Pomfret's China

About Pomfret's China

Is China going to take over the world? Will it ever really become a superpower? Will the Communist Party ever engage in political reform? What do Chinese think of us? What's hot in Beijing, Shanghai, Kunming? What are the Chinese reading? Is there hope for better relations between Beijing and Taipei? What's the best thing written this week about China?

This blog will attempt to provide the broadest take on things Chinese -- in politics, culture, art, society, foreign affairs, economics and business. And who I am to bloviate about these issues? As a young "foreign devil," to use the Chinese term for foreigner, I first went to the People's Republic in 1980 and lived in a 10x15 foot room with seven Chinese guys for a year, played hoops and traveled across the country in packed railroad cars and rickety buses.

After that it was 1988 and 1989 as a reporter for the AP, covering the student-led protests and the June 4 crackdown around Tiananmen Square. I returned in 1998 for another six years as the Post's bureau chief in Beijing. I bought a house in Beijing, wrote a book, "Chinese Lessons," and then decided to exile myself from my adopted "motherland" by moving back to Washington. My day-job? I edit the Washington Post’s Outlook section.

I’ve been asked to close by telling readers what I hope they’ll get from the blog. Actually, I’d like to spin that on its head because I very much want this to be a joint effort. I want reaction, fulmination, criticism and maybe an occasional pat on the head. This won’t be fun without you. China is an amazing place; there are many stories to tell. I hope we can tell them together.

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Comments (27)

rico chipotle:

bill, i'm not sure tibet at the time of the sino invasion was much diferent than most of the world's nations. aside from the victorious allies, most of the world's nations were kingdoms, feudalities, dictatorships and apartheid. most accounts i've read suggest tibtans were much better off than their war-ravaged chinese contemporaries.
t.watkins said: "thru the more than 5,000 years of chinese civilization there have been numerous minority uprisings against majority rule". are you saying china has had majority democratic rule thruout its history? or are you just using western "catch-words" like "majority/minority" to disguise the fact that when not under foreign occupation, china has always been a totalitarian dictatorship, whether by its emperors or cpc?
it isn't only tibetans and uighurs who believe "chinese gov't has instituted cultural genocide".
evidently spain, with its judicial enquiry, italy with its anti-laogai legislation, u.s. senate with its resolution 574, icc with its indictment of al-bshir all share same "beliefs", not to mention ALOT of world's people. china's "internal festering" has long been in full view; it's that "internal" question that seems to be the source of festering.
franken20, as a decendent of amerindians, mohawk of the iroquois confederacy, 1 of 3 oldest functioning democracies in the world and the only to recognize gender equality since its inception, which was @ 150 before mongols invaded china, i say china has no business in tibet nor east turkestan nor mongolia. so what's the problem?

Tibetan in Exile--we need money!: :


Tibetan in Exile--we need money!:

Yes, our Holiness gets all the attention and money (though not from Sharon Stone) from your governments. But what about us who actually do the shouting, grabbing running around in costumes and waving? Sure we are born in the west and never been to China. But that is not the point. The point is that we need the Tibet issue to survive.

The recent events really helped us a lot with more financial support. But is this enough? Certainly not! We have about 30000 Tibetans living in the US. But we have hundreds of local organizations. They are getting very little money. For example, our "Free Tibet" local chapter in Utah only has a budget of just over 400000$. Why so stingy? I think the British is a little more generous. The Germans and French are talking tough but the money doesn't show. Those are peanuts. We get our lion's share from the US.

So please help us. We are really afraid that you will forget us after the Olympics are over. Please!

Tom Watkins:

China's Minority "Problem"-- Is a World Problem!

With the recent earthquake and uprising in Tibet, China seems chiseled into the consciousness of most Americans. Yet, few in the West realize there are 55 nationality groups of people that China officially recognizes as distinct minority groups.

There are the Miao Bai, Dai, Xibe, Jingpo, Usbek, Hui, Mongolian, Yao, Li Wau, Manchu, Dong and Uighurs to name a few. Minorities make up a small percentage of the 1.3 billion Chinese but constitute a large portion of the internal tension. Through the more-than 5,000 years of Chinese civilization there have been numerous minority uprisings against majority rule.


