Archive for the ‘Taiwan’ category

Female Taiwanese Official Stabbed to Death in Dominican Republic

April 20, 2012

Female Taiwanese Official Stabbed to Death in Dominican Republic
United Daily News: 駐多明尼加僑務秘書 遭刺殺身亡
Lei Guang-han reporting from Taipei April 19, 2012

Overseas Compatriot Affairs Commission Dominican Republic Secretary Ou Zhen-mei was found stabbed to death in her home Tuesday. She is the second Taiwanese OCAC Secretary stationed overseas to be murdered. The ROC’s Embassy in the Dominican Republic has requested that the Dominican government use its full power to find the culprit.

The first Taiwanese OCAC Secretary to be murdered was Liao Jun-ming, who was shot while standing at the doorway to his home in Brazil in 1984.

Local media says that there was evidence of beating and gouging on Ou’s body, and the knife wounds were concentrated around her head and neck. There is no sign that her home was brken into. It is suspected that the killer followed her when she returned home late at night, entered her home behind her (she lived alone), and then killed her.

Yesterday, her brother Ou Ming-de, with the help of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, received a new passport and the American visa which is necessary to enter the Dominican Republic. He is expected to set out from Taiwan tonight.

Dominican television and newspapers displayed several bloodstains on the white walls of Ou’s apartment elevator. According to reports, the cleaning staff found these bloodstains when they began work at 9 AM and told their manager. It appears the attack on Ou Mei-zhen began before she arrived in her room.

In addition, another resident of the building reported hearing the loud sound of a door slamming shut that night.

Hou Ping-fu, Taiwanese ambassador to the Dominican Republic, noticed at 10 AM that Ou Mei-zhen had not yet arrived for work. He called her home and cell phone, but no one answered, so he went to her residence himself to check. When he arrived, he found her door shut and there were bloodstains around it. He knew something was wrong and called the police.

Hou Ping-fu said, “The emergency staircase in the back seems to have been used.” It could have been the murderer’s escape route. OCAC Chief Wu Ying-yi said that Ou’s apartment was a mess, but he doesn’t know if anything was stolen. That night, Ou Mei-zhen worked overtime until 10 PM, then told Hou Ping-fu she had to return home.

OCAC has already sent an email reminding overseas officials to look out for the safety of themselves and their homes and recommended that female officials who have to return home late go there accompanied by a coworker.

Ou Mei-zhen graduated from Chinese Culture University’s Philosophy Department. After passing the Overseas Affairs Administration test, she joined OCAC in 1987; she was sent to Guatemala in 2000.

One OCAC member said that the 55-year old Ou Mei-zhen was very experienced; many of her peers had already retired. He also said she was very diligent, responsible, open, cheerful, and polite, and she volunteered for the Buddhist international relief foundation Tzu Chi.

Her tour in the Dominican Republic had already lasted a year and three months. Hou Ping-fu said “she was very diligent and often worked overtime”.


Governor Ishihara: “Tokyo is Going To Protect the Senkaku Islands. Any Complaints?”

April 18, 2012

Ishihara April 17Senkaku Islands
Left: Governor Ishihara at the speech. Photo by Kentarō Nakashima.
Right: The Senkaku Islands, which are north of Ishigaki, Okinawa and northeast of Taiwan.

Governor Ishihara: “Tokyo is Going To Protect the Senkaku Islands. Any Complaints?”
Yomiuri Shimbun: 石原知事「東京が尖閣守る、文句ありますか」
Kentarō Nakashima reporting from Washington, DC April 17, 2012

During a speech on the afternoon of the 16th in Washington, DC (before dawn on the 17th in Tokyo), Tokyo Governor Ishihara expressed his intention to purchase a part of the Senkaku Islands, which are held by Japan (and administered by Ishigaki, Okinawa) despite competing territorial claims by China and Taiwan [who call them the Diaoyu Islands].

He has received the consent of a man in Saitama who already possesses the islands and would like to complete the acquisition this year.

The Tokyo government is looking into purchasing three of the four islands – Uotsuri Jima, Kita Kojima, and Minami Kojima – first, and buying a fourth, Kuba Jima, which belongs to the man’s relatives, in the future.

