Perhaps taking a cue from Bart Simpson in a re-enactment of cutting off taking the head of Jebediah Springfield, vandals have beheaded and spray painted a bronze statue of former Republic of China general and leader Chiang Kai-shek in Yangmingshan National Park at Huazhong Park (花鐘公園), Apple Daily reported.
The statue was painted in red on Friday with the words “murderer” (殺人魔) and “228 culprit” (228元凶).
There have been other incidents in the past year with vandalism to statues of Chiang Kai-shek–the majority of cases were reported during commemorations of the 228 Incident last year. Taipei Times reported a spate of vandalism in 2016 across Yilan, Miaoli, and Nantou counties, with one statue being painted with “Taiwan’s Hitler.” There have been additional cases of vandalism against statues of the former leader in Taipei and Taichung.
More recently, a statue of Chiang was vandalized at Fu Jen Catholic University in Taipei in March, with four students being arrested for the act. On February 28 this year, police stepped up security around monuments honoring Chiang to avoid a repeat of the vandalism seen in 2016.
Beitou police are reviewing surveillance footage in Yangmingshan to identify those responsible for the beheading and vandalism yesterday.
Update: A group known as “Taiwan independence engineering team” (台灣建國工程隊) has claimed responsibility for the beheading and vandalism, but did not release names of group members involved. Photos have been released of masked vandals taking the head of Chiang Kai-shek.