LeBron James Accidentally Finds Himself in Middle of Taiwan and China Struggle

LeBron James will be taking his talents to the Far East in August in what Nike was calling a tour of China. Problem is his schedule starts in Taiwan, and that government really, really doesn't like even the slightest implication that it's actually part of China. So now officials are threatening to deny James entry into the country.

Taiwan, a large island off of mainland China, has not been under China's rule since 1911. Today they're ruled by the autonomous Republic of China, an actual democracy. Meanwhile, the government of mainland China, the People's Republic of China, a one-party communist regime, considers Taiwan part of China and has its eyes on one day unifying the two governments.

Taiwan, suffice it to say, is supersensitive about any references that it is indeed part of mainland China. So the Taiwanese didn't appreciate it when Nike issued a press release referring to LeBron's planned visit to Taipei as part of Nike Basketball's "China Tour 2011."

LeBron was then scheduled to travel to Chengdu, Xian, and Shanghai in mainland China during the following week.

"We absolutely cannot tolerate anything that belittles our nation," said Steven Chen, deputy minister of the cabinet-level Sports Affairs Council, according to Focus Taiwan.

Chen is mulling over possible actions if Nike does not apologize for the slipup, and would even consider barring James from entering the country.

It appears all press releases referring to James's visit to Taiwan as part of a China tour have been removed from the web.

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.

Sponsor Content

My Voice Nation Help
Michael Wind
Michael Wind

i been to taiwan and china it is two different countries and le bron needs to educated ok he can jump and trow the ball,but he is a long way of being a role model.....


Anyway, formal reunification between the mainland and Taiwan is going to happen sometime soon.

Professor Chu Shulong is proposing a one country two government system - which is what we have already without people saying it.


Taiwan island is governed by the Republic of China. So are the Penghu islands.Mainland china is governed by the People's Republic of China.

Now Trending

Miami Concert Tickets

From the Vault