The Governor pushed back against Chinese territorial claims in his speech, saying “the Senkaku Islands are part of Japan, and they were returned to the country at the same time as Okinawa. Now [China] is saying the islands are theirs. That’s outrageous.”

He added “it would be best if the national government bought the islands, but it’s not because it’s timid,” and “Tokyo will defend the Senkaku Islands. It may upset other countries, but can anyone complain about Japanese people making this acquisition in order to protect Japanese territory?”

After his speech, Governor Ishihara said to the press that he was considering sending a proposal to Ishigaki, Okinawa to jointly administer the islands. Regarding their price tag, he only said “I can’t say. They’re not that expensive.” The Governor is visiting the United States on invitation from the hosts of Washington’s National Cherry Blossom Festival.








(2012年4月17日14時34分 読売新聞)

Taiwanese Representative Unable to Make Floral Tribute at Japanese State Memorial Service…JP Prime Minister Expresses Deep Regret

March 13, 2012

Taiwanese Representative Unable to Make Floral Tribute at Japanese State Memorial Service…JP Prime Minister Expresses Deep Regret
Yomiuri Shimbun: 追悼式で台湾代表が献花できず…首相、深く反省
March 13, 2012

At a Diet budget committee meeting on the 12th, Prime Minister Noda apologized to Taiwan because its representative did not have the opportunity to present a floral bouquet at the state memorial service for Great Tōhoku Earthquake victims the day before. “There is truly no excuse. I wish to deeply reflect on our inconsideration.”

This was his reply to a question by Liberal Democratic Party Representative Hiroshige Sekō. The total amount of Taiwanese public and private donations to disaster relief totalled about 20 billion yen ($242 million), the most of any country in the world.

Representative Sekō also criticized the Prime Minister by saying that when the Emperor and Empress left their seats, “everyone in attendance, regardless of their country, should have stood.” Cabinet Secretary Fujimura said, “(The point of order) was packed in by the secretariat, and I heard about it right before. All I can do is apologize.”

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Taiwan Railway Orgy Included 17 Year Old Girl, Who Confessed to Sex with at least 7-8 Men

February 29, 2012

I’ll be adding Taiwanese news stories to my rotation from here on to practice C-E translation. As you can see, the top story here is sometimes a little different than it would be in Spain and Japan.

Taiwan Railway Living Room Car
The orgy on a Taiwan Railway Car has sparked Taiwanese people’s interest in “living room cars”, which were converted from US Aid-provided passenger cars to executive suites. These “observatory rooms” are equipped with rotating sofas and large viewing windows. The car featured in this picture has the same design as the one used in this case. Photo provided by National Chiao-Tung University Rail Society.

Taiwan Railway Orgy Included 17 Year Old Girl, Who Confessed to Sex with at least 7-8 Men
China Times: 供述列車淫趴過程 17歲小雨:至少和7、8人做過
Chen Hong-wei reporting from Taipei February 29, 2012

Yesterday, Xiao-yu, the 17-year old leading lady in the orgy in a Taiwan Railway car and the key to the Railway Police investigation, appeared in court with her parents and admitted having sexual relations with at least seven or eight people in the car. She said “I remember the faces of the first five, but I’ve forgotten the rest because I was too tired!” Her mother collapsed when she heard that. She couldn’t believe her daughter had done such a thing.

The police have already questioned group leader and part-time tour guide Tsai Yu-lin, leading lady Xiao-yu, female assistant and 25-year old graduate student Xu, 26-year old team steward and odd-job man Liao, and seven people who participated in the scheme.

The Railway Police indicated that the key figures in the railway orgy have already testified, and they already have a clear and complete picture of the case: these 12 people had debauched sex together on a public train. After the investigation, they will be charged with crimes like offending public morality and breaking the Child and Youth Sexual Transaction Prevention Act. The 12, who testified separately, will all be brought to justice.

Xiao-yu will be tried as a minor before the Youth Court.

