Chin Kah Chong discusses how he turned anti-communist from a young age, how he started his career by working for a Kuomintang (KMT) party newspaper in Singapore, as well as how he felt about various pro-KMT organizations based in Singapore.
Born to a Hakka Chinese father who had come to Singapore from Meixian in Guangdong, China, Chin Kah Chong distrusted the communists and turned anti-communist from a young age. He became a veteran journalist who started his career by working for the Kuomintang party newspaper Chung Hsing Daily in Singapore. He reflected on how the Daily was plagued by poor sales because it adopted an inflexible stance regarding sales of the newspaper. Furthermore, lack of support from Taipei and pressure from insurgents belonging to the Malayan Communist Party increased the woes of the paper.
Chin also reflected on the influence of the Kuomintang in Singapore in the post-World War II period. He believes that the Kuomintang in Singapore kept a low profile following the 1949 debacle on the mainland. Kuomintang control over the Chung Hsing Daily was quite limited despite being the party newspaper. The British authorities was thus generally quite lenient towards the Kuomintang as long as the Kuomintang did not stir trouble. Chin also shared his recollections of pro-Kuomintang organizations in Singapore, including the United Chinese Library and the Chung Hsing Club.
Chin was sent to Taiwan in 1954 for further training on writing and disseminating political propaganda. He reflected on how the KMT in Taiwan had focused on promulgating the Three People’s Principle rather than lambasting the Chinese communists. He also recalled that both Chiang Kai-shek and Chiang Ching-kuo had visited his group while they were in Taiwan. He also took the opportunity to visit Kinmen to conduct various interviews.
Interviewer: Cheng Yi Meng
Interviewee: Chin Kah Chong
Assess the extent to which media outlets like the Chung Hsing Daily had on shaping perceptions on the ground of the Cold War in Asia, especially given the minimal influence that the KMT had on those outlets.