Reported in Newsweek
Formosa: the bloody hand
Police on trucks roamed Taipei shooting into unarmed crowds. Troops
knocked on doors of houses and shot the first person who appeared.
They looted left and right. Thousands of Formosans were arrested and
jailed. It was evidently a common practice to bind prisoners with thin
wire. The dead bodies of bound men were found every morning on the
streets, some beheaded or castrated.
An eyewitness of the bloody Formosan rebellion which started February
28 gave Newsweek's Shanghai correspondent this shocking description of
how Nationalist troops succeeded last week, by terroristic tactics, in
restoring order throughout most of the island. The Chinese mainland
troops, under the command of the Japanese-educated Formosan Governor,
General Chen Yi, killed an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 of the natives who
revolted against the political corruption and economic oppression of
Chen's postwar regime (Newsweek, March 17).
Even top Nationalist leaders, in effect condoned this revolt in their
own territory. The Chinese Defense Minister, general Pai Chung-hsi,
recommended various administrative reforms demanded by the rebels. The
Central Executive Committee of the Kuomintang (government party) voted
in favor of Governor Chen's dismissal. Chen responded on March 24 by
executing another 70 Formosans who reportedly established a "people's
government" in the southwestern town of Chiayi.
Formosans in Shanghai protested bitterly: "The government keeps Chen
so it won't lose face by admitting its own maladministration. But every
day it saves face hundreds of Formosans die", they said.
Newsweek, 7 April 1947
Taiwan, Ilha Formosa