Cover

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Title page, Copyright, Dedication

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Contents

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Technical Note

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pp. ix-x

For this work, I have used pinyin to romanize most Chinese names and terms. The exceptions are individuals and Taiwan’s major cities more well-known in the 1950s by the Wade-Giles usage. In addition to aborigines and the Hakka people, Taiwan’s population consisted mostly of Han Chinese whose ancestors...

Abbreviations

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pp. xi-xii

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Preface and Acknowledgments

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pp. xiii-xviii

My first encounter with the story of Sergeant Robert Reynolds, the shooting of Liu Ziran, and the subsequent riots occurred in 1987 when I was a graduate student at Ohio University. Months before, I lived in Luodong, Taiwan, for a year as part of a college internship in which I taught English and worked...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-6

Shortly after World War II , the United States possessed Leased Base Agreements with only three countries: the United Kingdom, the Philippines, and Cuba. Although its troops still occupied Germany and Japan, it otherwise was in the process of demobilizing what had been, for U.S. standards, a huge...

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1. A Shooting on Grass Mountain

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pp. 7-10

On March 20, 1957, Master Sergeant Robert G. Reynolds and his wife, Clara, returned to their home after spending the evening playing pinochle with some American friends. A forty-one-year-old native of Maryland, Reynolds had served in Taiwan for just over two years as a member of MAAG-Taiwan...

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2. Islands against the Red Tide

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pp. 11-18

Sergeant Robert G. Reynolds, a member of the U.S. Army, shot a Chinese man, presumably a soldier in the military of the ROC. On the surface, those facts alone would have astounded anyone who understood U.S.-ROC relations in the context of the Cold War. The two countries were supposed to be...

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3. Advice and Dissent

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pp. 19-33

In the 1950s, Americans and Chinese usually did not shoot one another as Sergeant Robert Reynolds did, but U.S. and ROC officials certainly experienced their share of frustration and anger as allies. Alliance friction was practically guaranteed. Besides cultural differences and resentments that...

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4. Little America on Taiwan

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pp. 34-46

Despite Eisenhower’s genuine concern about the number of U.S. bases and troops stationed around the world, a kind of global military sprawl with its inherent costs and potential harm to America’s world image, he had no idea of the scale by which MAAG and numerous U.S. government agencies had...

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5. A Law unto Themselves

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pp. 47-59

The fact that American military personnel and their families enjoyed diplomatic immunity convinced some critics that Taiwan was indeed a U.S. colony. The rationale for extending such protection to its advisors was that MAAG forces were members of the embassy. In 1951, the United States...

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6. A Tale of Two Criminal Investigations

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pp. 60-74

On March 20, 1957, Chinese and American policemen received calls that a U.S. soldier had just shot another man outside of his home on Grass Mountain. Within minutes, Major Han Jiali, a ten-year veteran of the police force and chief of the Yangmingshan Foreign Affairs Police (FAP) section, arrived...

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7. The Court-Martial of Sergeant Robert Reynolds

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pp. 75-84

On May 20, 1957, the general court-martial of Sergeant Robert G. Reynolds commenced at 9:00 a.m. in the Sugar Building, the headquarters for MAAG-Taiwan.¹ The building’s chapel served as a courtroom. Reynolds was one of 5,586 U.S. soldiers to be tried before a general court-martial that year...

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8. Justice of a Different Culture

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pp. 85-100

The acquittal stunned and angered the Chinese. A fifteen-year-old girl from Chiayi, a city in southwest Taiwan, wrote a letter to the ROC Foreign Ministry asking the question uppermost on Chinese minds: how was an individual who admitted to shooting another person found not guilty? The verdict left...

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9. Black Friday

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pp. 101-117

On May 24, the day after Sergeant Robert Reynolds’s acquittal for voluntary manslaughter, the staff for both the U.S. embassy and the USIS offices arrived at their respective workplaces around 9:30 a.m. The normal workday for personnel usually began two hours earlier, but the ROC announced the...

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10. Accusations

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pp. 118-130

In the days that followed Black Friday, American nerves were rather raw and on edge. As a result of the riots, eleven American embassy and MAAG personnel, sixty-two police officers, and eleven rioters were injured. One rioter was dead. Another 111 individuals were under arrest. The U.S. embassy and...

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11. To the Chinese Heart of the Matter

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pp. 131-147

The accusations that a conspiracy involving elements of the ROC government led in whole or in part to Black Friday angered the Chinese, especially the generalissimo, who described U.S. officials in his diary as “irrational” and engaging in “unreasonable wild talk.”¹ In particular, Chiang bristled when...

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12. Repercussions

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pp. 148-163

While Washington and the ROC traded accusations and faced an alliance crisis, the acquittal of Sergeant Reynolds and the events that followed potentially had greater ramifications for the American position in Asia, where the riots gave the United States a black eye. In June, USI A reported that the riots...

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13. Defending the American Bases of Hegemony

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pp. 164-180

The immediate reaction of the Eisenhower administration to the Reynolds riot and the Girard case was to consider troop reductions as a way of lessening tensions and the chances of more incidents. The day after Black Friday, Dulles told his staff that, together, the cases suggested the need to review...

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14. Status Quo

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pp. 181-193

Despite the tensions surrounding Black Friday, representatives from both the ROC and the United States did what they could to show that they were still Cold War allies. There were signs of goodwill. Numerous individuals paid their respects to those Americans injured and expressed condolences. A Chinese...

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Epilogue Warnings Unheeded

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pp. 194-200

In 1960, President Eisenhower visited Taiwan, becoming the first and only Cold War president to do so. The people greeted him warmly. The shouts of “Kill the Westerners” from that day in May 1957 had long since faded. (By contrast, Ike cancelled his visit to Japan, where violent mass protests broke out...

Notes

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pp. 201-248

Bibliography

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pp. 249-258

Index

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pp. 259-270

Photographs

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