Pomfret's China

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Should We Give China a Break?

From the lip-syncing imbroglio, to reports on tween gymnasts and Han Chinese kids posing as ethnic minorities, to coverage that's focused on human rights, pollution and China's challenge to West, one could argue that Beijing is getting kicked in the teeth on a daily basis by the Western press.

Are we being too tough?

Some people, like Tim Wu, a law professor at Columbia, think it's a legitimate question to ask. Others in the fraternity of journalists say "we're just doing our job." A few more think we're pathetic and should be tougher on the Red Chinese.

My view of it, as usual, is a muddle. On the factual stuff, what's happening in and around the Games, I say let 'em have it. I've spent years reporting in China, wrote lots of tough stories, got tossed out after the June 4th crackdown in 1989, had my share of run-ins with the local authorities, and saw the thuggishness of the one-party state up close and personal. I have no problem with tough pieces.

But as to the big-think on the meaning of the Beijing Olympics, my basic take is this: the Games are to the punditocracy what a hanging curveball is to an aging home-run hitter. Slamming China is the simplest way out and if you whiff, well, at least that's better than trying to beat out a grounder. Context, nuance, background, depth of reporting, all that kind of stuff really messes up the prevailing narrative which is this - China is a systemic challenge to our way of life and these Olympics prove it.

Let's take two recent pieces from pundits. To be fair, I chose a piece from the New York Times and from the Post.

The Times piece is an Aug. 11 column by David Brooks -- Harmony and the Dream -- in which he says that the world can be divided up into two types of societies - individualist and collectivist. America is individualist and China is collectivist. Brooks then goes on to say that individualist countries tend to put rights and privacy first while "people in collective societies tend to value harmony and duty." So with that Brooks has handily explained why China is a one-party state and we're a democracy. It really is that simple. I guess.

Then Brooks goes on: The Olympics, and particularly the opening ceremony, is a sign of the rise of a collectivist society "to rival the West."

"It was part of China's assertion that development doesn't come only through Western, liberal means, but also through Eastern and collective ones," Brooks states. He then broadens this theory to say: "If Asia's success reopens the debate between individualism and collectivism (which seemed closed after the cold war), then it's unlikely that the forces of individualism will sweep the field or even gain an edge." Takeaway? China is a challenge. Not just because it's big and bad but because they think different over there and the Olympic Ceremony proves it.

I wonder if Brooks has ever seen American marching bands, or line dancing, or visited a high school where the coolest kids are always part of a group - say, the football or basketball teams. I would argue that in many way Americans bow more to the group than the Chinese, which explains why the Chinese party-state has been so intent on forcing comformity.

Even more, I wonder if Brooks has ever driven in China (look out for grandma!), or sharpened his elbows in the scrum that forms each time you try to get off an airplane, or tried to get Chinese co-workers to band together. Let's just say in the decade that I've lived in China (over the course of 30 years), I haven't seen or heard much collectivist impulse except when it was rammed down the throats of ordinary Chinese.

And as to Brooks' point about China's rise being attributed somehow to collectivist impulses. Wait a second. The most dynamic sector of China's economy is the private one. It's a nation of entrepreneurs. It's a culture of entrepreneurs. Look at Hong Kong, or Sydney, or Main Street Flushing and now Beijing, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Chengdu. That's Chinese and it's "individualist" up the wazoo.

Harold Meyerson's piece Aug. 13 - The Drums of Change - got my goat for a different reason. First, comparing the Russian attack on Georgia with the Chinese opening ceremony he opined that it's the Chinese we really have to fear. A 4-hour extravaganza over an invasion. Hmmm.

Meyerson noted that during the parade of athletes China's flag bearer, Yao Ming, was accompanied by a 9-year-old boy who dug two classmates out of the rubble of the Sichuan earthquake. When asked by NBC why he did it, the boy said "he was a hall monitor and that it was his job to take care of his schoolmates," Meyerson wrote, adding "that answer may tell us more than we want to know."

The boy "was a responsible little part of a well-ordered hierarchy," said Meyerson.From that he concludes that the answer "works brilliantly as an advertisement for an authoritarian power bent on convincing the world that its social and political model is as benign as any democracy's."

What am I missing here? How is a sense of responsibility, instilled in any leader, no matter how small, in any society (ever hear of a class president?), taken as a sign of totalitarian brainwashing or a propaganda campaign? Don't we hear this kind of sentiment in the voices of Americans who go down into mines or back into fires to save their comrades? "I'm the fire chief, I couldn't leave my men behind." And so what if it's a 9-year-old? Bully for him. If anything, China's system discourages the type of initiative evidenced by pint-sized hero. Maybe that's the reason he was marching next to Yao.

Meyerson ends his piece with the following line: "A nation that can assemble 2,000 perfectly synchronized drummers has clearly staked its claim as the world's assembly line." That's definitely food for thought.

I guess.

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Comments (289)

lynie:

As a Chinese who live in USA for more than 10 years, I learn about these two countries through my own eyes. Not through media just like some Americans who never set a foot out of their hometown. The western countries are holding double standards and trying to demonize China. Taiwai, Tibet and Xijinag are all weapons they use. If you think they care about the lives of Chinese they you are totally wrong. There is nothing to do with “democracy”, “freedom” or “Human Rights”. It is about national interest.

junetenth:

You Chinese version (http://newsweek.washingtonpost.com/postglobal/pomfretschina/2008/08/post.html) is lot more conciliatory towards China than this English version, but you claim in the Chinese version that these two are of same spirit. Are you kidding?

You sound like you have a balanced view by slapping two extreme views. But the truth is Brooks' article has lots of insights about China and Asian culture, and you wasted your years in China without truly understanding them.

You said "又不是一天到晚写这些不愉快的事情" (Bashing china isn't pleasant and doesn't happen daily). Really? which country are you living?

Maybe you don't post everyday, but every post from you is negative. Granted your ten years in China were not the days when great progress being made, but there is nothing positive, no good story to tell about China? Don't be a hypocrite.

Peter:

Laowai life states,

"My point isn't that people should do nothing, rather I find it shallow and cowardly for people to simply lament a country for perceived injustices which have never been personally experienced."

Laowai life, you seem to be under the peculiarly mainland delusion that if one does not agree with you, they simply don't "understand" China. Unfortunately, many of the people posting here, have in fact lived in China for extended periods, and many speak Chinese quite well. I include myself among them, having taught in rural Sichuan in a situation similar to your own and having studied Chinese language for many years.

Whatever advantages your cultural immersion experience in China gives you, it doesn't help your muddled thinking. Based on your logic, one must have lived in Rwanda in the 1990s to criticize a Hutu power regime. Or one must live in the US to criticize inequities in US domestic or foreign policy. It's not a question of "understanding"; I simply don't agree with you.

rico chipotle:

laogai, i'm no missionary and am personally offended by religion. however i don't support making someone who possesses a picture of DL a criminal. why? i support the universal declaration of human rights.
boycott works and china isn't such a power-house that it could weather a concerted effort.
as for "never personally experienced", i decended from mohawks and east european kulaks. both families disappeared, one to "white man's diseases" another to imperialist pogroms. i have little tolerance for fascism and colonization.
i don't speak for chinese people, tho they certainly need a spokesperson. i speak for those whose rights are denied in the name of criminal "national" ambition. and my "personal vision" was ratified by majority of the planet's nations.
tibet is a sovereign occupied nation who's "supreme lawmaking authority" ha been usurped by occupying forces.
the fact that the enola gay's legacy is disputed is the best answer i can give you. what chance that such a controvery could even surface in cpc's china, with its reputation of firing historians from university posts, banned from publishing, house arrest and arrest for questioning the official version of events?

chinationreport:

I have something really good for you:
'In the race to bash China…stop to read from James Shen'
'Mainstream Western media stages new virtual sport of “Blemishing China Marathon” outside the venues of Beijing Olympics'

I really like the term: China Bashing Marathon. Who won the gold? Shall we vote?

James has some good story to tell here:http://www.chinationreport.com/ChinaBashingMarathon.html

Livin the laowai life:


Rico Chipolte, you are absolutely correct, a boycott is a good way to influence another country. But, then why is it that the Chinese, Israeli, Saudi Arabian, Turkish, Russian, and other repressive regimes have all seen economic growth? My point isn't that people should do nothing, rather I find it shallow and cowardly for people to simply lament a country for perceived injustices which have never been personally experienced. Very few people are willing to boycott an economic powerhouse such as China, and if they try, it is nearly impossible. As a result of continued economic support, China's rule is accepted internationally. If you want to change things, come to China and get to know the people.

I seriously question whether "PEOPLE must be responsible for holding their gov'ts responsible." People mustn't do anything. People choose to do things, and they are often influenced by their own culture and historical background. If the majority of people in China choose to say nothing that does not mean it is the responsibility of westerners to speak for them. Westerners have taken on this role and continue to act as saviors leading the world towards a better age. My question is, are they saviors? I don't think so. I know I can give my students a lot of information they didn't previously have, but it is not my responsibility or right to tell them how to think. You sound like a missionary; you assume your world view is the best world view and anyone who disagrees is doing so because they fail to understand what is going on.

Tibet is not a sovereign nation. Sovereignty is the exclusive right to have control over an area of governance, people, or oneself. A sovereign is the supreme lawmaking authority. The sovereign leader in Tibet is the Chinese government.

Finally, history is subjective! For an example, take the Enola Gay. The Enola Gay was the B-29 Superfortress bomber that dropped the first atomic bomb, code-named "Little Boy", to be used in war, by the United States Army Air Force in the attack on Hiroshima, Japan on 6 August 1945, just before the end of World War II. In 1995 the cockpit of the Enola Gay was put on display at the National Air and Space Museum. There was a huge conflict over how the plane should be remembered; should it be remembered as a great plane which dropped a massive bomb and ended the war, or as an unnecessary evil which killed as many as 140,000 Japanese, most of who were civilians? Seems like a pretty subjective choice to me!

lala laa laa lala:

In Short this article tells us:
What the Chinese have, the American have;
(So called collectivism, individualism, heroism, thugs and corruption)

seems like:
What the Chinese don't have, the American do.
(At least a more sounding political system)


rico chipotle:

laogailife, boycott is a non-violent means of enforcing international law. i have not bought "product of israel" since mid-'80's and have bought no "made-in-china" for several years.
thank-you for perfectly describing the dilemna facing us, mis-rule. PEOPLE must be responsible for holding their gov'ts responsible; while this is possible in the west, in russia and china, human rights activists are jailed, journalists go missing or assasinated.
tibet is a sovereign occupied nation, subject to a brutal occupaion and mass colonization.
history is not subjective; revisionism is and china has done some fast foot-work to cover its crimes.
spurious attacks on DL only beg the lie.

Livin the laowai life:


Rico Chipolte, how are states held responsible for their abuse of power? How is Israel penalized for killing Palestinians? How is the U.S. government penalized for its support of Israel, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, and other repressive regimes? How will Russia be held responsible for its invasion of Georgia? The truth is that no countries respect international law, unless they absolutely have too; which means only the small weak countries. Even the United States says that U.S. domestic law trumps international law, and if any ambiguity exists U.S. law always takes precedent; even if the U.S. has already signed an agreement.

Tibet is not a country, therefore it is not a neighbor to China; It is part of China and under the control of the Chinese government. As for the 1950 UN debate and the U.S. ambassadors comments, big surprise. How strange that in 1950 the United States would condemn a communist country.

Rico, you really need to come to China before you complain. This summer I went to the small city of Ya'an. It is a beautiful city located near the Tibetan area in western Sichuan. While I was there I stopped into a nice hotel and thought about staying there. It was a very nice hotel, probably the nicest in Ya'an. While I was talking to the receptionist, I noticed a group of Tibetan monks sitting in the lobby. No doubt they were headed to the holy Buddhist mountain Emei Shan, as it was going to reopen, it had been closed as a result of the earthquake, the next day. What I found surprising about the whole experience was the fact that the hotel was very very expensive. Even too expensive for me; and I am a westerner with a good paying job and generally have no problem paying for a nice place. I ended up going to a much cheaper hotel down the street, but the thought of how wealthy these Tibetans had to be stuck in my mind. It didn't make sense, but then I began to think. What does the Dalai Lama do with all of his money. People donate millions of dollars every year, not to mention all the books he has written. Where does all this money go? Maybe it goes towards the excessive expenses of the lamas. Next time you see the Dalai Lama pay attention to his watch. I can assure you it isn't a cheap Casio.

As far as forced reestablishment in isolated settlements, the entire area of Tibet is an isolated settlement. More so, you are attacking the very means, the railroad, which has made the area less isolated.

Is serving time in prison reeducation? I would say so. If you go to prison, you learn you don't want to go back. You learn to keep in line and go with the flow. This is true in every country, not just China.

As for borders, they are little more than arbitrary lines drawn up by fallen superpowers. They are seldom justifiable and often the cause of great pain. With that said, the international community agrees that Tibet is part of China. Does G.W. Bush say Tibet is a foreign country? How about Angela Merkel? Or, what about Gordon Brown and Nicholas Sarkozy? I don't think so. No one disputes that Tibet is part of China, except bored liberals with nothing better to do.

Last but not least, history. History often fails to be objective in nature. As a result, we are able to find many varying opinions to suit our own beliefs.

rico chipotle:

laogailife, there's anarchy precisely because certain powers don't respect international rule of law. it's a new era where gov'ts that abuse their power, whether involving their own citizens (sudan) or neighbors (tibet, iraq) are held accountable by the international community; nothing "medieval" about it. chiang kai-chek's 1934 overtures to lhasa were rebuffed and UN resolutions of 1960,1961,1965 condemned 1950 sino invasion and confirmed tibet's right to self-rule. in 1950 UN debate, u.s. ambassador to UN used "aggression/invasion" to describe mao's land-grab.
not only was tibet closed to the outside world in march aftermath, beijing refused access to UN high commissioner for human rights me. louise arbour, after having initailly promised unfettered access to all areas. on retiring she said only 3 countries had refused her access: n. korea, "champagne and diamonds" myanmar, and china. present day tibet is an ersatz "LAMALAND" where independent journalists have interviewed tibetans clandestinely: forced re-location to isolated settlements and land/herd confiscation, forced "re-education" banning DL and religious observance, forced sterilization/abortions, "free" education and health services which are not free and education in mandarin of a han-developed curiculum, arbitrary arrests, torture, summary executions. presently inet and celfone services are shut down. cpc's 3.17B$ investment serves 7.5 M han immigrants while it marginalizes tibetans, bringing pollution to a once pristine nation, while pollution diversion of headwaters of asia's great rivers continues, threatening the livelihood of BILLIONS downstream. my idea of progressive is respect for borders, history and human rights.

Livin the laowai life:

Rico Chipolte, while you are free and encouraged to think whatever you would like, the truth of the matter is that there is anarchy in the world at the international level. States are free to do what they like on their own sovereign territory. The resurgence of the medieval policy of foreign intervention has brought greater ambiguity and confusion to the world scene. Minorities around the world have begun to push for greater concessions and numerous states have been created over the past 17 years; 33 since 1990. 27 of these new states were a direct result of the demise of the U.S.S.R. As Samuel P. Huntington stated in 1993 in his book The Clash of Civilizations: Remaking of World Order, the primary source of conflict following the fall of the Soviet Union will be cultural and religious identities. When the Soviet Union collapsed on December 24, 1991 it left the United States as the sole superpower, and capitalism as the victorious ideology. It was simply accepted that the world had reached the"end of history," as described by Francis Fukuyama in The End of History and the Last Man. The truth, however, is that the world is far from satisfied with the current status quo. Societies around the world understand that it is a volatile time in history and each must stand strong to preserve their own identity. While the United States possesses the strongest military in the history of mankind, they are far from being able to enforce their own ideology upon the entire world. During the Cold War it was more difficult to stand alone. There was a need to align yourself with either the U.S. or the U.S.S.R. Now all you have to do is keep the United States happy. Promise them things. Help out the corrupt politicians with a little election money. And, presto, you have their unfettering support. Who cares if the people would be better off. No one in the world was denying that Tibet was part of China when Jiang Kai Shek, aka Jiang Jai She, was in charge.

You say that Tibet would be a "progressive eco-tourist gem." I question what you mean by progressive? You see, Tibet already is an eco-tourist gem. Thousands of people go there every year. So you must mean it fails to be progressive? I guess that you don't consider the $3.16 billion Qinghai-Tibet railway as progressive, even though it has brought greater investment and growth. It has also opened up Tibet, a wild area mostly unpopulated. I am guessing that you have visited Tibet, Qinghai, and Xinjiang since you are so passionate about the people. So you should know how barren and unforgiving the region is and how hard it is to travel. I would like to say more, but I really want to know how you define progressive; is your meaning directed towards change or a more western-leaning government?

rico chipotle:

chinatown, LOL..the demille school of biblical woe and ultimate triumph.."chinese don't know how to spell pity"..nor freedom..these passages you posted could be taken from a conversation or letter, kaizer willy to his uncle king edward. guess what? all over the planet people are out-working, out-studying out-whatever their neighbors just to get along. nothing unusual there.
irene, very noble and i commend you but the reality on the ground doesn't merit such sentiments. i sympathize with the sacrifice of 1-child policy (and aging population), but mao's 'tibet could accomodate 100M han' still echoes in the rapidly colonized nation. you sound alot like a woman called "chineseheart" on the video blog of youtube's "tibet was is and always be part of china", always asking for patience while beijing consolidates plans for a huge transfer of han immigrants into TAR.

laogailife, i remember some israeli soldiers on r&r in central america who said the same thing about the UN. my take is that UN is what we make it and if international rule of law is to be respected, pre-eminent among nations, UN charters must be adhered to. it's not a police force. PEOPLE east and west have to push their gov'ts into adherence.
maquiladoras are crude capitalism but mexico doesn't supplement export earnings and decimate competition with laogai/child labour.
4.3% of chinese are card-carrying memebers? i'd recently read that cpc's allied elite represented 3%; thru a maze of holding companies, they also control 90% of china's wealth. just below them is a 15% "middle-class". these are the 2 classes who claim democracy could never work in chna and who imprison those who say it could.
spain's judicial enquiry drew a visit from hu's your daddy jintao and a warning of "damage" from china's foreign ministry. if beijing withdrew from east turkestan, problems would cease. just as washington drove sudan (madelaine albright) and iran into beijing's embrace so beijing has driven uighurs to al-queda-"ish" embrace of "terrorist/freedom-fighter".
i disagree with your speculation on "what if mao hadn't invaded occupied colonized tibet". tibet resembled most nations of the era, kingdoms feudalities dictatorships apartheid, and were by all accounts better off than contemporary chinese. i think today's tibet would be a progressive eco-tourist gem but helas has been replaced with an ersatz "lama-land", maintaining inet and cel-fone black-out til october. uighurs will be left alone where? han immigrants have taken all the best airable land, water sources..again, just like israel in palestine.
5-mao club exists, just like overseas chinese students rallied up for torch "protection".
it's not the "fault" of the chinese who are the cpc's biggest victims. but of course they don't understand this because of censorship and propaganda. and it's a shame their full potential is put in check by a regime which clings jealously to its power.
legalal, patriotism and 'unite the motherland' are the new gospels of cpc cult vision. many of world's people dislike washington but if they had to choose....africans recently refused to unload a cargoship loaded with chinese arms.

chinationreport:

Peter,
Self Pity?
The silent Chinese does not self pity. He/she is angry at those biased bigots.
You can't tell the difference?

Take a look at this one:
China fakes Olympics, America fakes everything.
http://blog.chinationreport.com/2008/08/20/china-fakes-olympics-us-fakes-most-everything/

Kiss of X:

Hacker finds cache spreadsheet revealing Chinese gymnasts' true ages:

http://strydehax.blogspot.com/2008/08/hack-olympics.html

14

Check it out! (while you still can)

Livin the laowai life:

Peter,

Concerning the question, should countries "mind their own business?" My answer is indefinitely yes. Countries should do a better job of governing themselves before for they begin trying to fix the world. And if you as an individual want to fix the world, go to the place where you are needed and work hard. Simply lamenting a country for perceived injustices that have never been personally experienced are rather... hollow. More importantly, the Chinese people have many opportunities to decide for themselves what is right and wrong. I have a feeling you overestimate the strength of the CCP; There are roughly 46.3 million card carrying members, or 4.3% of the population. How is it that 4.3% of 1.3 billion can be in total control. The truth is, the Chinese people have a lot of freedom in some ways and very little in others. This creates many problems. For one, it gives the western press an opportunity to define the country in a more negative way. Members of the press are able to choose which story to run. As a result of some pathological urge to demonize and criticize, writers and editors often unfairly focus on the bad aspects of life in China. Come to China. I'll show you its beauty.

irene:

yes, you said it.but maybe those man can not understand it and they also dont want to understand it.those critics, you can say there the policy of chinese goverment is wrong, but you cant understand the real feeling of common chinese forever.we will prove and improve it just as we like.please keep polite for different culture to show your better "human rights"

Livin the laowai life:

rico chipotle,

If we have learned anything from the recent events in Georgia, it is that the United Nations is useless. It is a hollow, money-sucking, failure that should be dismantled as soon as possible. How has the United Nations helped solve any of the problems in Africa, the Middle-East, Europe, or Asia. The superpowers are free to do what they would like, and they do. As far as the World Trade Organization, it is simply an international economic institution that is responsible for setting the rules of trade. In particular, they are interested in non-discrimination, reciprocity, binding and enforceable commitments, transparency, and safety valves. And while these sound important, they are in no way enforceable. Yes, the WTO will listen to complaints, but it has very little power. More so, you have hypocritical complaints being made. The United States complains about Chinese government subsidies, yet look at how much money the us sinks into technology, defense, and agriculture. Or, you have Mexico claiming that China is luring away it's foreign investors. Didn't Mexico lure away foreign investment from the U.S. after the signing of NAFTA? These Neo-liberal institutions are little more than a front for westerners to lament any civilization which is a little bit different from their own.

As for the Spanish inquiry, Spain has some ridiculous law where judges have the right to try foreigners suspected of genocidal acts that have taken place outside Spain. I wonder how the Spanish feel about the Inquisition, Christopher Columbus, or the Franco regime. In fact maybe the Spanish are so interested in genocide because they have been so good at it in the past. At any rate, I am not trying to belittle the very vicious and atrocious crime of genocide, I am just trying to make the point that every nation has had problems. The Tibetan/Uighur problem is a serious problem, but it is not a problem which has been solely created by the Chinese. If Tibet were a country it would be headed by His Holyness the 14th Dalai Lama. It would be an autocratic government, dictated by religion and controlled by priests. Currently the West is trying to dismantle similar regimes, yet they somehow support the idea of Tibet. Concerning the Uighurs, some are acting as thugs and terrorists and they are getting what they deserve. If they would live harmoniously with the Chinese people, they would be left alone. There are 56 minorities in China, and I have been lucky enough to get to meet some of them. Our conversations have never focused on human rights, nor have they ever mentioned being repressed. In fact, there are several minority colleges established around the country which provide a great education for a fraction of the cost. By the way, this is where most of the U.S. peace corps volunteers work.

As for the "5-mao club," I have never heard of it. I have heard of the "Gang of Four." Maybe this was your meaning?

Finally, I am not paid by the Chinese government to blog on the internet. If I was it would be awesome, but unfortunately I must work. I am an American working as an instructor at a college in Sichuan and my life has been changed for the better as a response. I love the Chinese people and the spirit that lives within them. I love their ability to look ahead and smile. While the rest of the world is concentrating on their faults, I see their potential. Come to China. I'll show you around.


Irene_seeworld:

I sometimes thought maybe we can take the country as the enterprise, what the leaders are trying to do is to well manage the whole country. Sometimes the leaders should be as "King" (or at least as wise men) to tell the people about the future of the country and direct the national doing, and sometimes they should hear the voices of all the people and follow the voices.

The Chinese word "和" has another meaning that is balance and mixed. So we never thought we should be totalitarian or collectivist. If so, it's too absolute. We call for the balance, nether totalitarian nor democracy, nether collectivist nor individualism, maybe just mix all of them, and find the harmony.

And if you see the enterprise, you can find the totalitarian together with the democracy. What we Chinese can do is to make the system alike to identify whether we should appreciate the collectivism and use totalitarian, and whether we should call for the democracy and appreciate the individualism.

Peter:

Chinanationreport,

Please see your post "a silent Chinese" for the victimhood and self pity part. Racist, no, deluded, yes.

Chinationreport:

Peter,

What is your logic to call me self pity?
Are you kidding yourself?

Chinese people are the last people to self pity!! You don't believe me? Trace back all the way to the time Chinese built railways in California. Did we ask for affirmative protection/compensation?

No, Chinese people will work harder, study harder, take your jobs away or your children's jobs away, occupy your top schools, your children's top schools. Chinese people don't know how to spell self pity. You can have the pleasure to enjoy that victim mentality as long as you stay ignorant.

Don't regret when you one day wake up and realize it is too late for you to catch up...

I know you have a new name waiting for me next, how about calling me racist? I would love to hear that from you! From victimhood to racism.

From:
http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice
who stubbornly reminds you to read more and judge less!!

Peter:

Chinationreport,

Instead of debating issues through to the end, you break off and resort to the "China, world victim" narrative, including the stock threats to beware.

Speaking only for myself: it isn't the Chinese government that bothers me, but the blind victim complex that informs responses like your own.

Is China being oppressed by the words on this blog? Am I oppressing the Chinese people by debating here?

Please stow the self-pity.

irene:

haha,it is so strange. we chinese, if i said i love my country and i live a happy life, you think i am deceptive.However, if i said i suffer so much and hate it, you think i am a real chinese. you are so ridiculous. So please continue to angry with such thing of our chinese country. we will view it as a very intereting film or novel.

Chinationreport:

At the risk of being labeled as a CCP - I have to laugh at myself - I am going to quote this again from 'a silent Chinese'

What do you want from us?

When we were labeled as Sick Man of Asia, we were called The Yellow Peril.
When we are billed to be the next Superpower, we are called The China Threat.

When our doors were closed, you launched the Opium War to open our market.
When we embrace Freed Trade, you blame us for Taking Away Your Jobs.

When we were falling apart, you marched in with your troops and wanted your “fair share”.
And you killed, burned, maimed and looted, we were broken into pieces.
Just go to the British Museum and The Louvre, which of those Arts and Relics were bought fair?

Never again, we said, we stood up and fought for our survival.
And piece by piece we put our nation together again,
“Free Tibet” you screamed, “it was an invasion!”
Never mind, that those who shouted did the original invasion.

When we tried Communism, you hated us for being Communists
When we embrace Capitalism, you hate us for being Capitalists.

When we reached a billion People, you said we were destroying the planet.
When we try limiting our numbers, you say it is human rights abuse.

When we were poor, you treated us like dogs.
When we loan you cash, you blame us for your debts.

When we build our industries, you called us polluters.
When we make your consumer goods, you blame us for global warming.

When we buy oil, you call that Exploitation and Genocide.
When you fight and invade for oil, you call that Liberation.

When we were lost in Chaos and Rampage, you wanted Rules of Law for us.
When we uphold law and order against Violence, you call that Violating Human Rights.

When we were silent, you said you wanted us to have Human Rights and Free Speech.
When we are silent no more, you say we were Brainwashed-Xenophobics.

Why do you hate us so much? We asked.
“No,” You Answered, “We don’t hate You.”

...
What do you really want from us?
Think hard first, then Answer…

Because you only get so many chances,
Enough is Enough, Enough Hypocrisy for this One World.

http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice
Blog:
http://blog.chinationreport.com/2008/08/03/what-do-you-want-from-us/#respond

Anonymous:

"China is a complex society"

This is not directed at Peter

Really, as appossed to simple societies? China is no more complex then any other society, it just wants everyone to think it is. It is part of its self importance, we are complex while the rest of you are not, we are better. lol... The misunderstandings go both ways, period. It is also a part of its excusses. We are complex, do not get involved, you will never understand, etc. etc. etc... It is also part threat, we are complex and if you make mistakes because you are all to stupid to understand our complexity, you will regret it. HOW? If china is complex, has it not always been so? The term middle kingdom is to denote a position of superiority, just like the land of the rising sun, some how better. Ya, right. Gives us all a break. The misunderstandings are born from a different moral code and world view. To understand China is to agree with it, because if anyone disagrees, they must not understand, what BS. Even if a westerner lived in China for 20 years and spoke several of China's languages, yet did not agree with certain things, they would label them as not understanding, period. They do it to make themselves feel better, like justification so they never trully have to question critically the things other point out as being in thier view wrong. Second, do you actually think people need to understand china or even that most in the west even care???? No they don't to both. I do not understand the importance China places on golds at the Olympics or that they spent a fortune to get them to think it is stupid.

Anonymous:

No break for China

Peter:

Livin the laowai life,

At the risk of being rude: how long exactly does one have to live in China to "understand" the society? Exactly how fluent does one have to be? Does living in China and speaking Chinese well bestow clear vision?

Your point is well taken: China is a complex society, one that is changing rapidly, socially and economically. And, naturally, command of Chinese and residence in China affords opportunities for insight.

But your principle of "you don't have the right to criticize" is hollow. If the US President suddenly declared martial law, locked up opposition politicians, and dismissed the Congress, should other countries just remain silent? Should they just say, "All governments are repressive. It is up to the people of a given society to decide what is acceptable and what is not", and mind their own business?

