started what is now known as the 228 Incident by machine-gunning Taiwanese indiscriminately on streets, executing many of the local elite in public, shooting wire-strung Taiwanese in groups and dumping bodies into the sea. In these scenes, KMT troops — an Allied occupation force — participated in slaughtering peaceful protesters.

This constitutes an ethnic cleansing of Taiwanese by Chinese — it is an atrocity, like those committed by the Nazis against the Jews and by the Khmer Rouge against Cambodians.

The Nazi leadership faced Allied tribunals for their crimes, while Khmer Rouge officials are being held responsible by the UN-backed Cambodia Tribunal.

However, to this day, not a single KMT official has taken responsibility or stood trial for the brutal crime against humanity that was the 228 Massacre.

To whitewash the Incident, the KMT government designated Feb. 28 — the day the 1947 massacre began — as national Peace Memorial Day and provided tax-funded indemnity to the victims’ families. Recently, the party’s premier called the incident “a careless mistake” and apologists deemed the atrocity “a minor case.”

Despite this, many Taiwanese still attached themselves to the KMT and benefited from its association. Despite this, many Taiwanese live as second-class citizens and work like slaves to support the KMT government, which uses their tax dollars to subsidize an 18 percent interest rate for its support base.

Sixty-seven years have passed since that fateful spring and there has still not been justice for those killed in the slaughter. Perhaps Taiwanese need to find another venue in which to air their grievances and take the case to the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

Only when justice is served will 228 Memorial Day truly be a peaceful day for the victims of the massacre and for Taiwanese in general.

John Yang

Ohio

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