It was August 6th, 1945, the US drop of the atomic bombs in Hiroshima and Nagasaki was the beginning of the end of the Japanese empire.
Soon after the Japanese surrender and withdraw from the occupied China. Chiang Kai-Shek, the chairman of the Nationalists (KMT) send troops from China to Taiwan, to liberate the island from 50 years of Japanese occupation and rule.
This liberation turned out to be a new occupation and Taiwan became ruled by the Nationalists.
The liberators were initially welcome as they got rid of the Japanese, however they soon took over all the political and social power, leaving the Taiwanese in the same situation as when the Japanese were ruling.
The situation deteriorated even more and the Taiwanese people were starting to feel revolt.
On February 28, 1947 the people of Taiwan came out to the streets and took justice on their hands.
As a result additional troops were sent from China, to re-establish order. Things did calm down a lot but just because an enormous amount of people (10 to 20000) were arrested, beaten and shot. Among those people were the elite and educated class.
That day was just a confirmation that the only thing changed from the Japanese occupation of the occupier. The Taiwanese developed servant, obedient and compliant attitude in facing the new rulers
“They took a slavish character in order to ensure their personal safety, never daring to resist their rulers. On the other hand, the people both feared and were disillusioned by politics. Such paranoia and indifference towards politics suited the one-party totalitarism of the new occupiers. Taipei Times 28.02.04”
Two years after this incident, in the Main Land China, the Nationalists (KMT) were defeated by the Communists and seek refuge in Taiwan, conveniently ruled by the KMT.
This refuge was suppose to be temporary as the KMT, claimed to represent China and would eventually go back to take over the Main Land from the Communist.
Taiwan was designated by the Republic of China, while the main land China was designated by Mao Tze Tsung, The People’s Republic of China.
Taiwan was officially recognized by UN to represent the whole China until early 1970’s.
The KMT never got re-organized nor had the international support to go back to china and take over the country, from the communist.
The communist always claimed that Taiwan was another province of china to were the defeated army ran away to.
The politicians of both sides, pretty much seek the same: to rule both sides as one country.
Today, the situation remains unsolved, the lack of communication and diplomatic talks are contributing for a raise in the cross straight tensions.
Today, 28 February 2004, the Taiwanese are holding hands, in about one hour they will make history again. At 2:28 pm, local time, more than 1 million people are expected to hold hands in a nearly 600 km chain from the north to south.
Today they are holding hands to protest against the 446 missiles that China has pointed at the island.
Today the Taiwanese, are protesting against the enemy of their enemy back in 28.02.47…
One may say, "the enemy of the enemy!...it does not make much sense" and it is arguable... but whatever one's opinion and side, at least they are free to express their thoughts again!