More importantly, how exactly are people in China able to "decide what is acceptable and what is not"? Isn't the whole issue that the Chinese government takes it upon itself to make these very decisions? How exactly are the Chinese people involved in this process?

Instead of apologia, how about a concrete discussion of exactly what mechanisms might allow Chinese people to "decide what is acceptable and what is not"?

rico chipotle:

laolife, your wrong in that beijing is signatory to UN and its universal declaration and other accords concerning human rights and WTO trade practices. there are indeed alot of things the chinese people need to hear: spain's judicial enquiry into li peng, jian zenim and hu jintao's roles in possible genocide in tibet, italy's anti-laogai legislation introduced last year, u.s. senate resolution 574, tabled in may, 2008 which condemns gross uighur human rights violations, especially women and tantamount to genocide, icc indictment of beijing's client al-bashir of sudan for genocide.
as for olympics, doping and androgeny are "personal" matters whereas underage athletes receiving new "updated" passports is an official matter. do i need to learn mandarin to understand this?
t.w., have you heard of the "5-mao club"? beijing is leaving nothing to chance and has a new ambitious program of training people to "work the web" which is why you not only see blog sites thick with "shills" but you'll see many of them posting the same verbatim propaganda. they're evidently paid by the post.

Livin the laowai life:

How many "bloggers" in this thread have been to China? And if you have been here, for how long? As the author of the original article points out, it is very important to know the language and spend some time with the Chinese people before you begin to try to understand their social system. It is easy to criticize, and to a large degree the Chinese need to hear it, but there is an appropriate way to do it. Unfortunately, too many people in the west, and particularly in the United States, have forgotten about manners. More so, Americans need to clean up their own country before they begin preaching to others. All countries have problems. All governments are repressive. It is up to the people of a given society to decide what is acceptable and what is not. you cannot and should not force your own beliefs and social structures onto another people. It simply doesn't work. Change won't come until the people are ready for it. The Chinese people know things need to change, but they also know change is happening everyday. It is truly hard to socially define China at the current moment in time. Every time you try you realize too much is going on and you do not know where to begin. More so, it is nearly impossible to predict where this change will lead. Possibly this is why the Chinese are happy with the pace of progress!

Anonymous:

"China's financial system is not a clone of the West's. It cannot be understood using exclusively Western concepts and models, let alone taking for granted that unless it fits our models it cannot and therefore does not work. Reality in this world is more complex and diverse than our models."

When you refer to financial system, you are not specifically siting China's banks, correct? The same banks that required several hundread billion dollars in government bail out around 5 years ago in order to write off non-performing loans before they went public. Considering last year both KPMG and E&Y estimated that the Chinese banking system once again has hundreads of billions in non-performing loans.

Two things I know for certain;

1. No one and nothing has the whole truth, but most things have at least a little bit of truth.
2. Nothing is ever as good as it seems and nothing is ever as bad as people make it out to be.

When you look at the extremes created by bias and perception, things almost always fall somewhere in the middle.

tw:

It's quite disturbing how the comment sections of so many blogs relating to China have literally been taken over by CCP shills.

rico chipotle:

mr. heselton, excellent post. i'd like to mention 1 thing; while china has never invaded any western nation, it has invaded and annexed 4 eastern countries: manchuria, mongolia, east turkestan and tibet. the subsequent occupations have led to deaths with estimates in excess of 10 million and "policies", especially against women, which are tantamount to genocide.

Peter:

Chination report,

lame response. I'll say no more.

chinationreport:

Peter,

How do you know Chinese citizens are silent about their government? If you have a fight with your mother, do you tell your neighbors? If you have fights with your mother, do you want your neighbors to do the same?

I say no more.

Read Christopher Heselton's response.

From:
http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice

Citizen of the post-American world:

Anonymous: "... most people consider a countries stock market as a major gauge of its prosperity."

In China's case, those who do so are wrong; which is why they can't understand where China's prosperity truly originates from.

Keidel: "... the strength of Chinese finance is a bank-based system for supplementing the budget resources needed for public investments -- especially in infrastructure... Most poor countries fail to finance even minimally infrastructure... A PREMATURE DISMANTLING OF THIS FINANCIAL SYSTEM, AS URGED ON CHINA BY FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS AND FINANCIAL INTERESTS, WOULD PROBABLY PRESENT THE GREATEST DANGER FOR ITS SUSTAINED ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT... In the meantime, companies and individuals are directly reinvesting their cash profits and savings in either their own business or those of close associates. This funding has become the single largest and at the same time the most market-oriented aspect of China's financial system. China's financial system rather than a liability, is on the whole a source of confidence in optimistic growth scenarios." (my emphasis)

China's financial system is not a clone of the West's. It cannot be understood using exclusively Western concepts and models, let alone taking for granted that unless it fits our models it cannot and therefore does not work. Reality in this world is more complex and diverse than our models.

I suggest you read Mark Leonard's "What Does China Think?" --- It may help you discover that China indeed thinks; for it is full of high level intellectuals who debate these issues on a daily basis, who are consulted by Chinese authorities and who have a considerable degree of influence on them.

That implies, of course, abandoning the laughable view that China is made up of slaves in permanent conflict with a handful of tyrannical leaders who happen to exist only to exploit them. In other words, it means that we cease to believe our own propaganda and begin to understand WHY Pew recently discovered that 85% of Chinese citizens considered themselves satisfied with the current national leadership.


Christopher Heselton:

As an long-term American resident in Beijing, fluent speaker of Mandarin and a student of Chinese History, I must say bravo to the article.

Although China's non-democratic totalitarian state does warrant tough criticism, Western media does need to face its more overbearing attitudes in terms of gross simplifications of Chinese society as the "Collectivist East" versus "Independent West" and villification of a state that has never invaded a Western country (whereas Western countries cannot say the same in return).

I sometimes feel that China-critical articles in the media often act as an easy story for the media. It's very easy to get a story like that because we all know the buttons not to push. Few, however, work hard on positive stories about the immense social change and progress, increasing rights or the local triumphs against the government. Perhaps, these stories are too difficult to research or not enough Western readers are interested or perhaps journalist lack the skills and drive to pull it off (after all, out of 20 foreign journalist I have known in Beijing, only one could even speak the language worth a darn. Pathetic!)

Anonymous:

"The simple fact that what the author says strikes you as "a wake up call to the US" is the best indication that Mr. Keidel deserves a better ride for his money than your non-argument gives him."

My Non-argument was to state that there are many opinions, not to discredit the one given. Second, if economic predictions are anything, most people consider a countries stock market as a major gauge of its prosperity. How does 55% down for the year strike you???? In the west it would be viewed as a major bubble bursting.

Peter:

Chination report,

The point is that Saudi Arabia's actions -- no matter how repugnant -- do not equal genocide, as occurred in Sudan. It was excellent that you cited at such length the World Policy report on US Cold War policy in Zaire. But you seem utterly clueless as to the implications of your citation:

Specifically, US citizens and media protested vocally against US policy in Zaire during the Cold War. And the press and academia has since spent a lot of time excoriating the US government for those mistakes, as is appropriate. Contrast this with the absolute silence of Chinese citizens regarding Sudan. It's stunning. There seems to be NO attempt to hold your government accountable.

Moreover, the source you cite is a US publication, based in New York, part of the free press which holds our government accountable for misdeeds past and present. Where in China is there a publication that holds the government accountable for past and present misdeeds? You seem utterly unaware of the irony that you cite freely available US sources to make your case!

No government is perfect. But you seem to lack the ability to hold your own government accountable for anything.


rico chipotle:

citizen, torch rally certainy was a scandal with its goon-squad escort and student-hired thugs assaulting protesters. it would indeed be an excellent case study..in fascism.

rico chipotle:

postworld, what a crock. the torch rally was a scandal with its goon-squad escort and hired chinese-student thugs assaulting protesters. it would indeed be an excellent study..in fascism.

Citizen of the post-American world:

Independent wrote: "The "coverage" of the Olympics by this paper, NBC, and likely other media outlets has been chauvinistic, jingoistic to the point of verging on what would one would expect from propaganda offices in authoritarian countries during the height of the cold war... Most of the American media should, but likely will not, examine their "coverage" of these Olympics to try to evaluate how "objective" and "fair" their coverage was." ---

That is an excellent suggestion, Independent. Serious people in US journalism should refer the coverage of the Beijing Olympics by US media (including the disgraceful anti-Chinese campaign surrounding the Olympic Flame), to our best schools of journalism, where it would likely become the case study par excellence. There would be so much for everybody (but more particularly for those in the trade) to learn from it, that the results would deserve to be published by one of the most renowned publishing houses in the country, to be used by leading anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists, not to forget psycho-analysts...

Mind you, even more could be learned if was also considered the coverage of those events by the CBC (Canada), as well as by the French and by the German media... There are striking similarities to be found, which point to how much of this may have even been orchestrated, internationally... "Western coverage of ..."

Enough: I already feel excited at the mere thought of contributing to such a study!

Nothing like that will ever happen, though. Those concerned are much too terrified to even consider opening their minds that broadly. Better that everyone concentrate on the task at hand ("nose to the grindstone!") and keep on manufacturing consent the best way one knows how.

Good news is, today's world is vast and offers many other valuable, non-traditional sources of information one can always turn to. That yesterday's professionals frown upon such sources need not deter us from comparing for both quality and integrity.


Wills:

Anonymous:

Do you think it is fair and proper that you (or any communist indoctrinated Han Chinese represent all minority (actually Tibetans, Uyghurs and Mongolians are not ‘minority in their homeland, Chinese supposed to be ‘minority’ there ) ethnic groups by your self and answer the question like if there is racial/ethnical issue in Tibet and Xinjiang/East Turkistan? Why do not you try to ask a Tibetan or Uyghurs? One very simple question for all Chinese, why you guys hate Japanese so much even after 60 years and most of you have never seen Japanese solder and its occupation?. Nowadays, for Tibetans and Uyghurs, Chinese are worst than Japanese, Communist Chinese is worst than Kuomintang( Nationalist Party) Chinese, Hujintao is worst than Maozedong or any other previous Chinese leader. We, Tibetans, Uyghurs and Mongolians suffered so much from China.

Think about your situation under Japanese control; please do not always claim and say that(of course no one can stop you) Tibet and East Turkistan were part of China many centuries ago, I admit that right now geographically Tibet and East Turkistan are part of china, because China has a strong army, you have gun and most importantly you were indoctrinated so deeply by your brutal, inhuman and terrorist communist regime.

However, never, ever forget that Uyghurs are not Chinese, they are Uyghurs; Tibetans are not Chinese, they are Tibetans and Mongolians are not Chinese, they are Mongolian. Just like Chinese were not Japanese, not French, not English and not Protégées because they were invaded and occupied by them.
=======================================

Don't play a game and we see through your trick here. Are you Uyghurs ,Tibetans,or Mongolians? You suddenly could represent so many people and have such broad connection with those people? Are you doing a professional job,we wonder?

We do not dislike Japanese. We do not like their politicians' glorifying their war criminal,who you know were acknowledged by the world.Don't make us wrong here. We have good friendship between ordinary Chinese and ordinary Japanese,take myself for example and look at the booming Japanese business in China.

Whatever you called trying to make some of our Chinese ethnic groups different from "Chinese", we do not buy it,period.Your claim will be respected not by us.We Chinese decide our own fate.

Being a instigator and gloating at other people trouble and suffering is your profession.We are quite aware of that! It is no surprise for us to know that you are one part of those bashing China for anything at any lame excuse.

We Chinese are friendly to the world.Maybe sometime we are too nice to some professional scums.Hmmm....we would think about that.

Please Admit the truth:

The American media would have loved to have the issues of lip synching and underages as a bonus, had the United States commanded an overwhelming lead over the Chinese in gold medals. It would have been something extra to boast about along with the medals. This didn't happen and China holds a 2:1 advantage in golds. So did the American news networks turn in desperation to ridicule the Chinese government, in a case of sour grapes? No. They would have ridiculed China whether America was ahead or not in the gold tally.

Independent:


The "coverage" of the Olympics by this paper, NBC, and likely other media outlets has been chauvinistic, jingoistic to the point of verging on what would one would expect from propaganda offices in authoritarian countries during the height of the cold war. NBC has fairly good coverage of events when there are no Americans competing or out of contention, such as in the women's marathon. Compare this, as an example, to a beach volleyball event where the NBC announcers talked almost constantly about the two Americans, while the two Chinese women kept scoring points and won. Most of the American media should, but likely will not, examine their "coverage" of these Olympics to try to evaluate how "objective" and "fair" their coverage was.

"The Post" is shamefully nationalistic in counting bronze medals as equal to gold medals in its medal tally, to claim the United States is "winning." Compare the medal tally by "The Washington Post" with BBC.

LegalAlien:

Human Rights and Democracy become the new religion in America. Those pundits are no more than ambitious missionary willing to convert the rest of the world. People other than the West just disgust it.

Anonymous:

When Gao Chuancai slipped into the capital last week hoping to stage a one-man rally against corruption in his village in northeast China, he knew his chances of success were slim.
During his decade-long crusade, Mr. Gao, a 45-year-old farmer from Heilongjiang Province, had been jailed a dozen times. Two beatings by the police left him with broken bones and shattered his teeth, he said, but did little to temper his drive for justice.

The government’s recent announcement that preapproved protests would be allowed at three sites during the Olympic Games gave him a wisp of hope. Two weeks ago he mailed in his application, and last week he came to Beijing to follow up. During a visit to the Public Security Bureau on Wednesday, the police interviewed him for an hour and then told him to return in five days for his answer. “They’ll probably arrest me when I go back,” he said afterward.

Mr. Gao did not have to wait very long. A few hours later, he was picked up by the authorities and escorted back to Heilongjiang. On Monday, his son, Gao Jiaqing, in the family’s village, Xingyi, said he had not heard from him.

A man who picked up the phone at the Wanggang police station, near Xingyi, acknowledged that Mr. Gao was being detained at a local hotel. “He’s under our control now,” said the officer, Wang Zhuang.

Mr. Gao’s ill-fated odyssey is not unlike the journeys of several other would-be demonstrators who responded to the government’s notice that protest zones would be set up during the Games. At least three other applicants are in custody. Two, Ji Sizun and Tang Xuecheng, were seized during the interview process at the Public Security Bureau, according to human rights activists.

Ten days into the Games, the government has yet to permit a single demonstration in any of the three official protest zones. According to a report Monday by Xinhua, the official news agency, 77 applications have been received since Aug. 1, from 149 people.

All but three of those applications, however, were withdrawn after the authorities satisfactorily addressed the petitioners’ concerns, Xinhua said. Two of the remaining requests were turned down because the applicants failed to provide adequate information, and the last was rejected after the authorities determined it violated China’s laws on demonstrations.

Protests are not illegal in China, but they require government approval, a prospect that often dissuades citizens, daunted by excessive bureaucracy or potential retaliation. Posters and slogans must be submitted to the police, and each participant must apply in person. Any rally deemed a threat to “social stability and public order” can be denied permission, and most are.

Nicholas Bequelin, a researcher at Human Rights Watch, a private group based in New York, said he and other rights advocates had been skeptical that China would fulfill its pledge to allow greater free speech during the Olympic Games. Still, he said, the International Olympic Committee should be held accountable for not pressing China on the issue. “The I.O.C. seems oblivious to the fact that they’re holding the Games in a repressive environment,” he said.

Giselle Davies, spokeswoman for the I.O.C., said she hoped that Beijing would follow the path of other host cities and allow demonstrations to take place in designated areas but that the issue was one for local officials to decide.

For Mr. Gao, the five days he spent in Beijing were both nerve-racking and exhilarating. He said he knew the police from Heilongjiang were on his trail, but he was buoyed by the possibility that a foreign reporter might tell his story. “With the Olympics here, now is the best time to remind the world that China still has problems that need to be solved,” he said.

His handwritten poster listed a series of grievances against Xingyi and Wanggang officials. He accused them of stealing money meant to compensate farmers after their land was confiscated and described how he was jailed and beaten for publicizing his allegations. Last year, he wrote, his wife swallowed a fatal dose of pesticides at the Wanggang government building in the futile hope she might shame officials into releasing the money owed to Mr. Gao and his neighbors. Mr. Gao said she had been suffering from breast cancer and the couple could no longer afford treatment.

The police arrested Mr. Gao, saying he had given her the poison. A court released him, but the police warned him against continuing his campaign. Mr. Gao said the police told him that if he caused trouble again, he could be killed.

He was not deterred. When he arrived in Beijing, he slept in a different hotel or bathhouse each night. By checking in around midnight and leaving at dawn, he said he hoped to evade security officials who often trace people through their registration information. He made sure to leave his cellphone at home and called his son only from public phones.

In a telephone interview, Mr. Gao’s son said he was worried about his father, but he also expressed resignation.

“I used to try to stop him but now I don’t bother,” said the son. “He has been through so much but he keeps on chasing his dream of justice.” He sighed, then added, “I fully support him.”

Anonymous:

The Beijing Olympic Games have created a wave of volunteerism involving more than 1 million people, including those not registered as official volunteers. The trend, which has been featured in a number of local magazines, is said to include some people who are concerned about public safety and others who just think their volunteer experience will give them an advantage in finding a job.

On Sunday, Du Dechuan, a 21-year-old student at Beijing University, was working as a volunteer for the team table tennis matches held at the university's campus.

Directing tourists at an information counter, he said, "I wanted to be of service, as this is an important event for China."

Meanwhile, near the main National Stadium, known as the Bird's Nest, 23-year-old graduate student Guo Wei was working as a volunteer Japanese-language interpreter. "I want to help China to become better known in the world," she said.

Guo said she was emotionally moved when she heard about people her own age who had worked as volunteers in Sichuan Province after a major earthquake struck the region in May. The young volunteers rescued people and provided psychological support to the families of quake victims.

"I understood it was important for us to help each other," Guo said. "I wanted to do something to help people."

More than 1.12 million people applied to work as volunteer interpreters or to direct tourists at Olympic venues. Of 75,000 people from 98 nations and regions who have been listed as official volunteers for the events, 98 percent are from the Chinese mainland. Among the remainder, 11 volunteers are Japanese.

Aside from the event volunteers, about 400,000 people are working at 550 service centers outside the event venues.

Meanwhile, more than 1 million people are said to be involved in related volunteer activities, but are not registered as official volunteers with the Beijing Olympic organizing committee.

That figure includes those working for public safety in the Chinese capital. Their mission is not assisting tourists, but preventing crimes and monitoring political activities on behalf of the regular public safety authorities.

On the walkways near Tiananmen Square, volunteers of this kind wearing red caps and polo shirts can be found every few dozen meters. The Chinese characters on their shirts read, "Volunteers for public safety in the capital."

Of them, Chen Shuqin, 67, stands in the exhaust fumes and extreme summer heat from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., directing tourists. Wiping sweat from her suntanned face, Chen said: "Making the Olympics successful is the ardent wish of the Chinese people. I'm happy to be of any help."

Volunteers such as Chen are directed by members from each local residents committee in Beijing. A card that directors of the local committees wear around their necks shows six rules.

One rule, for example, requires that they report to authorities whenever they notice a suspicious person, with suspicious gatherings covered by another rule.

One of the volunteers said, "I'll call police quickly whenever I find people who would promote political issues, including Tibetan independence."

They do not distinguish between directing tourists and serving as watchdogs--all that matters is that they volunteer.

===

Advantageous for getting a job


Quite a few university students have participated in the Olympics as volunteers, believing that it's advantageous for getting a job in Beijing, where the employment situation is bleak.

A 23-year-old female student working as a volunteer at an Olympic site said, "I'm sure I will be asked whether or not I have experience as an Olympic volunteer at a job interview next year."

In China, private grassroots organizations have been unable to grow because the Chinese government strictly controls such groups, ever alert to the possibility that they could become involved in political movements.

The student volunteers at the Olympics seem to have been "called up" by the youth organization of the Communist Party rather than getting involved on a truly voluntary basis. Behind the Chinese government's open support for the Olympic movement, there seems to be a policy of encouraging national unity and promoting the image of China as a democratic country at home and abroad.

Reports that volunteers in the aftermath of the big earthquake in Sichuan Province were praised as heroes just before the Olympics seem to have helped trigger the volunteer boom.

A Chinese magazine carried an 11-page supplement titled "First Year of the Volunteer Era." The article described volunteer activities in the aftermaths of the 1995 Great Hanshin Earthquake and the disastrous U.S. hurricanes of 2005. The article also encouraged Chinese people to continue volunteer activities even after the Olympics.

However, there are strict restrictions on Olympic volunteers' words and actions. We asked many volunteers what they thought about the recent series of terrorist incidents in the Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. Almost all refused to answer, saying, "I can't say anything about it."

"We're prohibited to speak about anything related to politics," one volunteer confessed.

She explained that volunteers had been told to answer, "I don't know," if they were asked about political issues by members of the overseas media at a briefing session by the Beijing Olympic organizing committee in June.

The person in charge of the committee reportedly reminded them not to answer, saying, "We are afraid that your personal opinions will be reported overseas and cause misunderstandings."

"Our volunteer activities are different from free activities overseas," said the volunteer, with a resigned look.

===

Linguists appreciated


Meanwhile, the activities of multilingual Chinese volunteers are welcomed by foreign tourists in Beijing.

Kevin Dose, a 23-year-old German volunteer who studies in Beijing, said multi-lingual Chinese volunteers working at the Olympics often enthusiastically ask to assist people when they see someone in need of help. "[The volunteers] are all working with enthusiasm," he added.

Sayaka Omachi, a 23-year old Japanese volunteer, said she had not heard about or seen volunteer activities in China until June, when she graduated from a Beijing university. She was surprised to learn that a lot of people are working at the Olympics without pay.

A 39-year-old tourist from Brazil walking along Beijing's Wang Fu Jing Street--the city's busiest shopping and amusement area--said: "Because we can't understand Chinese, and most people in Beijing can't speak foreign languages, volunteers are a great help to us. A large number of people are taking part in volunteer activities and I think it's a very nice project."

Anonymous:

Four members of a Christian group from the United States are refusing to leave an airport in China after authorities confiscated their 300 Bibles, the group's director said Monday.

The four members of Vision Beyond Borders -- based in Sheridan, Wyoming -- arrived in the southwestern Chinese city of Kunming on Sunday. Customs officials discovered the Bibles during an X-ray scan of their luggage, said Pat Klein, director of the group, which supplies Bibles and other Christian material to people in China and other countries.

Under Chinese law, it is illegal to bring printed religious material into the country if it exceeds the amount for personal use. The group distributes the Bibles through a local shop owner in Kunming, according to Klein.

Klein said he's been bringing Bibles into China for 21 years and had no idea he was breaking Chinese law.

The group spent the night at the airport, and Chinese customs officials told them they had broken the law and repeatedly asked them to leave the airport, Klein said. He said the customs agents have not been antagonistic.

China says Christians are free to worship in China -- as long as they worship in a church that registers with the government.

People in China can buy Bibles, but some members of underground or unregistered churches in China say Bibles are in short supply in some locations, especially rural areas, according to a 2007 report from the U.S. State Department.

The Report on International Religious Freedom warned that the distribution of religious publications in China is closely watched. All publication in China is controlled by the government, whether religious or otherwise.

"Customs officials continued to monitor for the 'smuggling' of Bibles and other religious material into the country," the report said. "Religious texts published without authorization, including Bibles and Qurans, may be confiscated."

President Bush criticized China's record on human rights and religious freedom in a speech he made before going to China for the opening ceremony of the Summer Olympics.

"I have spoken clearly, candidly and consistently with China's leaders about our deep concerns over religious freedom and human rights," he said. "And I have met repeatedly with Chinese dissidents and religious believers. The United States believes the people of China deserve the fundamental liberty that is the natural right of all human beings."

Qin Gang, a spokesman for the Chinese Foreign Ministry, brushed aside Bush's criticism.

"We firmly oppose any statements or deeds which use human rights, religion and other issues to interfere with the internal affairs of other countries," he said.

He said China "keeps to the concept of putting people's interest first and is devoted to maintaining and promoting basic rights and freedom of its citizens.

"Chinese citizens enjoy freedom of religion in accordance with the law."

While in China, Bush worshipped at a church that operates with government permission. That drew criticism from Amnesty International and other advocates of religious freedom, who said that Bush was endorsing the Chinese government's regulation of churches.

Klein, meanwhile, said his group members won't leave until their Bibles are returned.

"We're being inconvenienced a little, but it's nothing compared to what our brothers and sisters in China experience for their faith in Jesus Christ," Klein said.

They are scheduled to travel to Bangkok, Thailand, on Wednesday.

China is a biggest Bible publisher and producer country..

Anonymous:

Terrorists are those who raise violent protests, throw stones, setting bombs... whatever they do for their belief that they cause harm to the public.

Early Christians also protested, but in a peaceful fashion, Martin Luther arranged peaceful authorized protests, but whoever they are, use stones and bombs to harm other people and public, then they are terrorists and criminals.

If Christians throw stones, then they are no more Christians, same as any monk, or Muslim; they are all criminals that should be throw to jail, and after they die, they may not even receive rights to enter heaven. So I don't feel bad US soldiers doing their good the works in Afgan, and surely I hope Chinese government punish those who killing others.

Again no one is forcing them to speak Mandarin or believe American dream, but they don't have right to claim other's life for their own belief, whether land or culture.

If my son believes he must hurt other people to strive for his freedom and rights, then he is no freedom fighter, he is terrorist, and I lock him up myself; he is grounded for trouble-making.

Anonymous:

To Anonousmus August 18, 2008 4:00 PM

Whats wrong with you? Does your but hurts that much? are you feeling uncomfortable, my chinese bastard?

Anonymous:

To August 18, 2008 4:00 PM IDIOT:

i know you are an envious ar_sehole already.. therefore just kill yourself and dont waste the air.

Anonymous:

To Anonymous of August 18, 2008 1:45 PM,

I enjoyed your fiction writing greatly, too bad you can't money on it.

You should have a good career in movie industries.

Cheer for you!

Anonymous:

With Beijing 2008 finally at hand, China’s Tibetan occupation remains Hollywood’s cause célèbre. And why wouldn’t it be? Which other oppressed minority has the Beastie Boys, Michael Stipe, and Richard Gere as spokespeople, and a spiritual leader who’s played Lollapalooza?

But all this focus on Tibet sells Beijing short in the Nasty Oppression Global Standings. Under Paramount Leader Hu Jintao’s big, secure tent, there’s room for all of China’s recognized minorities, dissidents, journalists, unapproved religions, and trade unionists to have their land and resources encroached upon and their spirits, souls, and possessions (as well as fingers) crushed! Wielding the catch-all charges of splittism, organizing and leading a counterrevolutionary group, and illegally providing state secrets (a handy one for those nosy journalists), Dai Lo (that’s “Big Brother” in Cantonese) has effectively sidelined all critics of the party. (If the various crimes and statutes are too confusing, just remember the maxim that guides lawful Chinese citizens: Hu’s Your Daddy.)
Though Beijing’s enemies — at least those who haven’t been bred out of existence through intermarriage with China’s Han majority — are way too numerous to list, consider the following four non-Tibetan religious, ethnic, and intellectual minorities a sort of Olympic qualifying heat. In order to advance Beijing’s “Harmonious Society” in preparation for the 2008 Games, members of these groups have been locked up, exiled, or have disappeared altogether. Enjoy the synchronized swimming!

Uighurs
The Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous Region (XUAR) contains China’s largest reserves of oil, natural gas, and coal. To meet mounting Chinese energy demand, Beijing’s building an 1100-mile pipeline to funnel natural gas from both the XUAR and its energy-rich Central Asian neighbors Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan.

The pipeline and attendant urbanization of Xinjiang are tied to the Western Development Strategy, a Chinese government plan to move millions of Han Chinese (who make up 92 percent of China’s estimated 1.3 billion people) to Xinjiang. The Han have claimed the bulk of the jobs extracting the area’s resources. Thus, much like their Tibetan neighbors, the native Turkic Muslim Uighur minority has been marginalized in their own homeland.

As it does with other minority areas, Beijing ostensibly treats Xinjiang as an autonomous region. Uighurs can worship in state-approved Mosques and become Chinese Communist Party (CCP) members. But when Uighurs second-guess Beijing, they are quickly reprimanded. Rebiya Kadeer, a former high-ranking party member who questioned the income disparity between Uighurs and Hans, was charged with sharing state secrets for mailing newspaper clips to her exiled husband in the United States. After serving six years, Kadeer was allowed — as a condition of Condoleezza Rice’s 2005 state visit to China — to join her husband in Washington, DC. After her release, however, Beijing locked up two of Kadeer’s sons on trumped-up charges. They are hardly alone. In 2004, Uighur journalist Nurmuhemmet Yasin received a 10-year prison sentence for inciting separatism. His transgression? Writing a short story about a caged bird that yearns for freedom.

According to a 2004 report by Human Rights Watch, Beijing’s Strike Hard campaigns, tasked with combating terror and dissent, have put down more than 12 rebellions in Xinjiang. While real numbers are hard to isolate, the death toll from 1997’s Ghulja Uprising, in the Xinjiang city the Han Chinese call Yining, is thought to be somewhere between hundreds and thousands. Post–September 11, despite evidence to the contrary, Beijing has managed to connect armed Uighur rebel groups to Al Qaeda, even though little evidence exists to support this conflation. One of those groups, the East Turkistan Independence Movement, has been blamed for this past Monday’s attack that killed 16 Chinese military police in Kashgar, an ancient city on the border of Xinjiang and Kyrgyzstan where China’s largest mosque exists uneasily with a 79-foot statue of Chairman Mao.

