In 1949, the corrupt
and fleeing Kuomintang
armies comitted a mass exodus
. Guaranteed American
protection despite all their atrocities, they left behind a rear-guard force on the islands of Quemoy
and the smaller Matsu
, only a couple miles off the Chinese
coast. The CCP
guerilla armies were just about to jump in their boats and follow them, but the presence of the meddling American
fleets stopped that. Thus began 30 years of hostile American
relations that only ended with Nixon
's skillful foreign policy
The Taiwanese Nationalists continued to taunt China, ignoring their fragile state of existence. The Chinese got sick of the whole deal, and set up a whole bunch of long-range artillery cannons on their side, the Fujian province, and started bombing the beejesus out of the now scared and cowering Nationalist forces. The American 7th fleet came by to threaten China with nuclear annihilation, but soon afterwards America stopped recognizing the Nationalists as the legitimate power in China, so it didn't matter any more.
Quemoy and Matsu were military outposts, and the natives were brutally supressed by their Nationalist rulers. The tiring annual tirades of the American media regarding "Chinese wargames" are blown way out of context, considering that the Taiwanese wargames are held much closer to China itself (on the Quemoy islands) than the Chinese navy will ever get to Taipei. Recent travel and travel relaxations allowed tourists to enter the former outposts, but most of it remains off-limits to civilians.