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F A P A & H R T

F o r m o s a n A s s o c i a t i o n f o r P u b l i c A f f a i r s & H u m a n R i g h t s f o r Ta i w a n e s e


Sunday, February 28, 2009; 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM

w w w. f a p a . o r g • w w w. h r t s e a t t l e . c o m
Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

Event Summary
On February 28, the Washington Formosan Association for Public Affairs (FAPA) will host a discussion to examine
the importance of the "228 Massacre" to the understanding of present-day Taiwan, the US Government’s relationship
and culpability, as well as what needs to be done today to deliver on the promise made to the Taiwanese during

Participating on the panel is Jonathan Manthorpe, author of Forbidden Nation: A History of Taiwan and International
Affairs columnist for the Vancouver Sun; Dr. Sam Small, Vice-Chairman of the Taiwan Veterans Badge of Honor As-
sociation; and Bryan Chou, second-generation Taiwanese-American, active in the Taiwanese-American community
and in the group, Human Rights for Taiwanese.

About the 228 Massacre

On February 28, 1947, the arrest of a cigarette vendor in Taipei led to large-scale protests by the native Taiwanese
against the corruption and repression of Chiang Kai-shek's Chinese Nationalist government, which had come over
from China with the U.S. Government’s blessing after Japan's defeat by the Allied forces in 1945. Citing the glorious
Revolution of 1776, the Americans promised freedom to the Taiwanese from Japanese rule. However, following the
unarmed protests, troops that Chiang's government secretly sent from China rounded up and executed an entire gen-
eration of leading figures, including students, lawyers, and doctors. Scholars estimate that up to 28,000 people lost
their lives in the turmoil.

Citizen being killed by the Chinese Nationalist
Army in the White Terror after the 228 Incident
Victims of the 228 Massacre 228 Memorial Museum in Taipei

The U.S. Consulate in Taipei reported back about these events, but was told by Washington to do nothing. During the
"White Terror" of the subsequent years, the Nationalists ruled Taiwan under martial law, which ended only when
democratization began during the mid-1980s. The "228 Massacre" remains a defining event in the political divide that
exists in Taiwan today.

To imagine for Americans what this “228 Massacre” meant for Taiwanese, picture the British, after the Boston Tea
Party, then rounding up all of who we now view as the founding fathers and summarily executing them. The ramifi-
cations of this on democracy and human rights in America would have been profound, perhaps to the point of Amer-
ica still being under British rule.

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Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

Jonathan Manthorpe

Jonathan Manthorpe has been The Sun's International Affairs columnist and a foreign correspondent for nearly 25
years. He came to Vancouver in 1998 after five years as the Southam News Asia correspondent based in Hong Kong
from where he travelled and wrote on events throughout the Far East, Southeast Asia and South Asia. Manthorpe
and his family were posted to Asia direct from Africa where he spent nearly five years as the regional correspondent
for Southam News based in Harare, Zimbabwe. During this time Manthorpe reported on the transition from apart-
heid to majority rule in South Africa and covered major wars, famines and social upheavals across the continent. This
posting followed nearly a decade in Europe where Manthorpe was sent in 1979 as the Toronto Star's European Bu-
reau chief. In the early 1980s Manthorpe spent two years as a special adviser in London to then prime minister Pierre
Trudeau during the campaign to patriate Canada's constitution. After the completion of that project Manthorpe be-
came the European Correspondent for Southam News. For most of the 1970s Manthorpe was a political correspon-
dent for the Globe and Mail and then a daily columnist for the Toronto Star. 

He grew up in Toronto, but trained as a journalist in Britain where he won the national prize for the top graduate of
the year in 1969. Manthorpe has won the Mitchener Award for journalism and several international prizes for his

Dr. Sam Small

Dr. Sam Small is currently the Vice Chairman of the Taiwan Badge of Honor Association (BOHAUSA) and is cur-
rently working on a book about the Taiwan China unification question. He is a Vietnam veteran decorated with a
Purple Heart and the Gallantry Cross Campaign Medal; after his tour, he was assigned to the Shu Lin-Kou air station
outside of Taipei in 1971, he served two years in Taiwan. Returning to the United States, Dr. Small entered the Uni-
versity of Washington, earning a Bachelors of Science degree in International studies focusing on the China region; he
went on to earn an MBA in in global business sustainability, then obtained his Ph.D. in International Business Sus-
tainability in 2005.

Dr. Small has spent a total of twelve years working in Taiwan and another four in China, including visits to both the
Tibet and the Uighur regions currently controlled by the Beijing government. As a front-line witness to the 1989 Ti-
enanmen massacre in Beijing, he met and talked with many of the student leaders of the China democracy move-
ment. As Vice Chairman of BOHAUSA, he has met and talked with President Ma concerning Taiwanese issues, in
addition he has worked to promote Taiwanese concerns with members of the United States Congress. 

Bryan Chou

Bryan Chou was born in Seattle, Washington to Taiwanese parents who immigrated to the United States. Bryan is
active in the Taiwanese-American community; he has served as President of the Taiwanese American Student Asso-
ciation (TSA) at the University of Washington, was a member of the National Board for the Intercollegiate Taiwanese
American Student Association (ITASA), and member of Human Rights for Taiwanese in Seattle. 

Chou holds a Bachelors degree in Community and Environmental Planning from the University of Washington and a
Masters degree in Landscape Architecture from Rhode Island School of Design.

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Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

Lawrence Lin: FAPA and Human Rights for Taiwan Seattle would like to welcome you to the 63rd anniversary of the
228 Incident and to begin today with the president of FAPA Washington George Yeh with a few remarks

George Yea: My name is George Yea I'm the FAPA president of the Washington chapter. Today is the 63rd anniversary
of Taiwan's February 28th of 1947, also known as the 228 Incident. The 228 Incident was the most tragic incident in
Taiwan's history. 228 will never be forgotten. We should remember the 228 incident and prevent a repeat of the 228
incident, that's why we are here today, to memorialize the victims. I'd like to welcome you to today's service, thank

Lawrence Lin: Thank you George. Now to give a brief background on 228 we will play a short 15-minute film enti-
tled "Introduction to the 228 Massacre: Martial Law and the White Terror in Taiwan"

<film plays: The History of Taiwan: Postwar Era and The 228 Incident>

Lawrence Lin: Before we invite Mr. Ryu Keibun to give a first-hand account of the 228 Massacre please silence or turn
off you cell phones. Now I invite down Mr. Keibun along with his English translator Chung-I Lin.