Mongolians
As it does with other minority groups throughout China, the CCP uses both so-called modernization efforts and environmental legislation in the Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region (IMAR) to colonize the natives. As part of the Ecological Migration Project (EMP), traditionally nomadic Mongolian herders are being relocated to cities and towns. The CCP claims it is in fact the Mongolians’ livestock grazing — not the rapid expansion of coal-fired power plants and full-scale Chinese industrial revolution — that is causing the massive expansion of the Gobi desert and the blinding sandstorms that now reach as far away as Japan. Because of the EMP, thousands of herders are losing their animals and homes. But don’t worry about the poor nomads — once they relocate, they are rewarded by the Chinese government’s fair-market value for their property and livestock, which is the equivalent of, er, $1100 US or, for those who decline the payment, a $550 US mud hut. In other words: jack s_h_it. Plus, many of the urbanized Mongols are unable to function in a Han-dominated society that relies on Mandarin fluency.

As in Xinjiang, the Chinese have also encouraged Han migration to the IMAR. Since China’s annexation of the region in 1947, the Han-to-Mongol ratio has jumped from 1:5 to 6:1. A recent European Parliament resolution also detailed more extreme measures of population control, such as “sterilization and abortion by the Chinese authorities.”

That same resolution castigated Beijing’s treatment of Mongol political prisoners, including the singly named Hada, who heads the Southern Mongolian Democratic Alliance. After protesting the mass killings, destruction of the Mongol Religious system, and migration of Han Chinese, he was arrested in 1995 at his bookstore and charged with separatism and espionage (for Mongolia, of course). Despite international outcry, he is serving the remainder of his 15-year sentence in an IMAR prison.

Anonymous:

五星红旗迎风飘扬,
胜利歌声多么响亮,
歌唱我们亲爱的祖国,
从此走向繁荣富强!
我们勤劳,我们勇敢,
挎过奔腾的黄河长江,
伟大的祖國中國指引着前进的方向,
英雄的人民站起来了,
我们团结友爱坚强如刚!

熱血赤子烝烝驕陽﹐
我們歌聲多么嘹亮﹐
讚美我们亲爱的祖国,
獨立自主扶民安邦!
我們機智﹐我們堅強﹐
搓破美帝的玩癖伎倆﹐
廣闊美麗的土地是我們親愛的家鄉﹐
偉大的中國站起来了﹐
從此世界得到和平安康。

Anonymous:

五星红旗迎风飘扬,
胜利歌声多么响亮,
歌唱我们亲爱的祖国,
从此走向繁荣富强!
我们勤劳,我们勇敢,
挎过奔腾的黄河长江,
伟大的祖國中國指引着前进的方向,
英雄的人民站起来了,
我们团结友爱坚强如刚!

Anonymous:

Do you think it is fair and proper that you (or any communist indoctrinated Han Chinese represent all minority (actually Tibetans, Uyghurs and Mongolians are not ‘minority in their homeland, Chinese supposed to be ‘minority’ there ) ethnic groups by your self and answer the question like if there is racial/ethnical issue in Tibet and Xinjiang/East Turkistan? Why do not you try to ask a Tibetan or Uyghurs? One very simple question for all Chinese, why you guys hate Japanese so much even after 60 years and most of you have never seen Japanese solder and its occupation?. Nowadays, for Tibetans and Uyghurs, Chinese are worst than Japanese, Communist Chinese is worst than Kuomintang( Nationalist Party) Chinese, Hujintao is worst than Maozedong or any other previous Chinese leader. We, Tibetans, Uyghurs and Mongolians suffered so much from China.

Think about your situation under Japanese control; please do not always claim and say that(of course no one can stop you) Tibet and East Turkistan were part of China many centuries ago, I admit that right now geographically Tibet and East Turkistan are part of china, because China has a strong army, you have gun and most importantly you were indoctrinated so deeply by your brutal, inhuman and terrorist communist regime.

However, never, ever forget that Uyghurs are not Chinese, they are Uyghurs; Tibetans are not Chinese, they are Tibetans and Mongolians are not Chinese, they are Mongolian. Just like Chinese were not Japanese, not French, not English and not Protégées because they were invaded and occupied by them.

Anonymous:

I wish everyone, especially the communist regime and its army and police forces could follow the law, the reality is they didn’t.
1. Uyghurs are not given Chinese passport. there are a lot of restrictions of applying a passport, few of Uyghurs who have good ties with communist leader would spend more than 10,000 Yuan for obtaining a Chinese passport in more than six months; while Chinese can get a passport within 10 days for 220 Yuan.
2. thousand of Uyghur elites are thrown to prison for no reason, then tortured, killed without any trial, then their kidneys and other organs were harvested and sold in market.
3. Students and anyone who earn salary from government are not allowed to practice their religion.
4. you can hardly find an Uyghur in government offices and in state owned companies.
5. Uyghurs are forced to not use their mother tongue in school and work.
6. Before 1960, there are less than 5% (this was a communist regime statics, actual figure is less than2%)Han Chinese in East Turkistan; now almost50% of the population is Chinese; on top of that, most Chinese occupied best part of the cities, best part of the agricultural land and water source.
7. Most Uyghur university graduates are jobless while government lure inland Chinese for better and stable employment opportunity in government and state owned companies in East Turkistan.
8. Thousands of East Turkistans were massacred just because they complained from government and this situation is continuing.
9. Numerous young Uyghur females are selectively(not male, not married, not ugly) forcibly sent to inland china for employment in factories, and then they were forced to marry inlanders and/or forced to become prostitute.

chinese are monsters:

A lot of books, especially history books published in China are fake, even a lot fakes in Beijing 2008 Oylmpic (是假的) !

So many "educated" chinese here in this discussion, but we can easly see how narrow minded are them and always say what they are thingking is the right thing, how redicilous ! It seems to me that real situation in China is more worse than the time of former Yuguslavia.

So great nation with 500000000 years history, what what what...... It is very easy to create history numbers adding zeros, but real world is not so easy as writing a zero !

The case of uyghur, kazakhs, tibets, mongols etc. have to decide by themself and not by chinese ! It is nature that no one will accept to live under repression and think about what was the feeling of chinese people during japanese occupation.

No one brutal regime like Manzhu, Chinggiz Han, Stalin, Hitler will long exist in this world ! You must learn to realize that there are many many people who are different thinking and speaking, different living & working and so on ...than chinese ! Repression will never have positive result.

Anonymous:

Travellers in today's China are often surprised to discover that the country has a sizeable Muslim population.

According to the Chinese government, there are more than 20 million Muslims who live in all parts of the country.

Others say the number may even be higher.

Many Chinese towns have mosques.The call to prayer can be heard on Fridays from Beijing to Yunnan in the south, and especially in the oases of arid Xinjiang in the far northwest.

But there are subtle differences among the communities that follow Islam in China — cultural, linguistic and nationalist nuances that formed over centuries of an often-troubled history.

Muslims have lived in the Middle Kingdom from just after the death of the Prophet Muhammed in 632 AD.

They came as traders and missionaries from Arab states, and later from Islamic Persia and Ottoman Turkey.

1st mosque built 1,400 years ago
Tang and Song Dynasty emperors, with an eye on the riches of the Muslim world, made them welcome and even built China's first mosque in what is today the city of Guangzhou.

Over the years, traders and travellers married into Han Chinese families, and settled and assimilated while keeping their Muslim faith.

Descendants of this group are contemporary China's largest Muslim group, known as Hui.

Centuries of co-existence have made many Hui people distinguishable from Han Chinese only by the practice of their faith. When decades of mandatory atheism under Mao Zedong ended in the late 1970s, many devout Hui flourished, reopening mosques and signing up for government-approved trips to Mecca.

The same wasn't true of the country's other large Muslim group, the Uighur people of Xinjiang.

Ethnically, Uighurs are Central Asian, speakers of a language related to Turkish.

They look west to the Middle East, Turkey and Tashkent, not east to Beijing.

Like the Tibetans on their southern border, they remember when they inhabited a sovereign land and even conquered parts of past Chinese empires in battles centuries ago.

On the northern branch of the historic Silk Route between Mongol China and Rome, the Uighurs traded and travelled widely and forged a distinctive local approach to Islam.

Xinjiang named China's 'new frontier'
But the Chinese have long regarded the region as an integral part of their vast country.

In the 19th century, Chinese regimes cemented their authority over the Uighurs and named their ancestral lands Xinjiang, or "new frontier" in Mandarin.

Briefly, in the political chaos that engulfed China in the 1930s and early 1940s, the Uighurs declared independence under the name East Turkestan, but the victory of Mao's communists in 1949 brought them firmly back under Chinese rule.

Zealously atheist Maoists stamped out religious worship of all sorts, although Xinjiang's remoteness and cultural disconnect with Han-dominated China meant Islam survived more openly than elsewhere in the country.

But Uighur discontent with rule from Beijing intensified as the discovery of oil and mineral wealth brought migrants from all over China. The Chinese government encouraged migration with official campaigns with names like "Go West."

A surge in Han Chinese migrants
Today, there are almost as many Han Chinese as Uighur in Xinjiang.

In the 1990s, foreign media began reporting on Uighur grievances and human rights groups highlighted their cultural and religious concerns.

Lacking a charismatic leader like Tibet's Dalai Lama, the Muslims of Xinjiang found little interest in their plight in the west.

China opposed Uighur activism as vigourously as its Tibetan version, restricting Islamic teachings and cracking down hard on community leaders and others who advocated sovereignty or civil rights.

Jailed Canadian Huseyin Celil knows this only too well. He is jailed in an unknown location in China while Beijing refuses Canada's demands for consular access, calling him a wanted international terrorist whose dual citizenship is not legal. A Uighur, Celil was born in China, though he holds Canadian citizenship.

The Sept. 11 attacks gave China an opportunity to press its case that Uighur Muslim and independence leaders were affiliated to international Islamist militancy.

The authorities stamped down hard on demonstrations and civil disobedience campaigns and gave frequent news conferences, saying they had stymied plans for terror campaigns.

Experts doubt al-Qaeda links
Little evidence for this was ever presented, although China will certainly point to attacks during the Beijing Olympics as proof that Islamist Uighurs have violent aims in their independence campaign.

Most international experts on jihadist groups say whatever links exist between Uighur militants and the likes of al-Qaeda are relatively recent in origin, as much a product of the crackdown on them as anything else.

The fact is that Xinjiang is regarded by Beijing as one of China's most sensitive regions, and a place with huge economic potential.

It borders on some of the country's most important allies and has huge reserves of oil and gas.

While China may pay lip service to cultural and religious freedom, in practice it constrains those rights in the name of social harmony and increasingly, a surging economy. The state appoints religious prayer leaders and restricts the contents of their sermond to topics approved by the authorities.

For now, Uighur dreams of independence and Islam sit uneasily alongside the ambitions of a emerging superpower.


rico chipotle:

Anonymous, As i stated, i'm not here to defend U.S. activities in Iraq or Afganistan. My question refers more to Palestinians who fight for their homeland, the possibility of popular revolt in "champagne and diamonds" Myanmar, Khurds wishing to be recognized as a "nation" based on shared language, culture, tradition, and asperations as is the case in Tibet and East Turkestan. Reagan called the Contras "freedom fighters" while Israel calls the Palestinians "terrorists". Are there not precendents in which the world community came to recognize "terrorists" as "freedom fighters" and vice-versa?
While Mongol Khanate and Manchu Dynasty were obviously hostile foreign invaders, present day "Bling Dynasty" seems to think Mongol and Manchu conquests, which included China, confir chinese "ownership" of Tibet and East Turkestan. This sounds so much like Israel's biblical claims that yahweh (or amen-ra, depending on your source) promised Palestine to them.
While arms-sales are rife, the case of Darfur and Sudan is particularly pernicious in that while UN attempts to impose arms sanctions against Khartoum and initiate UN intervention, Beijing consistently blocks these moves, as it also did with Mugabe.
That's why i respond to Mr. Pomfret with a big "NO".

Anonymous:

---if they want to practice their religion, fine, they have their freedom to read their book, kneel the stones, marry 72 virgins in China,---

FOR ABSOLUTLY IDIOTS LIKE YOU; UGHURS DO NOT BELIVE INTO 72 VIRGINS. UGHURS LIVE NOT IN CHINA THEY LIVE IN OWN LAND SO DO TIBETANS AND MONGOLS. YOU DUMB CHINESE HAE NO RIGHT TO TELL THEM WHAT TO DO INSIDE OF OWN HOUSE.

Anonymous:

Beijing's China Ethnic Culture Park features what it calls "precise re-creations" of life for all China's 56 ethnic groups, but one thing seems in short supply: actual ethnic minorities.

"There are no Uighurs here," said a Han Chinese security guard in the forlorn-looking section devoted to that restive Muslim ethnicity from western China's Xinjiang region.

"There haven't been any for several years," he said.

A young Tibetan women said all those in her section were from Qinghai province -- not Tibet, which exploded in anti-Chinese rioting in March.

The attraction changed its English name from the unfortunate translation "Racist Park" in recent years. Yet it appears to remain a monument to the ruling Communist Party's longtime message of Han Chinese superiority, rather than national diversity.

That paternalistic role was highlighted this week with the revelation that children representing Tibetans, Uighurs and other ethnic groups in a key part of the Olympics opening ceremony were actually members of the dominant Han ethnic group, which makes up more than 90 percent of China's population.

Games organisers had claimed the 56 children who carried out the national flag in the ceremony in a moment meant to showcase national unity were from each official ethnic group in China.

But they were actually all Han, Yuan Zhifeng, deputy director of the Galaxy Children's Art Troupe to which the children belonged, told the Asian Wall Street Journal.

The apparent fakery came after ethnic tensions in China made headlines this year with long-simmering resentment against Han Chinese rule in Tibet and Uighur-populated Xinjiang erupting into violence.

To world audiences, the opening ceremony incident may have appeared insensitive to minorities, akin to having white Australians represent aborigines, but in China it is routine, said China minorities expert Dru Gladney.

"I would not be surprised if some ethnic minorities in China were offended by this but they are also accustomed to it," said Gladney, a professor at Pomona College in the United States.

"In the West, we are obsessed with authenticity in such matters but it's different in China. I'd guess many Chinese would not have a problem with it."

Beijing Olympics organising committee vice president Wang Wei reflected such sentiments when asked about the ceremony's "ethnic" children.

"I see nothing wrong exactly with (where) the children are from... it is a tradition in China in terms of giving a performance," Wang said.

Gladney said it was Communist Party policy to promote the image of a harmonious and colourful collection of minorities following the lead of the "more developed" Han.

Han Chinese, meanwhile, are regularly seen on television dressed as other minorities.

During the annual sessions of parliament, the roughly 3,000 dark-suited delegates to the rubber-stamp body are sprinkled with minority delegates who, according to party protocol, show up in full traditional regalia.

However, only 16 of the 204 members of the Communist Party's Central Committee are minorities, with the rest being Han, according to government data.

At the ethnic culture park, three women lounged in the heat of the Mongolia section in traditional Mongolian gowns.

Speaking perfect Mandarin, they insisted they were Mongolian, but when asked to say common phrases such as "Welcome to the Beijing Olympics" in the Mongol language, they could not.

"Some things are harder to translate into our language," said one.

Gladney said China has done much to improve the lives and basic services of minorities across the country and vast numbers of them back the "national unity" message. But others worry.

"I think the fear for many is: does harmony and unity ultimately mean assimilation and surrendering their own identity and autonomy?" Gladney said.


Note:
Qinghai province IS the Central Tibet.

Anonymous:

To rico chipotle,

---At what point does a "terrorist" become a "freedom fighter"?---

While then what American soldiers are doing in Afgan?

Those attack your people and nation are terrorists, so those killing people in other countries are freedom fighters?

This is how you American write history?

F you!

rico chipotle:

Anonymous..LOLLL..Just what i thought; even your english abilities flag as you rage. I wish no offense and at present don't require any t.p. but thanks for your suggestion. And of curse, i appreciate that someone in the U.S. senate is doing something other than prosecuting the war in iraq.
I happen to be reading T.E.Lawrence's "7 Pillars of Wisdom" and found your discussion on the uighur situation evocative. At what point does a "terrorist" become a "freedom fighter"?

Citizen of the post-American world:

Anonymous writes: "Mr. Keidel... This is one opinion, one prediction, nothing more."

:) To be fair to the author, what he presents are the conclusions of a well argued, well documented and very original study, light-years ahead of the innumerable, vulgar economists' unsupported predictions which, more often than not, amount to no more than wishful thinking on their part. In his study, the author debunks many clichés generally put forward by ignorant people, including on this blog.

The simple fact that what the author says strikes you as "a wake up call to the US" is the best indication that Mr. Keidel deserves a better ride for his money than your non-argument gives him.

There is more to be found in this world than mere opinions. Reality is more than perception. It certainly has little to do with crude propaganda disseminated, however loudly, by broken records and other devices used, quite liberally, to manufacture consent.

Anonymous:

To rico chipotle,

you can use 574 to wipe your A_S_S.

Don't expect your American law to rule Chinese.

As I said,

Anyone is not allowed to use their religion and ethnic practices to hurt others or to break the China laws to harm the public.

If such individual's belief and practice harm the public peace and country's unity, then that means that individual is willing to give up his human tights, and he shall be locked up and punished as terrorists.

I don't care he is Uighurs, Tibetan, or Dalia Lama or Dalai Tama.

if they want to practice their religion, fine, they have their freedom to read their book, kneel the stones, marry 72 virgins in China,

But if they throw stones, set bomb, and raise unauthorized violent protest, that means they are not monks, nor practice any religion, they are sowing harms to the public, and they will be punished as criminals.

That's it.

rico chipotle:

Anonymous, Thanks for your succinct summary of uighur question. I mentioned u.s. senate resolution 574 in my first posting but Chination and others zeroed in on the semantics of "invasion" in reference to Tibet. So Beijing has a double-edged problem: world consternation because of its contempt for human rights and an internal menace. I admire Dalai Lama's diplomatic acumen but in my opinion the real question arises from the violation of sovereign borders and the desires of a people whose tradition, language, culture, and asperations be recognized as "nation" as expressed in the various international accords on human rights. While the issue of Uighurs as Muslims won't displace "the sopranos" in the average u.s. household, those who make the effort to educate themselves will respond to Uighurs as a people, not as an ethnic or religious enclave.

Anonymous:

Mr. Keidel, Senior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, makes the following points:

1. "China's domestically driven economic expansion is not limited by export markets and can sustain high single-digit growth rates for decades,

2. Beijing now seems likely to overcome potential stumbling blocks such as economic instability, pollution, inequality, corruption, and a slow pace of political reform,

3. China's economic size will match America's by 2035 and double it by midcentury, with unclear but potentially wrenching strategic implications that demand U.S. economic and military reassessment,

4. American policy makers should take this opportunity to enact wide-ranging domestic reforms and rethink their inherited concepts of global order."

This is one opinion, one prediction, nothing more. I could site many predictions that oppose this one. In the 50's people predicted the USSR would rule the world, in the 70's Japan would become the richest nation, In the 70's the UN predicted the world population would stop at 5 billion, what happened? The prediction you sited, to attempt to prove your point is actually more of a wake up call to the US vs praise for China. Most economists are predicting significant declines in China's growth over the next three years already and predictions change often.

Anonymous:

China has problem,but it is not what you said cultural genocide or ethnic discrimination.


While Tibet has played the role of China's "rock star" to human-rights activists around the world, China's Xinjiang province has been treated more like an unwanted stepchild. One reason is that Tibet has a true rock star in the exiled Dalai Lama. Another reason is that the strife in Xinjiang involves Muslim ethnic minorities with alleged ties to the most hated man in the Western world - Osama bin Laden. All of this, however, is simply unfair because what is happening in Xinjiang in terms of human-rights violations may be even worse than the Tibetan repression.

Xinjiang is China's largest province geographically but, with its extremes of heat and cold and desert climate, it is also one of its most sparsely populated. This province was formally annexed to the Manchu Qing Empire as early as 1759 but, for all practical
purposes, it remained under the control of provincial warlords until the ascendancy of the Communist Party in 1949. That was when one of the most interesting, and possibly most ruthless historical events was ever perpetrated - one that allowed China to bring Xinjiang under its iron-fist control.

During the immediate post-World War II period, Xinjiang was controlled by Stalin and the Soviet-backed East Turkistan Republic. Reluctant to support a nationalist Muslim regime on the border of the then-Soviet Central Asian republics, Stalin brokered what appeared to be a peaceful accommodation between the Muslim leaders of East Turkistan and Mao Zedong's government. However, the plane carrying the East Turkistan leadership to Beijing to negotiate the peace agreement mysteriously - and all too conveniently - crashed and killed all aboard. In the ensuing leadership vacuum, Mao's forces stepped in and assumed control of Xinjiang, an "autonomous province" in name only.

From an agricultural point of view, much of Xinjiang is a virtual dustbowl in no small part because of overgrazing, deforestation, overplowing, and the failed efforts of the central government to turn grasslands into farmland. However, beneath Xinjiang's dusty soil and mountainous steppes lies buried 40% of China's coal reserves. Equally abundant and far more precious to the central government are oil and natural gas deposits that total the equivalent of about 30 billion tons of oil and represent one-fourth to one-third of China's total petroleum reserves.

Xinjiang is not just one of China's best bets for energy resources. Bordering eight countries in Central Asia and the Russian Federation, Xinjiang also has important strategic value. Central Asia can serve as a transshipment area for Middle East oil should war ever break out over Taiwan or China's various claims for oil reserves in the South China Seas. Central Asia republics such as Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan also have large petroleum reserves of their own that can help lessen China's Middle East oil dependence. For these reasons, China is building a vast network of modern infrastructure that includes railways, roads, and pipelines linking Xinjiang eastward to China's petroleum-thirsty industrial heartland and west and north to Central Asia and Russia.

In Xinjiang, the majority of the population consists of a Muslim Turkic people called the Uyghurs. These Uyghurs face some of the harshest and most repressive measures in the world under the jackboots of Chinese communism - arguably even more oppressive than what the Tibetans face. Any independent religious activity can be equated to a "breach of state security", activists are regularly arrested and tortured, and despite its sparse population, Xinjiang's ethnic groups suffer more executions for state security crimes than any other province.

Tragically, repression in Xinjiang has only intensified in the wake of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the United States. The Chinese government seized on this attack on American soil as a golden opportunity to cut a very clever deal with the US. China would support the US's "war on terror" if the United States would agree that the separatist activities of the Uyghurs represented not simply an indigenous rebellion against autocratic rule but rather a legitimate terrorist threat with ties to al-Qaeda and Osama Bin Laden. As part of its deal with America, China now defines a terrorist in Xinjiang as anyone who thinks "separatist thoughts", and Xinjiang's jails are crowded with such pseudo-terrorists.

Although China's iron-fisted repression in Xinjiang borders on the unbearable, what sticks most in the Uyghur craw is the ongoing "Hanification" of Xinjiang. As a matter of policy, for decades the Chinese government has sought to pacify Xinjiang by importing large portions of its Han population from other, primarily poor areas - and even by exporting young Uyghur women of child-bearing age out of the region.

Consider this chilling passage from Reuters:
China's government is forcibly moving young women of the ethnic Uyghur minority from their homes in Xinjiang to factories in eastern China, a Uyghur activist told the US Congress on Wednesday. Rebiya Kadeer, jailed for more than five years for championing the rights of the Muslim Uyghurs before being sent into exile in the United States, called for US help in stopping a program she said had already removed more than 240,000 people, mostly women, from Xinjiang. The women face harsh treatment with 12-hour work days and often see wages withheld for months ... Many suspect that the Chinese government policy is to get them to marry majority Han Chinese in China's cities while resettling Han in traditional Uyghur lands ...
Today, as a result of these policies, the Han population is rising at a rate twice as fast as that of the Uyghur population. Rather than being pacified or tamed by the growing Han population, the Uyghurs are simply becoming more and more radicalized. There is a very bitter and dangerous irony in this ethnic strife reported in the Economist:
Whereas the Uyghurs historically have been "among the world's most liberal and pro-Western Muslims, fundamentalist Islam is gaining sway among young Uyghur men. Today, Uyghurs report that small-scale clashes break out nearly every day between Chinese and Uyghurs in Xinjiang's western cities.
It is unlikely that a full-blown guerrilla movement will emerge in Xinjiang to engage Chinese forces in an Algerian- or Vietnamese-style revolt. The populace is simply too small, and Chinese security forces are too big and powerful. However, in an age of "suitcase" nuclear bombs and biological terrorist weapons, China is increasingly exposed to attacks from Uyghur separatists at soft target points such as the Three Gorges Dam or any one of its teeming cities. Indeed, as we have seen in a series of recent attacks, Uyghur separatists are showing an increasing ability to strike at Chinese targets.

The question ultimately for this conflict - and the fate of the Uyghur people - is how this conflict will be judged by world opinion. Will the Uyghurs be seen as a ruthlessly oppressed people being gradually exterminated through the policy of Hanification? Or will the taint of a Bin Laden connection prevent the same kind of world outrage that we now witness over Tibet? It is an open question - and one that the Chinese government itself could deftly sidestep if it simply began to treat its autonomous regions as truly autonomous.

Anonymous:

The three Uighur airline pilots in the Chinese aviation fleet have been ordered from their cockpits by authorities anxious to maintain security during the Olympic Games.

Their removal, along with the switching of Uighur cabin staff to flights outside the troubled Xinjiang province, follows a renewal of violence by Uighur separatists.

Turkic-speaking Uighurs in Xinjiang province who are eager to found a separate state of East Turkistan have launched a series of attacks apparently timed to coincide with the Beijing Games.

On August 4, 16 police were killed in the ancient Silk Road town of Kashgar when two Uighurs drove a truck into their group before attacking them with home-made bombs and knives. Just six days later a group of about 15 Uighurs attacked several government buildings in Kuqa, on the edge of the Taklamakan desert.

Police returned fire, killing eight of the attackers, while two committed suicide. A security guard and a civilian were killed by the attackers. Then last week a group of people armed with knives fatally stabbed three guards at one of the many road checkpoints that have been set up in Xinjiang to maintain security.

The order to ground the three male pilots came after an incident in March when a 19-year-old Uighur woman from Kuqa was able to slip through the less rigorous security checks for business-class travellers at the airport in Urumqi, the capital. She was then seen acting strangely aboard the flight, state media said.

The woman was found locked in an aircraft toilet with several cans filled with petrol. The plane, en route to Beijing, made an emergency landing in the northwestern city of Lanzhou. Officials described the incident as an attempted terrorist attack.

A Chinese source with aviation contacts said yesterday: “There are only three pilots in the Chinese aviation fleet who are Uighurs.

“They were all told that they would not be allowed to fly, at least until after the Olympics.”

Cabin staff who belong to the Uighur ethnic minority have also been removed from working on flights operating around Xinjiang, the source said. However, they are allowed to work on airliners serving other destinations around China.

Recent travellers to Xinjiang said they noticed only flight attendants of the ethnic Han minority working on flights in the region, but the report could not be officially confirmed. China, which once recruited its airline pilots from the air force, is now facing a shortage as it keeps pace with a rapidly growing economy and an expanding fleet of aircraft.

Latest figures from the General Administration of Civil Aviation, in 2006, showed China has 11,000 pilots and first officers working in 800 airliners.

By 2010 China's fleet will grow to 1,250, requiring at least 6,500 more cockpit crew.

rico chipotle:

As for learning from native americans, i should mention i'm partly descended from one of the world's 3 oldest democracies still functioning and the only one of the three to recognize gender equality since its inception, @ 150 years before mongols invaded china, reducing its population by half. (I mention this because many who support beijing's invasion of tibet also try to claim mongol khanate as "chinese" in an effort to show that tibet was long a part of china. It's sheer nonsense.) I'm referring to the iroquois confederacy and perhaps it's this blood in my veins that makes my skin prickle when i read that china "peacefully liberated" tibet and that the copious documented evidence presently being examined by spain's judicial enquiry into the possibly genocidal roles of Li Peng, Jian Zenim and Hu JIntao is "fabricated by the western media". If only that were true.

rico chipotle:

Neither beijing nor washington deserve a "break" and again, washington's criminal activities don't excuse nor justify beijing's abuses. So some prefer to call 1950 sino invasion a "peaceful liberation", claiming "internal affair". Sorry, estimates range from 600K to 1.2 million "peacefully liberated" from this mortal coil; that's between 10-20% of the total tibetan population. This is based on the erroneous assumption that manchu, who invaded, set up manchu as official court language, proscribed inter-marriage and forced chinese males to wear hair queue as a sign of submission, were "chinese", which is nonsense.
Without export earnings, china's domestic market is worthless. So while i encourage people to pressure washington on iraq and afganistan and the dumbing down of u.s. civil rights by a series of "presidential directives", i also choose not to buy chinese products, preferring to buy locally and mostly "freetrade". We don't need to send armies; a nice friendly, non-violent boycott would do the trick. In short, "NO" break for beijing nor for washington.