Yet I suspect it's the Uighurs (also spelled Uygur or Uigur and pronounced "we-gar") the world will be hearing more about in the future. I hope for the sake of the Chinese, Uighurs and all of humanity we do not hear of the Uighurs around conflict, terror and bloodshed -- yet, I further suspect we will in one fashion or another.

The Uighurs are a Turkish people and were a major empire in centuries past. The Uighurs converted to Islam several centuries ago. The Uighur population is disputed and ranges from 8 to 15 million strong. They are found throughout China but are concentrated in the Xinjiang (meaning "New Territory" or "New Frontier") Autonomous Region in Northwest China. Xinjiang is bordered by Kazakhstan to the north, Mongolia to the northeast, and Kirghizstan and Tajikistan to the northwest and west. To the west and southwest lie Afghanistan and Pakistan; to the south are Tibet and India. To the east, 1,500 miles away, lies Beijing, China. Xinjiang is so remote that it is obscure or nonexistent to most in the West.

The Uighurs refer to this area by its historical name, East Turkistan or Uyghuristan.

The faces of the Uighurs share few similarities with what is viewed as the typical Chinese, or Han people. They are proud to be distinct. I remember meeting a Uighur man once in Xian, the ancient capitol of China, and the end-point of the historic Silk Road. I asked him his nationality and he said, "Chinese." Then, with a full-mouth grin and looking around the market so not to be overheard, he uttered, "I am a Uighur -- not Chinese!"

Many call the Uighurs the Tibetans' Muslims. The Uighurs, like the Buddhist Tibetans, are asking for more accommodations for their disparate culture and beliefs. The Chinese will respond that many Uighurs are a terrorist faction in bed with al-Qaeda and bent on violent separatist activities. There is fear that Uighurs are planning on disrupting the Beijing Olympics to begin on ba-ba-ling ba, or 8-8-08, to gain notoriety for "their cause."

There have been historical crackdowns on the Uighurs that have been stepped up since 9-11. Many believe the Chinese have used the "international war on terror" as justification to tighten the grip on the Uighur people. Human rights groups contend the Chinese government exaggerates Uighur terrorist threats so it can clamp down on the Uighurs and arrest and torture those they suspect of being dissidents.

Like the Tibetans, the Uighurs believe the Chinese government has instituted cultural genocide against them. The Chinese would respond by claiming that after the 1949 liberation, old feudal religious habits and privileges were abolished and they have removed the control of the "reactionary ruling class" while today the Uighur people enjoy a higher standard of living and more economic opportunities. The Chinese Government sees some Uighurs as terrorists espousing separatist ideology linked with the larger Islamic Jihadist goal to overthrow existing governments and install a religious theocracy. They claim it is for these reasons China must clamp down.

Given these extreme views between the ethnic minority Uighurs and the Chinese government it is just a matter of time before the scab will be removed and the internal Chinese festering sore will come into full view. When the scab is removed, it is likely to be ugly and difficult for the world to ignore. Will the cause be seen as oppression, cultural genocide, employment and economic deprivation as charged by the Uighurs; terrorist attacks of a people longing for independence; or linked to al-Qaeda or Muslim extremists as an act of civil war against the Chinese government?

China's history has been plagued by foreign invaders and internal divisions. Perhaps the greatest fear the Chinese Ruler has is losing control that would splinter China like their old ally, the Soviet Union. The months leading up to the 2008 summer Olympics in Beijing will continue to put the spotlight of the world on China. Forces internal to China and from without are jockeying to share that limelight. China's desire to have a "harmonious rise" will be profoundly tested with the world watching over the next several months.

The Chinese have vowed to never again be splintered by external or internal forces. These realities dictate that we will be hearing more about the Tibetans and Uighurs in the future.

Let's be clear, unlike Las Vagas-- what happens in China- does not stay in China. Unrest in China will impact us all.

Tom Watkins is and education and business consultant. He has a lifelong interest in China and has traveled there many times since his first trip in 1989. He served as Michigan's State Superintendent of Schools, 2001-2005 and President and CEO of the Economic Council of Palm Beach County, FL, 1996-2001. He can be reached at: tdwatkins@aol.com


Tom Watkins:

China's Minority "Problem"-- Is a World Problem!

