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American Justice In TaiwanThe 1957 Riots and Cold War Foreign Policy$
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Stephen G. Craft

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780813166353

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: May 2016

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813166353.001.0001

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Justice of a Different Culture

Justice of a Different Culture

(p.85) 8 Justice of a Different Culture
American Justice In Taiwan

Stephen G. Craft

University Press of Kentucky

This chapter describes public reception of Reynolds's trial after the “not guilty” verdict was released. While Americans cheered in the courtroom, popular opinion in China maintained that the trial was unfair. These reactions largely differed due to varied representations of the facts of the case, dissimilar legal systems, and cultural perceptions of justice. The Chinese public received its information from local newspapers, which included speculation and the procurator's biased report. The press and government thus failed to properly inform Taiwanese citizens, who had no notion of diplomatic immunity or self-defense. Moreover, unlike the American legal system, a Chinese courtroom has no jury, defense lawyer, or presumption of innocence. Disagreements about the case also revealed cultural differences about private gun ownership, military training, and the worth of human life. Although many U.S. sympathizers maintained that the court proceedings were just, at least by American standards, Craft admits that the court could have extended more effort to appear unbiased and mollify tensions between Chinese and American nationals. As a result of Reynolds's trial, the “anti-American” movement grew rapidly.

Keywords:   Robert G. Reynolds, ROC, Liu Ziran incident, MAAG, Anti-American movement, Diplomatic immunity, Taiwan

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