Tsai Yu-lin admitted organizing the orgy, but he said that except for Xiao-yu, everyone paid $800 NTD ($26 USD) to participate. He said the goal of the activity was to make society understand that there are many forms of sex besides one-on-one relations. He wanted to help people with unconventional views “make new connections”. The female graduate student and assistant said she participated in the orgy because it would help her with her thesis.

Xiao-yu had claimed she was 19 years old, but when she spoke with police yesterday she admitted she was under 18. Because Tsai Yu-lin helped arrange sexual relations for her, he broke Article 23 of the Youth Law: “arranging or assisting in procuring sexual relations for someone who is under 18 merits a penalty of 1-7 years in prison.” The two female assistants and the steward Liao will also be considered offenders of this law.

The other seven who admitted to participating in the orgy are men. Their occupations range from technology company engineer to restaurant worker to unskilled laborer. Five admitted having sex with Xiao-yu while wearing condoms. Another said “I didn’t have time to because there were too many people,” so he put on a condom, stood to the side, and masturbated while watching. The seventh said he couldn’t get an erection because he was “too nervous”, but he did fondle Xiao-yu several times.

The police indicated that the seven “Train Lechers” broke the section of the Youth Law regarding sex, lechery, and obscenity, and even if a person only touched Xiao-yu inappropriately, he would still be considered a violator of Article 22: “having sexual relations with a person under 18 merits a prison sentence no longer than one year or a fine of no more than $100,000 NTD ($3300 USD). After questioning, they were all be sent to the Banqiao Police Department for further investigation.

Last night, three more participants told the police they were willing to come forward and testify. The police have already seized Tsai Yu-lin’s checkbook and issued subpoenas to other people who remitted money to him.

The orgy occurred on February 19. Tsai Yu-lin planned it for four weeks. He posted on the BBS (Internet message board) “First-Rate Flower Art and Color Hotel” (whose name could also mean “First-Rate Prostitute Skilled Sex Hotel”) inviting people to participate in a sex party in a Taiwan Railway Car. After that, he interviewed people to choose the participants, found women who were willing to take part, and collected money. That day, 25 people boarded the Chu Kuang Express in Taipei and had an absurd orgy until they arrived in Zhunan 80 minutes later.

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The Chinese Painter Who Knocked Picasso Off His Pedestal

February 26, 2012

Zhang Daqian

A Zhang Daqian painting signed in 1947 that just sold for $87.43 million at an American auction. Photo by Cordon Press.

Zhang Daqian

The Chinese Painter Who Knocked Picasso Off His Pedestal
This week, Zhang Daqian dethroned the Malagan as the best-selling artist in world auctions. Who was this versatile master?
El País: El pintor chino que noqueó a Picasso
Estrella de Diego reporting from Madrid February 25, 2012

He is sometimes compared to Jackson Pollock for his “dot paintings”, and he was influenced by American Abstract Impressionism and its mysterious colors and ambiguous contours. But just observing one his works attentively is enough to convince you of his greatness. Or seeing one of his most famous portrait photos, which captures him as a handsome old man with a long white beard, absorbed in his work, his arm raised and holding a paintbrush, the essential instrument of painting and calligraphy. This photo shows that Zhang Daqian (Chang Dai-chien) (1899-1983), is more a traditional Chinese painter than an expressionist; he is also one of his country’s most outstanding and admired painters.

This week, his name, little known to the Western public, jumped to the front pages of Western newspapers because his auction sales in 2011 were the best in the world, according to Artprice data. It was the first time in 14 years that Picasso wasn’t in first place. Does this tune sound familiar? Three decades ago, the works of the traditional Chinese painter were available for up to a thousand times less money than they are now, but today the artists of this country are among the most sought-after in auction houses. Not long ago, another Chinese painter, Qi Baishi (1864-1957), earned notice after taking third place on the international art market sales chart after Picasso and Warhol.

It wasn’t the first time the three coincided. In 1956, Zhang Daqian visited Picasso in Niza. He arrived without notice, like a youth, although Zhang was Picasso’s contemporary. The Chinese master, fascinated by Picasso’s brushstrokes, learned to his surprise that Picasso was himself influenced by Qi Baishi, then a nonagenarian. The Spanish artist confessed his admiration for someone he considered “the best painter in the Orient.” In his judgment, nothing could equal Chinese art. He never went to China because he didn’t want to have to compare his work with theirs.

