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Some Rest and Relaxation in Taipei

Taipei has a history of providing relaxing haven to weary Americans dating back to the days of the Vietnam war, when American troops visited Taiwan for R&R tours between combat tours. While some of this R&R was certainly of the more sordid variety, this element of mid-twentieth century Taiwan Tourism is already pretty well documented. At the risk of being accused of glossing over the skin trade aspect, I’m going to guess that the most welcome part of Taipei R&R for most American soldiers was not booze and girls, but the far more innocent pleasure of being able to stroll around among friendly people without having to worry about being killed. I can only back this up with anecdotal evidence of the many former soldiers I’ve met who’ve spent longer waxing on more innocent memories of their own Taipei R&R experiences than they did on tales of the Taipei neighborhood…