Geography Reference
In-Depth Information
Leaders of the protest were labeled as insurgents and traitors, and for
a while this vilification campaign seems to have worked.
The Kaohsiung Incident (also known as the Formosa Incident)
turned out to be a major watershed event in the democratization of
Taiwan. Several of the imprisoned “Kaohsiung Eight” were to emerge
them were Annette Lu (L¨ Hsiu-lien), who was elected vice president
in 2000 and reelected in 2004, and Chen Chu, a woman who was
elected mayor of Kaohsiung in 2006. Even more importantly, the law-
first century as major political figures in Taiwan, among them Chen
Shui-bian, Su Tseng-chang, and Frank Hsieh (Hsieh Ch'ang-t'ing).
In addition to open state oppression of the island's political and
ideological dissidents, during the last 10 years of martial law there
were also some high-profile extrajudicial murders of political dissi-
dents, murders that remain partially or completely unsolved today.
The dark shadows of these political murders have left scars on Tai-
wan's public political psyche to this very day, and their perpetrators
remain eerily at large.
The first of these were the Lin family murders of 1980. In February
of that year Lin Yi-hsiung, one of the “Kaohsiung Eight” and a vocal
Taiwanese dissident and provincial assemblyman who had been
charged with sedition and imprisoned for his participation in the Kao-
hsiung Incident in December 1979, told his wife during a visit from her
how his Kuomintang captors had tortured him in an attempt to get
him to confess to trumped-up charges. On February 27, 1980, Lin's
mother attempted to contact an Amnesty International office in Japan
about her son's mistreatment. The next day, on the symbolically
important date of February 28, an assassin armed with a knife broke
into Lin Yi-hsiung's home on Hsin-yi Road in Taipei and there slashed
Lin's mother and twin seven-year-old daughters to death. A third
daughter named Huan-ch¨ n, then nine years old, managed to survive
the murders in spite of having received multiple stab wounds. All of
this happened in spite of the Kuomintang's claim to have been watch-
ing over Lin Yi-hsiung's home 24 hours a day. A misinformation cam-
paign concocted by the Kuomintang claimed that a mysterious
bearded foreigner had committed the murder, but today Huan-chun
(now Judy Huan-ch ¨ n Linton), who works in a Christian ministry,
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