Perhaps Picasso didn’t know that, despite his skill in traditional painting, Zhang Daqian was already immersed in Western art, from which he learned a new way of seeing that broke with the order demanded by his country’s traditional painting, which Shen Tsung-Chien explained at the end of the 18th century like so: “in a good, well set-out painting, all the trees and rocks, all the lines of hills and forests have a very defined place, even though objects like these are actually very variable.” After leaving China at the end of the 40s, Zhang Daqian went halfway around the world – to Argentina, São Paulo, and California – perfecting a style that culminated in his “dot paintings”, which characterized his last work.

Zhang Daqian had always distinguished himself with his malleability. He was born in Sichuan Province to a family that encouraged his dedication to painting and calligraphy. In 1917, he moved to Japan with his older brother to learn coloring techniques, and soon after he traveled to Shanghai, where he had the opportunity to work with two known painting and calligraphy specialists of the era. He got in touch with the great classical masters. The tradition was one of the passions of his life, and soon enough his grand collection of masterpieces spanned the Chinese tradition, including hundreds of works of the Tang and Qing dynasties. His collectionism is essential to understanding his great secret sleights of hand: that is, his forgeries.

Perhaps in his case it would be better to call them false authentic paintings, not copies; according to legend, they were so perfect they still occupy places of privilege in many European and North American museums. One can see he had a rare ability: his first copies of Shitao fooled even the experts. We should clarify, though, that copies – and even forgeries – have a very different meaning in China than they would in the West: Chinese think only great painters can be great masters of imitation.

Perhaps because of this, when he was in his late 50s, he began to develop sight problems and started to work on his “dotted paintings”, it wasn’t difficult for him to start seeing things totally differently. These works are based on the beautiful color spots which he later retouched in his outlines, converting the mysterious blues, greens, and browns into majestic mountains. Many see Pollack in these paintings, although Zhang Daqian insisted on naming the classical painter Wang Mo as his inspiration. Be that as it may, these “dot paintings” are unbeatably healthy on the art market. And they are also influencing new generations, who know that in his work, as Shitao said, “the ink, in filling the brush, fills the soul; the brush, in using the ink, fills the spirit.”

Using ICLP’s Pre-Election Lectures to Analyze the Taiwanese Election Results

February 11, 2012

Using Last Week’s Lectures to Analyze the Taiwanese Election Results
English Translation of Chinese E-Bulletin Article by James Smyth
原文(Original Article)
Featured on Front Page of ICLP Bulletin 061 (Jan. 18, 2012)

Accomplished political scientists gave lunchtime lectures at ICLP on both January 6 and 8 about the Taiwanese Presidential and Legislative Election on the 14th. Now that the election has passed, we can use these professors’ ideas to analyze the results.

Professor Wang Yeh-li, the Chair of the National Taiwan University Department of Political Science, focused on the 2008 electoral reform’s influence on the makeup of the Legislative Yuan. Before the reform took effect, most legislators were elected from multi-seat constituencies with non-transferable votes, but afterward, most were elected from single-member districts. This changed the foundation of the electoral system from proportional representation to majoritarianism. For example, in the 2004 election, the Kuomintang received 34.90% of the votes and 35.1% of the seats in the legislature, while the Democratic People’s Party won 37.98% of the vote and 34.9% of the seats. In the post-reform 2008 election, however, the KMT took 51.2% of the votes and 71.7% of the seats while the DPP won 36.9% of the votes and 23.9% of the seats. This year, however, the gap between votes received and seats won was much smaller: the KMT received 44.55% of the former and 53.5% of the latter while the DPP took 34.6% of votes and 35.3% of seats in the legislature. It seems, then, that the DPP has adapted to Taiwan’s new style of competition.