With the recent earthquake and uprising in Tibet, China seems chiseled into the consciousness of most Americans. Yet, few in the West realize there are 55 nationality groups of people that China officially recognizes as distinct minority groups.

There are the Miao Bai, Dai, Xibe, Jingpo, Usbek, Hui, Mongolian, Yao, Li Wau, Manchu, Dong and Uighurs to name a few. Minorities make up a small percentage of the 1.3 billion Chinese but constitute a large portion of the internal tension. Through the more-than 5,000 years of Chinese civilization there have been numerous minority uprisings against majority rule.


Yet I suspect it's the Uighurs (also spelled Uygur or Uigur and pronounced "we-gar") the world will be hearing more about in the future. I hope for the sake of the Chinese, Uighurs and all of humanity we do not hear of the Uighurs around conflict, terror and bloodshed -- yet, I further suspect we will in one fashion or another.

The Uighurs are a Turkish people and were a major empire in centuries past. The Uighurs converted to Islam several centuries ago. The Uighur population is disputed and ranges from 8 to 15 million strong. They are found throughout China but are concentrated in the Xinjiang (meaning "New Territory" or "New Frontier") Autonomous Region in Northwest China. Xinjiang is bordered by Kazakhstan to the north, Mongolia to the northeast, and Kirghizstan and Tajikistan to the northwest and west. To the west and southwest lie Afghanistan and Pakistan; to the south are Tibet and India. To the east, 1,500 miles away, lies Beijing, China. Xinjiang is so remote that it is obscure or nonexistent to most in the West.

The Uighurs refer to this area by its historical name, East Turkistan or Uyghuristan.

The faces of the Uighurs share few similarities with what is viewed as the typical Chinese, or Han people. They are proud to be distinct. I remember meeting a Uighur man once in Xian, the ancient capitol of China, and the end-point of the historic Silk Road. I asked him his nationality and he said, "Chinese." Then, with a full-mouth grin and looking around the market so not to be overheard, he uttered, "I am a Uighur -- not Chinese!"

Many call the Uighurs the Tibetans' Muslims. The Uighurs, like the Buddhist Tibetans, are asking for more accommodations for their disparate culture and beliefs. The Chinese will respond that many Uighurs are a terrorist faction in bed with al-Qaeda and bent on violent separatist activities. There is fear that Uighurs are planning on disrupting the Beijing Olympics to begin on ba-ba-ling ba, or 8-8-08, to gain notoriety for "their cause."

There have been historical crackdowns on the Uighurs that have been stepped up since 9-11. Many believe the Chinese have used the "international war on terror" as justification to tighten the grip on the Uighur people. Human rights groups contend the Chinese government exaggerates Uighur terrorist threats so it can clamp down on the Uighurs and arrest and torture those they suspect of being dissidents.

Like the Tibetans, the Uighurs believe the Chinese government has instituted cultural genocide against them. The Chinese would respond by claiming that after the 1949 liberation, old feudal religious habits and privileges were abolished and they have removed the control of the "reactionary ruling class" while today the Uighur people enjoy a higher standard of living and more economic opportunities. The Chinese Government sees some Uighurs as terrorists espousing separatist ideology linked with the larger Islamic Jihadist goal to overthrow existing governments and install a religious theocracy. They claim it is for these reasons China must clamp down.

Given these extreme views between the ethnic minority Uighurs and the Chinese government it is just a matter of time before the scab will be removed and the internal Chinese festering sore will come into full view. When the scab is removed, it is likely to be ugly and difficult for the world to ignore. Will the cause be seen as oppression, cultural genocide, employment and economic deprivation as charged by the Uighurs; terrorist attacks of a people longing for independence; or linked to al-Qaeda or Muslim extremists as an act of civil war against the Chinese government?

China's history has been plagued by foreign invaders and internal divisions. Perhaps the greatest fear the Chinese Ruler has is losing control that would splinter China like their old ally, the Soviet Union. The months leading up to the 2008 summer Olympics in Beijing will continue to put the spotlight of the world on China. Forces internal to China and from without are jockeying to share that limelight. China's desire to have a "harmonious rise" will be profoundly tested with the world watching over the next several months.

The Chinese have vowed to never again be splintered by external or internal forces. These realities dictate that we will be hearing more about the Tibetans and Uighurs in the future.