Wills:

rico chipotle:

I do not defend Washington nor its policies; i defend International Rule of Law. This blog is about whether we should give slack to the Chinese and my answer is "NO", the same "NO" i give on any blog dealing with U.S. criminal activities. To assert that China's minorities are well-treated flies in the face of all filmed documented evidence, not to mention the periodic riots and revolts that have wracked Tibet since the 1950 Sino invasion.
After the march riots, Beijing refused access to Tibet to UN high commisioner for human rights, Me. Louise Arbour. on retiring, she commented that while Beijing had initially assured her unfettered access to all regions of PRC, in the wake of the march riots, permission to enter Tibet was denied. Why? she mentioned that the only other countries to do so were "champagne and diamonds" Myanmar and North Korea.
===========================

Periodic riots and revolts did not just come out in minority community. China has problem,but it is not what you said cultural genocide or ethnic discrimination.

As for the complexity of history,you should learn from natives trying to take the palace in Hawaii but being arrest by U.S polices.

After lying on Chinese,BBC and CNN got what their due in China.They are not trustworthy for Chinese any more. So do the No-boundary report organization.See the farce they are creating everyday about bashing Beijing Olympics.

As for human right groups,take a look at their passion of collecting evidence of Russian violation of human right while they gave a total slack to the Georgian president's military attack on S.Ossetian civilians.

If you could legitimately explain those have been done and are going,we Chinese would believe you are the right person to listen to.Otherwise, no Chinese,not to mention the Chinese government,will echo to what you claimed.

Give China a break? Who cares? This world is not just made of U.S,Britain,and those few European puppets.Your words carry no weight after you lost your moral grounds to this world by invading others,mistreating others,and at the same time continuing this empty moral instructions.

At this point,I think people wanting to save "face" still curable.But those wrongdoers who brazenly refuse "face" problem are really incurable.

jiaming:

The US media has definitely screwed up big time when it comes to China, just like it did on Iraq in the 1990s. Now that Russia is reasserting her power, our "patriotic" media suddenly found itself trashing two of the greatest powers in the world at the same time. The damage is not so much that the Chinese do not love America anymore after two years of daily China bashing. The real damage is that the Chinese will not trust America again. It will be extraordinarily difficult, if even at all possible, to get China to stand with the US like she did after Nixon opened the door to that country. Coincidentally, it was China's decision to participate in the 1984 LA Olympics that broke the Soviet boycott. Now the media like Washington Post is trying to butter up to China again. I seriously doubt it will work.

Chinationreport:

Peter,
Okay, Saudi is great, you are a guy, of course you would not care that women there live in middle age and darkness (let's change Human Rights to Men's Rights, Saudi would be a great fit!)

How about this? Please read:

Excerpt from: 'worldpolicy.org'
http://www.worldpolicy.org/projects/arms/reports/congo.htm#congo

Despite continued reports of widespread corruption and human rights abuses in Zaire, the U.S. helped build Mobutu’s arsenal with a fleet of C-130 transport aircraft and a steady supply of rifles, ammunition, trucks, jeeps, patrol boats, and communications equipment. By the time the dictator was ousted in 1997, the U.S. had delivered more than $300 million (measured in constant 1998 dollars) in military hardware to Mobutu’s regime. Through the International Military Education and Training (IMET) program, the U.S. also trained 1,350 of Mobutu’s soldiers at a cost of more than $100 million.[8] Although Zairian forces gained a reputation for violence and repression against civilians, the State Department continued to claim IMET training served to "safeguard Zaire’s internal stability and territorial integrity without threatening the security of neighboring countries."[9]

U.S. policy toward Mobutu was rationalized on the grounds of fighting "communism" and Soviet influence in Africa, but the U.S. was clearly more concerned with securing its own interests in the region than helping foster a stable, secure, and peaceful future for the people of Central Africa. Lying at the center of the continent, Zaire could provide the U.S. with access to important resources, transportation routes, and political favors. Over the years, U.S. rhetoric changed slightly, placing greater emphasis on democratic reform of the regime and increased attention to human rights, but in reality policy continued to focus on promoting narrowly defined U.S. economic and strategic interests.

"The U.S. has an interest in having a stable and responsible government in Kinshasa," the 1986 State Department Congressional Presentation reads, "which influences the stability, as well as the foreign and domestic policies, of its nine bordering states."[10] How Mobutu’s human rights abuses, political oppression, siphoning of government money, and use of a lawless military elite to subdue the people could have been justified as part of a "stable and responsible" government remains a disturbing question.

Moreover, even after the Cold War ended, the U.S. continued to provide military support to the Mobutu dictatorship. In 1991, the U.S. delivered more than $4.5 million in military hardware to Mobutu’s government.[11] That same year, Congress suspended its economic assistance to Congo – not on human rights grounds, but because it had defaulted on loans provided by the U.S. government to cover its weapons purchases.[12] By that time, a hearty arsenal of deadly weaponry had already poured into the country, while Mobutu’s fiscal corruption and brutal rule had incited political unrest and devastated the economy. According to the World Bank, 64.7% of the country’s budget was reserved for Mobutu’s discretionary spending in 1992; official Zaire figures put the estimate at 95%.[13]

Either the U.S. policy for promoting peace and democracy through a steady supply of military hardware and training to an undemocratic regime had failed miserably, or stated rationales masked other agendas. In either case, after three decades of oppressive rule Zaire hung ripe for violent upheaval, and U.S. policy reform was badly needed.

In 1998, the US State Department licensed commercial weapons sales by U.S. manufacturers to sub-Saharan Africa worth up to $64 million, on top of the $12 million in government-to-government deliveries that year. Commercial sales to the region included 300 M16s, 236 pistols and revolvers, 3940 rifles, and 10.8 million cartridges of .22-.50 caliber ammunition. A number of the countries engaged in the Congo war were recipients of these stocks, including Zimbabwe, Uganda, and Namibia.[48] Congress also continues to provide only meager amounts of debt relief and development aid. Of the $370 million requested by the Clinton administration for various debt relief initiatives in FY2000, less than half – $123 million – was approved by Congress.

Don't cast stone when you are in a glass house!!


http://www.chinationreport.com/ for your daily balanced news and views about China

Anonymous:

To rico chipotle,

I am Chinese, and there was no Sino Invasion. That's your history book, the one misplaced American invasion of the inland Natives and West land Mexicans, my history book is that Tibet is part of China. However your may ask your government to send their best military to divide China, you are welcome.

Even if your USA, one day gives your west states back to Mexico, we Chinese would never let our land to be separated, even we have a future democracy government.

Those Chinese separatists should die happily like other separatist of any country, and I am very happy this is the thing to be that way.

If you are an outsider, seek to harm countries that you and your group of people are not welcomed in China, that is reason you stay in US, not in China.

And as a Chinese, nothing will be honorable to put those traitors in jail for life time, so this way the world is in peace, and country united.

Absolutely NO HUMAN RIGHTS FOR THEM!

And that is what we can do, and you can do nothing about it.

I suggest you Americans should do the same to those Chinese who want to split your union, and if you can lock them up, then you do a good job for your country and China and the world.

If my father separates China, I will lock him up myself, and I don't mind to torture him myself for his colleague's information, because I know to put my country in front of my family is the first thing, so this way there will never be a Ben Ladden again, people would never live in fear of death.

And again, do not mistake your ground where you are, because your God is tired of your 'righteous' speech, and the world are tired of your individual belief also.

My hero is Abraham Lincoln, if one day, I be Chinese President, I will do works that following my hero to unite my country, and you? people like you?

your will be like ants that begging and kissing my feet to ask forgiveness.

There is no freedom allowed to divide any country.

Take message you like it or not, and in the end, I decide to put you in the history book or not, but there are many good people to be on the page,

your belief and life, does not even worth for a drop of ink on the last page.

Citizen of the post-American world:

Ladies and gentlemen,

here is a rare opportunity to broaden one's outlook profitably, while moving away from crude anti-Chinese propaganda, infantile China bashing, and current paradigmatic thinking on rising China.

I suggest we all study very closely Albert Keidel's remarkable "China's Economic Rise -- Fact and Fiction" (July 2008) ***.

Mr. Keidel, Senior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, makes the following points:

1. "China's domestically driven economic expansion is not limited by export markets and can sustain high single-digit growth rates for decades,

2. Beijing now seems likely to overcome potential stumbling blocks such as economic instability, pollution, inequality, corruption, and a slow pace of political reform,

3. China's economic size will match America's by 2035 and double it by midcentury, with unclear but potentially wrenching strategic implications that demand U.S. economic and military reassessment,

4. American policy makers should take this opportunity to enact wide-ranging domestic reforms and rethink their inherited concepts of global order."

I understand that while seemingly supportive of the view that "Great Man demands it of himself" (a model for the rising world), Mr. Keidel is most likely not on the Chinese government's payroll.

***

http://www.carnegieendowment.org/files/pb61_keidel_final.pdf

rico chipotle:

I do not defend Washington nor its policies; i defend International Rule of Law. This blog is about whether we should give slack to the Chinese and my answer is "NO", the same "NO" i give on any blog dealing with U.S. criminal activities. To assert that China's minorities are well-treated flies in the face of all filmed documented evidence, not to mention the periodic riots and revolts that have wracked Tibet since the 1950 Sino invasion.
After the march riots, Beijing refused access to Tibet to UN high commisioner for human rights, Me. Louise Arbour. on retiring, she commented that while Beijing had initially assured her unfettered access to all regions of PRC, in the wake of the march riots, permission to enter Tibet was denied. Why? she mentioned that the only other countries to do so were "champagne and diamonds" Myanmar and North Korea.

Peter:

Chinanationreport showcases the fine art of distortion: Saudi Arabia equals Sudan? Really, is Saudi Arabia backing the massacre of a segment of its population? I hadn't heard about that.

Ill thought out, half-baked diversion is your stock and trade.

Wills:

I once saw a video clip on you tube, in which a nasty BBC correspondent tried to use well-designed questions to trap a beautiful Uighur girl studying in France so that this girl would give an answer that could be interpreted differently in a different light. But this girl realized this reporter's ill-attention and refused to answer his questions.BBC is just a joke of reviving a bloat English ego of their glory in the past. Likewise,CNN's purported slipup in reporting China also showed its ugly side to Chinese. In terms of this,Washingtonpost is better and gives the chance for Chinese to comment here.

Playing off Chinese ethic groups against Han Chinese does not work for most Chinese. The Chinese government has the credit to unite this country and create equal chance for minorities. You could argue with me,because I am a Chinese minority.Some western people talking about the mistreatment of Chinese government to Chinese minority are just so groundless and ridiculous.

I am not a Chinese government
's apologist,which I would accept gladly if you insist on slipping up on me. Ethnic tension makes bloodshed and this demonstrated thousands times in Chinese history.We went through too many revolution and this country had been damaged again and again. War,starvation,and separation afflicted this country and stopped the progress of this country's civilization. Now we learn that we have to wisely deal with western influence and message,as proven in this forum in which constructive arguments are also mixed with arrogant racialist comments and sheer insults.

We will listen and analyze and then act under the guidance of our judgment.We are not afraid of being bullied.But, we appreciate those words with nice intention for universal humanity.

chinationreport:

When America wiretaps suspects, you are protecting your country and fighting terrorism. When China does the same, it is human rights violation.
When your beef is recalled, you will say the company name, not the country's name and Lou Dobbs and FoxNews will not come out to say that your beef is killing innocent Americans. When something from a Chinese company produced something bad, it is the CHINESE that are killing your pets, your children your people.
When you buy oil from Saudi which is a total human rights disaster, esp. for women, which finalized the world's terrorists, it is your ally, it is for your people, it is legitimate. When China does the same with Sudan, it is causing genocide...

Do I need to say more?

http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice

rico chipotle:

Chinationreport, The simple answer is the death tolls, arbitrary arrests and censorship.
1. Anyone who climbed the statue of liberty would be arrested, charged, bailed, tried, and sentenced by peers.
2./3. All samonella/other health reports always specify the source, if known.
4. Let's say the lipsynching, 56 han "minorities" and the fact that the majority of performers were military is
"allegory"
5. U.S. Congress doesn't regulate the lives/drinking habits of LL or PH. However, CPC did issue "new" passports for 2 under-age gymnasts and exercised a "hands-on" approach to the opening ceremony not to mention security arrangements which saw 3 uighur commercial pilots temporarily grounded and uighur flight crews not allowed to work any xinjiang routes for the duration of the olympics.
When Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown addressed the Senate chamber in support of U.S. Senate Resolution 574, he made it clear that the target was the CPC and its allied elite, not the Chinese people.

Anonymous:

Chen Aibao was fast asleep when the first explosions shook the centre of Kuqa – a dusty commercial oasis in the arid plains of central Xinjiang.

Minutes later, he heard the sound of people running outside his own small stall, close to the city's hospital.

"I saw one of them - not clearly - but he was a young guy," he said. "He was shouting: 'Over here, over here.'"

The putative bomber was speaking in Uighur - a language of the region, also used by the ethnic separatist group that has re-emerged from the shadows to launch a string of brazen, and seemingly well-coordinated, attacks in China's north-western Xinjiang province during the Olympic Games.

Seconds later, a small home-made pipe bomb detonated, sending shrapnel flying through the ceiling of Mr Chen's shop.

"They are awful," he said, of the attackers. At least three more explosions damaged other Chinese-owned businesses along the same street, as well as the local police station.

'Be objective'

By the time we reached Kuqa, a day later, the streets were quiet and builders were starting to replace broken glass in shop fronts.

There were roadblocks on the edge of the city, and armoured vehicles patrolling the main roads.
The authorities said they were still hunting for three of the attackers, but 10 were already dead, and two more had been captured, including a 15-year-old girl who had been injured by her own bomb and was now in hospital.

As we moved around Kuqa, it was evident that the local authorities were struggling to decide quite how to deal with us.

Foreign journalists are normally not allowed into Xinjiang without official minders, but under the terms of our Olympic accreditation, we could travel independently.

"You must treat the facts objectively," warned a stern but charismatic senior regional official, Mu Tielifuhasimu.

He said he was watching the internet closely, to see how the foreign media covered the incident.

Unlike some of our colleagues in recent days, we were neither harassed nor detained by security officials. Instead, several officials hovered close to us as we followed the trail of destruction left by the bombers.

"I don't understand it," said a Chinese businessman named Chen Daobing, standing next to another damaged shop, and clearly addressing his comments to the lurking security officials rather than to me.

"I think they just want to cause panic. Most of the people on this street are Chinese, but we have good relations with the minorities."

'No questions, please'

Minorities. That is the key word. Decades ago, this vast region was almost entirely populated by Muslim Uighurs - who have much closer ties to Central Asia than to Beijing.
But today the Uighurs are a minority in their own land, seemingly pushed to the fringes of fast-growing cities like Kuqa by a surge of Chinese immigrants.

The regional boss, Mu Tielifuhasimu - himself a Uighur - was adamant that rising prosperity was benefiting everyone in Xinjiang.

The scale of infrastructural investment in the region - from motorways to wind farms - is certainly impressive. But it is very hard to judge the real mood here.

Do the separatists have any real support? Do the attacks mark a final, desperate bid for Olympic publicity by a crumbling rebellion, or the start of a bold new movement? What turns a 15-year-old girl into a bomber?

Most Uighurs we approached turned away abruptly as soon as they saw us or our camera. Others claimed not to understand our questions
Even when we felt we had managed to shake off our minders, the heavy hand of Chinese rule seemed to smother the entire city.

Finally, in the market where the last bombers had been cornered and killed, I spoke briefly to an unidentified Uighur man who then turned and walked away fast into the dark alleys.

"I'm afraid, I'm afraid," he said quickly. "Please don't ask me any questions."


Anonymous:

The three Uighur airline pilots in the Chinese aviation fleet have been ordered from their cockpits by authorities anxious to maintain security during the Olympic Games.

Their removal, along with the switching of Uighur cabin staff to flights outside the troubled Xinjiang province, follows a renewal of violence by Uighur separatists.

Turkic-speaking Uighurs in Xinjiang province who are eager to found a separate state of East Turkistan have launched a series of attacks apparently timed to coincide with the Beijing Games.

On August 4, 16 police were killed in the ancient Silk Road town of Kashgar when two Uighurs drove a truck into their group before attacking them with home-made bombs and knives. Just six days later a group of about 15 Uighurs attacked several government buildings in Kuqa, on the edge of the Taklamakan desert.

Police returned fire, killing eight of the attackers, while two committed suicide. A security guard and a civilian were killed by the attackers. Then last week a group of people armed with knives fatally stabbed three guards at one of the many road checkpoints that have been set up in Xinjiang to maintain security.

The order to ground the three male pilots came after an incident in March when a 19-year-old Uighur woman from Kuqa was able to slip through the less rigorous security checks for business-class travellers at the airport in Urumqi, the capital. She was then seen acting strangely aboard the flight, state media said.

The woman was found locked in an aircraft toilet with several cans filled with petrol. The plane, en route to Beijing, made an emergency landing in the northwestern city of Lanzhou. Officials described the incident as an attempted terrorist attack.

A Chinese source with aviation contacts said yesterday: “There are only three pilots in the Chinese aviation fleet who are Uighurs.

“They were all told that they would not be allowed to fly, at least until after the Olympics.”

Cabin staff who belong to the Uighur ethnic minority have also been removed from working on flights operating around Xinjiang, the source said. However, they are allowed to work on airliners serving other destinations around China.

Recent travellers to Xinjiang said they noticed only flight attendants of the ethnic Han minority working on flights in the region, but the report could not be officially confirmed. China, which once recruited its airline pilots from the air force, is now facing a shortage as it keeps pace with a rapidly growing economy and an expanding fleet of aircraft.

Latest figures from the General Administration of Civil Aviation, in 2006, showed China has 11,000 pilots and first officers working in 800 airliners.

By 2010 China's fleet will grow to 1,250, requiring at least 6,500 more cockpit crew.

Anonymous:

FAKE FIREWORKS, fake singers and now fake ethnic minorities. Beijing Olympics organisers have admitted that children from China's dominant Han population were used in the opening ceremony last week, not youngsters from all 56 ethnic groups as previously claimed.

The news brings the issue of China's treatment of the minority ethnic groups within its borders back into sharp relief, following accusations that Beijing has sought to drown out dissenting voices from different ethnic groups during the Games.

The Han ethnic group accounts for more than 90 per cent of China's 1.3 billion people and is the dominant cultural group.

The 56 children who carried out the Chinese flag in a moment intended to showcase national harmony were all Han Chinese, but organisers played down the significance of using Han children to represent China's ethnic diversity.

"It is typical for Chinese performers to wear different apparel from different ethnic groups," said Wang Wei, spokesman for the organisers.

"There is nothing special about it. They will wear different apparel to signify people are friendly and happy together."

Organisers often use Han Chinese instead of the genuine ethnic groups in national displays to avoid any spontaneous outbursts of independence.

Meanwhile, Tibetan rights campaigners yesterday staged a protest in Beijing when they abseiled down one of the capital's iconic landmarks to unfurl a "Free Tibet" banner over the top of an Olympic Games banner.

The Students for a Free Tibet group said that five of their members - three Americans, a Briton and a Canadian - were involved in the action at the CCTV headquarters, which was designed by the famous Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas.

All five were later expelled from China

chinationreport:

Answer my questions:
1. What would America or FBI do, if, before the Yankee's baseball game in the stadium, two Chinese journalists climb up Statue of Liberty and hang up a banner which says "Free American Indians" "Independent Texas". Would they be allowed to climb up the Statue of Liberty, would they not be chased out or put in jail?
2. Why when beef or tomato or spinach, or meat sauce is recalled in the USA because of salmonella or whatever, no TV/News/Headline will say: BEEF MADE IN USA dangerous!! Tomatoes MADE IN USA CAUSED DEATH! WHY NOT?
3. If 2 does not happen, why when fish or toys arerecalled from China, TV/Papers/Headlines all read in orange and red warning: Poisonous fish from CHINA. Poisonous toys made in CHINA. Poisonous toothpaste MADE IN CHINA.
4. When the director of Olympic opening admitted the sin of lipsynch, it is the fault of the Communist regime, it is the fault of all the fascist Chinese, it is the totalitarian government.
By this standard, why when Hillary lied about her Bosnia trip, it is not because of the corrupt American election system or brainwashed American people?
5. By the standard applied to China, why when Lindsay Lohan or Paris Hilton are drunk, it is NOT the fault of American Congress???

Answer: Why is every problem from China (I agree that there are problems, it is a big country) made into a political issue and everything happened in China is bad because of its regime?

Read before you judge:
http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice

carryanne:

Here’s a load of trouble to watch out for, don’t let the 50 cent gang make you think you are wrong to be critical and moral, they will try very hard to do that, to squash the spirit and confound the logic.

Associations: democracy=chaos, Falun Gong=boxer rebellion, critical viewpoint=intentional interference with China’s success/jealousy, free expression=too much freedom, calling the air polluted=unpatriotic, China=communist party, Chinese people=victims of international bias, Free Tibet=separatism

Moral relativism, immorality: no sense of right and wrong, two wrongs make a right, moral criticism is seen as attack and the person totally misses the moral point of the criticism, no sense of wanting to rectify any moral shortcoming but instead clinging to saving face, moral criticism=thinking you are so great and showoff

Deflection of criticisms: criticism equals negative, criticism equals hatred, criticism equals not minding ones own business, criticism equals a plot to bring down China’s reputation for some reason, criticism equals political struggling and combat, acting like poor babies (instead of addressing issues they might call it racism, bias, right wing, anti-China to try to get you to subside and let them have their way).

The myth of change: China is changing so much everyday, China needs time to change, we are so free, China has really improved… A the same time they use ‘China is a developing country’ as an excuse for things like air pollution

Stay out of internal affairs: They do not know that the CCP meddles everyday with the affairs of many countries, they do not consider that the situation of human rights is not just ‘political’ but humanitarian, they don’t seem to consider the people under persecution as people, but as mere parts in the machine that is China,

strange group motivation: Many Chinese have a secret dream, a collective goal, many Chinese have a beautiful dream that is created from within the fake reality created under the CCP, thinking that criticism of the party is criticism of Chinese people and collective defensiveness, group thinking that people and countries do not wish China success, frustration that people think they are brainwashed, powerless to change things and therefore using the excuse that time is needed for change,

you have to go to China to know about China: WOuldn’t the opposite be true since China is run by a totalitarian information system? Do you have to go to the sun to know that it’s hot? Can you investigate organ harvesting and crimes against dissident thought in China? You want to know if China is free, go and hold up a banner to express your sense of justice, see how long you will still be in China. Foreigners are just lucky that they will get sent out of the country and not tortured like Chinese.

you don’t understand China: explain it then. Some would want people to ‘understand’ it the way the propaganda dept. would put it, they would have use look at only the 'positive' sides and ignore the brutal horrors just so some people who commit atrocities can save face, evade justice and carry on raping the nation. What should we understand, that Chinese people are perfect, that you really have no flaws and that human rights is not a concept shared by Chinese people, that torture is actually good to do to INNOCENT dissidents, that moral relativism is cool???

http://nomoreccp.wordpress.com/

Anonymous:

I think Olympic in Beijing, is good for everyone.

Not only for American to know more about Chinese and China government, but also let Chinese and Beijing government to closely observe and learn from the world and especially from the Americans.

Basely most Chinese and American and people in the rest of world are good and friendly people, the only thing is that the lack of communication of the people caused a few biased ideas about each other, just like American media that before the Olympic and they took very narrow views about China and Chinese, but after one week they changed their views greatly; also Chinese have chance to observe how George Bush respected American Athletes, and how Bob Costas conversed with his president about Olympic, and US economic problems.

That is the best for the world games, that is why I personally worship athletes of all country, and I think they present much better role that the politicians of any country.

Sport is the best tool for any nation to use it as propaganda machine, and no national flag going to cover all that godly virtues of an individual struggle, both inward and outward, against himself and others, that is cross all culture and nationalism bull-shi-t.

chinationreport:

As we are having Olympics today and the world watching the Games, watching people passing Tiananmen Square with Mao's picture, I have wondered myself many times why China does not take his picture down. We are in a new era now... It does not make any more sense to keep him there.

But as I read all the Western views about China and the many hateful posts (there are plenty, maybe not here but believe me that there are plenty), I am beginning to understand why Mao was important for China, whether through his wrong doing or good doing, he was important to modern China.

1. He was wrong to launch cultural revolution, wrong to sacrifice Chinese lives, wrong to drive China into poverty for so long...

But through this wrong doing, he reminds people everyday how wrong we could be and how disastrous our wrongdoings could become. We learn from that lesson everyday.

2. He was right to declare, yes, listen, he was right to declare to the world, on Oct. 1. 1949: The people of China are now standing up!!

You can say whatever you want, no matter what wrongdoings he committed, Mao gave Chinese people the awareness of themselves as a legitimate people, country that no longer has to take abuse from foreign powers, yes, for the first time in centuries.

China is far from perfect! But its people are confident that we will be capable of writing our own history and defining victory as a nation and a people.

We can have dialogs with anyone that is willing to do so with an open mind. But we are no longer bending backwards to please a foreign master holding a whip, whether with words or with guns.

http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice for your one stop balanced news and views about China

Independent:


I have watched very little of the Olympics, but we watched part of the women's marathon yesterday. This event, perhaps more than any other, represents the essence of the Olympic spirit. Probably no event is more challenging than the marathon. The athletes who finished the event, whether finishing fourth or last, without winning a medal, are all to be commended for their valiant efforts.

rico chipotle:

Chinationreport, I'll be the first to agree that amerindian genocides, arms sales, iraq and afganistan are grave concerns, this is a blog about china. Mentioning the iniquities of the west doesn't justify Tibet, East Turkestan, Darfur.
While much of the western media is biased and could be said to have an agenda, there are many of us who are equally disturbed by and opposed to policies (and crimes) emanating from BOTH Washington and Beijing.
The bottom line is support for International Rule of Law and holding signatories of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to their commitment.
I wish to point out 2 things:
1. You are free to post whatever your opinion is while those who applied for permits to protest in Beijing's 3 designated parks were arrested.
2. The crimes against the americas' first peoples are being addressed in courts of law with land/$ compensation while in China, lawyers who offered to defend Tibetans facing riot-related charges risked losing their right to practice.
As David Lee pointed out, China remains a dictatorship with media censorship and as i pointed out, a contemptuous regard for human rights.

Tom Miller1:

Muddle indeed. I have to say that I am enjoying the Olympics regardless of all of the usual gawdy nationalistic symbols and over-the-top hype by the media and the sports federations and I believe that the Chinese to this point should justly take pride in organizing a sensational Opening Ceremony and games.

I also believe that the foreign exposure of the Chinese to the outside world and our exposure to China are invaluable for the future regardless of any current tensions and differences. In my memory I never remember an Olympics without controversies and some were even boycotted due to politics. In my opinion it's a tribute to common sense that this did not happen this time.

This doesn't mean that issues such as Tibet and the Xinjiang province are not important and that the world shouldn't continue to talk to China about human rights in these areas. The truth is that the Olympics have shed more light on these problems than anything else I remember in the past. That is good for future dialogue I believe.

In turn, we from outside China should try to listen, look, and continue the dialogue with the Chinese to find common ground. Some of the media conflicts with Chinese authorities are almost more humorous than dangerous - only because it's the Olympics. Probing media reports are the stuff that Western journalism is made of but obviously Chinese authorities are not ready for that yet. Without the Olympics they would have even been less so in the future I believe.

We should congratulate China on its Olympics and welcome the Chinese for opening a crack in the wall and providing an overall pleasant experience to the world.

This was not my opinion prior to the start of the Olympics but even I have a muddled mind sometimes. :)

raydeslee:

David Lee:
YOU can express your own opinions and views freely, without fear and punishment.

____________________________

That's surely what we Chinese want, but not what the United States and the Post want, in their wildest dreams, they want Chinese to suffer the fear and punishment now suffered in Irag.

It seems that people in Irag can now express their opinions and views, but they're suffering fear and punishment more than ever, even if they express nothing at all!

Raoul:

Lao tzu gave the world Lao tzu. Appropriating the works of individuals for nationalist glory is the saddest aspect of statist myth making.

David Lee:


To those who defend China blindly and emotionally on this forum:

Improving human right condition in China, as done and will be done by all decent people in the world, is to create such an environment in China as this one here in the Washington Post, so that YOU can express your own opinions and views freely, without fear and punishment.

While you are having the privilege in the US, please think about your own fellow countrymen who do not have it in China.

frak:

The Chinese gave the world Lao-Tzu, enough said...

David Lee:

Having seen so many (emotional) posts about China is definitely a positive thing for all people, Chinese or non-Chinese, as we all now can look at this nation with objective views and logic reasoning.

Lets take a brief look at what this country is in terms of the fact:

1. There is only one, yes, 1, TV station belonging to the government and Xinghua news agency controls all news outlests

2. There is an official organization called Central Propaganda Unit (Zhong Xuan Bu) which sets the limits and restrictions to all, yes, ALL, news outlets, what you can say or what you can not say.

3. The official Chinese history book, the one that EVERY school boy and girl reads, only has a few pages about the notorious Culture Revolution. The amazing part is not only how terse this long and critical period of history in China, it is how the government defines it - it is call "Ten year Tumult".

There are more facts that many people do not know.

Folks, this is the true China, a country under a tight grip of a group of communists who assume the power that is equivalent to God!

