Result of CCP and KMT Propaganda

A lot of interesting happens recently.  But the following is just a random thought that has nothing to do with the recent events.

The more I think about it, the more I realize ever since WW2 information and ideas could be used as weapons, sometimes achieving destruction even greater than nuclear bombs.  The obvious examples are Nazi’s propaganda against Jews and political oppositions, communists’ propaganda and of course China’s “Great Leap Forward” and “Culture Revolution.”  However, a lot of times people don’t seem to realize what a lasting effect CCP and KMT propaganda has on the current delima faced by Taiwan.

Take, for example, CCP and KMT’s continuous claim that Taiwan is part of China.  If we ignore all the propaganda spread by them, we will realize that ROC(KMT)’s claim on Taiwan is really problematic, and PRC(CCP)’s claim on Taiwan is complete BShit.  However, because both parties have been claiming on it for so long, people actually take it “for granted.”  I don’t think people believe the propaganda fully, and take the statement with a grain of salt.  However, even this partial belief proves deadly to Taiwan.  Let me try to explain it below (I think it is kind of complicated so I don’t know if I can show it clearly, but anyway…)

To a Foreigner Who Has No In Depth Understanding of Taiwan:  When a foreigner who have no understanding of Taiwan heard this propaganda, he/she might not believe it fully in that he/she knows that right now Taiwan is not part of China.  However, he/she is unable to deny such claim in any way, therefore, he/she will likely choose to believe that there is some truth behind this claim.  The usual conclusion they reach would be similar to the following “Taiwan is currently independent, but it is supposed to be part of China (legally).  Therefore, although I might sympathize with Taiwan’s situation, there is nothing wrong for China to “unify” Taiwan…”  They might even go so far as to feel sorry for China because it is still struggling to “unify lost territories.”  They will also be totally confused by all the names such as ROC, PRC, Chinese Taipei, Taiwan Province of China etc etc.  In this case, propaganda leads to confusion, which leads to less support for Taiwan.  (The situation is really like a tug of war, China will say one thing, and pan-green Taiwanese supporters will say another.  A foreigner who has no idea would think that the truth probably lies somewhere “in the middle.”  But by going “in the middle” they are actually falling into Chinese trap, because what China says is complete BS…but because China says it the loudest, it is able to pull some in its way.)

To Taiwanese Themselves:  This propaganda creates a lot of problems even among Taiwanese themselves.  The best way to described it is a psychological problem called “identity crisis.”  That is indeed the best way to describe it.  The propaganda often confuse the issues of culture, language and nationhood.  Taiwanese feel they are different from Chinese, but at the same time they use the same language.  Taiwanese also has a culture different from China’s, but at the same time, Chinese culture is indeed part of Taiwanese culture.  All these are actually not a big deal, but the problem arise when the propaganda linked and equate Chinese culture with Chinese claim of Taiwan.  Anyone with a clear head will note the falsehood immediately (ex. Canada, US and Australia not part of UK.  And Singapore not part of China)  However, because this propaganda has be driven deep into the mind of Taiwanese, there are still a lot of Taiwanese who can only think “inside the box.”  However, recently, there are more and more Taiwanese who is able to see through the box, but I do not know how many.

To Governmental Officials: The confusion doesn’t just go on in the public, but even governments of different countries are mostly confused.  This is quite evident in the US.  The US has vast interested in Asia Pacific, therefore, their officials often have to say something about China and Taiwan etc.  However, it is very clear that a lot of them have absolutely no clue to what the TRA says etc.  Some of them are even totally confused as to what their own US policy toward China and Taiwan is.  Some of them, I would even say, are influenced heavily by Chinese propaganda.

Taiwanese officials are not much better.  Especially the older KMT elite member, including Ma himself, are totally pro-China and seem to have this “big China dream” of some sort.  The recent misconduct of the retired generals are very good examples and evidences.  Interestingly, although their actions are filled with pro-China evidence, they try very hard to hide it when they speak, especially during the election.  They might even “get angry or nervous” when people point it out.  They, IMO, are a lost bunch…they will never be able to go outside of their current frame of mindset.

Ignorance brings tragedies, and Pen is indeed mightier than the Sword.  But, to be optimistic, I am pretty sure there are ways to peel away this layers of propaganda piled on by the CCP and KMT for the past…6 decades…but it is going to take time and effort.

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