Dr. Wang also told us that Taiwanese voters often used midterm legislative elections to check the ruling government: for example, the DPP took over 50% of the vote in the March 2004 presidential election, but the opposition Pan-Blue parties won the December 2004 Legislative Yuan election, and in 2006 a KMT candidate almost won the mayoral election in Kaohsiung, a DPP stronghold. Because the presidential and legislative elections are now on the same day, however, Dr. Wang thought it was possible that less voters would split their tickets. The election results indeed bore this out, as the KMT won control of both branches of government.

Dr. Wang also stressed that while politicians without party affiliations play strong roles in local politics, they have much less standing in national politics. This year was no exception: after the ‘01 and ‘04 legislative elections, unaffiliated candidates belonging to neither the Blue nor the Green Alliance held 4.44% of seats in the legislature, after the ‘08 and ‘12 elections, they had just 2.65%.

Dr. Shelley Rigger, Chair of Political Science at Davidson University, said that large corporations unified in support of President Ma Ying-jeou’s re-election campaign because they believed a Tsai Ing-wen victory would be bad for business. They encouraged employees working abroad to fly home and vote for the incumbent president. American media also reported this phenomenon: Foxconn, for instance, gave 5000 employees vacation time and helped them buy plane tickets to Taiwan so they could exercise their right to vote.

Dr. Rigger also explained that the main difference between the two candidates was in their views about the 1992 Consensus with China. President Ma supported this agreement, which contains the statement “There is only one China.” This doesn’t necessarily mean China and Taiwan must unite, and the agreement doesn’t clarify how this unification would come about, but the People’s Republic of China has firmly maintained that the 1992 Consensus is the sine qua non for relations between the two states. Tsai Ing-wen didn’t agree. She criticized the ‘92 Consensus because it was not approved by Taiwanese citizens themselves, who she argued would first have to come to a “Taiwan Consensus” (but she never clearly explained how such a consensus would be created). After the elections on the 14th, many Taiwanese newspapers, like Dr. Rigger, said that the 1992 Consensus was the focal point of the election : for example, the United Daily News’s post-election headline was “’92 Consensus Wins”; the Want China Times wrote that Ma Ying-jeou’s victory was the Consensus’s victory, and the Commercial Times editorialized that the concept of the Taiwan Consensus was empty and meaningless.

Dr. Rigger also said that the Chinese government supported Ma’s reelection, but it tried not to do so too loudly because it was afraid that would backfire and turn the Taiwanese people against Ma. After the election, however, the People’s Daily, the Chinese Communist Party’s official newspaper, editorialized that “this result shows that the pursuit of peace, development, and stability is mainstream on the island of Taiwan and that our Taiwanese brothers wish to further develop the cross-strait relationship and create even more mutually beneficial relationships” and that “naturally, a peaceful and stable cross-strait relationship cannot depart from the ’92 Consensus, the foundation of bilateral negotiations.”

It’s easy to see that these two lectures greatly aided ICLP students’ understanding of the election.

Japan Broadcasting Corporation Karaoke Competition in Taiwan Has 250 Contestants

October 2, 2011

Japan Broadcasting Corporation Karaoke Competition in Taiwan Has 250 Contestants
Yomiuri Shimbun: 台湾でNHKのど自慢、250組ノド競う
Kazuhide Minamoto reporting from Taipei October 1, 2011

Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK)’s “Proud of My Voice” (のど自慢 – Nodo Jiman) karaoke competition began in Taipei’s Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall on the 1st.

This is the 12th time the contest has been held abroad; the last time was in Mexico 6 years ago. According to NHK’s public relations department, there were 1480 applications, the most ever for a competition abroad. The previous record was 674 for the contest in San Paulo, Brazil.

The first round was October 1, and 250 Taiwanese people and Japanese expatriates participated. Songs from a wide range of genres, from enka to pop, were performed. The final round will be tomorrow, on the 2nd. The competition will be presented on NHK’s main station the night of October 29.

Many people in Taiwan are interested in Japanese music, from the elderly who learned Japanese in school to the young Japanese subculture enthusiasts called the “Hari Tribe” (in honor of Taiwanese manga artist and blogger Hari Xingzi/Hanichi Kyōko/哈日杏子).

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