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2024/4/13
Remembering the 228 Massacre in a Relentless Pursuit of Truth and Justice

Taiwan Church News

3762 Edition

April 1 ~ 7, 2024

Weekly Topical

Remembering the 228 Massacre in a Relentless Pursuit of Truth and Justice

Reported by Chiu Guo-rong from Taipei

In the afternoon on March 30, the Memorial Foundation of 228 and the Caring 228 Victims Association jointly held the “Memorial Service for the Missing Victims of the 228 Massacre” at the National 228 Memorial Museum.

After the remembrance moment of silence, Professor Hsueh Hua-yuan, chairman of the Memorial Foundation of 228, delivers a speech, stressing that holding the annual commemorative service of 228 massacre symbolizing a relentless pursuit of the truth and justice on the event of 228 Massacre.

Prof Hsueh remarks that the Memorial Foundation of 228 has conducted an in-depth investigation into Chiang Kai-shek and his regime, and the final report was officially approved by the Executive Yuan and published in 1994.

Despite this, he says, today Taiwan society still face the difficult challenges of convicting those still unknown perpetrators, reflecting the absence of social consensus on the historical judgement of 228 massacre. He emphasizes that a regime that does not abide by the law, kills innocent people indiscriminately, and does not act in accordance with legal procedures shall be never allowed to emerge in Taiwan again.

He reminds the audience that 228 commemorative events are not only to remember the lessons of history, but also to remind Taiwanese people that they must show resolute determination and solitary awareness when facing external threats.

Remembering our missing compatriots is not only to learn from historical tragedies, but also to strengthen Taiwan society’s endeavor toward freedom, democracy, and human rights, thereby uniting the people and enriching the future of our homeland and future generations, Prof Hsueh concludes.

(Photo/Chiu Guo-rong)

Mr Yang Chen-long, general secretary of the Caring 228 Victims Association, expresses in the service that his Association has begun to hold commemorative activities for the missing victims since 2018 and hopes that such significant memorial events can continue.

Mr Yang retrieves the heartbreaking pains and grieves, that Taiwanese society has experienced in the past 77 years since the 228 Massacre began, including the heinous cleansing of social elites and the unspeakable agonizing of so many families losing their loved ones. At the end of March, which is reminiscent of sad bereavement amid past KMT atrocities, he encourages the audience still keep faith to find out the historical truth of 228 event, try best to materialize transitional justice, and build up Taiwan as a country full of justice and peace.

Ms Lee Hui-Hsen, a church member of the Chong-Lung Church of Chi-Hsin Presbytery, was the grand-daughter of the 228 victim, Lawyer Lee Ruey-han, and in the service she delivered a speech on behalf of all families of the 228 massacre victims.

To the audience, she shared one of her impressive childhood memory, which became haunted her as a big family trauma when she grew up, that she and her family were unable to locate the cemetery where her grandfather was buried after he was murdered in the event of 228 massacre.

She described the profound impact how the 228 massacre inflicted on her father. She says her father could never forget the scenario when his father, Lawyer Lee Ruey-han, being taken away by KMT troops. As Ms Lee’s father was audaciously chasing the KMT’s military truck, which captured his father, Lawyer Lee Ruey-han in the truck promptly ordered his son to return home quickly in Japanese lest for his safety.

Later, his family was also worried about the safety of Ms Lee’s father and temporarily hid him in Mackay Memorial Hospital until the social milieu was safer. Hence, investigating the truth and responsibility for the very 228 massacre became the top priority in her father’s life, Ms Lee remarks.

(Photo/Chiu Guo-rong)

Ms Lee reiterates the 228 victim families’ persistence to pursue truth and justice, and urges the government to remove of the bronze statue of Chiang Kai-shek in the Chiang Kai-Shek Memorial Hall immediately.

Finally, quoting Isaiah 41:10, “Do not fear, for I am with you / do not be afraid, for I am your God / I will strengthen you, I will help you / I will uphold you with my victorious right hand”, she pledges all victim families’ pious pursuit of justice, calls on Taiwan society to pray for the victim families, and support them to overcome the vicious so that the third generation of the victims families can carry on to let justice roll down like waters!.

Translated by Peter Wolfe


Submitted by:Taiwan Church Press
 
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