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Historian warns some Taiwan media outlets are mouthpieces for China

Chinese-American historian Yu Ying-shih says Beijing's propaganda can be countered by having an education in the humanities

Chinese-American historian Yu Ying-shih

Chinese-American historian Yu Ying-shih (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Prominent Chinese-American historian Yu Ying-shih (余英時) warned on Friday (Nov. 22) of Taiwan media outlets acting as mouthpieces for the Chinese government.

Hosted by National Chengchi University, Yu said in his televised speech: "Taiwanese be aware that PRC (People's Republic of China) propaganda is everywhere, and to ensure it is not successful we must foster humanistic education and humanities."

The highly regarded 89-year-old Academia Sinica historian added that a knowledge of politics, history, philosophy, and other humanistic studies can prepare Taiwanese to counter propaganda. In this way it can stop the spread of disinformation, when the country is facing China's military threat.

Yu studied in Hong Kong in the 1950s and taught at the Chinese University of Hong Kong between 1973 and 1975. Born in China, the scholar said he appreciated the importance of freedom in the self-governing territory and this explained the ongoing protests against Beijing — especially among the city's young college students.

Yu said there were different opinions about the Hong Kong protests in Taiwan. However, he argued, only people with a solid background in the humanities can see through the propaganda and make correct judgments.

Yu warned of China's media infiltration in Taiwan and said some local news agencies act like the Communist Party of China's (CCP) People's Daily newspaper. This demonstrates the need to cultivate education in the humanities.

In related news, a Chinese spy has revealed the CCP's schemes to sabotage Taiwan's democracy through propaganda, according to various media reports.