Let's be clear, unlike Las Vagas-- what happens in China- does not stay in China. Unrest in China will impact us all.

Tom Watkins is and education and business consultant. He has a lifelong interest in China and has traveled there many times since his first trip in 1989. He served as Michigan's State Superintendent of Schools, 2001-2005 and President and CEO of the Economic Council of Palm Beach County, FL, 1996-2001. He can be reached at: tdwatkins@aol.com


Wild China Conflict of Interest:

Mr Pomfret's wife runs a business called Wild China which is a tour company. It offers, as one example on their web site:

Research Expeditions
Example: Hosted a leading US museum on an intensive study tour of Chinese gardens. WildChina arranged for private access to exclusive private gardens, including Qian Long Gardens (Forbidden City) and Guo Gardens (West Lake, Hanzhou). Also organized interviews with leading garden expert Ye Fang and other preeminent scholars.

This association of the Pomfret family and this tourism business is a serious conflict of interest for a journalist.

SiMa Qi:

Dear Franken20,

Yes, I am an American living in Asian for over 25 years. I don’t feel that I’m to be held responsible for the colonial acts of my ancestors any more than young Germans should be responsible for the acts of the Third Reich or the Dalai Lama can be held to account over the Feudal system of Tibet, which he inherited. The reference to Alaska is interesting, however. Check out the Native Claims Settlement Act as a model for possible actions of a government seeking to redress the wrongs done to an indigenous people. I spent 5 years there, working indirectly for the Native Corporations created to invest and manage the money on behalf of their Tribal groups. The problems they face are very similar to other nomadic or subsistence based people around the world. They seek to preserve their history, culture, language and beliefs. Despite the harsh conditions, many native Alaskans prefer life in the villages to life in the city; in fact it’s illegal to visit there without permission. It’s my own opinion that the government of China will never offer anything similar to the Tibetan people. I must express a bit of disappointment at the responses of this blog. You can accuse me of hypocrisy, but you fail to answer any of the specific issues I raise. In the discipline of rhetoric this logical fallacy is known as argumentum ad hominum: attacking the arguer rather than his argument. Would you mind commenting on the history or legal aspects of my comments rather than worrying about my national origin? Any comment from you, John?

Frankn20:

Is Sima Qi an "American living in Asia" as he says? As an "American" he questions China's claim to tibet or any other part of China but if he is an American as he claims, he is an invader and an occupier of the lands that he and his parents have stolen. The same is true of Canada, Alaska, Australia, New zealand and most of the 5 continents. So what is his problem?

SiMa Qi:

Dear Trilochana,

The definition of what constitutes a country is a legal issue as defined by international law. Other than that it's a game in semantics: for example my friends from Inner mongolia describe themselves as Mongols although they are Chinese citizens. I've heard 1st hand accounts about discrimination against them for the last 30 years, news of which has been suppressed by the Chinese press. So, was the Yuan Dynasty a Chinese Dynasty or a period in which "China" was conquered by non-chinese. It's a word game. The Qing Dynasty could be similarly described as an "occupation of "China". I believe that most Han Chinese of the time would have thought so. The origin of many of the Chinese Triads is rooted in the resistance to the "outsiders". In fact the map of China under the Manchus which China cites as evidence of their rights ot the Tibetian plateau also includes what is now North and South Korea. Does that mean that Koreans are an ethnic minority of China who simply have been held in ignorance of their true glory as part of the Chinese "motherland". As I said, it's a word game designed to cloak a modern colonialism. By the way, I did read the history and speak with Tibetians personally. Have you taken your own very good advice? Your comments don't seem to be founded in personal experience.

trilochana:

There is no Tibet to free, the Dali Lama, whatever he is, is NO Holy Man,He is a Political Despot, Just check History, or a Tibetan who reallly lives in Tibet,I'll gurantee they don't want their EX Slave Master back to rule their lives!

