The National Revolutionary Martyrs Shrine isn't near the top of any list of Taipei's finest tourist attractions. Indeed, some Taiwanese people dislike this place for the same reason many shun Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo. They see it as a celebration of war and authoritarianism, a holdover from a dark period of history.
When I had a free morning in Taipei a few months ago, I did not hesitate to visit the Martyrs Shrine. I went for the same reasons I visited Yasukuni Shrine a few years ago: I'm fascinated by 20th century Asian history, and I think it's important to hear every side of the story. For anyone interested in the history of China, the Martyrs Shrine is an engrossing – if somber – place...
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