An anti-American Chinese propaganda song was performed at the White House last week as part of the festivities welcoming Communist Party leader Hu Jintao to the United States.
The song, known as “My Motherland,” was used as the theme song for the Mao-era Chinese war film “Battle on Shagganling Mountain,” reports The Epoch Times. Both the film and the song tell of a besieged group of Communist Chinese regulars fighting and defeating U.S. forces during the Korean War.
According to The Epoch Times, the New York based anti-Chinese government newspaper founded by members of the Falun Gong religious sect, Chinese nationalist bloggers quickly took to the Internet to share news of what they saw as a propaganda coup. “Didn’t [the U.S.] know?” wrote one commenter on Chinese internet forums. “Where was the U.S. foreign affairs?” wrote another.
On a blog operated by the SinoVision news service, one person writing as “Professor A” said that “everyone knows this Shangganling is from a ‘Resist America, Support Korea’ film, and I think Lang Lang would know that too. If he knew the song’s background and still chose to play it, then you can guess his motivation, or intellectual capacity…”
“Suppose for a moment that Obama was invited to a banquet in China, and he invited an American artist who had performed in China for many years to play an American war song against China, what kind of reaction do you think the Chinese government and people would have? … I think the American government still doesn’t know the background of this song—if they knew, wouldn’t they be offended?”
Stephen Yates, an expert on Chinese-American relations who served in President George W. Bush’s administration, told The Daily Caller that “My Motherland” is a “propaganda song whipping up nationalist sentiment about the motherland in the midst of the Korean War, in which of course the Chinese killed many Americans.” Yates said that the performance was indeed “offensive, knowingly so to anyone who recognized the tune.”
“It would appear that no one on the [National Security Council] or at State either cared to vet the music or cared that it was pro-Communist Korean war propaganda,” Yates continued.
The famed Chinese pianist Lang Lang, who performed the piece at The White House, told the Chinese satellite station Phoenix TV that he chose the piece. “I thought to play ‘My Motherland’ because I think playing the tune at the White House banquet can help us, as Chinese people, feel extremely proud of ourselves and express our feelings through the song,” he said, according to The Epoch Times. “I think it’s especially good. Also, I like the tune in and of itself, every time I hear it I feel extremely moved.”
A former People’s Liberation Army doctor living in the United States said that the performance was nothing less than a propaganda triumph for Chinese Communists. “In the eyes of all Chinese, this will not be seen as anything other than a big insult to the U.S.,” Philadelphia resident Yang Jingduan told The Epoch Times. “It’s like insulting you in your face and you don’t know it, it’s humiliating.”
Over 50,000 American service members are believed to have died fighting Communist Chinese and North Korean forces during the Korean War, also known as “The Forgotten War.” This June marks the 61st anniversary of the start of the conflict, which lasted 3 years and divided the Korean peninsula between the pro-Soviet North and American-supported South Korea. Since the breakup of the Soviet Union, China is seen as North Korea’s only major ally.
“Much of the forgotten war seems to remain forgotten in the US, even in the White House,” Yates said.