SiMa Qi:

As an American living in Asia for over 25 years,In Taiwan, Singapore, malaysia and China, I have witnessed the duplicity of these governments and societies 1st hand. I'm bilingual, have a Taiwanese wife, and am an avid history buff. There are serious legal issues surrounding Chinas claim to all or part of Tibet, starting from the written documents surviving from the Tang Dynasty. Anyone who has not personally taken time to look at the documents in question from a legal point of view has right to voice an opinion. Would you expect a judge to rule on a contractual conflict without reading the documents? And yet both sides, (including yourself) spout a lot of simplistic hearsay about the historical basis for this claim, (the worst being the Chinese themselves, who don't seem to have realized that most of what their government tells them is political propaganda, just like the rest of the world.) In spite of the inherent interest of the legal issue, it's in reality just an excuse for colonialism, whether well intended or not. Frankly, I don't care for it whether it's the British, the Dutch or China, All the talk of making peoples lives better (again subject to much greater scrutiny than the Chinese government will allow) sounds suspiciously like every other colonizing power in the 19th and 29th century. What if this is partially about something that's potentially as important to China as Oil or Coal: Water. Anyway, everyone has an agenda, including the Chinese government you, me and the Dalai Lama, and they all stink.

Bill:


Bill writes: Wednesday, April, 23, 2008 5:27 AM
Shortsighted Rabble

To the emotional rabble embarrassing a cause with their callous, ill-informed disruption of Olympic Torch events, evaluating China’s position on Tibet represents a stark moral contrast: “freedom” or “tyranny.” Social causes are never so simple.

Absent clarity, encouraging the central government to continue economic development of this impoverished area and to support integration of China’s minorities is more prudent. I’ve lived here for years. Business travel has taken me to 50+ cities in China. Without fail, leaders I meet are infused with energy, optimism and enthusiasm for the nation’s developmental trends. A sense of balance compels me to wonder:

- What was Tibet before the current government? I think Tibet was a theocracy. The religious establishment consumed an unconscionable proportion of GNP. Today’s zealots yearning for a return to those halcyon days should understand Tibet was never Shangri-la. For all their fervid mantras, the monks assured their yaks had more protections than the women, because yaks had greater economic value. Does our world need more theocracies? I think history sends a message: theocracies serve only the “elect,” non-believers are fair game. Does the world need more rulers governed by “faith” principles divined by religious leaders?
- The current Chinese regime has, arguably, raised the standard of living higher, faster, and for more people than any other in their history. Any responsible group desiring to destroy or impede the steady progress of a nation of 1.3 billion souls should probably have a proven alternative. Informed Chinese people I know convince me they understand their government’s acute fallibility, but favor development, not dismissal. Whatever else they are, the zealots aren’t too smart if they think they are driving a stake into the heart of China’s governors. Popular support for the national government grows exponentially with every new desecration of Olympic symbols.

Bill:


Bill writes: Wednesday, April, 23, 2008 5:27 AM
Shortsighted Rabble

To the emotional rabble embarrassing a cause with their callous, ill-informed disruption of Olympic Torch events, evaluating China’s position on Tibet represents a stark moral contrast: “freedom” or “tyranny.” Social causes are never so simple.

Absent clarity, encouraging the central government to continue economic development of this impoverished area and to support integration of China’s minorities is more prudent. I’ve lived here for years. Business travel has taken me to 50+ cities in China. Without fail, leaders I meet are infused with energy, optimism and enthusiasm for the nation’s developmental trends. A sense of balance compels me to wonder:

- What was Tibet before the current government? I think Tibet was a theocracy. The religious establishment consumed an unconscionable proportion of GNP. Today’s zealots yearning for a return to those halcyon days should understand Tibet was never Shangri-la. For all their fervid mantras, the monks assured their yaks had more protections than the women, because yaks had greater economic value. Does our world need more theocracies? I think history sends a message: theocracies serve only the “elect,” non-believers are fair game. Does the world need more rulers governed by “faith” principles divined by religious leaders?
- The current Chinese regime has, arguably, raised the standard of living higher, faster, and for more people than any other in their history. Any responsible group desiring to destroy or impede the steady progress of a nation of 1.3 billion souls should probably have a proven alternative. Informed Chinese people I know convince me they understand their government’s acute fallibility, but favor development, not dismissal. Whatever else they are, the zealots aren’t too smart if they think they are driving a stake into the heart of China’s governors. Popular support for the national government grows exponentially with every new desecration of Olympic symbols.

