Up to 5,041 informers were active on more than 80 university campuses in 1983, when the then-Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) authoritarian regime monitored students through its Chunfeng Project (春風計畫), Investigation Bureau archives have showed.
Asked by the Transitional Justice Commission to study the about 3,000 files the bureau transferred to the National Archives Administration, former Taiwan Bar Association chairman Lin Kuo-ming (林國明) said that some incumbent lawmakers, including Democratic Progressive Party legislators Chang Liao Wan-chien (張廖萬堅) and Chung Chia-pin (鍾佳濱), had been targets of the KMT’s surveillance efforts.
The two lawmakers took part in the 1990 Wild Lily Student Movement, a pivotal moment in the nation’s democratization that resulted in the dismissal of the National Assembly and the abolition of the Temporary Provisions Effective During the Period of Communist Rebellion (動員戡亂時期臨時條款).
Once Lin’s research is completed, the commission would provide an account of the surveillance to the public, commission spokeswoman Yeh Hung-ling (葉虹靈) said.
Further investigation is needed to establish how many people the Chungfeng Project had placed under surveillance, Yeh added.
In a bid to curtail student movements, the KMT in the early 1970s integrated its educational, administrative and intelligence resources to create the project, the commission said.
In 1975, it is estimated that at least 3,900 people worked for the project on university campuses nationwide, it said.
Project personnel would meet every year on average until the KMT in 1983 instructed the Ministry of Education to convene campus stabilization meetings to strengthen surveillance on university campuses, it added.
Chang Liao said that the commission had informed the two legislators about the declassified archives, adding that he had been aware of KMT informers at university, but had not known who they were.
After browsing through the files, he had gathered some clues about one informer, who had assumed the name Chang Chien (張健) and served as an executive in the student sports club, he said.
Chang Chien had been a perpetrator and victim of the KMT’s propaganda promoting loyalty to the party and the nation, Chang Liao said, adding that it is not necessary to reveal the identity of Chang Chien, who might have reflected on his past wrongdoing.
If he was to meet Chang Chien again, he would laugh it off and give him a hug, Chang Liao said.
THE CHINA CONNECTION: As Beijing’s aggression increases, so does Taiwanese consciousness, making a new constitution imperative, Hsu Wei-chun said If the nation is to ratify a new constitution, it must first end any illusions about the current document’s relevance to Taiwan, an academic told a forum in Taipei yesterday. For the constitutional revisionist movement to succeed, it needs public enthusiasm, the right timing and a clear plan of action, Chung Yuan Christian University associate professor Hsu Wei-chun (徐偉群) told attendees at the event titled “Imagining a New Constitution for a New Era,” which was organized by the National Taiwan University Graduate Student Association. The Constitution exists under the “one China” framework and has little relevance to Taiwan, Hsu said, adding that
Former president Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) yesterday urged Beijing to respect the median line of the Taiwan Strait by immediately stopping its military intimidation of Taiwan, as such actions would only hurt the feelings of Taiwanese. Beijing should immediately stop making military provocations against Taiwan, Ma wrote on Facebook after Chinese warplanes in the past week have made numerous forays across the median line that divides the Taiwan Strait. Although it has never officially acknowledged the median line, Beijing used to respect it, Ma said in response to comments on Monday by Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Wang Wenbin (汪文斌), who said
IDENTITY: The time is right to press on with a referendum, as the nation has heightened visibility and support in the global community, the Taiwan United Nations Alliance said The Taiwan United Nations Alliance yesterday said that it is considering launching a petition for a referendum proposal to have the nation join the UN under the name “Taiwan.” Alliance chairman Twu Shiing-jer (涂醒哲) was joined at a news conference in Taipei by Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Legislator Huang Hsiu-fang (黃秀芳) and leaders of the Presbyterian Church in Taiwan and civic organizations. They said that it is the right time for a petition because Taiwan’s visibility on the world stage has increased, as it has been praised for its success in containing its COVID-19 outbreak and for helping other countries by sharing
An advertisement displayed in the corridor of the underground Taipei City Mall has caused contention online with social media users saying that it depicts Taiwanese bears as servants of Chinese pandas. The advertisement — which imitates the style of an ancient Chinese painting, but replaces people with bears — shows a scene in imperial China, with Formosan black bears laboring, while pandas relax and enjoy beverages. “The development of the tourism industry is important, but this type of targeted advertising is extremely disrespectful — and it makes people uncomfortable,” Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Taipei City Councilor Chen E-jun (陳怡君) said. The advertisement, under