Taiwanese netizens yesterday responded feverishly to a microblog post by a Chinese subscriber of Time magazine that a page containing a report on the death of Nobel Peace Price winner Liu Xiaobo (劉曉波) had been torn out of the latest issue of the magazine’s Asia edition, saying the incident could be the result of Chinese authorities censoring Time.
“A page in the latest issue of Time was secretly ripped out. I managed to find the missing content and now I know what it is about. It is very old school to censor content by tearing pages out of books in this day and age,” the subscriber said on Sina Weibo.
The page contains a story about Liu’s life and death. It recounts how the academic and activist first rose to prominence in 1989 after helping lead the Tiananmen Square protests, followed by his helping to draft Charter 08 — which called for legislative democracy and a new constitution — which offended Chinese authorities and landed him an 11-year prison term in 2009.
Liu died of cancer on June 13 aged 61 while still in custody.
“His voice was finally silenced on July 13, but his life speaks volumes,” the Time story reads.
The microblog post drew a considerable response after a netizen posted on Professional Technology Temple (PTT), Taiwan’s largest online academic bulletin board system, an article about the incident that attributed the censorship of the magazine to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
The PTT post compared the incident to a front-page story on the Chinese-language China Times yesterday about a claim by the Chinese Nationalist Party’s (KMT) National Policy Foundation that the administration of President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) might have censored content on Facebook considered harmful to her government, apparently to highlight the irony of the importance the China Times gave to an unfounded claim given its stance.
“I feel sorry for those tasked with tearing out the page. It must have been laborious to death,” one netizen said.
Others compared the incident to the CCP destroying publications that it deemed contained sensitive content that could weaken its reign during the Cultural Revolution in the 1960s and 1970s.
Time in the same issue also reported a “cartoon ban” imposed by China.
“Chinese censors temporarily restricted images and mentions of Winnie-the-Pooh on social media platforms WeChat and Weibo after some users compared the honey-loving bear to [Chinese] President Xi Jinping [習近平],” the magazine reported.
A series of discussions on the legacy of martial law and authoritarianism are to be held at the Taipei International Book Exhibition this month, featuring findings and analysis by the Transitional Justice Commission. The commission and publisher Book Republic organized the series, entitled “Escaping the Nation’s Labyrinth of Memory: What Authoritarian Symbols and Records Can Tell Us,” to help people navigate narratives through textual analysis and comparisons with other nations. The four-day series is to begin on Thursday next week with a discussion between commission Chairwoman Yang Tsui (楊翠), Polish-language translator Lin Wei-yun (林蔚昀), and Polish author and artist Pawel Gorecki comparing
‘EFFECTIVE DETERRENCE’: If the Biden administration suspends arms sales to Taiwan, the military could still ready a nimble fighting force for defense, an analyst said The “US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific” last week sparked debate among analysts after US President Donald Trump declassified the document 20 years ahead of schedule. Trump on Tuesday last week released the document that had governed US strategic action in the region since the US leader approved its use in 2018. The document, which outlines US priorities in the region, emphasizes the importance of defending Taiwan against military aggression and facilitating the country’s development of asymmetric strategies and capabilities. The overall directive of the document is for the US to prevent China from establishing sustained air and sea dominance inside the first
MOVING OUT: A former professor said that rent and early education costs in Taipei are the nation’s highest, which makes it difficult for young people to start families The population of Taipei last year fell to the lowest in 23 years due to high rent, more transportation options and the expansion of northern cities into a single metropolis, academics and city officials said on Monday. Data released this month by the Ministry of the Interior showed that the capital was home to 2,602,418 people last year, down 42,623 from 2019. The decline is second only to 1993, when the population fell by 42,828 people, while Taipei’s population was the lowest it has been since 1997. Taipei saw the biggest drop among the six special municipalities, while Taoyuan led the group in
A legislator yesterday called for authorities to investigate the sale of Chinese-made, Internet-connected karaoke machines containing “propaganda songs.” Democratic Progressive Party Legislator Chen Ting-fei (陳亭妃) said she was approached by a person who had discovered Chinese patriotic songs such as My Motherland (我的祖國) — which is commonly referred to as China’s “second national anthem” — in Chinese-made karaoke devices sold in Taiwan. The machines are popular, as they can connect to the Internet, providing access to thousands of songs, she said. One retailer, who asked to remain anonymous, said that the machines first entered the local market about three years ago, starting with