Ryu Keibun (English Translation by Chung-I Lin): My name is Ryu Keibun. The organizing committee invite me
because I am also family of a victim of the 228 incident. He was my uncle, my mom's brother. He was a student at
National Taiwan University and only 21 years old. He came home for the Lunar New Year celebration with a friend,
after he returned to the university he went missing. After two months we received a notice for the family to go and
claim his body, to see if it was him. He died at the shores of the Danshui River in Taipei. My father went to recognize
and claim the body but before you could do that you had to pay money to the government. The money was to pay
for the bullets the soldiers used to kill the students. My father went to claim the body and the folks who lived near
the site came and told him what happened. It was five in the morning and before then KMT soldiers had prepped
and hidden machine guns. There were about 30 to 40 students who were trucked in around six in the morning. After
the students were unloaded from the trucks they were lined up and fired at and were killed. None of the students
survived that incident that day. At that time the KMT were like a killing machine. The people the KMT government
targeted were people they felt threatened by, people who had knowledge,intellectuals, and the educated. It didn't
really make a different as to the reason, as long as they felt threatened by the person's existence that person would
most likely go missing. The KMT of then and the Chinese government of now is very similar.They may have a differ-
ent color, one's red and the other is blue but underneath they're all the same. Similar to the KMT of then the Chinese
government of now oppressed and subdue the people of Tibet as well as people of the Sichuan Provence. It would be
quite unfortunate if the Taiwanese people were to one day be under the grasp of the Chinese government. Hopefully
nothing like that will ever happen, a repeat of the 228 incident. So my hope is that the people of Taiwan will wake up
and realize the dire situation, that's it.

Lawrence Lin: And now we move into the main portion of our program today, the panel discussion. I'd like to invite
our panel participants to come up to the stage, please hold your applause till the end they won't do it like the "Price is
Right" one-at-a-time. As they make their way forward I'll make introductions. We have, joining us from Vancouver
Canada, Jonathan Manthorpe, he is the Vancouver Sun's international affairs columnist and making a great sacrifice
for us today missing part of the USA/Canadian gold medal hockey game. Next up we have Dr. Sam Small who is
currently the vice chairman of the Taiwan BOH association and working on a book about the China/Taiwan unifica-
tion issue. And finally Bryan Chou is a 2nd-generation Taiwanese-American and served as president of the Taiwanese

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Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

Student Association here at the University of Washington. Let's all give our panelists a round of applause. We've
heard much about the history of 228 so far today we'll hear just a little bit more in the first half of our discussion
panel titled "A Historical Perspective of 228". Each one of our panelist will give a briefing of that followed by a Q&A
and then part 2 which is really the meat of our discussion today, the current situation and the US response to it. So
let's begin part 1 with Mr. Manthorpe.

Jonathan Manthorpe: Since the United States stepped on to the world stage as a major force and influence at the ne-
gotiations for the Treaty of Versailles in Paris in the winter of 1918, 1919, the right of self-determination of peoples has
been a central theme of American foreign policy. That is not at all surprising. The foundation of the United States was
itself an act of self-determination by a people who defined themselves and their values as different from the place
from which most of their families had come. At Versailles Woodrow Wilson made the right to self-determination by
peoples in the wreckage of the Austro-Hungarian and German empires a central drive of his orchestration of the ne-
gotiations. Indeed, some argue he went overboard and his commitment to this principle created problems which sur-
faced later.

The right to self-determination remained an American ideal after the Second World War as Washington exerted pres-
sure on Britain and the other remaining imperial powers to dismantle their empires. This right is still high on the list
of American principles. In the last few years, for example, we have seen Washington administrations support with
seemingly little consideration of the implications independence for East Timor and Kosovo. In both those cases there
are good arguments to be made that these new countries make very little sense ethnically, geographically or eco-
nomically as independent states. But that has not deterred American administrations.  

This makes it all the more remarkable that successive administrations in Washington of all political stripes have not
and do not support self-determination or independence for the 23 million people of Taiwan. This denial is particu-
larly raw because Taiwan has all the requirements for statehood that it is possible to imagine. It is a distinct society in
a defined territory that governs itself by the regular exercise of democracy. It is not only economically viable, but
highly successful and maintains trade and diplomatic relations with much of the world. And Taiwan has been in real-
ity an independent nation for nearly 60 years.

Well, we all know the reason for Washington’s hypocrisy on this question and that is the judgement, again by succes-
sive and diverse administrations, that functioning relations with China are a prime American national interest in
Asia. Officially, of course, Washington only “acknowledges” China’s claim to own Taiwan. But as the years have gone
by one gets more and more of a sense that Washington would do very little to resist and might even welcome Tai-
wan’s absorption by China. The Taiwan Relations Act, which requires American administrations to aid the defense of
Taiwan, can be interpreted as broadly or narrowly as an administration wishes. President Bill Clinton sent two air-
craft carrier battle groups to waters near Taiwan when Beijing fired unarmed missiles into the island’s shipping lanes
prior to the 1996 election. But it is hard to visualize an American administration repeating that demonstration, not
least because China has invested heavily and with apparent success in being able to deter U.S. carrier groups and
potentially defeat them. And, as we have seen with the latest arms sale, there is increasing reluctance in Washington
to supply Taiwan with any arms that are not unequivocally single-purpose defensive weapons.  

It was not always so. From the end of the Second World War in 1945 until the mid-1970s Washington’s official posi-
tion was that the status of Taiwan was unresolved and that the people of the island should determine their own fu-
ture. How truly committed American administrations were to this policy I find hard to judge. In the Cairo Declara-
tion – in reality a press release of no legal status – America, Britain and China vowed that Chinese territory acquired
by Japan will be returned. But when Taiwan’s governor General Chen Yi asserted the supposed resumption of Chi-

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Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

nese sovereignty in public speeches, he was rebuked by American officers and told that was not the case. And the
1952 Treaty of San Francisco in which Japan gave up ownership of all the territories seized by the empire does not say
to whom sovereignty is passed. In such documents as president Harry Truman’s memoirs we are told that Washing-
ton aimed to determine the future of Taiwan by a referendum. But the U.S. postponed this course because of lack of
security in the region first with the Communist take-over of China in 1949 and then the Korean war starting in 1950.
That flowed into instability and war in Southeast Asia in the 1960s and early 1970s when Taiwan was an essential
U.S. base. And pretty quickly we arrive at July 1971 and Richard Nixon’s national security adviser, Henry Kissinger,
is in Beijing making the deal that betrayed Taiwan.