種花最污處:

風光羅馬日漸靡
The glories of Rome decline day by day
上國重臨天下期
The Middle Kingdom is longed for return by all
從來王者多磨難
A true King must walk through much hardship
欲傾大樹有鼠痴
A Giant Tree must meet those mice try to full it down
胸懷太窄容有盡
For their minds are too small to contain the large
難憋尿想計無施
Pity them! with unhealthy thoughts like holding back a pee
幸有阿鑽博客在
Lucky them! to have found John's blog
好讓愚頑作尿池
Serving the stubborn fools as their peeing pool

Someone who has spent twenty years in Both US and China, respectively:

I don't think that the American public can get a coherent picture of China from its media even if everything in the media about China were true. Of course, the bias the US media makes things even worse.
The astronomical size of China is just beyond the comprehension of most Americans. The discussion about the whole China (not just its government) being good or bad is meaningless. China IS a reality.

chinationreport:

I agree on the copyright issue and also agree on his conclusion that China is hungry for anything positive about China. The Chinese government often filters anti-China articles from the West so that Chinese people don't get even more upset with the West. As you can see from the attitude of most Chinese people posting here, they are upset with the West's China basing attitude! And these are intelligent well-informed people.

Those upset most of the Chinese people are people like this:
They probably know nothing about China's past and present, all their knowledge about China is from reading a few books about cultural revolution (if that much) or listening to TV sound-bites. They know nothing about what the West did in China and the developing world, have never talked to any Chinese, or let's say not more than 10... They have forgotten about American Indians, or the fate of other natives in New Zealand, Australia...
What they are good at is exercising judgment - with special glasses, full of biases.

Why can't they put themselves in others' shoes? Or simply reflect on their own history? Weren't London and Boston filled with dark dust and never saw a bright sky during the time of industrialization? Didn't America sell more arms to African brutal regimes than any other nations on earth and together? Google American arms sales to Congo, or whatever brutal regime that existed. Didn't Britain impose two wars on China to enslave generations of Chinese with Opium? Didn't Dr. King get shot for a reason? Was that long time ago? Doesn't Obama still receive death threats because he is black and many whites can't imagine having a President of color?

Why applying different standard when it comes to China. The progress made in China has been enormous!!! I myself and millions of Chinese ordinary people like myself are best examples!! Born in a humble family in Hunan, by an illiterate mother, I was raised with little food on the table and old clothes from cousins and siblings... Today, I am blogging in English and speak German and make plenty to provide for my family and children, my mother can watch Olympic Games on TV or PC as she pleases... I am not alone!! Millions of people live in a transformed life. Are people blind not to see this, or deaf not to hear us?

Sadly, the more likely we have an economic recession, the stronger we will have China-bashing. The West needs a scapegoat. Since India is a democracy planted by Britain, so the West can not pick India to be the scapegoat. India has a democracy but hundreds of millions of people live in slums and are hungry everyday.

Why don't you bashers try to starve for three days - it is good for your waistline - but most importantly, you will see whether at that time you want to talk about human rights or just plain rice!!

You are on a dangerous route to anger the 1.3 billion Chinese living in China and abroad, who, for the first time of their adult life, feel proud of their country, not because it is perfect, but because of the direction it is heading, the progress it has made!! You are killing their joy, reminding them of their past humiliation, making them relive hatred when it is time for reconciliation.

How did the WWII start? It started by a economic recession and a few people losing jobs to Jews who accumulated wealth through hard work! Jews became the scapegoat and they were and are still a small population. You can make Chinese the scapegoat for global warming, Darfur crisis, economic recession, lost jobs, higher food prices, oil prices... You know the difference between Chinese and Jews? There are much more of them and it is unlikely that they disappear soon. The tougher you get on China and Chinese, the tougher and better they will become. They have survived much worse hardship than a few harsh words from the Western free biases.

Staying ignorant is your privilege and your loss. Or please wake up and please stay informed.

I created this website: http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice
to link news and views about China from balanced sources. Please visit daily to get informed.

Idora:

Given Pomfret's previous blog in which he jumps on the media's lip-synch-bashing-bandwagon, it's nice to find him now counseling us with such equanimity. I guess we have the brilliant Mr. Myerson to thank for that!

RobertJG:

Chinese
I feel the same way about internet posters who are disruptive and useless to meaningful and informative discussions and comments. But don't let them force you away from these comment sections because that's exactly what they want. People who have constructive insights and ideas are sorely needed in all comment sections.

Maxwell:

A simple litmus test of any story about China is to ask whether such a story would pass muster if the subject country were, say, France or Canada. The hidden assumptions are so many and the ideological bias so clear if we think in these terms.

Months away from the Games it would have been possible to predict the coverage since the themes are always the same: human rights, supposed support for Sudan's repression in Darfur (strange how no one cares that Japan, India, and Malaysia are just as invested in Sudan's oil industry as China but receive no mention. No one cares either that most of the oil produced in Sudan makes its way onto the global market, where we buy our oil), pollution, crooked cadres, the rapacious capitalist class.

I think we're so completely wedded to the idea of our "freedom" and how it imbues us and our country with total moral authority that we're unable to conceive of a society that operates under different political systems but where people live lives with dignity. And anyway, the way we actually treat freedom, it basically boils down to an issue of consumer choice.

This myth of absolute American freedom is finally being challenged, which is probably a good thing for the notion of freedom, if not necessarily the world.

Tthe articles by Brooks and Meyerson mentioned by JP are so bad, there's really nothing to say in response.

rico chipotle:

There are several factors which must be taken into consideration. First, that 9y.o. boy who saved 2 class-mates, what no-one has addressed is why he was in that situation. While 7,000 "tofu-schools" collapsed, grieving sichuan parents were barred from holding memorials and refused legal recourse. Huang qi, a human rights activist who attempted to collect data about corruption and shoddy construction was arrested for "possession of state secrets".
Secondly, there's the litany of abuses of human rights resultinging in:
1. Spain's judicial enquiry into Li Peng, Jian Zenim and (an informal parallel investigation due to diplomatic immunity as head of state) Hu Jintao's roles in possible Tibetan genocide.
2. Italy's tabled anti-laogai legislation which condemns laogai and bans its products.
3. U.S. Senate Resolution 574 which condemns gross Uighur human rights violations, especially towards women and tantamount to genocide.
4. ICC's possible indictment of Beijing's client, President Al-Bashir of Sudan.
Furthermore, Beijing uses its $ clout to block Tibet from any and all UN agendas. It vetoed sanctions against Mugabe.

Chinese:

Independent:

Informed persons and those with moral values need to realize many of those who come to these forums or to internet chat rooms may be trolls, persons who say outrageous statements to disrupt a rational discussion of issues. There are also many very ignorant, bigoted persons who try to disrupt forums or chat rooms. I have not been to an internet chat room in many months because some of the persons there were very rude and verbally abusive.

Despite the unnecessary invasion of Iraq, clearly based upon deception and lies, the violations of the Constitution and widespread human rights abuses, about 30% of the American populace still support the Bush-Cheney regime. Probably about 20% of voters will not vote for an African-American, such as Barack Obama, for president solely because of his race.

So some people, especially many foreigners, need to realize there are tens of millions of persons in this country who are ignorant and bigots, as well as having little or no sensitivity to other cultures. Try to ignore them.

===================================

Thanks,Independent.We begin to realize that there are some trolls (like "free Tibet" or eastern Turkestan activists,I guess) who indiscriminately bash Chinese on any issues.They pretend to be a racialist American and sometimes play a role as an abrasive Chinese,trying to antagonize Chinese and American as well. It is despicable and disgusting.

Most of our Chinese here disagree with our government on many issues,but we also dislike those ungrounded slander against our country,especially on racial and cultural difference.

frak:

张:
As a 15-year-old chinese girl who reads NY times, washington post and the christian science monitor everyday..i want to say,
Are some of you really that stupid thinking all of us are making comments under paid ??
拜托~
If corporate media are the only outlets you have, then you are coming up on the wrong end of the stick. Granted , though, after 8 years of living under this fascist regime, one tends to get a little paranoid and trigger-happy towards some commentary. But even some Republicans are now starting to see the light:

http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts08152008.html

a chinese student:

As a chinese post-graduate student, like most of my peers, I have learned English-the most widely used language-for more than 10 years, so you think it is a government who wants to fool its people will do? As a chinese maxim has said: (绝知此事要躬行)to know something, you should learn it by yourself, welcome to China someday, to learn about our country by yourself, you will find a wholly different aspect from some of your daily reports.

Independent:


Informed persons and those with moral values need to realize many of those who come to these forums or to internet chat rooms may be trolls, persons who say outrageous statements to disrupt a rational discussion of issues. There are also many very ignorant, bigoted persons who try to disrupt forums or chat rooms. I have not been to an internet chat room in many months because some of the persons there were very rude and verbally abusive.

Despite the unnecessary invasion of Iraq, clearly based upon deception and lies, the violations of the Constitution and widespread human rights abuses, about 30% of the American populace still support the Bush-Cheney regime. Probably about 20% of voters will not vote for an African-American, such as Barack Obama, for president solely because of his race.

So some people, especially many foreigners, need to realize there are tens of millions of persons in this country who are ignorant and bigots, as well as having little or no sensitivity to other cultures. Try to ignore them.

E Chang:

Thank you! Your criticism of the two articles are right on the money. China is a complex country. The two articles try to draw sweeping conclusions based on utterly flimsy and laughable "evidence". It is extremely lazy journalism on their part. Disgraceful.

Shalom Freedman:

Of course the criticisms are in place. 'China' is a vast world, and in any vast world there are complicated realities no generalization can contain. There is life, and life means exceptions and surprises. Nonetheless there is something true in what David Brooks says about China being a collectivist authoritarian society.
Consider one basic horrifying fact. China is a society in which according to various estimates over fifty million and perhaps closer to one- hundred million people were murdered by the Mao and the Communist collective leadership.
It is a society which has to manage its hundreds of millions and does so by not allowing them to freely look at the Internet, or express political dissent.
Its system does not focus on individual rights and freedoms as the American one does.

chinationreport:

Whatever does not kill China and Chinese, will make them tougher. They have been around for a long time and it looks like this might continue!!

So, don't give China a break! Toughen it up even more so that it can rise higher and further.

Or: maybe this is something useful:

“知彼知己,百戰不殆” – Sun Tzu, 544—496 BC
Knowing your opponent as well as yourself, you are safe to fight a multitude of battles.

“思遠思近, 常謀共赢” - Chination LLC, 2008 AD
No matter the distance between adversaries, strive for a win-win solution.

Stop arguing. Get informed.
From:
http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice

Chris:

No!! Keep it coming, that's the whole purpose of the coming out party.

To be factual:

1. 430 million usd isn't noly used for open ceremony show, but for airpollution promotion, for transportation, for fundamental construction.
2. which kind of democracy give Us spy airplane the right to fly near chinese coastline?
3. media is rabbish,just make Us people hate Chinese, and vice versa!

Incomplete:

"The titile "Should We Give China a Break?" is a worng question. The journlists should stick to the principles of journalism they have been advocating: objectivity and balance, if they do so, they don't need to ask this question. The question itself indicates they didn't do what they said."

So bombarding China with critisims--fair and harsh--on an hourly basis is what you call "principles of journalism" and "objectivity and balance"? Pomfret is right. What you really care about is not the well-being of ordinary Chinese people, it is the fear that your ideals and your way of life are being challenged that make you constantly pathetic and parochial under the false pretenses of "objectivity and balance".

张:

As a 15-year-old chinese girl who reads NY times, washington post and the christian science monitor everyday..i want to say,
Are some of you really that stupid thinking all of us are making comments under paid ??
拜托~

frak:

Like I said, the NeoCons thrive on ignorance and conflict. One of the problems with an open internet forum is that it is vulnerable to abuses and agendas gone ebola. Plenty of idiot posts on here come from CENTCOM or Mossad or wherever, to generate disunity and promote the divisive agenda of the rich elites. Wars and hard drugs are their most profitable business.
The essential spirit of the Olympics is that the world can come together for a big party, like the World Cup. It's vulnerable to hijack , like Hitler's Berlin Olympics, and the patriotic fervor is exploitable for war incitement. The poor of the host city often suffer from the construction projects, due to diverting of funds from the public space and often being displaced from their homes, and the cities are often left with huge debts and architectural pink elephants. All the world wants to party together in life though, even if warfare and the ugly human traits often surface. Budwieser tastes better when the whole world is partying.

It was perfectly logical from the neoconvicts point of view to have US/Israeli proxy puppet Georgia attack Russia on Opening Day of the Olympics. Neocons thrive on bringing out the worst qualities in humans: war, murder, torture, abuse, underhanded graft and corruption. Unity of Humanity is anethema towards their agenda: war and violent abuse of their fellow man is the bread and butter from which they've thrived. Humans mean little to them, except in so far as they can make a profit for the neocon elites, hence they have their hands in all the corrupt human evils from which a profit can be turned: War-profiteering, drug dealing and mafias, gov't contract ripoffs, you name it, if its an anti-human source of profit, they do it. Humans are capable of the whole range of possible behaviours, its part of the adaptable nature which has helped us to survive. Something unifying like the Olympics poses a serious threat to the Neoconvicts..They need to bring out the worst (see 9-11)..

YD:

The titile "Should We Give China a Break?" is a worng question. The journlists should stick to the principles of journalism they have been advocating: objectivity and balance, if they do so, they don't need to ask this question. The question itself indicates they didn't do what they said.

M:

Thanks to John Pomfret for this piece. I've only spent two weeks in modern China, but the diversity and complexity was astounding. The ideas we can wrap it up under the label "collectivist" or argue that the opening ceremonies are a greater threat than Russia's invasion of Georgia are both ridiculous.

I was particularly glad to see Pomfret's comments about the Meyerson op-ed. A little hall monitor rescuing one of his classmates has nothing to do with communism and everything to do with self-sacrifice for . . . wait for it . . . an INDIVIDUAL. He didn't become a martyr for the state. He did feel a sense of obligation because he was in a position of authority. If you're really looking for a Chinese philosopher to pin that idea to, look at Confucius, not Mao. In fact, I thought the most striking thing about the opening ceremonies was the complete lack of reference to communism while Confucianism was clearly highlighted.

R Wendell Harwell:

Wow. I cannot believe that so many of these posts are so hateful and their posters so ignorant. I think Pomfret's articles are generally pretty accurate. It's difficult for me to understand why so many people seem to hate the Chinese. The people of most countries in the world differentiate between governments and their citizens - in other words, while governments can be terrible, their citizens can still be respected. It seems that many people in the U.S. lump citizens and governments together - don't like a government, then hate their populace. What a bunch of small minded people.

By the way, I have noticed that the people who write the most vitriolic posts seem to be afraid to state their full names. I wonder why that could be.

R Wendell Harwell

llew jones:

Think Brooks may be half right. One needs to remember that China has no history, long or short, of democracy.It is important to know democracy has never existed in China as its history has been a transition from feudalism to communism. Beside that its principal religion, confucianism focused on an ordered harmonious society.

Then the Cultural Revolution ensured that any embrace of Western Enlightenment ideas emanating from its academic elites was hindered.

The bottom line is that if China is to have a form of democracy it will be one that is in tune with its history and culture. Individualism is not the norm, even in America, as the article points up and it should not be difficult to show that democracies don't thrive without common concern for others and the nation.

a chinese:

To Americans who notices China's rise in medal counting in the Olympic games. Actually knowledgeable Chinese respect America as a very strong country in sports. Even if China's total medal count is equal to America's, China's medal count per capita is still four or five times smaller than America's, because China has a population that is four or five times bigger.

I also know that currently an average Chinese has only 1/10 of building space for sports than an average Japanese has. It is just one of many indicators that China is still quite poor on average. China still has a long way to go - and it is important for us to keep learning from the rest of the world. Together we can make the world a much better place to live in. With the advance of technologies, the world has more than enough room for all of us to prosper.

Buck Batard:

Some of the comments here are just utterly astounding. I've seen many of my fellow Americans turned into hating vitriol filled authoritarians/authoritarian followers; people who buy into the rhetoric of what they hear on the radio and on what is called news in the US. I never heard that kind of hate filled rhetoric from my father's generation, those who fought the Nazis and who have been called the Greatest Generation.

As an American, it's disheartening to see that kind of attitude in the country that has long lived by the motto "give me your tired, your poor, your teaming masses yearning to be free". And one of these Chinese haters who I presume imagines himself as an "America lover" had the gall to insult me, someone who is a product of the rice culture in America, the South Carolina coast, home of the world famous Carolina Gold strain of rice and a fellow American who loves rice dishes of all kinds and who still wishes he'd gotten his grandma's recipe for Charleston red rice before she passed away.

I've been following James Fallows from the Atlantic Magazine on his blog blog by reading his dispatches from China and find a balanced perspective on all things relate to America and China.

He contrasts David Brook's Ayn Rand inspired ignorant posts with that of those who provide a more balanced perspective. I urge you to read the article he recommended.
See:
http://www.nybooks.com/articles/21715

To the guy who insulted my love for the divine rice dishes of the SC coast: You're a jerk.

109:

To chris:

chinese people doesn't not care what the white man says, they can go F themselves.

Is that right? If you don't care, then what are you doing here on this website? Why would you spend even 1 second to read what people write and then respond?

In reality, chinese people care a great what the world thinks of them. Why else would they spend 43 billion usd to show them?

Thank you for choosing your foul language. You reveal yourself, your mother and father and their education and child raising, your family, your lack of education, your friends. Its the last defense of the uneducated and backward person.

a chinese:

I think that the post has a good point - individual rights are at the core of American system of values. It is unfair though to describe China as a "collective society", which is a biased stereotype of an enormous nation. In fact, the reason that China could develop in the past three decades is precisely because of growing individual freedom. China derived her success from learning from the rest of the world, in particular the West. As China becomes richer, and as the common people become more educated and more vocal, a type of democracy is developing - one that combines individual rights and collective interests such as social stability.

chinationreport:

It is quite sad to see those hatred-filled posts. How can you sleep well every night with such ugly thoughts on your mind?

Chinese believe in tomorrow - 'a bright day'
Tomorrow will be bright and good to those that believe in it.

http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice for your daily balanced news and views about China

chris:

chinese people doesn't not care what the white man says, they can go F themselves.

Crease:

All this posturing, all this chest thumping, all this nonsense here. I would argue that any great nation is measured by its extent of real benevolence and responsibility to care for its citizens and that same generosity and benevolence towards other cultures and their opinions, including a love and defense of diversity and plurality both within and without its borders. China cannot claim any of this; neither can American (any longer). In America, the Fourth Estate is in shambles. In China, corruption going to the highest levels of power to insure its longevity has created a vacuum of disparity among its citizens. Spending 43 billion and putting on a "new face" on its capital or winning gold medals doesn't make a great society. Justice, fairness, rule of law, acceptance of others, encouragement and assurance and insurance of personal liberty, the right to travel and move about freely, those are the ideals of a great culture. What nation can claim that? What message did the Chinese Olympic ceremony convey to the world? Its potential power? It has no mandate to lead since the very ideals of greatness are elusive to its citizens and to the rest of the world. America cant guarantee those same ideals either, but nor can any nation currently in the United Nations. We have a long way to go. We begin by being honest on both sides-In terms of these ideas, what is it that makes China great and weak? What is it that makes America great and weak? To the Chinese – you need to be honest enough to answer those two questions; and, Americans too. But first, stop your hatred because it only brings you shame.

Racism:

The blatant racism on this board is astounding and sad. I am glad that each side can retort to such low levels. What a wonderful world we live in.

Dichotomize all you want, but the fact that there are comments in support of China's efforts to better their society cannot be contributed solely to their government. Should we assume all pro American comments are from the CIA? The Pew Survey of Countries found that China had the highest level of satisfaction and optimism. There is a reason why.

If we in the US cannot provide more balanced coverage, we lose absolute credibility.

Amazed (Again):

1. "Myerson ends his piece with the following line: "A nation that can assemble 2,000 perfectly synchronized drummers has clearly staked its claim as the world's assembly line."

And you conclude, almost, with "That's definitely food for thought."

On the other hand if that nation has inserted electronic bugs in the ears of all drummers (yeah, Mr. Pomfret they were there) and is able, one presumes thereby, to keep them on their toes with cue shocks, then one submits this is little more than doing with thousands of humans what Dr. Pavlov was able to achieve in his laboratory with his dogs many years earlier!!

Further, it perfectly personifys a well-oiled command society.

But you and the media gave them one more break here too!

2. Lest one seem too critical of your analysis, rest assured one agrees fully with your words when you admit:

"My view as usual is a muddle."

109:

What a bunch of neo-maoist idiot students from the university of wuhan speaking their revisionist garbage here. they are the biggest joke of all. go away little boys.

Kalsten:

Paul Nolan: "China is great, and its showing up the laziness and selfishnes of the GOP run United States. We are not only behind, but we dont deserve to lead."

I'm actually starting to agree with this sentiment, despite the bashing that China regularly gets in the American press. My neighborhood is filled with Korean War veterans and so we're understandably predisposed to hate China-- Chinese soldiers killed and wounded many people from the neighborhood in that war, and it was really the first time when the Americans (allied with Australians, British, Turks and many others) were defeated in war. (A draw against the North Koreans but the Chinese succeeded in pushing us back.) So we have every reason to be very China-phobic.

But the truth is, as I've come to realize over the years, the Chinese have a lot of initiative, a government that is changing from an authoritarian system to a meritocratic one with checks and balances, an entrepreneurial culture and yes, a culture of sport and athletics already so strong that the Chinese are smashing us in the Olympics (China: 27 gold medals, USA: 16 gold medals).

Maybe it's my cynicism, but I have trouble seeing the USA as "defender of democracy" anymore when we invade a sovereign Iraq and cause a royal mess of things there, with millions of refugees, while the US government wastes billions of dollars paying corrupt and sleazy contractors big money to drive empty trucks throughout Iraq. Or when we invade Serbia in 1999 b/c Bill Clinton wanted to distract from his impeachment humiliation and Hillary Clinton and Madeleine Albright wanted an easy target, detaching Kosovo (led by the al-Qaeda allied KLA) and setting a precedent for other countries (hint: Russia) to do the same. Or when we fall $10 trillion in debt. Or torture prisoners in Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay. Both Clinton and Bush are responsible for this mess, and they've made a mockery of this nation.

I actually think it'll be a good thing for the USA to slip to #2 sometime in the near future. Sometimes, a bit of humility can be the best thing to help spark reform. And we need reforms immediately.

jesterbones:

There seems to be a tremendous deficit of knowledge about the Chinese people, government, and history within these comments. Ultimately, the sort of unthoughtful, unsubstantiated opinions that make up these pages simply serve to bolster the point Pomfest is making.

Actually, these comments give us even more insight into the root cause: maybe our press is a product of a largely ignorant American people? If we are going to take the time to express our opinions, then maybe we ought to take the time to ensure that those judgements are well-informed.

Amazed:

"Should we give China a break?"
(Yet another?)

Well a good question indeed in light of the multitude of "breaks' we have already given them over these last sixteen years or so.

Perhaps Mr. Pomfret would find it beneficial if one offered a list of a few "breaks" that come most readily to mind. Hence this amateur's effort:

1. Bill Clinton in part under the illusion that Red China would be a fair and viable long-term trading partner of the U.S. was gulled into the belief that he should work hand in glove with American Multilateral Corporations and so encourage the flight of vast U.S. corporate investment capital and jobs from the U.S. to China. (Political contributions from the MNC's didn't deter his attitude either, need one note.)

2. In order to make this evil synergism work to its maximum profitability for the American capitalists they needed an assured, open, rich market, e.g. the U.S., for starters.

With bought congressmen and senators U.S. tariffs were moved lower and lower until they were virtually tariffs in name only.

3. Recognizing that millions of U.S. workers in manufacturing were about to be displaced by this break for Chinese workers and U.S. capitalists and so might generate at last a countervailing political reaction, Clinton and his MNC collaborators (and the Chicoms) decided it would be a very good idea to kill Congress' remaining right to review trading relations with the Chicoms each year and if they failed to abide by WTO etc. trade agreements then Congress was still free to take action.

Obviously this would never do.

So happy day! Clinton and MNC kept legislators on the Hill promptly passed a law giving the Chicoms another break, i.e. they would be granted Permanent Normal(sic)Trade Relations (PNTR) with the U.S.

Now elder Statesman of the Democrat Party, Clinton then avowed that this enactment was one of the top four achievements of his administration! (No doubt NAFTA was another.)

4. The Chicoms despite a vast supply of unemployed, young, intelligent, docile (oh yeah for sure docile)and starving workers were an American capitalist's dream come true. Not content with this enormous absolute advantage in production costs, the Chicoms also established the value of the Yuan at roughly forty-percent below its market value.

The "China price" thus insured the Chicoms a competitive "break" that insured enormous profits for American MNC and Chicom investors and the destruction of all unassisted foreign manufacturers as well.

5. The U.S. Treasury Dept. is charged by Congress to review exchange rates and report each six months whether they detect any sign that the Chicoms are guilty of exchange rate manipulation.

Guess what? Each six months, regular as clockwork, Treasury reports with, one assumes a straight face, "No sir there ain't no manipulation going on here--well at least one that meets Treasury's "technical" definition."

(N.B. Just how Treasury defines "manipulation" is unclear, but as Bill Clinton once sagely reminded us: "it all depends on your definition." Yet another break for the Chicoms, Mr. Pomfret and each sixs months another one on the way.)

6. The Chicoms are given breaks each time they commit intellectual piracy of software, DVDs and such without payment of royalty to the owner. Right Mr.Pomfret?

7. When the Chicoms order a fighter pilot to ram an American surveillance aircraft over international water and then due to crew stupidity allowed to steal the crown jewels of American electronic surveillance and the U.S. president doesn't offer a whimper one submits that "breaks" don't come any bigger.

8. At present the Chicoms have tens of thousands of front companies in the U.S. actively engaged in industrial espionage. No effort is made to close them down. How about this for a break Mr. Pomfret?

9. Ethnic Chinese--some pretending to take the oath of U.S. citizenship--have been caught stealing military etc. secrets from the U.S. and the U.S. press refuses to report fully such acts to the American people and thus collaborates with the Chicoms in their work. Give "em a break you suggest?"

10. The vast new Chicom Embassy will clearly have room for an exceptionally large staff. What one innocently inquires will be their occupation? Building good will with the American people? Cultural events so we can hum "getting to know you, getting to know all about you" --were it only so.

No at a minimum the Pentagon had better look to its security on a priority basis and the U.S. Patent Office should dedicate a wing for use only by Embassy attached engineers, IT specialists, and you name it.

Remember Mr. Pomfret the National Chicom Motto is "Anything you can make, we can make better (and cheaper)"

Give China a break the man says--I say give me and the American people a break Mr. Pomfet.

P.S. At least one Chicom female gymnast is under the age of sixteen as reported by the Chicom media and when inquiries are made they reply:

"She is old enough to compete"

Yet another break, eh, Mr.Pomfret?

kuvasz:

Nope, since the Chinese are inveterate liars their lies ought to be exposed fully and widely.

btw: Can somebody get me on the list of posters who get paid by the Chinese government to smootch ChiCom butt on Western websites like the Post?

and to @Peter, thanks for letting us know about those three hundred million Chinese who were lifted out of poverty but you failed to mention the additional hundred million who were hurled into their graves at the same time.

Peter:

Post American world,

That's great. China's government has helped to deliver unprecedented economic growth for many of its citizens. That has nothing to do with the question I asked, however.

If you wish to say, "The government can do whatever it wants as long as it delivers economic growth," that is a legitimate point of view. There's no need to mask this in thin-skinned ranting.

Can't Sleep:

Anyone who bothers to read and reflect on the multiple comments included in this thread offered by Red Chinese agents, including "useful idiot" Brother Pomfret, who was under any illusion as to the clear and present danger posed by the Chicoms to the United States (and the West for that matter) is a hopeless fool well deserving his terrible fate.

Andy Moursund:

Pomfret's take isn't that unreasonable, except that the "private" enterprise in China he speaks of in such glowing terms resembles the sort of "private enterprise" they had in Mussolini's Italy far more than the typical sort of private enterprise we have in the West.

Plenty of businessmen here regularly criticize our government and prosper in spite of it. When that happens on a regular basis in China, I'll begin to believe that "private enterprise" there is alive and well. We have our Blackwaters and other politically favored corporations, but over there that's the basic working model, and not the subject of exposes.

And BTW there's absolutely nothing that precludes criticizing BOTH governments, when warranted. Not all of us who are critical of China are fans of the Bush Administration, either. But the question remains as to what direction the Chinese are really headed, and to what extent their model will be able to cope with increasing environmental degradation and a population density that is going nowhere but up. Any dictatorship can put on a spectacle.

Citizen of the post-American world:

@Peter

There is indeed a system in place, in China, that prevents abuse of power. That exclusively Chinese system has begun ensuring, uncompromisingly, that the greatest abuse of power known to mankind would cease.

As you may know, within a very short time, that system has successfully lifted out of misery and poverty some 300 million Chinese citizens, an unprecedented feat the United Nations have celebrated as having been key, statistically, to reducing WORLD poverty.

Let me spell this out for you.

From now on, there are three hundred million more human beings (nine/ten countries with a population the size of Canada's, approximately one with that of the US) who can eat, who have shelter, who do receive adequate medical care, who have got an education and who by now earn a decent living.

That achievement in the domain of basic human rights is unprecedented in the history of mankind. That achievement is more than was achieved, for centuries, by the Western colonial and imperial systems of human rights, in what we have come to call "the Third World". That is what is meant, first and foremost, by "China has raised its head and risen". THAT is China's model for the world!

