Chinese Nationalism, Difficult for Outsiders to UnderstandPosted: August 26, 2016
We have a very interesting essay on Foreign Policy on August 25 titled “The New Face of Chinese Nationalism”, giving description of Chinese people’s nationalism. The writer believes that the Chinese government plays a significant role in that, which precisely shows his ignorance.
When Japan invaded China, Chinese government did not want to fight for fear of defeat as it knew well Chinese troops were far inferior to Japanese ones, but college students lied on railway tracks in order to force the government to fight.
Patriotism lies in Chinese culture. It has not been the result of Communist propaganda. During World War II, Chinese people fought a bitter war for 8 years to resist Japanese invasion. At that time, the communists did not control the means of propaganda.
The understanding is very important for those who want to invade China. Japanese people will continue to have nightmare about China’s retaliation for decades to come.
Another issue I have to make clear is that the Taiwanese beauty Zhou Tzuyu was wrongly attacked for advocating Taiwan independence due to her appearance on TV screen holding a flag of the Republic of China.
The Chinese Communist Party in power on Chinese mainland and KMT previously in power on Taiwan Island have reached “1992 consensus” that there is only one China but each side can have its own interpretation of the one China, i.e. mainland China can regard the People’s Republic of China as the one China while Taiwan can regard the Republic of China as the one China.
Note: Taiwan’s official name is the Republic of China not the Republic of Taiwan that pro-independence Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen wants but dare not change Taiwan’s official name for fear of military attack by mainland troops. Now, China has been pressuring Tsai to accept the 1992 consensus to make clear that she does not advocate Taiwan independence but Tsai refuses to accept as she still cherishes her dream of Taiwan independence.
The Chinese government supports Chinese netizens’ attack at Tsai’s website but does not support their attack at Zhou as Zhou as a Taiwanese has the right to hold the flag of the Republic of China according to 1992 consensus. She did not advocate Taiwan independence in holding the flag on TV screen. As a result, Chinese netizens stopped their attack at Zhou but attacked the Taiwan singer who framed up Zhou.
However, it was too late as the damage has already been done. Zhou, the poor Taiwanese beauty only 15 years old, had left Taiwan to receive hard training in South Korea for more than 3 years to pursue her dream to become an idol singer. As a naïve young girl, she knows nothing about the politics concerning Taiwan independence. However, she had already been seen on TV screen miserably reading her apology.
Some people believe that tears are girls’ best weapons, especially perhaps when the girl is exceptionally beautiful. At that time, Zhou has already been chosen as ranking the 13th in beautiful face in the world by an American company well-known for its choice every year of 100 beauties in the world. It has been the first time ever a Taiwanese girl has been chosen by the company. She, therefore, had lots of fans in Taiwan and was regarded as a symbol of Taiwan’s national pride.
As a result, the tears she shed on TV screen became Tsai’s best weapon in defeating pro-Beijing KMT, its rival, in Taiwan’s recent presidential and parliamentary elections. Indignant at Chinese netizens’ attack and enthusiastic to defend their identity, lots of Taiwanese people vied with one another to vote for Tsai’s pro-independence party, giving her a landslide victory. Taiwanese media believe that Zhou brought at least one million votes to Tsai.
It may be true that beauty has its irresistible charm.
Comment by Chan Kai Yee on Foreign Policy’s essay, full text of which can be viewed at http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/08/25/the-new-face-of-chinese-nationalism/?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=New%20Campaign&utm_term=%2AEditors%20Picks.