The Kissinger-Nixon view was that it was in America’s national interest in the Cold War to drive a wedge between
Beijing and Moscow, and if that meant abandoning Taiwan, so be it. But it is worth remembering that Taiwan then
was a very different place from what it has become in the last 20 years or so. I first went to Taiwan in the mid-1970s
when it was still a one-party state under martial law. Quite honestly, there was very little difference in the oppressive
and hostile atmosphere one met in Taipei than in the southern Chinese city Guangzhou which I visited a few weeks
later. There was little respect in Washington for Chiang Kai-shek or Chiang Ching-kuo, and quite rightly so. This was
a thuggish, corrupt and brutal regime that not only oppressed and killed Taiwanese, but which also mounted a mas-
sive espionage operation in the country of its bets friend and supporter, the United States. President Jimmy Carter in
particular had huge disdain for the Chiangs and the Kuomintang as a result of what he had witnessed in China as a
submarine officer at the end of the Second World War. He had no qualms about shifting diplomatic recognition from
Taipei to Beijing and one can understand why. With hindsight, though, that was a moment when Washington should
have looked to the future, dug in its toes and insisted on maintaining full diplomatic relations with Taipei as well as
Beijing. But, of course, Chiang Ching-kuo and the KMT Republic of China establishment might well have refused

Since then American presidents have all given the impression that they regard Taiwan as a nuisance and an unwel-
come intrusion in the far more important issues of Sino-U.S. relations. We know with certainty that it does not matter
what a would-be American president says during a campaign. Both Bill Clinton and George W. Bush vowed to “ do
whatever it takes” to defend Taiwan and its interests while campaigning, but pursued pro-Beijing policies when in
office. Bush went so far as doing what he could to undermine the presidency of Chen Shui-bian.

Now, with the Chinese nationalist Ma Ying-jeou in power in Taipei and the Sino-US relationship a central factor in
American economic life, Washington seems to have stuck its Taiwan folder in the filing cabinet and locked it away
with some relief. My view is that this is very short sighted and that Washington may come to regret its lack of atten-
tion. The Ma administration is in deep trouble, as we know from public opinion polls and recent by-elections. And as
China approaches the transition to the fifth generation in the Mao Zedong Dynasty, there is declining political legiti-
macy among the leaders in Beijing. This is an unpredictable and potentially unstable combination.

The declining interest in Taiwan not only among American political leaders, but western leaders in general is, as al-
ways, matched by a lack of attention among the media. Part of this is because few western media outlets apart from
the wire services such as AP, Reuters and Agence France Presse keep bureaus in Taiwan. The island is not generally
seen as providing a steady enough diet of good stories to justify establishing an office there. And neither is it seen as a
good base or listening post from which to report on the Far East as, for example, Hong Kong was before 1997. In-
creasingly western media with limited budgets are basing their Asian reporters in Beijing. That’s understandable and
is what I’d do if it was my responsibility. But it does mean that the Far East tends to get reported on through the
prism of China’s view of the world. When western reporters go to Taiwan it tends to be for set piece events such as
elections. In those circumstances the reporting often does not reflect an understanding of the nuances of Taiwanese
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life, culture,  and politics. That said, there is not universal ignorance about Taiwan. I have several friends reporting
for western media who have profound knowledge and experience of Taiwan.

During the last presidential election campaign in Taiwan I spent quite a bit of time talking to young people among
the one-million first-time voters in that election, all of whom had been born after the end of martial law and the one
party state. Their prime concern was the economy and their career prospects. Ma's promises of economic revival ap-
pealed to many of them, even though his campaign’s portrayal of the Taiwanese economy as being in trouble at that
time was a gross misrepresentation of the truth. But what also came out from my interviews was the strong sense of
Taiwanese identity among these young people. They had great certainty about whom and what they are as a people
and a nation. I drew many things from these conversations. One was that it was not enough for the Democratic Pro-
gressive Party to play the national identity card during campaigns. It has to have more to offer an increasingly so-
phisticated electorate. Another point, I think, is that the Chinese nationalists still at the helm of the KMT need to be
very careful. As we know, all but a tiny minority of the island’s people – mostly the remnants of the Chinese KMT –
consider themselves either exclusively Taiwanese or Taiwanese first and ethnic Chinese second. Indeed, the propor-
tion of the population identifying itself as Taiwanese has gone up significantly since Ma became president. And as we
also know a similar proportion of the population wants either to maintain Taiwan’s current independence or to seek
international recognition of their independent status.

Lawrence Lin: Thank you Jonathan and next to speak will be Dr. Small.

Sam Small: As Jonathan reiterated earlier in his talk it's an honor to be here and to see so many wonderful Taiwanese
people again. I miss living in Taipei, I lived in Taipei for about 12 years on and off and to see so many Taiwanese to-
gether again is really a unique opportunity. I'm a little bit nervous, bear with me as I go. I was asked to originally to
talk about my experience in China. 

In 1989, you'll have to excuse me as it was an emotional time in my life, I was working in Beijing and I was present as
the Tiananmen Square massacre. So I'm very emotional because I saw a lot of things that I saw when I was in Vietnam
and the slaughter was unimaginable that I witnessed there. What occurred with the crowd and young students in
Tiananmen Square was almost euphoric when it began. The students at the time that I had witnessed this I had spo-
ken to them repeatedly out on the square and I became increasingly concerned as the days wore on and the weeks
wore on as the Communist government were debating about how to handle the situation with the students. The stu-
dents at the time only wanted democratic reform, they weren't trying to overthrow the government they didn't want
to see any kind of this thing happen, but the leaders in Beijing, predominately led by Li Peng and a few others de-
cided that the students had to be stepped on. 

And of course they ordered the tanks in and the night that occurred I was in the Beijing hotel on the roof with other
journalists and if you know anything about Tiananmen Square the Beijing Hotel was built by the Russians earlier in
the 50's and it sat on the corner overlooking the TS area. The students had moved this big statue, originally it wasn't
intended for what it was, they called it the Goddess of Democracy. And this statue had a vague resemblance to the
Statue of Liberty. And this was the straw that broke the camel's back so to speak with the Communist government. 

That night and through the next day we stayed up on that roof guarded by a barrier as the incident occurred and
early that morning about 4:00, it was still dark, I went back up onto the roof and I saw huge fires out on TS. I tried to
see what it was, I had a camera with a zoom lens but it was so dark all you could see was shadows around these fires.
When I served in Vietnam as a paramedic I saw a lot of death and burned, charred bodies. It provides a kind of
stench and I smelled that and I know right away they were burning the bodies on TS. To cover the number of bodies

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Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

that were actually killed. So when the Chinese government tells you that 300 people died don't believe it. It was more
in the neighborhood of 6,000. 

