Chinese netizens erupt in anger over Pelosi's Taiwan visit, shows 1.4b people's willpower, confidence in reunification
Published: Aug 03, 2022 11:34 PM
Screens at multiple 7-Eleven stores on the island of Taiwan are found showing the words war monger Pelosi get out of Taiwan on August 3, 2022. Photo: from web

Screens at multiple 7-Eleven stores on the island of Taiwan are found showing the words "war monger Pelosi get out of Taiwan" on August 3, 2022. Photo: from web

Chinese social media has been engulfed with heated discussion and anger after US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited the island of Taiwan on late Tuesday despite repeated strong warnings from China. Experts said the huge attention and synchronous sentiment demonstrates the willpower and confidence of the nation's 1.4 billion people in national reunification. 

On Sina Weibo, China's Twitter-like social media platform, 25 out of 50 trending topics were related to Pelosi's visit to Taiwan, including the top 10, at around 10 pm on Tuesday. The platform crashed for 30 minutes, and many believed it was because of too much traffic. 

At 10:40 pm on Tuesday, just before Pelosi's plane touched down, the views of the livestream of her flight reached more than 83 million solely on China Net, one of multiple news platforms livestreaming the flight. Heated discussion also flooded other social media, such as WeChat and Douban. People shared updated information about the flight and Chinese mainland authorities' responses, and they also exchanged opinions and feelings. 

Anger was one of the major sentiments that dominated the comment sections under the trending hot news. Netizens blasted the US' blatant provocation over the Taiwan question and said that the hypocritical face of the country was once again revealed to the world. 

"Pelosi has been faking it since July and even made a detour just a few hours before she actually landed in Taipei. What she did exactly showed what some US politicians are: hypocritical, sneaky and nasty," read a post of a Weibo user. 

A hashtag "there is only one China" also trended on Weibo, with many celebrities voicing their stance, including some actors and singers from the island of Taiwan.

Many netizens expressed hopes that the Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) could take military actions to stop the Pelosi's visit. Such angry sentiment of netizens peaked at the moment when Pelosi arrived in Taipei. Some expected the PLA to take more direct measures, such as interception of the flight, to prevent Pelosi's provocative visit. More also voiced support for China's restrained responses, saying that the military restraint shows the country's strategic focus. 

"I believe our PLA has the strength to deal with the situation and is considering a bigger picture for the long term," read a Weibo post. 

"What we want to really witness is the historical moment of the reunification of the motherland, not a war," read another. 

Zhang Yiwu, a professor at Peking University, told the Global Times on Wednesday that 

Chinese people's synchronous anger at Pelosi's visit and Taiwan secessionists' provocation demonstrated the overwhelmingly willpower of the 1.4 billion Chinese people for the reunification of the motherland.  

"People's anger stimulated the strong desire for speeding up the process. What happened during these two days will for sure hasten China's pace," he said. 

There were also protests against Pelosi's visit in Taiwan. On Wednesday, screens at multiple 7-Eleven stores on the island were found showing the words "war monger Pelosi get out of Taiwan." 

Civic groups, politicians, and business and industry representatives in Taiwan also took to the streets to protest Pelosi's visit on Tuesday. Those who participated in the rally told the Global Times that the protests and boycotts "will accompany Pelosi wherever she appears in Taiwan."

Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said on Wednesday that Chinese people are patriotic in a rational way. "We have full confidence in our country and our government to firmly safeguard national sovereignty and territorial integrity," she said.

Shortly after Pelosi arrived at the Songshan airport, five Chinese authorities including the Foreign Ministry, Taiwan Affairs Office of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and the Ministry of National Defense issued statements condemning the visit. 

China's Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng summoned US Ambassador to China Nicholas Burns overnight to protest against the visit, stressing that the nature of Pelosi's visit is extremely vicious and the consequence is very grave. The Chinese side will not sit idly by.

On Wednesday, the PLA organized its affiliated Navy, Air Force, Rocket Force, Strategic Support Force and Joint Logistic Support Force and conducted realistic combat-oriented joint exercises in the sea and air space to the north, southwest and southeast of the island of Taiwan.

The PLA will conduct important military exercises and training activities including live-fire drills in six large maritime areas and their air space surrounding the island of Taiwan, in its north, northeast, east, south, southwest and northwest, from Thursday noon to Sunday noon.