On human rights in China, this is just a beginning, the beginning of the beginning! Now even that modest beginning will not make the West rejoice. The West will not give China credit for it. Even that modest beginning the West finds scary, not to say terrifying.

I know, what you are after is not that but the so-called "rule of law" Western style, and all that formal Western jazz! Yet the first of their human rights those 1.3 billion people, in China, want to see respected (not enshrined formally but respected every day) are the ones I listed above.

The so-called "rule of law" will follow. It will come in due course, the Chinese way. Chinese society alone will decide, not the West. To repeat, the time the West would decide for China and impose (in the vapours of opium) its more than questionable "values" to the rest of the world is over.

I shall conclude with what ought to be, for us, a humbling reminder.

Recently, in an attempt to prevent abuse of power by employers and to have them respect their employees' basic human rights, Chinese authorities introduced work contracts, for experienced workers. Well, as was soon reported in the Chinese media, it took only a few days for Western employers operating in China to begin firing their old employees, only to rehire them as NEW employees, the following day. THAT is the loophole our capitalists of human rights thought they had found, in no time, so as to bypass Chinese law, and refuse to offer contracts to their experienced employees.

Needless to say, Chinese authorities immediately insisted that such a piece of trickery would not do, that such abuse of power would not be tolerated. Western employers would have to respect Chinese law, or else...

I therefore insist, better leave Chinese human rights in Chinese hands for Chinese people themselves to handle. They, and only they, know what is best for themselves and for the motherland.

To repeat: there is no "break" for them to expect from Petty West. None!

That said, I wish them ALL the best.

Anonymous:

Chinese policies and law department official Mao Gongning, appearing at a news conference on ethnic minority rights, called the recent attacks in Xinjiang the work of a handful of criminals. He says they will not affect relations between Beijing and China's eight million Uighur Muslims, who are based in the far-western province.

He says the attacks are not related to ethnic or religious issues.

Chinese officials say Uighur separatists have carried out three violent attacks in Xinjiang in the past two weeks, killing 16 policemen in one incident and three security officers in another.

The government official says most of China's Uighurs welcome the economic progress in the region, although he says minority areas such as Xinjiang and Tibet lag behind China's more developed eastern coastline.

China has also dealt with simmering tensions in Tibet and nearby Chinese provinces since riots in March. The government says the riots claimed the lives of 22 people, mostly ethnic Chinese. Tibet's Indian-based government-in-exile says more than 200 Tibetans were killed in a crackdown by Chinese forces on anti-government protesters and rioters.

Government officials accuse the Tibetan Buddhist leader, the Dalai Lama, of backing a separatist movement, which he denies. Asked about the Dalai Lama's support among Tibetans, Chinese ethnic affairs official Wu Shimin said the Dalai Lama's supporters use religion to entice the public. But he denies that the Buddhist leader has a large following.

The Chinese official accuses the Western media of biased reporting and says it ignores the economic advances in Tibet and other minority regions.

Security is tight surrounding the Beijing Olympics, following threats by Uighur separatists of a terrorist attack to disrupt the games. Officials in Beijing insist the games are safe.
Chinese security personnel are reportedly keeping close watch on Uighur residents of Beijing, and China has tightened visa restrictions to keep out potential foreign protesters.

A British reporter was dragged from the scene and briefly detained Wednesday as he covered a pro-Tibet demonstration, one of several small protests in recent days. Five foreigners who unfurled a banner saying "Free Tibet" were detained and have since been deported.


Anonymous:

Mr. Fan Yuansheng Xi Jinping Fu Chung (also known as the self-appointed, "Paul Nolan"),

It doesn't matter how many "names" that the CCP party assigns (and pays) you to post on American forums . . . we Americans know you for what you are.

The CCP should pay for you to learn better use of the English language BEFORE turning you loose on the American forums, even if you're earning a paltry sum for your relentless venomous spouting.

Have a good day there in Beijing, Mr. "Paul Nolan" . . . and be careful of how much of that air you breath while eating your boiled rice.

Anonymous:

wow, I can't believe these Americans.
They are losing it:)
Just like their girls that can't stick the landing:)

I am telling the truth about physical difference btwn Chinese and American from age development.

And these Americans losing it, immediately want slave our girls in their 3000 square suburb mansion, and using their money to pay teenage sex (Remember those young girls are still 16), and disrespect Chinese women being not Real Women like their American women in their biased judgmental view?

How gracious are these Americans?

Maybe you all should loose some weight for your women. No one wants to stroll with pigs? Absolutely disgusting:)


Paul Nolan:

China is great, and its showing up the laziness and selfishnes of the GOP run United States. We are not only behind, but we dont deserve to lead.

Buck Batard:

I'd much rather the media question all the terrible things happening in the US while encouraging our politicians to do better. We don't need to hear about how "bad" China is and how "good" we are. We need to hear about what great problems this nation faces and what we need to do to solve our social problems. The Chinese are much like us anyway. They are going to whip us in the game of global competition by concentrating on creating a better society and cooperating with other nations.

If we continue to maintain our military industrial complex and the National Security State, the one invented after World War II and beefed up ever since, we are doomed. China and Russia are teaming up as I write to face down the belligerent nation that wants to conquer the world. In 1933 the worlds nations took several paths. The morally superior nations who were not known for militarization won that one. If history repeats itself, we are in for a world of trouble.

Most of the complaints I read about regarding China in our papers are ones we often the same ones we in the United States deal with. (who remembers the horror stories about protesters at the Republican Convention in NY in 2004?)

Health care for instance. If the rich nation of China turns it's attention to solving that problem, they will solve it. The Republican Governor of California and the President of the US both proposed national health care in the late 1940's. And yet still we don't have it.

I could go on and on. I'd say let's fix our own problems before we devote enormous resources to bullying our neighbors into doing better. But that would and will inevitably fall on deaf ears.

DocChuck:

Hey, Mr. "Anonymous chinese",

Your disgusting remarks to Amy:

("And also, if you see me naked, you probably think I am 14, and if you look at my face then you may think I am 26, but my passport says I am 35.")

Yes, Mr. Anonymous, you chinese "men" with your diminutive body parts are VERY deceiving to the rest of the developed world's races.

However, your vile remarks and weak attempts at sarcasm only demonstrate why MOST chinese women would sell their souls to be married to a REAL American or European.

Your chinese women even BEG Caucasian men on the internet to "marry" them and to deliver them from the diminutive chinese "men."

Yes, I am an American. I HAVE had, and CAN have any chinese female I desire. Problem is, I prefer REAL women.

Your ancient custom of "killing" the first born (if the infant happened to be female) is a result of chinese female REVULSION with the chinese MALE!

You have a real problem, Mr. Anonymous. You need to seek professional counseling . . . if you have that in china.

Somali:

The Terrorist They Call "president" Is The Enemy Of Humanity!!


http://www.alternet.org/story/95109/?page=2

Read the above story and interview to understand how stupid and ignorant the white man has become!!!!

Increadible!!! hard to believe!!!

Anonymous:

Hi Amy,

So what's your real age, you nosy American?

I know most American men can't even look at their girlfriends' driver license. That means they don't even know what age of the woman they marry too.

And also, if you see me naked, you probably think I am 14, and if you look at my face then you may think I am 26, but my passport says I am 35.

So are you telling me that my government changed my age?

c'mon, my sweet babe!

Age doesn't matter, you still want to go out with me?:)

Amy:

Too tough on the Chinese, that's a joke, they lied about their female gymnasts ages and no one got tough on them for that. Their medals ought to be striped from them.

China past the glitz of these Olypmpic weeks is still a violator of basic human rights of those of their cittizens and neighbors. Is Tibet free yet?! They jailed all of their dissidents before the games.

Of course, the smarmy and vacuous MSM suspends all reality when they "cover" over-hyped sports events held in totalitarian places. It's disgusting watching the NBC suck-ups spin China.

What funny...:

In the history of Olympics we know "the first" is calculated by the number of Gold Medals. It's funny to see the "MEDAL COUNT" with United States at the first place... what stupid!

frak:

The essential spirit of the Olympics is that the world can come together for a big party, like the World Cup. It's vulnerable to hijack , like Hitler's Berlin Olympics, and the patriotic fervor is exploitable for war incitement. The poor of the host city often suffer from the construction projects, due to diverting of funds from the public space and often being displaced from their homes, and the cities are often left with huge debts and architectural pink elephants. All the world wants to party together in life though, even if warfare and the ugly human traits often surface. Budwieser tastes better when the whole world is partying.

David Lee:

The standard for human freedom and dignity is different in the eyes of different people. For the people from the countries that have struggled on the line of poverty, having rice in their bowls is often defined as human rights. This is the "powerful" argument used by Chinese government, and subsequently other developing countries as a defense for their brutality and suppressing of the people seeking freedom of speech, freedom of association, and freedom of religion.

Unfortunately, those people forgot, those countries are in poverty and war and depression, in many cases, because they lost or never had the freedom to begin with. Take China for example. The chaos and suffering lasted from 1949 till 1990 was simply caused by the totalitarian government. Same can be said for most of the African countries.

My comment to those people who praise the "Chinese miracle" is

"Do not forget to use your mouth to voice your opinions because you have rice, a lot of them, stuffed in it!"

Raoul:

brittle pride, so insecure

Somali:

The Terrorist They Call "president" Is The Enemy Of Humanity!!

To Anonymous

Yes I have seen their movie "Titanic." In it, they go down in a panic. And you are right they don't know how to be graceful or human. They don't know the meaning of the word "dignity". For them language is there to be MISUSED and ABUSED!!!They abuse their language and anyone who is in the path of their profanity-leden disgracefullness!!

Do you notice how when they talk even in what they consider "polite" talk, their language is full of unnecessary profanity?

George:

Can Americans try to understand something different from them?

"A nation that can assemble 2,000 perfectly synchronized drummers "
Do you Americans have any problems with that?
This is how we do it! This is the way we like!
Show respect!

Anonymous:

There was a very funny name calling for Americans that posted on John Pomfret's China Soccer page:

I hereby paste here for all people to have a laugh on the poor Americans.

______________________________________________
Someone one said:
"Even Europeans describe Americans are extremely loud, unnaturally fat, and shamelessly embarrassing. And they sometimes think that those Americans cannot even solve their own overweight or obesity problem, how the hell they are going to solve the world issues?" I think they've got a point:)
_______________________________________________
Ha Ha HA Ha HA:)

Please paste it on your blog and email this to your 5 friends and have them to email to others, this maybe the best name calling joke for Americans:)

wooddoo:

Pettiness in the West.

The opening ceremony was spectacular. Lip-synch and all the negative stuff blown way out of proportion cannot change the fact that the Games so far have been extremely successful. The Water Cube produces hundreds of thousands of new records every day. And the Bird's Nest just witness a 9.69 sec human miracle. The organization of the Games has been flawless, with funny incidents of course.

Sometimes it's hard not to think there's a western conspiracy to try to grasp every opportunity to demonize China and it's people. Chinese students in Germany are praying the Games end sooner because they're being driven crazy by the Nazi-ish anti-China and anti-Chinese coverage in German media.

But if people in the West are humans at all, they should be happy that the Games hosted in a nation with 1/5 humanity are successful. Even if you don't think the Chinese people are your friends, when you go to a party hosted by a stranger, you should have the basic decency to wish them luck rather than indulging in your schadenfreude.

Anonymous:

To Somali,

Have you seen their movie "Titanic" ?
They directed it, and they will go down, but never gracefully.

Anonymous:

To Please wake up, it is about market economy,

That is why, Jesus said:
"Even hookers and tax collectors can go to heaven, but politicians(hypocrites) and rich men can't."

In every country, all the politicians, medias, and greedy market robbers ruin their countries and the world.

Period.

Somali:

The Terrorist They Call "president" Is The Enemy Of HUmanity!!!!

This is pure, unmitigated jelousy. You, the white man, is jelous of China. China is doing fantastic. The world is looking towards China now. The alure of the w3est has dimmed permanently.

Instead of being bitter and hateful about your falling position in the world and your eventual down fall, why don't you try going down more gracefully. This way, you might survive the fall and retain a bit of your dignity and hunmanity.

But this is great. The world has been suffocating under the white man's domination. China brings a breath of fresh air. It is NEW. It is EXCITING and Chinese business is benefitting everyone!!

Anonymous:

---Should We Give China a Break?---

Only a proud American could write a title as this.
This title reveals the pride of American culture, the non-respectful attitude toward anyone?

According to John's title, a reader may understand that the attitude of USA toward the rest of the world.

It's like they American own China, and the World.

Should We Give China a Break?
Should We Give Iraq a Break?
Should We Give the World a Break?

Now the reader may know How American look at others from their high judging sit.

Should You Give Yourselves a Break, You Aggressive Americans?
Please Just Give Yourselves a Break, For the World!

Anonymous:

China invited the world to its doorstep, emptied 40 billion dollars out of its pockets, staged a spectacular theatrical extravaganza for the sake of sports, entertainment and national pride (or should I call it national vanity?), only to find itself face-to-face with a venomous Western press, loaded with ignorance, misinformation, racial bias, fully poised and ready to pounce, and to find the event itself being injected with political subjectivity, being twisted, bent and spun to fit a certain political agenda by a few. And one gentleman, in particular, was so inept as a human being as unable to recognize an act of basic human decency, but mistook it for a hair-raising ghost instead. There was such a time when Muslims were perceived to be such a ghost, and the fortune of a Muslim individual could rise and fall according to the daily press. An albino whale is just an albino whale, we need to stop being Captain Ahab.

Please wake up, it is about market economy:

Making comments on Chinese who do not have any say on how the country should be run by those, like the Western journalists, who are more often than not offended by a totalitarian government is indeed quite offensive to normal Chinese.

As a Chinese working in both Western countries and China for more than 20 years, I suggest we should not adopt the mentality of "If you do not have bread, why not take creamy cakes, stupid". Genetically speaking, all human beings are of more or less the same intelligence level. What differs is education and socialization.

I would like to suggest Westerner should be on the shoes of normal Chinese by getting to know that :
1. The totalitarian Chinese government can determine who must starve and who can be rich. Just look at how Google, Yahoo etc run their business in China.
2. Normal Chinese cannot change the political situation in China. They can only adapt themselves for the good of themselves or their families. So, no wonder why so many unscrupulous businessmen are more than ready to bend rules to get rich on one hand, and to queue up for a migration visa on the other while heralding patriotism.

For normal Chinese, you should know that:
1. Commenting on China has a market demand in Western journalism. How can you expect Western media and normal westerners will take a serious study on your Chinese history and socio-eonomical issues. I also do not expect a normal Chinese to know the name of the present USA vice president though he finally found the weapon of mass destruction by shooting his friend accidentally in a hunting game.
2. Admittedly, majority Chinese live under indecent or even corrupt administration. But, you should know that Western politicians get their votes also through series of promises, if not lies. To me, it is also a kind of corruption, i.e. a corruption committed openly by voters and votees, of course in a civilised manner.

After all, it is all about market economy, i.e. getting the resources or recognition to lead a good living. What makes human beings transcend is the ability of critical thinking. I do not think Jesus or Buddha would like to hear the argument based on mutual discrimination.

Matrixman:

"A nation that can assemble 2,000 perfectly synchronized drummers has clearly staked its claim as the world's assembly line." ====================================================================================================

Yes, the assembly line moving as fast as it can to put out exports to USA with an insatiable appetite for cheap imports.

Jacob:

America's corrupt, lying, criminal scum of a government is no better than China's. We just have a more effective propaganda machine.

David Lee:

How do you define "tough" or "break"? In the face of human rights and fighting for human dignity and freedom, no one has any right to define the boundary (for break).

China is known for its brutality and ignorance on human rights. Even up to this very moment, they still behave the same - check how many people were restricted and forced to stop their live in Beijing for the sake of the Olympic Games. Check how many people are suffocated in voicing their opinions openly and formally. Check how many independent news media are out there in China... We can go on and on for ever. Do not be fooled by a sport event, even that is at a heavy cost of people's freedom and rights.

China has changes tremendously in the past 30 years, part of which is due to the pressure and efforts made by the west.

Engaging China does not mean encouraging China to do what the government is used to do.

Jaime Feez:

Having been in and out of China since 1993, as an American businessman living,working, and retired in Europe, and being experienced in foreign affairs and years of cross-cultural life in three continents outside North America, I have long told my journalist friends: there are two Chinas that I know; the one I read about in Western media and one I experience when I visit there and watch of their explosive modernization and economy. The descriptions are like two different planets. Now our media even curses a system that allows little boys and girls to parade with their heros. Oh yes, and media coming from a nation where substitution of reality in our national entertainment has been perfected by Hollywood, we criticize others for a slight use of this 50 year old habit in our own nation. I think we are stunned by the progress of China, clearly the fastest upgrade of the economic quality of life in any nation in history and still moving. Visiting China is to see people whose parents, grandparents, themselves and their children never lived better in 7000 years of history. Poor things, that they can't meet the standards of our media in presenting entertainment at the Olympic games...a real threat to our system! Ha! Envy and intellectual trite!

Malachy McAnespie:

Esentially we are trying to rationalise childish mean mindedness and Churlishness

DocChuck:

The American Politician was walking down a path and he came across a Mangshan pitviper. The viper was getting old. He asked, "Please Mr. American, can you take me to the birdsnest? I hope to see the games one last time before I die." The American answered "No Mr. pitviper. If I pick you up, you'll bite me and I'll die." The viper said, "No, I promise. I won't bite you.

Just please take me up to the birdsnest." The American Politician thought about it and finally picked up that Mangshan pitviper and took it close to his chest and carried it up to the birdsnest.

They sat there and watched the games together. The games were so beautiful. Then after the games ended the viper turned to the American and asked, "Can I go home now? I am tired, and I am old."

The American Politician picked up the viper and again took it to his chest and held it tightly and safely. He came all the way down from the birdsnest, holding the snake carefully and took it to his home to give him some food and a place to sleep. The next day the viper turned to the American and asked, "Please Mr. American Politician, will you take me back to my home now? It is time for me to leave this world, and I would like to be at my home now." The American felt he had been safe all this time and the snake had kept his word, so he would take it home as asked.

He carefully picked up the snake, took it close to his chest, and carried him back to the woods, to his home to die. Just before he laid the Mangshan pitviper down, the snake turned and bit him in the chest.

The American Politician cried out and threw the snake upon the ground. "Mr. Mangshan pitviper, why did you do that? Now I will surely die!" The snake looked up at him and grinned, "You knew what I was when you picked me up."

Anonymous:

jbe:
NO.

It is impossible to be too tough on corrupt, lying, poisoned food, and poisoned medicine exporting, criminal leaders of the Communist Standing Committee.

They are corrupt, lying, criminal scum and deserve the shame they bring upon China to be their's alone.

I feel sorry for the ordinary Chinese person. They are oppressed by corrupt gangs of criminal liars.

=========================================
This guy gets it!

And I am an ordinary Chinese person. I hate the corruption but I also fear a sudden collaps of C.C.P. Too collective, hmmm?

Actually, what Confusion stands for is EDUCATION not HOSPITALITY, I think Zhang YiMou he knows it. He is just a cooperative artist. Thousands more creatives guys are just not allowed to be in the public.

And it is so funny Western people likes him. Who else is fan of him here?

Peter:

Post American world,

You use my comments on restraining the state in the domestic sphere and willfully apply them -- in a way I never intended -- to the international realm. I can only conclude that you do so in order to distract attention from the question I originally posed.

It is the intellectual dishonesty of your posts, your transparent twisting and turning, that is disturbing. The disagreements regarding the strengths and weaknesses of various forms of governance, aggressive conduct in the international sphere, etc., are much less disturbing than the elemental inability to confront a question head-on that we see in your posts.

As I stated, there is no "enforceable law" in the international realm. Not for the US, not for China or any other country. "Enforceable", again, is the key. The international institutions you cite -- products of the post-WW2 Western order -- are nascent, weak, and are currently pale shadows of the institutions that exist in the domestic political realm. Gradually, one hopes, these international institutions will gain greater bite. And the outgoing Bush administration aside, the US has been a leading proponent of these institutions.

Funny, you are willing to discuss international institutions, yet are singularly resistant to even addressing the original question regarding domestic institutions in China. Stop running from the question, please.

frak:

It was perfectly logical from the neoconvicts point of view to have US/Israeli proxy puppet Georgia attack Russia on Opening Day of the Olympics. Neocons thrive on bringing out the worst qualities in humans: war, murder, torture, abuse, underhanded graft and corruption. Unity of Humanity is anethema towards their agenda: war and violent abuse of their fellow man is the bread and butter from which they've thrived. Humans mean little to them, except in so far as they can make a profit for the neocon elites, hence they have their hands in all the corrupt human evils from which a profit can be turned: War-profiteering, drug dealing and mafias, gov't contract ripoffs, you name it, if its an anti-human source of profit, they do it. Humans are capable of the whole range of possible behaviours, its part of the adaptable nature which has helped us to survive. Something unifying like the Olympics poses a serious threat to the Neoconvicts..They need to bring out the worst (see 9-11)..

John:

Thank you for pointing out how downright stupid people have been in their reporting. Between you and me, I think china scares them.

Blueskies:

Shawn said;
...taking every opportunity to pick on China or Chinese. .... How could a nation that expounds on everyman being equal alllowed legalized slavery and genocide against native Americans?
Even today, racism aginst Blacks and Hispanics and others are rampant and shrugged off by the majority of "ordinary white people?" Is the electory college democratic? Why does the USA not have a Clause in the consitution that specifically deals with the issue of "self determination" i.e., independence of a state or region within the union? Even the "evil empire" Soviet Union had one (that was the legal base for disintegration of Soviet Union). Afraid? How about Gitmo? How about CIA torture and kidnapping of people from the street in other nations (rule of law - end justfies means?). ...Americans can honestly examine their own behaviors and their off-hand racism and bigotry. Do white Americans treat people based on their appearance? If you read the comments left on USA Toay or WaPo, you can see the stark difference between those for Russia and those for China. Every little bit or piece about what happened in China the white Americans found not living up to American textbook standards was ridiculed often in racially tinted langauge - you would not see these for Russians - despite what they are doing now. Can you imagine what would happen if China does the same thing as Russia does?! The Chinese are being treated the way the Japanese were being treated in 1980s and early 1990s. The only way China and Chinese people can avoid these so-called "criticism" is genetically change their offspring appearance in the form of Northwestern Europeans!
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^
A individualist American replies-

Shawn, a few declared a social ideal, the rest of society took some time to accept or agree with it.
Liberals. like Jefferson and Patrick Henry expressed those idea's. Neither were at the Constitutional convention btw, no liberals at all. It took time for these concepts to spread throughout society. And most people had no votes at first, you had to have a certain minimum of property, and be a member in good standing in the right church. It was liberals like Andrew Jackson, Thomas Jefferson who advocated for democracy, that at least all free men should be allowed to vote, and by 1860 this was true in more places than not, specially in the 'west', though still not universal. This helped lead to the end of all slavery, as most common Americans were against it.
Slavery was a inherited institution imposed -mostly against our will- by the English monarchy. The end of slavery in the USA took another 70 or so years and a massive internal war.
I think the USA does deserve credit, along with Great Britain and France, for bringing about the destruction and ending of the horrible, worldwide slave trade that had existed since around 900 AD. China for example had been importing huge numbers of black slaves for 1000 years from east African ports to provide labor for Chinese mines and factories, since the 900's carried on Muslim transports. The modernising Chinese government outlawed slavery (about 1905?).
American society did not do genocide against the native American tribes. Certain nasty individuals did on their own some lousy actions, and they often got punished for it even if it took years. Few histories tell the whole story. Every history tells what most supports the bias of the historian. Did you know that as soon as the US had its first viable supply of smallpox serum, sent from England, Jefferson dispacthed Lewis and Clark to vaccinate all native Americans they could reach in what became our "Louisiana Purchase"? Major efforts, considering the resources and technology available, were made to help native tribes-people,
The US constitution does not allow sectional self determination, so no little ethnic group can set itself up as a separatist enclave, though many groups tried many times.(Exception- Native american reservations). All American citizens can live and participate politically in every community in America. Even native americans. Most do. Yes, we are different from some others in this. And yes, the electoral college selects our President, the Federal Government is republican not democratic, democracy in America is at the local level, regional maybe.
So far as I can see racism is universal. You got some incredibly racist and mean spirited Chinese, nasty, even evil some of them, who are harmonious brothers with other Chinese. And many Chinese who are the greatest, coolest people on the planet.

But this is just one individuals ignorant opinons.




Anonymous:

I don't mean to hate, but this has gotten slightly off point. Paid propaganda? Who cares if they are?

Simply put, I like the fact that Pomfret is taking advantage of the fact that he has extensive experience in China and it's increased limelight due to the Olympics.

I can see the argument that Brooks makes. As a government we protect the rights of the individual, in fact we make it a point to do so (9 of the 10 articles in the bill of rights deal with individual liberties, with another 4 amendments blatantly discussing the rights of the individual). While my knowledge of the structure of the Chinese government isn't the same as what I know of my own, these specific rights protecting the individual don't exist (or are not enforced). My personal view is that the Chinese government stresses the bigger picture in terms of government, not the individual.

As for Americans being group focused, what about the argument about the bowling league? The trend that Americans are withdrawing from group activities, such as bowling leagues in recent years?

I do agree on your thoughts regarding the Chinese schoolboy who pulled his classmates out of the ruble. I like to think he was put with Yao Ming as an example of what should be done in that situation. As for the example brought forth about the Australians who helped while the dozens of Chinese did nothing, what of the numerous instances in every single other country where everyone stood by, waiting for someone else to call 911. The Australians helping with the bus accident is a tribute to the individual Australians, not a slant against the Chinese people as a whole.

I like your Posts on China, though. It's a refreshingly different opinion in the media. Keep up the good work.

Citizen of the post-American world:

Peter: "Citizen of the post American world, there is no enforceable law in the international system that I know of, so power is relatively unrestrained (in my view...of course, others may differ). Does that answer your question regarding the US in the international sphere?"

It does not, I'm afraid.

Exist:

1. International law,
2. International conventions (e.g. the Geneva Conventions),
3. International charters (e.g. the UN Charter, charters of human rights and freedoms)
4. International accords (e.g. Indochina), treatises, agreements, etc.
5. International Court of Justice,
6. International tribunals on war crimes and crimes against humanity,
7. International organizations (e.g. the UN).

The fact the US elected lawlessness as its primary rule of conduct on the international scene, the fact that the US chose, repeatedly, not to be bound by the above, that it chose arrogantly to violate them, to ignore them, or that it has done everything to make them "irrelevant" (while insisting that they be made relevant and enforced for other nations, as well as for other people than it's own citizens -- e.g. its own political and military class)... is precisely what shows that there is not, in the US, "some system in place that prevents the abuse of power by the US state" on matters of foreign affairs.

Not that such systems cannot exist! Even barbarians have had such systems whereby abuse of power by the nation's leaders, e.g. in declaring war, could be prevented and did not go unpunished.

No such self-discipline exists in the US. Whatever may exist FORMALLY, with no practical impact to speak of, is of no interest whatsoever, except for some idle intellectual or pundit, possibly...

That you can honestly state (as you do) that "there is no enforceable law in the international system that you know of" is indicative of the utter contempt that system is held in by this country. It is part of that old Western world order being currently replaced by a true (holistic) World order.

In my opinion, we should mind first how we conduct ourselves with others and how we treat them.

We can, later, delve into how we treated and continue to treat each other, not in theory but in practise, within our own borders...

Anonymous:

I wonder why some certain people are flaxiating on China? Just out of the human being's pure universal love or some of them suffered a lot because of communists? what is the reason?

klyjdjj:

Replying to Anonymous on GDP.

China's GDP has always been the largest in most of human history. As late as in year 1840, China's GDP is about 1/3 of worlds' total. The richest men on earth then living in the chinese souther port GuangZhou. When his house was on a fire, the silver he owned was melted and the silver liquid covered the whole nearby street.

Then came those western gentlemen, and invasion, humiliation, colonization & etc..
Being rich and weak, china is an easy target, suffered 150 years, until 1949 when communist party drove all foreigners out. Then china suffered seclusion from international world.

Now those former bandits consider themselves as superior and would like to give us instruction on how to behave, how to think, how to speak. How funny and how resentful.

Basically speakingly, though I believe that many westerners do have good will about democracy, liberty, human rights & etc., but in the chinese people's psyche, westerners are not morally qualified to give such lecture.

We accept that your living is better than us, but still we will go our way.

rec:

When I read most of the comments, I almost get sick to my stomach. They represent a childish mentality of "my dad is bigger than yours". Clearly many don't think of Americans as being "individualistic" as most don't refer to themselves as an individual, but as "Americans". And often it is the context of "we" vs "them". It is not in the context that Phelps proved himself to be the best swimmer in this year's Olympics. But because of Phelp's individual victories you think that makes America greater than China or any other country. The Olympics were intended to honor the athlete, but we have lost that perspective. We ignore the hard work that years of dedication it takes each individual athlete in the games, and instead we obese, lazy, Americans, who don't even bother to go to the polls to vote in national elections, seek to take pride in Phelp's work and effort and the fact that he happens to live in the same part of the world that we live in.