The next morning I decided it was time for me to leave and of course at that time getting out of Beijing was almost
impossible because the governments had closed all of the airports trying to trap the students, the leaders of the de-
mocracy movement. So I borrowed a bicycle and with my passport in one hand I peddled all the way from Beijing to
capital airport, anyone who's been there knows that's a long ride. Back in those day they didn't have freeways it was
a two lane road all the way out to the airport. About every mile I was stopped by soldiers with AK-47s pointed at me
and they would look at my passport and they would look at the papers and they'd eventually pass me on. It took me
six and a half hours to make it to the airport. When I got to the airport there were literally tens of thousands of for-
eigners panicked, trying to get out of China. Because I worked for a very large aerospace company in Seattle and I
was working with CAAC, the Chinese Aviation Authority of China, at the time they put me on a 737 and flew me to
Chengdu and from Chengdu you couldn't get out of the airport so I was able to get on a train packed with people
and I took it to Kunming. And if you know anything about Kunming the altitude is very, very high there and it took a
long time for that train to get up that mountain but it finally got up there and three days later I was able to get out to
Hong Kong and then back to Taiwan again. And what a relief that was. 

I've been back to China many, many time since in a capacity with my company. I harbor no grudge against the Chi-
nese people but I always think to myself, "what would it be like if the Chinese government asserted control over the
Taiwanese people?" Would it be like that? I don't know. I certainly hope that the Taiwanese people take enough pride
in themselves and their country to prevent that. We have a saying in the West, "All that it takes for evil to succeed, is
for good men to do nothing." And that was my experience there. 

I've been back to Taiwan many times since and I had the privilege of teaching at National Taiwan University then at
Taipei City University where I met General Keeting and others. It has been my privilege to be the vice-president of a
national veteran's organization called the Badge of Honor Association. It's a group of veterans who have sacrificed
their time, and their lives for many of them, who have served in southeast Asia protecting the rights and democracy
of people including those in Taiwan. As a part of that group it's been my pleasure to work with the Congress of the
United States, Senators, and government people in Taiwan. I was privileged to have lunch with President Chen Shui-
Bian to discuss these affairs, I also had the opportunity to meet and have lunch with President Ma Ying-jeou. 

The primary concern I have as an American in my capacity is that the people of Taiwan absolutely have the right to
self-determination and to choose what kind of life and what kind of country they need to have and to be governed
accordingly. As the gentleman had mentioned earlier some things had occurred earlier that unfortunately could have
been prevented and it started prior to 1947 and had the government of the United States under Truman stood up
rather then to have containment as a policy Taiwan would be different today, much different. The Taiwanese actually
had the opportunity to establish Independence at this time and unfortunately a lot of thing happened within the gov-
ernment at the time, the Korean War was going on, other places were flaring up, American was discharging hundreds
of thousands of troops, there was not enough people to recover what had happened all over the world and it was
expedient for the government to allow Chiang Kai-shek and the KMT to have custodial control of Taiwan. Please
understand that, the KMT was never given political control of the island until later. Custodial control of Taiwan was
under the jurisdiction of the conquering country of the Empire of Japan and that was the United States. And had the
United States exercised its lawful rights then Taiwan would be a different place today. It would be a free, independent
society. Thanks.

Lawrence Lin: Thank you Dr. Small. We'll conclude the first half of the panel with Bryan Chou.

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Reexamining Taiwan’s 228 Massacre: A discussion on the U.S. role in Taiwan then and now

Bryan Chou: Thank you again for having me. I can't say that I'm an expert at Taiwan history, I think the distin-
guished members of this panel might be a little more educated in terms of Taiwan and Asian history then I am but
what I can offer is a more personal view of Taiwan history, modern Taiwan history and politics. 

I'm a 2nd generation Taiwanese-American, both my parents were born in Taiwan and they came over in the late 70s
and my dad went to grad school here at the University of Washington. My parents came over during the time of
White Terror and martial law in Taiwan and when I was growing up they would always explain to me how impor-
tant it was to them to discover news of Taiwan through the foreign media because at the time the KMT controlled the
media and they didn't allow people to speak out about 228 and so a lot of what they know was learned through the
foreign media in the US. My parents weren't the exception, many students at that time were traveling away from
Taiwan to study abroad and I think 288 is remembered in the US differently than it is in Taiwan. 

Living in the US and having Taiwanese-American parents, Taiwanese people would always stay at my house and I
think this happened across the US. These people would stay at your house and you wouldn't necessarily know them
but you'd always call them "uncle" and it always turned out to be maybe some important person who was blacklisted
and wasn't able to return to Taiwan. It was an interesting experience growing up knowing that there were these peo-
ple and for me it was a norm and to learn as a kid that there were people blacklisted from returning to Taiwan was an
eye-opening experience. When my parents would explain how the KMT government would have spies in the US
spying on Taiwanese-American and US citizens that kind of blew my mind as a kid just to think that a foreign gov-
ernment could have spies here in the US. As a kid you feel very safe growing up in the US and to have those kinds of
things it's eye-opening in a way. 

I remember my parents would get these VHS tapes of raw footage from Taiwan and they would gather their friends
and they would watch it in the basement and sometimes I'd watch a little bit of the raw footage from protests in Tai-
wan of students getting beaten and sprayed down with fire hoses, pretty disturbing images but this was a fact of life
that we had to experience what was happening in Taiwan through these VHS tapes. I think in a way it's reminiscent
of the African-American civil rights struggle in the US. This was happening in Taiwan and for my generation grow-
ing up in the US we didn't have to battle for civil rights in the US, most of the civil rights we have now we grew up
with and it was already the norm. I think the images I saw when I was a kid of these riots that were happening in
Taiwan they were a wake-up call for me, it made me understand that the world is still changing and there's still
things to fight for and to really stand up for. 

Of course my parents as good Taiwanese parents do teach you that if someone asks if you're Chinese or what ethnic-
ity you are you always say, "oh, I'm Taiwanese-American. I'm Taiwanese not Chinese." when my friend's parent
would ask what ethnicity I was I think they were shocked in having this little kid come up and say "I'm Taiwanese
not Chinese" but I think there was a lot of education that had to come along with saying that statement so I spend a
lot of time explaining to my friend's parents politically what was happening in Taiwan and why I was Taiwanese and
why I'm not from Thailand. That's just the kind of childhood I grew up with and I think it was complex for a kid to
really understand those kind of complex issues that were happening in the world but it was definitely a good primer. 

I think I was asked to speak a little bit about what kind of education Americans get about 228 or what's happening in
Taiwan, honestly, really little. In school Taiwan was never in the history books or taught in social studies I think there
was maybe one class in high school that alternated about different world topics and Taiwan was one of those topics
and I was really hoping to get that class because I knew I could ace it but I ended up getting Israel and Palestine. This
goes to show you that Americans can only hold so many issues in their heads at one time and Taiwan isn't one of
them. It's Israel/Palestine, it's Tibet. 

