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Formosa Betrayed Paperback – May 24, 2017
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For forty years it bothered me that I had been denied access to this book.
Finally, after I searched the Internet until I learned enough to know the name of its author and its title was I empowered to actually find a copy, buy it, hold it in my hands and peel back the lies I had been told all those years ago.
Finally I understand some of the reasons why the Taiwanese people seemed so fearful of the police. Their silent faces speak to me across the years and I am liberated by the truth I now own. It was an unexplainable horror to live in a country where free access to the written word was withheld by force and by threats of violence.
The massacres following the 28 February 1947 episodes, well told in detail here, should have made it clear to the U.S. administration that the KMT was not up to standard when it came to ruling Taiwan, which it had just recovered to China from 50 years of Japanese occupation.
Instead of promoting democracy and freedom for the people of Taiwan, the Americans were interested first of all in keeping the Communists out (a noble cause no doubt) and, no less importantly, keeping KMT from making trouble against the PRC (also necessary in light of the dictator's unrealistic ambitions). Thus, initially America betrayed Taiwan, even though, in the coming decades, there is no doubt that Taiwan would not have become the success story that we know without the American presence and protection.
Almost fifty years after its publication, this remains a must read for understading Taiwan.
PS: This book has nothing to do with the 2009 film by the same title...
Taiwan, as a former colony of Japan, had every right to be an independent country after the war. Just like Korea. Why the Americans could be so irresponsible as to ask the KMT to accept the Japanese surrender on Taiwan and occupy the Taiwan territory is beyond me. I guess it was political expediency, but the mess that Taiwan's political status is in is squarely the fault of the US. They are the only ones who have the authority and the power to set things right. But now, as in 1947, the US continues to sit on their hands...
Taiwan independence is not about independence from China: It has been independent from China since 1895.
Taiwan independence is about independence from the KMT and the ROC government-in-exile! .
Taiwan will never be a normal country as long as it is shackled with the grotesque ROC government.
KMT has a lot of ways to suppress people's political functions. I remember that I need to submit a Letter of Assurance from the third party prior to get into the university admittance. The letter stated he or she guarantee my loyal to the "Country" and I do not participate the Chinese Communist. Otherwise he or she will be punished the same degree as me. Can you believe it? It was in 1968.
I remember my classmates disappeared before a city mayor election. The anti-KMT candidate was elected. These pro-anti-KMT candidate classmates never come back. Ten years later this anti-KMT candidate joined KMT and be nominated as the mayor of Kaohsiung. At that time KMT change the rule so that they can appointed the mayor without election.
I hope Mr. Kerr's book can be printed again one day.