Chinationreport:

There is at least a lot of passion on this matter. Maybe both sides can take a step back and think for a moment why there is so much animosity? To the American China-haters: What's the matter? Is it really because of human rights in China's own soil that bother you so much or is it because you have fear about China's rising? How much do you know about China? Why are you so concerned and worried? Let's say China really has problems with whatsoever, why is this your business? After all, China did not come here to the US to tell you how not to kill your local Indians, run your slaves in the south or polluting your cities during your own industrialization. You know what Chinese men did? They built railroads for you to connect your own continent! Google how your own people treated Chinese people in America. Chinese people did not ask for affirmative action to get even, instead, they worked harder... to get even. Here we are today! How about trying a new approach to treat Chinese: Try using some respect.
To the Chinese or those defending China: Do not get mad. I like the Great Man, Petty Man post. Continue to be Great Man. Let Petty Man get angry and stay ignorant, you are walking upwards, no need to compare those going downwards while refusing to look back and seeing themselves in the picture of the whole mountain. The peak is there for all of us. The difference is that: For some, it is still to come. For some other, it is bygone or soon to be. It is their loss if they just want to continue in that direction! The world dynamics have changed, but they refuse to adapt. What can you do?
From:
http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice

Anonymous:

Democrecy, human rights, etc... are luxuries of a rich country.

China's true challenges are;
- Creating 200,000 new jobs a week to keep people working
- feeding the ever growing populatoin on less land
- Polution, polution, plution. Water is an issue.
- Producing enough energy
- Education and health care
- Aging population

When the above are takin care of, then maybe resources will be allocated to the soft stuff.

Really:

Recently since the Olympis Ceremony Began I have read many reports about China. Yes, it is easy to report what Chinese are not good but it is not easy to report what Chinese are good. I think that Americans may find many problems from America as Chinese can find many problems from China. This world do not lack of problems but lack of solutions. If west people do not have good way to solve problems of east Asia, it will be a smart choice to give chance to Asians to solve their problems by themselves.

Anonymous:

"3. Poor and rich.
chinese population is 20% of gloable total, so before china's GDP reached 20% of world's total, we chinese consider ourselves as poor, 30% is well off, 40% canbe considered as rich."

The question is will China ever have 20% of the worlds GDP? Currently they have only 5%. $4 trillion of approx $80 trillion. The problem issues are;

- Growing more will create more pollution, over 1 million chinese die each year due to pollution. This will increase.
- Transport is getting more expensive and the manufacturing costs in China are getting more expensive, thus more manufacturing will go to Vietnam, Indonisia, India, Mexico, etc...
- Chinese do not spend enough yet to have a trully indipendent of trade economy, this is due to issues stemming from lack of pensions, security systems like health for elderly, etc... China is getting old fast and may not be able to deal with it with only $60 billion currently in government pensions and almost no employement pensions. Japan, US, Italy, etc.. have the same problem
- Food security. With only 7% of the worlds land and more natural disasters, last year for the first year China was a net exporter of food. That trend will only get worse as the population grows, habits change and land produce less.
- getting resources will become much more difficult in the future, that is why China is rushing to get its hands on African resources and Iran's oil, it is the only resources not spoken for. Between Canada, US, Brazil, Russia, Australia and the EU, you have approx 60% of the worlds net resources, Iron, Natural gas, oil, coal, water, crops, etc.. I mean net, meaning they could have more of some and less in others. Even oil, Canada has the 2nd largest proven reserve, Russia 7th, Brazil 9th, US 11th. It adds up. Add to that the fact the US and EU companies own/control another 20% of the worlds net resources, that adds up to approx. 80% of the worlds resources under Western countrol. That does not leave much for everyone else. With dwindling resources countries will start to ration and become more protectionist. China will see its ability to obtain resources decline. The only way it has been able to continue is that they are manufacturing for the west, so the west sells the raw materials. If China stops manufacturing for the west, so will the resources be diverted.


Above are just a few points, leaving many other issues facing the future.

Are you really good for us?:

No way until WWIII,will you like it?
Or luckily,we Chinese would have enough Chinese-Americans and fight back to force the government to change.

Peter:
I don't know much about China, so maybe some people here can help me out: is there some system in place that prevents the abuse of power by the Chinese state? If so, can you please explain how it works?

Ben:

Pomfret, please stop this. This is the Post, not the People's Daily. China is the greatest menace of the century, and you're its greatest apologist/propagandist. Please step down and write for Xinhua.

vanlie:


@Autum :

why do chinese kill american tourist ? it just doesn't make sense.maybe you should interview a random american tourist in Beijing now ,and ask them what's their life there,how they feel like living there.

if we get infomation only from the media,it's easy to be fooled.

and,even if a certain tourist died in Beijing,there is a word "accident".how many people have been killed by americans?especially in colleges?

we cannot judge a country by one or two people's own actions,but the entire body.

Shawn in USA:

The closeted racist white men and few desperate white women are taking every opportunity to pick on China or Chinese. They started their arguments by assuming everything the U.S has done and the ideas it embraces is God-inspired therefore not subject to close scrutiny and criticism. How could a nation that expounds on everyman being equal alllowed legalized slavery and genocide against native Americans? Even today, racism aginst Blacks and Hispanics and others are rampant and shrugged off by the majority of "ordinary white people?" Is the electory college democratic? Why does the USA not have a Clause in the consitution that specifically deals with the issue of "self determination" i.e., independence of a state or region within the union? Even the "evil empire" Soviet Union had one (that was the legal base for disintegration of Soviet Union). Afraid? How about Gitmo? How about CIA torture and kidnapping of people from the street in other nations (rule of law - end justfies means?). Like China, the US of A has its own dirty laundry - it would be better if Americans can honestly examine their own behaviors and their off-hand racism and bigotry. Do white Americans treat people based on their appearance? If you read the comments left on USA Toay or WaPo, you can see the stark difference between those for Russia and those for China. Every little bit or piece about what happened in China the white Americans found not living up to American textbook standards was ridiculed often in racially tinted langauge - you would not see these for Russians - despite what they are doing now. Can you imagine what would happen if China does the same thing as Russia does?! The Chinese are being treated the way the Japanese were being treated in 1980s and early 1990s. The only way China and Chinese people can avoid these so-called "criticism" is genetically change their offspring appearance in the form of Northwestern Europeans!

James:

anonymous.

Go such your .ock,
YOU ARE POLLUTING THIS BLOG.

yOUR KIND BELONG IN THE RUBBISH BIN OF HISTORY BEFITTING ALL THE SORE LOSERS THAT YUR ARE.

Blueskies:

Lets see, in theory at least;

Individualists see themselves as loners against the universe, and everybody is a rival and competitor for everything, and work for themselves.

Socialists see themselves as part of a large extended family, everybody is a brother/sister cooperating for mutual good, and they work for the greater good of the community besides their personal advancement.

Where things get screwed up is when the bulk of the population is socialist, but the leadership class is individualist...
In America I think we want our leaders to be Socialists...yet we push individualism for the general population...which worked fine until the industrial age, then we discovered socialism and modern America was created with public schools and other socialist systems.

What do you think? I see all kinds of paradox's in the way we lives versus what we say.

Give China a break? We only give breaks to pervieved underdogs.

PatrickInBeijing:


Let's reframe the question. Instead of "Should We Give China a Break", perhaps the question should be "Should We Treat China the Same Way We Treat Our Own Country" in terms of fairness and balance in coverage?

Oh Darn!!! I forgot. "We" (the American Main Stream Media (MSM) propagandized the war in Iraq, the war in Afghanistan, and now the Russia/Georgia conflict.

Sigh. So, I guess it is really unfair to complain. The WAPO is only doing to China what it does to all other nations that dare to diverge from the Bush Administration line on all things. It is only doing to China what it regularly does to anyone left of center, to minorities, to environmentalists, to feminists, and to anyone who ain't rich.

The only real question left is why I was so surprised?? Dumb, dumb, dumb.

Grace :

Well,it is just two different kinds of lifestyle.
Here,I have to point:Lifestyle of countries.
Nothing about daily life of humans.
You can choose individul or collective.
US chose to develop individul and
China emphasized collective.
But when it comes to nation matter,for example,Iraq war.
Any country would be collective,right?

klyjdjj:

To: KAJM;

Definitely the Chinese has their point of view --- a value-impoverished one. After '4000 thousand years', you guys still have a lot of growing up to do

"Definitely the Chinese has their point of view"
So you agreed that chinese has their point of view, that is very good. the basic for further discussion.

A value-impoverished one. Let me say: it is a western-value impoverished one. This is quite the fact. But please be reminded western value is not the only value in the world. And it is not the value that everybody must follow without questioning.

"After '4000 thousand years", yes, all over the chinese history, chinese people developed their own system and value and civilization in their own way, and will continue so into future.

"you guys still have a lot of growing up to do", if you mean the growing up in the field of western value like democracy, freedom, equality, human rights & etc., then it is absolutely true that chinese has lot of growing up to do. But I am not sure whether chinese people will decide to grow in that direction or whatever direction, although I myself personlly would like to see it happening.

Actually, those concept were imported to China only around 1900. The chinese borrowed those words mostly from Japan, as japan uses chinese character also. So you see, those concept is very young in China.
Let me give another example, the very concept of Nation is imported to china around 1900, we chinese didn't call ourselves as "Zhong Guo", meaning that nation of china. before that time, the political entity was dynasty, people don't have concept of nation. Dr. Sun Yat Sun coind the phrase.
Let me give another example of different culture resutling in different way of thinking: the so called cheating of the girl of olympic ceremony.
She is not singing there, but the voice is from another girl who is not as cute as her.
Western media called it as a cheating, which for chinese is really something out of no where. Typical chinese thinking for this is like this: everybody would like to take part for this ceremony, but the girl had a cute face don't have the voice, and the voice good girl has no cute face, so we make combination so as to achieve a better presentation. So more people got the chance. Why doesn't any one asking that voice girl whether she is happy or not?
It is just that simple, cheating is doing something without admitting, but chinese people never menat to hide the fact. the organization committe memeber made this fact public because he want to thank the voice girl, her contribution shall not be forgotten.
Westerners think that it is very cruel for the voice girl. But this is not so. My daughter is 4 years old, and I always told her that she is just plain looking and must work hard at school in future. Being not cute is not her fault and nobody shall feel guilty, it is just a fact. If you hide the fact from a girl, you are cheating. If you told a plain looking girl that she is cute, then you are actually hurting the girl for making her have a wrong self assesment.
See this is the cultural differnce.

There are many people in this world, each is very different. A metaphor: you shall not apply Newton's physic law to quantum world. Science, art, religion is all way of understanding world. You cannot say which one is correct, they are just different.

So Let me repeat, you got your own ways, and we have ours.

feng2wang:

You are being called "foreign devils" by the Chinese for a reason. Human beings respect each other. You are a devil because you lack the most basic human quality--respect for others, other nations, and other ways of life.

feng2wang:

David B's article is so far the least imperialistic of all comments on China!
In the US, the liberals are more condescending and of course more foolish in their views of the world.

kajm:

klyjdjj:

"1. Independence.
It means no outer interference from any body else whehter they mean good or bad. For example, Japan is not exactly an independent country, because US army stationed in japanese land.

2. Internal affairs.
Even a government kills its own citizen ruthlessly, like sadly happened in some African countries, it is still internal affaris and shall not be interfered by other countries.

3. Poor and rich.
chinese population is 20% of gloable total, so before china's GDP reached 20% of world's total, we chinese consider ourselves as poor, 30% is well off, 40% canbe considered as rich.

4. Good government
A good government in chinese standard is a government that can provide enough food for everybody, and can let people have hope of better life. If you survey the 4000 years history of china, you see the fact that in most times, china is in starvation, sometimes severe, sometimes not so severe. China nowadays is feeding 20% of global population on 7% of arable land of Earth.

...

But don't believe you are chosen by God to take the burden of white men. We chinese don't need it. You have your way, we have ours."

Yeah, and your way has far less value than the American democratic way.

We work to achieve self-government, rather than just asking to be taken care of.

Our idea of independence rest on the notion of legitimate government whose rights are rooted in protecting the people's rights. I guess all this right's talk is too complicated for you. After all recognizing rights means taking responsibility for them, and we all know how good the Chinese are at responsibility.

"Internal affair" in Chinese translates into "We are not answerable to anyone else" in English. In the West, claims to 'internal affairs' are answerable to standards of legitimacy (something that is earned, not merely taken).

Definitely the Chinese has their point of view --- a value-impoverished one. After '4000 thousand years', you guys still have a lot of growing up to do.

Autum :

Vanlie:

"Chinese don't kill people.If you hold so,please offer proof."

------------------------------
Chinese killed an American tourist during the Olmpyics.

Anonymous:

Please note that this post is written in a spirit of equality and with hope for improvement as well as responsibility for all.

Collectivism breeds insecurity & mistrust. It's why the Chicoms are so adamant about their public messages of strong unity - to counter those trends at least in perception. Nothing like a good show of force to counter the actual lack of social influence.

I love how discussions of China often turn into accusations against the western world. Evasion. In China, culturally speaking, being "right" is far more desirable than being truthful. Hence, unbalanced, ill-supported responses to criticism with personal attacks or spurious conclusions. The well-thought responses really stand out if you can find them.

I wish I had a kuai for every time I heard the phrase "Foreigners are racist" in China - where the world is elegantly divided in two clear pieces. Chinese and Foreign. I must admit I cannot represent the world at large very successfully, so I do apologize.

The fact is, there is a disconnect in China, between perception and reality. Thought more often ascribes inferiority to difference. It may assume racial superiority or at least, discrimination in all things. It accuses what it espouses most: arrogance, greed, jealousy, violence, and injustice. If it is not endorsed by the authority, it doesn't even exist, really.

China's best and brightest have little power for influence. They express their futility and frustration, and do as they may.

Racism in China is as widespread as it is unexamined. It's not that nobody's perfect. Non-Chinese are simply not valid, it's as simple as that. Oh, not to your face. Just when they are talking about you in your presence. Which is...often. Nearly constant. And always derogating, even when being complimentary. "Oh you are up so early for a foreigner!" Outgroup negativity bias is shall we say, well-entrenched and not going anywhere for a goodly while.

Difference is never going to really be accepted in China. Which, in my humble opinion, reflects not a desire to be part of an international community at all, but to eventually define and dominate that community. But I can't read the future. It's just what I see today, (every day). I can tell you this, my business students mock the business cultures of other countries' companies. They do NOT wish to learn how to function in them. The Chinese way (not meritocracy) is the only way, period, and all else is bemusingly absurd. Then they cry victim for not being given positions of power in foreign companies, because "foreign companies obviously have racist policies against the Chinese". May I suggest they accuse their own mindsets.

Being a victim is such a delicious rationale for anything you want. I remember an episode of Homocide: Life in the Streets when Richard Belzer asked a submissive why she liked being locked up. She said, when I'm bound, I'm free.

The thing about China is, cohesion is built on race and external social pressure, and it continues by people not accepting responsibility.

With freedom comes responsibility. And as someone once said, we all get the government we deserve.

klyjdjj:

to make better communication between americans and chinese, it is of importance to understnad the cultural difference. So let me, as a native chinese, explain the meaning of some concept in chinese cultural context.
1. Independence.
It means no outer interference from any body else whehter they mean good or bad. For example, Japan is not exactly an independent country, because US army stationed in japanese land.
2. Internal affairs.
Even a government kills its own citizen ruthlessly, like sadly happened in some African countries, it is still internal affaris and shall not be interfered by other countries.
3. Poor and rich.
chinese population is 20% of gloable total, so before china's GDP reached 20% of world's total, we chinese consider ourselves as poor, 30% is well off, 40% canbe considered as rich.
4. Good government
A good government in chinese standard is a government that can provide enough food for everybody, and can let people have hope of better life. If you survey the 4000 years history of china, you see the fact that in most times, china is in starvation, sometimes severe, sometimes not so severe. China nowadays is feeding 20% of global population on 7% of arable land of Earth.

Amercans is in a affluent society and have been superpower for so many years, and tends to be arrogant. Yes, americans shall be proud of themselves and even entitled to a little bit arrogance.

But don't believe you are chosen by God to take the burden of white men. We chinese don't need it. You have your way, we have ours.

Wills:

Comic Book Guy:

I hope Micheal Phelps continues to shove America's superiority in the faces of the Chinese and the rest of the world.

I bet Michael Phelps can defeat a whole army of their cheating 12 year old gymnasts.
===================================

Wow,US men's 4x400 relay team stripped of Sydney gold 2000 Olympics for doping. And also that famouse female sprinter Jones with so many gold medals,wow.

I have to admire U.S high-tech drug is so hard to be detected. That is why Chinese are not the matching rival definitely.

Anonymous:

The western logic, I guess, is like this:
Chinese government is led by communist party, communist party is evil, so the government is evil. This government will suppress the chinese people. The chinese people don't have freedom, no democracy. So the people shall be very unsatisfied and shall want to fight back.
So, when they noticed that chinese people are pretty satisfied with government nowadays, then they concluded that those chinese people must be brainwashed. If somebody from china says good for china government in foreign website, then those guys must be government agents, or hired by the government.
If I am not wrong, then this logic is really laughable.

klyjdjj:

Why so many americans believe that chinese citizen living in mainland china cannot visit foreign website?
I am living in Fuzhou City, Fujian Province, mainland china, and I am expressing my opinion here.
You don't see too many chinese comments from china is due to the language barrier. Most chinese just can't speak English.

W:

Just take a look at the front page WaPo piece,
"The Justice Department has proposed a new domestic spying measure that would make it easier for state and local police to collect intelligence about Americans, share the sensitive data with federal agencies and retain it for at least 10 years."

We are sliding across the slippery slope so fast.
We should be spending more time getting our house
in order if we want to be able to continue having these discussions.
W

Anonymous:

--Meyerson noted that during the parade of athletes China's flag bearer, Yao Ming, was accompanied by a 9-year-old boy who dug two classmates out of the rubble of the Sichuan earthquake. When asked by NBC why he did it, the boy said "he was a hall monitor and that it was his job to take care of his schoolmates," Meyerson wrote, adding "that answer may tell us more than we want to know."--

Gosh.. what a rubbish journalism..

Anonymous:

Just compare one fact,
1.2 billion Han, every we go in world we are in peace, most media always take on us like having a cake, even Han protest in western world, always peaceful.
2.5 million Tibetan, and only a few outside, just look at their protest, never peaceful, there is always brawls, throw stones, and all those violence they do.
And most Han don't hold religion, those they claim they practice Buddhism. Then how come their protest always ends in a bar fight?

1: there are not 1,2 billion Han. there are 900 Millions Han.(most enthusiaistic count)

2: there are 10 Million ethnical Tibetans in PRC.

3: please kill yourself

Anonymous:

True, if Han ever killed Tibetan, that would not be enough # of Tibetan to kill.

One fact, that during Mao's reign, over 20M Han died directly or indirectly by the political movements and 3 year starvation.

If CCP ever wanted a ethnic cleansing, the world would never have chance to see those monks throw rocks at the police, in fact, there would not even be monks in Lhasa, just like other Han cities in China, that 90% temples were destroyed and all the monks were forced to abandon Buddhism during 10 years culture revolution, only Tibetan Buddhism were preserved by special protection of CCP in China that time.

Like Dalai himself said: "Truth will reveal in the end."

There are currently two type of Tibetan, one who live in China, and other live in India and other places of the world. And most of Tibetan separatists in west are second generation of Tibetan, which means they are the citizen of other countries. Some of them never even been to Tibet.
Only a few were dispelled by Chinese government that don't want to lock them up, and refuse to let them in China, like Dalai.

But I know some Tibetan, who grew up in Tibet, speak Tibetan and sing Mandarin pop songs, and they hold same dislike about Chinese government corruption, but speak against separation. And they don't even speak to those Tibetan Separatists in school or class, but party with Han.

Just like ABCs don't talk to Chinese immigrant students.

And some Tibetan hate Dalai Lama, there are 40% Tibetan don't worship Dalai, but Dalai's monks controlled most Tibet region, especially Lhasa, and before 1950, anyone who did not worship Dalai, would also be tortured by his monks, and if that person He was royal, he would lose all his title, even his sons and children would become slave.

If anyone don't believe this, ask any old Tibetan.

I am Han. I used to roommate with a Tibetan from China, and another from India who used to live next door, and every time the Indian Tibetan held me to load on me with his bullshts, my roommate jumped in for rescue, and they don't even talk to each other, they didn't like each other.

Just compare one fact,
1.2 billion Han, every we go in world we are in peace, most media always take on us like having a cake, even Han protest in western world, always peaceful.
2.5 million Tibetan, and only a few outside, just look at their protest, never peaceful, there is always brawls, throw stones, and all those violence they do.
And most Han don't hold religion, those they claim they practice Buddhism. Then how come their protest always ends in a bar fight?

Jesus said: "Look at the fruits, one shall judge the tree."

It is very clear.

mtlyorel:

Brooks does have a good and valid point. Pomfret of course conveniently ignores the fact that Brooks talked about China from a pan-East Asian perspective. He notes that these East Asian nations all share certain characteristics of collectivism.

Here is the interesting point. Characteristically, Chinese is far more similar to the Americans than their Korean or Japanese counterparts. (More than enough ink has been spilled on this thesis and a quick google search will prove it.)

Pomfret of course agrees with this assertion with the limited examples of individualism he witnessed in China.

Ironically, the Chinese will be the first to admit that collectivism is very much alive and well in China, since it is a social conditioning that exists very early on in Chinese children. Collectivism should not be confused with unity or sense of unity. The biggest complaint about Chinese people by the Chinese themselves has to do with the lack of spirit of co-operation and selflessness.

Conversely, with all the talk of American individualism and independence spirit, anyone who has encountered Americans outside of the US will refute this fact: Americans band together as a collective entity more than any other nationals outside of the US.

All of this talk boils down to one very simple desire: the goal to get the job done well as a group and put aside insignificant personal pettiness and interests.

Anyone watching the OG will no doubt see this displayed in full by the Chinese and American teams, if not by all the participating teams.

Comic Book Guy:

I hope Micheal Phelps continues to shove America's superiority in the faces of the Chinese and the rest of the world.

I bet Michael Phelps can defeat a whole army of their cheating 12 year old gymnasts.

Johnny Lunchbox:

Another superb article Mr. Pomfret. You always a point of view on China that everyone in the States tends to miss. Your, also, tends to make the most sense.

I especially like you bashing on Meyerson's piece. That guy is an absolute idiot.

Independent:


The comments by many show their very limited knowledge of history and political science, as well as current events. This is hardly surprising as the majority of Americans do not know who is the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court or can name both of their Senators.

Many people do not seem to understand the difference between an authoritarian government and a dictatorship. Even many dictators, such as Mussolini, had far from absolute power, having to share some power with the King, Vatican, military and other fascist politicians.

The Communist Chinese have had a collective leadership more than being ruled by a single dictator during most of China's history since 1949. Mao lost much of his authority after the disastrous so-called Great Leap Forward. Unfortunately his very misguided and cruel Cultural Revolution was an attempt for him to regain close to absolute power.

The person who said the Chinese Communists killed more people than the Nazis is very wrong. Perhaps she is confusing the Japanese with the Chinese.

A lot of people, including president Bush throw around the word "democracy," without appearing to know what democracy actually means. Bush was not democratically elected nearly eight years ago.

A truly functioning democracy, as defined by many of the leading founding fathers, requires voters to participate in the electoral process, as well as keeping informed of current events, two qualifies quite lacking in over half of the voters in this country.

Bush probably more than any other president has seemed to belittle our system of checks and balances, which the founding fathers considered essential to prevent excessive power from accumulating in one branch government or person.
Many authors and people believe the Bush-Cheney administration has increased powers of the executive branch at the expense of constitutional powers of the legislative and judicial branches.
The founding fathers envisoned the impeachment process as a remedy for such attempted abuses of power. However, the vast majority of the Democrats in Congress have been too politically meek to pursue impeachment.

Vanlie:

@Maryann:

Firstly,I'd like say it's great that you care about people's lives,but it's a pity that you've obviously been fooled by specific evil-aimed false reports.

Remember those pics showing chinese army hitting or killing Tibetans?That's fake!The guys that are hitting people are not Chinese,some are from Nepal and other districts.And why?You can figure it out yourself.And the truth is most Tibetans live happily in China,while on the other hand,others living abroad are facing dangers.

Chinese don't kill people.If you hold so,please offer proof.

Anonymous:

To zqll,

Three feet ice does not freeze in one night;
Thousand mile journey is walked through each step;
Ten years to grow a strong tree;
One hundred year to educate a persons;

How long did God walk with Moses?

How long takes 1.3 Billion China to develop perfect?

How long did US develop to now? How many Natives, Whites, Blacks, and others died for USA to grow a democracy government?

Even healing a sickness needs time?

Who the hell you think you are? God!

We are Chinese, not superman!

You want to see superman? Go watch your NBC,
Micheal Phelps American Micheal Phelps American Micheal Phelps American Micheal Phelps American Micheal Phelps ....

Okay! We get it! The Whole World Gets IT!

zqll:

As long as the Chinese government or any government denies its people free elections, a free press, freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of association, etc. it will never be seen as anything more than a dictatorship by many in the free world.

That some in the US media do not see this now and in the past explains why millions of innocent people have been murdered world wide. That is why people like Brooks, who would have sanctioned the "progressive," scientifically advanced and "collectivist" society of nazi Germany in the 30s, share the blame for many of the tragedies that occurred in the 20th Century.

They are traitors to the human race.

Anonymous:

To Maryann,

My dear love, you mistake about where is the world stage now?

In China.

And your guys are doing your bashing job, but a lots of silver and bronze medalists of your media, not a good performance, won't be good results:)

And stop holding our government for the bad deeds they did 30 years ago, don't let your anger and hatred remain on you before sundown.

there is another day, and another world.

Anonymous:

As a Chinese, I would agree with my government that don't allow those Americans roam around in China with absolute freedom, because they may not have control of their huge eating habits and at end they blame us for their gigantic butt.

Our 14yr looked like girls kicked their American butt, I would say Awesome! it is good revenge for me who suffered the most in American women's bed,
"oh my God! my teenage son is bigger than you".
So am I a fourteen year old also? sht!

But, I would like to see Chinese have our own rights to report about our corrupted officials.

chinationreport:

It is a delight to see there are so many bloggers, from both East and West, that have begun to see things from China's perspective. I do believe Olympics provided a great platform to continue this dialog.

Let me be clear: I am NOT brainwashed by CCP. I spent over 20 years in China, almost equal amount of years in the West! When I was in my youth and full of hot blood, I complained about CCP and China all the time, just like many of my generation. I hated it just as a child sometimes said he/she hated everything else in life... But the Western reporters must understand two things and they have responsibility to understand them in order to report with a fair and balanced view:

1. All those people that suffered from Cultural Revolution or have seen others suffer, they have matured into a generation being capable of making judgments based on history, present and future. Whether these people now reside in the UK, China, or US, the majority of them tend to agree to each other. They arrive at an independent conclusion that China's progress is real and they are proud. They want to leave Chinese government alone to do their job and they don't want the west to impose on China. Ironically, the ones living in the west are much more outspoken against the west, simply because they realized the so-called free press in the West is not free of biases, especially when it comes to China!! Do I need to give any example? I live in the US and am fed up with all the China bashing!!! No CCP tells me to be angry at China bashing. You must be blind or brainwashed by whomever to believe otherwise.

2. The young generation born and grown up after China had started reform are jewels of the country. They move me to tears!! Their innocence, their pride, their free spirit, their drive and ambition!! They are the future of China. They grew up without any luggage from the past. And why should they? Before the Tibet event, the earthquake, the Olympics, the older generation was worried thinking that this new generation is completely materialistic and totally influenced by the West and may not care to carry the torch of Chinese tradition. How delightful it was to find out that we were wrong!! They are so proud of their country, their origin, their tradition that they would do anything to defend China. What is amazing is that it is especially true for those living outside of China. Look at all the posts, youtube videos, their protests! They, like their parents, their grandparents, stand firm to tell the West: Leave us alone to finish our journey. We can work together but don't tell us what to do!! We never told Britain how to run your industry and coal mines when your country was covered in smoke...We never told you when and how to get out of India. We never told USA when and how to stop slavery. You continued your journey in your perfection of your union. You are still doing so. Why wouldn't you allow us!

These young people are not brainwashed and I am proud of them.

Why does the West believe that the West owns the truth of humanity and human rights? Why does the West believe that the Western way is the only way for China to prosper? Why does the West believe all Chinese are brainwashed when they come out defending their country and yes their government?

Shame on you!! Ignorance is the first step to destroy oneself or a country. You can continue to be so ignorant or you can wake up and start a dialog with some respect to the 1.3billion people!!

I even created a daily news website to inform the West about China from different and more balanced sources with the hope to span a way between China and YOU, everyone who cares to learn and understand.

Visit: http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice to have your one stop balanced news and views about China

Maryann:

Of course you're not being too tough. China is ruled by a party that has killed far more people than the Nazis did.

If they want to play on the world stage, they need to learn some lessons in ethics. All the deceit and cover-ups won't wash.

Why can't someone get to the towns where the underage gymnasts grew up, start asking questions there? Simple. Because no one is allowed to mention the name of those towns.

Stinks to high heaven. Sue the IOC for being complicit in these frauds!

Zhang Fan:

@Peter:

1. Local congress is directly elected by local people. Local congress then elect the national congress, which theoretically holds the highest power.

2. Theoretically the legal system is independent, and is only responsible to the national and local congress.

3. Officials have term and age limits. Their selection is subject to the congress' ratification, and sometimes but not always, subject to opinion polls.