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But thinking about Tibet potentially Taiwan could become a Tibet if China invades Taiwan and the thing about Tibet
being in the national consciousness it hasn't helped their situation at all and part of that is because everyone came on
board after Tibet was invaded and for us to educate Americans it's important for us to get out there before things
really start happening in terms of major conflicts. Maybe this kind of information isn't new to you guys, I know a lot
of you are Taiwanese-American and grew up with this lifestyle but today is a day of remembrance and it's important
to remember where we came from and how we struggled. Thanks.

Lawrence Lin: Thank you to our three panelists and now we will have a brief Q&A session, there's a roaming micro-
phone that will be passed around to those who'd like to ask questions to the panel. If you'd like to ask a question
please raise your hand and we'll bring the microphone up to you.

Question: Is the Taiwan [Relations] Act sufficient alone to protect Taiwan?

Sam Small: Having worked with the Congress of the United States for quite sometime and part of my work was of
course with the TRA, the Taiwan Relations Act. You have to remember that the Taiwan Relations Act was enacted
right at the start of the Jimmy Carter era when Henry Kissinger went over and did what they did with China and
established relations. It was several congressmen a year later who actually decided that "we just can't leave Taiwan
afloat out here, this is a democracy." At least a fledgling democracy at that time in growth. So the TRA was estab-
lished as a means to provide Taiwan with the defensive weapons they need to protect themselves from a potential
invasion from China. 

The Shanghai Communique and all these other agreements between the United States and China, the key premise the
United States always held was whatever would occur between Taiwan and China had to be peaceful. And the only
way you can negotiate and get a peaceful settlement is through strength. You can not negotiate from a point of weak-
ness and win the argument, you will always lose. So the TRA was established with this in mind. Each successive ad-
ministration can play with the TRA the way they want, they can use it as a way to hedge against China. Like what
happened a couple of weeks ago, the Obama administration decided they wanted to send a signal to the government
in Beijing and they passed a basic defensive act and sent the missiles and things to Taiwan. 

You have to understand that the TRA is designed to give Taiwan five days. In other words what's happening is that
the defensive weapons Taiwan has been sold by the US - the F-16s earlier and what you have now - is what we call a
standoff assortment. It's not designed to win a war, it's designed to give Taiwan enough time so the United States can
respond. If the government in mainland China decides to attack Taiwan tomorrow the United States cannot respond
overnight. So the TRA was setup so that Taiwan would have enough defensive weapons in their arsenal so they can
prevent invasion until the Americans would have enough time to respond in kind. That's what that was designed for
and it was purposely setup that way. 

However governments themselves have somehow defeated the initial purpose of the TRA and part of it is the re-
sponsibly of the Taiwan government. The KMT under Chen Shui-Bian, when the Bush administration tried to sell the
initial package to include submarines and additional F-16s, it was the KMT that absolutely prevented this from hap-
pening. It could have been a done deal. But the KMT kept stonewalling for one reason, they didn't want to give Chen
Shui-Bian credit. They hated him so bad that the legislature controlled by the KMT prevented it. And now that the
KMT is in power, "give us everything." And the Obama administration is too passive, I doubt seriously whether the
Obama administration will react if anything does happen. So it's up to the Taiwanese people and the government
embattled there to stand up and take charge of their own destiny. The TRA is a stop gap, five days, that's what it's
designed for. Five days.

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Jonathan Manthorpe: I'd just add to that, that no; the TRA is not enough and one of the reasons is that five days no
longer exists. The Chinese have since 1996, since Bill Clinton sent the two battle groups to the waters off Taiwan, the
Chinese have concentrated on being able to develop military hardware that would allow them to defeat American
battle groups. They started off with cruise missiles, but in the last few weeks we have heard they have developed
ballistic missiles that are accurate enough to hit American aircraft carriers. Cruise missiles fly at a fairly low altitude
and are susceptible to defenses from the battle group of all sorts. A ballistic missile comes up and goes straight down
and there is really no defense against that at the moment. The Chinese have been very, very effective and have
worked very hard and spent a huge amount of money in making that five days non-viable. I think Taiwan has to look
to its defense and look to its future on a number of fronts. 

I've always considered that one of its greatest defenses in terms of the support it gets from the outside world and not
just the United States but countries like Canada and Europe, is continued and vigorous political reform and demo-
cratic development. I think that's very important not just for the society itself but for the way it's regarded by the rest
of the world. And of course you know there is one fundamental thing that is going to help and perhaps save Taiwan
and that's political reform in China. I'm afraid I get a little more pessimistic about that as time goes by, we now seem
to be in a period where the Mao Zedong dynasty is bent on a return to Confucianism. Whether they can manage this
or not I don't know but I think one of the great dangers for Taiwan is political instability in China, this will lead to
politicians calling on nationalism, nationalism against Taiwan, nationalism against Japan, in order to try and save
their own skins. I wish it was an easy question, I wish there were easy answers but there's not and I wish I could be
more encouraging.

Lawrence Lin: Part two of the panel is titled "The Current Situation and What the United States Could Do". The dis-
cussion will focus on the current situation in Taiwan and hopefully answer the question "why should Americans care
about what's going on in Taiwan? How is it relevant to our interests?" We'll go in reverse order from the first half so
we begin with Bryan Chou.

Bryan Chou: I can really only speak about the Taiwanese-American community here and not necessarily about
changing politics in Taiwan. I think you have to start with understanding how Asian-Americans are viewed in poli-
tics. Asian-Americans don't have a voting block in politics, politicians don't care about Asian-Americans. Part of the
reason is that Asian-Americans are such a wide group of people. People from every economic and social class; Asians
in the inner-cities, Asians in the suburbs, and they all vote similar to their neighbors. Basically Asians vote like white
people, that's what politicians have concluded, in a way they don't have to cater to Asians. You have to start looking
at not Asian-American voting but smaller communities like a Taiwanese-American voting block. In a way this is hard
to do because a lot of politicians don't see Taiwanese-Americans as a large enough community to cater to. We haven't
been very influential in terms of getting our voice out there and changing policy as a community that votes together. 

A lot of new politicians are coming in that don't have any of the legacy from the older era of China and Taiwan poli-
tics, they don't necessarily know what's going on with Taiwan. I think it's important to create a stronger voice for the
Taiwanese community so politicians can point to one voice that is coming out of the Taiwanese-American community
and educate the American people that way. It's our responsibility also to educate as many Americans on the back-
ground of Taiwan and how we view Taiwan. The American public doesn't know how involved US politics is with
Taiwan politics. Decisions about Taiwan are made in the US in some sense. 

