Friday, December 31, 2010

The centennial of the Republic of China

China Times today printed a story written by its DC correspondent Fu Chien Chung(傅建中) featuring an old gentleman C. C. Liu (劉敬九先生) who had been running a Chinese restaurant in the capital city in the 1960s. For the regular patrons then of his restaurant were mostly US military or CIA personnel, the true identity of Liu was covered by a veil of mystery. Fu later found out that Liu was one of the few survivors of the raid of Tung Shan Dao (東山島).


In the summer of 1953, a raid, planned by CIA and executed by the military of the Republic of China, was launched aiming to take Tung Shan Dao, a tiny island off the southern coast of Fujian province. The tactical objective for the raiders was to occupy the island for three days. In fact, the raid was strategically meant to pin down Communist China from sending more troops to reinforce their comrades in the Korean theater.

Though initial landing of the airborne raiders was successful, bad intelligence, poor communication, miscalculation of tides, and rapid and fierce counterattack by the Communist troops led to a hard battle for the commandos. Subsequently, over two hundred elite paratroopers were either killed or captured. Only a handful of the remaining raiders managed to escape and be extracted by the navy, and Liu, a combat photographer attached to the paratroopers was one of the few fortunate. He was later arranged by CIA to immigrate to the US.

Eleven days after the raid, armistice was signed and ended the conflict on the Korean Peninsula. No significant raid on the Chinese mainland was ever drawn and operated.

On the eve of the centennial of the Republic of China, albeit only thirty-eight years, from 1911-1949, of her existence was officially recognized by the People’s Republic of China, a more peaceful and constructive tie is expected by the Chinese people living on both sides of Taiwan Strait. Despite political differences, all Chinese who had fallen to safeguard a way of life which they deemed fit should be remembered and honored.

For the article by Fu Chien Chung(傅建中), please refer to : http://news.chinatimes.com/forum/0,5252,11051401x112010123100384,00.html

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