Ma expresses much gratitude for WW2 allied forces, descendents
President Ma Ying- jeou expressed gratitude to the descendents of allied forces who assisted in the nation’s air force during the Second Sino-Japanese War, yesterday, following the screening of a documentary film that he attended.
After the premiere of “The Rocking Sky” ( ), several veterans of the war or their descendants were invited on stage to receive a standing ovation from Ma and the audience. Ma stated that during the eight years of war, many foreigners helped the R.O.C. pull through the difficult period, so the government decided to invite allied forces to Taiwan, including descendants of the Soviet Volunteer Group, a volunteer part of the Soviet Air Forces, and the American Volunteer Group, also known as the Flying Tigers.
“Not only soldiers, but also many foreign businessmen, preachers and doctors provided help — they are all benefactors of the R.O.C. and we should express our upmost gratitude,” Ma said, stating that by expressing their gratitude, “we can let them feel that we are a nation that values history and relations.”
Before the premiere, Ma said that according to statistics from the Academia Historica ( ), China endured 13,000 air raids by the Japanese, and over 250,000 bombs killed more than 90,000 people during the Second SinoJapanese War. The R.O.C. Air Force brought down 914 Japanese aircrafts and more than 600 on land. “Over 4,000 soldiers were sacrificed in the war, mostly fighter pilots,” Ma said.
Liu Chao-shiuan ( ), president of the General Association of Chinese Culture (
), said that fighter pilots had a high death rate of 50 percent. The documentary includes viewpoints from not only fighter pilots but also from three women, as family members of fighter pilots, who watch their loved ones fight and sacrifice in war. Ma stated that viewing history from the angle of female family members “makes it very unique.”