Recently it's been harder to know who the enemy is, before we could say "oh, the government in Taiwan is oppress-
ing the Taiwanese people." Now that there's more democracy in Taiwan is the KMT still the main issue, or is it China,
or is it international recognition in the UN, or is it US involvement in Taiwan politics; I think it's becoming a lot

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harder to explain. I think we still need to give the basis for the American people to understand how decisions in the
US affect Taiwan. We need to keep passing on this passion for Taiwan and for Taiwanese-American activism that his-
torically been a force to deal with. As my parent's generation, the first generation of Taiwanese-Americans, moves on,
some of the passion dies generation after generation until we have no one speaking for the Taiwanese people. I think
there is some urgency to pass on this passion on to the next generations and still have this voice within the US about
Taiwan politics. We still need to be vigilant.

Lawrence Lin: On to Dr. Small.

Sam Small: I'd like to build what Bryan was talking about. The thing that most amazed me when I was in Taiwan, I
was talking with a young lady here just a few minutes ago down here, in some of the classes when I was teaching in
Taiwan, and not just working as an engineer,I'd ask my students a basic question, "Are you Taiwanese or are you
Chinese?" And a lot of times I'd get this deer-in-the-headlights look and they'd think about it, then look at each other,
"are you going to tell on me?" I'd go, "this is a free democracy today here. You can express yourself." And slowly but
surely a few would say "I'm Taiwanese" or "I'm Chinese" but the majority would say "I'm both." How's that for neu-

It's very, very, important that you understand your history. As a Taiwanese-American, if you have an American
friend, have they ever asked you about Taiwan? What do you know about Taiwan yourself? Have you ever read a
magazine article or newspaper article? Doesn't it make you mad sometimes? You see an article about Taiwan and
what's the first thing they say? "Taiwan split from China in 1949 in a bloody civil war." What? That's not true but
that's what you read. Taiwan was never involved in the civil war in China. And what's the next thing you hear?
"China wants to reunify with Taiwan." What? Reunify? Reunify means you used to belong to them. What would you
say, as a Taiwanese-American what would you say to your friends? We not going to reunify, if anything we might
unify, right? Unify means, "hey, let's talk equally. I'm on this side and you're on that side, maybe we could come to an
agreement and unify." Know you history. 

There are three basic things about Taiwanese history that are very important and that you should know. In 1895 at the
end of the Sino-Japanese War, a very important thing occurred that changed Taiwan history, to this very day it has
ramifications. Do you know what that is? It is the Treaty of Shimonoseki. And the Taiwan Republic which lasted for a
few months before it was crushed by the Japanese. There was a history of independence in Taiwan. Taiwan actually
had the very first democracy in all of Asia. Very first one. Didn't last very long but the Taiwanese of that era stood up.
Know your history. It's important that when your friends ask you about Taiwan you can tell them some real things
about Taiwan not some thing you read in the KMT history book. Because it's not going to be what really occurred in

My answer to the students was, to this young lady asking "how do we get the word out?", you guys are the precur-
sors of your own destiny. As an American I cannot do that because I don't have the credibility say that this gentleman
would have, Bryan. If he's talking to his friends they're going to believe him, more then they would a person like my-
self. So the idea is that you have to get the word out, talk to your friends. Be proud of your ancestry and your heri-
tage. I love the Taiwanese people, I can't tell you how many times I've been in Taiwan and walked down the street at
midnight and people have talked to me, I've never had a bad incident with Taiwanese people. I've had a few Chinese
that I've had bad incidents with, but not Taiwanese. I've been all over China, I've been all over Taiwan.  I cannot tell
you how many people have asked, "do you like China better or Taiwan better?" To me that's not even a question. Be-
cause there is no doubt in my mind that the Taiwanese people by themselves, as a group, as a society, are simply a
wonderful people. Much better and well educated then the Chinese. I'm not saying Chinese people are bad or any-

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thing like that, there's some wonderful people in China. I'm just saying to be proud of yourself and your heritage,
know who you are and get the word out. 

About Bryan's questions about American politics in Taiwan. Americans are basically, and I want to be honest with
you, I'm American and I love my country, and I fought and bled for my country, but sometimes American's can be a
little ignorant. At work, talking to other engineers who have masters degrees in history and engineering, if I ask them
"where's Taiwan?" they have to look at a map. "Isn't it part of China?" But nobody who works in my group today,
nobody, doesn't know about Taiwan. If you ask them today them could tell you, and that's how you get the word out
and that's how you spread it. And you got to get this thing out of the brains of the American people that Taiwan is
part of China. My mother, bless her soul she passed away a few years ago, when I first came back from Taiwan in
1970, when CSK was still the reigning dictator in Taiwan, she asked me, "what is it like over there? Does Mao Zedong
still control Taiwan?" 

It took me awhile for me to get my neighbors to understand Taiwan, but you know Bryan and this other young lady,
this is the future right here. People like Bryan need to run for political office. Taiwan needs to have a voice. I don't
care if it's a "D" voice or an "R" voice, you understand I'm talking about "D" Democrats and "R" Republicans, the point
is Taiwan needs a strong voice and that they can convey that message. You people out here all have the right, most of
you I'm sure are American citizens or in the process, how many American citizens are out here? OK, you can call or
write your congressman/senator anytime you want. How many have called their congressmen/senators about Tai-
wan issues? A few of you, good for you. Because that's how you get the word out. You don't get the word out by just
sitting there, remember, the only thing it takes for evil to succeed is for good people to do absolutely nothing. If you
want to see Taiwan grow, become strong, remain a democracy, and retain that freedom, it's guys like Bryan, the fu-
ture, to take care of that. So stand up and be proud of yourselves and know your heritage, know your history.

I can recite every bit of history from Taiwan from 1600 forward, how many can do that? OK, you need to know your
history so you can explain it to your friends. I'm going to move this along and allow my colleague right here to talk.

Jonathan Manthorpe: I would only say "here, here" to all of that. I've written a history of Taiwan and it was a huge,
huge problem because there was very little recorded history. To know your history you need to record your history. I
hope all of the testimonies we've heard today are being recorded and becoming part of an archive, becoming part of a
national consciousness. 

