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[2021-9-6] NIU Strives for Preserving 14 Kamikaze Aircraft Hangar
Yilan county has retained 14 aircraft hangars during Japanese colonial rule, which preserves the most complete structure of World War Two airbase hangar. Youngsun Culture and Education Foundation held a revitalization and reuse forum. The Foundation says that history must not be forgotten and the tragedies of war must not be repeated. It is expected that the combination of history and humanities with sightseeing tours will lead people to experience the local military scenery and construct a tour route with Kamikaze, in order to pass on the history of 80 years.
This year is the 80th anniversary of Japan's sneak attack on Pearl Harbor in Hawaii of the United States during World War II. Facing the Pacific Ocean near Okinawa, Japan, Yilan has become the base that Taiwanese Kamikaze special attack teams’ sorties at the end of the war. There are 14 aircraft hangars in Yilan County now, as well as many related historic buildings, such as wind measurement towers, Bagua towers, and oil depots, etc.
Youngshan Culture and Education Foundation handled a series of activities subsidized by the Ministry of Culture: "Vision Forum for the Revitalization and Reuse of North-South Aircraft Hangars during the Japanese Occupation Period in Yilan". The "Cultural Forum" and the guided activities were held on the 4th and 5th respectively. Xiu-Mei Zhuang, the chairman of the foundation, said that she hoped to think about how to properly revitalize and utilize through exchange of ides, in order to inherit the history of Kamikaze special attack teams in Yilan. Combining innovation and sightseeing, people can listen to the story of the aircraft hangars and look for the historical footprints simultaneously.
Architect Gang-cheng Fan said that when the Pacific War broke out in 1941, the Japanese army built Yilan airport in Yilan for taking-off and landing for Kamikaze special attack teams. At that time, Yilan had three military airports in the south, west, and north. And beside the evacuation routes (taxiways) connecting the two airports in the north and south, many double-split aircraft bunkers were built, which became a major feature of the Yilan Airport Hangar. Yilan had also become the main bombing target of the U.S military. In order to deceive the enemy, the Japanese military built many fake planes made of bamboos, painting them like red dragonflies and put them on the runway of the North Airport, to lure U.S. planes to bomb.
Dr. Po-ching Wu, the President of National Ilan University, said that six aircraft hangars are preserved in the Chengnan Campus of Iilan University, hoping to obtain central and local government funds for repair and operation by National Ilan University. In March this year, National Ian University opened the "UAV innovation research flight base" at the South Airport. The old runway is the largest fixed-wing UAV test field in eastern Taiwan, with a length of more than 300 meters.
Ji-shan Yang, creative executive director of the Yuanshan aircraft hangar, pointed out that in order to transform the defeat, the Japanese army carried out a special attack team that carried out suicide attacks with the requirement of "one person, one aircraft and one bomb for one ship". After taking off with Gueishan Island as the coordinate, the fighters crossed Gueishan Island first and then turned to the battlefield to carry out combat missions. The most important function of the Yuanshan aircraft hangar is to educate, since only through education can we recognize the serious harm and irreversible impact of war.
Yangshan Culture and Education Foundation said that the vision forum had relevant activities on September 12 and 18, and October 23 and 24. Please refer to the official website of Yangshan on Facebook for relevant information and registration.
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