Why arn't you post my Jack Cafferty opinion??????:

Koo Yuen

Hwangte:

On many occassions when I read articles written by westerners especially on developing countries, including China, I often sensed that these writers were biased and condescending in nature. Perhaps, they wrote the way they did just to satisfy their readers' expectation who were largely from the west. But, not in this case. John's illustration of zeitgeist or mood swing to bashing China is interesting to read. I do not sense any biasness. The issue: is there a mood swing? Or is it just the continuation of the covet agenda of the west to discredit and destabilize China who now seems to be able to pose more severe threat to supremacy of the west. Western politicians largely perceived China as enemy number one in terms of potential military threat. Thus, destabilizing China would help to minimize this threat, given that the break-up of former USSR has weakened Moscow. It was reported in the cyberspace that CIA through its National Endowment For Democracy fund as well as German state financed Friedrich Naumann Foundation have been planning and financing the anti-China Free Tibet protests as part of the ongoing agenda to humiliate and destabilize China. One may find it difficult to dismiss the possibility of this covet agenda to destabilize China, given that western powers, sometimes working in collusion, had deposed "unfriendly" governments such as those under President Salvador Allende of Chile, Prime Minister Mossadeq of Iran and more recently Saddam's regime.

David:

Dear Mr. Pomfret,

I must comment that you have an unusal last name (a very tasty fish) and appreciate what you are trying to establish.

Nevertheless, I would like to contribute the following comments:
1. I am quite certain that you must be aware of this also since you departed China in 2004. Foreigners have long been addressed as “老外 (pally foreigners)” instead of “foreign deveils” as you have stated. It is similar to Afro-Americans are no longer called Negroes in USA. I think we ought to be impartial so as not to create any misunderstandings especially to those who have not had the opportunity to spend time in China as you had. We all live for the present and future, so let history be “history” that we can learned from instead of resort to for dramatic effect.
2. Everyone is well awared of The Crackdown at Tiananmen Square. The PRC government had demonstrated appallingly. However, the authorities were then ignorant of the resolves to handle the situation and they performed in the only way they knew how then. I do not condoned it and am most ashamed of the incidence, but again, that is history and PRC has suffered and learned to be wiser. Just like USA during the Anti-Vietnam demonstrations in 1969 & 1970, in spite of the fact that USA proclaimed a demoncratic country with all the individual human rights, one student at York University (if my memory is correct) was dead as a result of brutality by the authorities and deaths aslo occurred in Chicago during the crackdowns. I do not think Americans would like others to refer to such embarassing incidences either. Be fair to China and give her a chance. The western forms of liberty, freedom of speech, human rights etc. are relatively new and she is learning and will be getting there in spite of her flaws on her jouney there.
3. You had lived and travelled in China for 2 periods (1980 to 1981 and 1998 to 2004: beginning of economic reform of China and stage of mild economic achievement); I think it will be most enlightening if you will let your readers know your personal experience on the transformation of PRC during these periods. Have you notice that she (PRC) is moving away from “communism” to “socialism” ? Is such change occurring at an increasing pace?
4. China although a developing country at the present moment, will soon join the league of developed economic states and may some day be even a super economic power. However, I doubt that she will ever be aggressive militarily due to the Confuscious culture “各家自掃門前雪, 莫管他人瓦上霜” (put it bluntly, attend to your own business).
5. Finally, the recent Tibet and Daila lama incidence coupled with the Olympic torch relay had triggered off a great deal of animosity. It will be beneficial to the whole world for the Washington Post to commission research into the background history on Tibet-Daila lama-China; whether the series presented by CCTV of China protraiting the slavery under Daila lama rule is the cause of rift between Tibet and China (with her effort to liberate such slavery). Before 1956 when Daila exiled into India after the insurgence and its failure in Tibet, Tibet and China had coexisted peacefully with Tibet as part of China and Daila lama serving as “people representative” to the central Chinese governement for two sonsecutive sessions. This could be the initial steps to your Pulitzer.

Yours sincerely,
David F. Shiu

Zane:

Hujia was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison. All the Western media are crying that China's governmen shows how bad it is when it came to human rights. As a Chinese, a history student, I see that China is making grreat progress from this case.