I would also say 228 was the beginning of a process that led up to 1979 Kaohsiung Incident then finally to the col-
lapse of the one-party state and martial law. There's a whole story in those years from 1947 to the end of the 1980s, the
whole of that 40 year experience that is told somewhat, but is not told thoroughly. I'm sure there are plenty of people
in this room who have experiences, maybe not all of 228 but all of those years afterwards and what happened and the
progress that was made, the stubborn resistance to the KMT, but also some of the victories within that. The huge eco-
nomic development of Taiwan which was part of the reason why it's transition has been a success. There'a lot more in
this story that needs to be told, needs to be out there and that you and your relatives in Taiwan need to account, need
to record, need to make part of your heritage because your heritage does have some huge blanks in it that people
who attempt to write a history of Taiwan keep on falling into big holes where nothing is known. It should be known,
should be recorded. I would urge all of you to record your own histories and histories of your relatives and make it
part of the archive of your people and your country.

Lawrence Lin: Another opportunity for questions and answers to the panel. Again we'll be running a mic around for
those who'd like to ask the panel a question.

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Question: Earlier Mr. Manthorpe talked about reforming the Taiwanese government as a means of solidifying the
status and recognition on an international level. What means of change can the young people of Taiwan place their
effort into if they wish to progress democracy and independence further along? Most of the Taiwanese people I talk
to when I go back to Taiwan seem to be overwhelmed by the Chinese economic powerhouse and it's felt that the Chi-
nese have such a strong grip with so many Taiwanese businessmen in China that if Taiwan does anything China
could freeze Taiwan's markets and it feels like a great fear.

Jonathan Manthorpe: That's a huge problem and I guess it's the one that Ma and his administration are trying to ad-
dress in the economic sphere of coming to some sort of free trade agreement with China which will also allow Taiwan
to develop free trade or eased trade relations with other countries, in particular other countries in Asia. At the mo-
ment Taiwan is getting squeezed, there the ASEAN [Association of Southeast Asian Nations] free-trade agreement
which is now linked to China and South Korea and Japan, and that of course leaves Taiwan as the only country in the
region that is not within that trading block. This is a huge problem for Taiwan and one needs to watch very closely
what the Ma government is up to on this because there is a very delicate line between achieving economic advan-
tages and economic agreements with your neighbors and giving up sovereignty to China. 

One of the concerns I and a lot of other people who keep an eye on Taiwan have is that the administration in Taipei
has not been very forthcoming about the status of these negotiations or what's involved with them. I think it would
be nice to see stronger voices from the Taiwan public demanding more information about these negotiations. This is
such a crucial thing for a place like Taiwan, demanding a referendum on approval or rejection of any agreement that
is written or reached. I think this is far too important a matter for the continued independence of Taiwan to be left to
secret negotiations behind closed doors. 

A degree of activism in a number of areas, we just talked about the economy but there are a number of areas, there's
problems with the justice system being eroded in the last couple of years, there are problems with the constitution-
it's nonsense having a constitution written in 1941 for the whole of China which is the constitution, with some
amendments, the constitution for this island of 23 million people. It's just total nonsense, there needs to be constitu-
tional reform from the ground up and a total rewriting. So there are all sorts of areas where thoughtful political activ-
ism is important to advance and progress Taiwan's democratic reforms.

Sam Small: Can I add something real quick to the constitutional reform in Taiwan? When I had lunch with President
Ma and his staff last August we questioned him on this issue with ECFA [Economic Cooperation Framework Agree-
ment], the constitution, transparency and the government. When I say transparency I mean being open with the Tai-
wanese people. The referendum issue he mentioned, the current administration right now in Taiwan under the KMT
government will never allow a referendum on EFCA. They understand that if that referendum were allowed it would
defeat the ECFA propositions they're negotiating with China right now. So your question as Taiwanese should be
"what are we giving away to get this agreement signed?" I can guarantee you're going to be giving up way more then
you're going to get back. And that's the reason they'll never allow a referendum on this issue.

Jonathan Manthorpe: The KMT in particular doesn't like the precedent of referendums anyway as we know from the
experience of the last eight/ten years. 

Question: A question about organic law also called rewriting the constitution. Could you elaborate in the Canadian
experience, the experience as a crown colony becoming a British dominion from the British/North American Act 1967
to the 1931 statue of Westminster and if you see any parallels or similarities with the Taiwan Relations Act to the San
Francisco Treaty.

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Jonathan Manthorpe: Not really. The other thing you have to remember about Canada is that we actually ignored the
statues of Westminster of 1935 until 1982. I actually had a hand in that, I was special advisor to Pierre Trudeau on
patriation of our constitution from Britain in 1981/82 so I was kind of on the front lines with that one. We in Canada
actually manage quite well without an effective constitution. We have no means of amending it at the moment so we
bungle along quite happily, but we're in a very different position from a place like Taiwan. 

Taiwan is burdened with five pillars of administration when they only need three, they've got these leftovers from the
Qing dynasty that really are totally pointless. The constitution itself is made up of the worst aspects of the French and
American constitution with a sort-of German police force put on top. It's quite a nonsensical thing that has no appli-
cation to Taiwan today at all. I can't see quite honestly the KMT really wanting to fundamentally restructure the con-
stitution because that will anger China inevitably, as all the fiddling with the constitution have done so far, I don't
think the KMT is prepared to do that. I would love to be wrong but I don't think I am.

Lawrence Lin: For Taiwanese-Americans speaking with Americans one thing that might come up is why should the
average American care about what's going on in Taiwan? They might come back and say "it's not effecting me in my
day-to-day life so why should I care about an island nation half-way around the world?"

Sam Small: I've had experience with questions just like this and to be honest with you the average American that
understands the basics of world history, and not every American is ignorant now when I say Americans are generally
ignorant. A lot of my friends understand the issues in Taiwan and they know what's going on, and I'll be honest with
you the basic American does care. Because the basic principle of American democracy had always been that we sup-
port democracies throughout the world. Taiwan should be absolutely no different. Unfortunately today there is one
issue that clogs this, and that's US debt. Currently China owns somewhere in the neighborhood of 36 billion dollars
[ed: ~$900 billion] of American Treasuries and they can use this as a hedge against American decisions and policies
concerning Taiwan so it becomes very muddled and cloudy about how these decisions work. But the average Ameri-
can out in the trenches does care. 

If it came down to defending Taiwan the average American would. A lot of young American men and women are
dying in Afghanistan and Iraq today and I don't think that would be any different in Taiwan if it came down to that
issue. But I'm talking at the grass-roots level now, not governmental levels.

Question: My question is directed towards Dr. Small. In your experiences working with Congress would it be safe to
say the Republican party is currently more favorable towards Taiwan's situation?

