Wed, Jun 24, 2015 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan warns veterans about ‘united front’ tactic

Staff writer, with CNA

A P-40 fighter plane is on display yesterday at the second pre-show of a national defense expo held by the Ministry of National Defense at the Hukou Miliary Base in Hsinchu County. The fighter was used by the Republic of China military from 1942 to 1945.

Photo: Chien Jung-fong, Taipei Times

The Ministry of National Defense yesterday called on veterans who fought in the Second Sino-Japanese War not to be influenced by Beijing’s “united front” campaign and to avoid attending an event in September to commemorate what China claims is “the victory of the Chinese people” in the eight-year war.

Ministry spokesman Major General David Lo (羅紹和) said that the victory belongs to the Republic of China (ROC) and said that this fact cannot be distorted.

He urged veterans who fought in the War of Resistance Against Japan (1937-1945) to keep the ROC in mind and not to be swayed by Beijing’s unification propaganda, when asked about China’s plan to invite former soldiers to participate in a military parade scheduled for Sept. 3 at Tiananmen Square in Beijing.

Chinese officials earlier yesterday announced that there would be a large-scale event at Tiananmen Square, including a grand military parade, to mark the 70th anniversary of “the Chinese people’s victory” over Japan in the war that ended in 1945. The parade is expected to be attended by some soldiers loyal to the Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT), they said.

Luo called on people on both sides of the Taiwan Strait to look squarely at the historical facts and learn the truth behind the war and the importance of peace.

In 1937, the Chinese Communist Party and the KMT agreed to cooperate to defend China against a Japanese invasion, though that cooperation was often cursory at best, he said.

The ROC government relocated to Taiwan in 1949 after losing to the Chinese communist forces in a civil war, he said.

There will be a military display next month to mark the ROC’s victory over Japan in the war, he added.

The military held a rehearsal yesterday in preparation for the display, scheduled for July 4, at an army base in Hukou, Hsinchu County.

Minister of National Defense Kao Kuang-chi (高廣圻), who presided over the rehearsal, said that the 70th anniversary of the war is a significant moment for the country and for the military, describing the war as the toughest fight in the history of all Chinese people.

Kao added that China has not renounced its attempt to use force against Taiwan and the Taiwanese military must remain on guard, despite warming ties across the Taiwan Strait in recent years.

Rigorous training is key to building combat readiness, he said.

The military display is also a way to test the joint combat capabilities of the army, navy and air force, he said.

He pledged that the military is confident about safeguarding the country no matter what challenges it might encounter.

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