Parade attendees tell Houston of honor
Updated: 2015-09-15 11:23
By MAY ZHOU in Houston(China Daily USA)
Chinese Consul General Li Qiangmin (front row, fourth from left) takes a photo with Chinese community leaders who were invited to observe the military parade in Beijing on Sept 13. PROVIDED TO CHINA DAILY
On a recent flight back from China, where he witnessed the historic Sept 3 military parade, Paul Chu was bothered by what he read in some Western media.
Chu said he read three newspapers, including The New York Times and Financial Times. "I am disappointed that all of the three papers think China is showing off its military muscles by doing this," he said. "They interpret President Xi Jinping's announcement of reducing military personnel by 300,000 as means to build a stronger military.
"This is totally biased. Overseas Chinese have the obligation to communicate with other people and change that view," Chu said.
Chu was one of more than 100 guests who attended the Mid-Autumn Festival reception hosted by Chinese Consul General Li Qiangmin in Houston on Sunday, including Chinese community leaders who were invited to observe the military parade in Beijing, along with the Shandong art troupe sent by the Overseas Chinese Affairs Office of the State Council.
"This will be the second Mid-Autumn Festival I spend in Houston, and I thank you all for all the support you lent me during the past year," said Li, who stressed that celebrating the 70th anniversary of the victory in World War II and the Chinese People's War of Resistance against Japanese Aggression is to "remember the history, remember those who sacrificed themselves and cherish the peace".
Chu, a renowned physicist and one of only five overseas Chinese in the world invited to view the parade from the Tiananmen Rostrum, said: "It was a big deal for me to attend this military parade. I went not just for myself but also for my father. My father went back to fight for China from the US, giving up everything including the passport. I wonder if he (were) still alive, what he would think. I am glad I could attend on his behalf."
Chu also expressed the sentiment that he and lot of Taiwanese feel that part of the history was overlooked: "I hope to see a better relationship across the Strait with Taiwan."
Business man Kenneth Li said that he was born in Taiwan, raised in Hong Kong and has built his family and business in Houston: "I am indeed very much an overseas Chinese. Through the celebration, I have seen that the Jews are very appreciative of Chinese extending helping hands to them during World War II. Peace is important; we overseas Chinese should work together for a peaceful and better future."
Hu Shaohua from Atlanta said that he was most touched by the sight of World War II veterans during the parade. "This is probably the last opportunity for us to show our appreciation and respect to them," Hu said.
Texas State Representative Gene Wu said that it was a great honor to be invited to watch the parade. "I got to see Chinese from around the world. Everyone is proud to be Chinese and of what China has accomplished.
"Everyone in my family was proud that I was going to see this," Wu said. "I didn't bring any souvenirs back from the parade because my family took them all. My dad took my hat."