Sam Small: There's not a lot of Americans in here so I can probably say this without too many ramifications. It has
been my experience in dealing with several administrations in veterans negotiations concerning this issues, predomi-
nately the Republican administrations have been more friendly towards Taiwan. If you go back to the Eisenhower
administration, remember Eisenhower actually visited Taiwan. If you go forward from the Eisenhower administra-
tion the Kennedy administration was a Democratic administration of course and his administration was very friendly
towards Taiwan. But beyond that for some reason the liberal side of the political spectrum in American has leaned
towards China. Of course it has a lot to do with the economy and the money and expenses going back and forth but
our experience is that when we deal with Republican politicians in Congress and in the Senate they have a tendency
to support the ideals of freedom and democracy in Taiwan a little bit more strongly then most of my liberal friends
do. Now when I say liberal congressmen I talk to a lot of them and they also support Taiwan, don't get me wrong. I
don't want to take sides on "D"'s and "R"'s here. But it has generally been our experience that the Republican side
have always supported Taiwan a little stronger. Remember it was a Republican administration that signed the initial
defense packages under George Bush which allowed Taiwan to get the initial package of F-16s. And it was the Eisen-
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hower administration, going back that far, was actually the administration that set the policy for Taiwan as a con-
tainment area. So just my experience, other people might have a different experience then I've had but that's basically
what I've felt.

Jonathan Manthorpe: I would add as an outsider it was of course a Republican administration that started the shift
of diplomatic relations from Taipei to Beijing. It was Ronald Reagan who in the Chinese view at least, began drawing
a line under arms sales to Taipei. I think he got hoodwinked into that myself and subsequent administrations have
tried to back track from it. In my observation as a non-American is that whatever, and I said this earlier, but whatever
American politicians, would-be president, say on the campaign trail, when they get into the Oval Office there's seems
to be some kind of cultural lobotomy that happens to them and there is an institutional view in Washington of what
the balance ought to be in China and Taiwan. They get jabbed with some kind of inoculation that makes them fall in
with the Washington culture on this question. That may be an unfair observation, but there we are.

Question: Dr. Small it seems that you understand the history on both sides of the straits. From an American point of
view how can China justify a claim on Taiwan? 

Sam Small: From my point of view it cannot be justified. You're preaching to the choir here when it comes to Taiwan-
ese democracy and freedom. It's like I said earlier, nothing irks me more then when my friends come to me and say
"Taiwan is a part of China." Or "Is Taiwan part of China?" Or reading an article in a magazine that says "Taiwan split
from China in 1949 in a civil war." Politically speaking from my own point of view you have to understand the his-
tory, what's really happened, to understand why I could not ever justify that Taiwan is a part of China. I've studied it
very carefully and I've written papers on it and my dissertation was a part of that in my studies. Personally, it can not
be justified in any way, shape, or form. I hope someday that can be reconciled between the Chinese people and Tai-
wanese people, but it's going to be very, very difficult.

Question: Do you think the Communist government will still exist 30 to 40 years from now?

Jonathan Manthorpe: I don't think Communism really exists in China anymore and hasn't for some time. What
we've got is a sort of authoritarian-capitalism with Marxist tendencies. State kleptocracy. Highly organized corrup-
tion. And a very strange sort of monarchical system whereby the children and relatives of the senior members of the
communist party are able to get rich quick while the rest of the population works as coolies. It's an extraordinary sys-
tem and how long it can go on for I don't know. Whether it can be reformed or transformed, I too old, sick, tired, and
stupid to make too many predictions China anymore. I gave that up some years ago. But it doesn't look to be a ten-
able system. And if it breaks down then the most likely thing to happen won't be a carbon copy of what happened in
Russia but some form of warlordism is the most likely outcome as we saw in the 1920s and 30s. If and when it will
happen I really don't know, it's almost impossible to make reasonable predictions about China I think anymore.

Sam Small: I'll add a little bit to that. I was in Beijing on my way out to the airport one day with a driver, we had a
car assigned to us. We had an English translator, a young gentleman who spoke English very well, and a driver. The
driver we knew was a member of the communist party, I mean an actual member of the CCP. Only three or four per-
cent of all of China are actually communist party members. This guy of course was supposed to assigned to watch
me and report on any activities I did that might not be kosher. We were riding out to the airport and I was humming
a little tune and this young translator we got to talking about different things like how he wanted to travel he wanted
to go to America and Canada and he wanted to go to Europe. Then he turned to me and said, "Mr.Small, I want to tell
you something. The only thing red in China today is the flag." This was remarkable coming from this young man. It
didn't hit me until I got to the airport and sat in my office, what this young man had said to me. Two weeks later I
never saw him again, he was reassigned. I know what happened, the driver reported him and he was reassigned.
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After the Tiananmen incident this kid disappeared, I don't know what happened to him. Ran away, whether he was
taken in, I have no idea what happened. What he said to me shocked me that day and it stunned me because this
coming from a Chinese citizen was remarkable. 

Will communism be around in China 50 years from now? The Chinese government politicians now in power are still
those who were in power basically under Maoism. You have people like Le Ping, Dung Xiaoping is gone, once this
older generation of politicians are gone you got guys like Hu Jintao in power, they're getting a little bit younger they
weren't part of that old guard. Once these influential politicians have passed from the scene perhaps there's a chance
China will change, hopefully. For the betterment of the world I hope that is so. But there's a danger in that the Chi-
nese people are very nationalistic, it takes very little to set them off. Whenever the government wants to take people's
minds away from what's going on they'll start bad-mouthing the Japanese government for something and pretty
soon the Chinese are rioting. They're a nationalist people and they have a tendency to think that because of what
happened over the past couple of hundred years that the West owes them something. That the West has taken from
them and it's their turn to get that back in a sense. I've talked to a lot of different people in China about these different
types of issues, basically it's true. 

I was with a Taiwanese friend of mine in Beijing, a very nice lady who was a work associate. We went to a basketball
game one day and the basketball game, you know how the NBA has these retired players who travel all over the
world as ambassadors for basketball? They were playing the Chinese National Team and this young Taiwanese lady
was like most of you, an American-Taiwanese. We were sitting there watching the game and once in a while an
American guy would make a basket and she'd cheer and finally this Chinese guy turns around looked at her and
said, "You're Chinese, you are always going to be Chinese, and you will always be part of the mainland so please shut
up." There's two sides of the spectrum in China, they're very nationalistic, very proud of themselves as well. Will
China change in the next 50 years? I wouldn't bet my money on it, don't take it to the bank.

<Trailer for "Formosa Betrayed">

Lawrence Lin: On behalf of FAPA and HRT Seattle thank you for coming to today's 228 event. Audio, video, and
transcripts will be available on in the coming weeks. Thank you and good night.

FA PA & H R T! Tr a n s c r i p t : R e e x a m i n i n g Ta i w a n ’ s 2 2 8 M a s s a c r e