In early 70s, one guy just wrote a similar letter and sentenced to death -- shot immidiately and hundreds people attended to watch his execution. Late 70s, Wei Jingsheng, did something similar, was sentenced to prison for 20 years.

We cannot expect better from China than this. It has 1.3 billion people. Look at the African American's changing status in the US, American should rethink when they came to attack China's human records.

Zane:

Hujia was sentenced to 3 1/2 years in prison. All the Western media are crying that China's governmen shows how bad it is when it came to human rights. As a Chinese, a history student, I see that China is making grreat progress from this case.

In early 70s, one guy just wrote a similar letter and sentenced to death -- shot immidiately and hundreds people attended to watch his execution. Late 70s, Wei Jingsheng, did something similar, was sentenced to prison for 20 years.

We cannot expect better from China than this. It has 1.3 billion people. Look at the African American's changing status in the US, American should rethink when they came to attack China's human records.

panyujuanli@hotmail.com:

As a foreigner, you can know so much about China!I am so moved! Recently I just want to know something about the main evens in China, and your words just give lots of important information for me. Thank you!

wangfromsd:

I often post against corruption, puppet, malicious manipulate and other deeds and incident inside china. And lots of changes should have taken place in China. And “Rome isn’t built in a day”. And those changes can’t happen within a little time. All we know, whether it fast or slow, the conditions are getting better and better inside china.
Here even the slogan is only to criticize the government not people. But there is so more prejudice, so more anti-Chinese sentiment, so many malicious intentions to split Chinese unity. Welcome the Olympic not only the government but also people. And we know the Olympic game will benefit most of Chinese people.

I appreciate the following post, though a little prejudice..

It is quite absurd that whenever a subject about China was brought up it always focus on communism, human rights, etc. People fail to recognize that every country can take its own route to modernity. The Europeans took the route of colonialism and slave trade. The American took the route of slaughtering of the native Indians. China took a different route which is much more peaceful and non-destructive to other nations.
The current generation of European and American has conveniently forgot that as beneficiaries of their ancestor's crimes and human rights abuses, they also rightfully inherit the guilt of their ancestor's crimes until they fully repaid the damages to the people and nations still suffering from lasting effects of those crimes

HS:

It is quite absurd that whenever a subject about China was brought up it always focus on communism, human rights, etc. People fail to recognize that every country can take its own route to modernity. The Europeans took the route of colonialism and slave trade. The American took the route of slaughtering of the native Indians. China took a different route which is much more peaceful and non-destructive to other nations.

The current generation of European and American has conveniently forgot that as beneficiaries of their ancestor's crimes and human rights abuses, they also rightfully inherit the guilt of their ancestor's crimes until they fully repaid the damages to the people and nations still suffering from lasting effects of those crimes.

Before they clean them-self through good deeds they won't be qualified to play the role of human rights cops. Assuming that role before been guilty-free, makes them disingenuous.

Regina:

Will there ever be a day without China in our lives? Living in California, I can't seem to get away from purchasing, using, something made in China! What happend to having stuff made in USA or Germany, or some other European country? The more we import from China, the more we support their nasty government. So trying to change China is a bit of a joke.

jt:

I hate those blogs that don't give full-text rss.

Bill Lee:

And the overseas Chinese in the Congo, Nigeria,
Peru, Chile, Singapore, Calcutta, Tahiti?
Mayor of Melbourne etc.

You are looking at the geopolitical view, but Chinese
faces are on banana minds soon enough when they
go abroad.

This will be interesting.
We will follow it often, but you may write daily,
but we poor mortals can only step in once a week
in our busy reading of other blogs and emphemera.

Yi lu, Ping An

christopher:

The issue is really quite simple. There are some people in China who through simply believing that being a better person is the right thing to do (call it religion, call it personal cultivation, Christianity, Buddhism whatever)they are abused because their form of Communism demands loyalty only to the state.

China Law Blog:

Welcome to the blogosphere! I read your book and absolutely loved it so I am expecting great things from you on here.

C. Maoxian:

Does this blog have a full-text RSS feed? (If it doesn't, I won't be reading it.)

christopher :

The issue is really quite simple. There are some people in China who through simply believing that being a better person is the right thing to do (call it religion, call it personal cultivation, Christianity, Buddhism whatever)they are abused because their form of Communism demands loyalty only to the state.

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