Wed, Mar 20, 2019 - Page 8 News List

[ LETTER ]

Robust reporting

This reader was surprised and pleased to see the Taipei Times at the newsstand at 7-Eleven in Taipei and even happier to find it available daily at 7-Eleven and at FamilyMart here in Taichung; finding its reporting robust and its editorials thought-provoking, but sometimes omitting important facts, eg, Stephen Young’s editorial that concluded Hong Kongers will not actively resist communist rule (“What is Xi Jinping up to now?” Feb. 18, page 6). He neglected to report the “Umbrella movement,” the shorter Fishball Revolution or the annual candlelight Tiananmen Massacre memorial.

Young should have interviewed Former Causeway Bay Books manager Lam Wing-kee (林榮基) about the virtues, Young’s word, of Hong Kong life under People’s Republic of China rule.

Lam is a former Hong Kong bookseller who was grabbed in Hong Kong, abducted to China and, after being their guest in a mainland cell for five months, forced under duress to confess to his “crime.”

When this reader read your recent reference in an editorial to the 1984 Hong Kong handover treaty, this old cliche came to mind: “Past performance is best prediction of future behavior” (“China certain to break ‘peace treaty,’” March 9, page 8).

The marchers on March 10 in Taipei commemorating the 60th year since the 1959 uprising in Tibet bear witness to the kind control the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) would have for Taiwan under a “one China” policy. No list of deaths exists for the 1959 Tibet revolt, nor for the 1989 Tiananmen Square Massacre. These facts are nothing new to your readers.

It is sad to say that the only information the average American gets of the Far East is via Hollywood movies, eg, the Brad Pitt vehicle Seven Years in Tibet or music pop stars being banned by China because they met with the Dalai Lama or were perceived as supporting a free Tibet.

According to the South China Morning Pos, Katy Perry is persona non grata on the mainland for waving Taiwan’s flag at a concert in Taipei. (Beyonce’s husband, the rapper Jay-Z, was banned for “vulgar language.”)

The just-mentioned are fast-forgotten blips in the media stream.

This reader, a news junkie, only became aware of the Taipei 2014 Sunflower movement because of your paper’s recent interview with the director of a documentary about it.

This is Taiwan’s problem in a nutshell, viz, lack of press. Imagine if Ang Lee (李安) had directed a remake of The Way We Were about the movement. Taiwanese democracy would be on everyone’s radar worldwide.

In 2001, this reader argued in a letter to the Taipei Times editor for US Navy port-of-call visits which would cost the government nothing and put Taiwan on the radar of the average American sailor and his relatives in the US.

It is good to see the deal for American F-16s being bandied, but the port-of-call visits would be an immediate impact to improve Taiwan’s visibility in the US.

The CCP would not likely launch a 300-missile barrage at Taiwan with US Navy ships in Taiwan’s ports. Needless to mention again, these American sailors would be spending dollars in Taiwan and possibly become future tourists.

W. Weappa

Taichung

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