4. Ministry of supervision and National Bureau of Corruption Prevention monitor the officials

5. All state and local administrative decisions may theoretically be overturned by lawsuits. Some administrative decisions, such as price for public facilities, are now subject to public hearing and consultation.

6. Media, which are all state-owned, are theoretically charged with the task to monitor officials and reflect the people's opinions.

But in practice, all these mechanism is very weak.

chinationreport:

Shame on those uninformed!! You have the time and luxury to make news out of no news about China, why don't you study or go to visit the once most significant royal garden of China next to the Bird's Nest: Yuan Ming Yuan (Old Summer Palace, Please Google)

and discover the ruins of shame! Shame for Britain, shame for old Europe, humiliation and hurt for generations of innocent Chinese. The tragedy of our (your) ugly, blood thirsty human nature is still vividly displayed in this once beautiful today yearning and lonesome garden. The humiliation is never forgotten although the brave Chinese people have forgiven and moved on. You are doing a great job at reminding the Chinese how the West can continue to humiliate them, by depriving them of their pride, their joy at the time of celebration and reconciliation, by bringing them a curse and checking their china at the party they host, by examining the threads of their wedding gown when they are getting married...

Make yourself 'Petty Man!!' China will move on. It is your choice to stay Petty or you can choose to open your eyes and have a different vision for China and the world.

From:
http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice

Anonymous:

But if there is another Mao-like Dictator on the sit of China, then it is really difficult to shake him off.

Because current Chinese governing body is not immune to dictatorship, but US only 4-8 years term.

And in China, media are censored to protect the governing body, and current government has no good system to receive commons' idea about their will.

Not only that, corruptions of all the officials and their families, friends are the blocks of commons right, which talented people never will have change to be used to serve China and their people.

Such governing body is even fragile than the Qing and Song and Tang Dynasty, because in those great eras "the Imperial Exam 科舉制" was a guarantee for the dictator system to pick the most talents to work on all the important spots, that the Emperor and his people were still served well;

But now, there is no any other ways to guarantee the suit people to work for the governing body, only the flock of the leader switching the power in hands, and any corruption will be covered, if it is related to leader's family or friends, others are standing at wrong side then to be punished severely.

In US, the media have free rights to report to watch the governing body, so no dictatorship can be formed under such system of system.

Whatever the system is, people must have their rights to observe and report about their government, even in Spring and Autumn period, the history recorders of each states had rights to record the history, including dukes and kings mistakes on the bamboo record.

TaiShi Gong 太史公﹐﹐ wrote history record史記﹐recorded the Emperor Wu's mistakes at that time.

That we know, current China governing body is not yet an open society, and as Chinese, we have to know our country's weakness.

Sure, we can forget Mao, June 4th, and other past events and injuries; but our country do need a balance system for our people, if not now, then for future generation.

And we don't expect the current Chinese Communist Party to do anythings about it, they are all fighting for food and jobs, these two most important issues, but one day, when the education of common and officials get higher standard, then that must be done, and that must be done by those who work in Chinese Communist Party.

Current Chinese issues: economic, environment.
Future Chinese issues: Education, Democracy.

For the current Chinese governing body:
1) we don't have any system to collect talents or correct persons to work and serve for public; Only the leaders friends and family that is never right and fair for the whole society that creates corruptions on finance and legal system.
2) We don't have any people to watch these corrupted officials, and they live above the law because their relationship to those on top, and they keep sending their friends and families on the top spots, that virtually our country becomes their household. And they will never let loose of their power to change our system to a democracy system which means they will cut off their own family business.

Within 20 years, China would not rise a person like 戈爾巴喬夫. For a selfish reason, a person will regret he once lay down his power; but for his public, he must lay it down, once he has done his term.

If Mao lay down his power before 1960, then China would advance faster and early, our generation may never see Culture Revolution that no Chinese would ever want to talk about that period of time.

I hope some of people could really understand this post and meditate on this.

For China, we don't need another party, but we need our people to observe our government and officials, and people have rights to point out any official mistake, this way no any dictator or any his group or gangs would be guaranteed on top to ruin the whole country. China don't belong to individual, nor any particular family, she only belong to all Chinese, and that every Chinese must have their rights to observe and report about their government as the Americans do.

song wen-tao:

thanks USA,thanks China,thanks washingtonpost, thanks parents,thanks friends,give me this chance to speak here.

白湘灵:

everybody should view things in right position,i do not agree with the personal idea.if u do not know well about something,u can not show ur own ideas,coz u have no such qualifications.

Zhang Fan:

@an expat living in china, d:

Chinese media shall change somewhat towards some good aspects of the western media, but first and foremost I'd like to see more of the de-powering of the media, both in the east and the west. The media simply hold too much leverage, which in my view is a bad thing for a modern society. I'd like to see the time of googlezon, which has not come yet.

Side note: Chinese media may be much worse than the western media in many perspectives but at least it does not have the power to dominate the world's headlines hence the political agenda. The western media, however, does. Greater power calls for greater responsibility. I hate to say it but time and time again NYTimes and Washington Post simply serve as running dogs for the US foreign policies, which is short-sighted to begin with. Since Mr. Pomfret seems to know Chinese history, I'd like to refer him to think more in terms of 霸 in the Spring-Autumn period. How those nations became 霸? That's the question US should carefully consider at this time.

Peter:

I asked a simple question. No invective attached. I didn't even express an opinion. The responses are, largely, super-charged exercises in evasion.

No state is perfect, that's for sure. Most, if not all, do bad bad things. But citizens who run so mindlessly to the barricades of their government, whatever the country, are pathetic.

Peter:

Learning,

"enforceable law" is the key phrase. So, yes, power in the international realm is unrestrained in comparison with the domestic sphere. Is there something ground-breaking about this concept?

But, Learning and Post-American, you still refuse to answer my question...Instead, yet more turning away....it's kind of obvious.

Zhang Fan:

@Peter,

I suppose you sincerely want to know the answer so I sincerely try to answer your question.

Historically China has never had in place any of the kind of democracy as you described. It had always been the highest form of dictatorship, one dynasty after another. The changes of dynasties had always been bloody, over wars and people dying. The last Chinese emperor was kicked out only in 1910, then followed by almost 40 years of civil wars and foreign invasions. Mao was the last China leader who died in office (that's 1976), and Deng was half-retired when he died in 1997.

Since 1980, Deng Xiaoping started the institutional rule that mandates no leader can be in power all his/her life. Now the constitution mandates that the term of the nation's leader must not exceed 10 years or two terms. Similar rules are also in place for the CCP's leaders. Jiang Zemin is the first Chinese leader who followed the rules and voluntarily left office, and that was 2002/2003. Hu would almost certainly follow the same path. From my point of view that's a huge progress already.

There's no doubt that theoretically democracy is better than dictatorship. But please also keep in mind that:

1. Democracy cannot be imported or transplanted. I can give you large number of examples of hasty democratizing causing long-lasting catastrophes. As a nation that only has a few decades of peace and prosperity, China realizes that democratization will be a long-lasting process therefore places peace and prosperity a higher priority over dramatic democratization. That's a conscience strategic decision that I as a citizen support.

2. The institutional rules are as important as how these rules are executed in practice. And the executions relies heavily on the context and the people. China will democratize, but will certainly do so on its own terms and pace. I thank you for your concerns but would like to urge you to let Chinese people decide their own things. The latest Pew survey shows that Chinese people has the world's highest satisfactory rate, a whooping 82%, over the direction the country is heading. Why are all these foreigners fussing about, I cannot understand.

3. Democracy for me is a vehicle to prosperity and better lives, not an ideal state of being. I respect your opinion but at the same time would want to request the same from you. I'm not forcing anything to you so please also do not force anything to me. Live and let live, isn't that better?

maotai:

Peter and Learning

I think we have a better system in Singapore at least by results;

- a higher per capita income
- less pollution per capita
- lower crime rate
- less people in prison per capita
- high proportion of minorities (in the US, blacks) in prison
- better education (and safer too!)
- better public health care
... the list goes on.

Learning, I know the attraction that the US system has for China. I have heard comments from my Chinese friends but the world cannot sustain another US especially not with the population size of China (or India).

Peter, the fear should be rise of a China that behaves like the US both domestically and internationally. The ordinary Chinese aspires to live like an American. If they adopt the same political system, their politicians will be like the US and the results will be the same but magnified. So watch what you do and do what you want the Chinese to learn. The time will come when the shoe is on the other foot.

Learning:

Peter:

"There is no enforceable law in the international system that I know of, so power is relatively unrestrained (in my view...of course, others may differ). Does that answer your question regarding the US in the international sphere?

Domestically in the US, there are institutional constraints on power -- regular elections, congressional oversight, media freedom -- that may fail at times, but generally serve to restrain the state."

---------------------------

Your words are really revealing: A system of morality,democracy,freedom,and justice is only for U.S domestically,whereas imperialistic American muscle in internationally.

Mike:


This piece is really amusing. The author actually thinks he said something intelligent. It is not even intellectual laziness.

Peter:

Citizen of the post American world,

There is no enforceable law in the international system that I know of, so power is relatively unrestrained (in my view...of course, others may differ). Does that answer your question regarding the US in the international sphere?

But I was asking a question regarding the domestic system of China. It was a simple question....
Yet, as you clearly show, it is easier to evade, counter-accuse, and fly into a righteous rage rather than to answer a question one wishes to avoid. Nice work.

Domestically in the US, there are institutional constraints on power -- regular elections, congressional oversight, media freedom -- that may fail at times, but generally serve to restrain the state.

Would you like to hurl more invective, or would you like to answer the question?

maotai:

just to be a clear, i for one am a Singaporean not a native chinese. from other postings here, i find that i am not the only one. i post here because english language media is my main (but not only) source of news and information.

despite having a one party government, fair amount of censorship and suppression of dissent, we don't get criticized too much coz we are small, prosperous, located in an important geo-strategic location and are seen to be an american ally.

we are not the only country treated thus, saudi arabia for an example is worse off in terms of human rights (and provided most of the 911 bombers) but coz they are american allies, all is well ;-)

it is clear that the different standards apply if you are deemed to be an american ally or otherwise.

Citizen of the post-American world:

Peter writes: "I don't know much about China, so maybe some people here can help me out: is there some system in place that prevents the abuse of power by the Chinese state? If so, can you please explain how it works?"

Peter, I don't know much about the US, so maybe some people like you can help me out: is there some system in place that prevents the abuse of power by the US state? If so, can you please explain how it worked in Vietnam, in Nicaragua, in Sudan under Clinton, in Afghanistan, in Iraq, in Guantanamo .... as well as in Chile, in the Shah's Iran, in Guatemala, in El Salvador, in Panama, in Grenada, in Haiti, in Palestine, in Lebanon, in Cuba, in Ecuador, in Indonesia, etc.?

Later, we could look into abuse of power in the US proper.


Ron Murray:

The YSA's carping is getting obvious.

Once again I don't see how we can complain about any other countrie's bad behavior; we have again set a precedent.

Anonymous:

To Peter,

Only God can stop such system.

Have you seen June 4th?

I am Chinese, but I don't like the government, what I can do?

Like all those disqualified officials and their idiotic sons and friends like worms eating away Chinese blood money... such as Li Peng's son

What Chinese can do?

We are not Americans!

But such government will put down anything against them.

Only time can work for Chinese, as more of these old worms die, the future Chinese are better.

If more Chinese get on street protest, more Chinese will die.

Why Americans don't understand this?

But right now, Chinese government, want to wash off their hands, and put on clean cloth, so give them good words like encourage your immature child, just say: "Good Jobs!"

So this way, they may do better.

That's the only hope, but not bashing, your bashing don't work.

Your bashing only provokes Chinese nationalism growth, because Chinese government knows about Chinese better than your media and government.

U.S hegemony and egotism:

Russian hegemony:

"Oh please, the Russian "peacekeepers" were armining the South Ossetians who were then firing upon the Georgians. The fact that the Russians were able to respond so quickly validates the fact that the Georgians were baited to attempt to take over their OWN territory (emphasis added since you seem to miss that point).

Your logic is around as sound as the Russian claiming that a 35,000 man Georgian military would be the aggressors against a Russian military with over 35,000 tanks."
---

Where is the South Ossetians' right of self-determination ? That is so treasured by U.S for the case of Kosovo and also for "Free Tibet.",isn't it? How can Georgian army be so wrong to kill thousands civilian in S.Ossetia instead? U.S just shows it is double standards in its favor. Is it a fickle empire? Your judgment.

Rachel:

Here's a question:
Is it better to die having made good choices than it is to live having made wrong ones?
My answer is that it is better to die having made right choices. Most of the time right choices will help you live better and longer anyway.
The reason I bring up the question is this:
What is the right way to treat China? My moral sense tells me that we ought to be friends with them. We ought to try to understand one another without resorting to categorization to define each other. Whatever our goals are regarding China (and who knows what those are) I think they are much more easily accomplished with China as a friend. What are the risks? That China will take advantage of us, find our weaknesses, and attack us. I think that highly unlikely, but even if that did happen, better to die having made the right choice. Seriously, I'm not kidding.

As for China's economic power with regard to the U.S., yes, China has a lot of U.S. money, which it will then invest in the United States, so the money cycle continues to increase and bless everyone.

Peter:

I don't know much about China, so maybe some people here can help me out: is there some system in place that prevents the abuse of power by the Chinese state? If so, can you please explain how it works?

Chinese hegemony:

What's up with all the Chinese propaganda on this thread? Nothing like having your government pay you to post on "western" threads?

Why does it matter when the Chinese at home can't even read this sites.

Nothing like being intellectually dishonest and trying to compare "censorship" with "free speech".

Talk about intellectual laziness, if you can't address censorship don't even try to criticize free speech.

Russian hegemony:

Oh please, the Russian "peacekeepers" were armining the South Ossetians who were then firing upon the Georgians. The fact that the Russians were able to respond so quickly validates the fact that the Georgians were baited to attempt to take over their OWN territory (emphasis added since you seem to miss that point).

Your logic is around as sound as the Russian claiming that a 35,000 man Georgian military would be the aggressors against a Russian military with over 35,000 tanks.

Raoul:

Nice article, Mr. Pomfret. You do a good job of pointing out the idiotic theories that can drive thinking about China among certain clueless individuals in the States. Your statement regarding the merits of "context, nuance, background" might serve as an admonition to the ideologues on both sides who regularly rampage across this blog.

Wills:

109:

What is pathetic and laughable is how the chinese here expound on china's development as if they somehow accomplished it on their own. Wen Jiao Bo said that curently america has about $1,000,000,000,000 trillion usd in circulation in china's economy, not to mention all the ohter nations that have come to invest, build factories and provide jobs and incomes to literally hundreds of millions of chinese that would otherwise have no work. All this capitalization has built every city everywhere and provided chinese with possibilities that didnt exist before. Also, nations like the us, france, britian, germany, canada, australia, etc have graciously educated hundreds of thousands of chinese in science and technology that have contributed mightly in china's development. these chinese bloggers here seem to conveniently have forgotten these facts and are dishonestly ungracious to acknowledge how the west has saved them from a system incapable of providing basic services, jobs, and better life on its own. Even the great olympic buildings in beijing and grand office buildings in shanghai were designed by foreigners. It doesnt take anything away from a chinese to be grateful for what the west has provided. In their minds, it seems to be a sign of weakness to be thankful.
================================================

Man,are they doing charity there? Africa needs them more,why they just do not go?

So that's the difference between you and businessmen.They think otherwise,whatever you admit or not.

Give people their due.Give people their pride when you also feel proud.

Should U.S thank the world for using most of resources by trading with U.S dollars,which depreciate so much nowadays?

dy:

Hi 109,
I think Chinese are grateful how we benefit from the western science and techonology. We also realize how much profits the wester companies have realized in investing in China. Most Chinese also realized over the last few centuies the pains the western countris inflicted on the people. Let me tell you this, 911 is a tragedy to Americans and to lots of people in the world. But in Chinese history, there were 1000, or maybe 10,000 911 attach. That formed Chinese mentality and explains why people somehow support a lousy but powerful central government. Chinese view themselves as victims, not becasue they they want to, but because they HAD BEEN victims since the Western people found the East. They only got a break since World War II, thanks in part to Americans' help.

U.S hegemony and egotism:

What U.S has been doing is to play off one ethnic group in other countries against others and eventually make a world of thousands of small,weak countries and a huge,fickle U.S empire.With this in mind,you would never fail to understand their foreign policy and other efforts in areas like media and human right movement.

What is Human Right Watch doing recently? They are trying to piece together Russian's violation of Human right in Georgia.But they never mention Georgia's militants' attacks on civilians.

U.S praised Russian democracy while setting shield and sword around Russia and ridiculously saying doing it against Iran,a country miles miles afield.Now,Russia is drove to the corner and has to fight back,yet Russia is condemn as "dictatorship."

Is there any difference between S.Ossetia and Kosovo? Why does not U.S treat them equally? What is U.S action speaking to China?--Probably U.S is building a buddy system to rule the most of the world--it only shows a empire but not a democratic model.

U.S is doing and the world is watching.Don't be fooled.All American did has no much implication from democracy and freedom. They would provide you a little fancy vignettes,but eventually all about American hegemony and egotism behind.

_kt_:

Nice job, Mr. Pomfret. There are no angels or demons here, just people. I appreciate how you talk about what you actually know about, and without bias.

As for collectivist societies... As far as I can tell, Japan is culturally much more collectivist than China. Yet, they are a democracy with a very strong modern record of human rights, and they are one of the strongest allies of the US. Heck, most small towns and even the state of Hawai'i have somewhat collectivist cultures.

As to the fear of the opening ceremony drum sequence... Give me a break. There were only a few times more people than in the USC marching band, and their synchronization was no better than the Trojans. Unless you play college football, you don't have anything to fear from USC any time soon.

dy:

China's "model" is not new. Singapore is a one-party state, too. China is still experimenting. Eventually, China will become a democratic country to some extent. China, even though with 5000 years of history, is still a young country, only freed itself of Western and Eastern (Japanese) invaders and colonists 60 years ago. And the reform only started 30 years ago. And China is not a communist country, not any more.

109:

What is pathetic and laughable is how the chinese here expound on china's development as if they somehow accomplished it on their own. Wen Jiao Bo said that curently america has about $1,000,000,000,000 trillion usd in circulation in china's economy, not to mention all the ohter nations that have come to invest, build factories and provide jobs and incomes to literally hundreds of millions of chinese that would otherwise have no work. All this capitalization has built every city everywhere and provided chinese with possibilities that didnt exist before. Also, nations like the us, france, britian, germany, canada, australia, etc have graciously educated hundreds of thousands of chinese in science and technology that have contributed mightly in china's development. these chinese bloggers here seem to conveniently have forgotten these facts and are dishonestly ungracious to acknowledge how the west has saved them from a system incapable of providing basic services, jobs, and better life on its own. Even the great olympic buildings in beijing and grand office buildings in shanghai were designed by foreigners. It doesnt take anything away from a chinese to be grateful for what the west has provided. In their minds, it seems to be a sign of weakness to be thankful.

dy:

Good job, John Pomfret! Thank you! I am a Chinese and I like to read your articles. I don’t necessarily agree everything you say. But I your articles really make me think about lots of things.

fullofit:


Have you eve been to those parades? when it comes to the native Americans sect, a bonch of latino dudes come out dressing up with feathers? because the real natives have almost died out? Has any of these reporters cried for fakery?

Have you even been to those megachurches? where thousands of people singing praying crying all together? Has any of these smart intellectuals categorized that as "collectivism"?

This is why this country is called the United States of Hypocrisy.

Citizen of the post-American world:

Confucius writes: “Great Man demands it of himself; Petty Man, of others.”

The Beijing Olympics have opened wide the door to Petty Man.

Petty Man was born and raised believing he was Great Man. Petty Man believes no man can ever be his equal. Petty Man cannot conceive that any man be superior to him. In the power game, Petty Man sees himself standing unsurpassed. Whatever Petty Man does is right. When others do the same, it can only be wrong, or of inferior quality: Petty Man will obligingly find and point out what makes it so.

China needs no break from anyone, nor does it expect any from the West. Cuba never got any break, it having been made clear by the world’s Hegemon that Cuba had to be prevented at all costs from ever succeeding. That is how Petty Man keeps “proving”, again and again, that he is Great Man.

As has been said, though, “the proof is in the pudding”. Most people in this world have been force-fed the West’s pudding. Admittedly, they did not like the taste of that stuff which, they remember all too well, left them extremely sick. “The sick man of Asia” will be last to forget.

It is often asked, as John Pomfret himself did recently, what model China has to offer to the world, and what countries have ever adopted said model! Confucius again: “It is not System which makes man great. Man can make System great.”

China offers the rising world a prime example of pride, extreme courage and hope.

China has fought and liberated itself: "Ours will no longer be a nation subject to insult and humiliation. We...have stood up." (Mao Zedong) China has since raised its head and risen. At an unprecedented pace in the history of mankind, China has progressed from semi-colonial to major world power status. At the Beijing Olympics, China showed the world its past and present contribution to human civilization. Today, from Asia to Latin America, from Africa to Russia, that example lives. A post-Western world order is born.

The lesson of the Beijing Olympic Games is clear: “Great Man demands it of himself; Petty Man, of others.”

Confucius: “The Master said, 'Those whose courses differ cannot lay plans for one another.'.”

Wii II:

The only objective article I have read so far in WaPo about China. It shows Mr Pomfrets knows a little more about China than David Brooks (who happen to be a good political analysist but shows his limitation about China), or the ugly racist Meyerson. It is funny that some reporters claim they are doing their job bashing China, while their host media companies are bending every basic rules to get a share of the huge Chinese media market.

In the late 1980s, when Mr Pomfrets was studyiing in China, he may notice the tremendous interest in America among young people there. I was a student at Nanjing University then. My professor in political economics did not teach the Marxist doctrine in class, instead, we studied and debated on topics such as free market, democracy, western political systems and basic values. These studies and the experiments in 1989 laid the foundation of the reforms that brought the free market to China. China still have a long way to go in political reforms, and may need the help from American people. Bashing China blindly is not helpful, as it only feeds nationalism that the government trys best to derive its legitimacy from.

Anonymous:

I don't feel really that bad that China government punishes their separatists, I would do the same to those who want to divide my country.

Lock them in jail is better than let them loose to other countries that will cause disturbance to other nations wherever they go.

In fact, these people should not even have much of freedom before they really understand what is true freedom.

They are just like Ben Ladden should be hunt by the US government and Chinese government, to lock them in jail is to protect the human rights of majority public.

Wolves are always wolves, they attack sheep no matter where they are.

Anonymous:

"But I think these people are some of the Tibetan and Weiwuer separatists that escaped from China."

Finally a pro-China poster has made a real point. They "escaped" from China. The lucky ones.

To someone who posted that Russia and China will place a defense shield in Cuba and Venezuela. Please. If you think the Americans will back down in the end, you are very wrong. Same with Europe. WW1 and WW2 anyone. Cuban missle crises anyone? The issue is Russia can not stop the flow of missles to Poland, while the US can to Cuba and Venezuela. Especially Venezuela. Do you not think that Columbia and Brazil will not take out Venezuela if this were to happen? Why do you think Venezuela is trying to buy more weapons?

Anonymous:

For all majority good people of American and Chinese and rest of world.

You may find out there are some Anonymous who acting they are Americans here posting provoking material for American and Chinese to fight. So this way, they are benefited from other people's tragedy. But I think these people are some of the Tibetan and Weiwuer separatists that escaped from China.

Their object is to keep provoking the American people and Chinese in conflict, so they can live a scumbag worm life on others' tragedy.

Just ignore them.

jbe:

NO.

It is impossible to be too tough on corrupt, lying, poisoned food, and poisoned medicine exporting, criminal leaders of the Communist Standing Committee.

They are corrupt, lying, criminal scum and deserve the shame they bring upon China to be their's alone.

I feel sorry for the ordinary Chinese person. They are oppressed by corrupt gangs of criminal liars.

gary:

Ma Bole wrote: "For every Chinese child who digs his classmates out of a pile of rubble, there are many other Chinese who simply turn their backs. I read a news report yesterday describing how a group of Australians here in Beijing rushed to aid a van full of injured Chinese who had been involved in a traffic accident. Meanwhile, perfectly heathly Chinese survivors, passers-by, and policemen stood by and watched."

^---Wrong. The earthquake involved hundreds of thousands of Chinese knee deep in rubble trying to help out buried villagers, as much as the uniformed soldiers tried to keep them back. And the Chinese stadium refugees fed each other, waited in line for food and quietly walked away when food ran out, and were uniformly courteous and helpful, such that even though there wasn't much government assistance at the stadium, there was never a crisis like in New Orleans.
But somehow you think that trying to dive into a crashed car with no medical experience means you're better than everyone else who kept their cool and knew best not to touch the victims? How judgmental of you. You should be ashamed.

Observer:

Why are we even giving ligitimacy to China. They cheat in everything they do. From 13 yr old gymnasts to keeping the Yen undervalued. Manufacturing piracy, to polluting the environment. Not on redeeming thing out of China, except some of their women are hot.

Independent:


Thank you for bringing up a topic I think needs to be addressed. Mr. Brooks is very simplistic and plain wrong in how he looks upon China, compared to the United States. As John Pomfret observes, individualism is not as pervasive in United States society as some contend. Many, if not most students, especially at th secondary level, in this country dress in ways to deliberately conform to the group.

Many students, especially among the male gender in certain groups, ostensibly or actually disdain serious academic pursuits, to be accepted by the group. The size of the average new house in this country is substantially larger in 2008 than it was in 1978, with a smaller average family size. Many Americans try to show off to their neighbors, having bigger houses than they truly need.

As John Pomfret also observes, Mr' Brooks in saying China is motivated primarily by collectivistic drives, is wrong. This was largely true during the Mao led era, but is not true in the contemporary period of rampant capitalism. The entrepreneurial spirit is stronger in China than in western nations, including the United States.

The Chinese educational system is quite similar to the japanese and South Korean systems, with emphasis upon high educational standards, respect for teachers, parental involvement, national standards and the key importance of exams. There is a high premium in Chinese, Japanese and South Korean schools upon individual achievement.

There has been little noticed seminal changs in the United States, in the attitude of national leaders, since the 1980's. During the cold war, most policymakers seemed to maximize the influence of the United States, while realizing there were limits to the power of this country.

Since the end of the cold war, the two Bush and Clinton administrations have sought global hegemony for the United States, imposing a Pax Americana, President Kennedy rejected during the height of the cold war. National leaders, especially the so-called neo-conservatives, clearly seek United States dominance in the world, politically, economically, militarily and arguably culturally. Dominance in sports, to some extent, goes along with this mentality.

Therefore I believe the hostility shown in much of the western media, including "The Washington Post" is a pervasive fear and insecurity among many politicians, pundits and people, China poses a challenge to United States dominance. There are comparable economic insecurities toward China as there was toward Japan during the 1980's.

The strength of the Chinese military and its possible intentions are distorted, exaggerated by those politicians, pundits, others who seek imaginary potential adversaries to justify unnecessarily high military spending by this country. Most American politicians and pundits since the end of the cold war have rejected the notion other countries are to be allowed to have or act upon their own national interests, unless in accord with perceived United States interests.
Therefore Israel is widely considered to be acting in its national interest, with a thorough crackdown of the Palestinians in Israel occupied lands, while China is often criticized for similar policies in Tibet following riots there.

These politicians and pundits seem quite unaware how there have been radical changes in China since 1979, comparable to some extent in United States history only during the Civil War and 1930's. Yet some Americans insist China enact radical political changes. The politicians in this country are unable to enact moderate needed changes affecting health care, energy sources, climate change, etc. So who are they to demand radical changes in other countries, such as in China?

The United States still has many serious problems.
There has been considerable progress in this country in civil rights, women's rights, gay rights and the environmental movement since the 1960's. Most Americans would have been strongly resentful had foreigners, especially pompous pundits and reporters, had generally hostile coverage of the Olympics in the United States during the 1940's or 1950's, when segregation was rampant, repression of blacks was pervasive in most of the south, women and most ethnic minorities were treated as second or third class citizens, pollution was worse, etc.

Were the Olympics in the United States this year, there could have been widespread negative foreign media coverage and protests because of the invasion and occupation of Iraq, widespread human rights abuses that have tarnished this nation's moral credibility on the world stage, etc? How would most Americans regard such likely negative coverage and protests?

More Americans need to try to put themselves into the shoes of other people, including the Chinese.
The vast majority of the Chinese people are justifiably proud to host the Olympics, as the people in india, Brazil and other nations will be in the future. The media and pundits should try to hide their xenophobic nationalism and insecurities for a couple weeks to allow the Olympic ideals to be displayed by the athletes involved.

Born and bred Singapore:

Firstly, I am very happy that China has done a gold-standard job in the Beijing Olympics opening ceremony.

I think other than some ill-informed westerners, not many countries in Asia are fretting about the rise of China or it's internal policies.

Mr Pomfret's big mouth will serve good feeding into the sub-prime black-hole created by the "world's sole superpower".

Hira Biswas:

For the last few days, David Brroks and Harold Meyerson kept me thinking about the Eastern mind and Western mind or the collectivist and the individualist mind; - both of them made some very thoughtful observations. They deserve our attention because with time the world is becoming smaller and smaller; the East and the West could collide if they do not understand each other. I wish both Brooks and Meyerson would have presented their views in a more humanistic, neutral, and non-nationalistic way though.

Anonymous:

"Stuck for years being harassed and pushed around, many detained or beaten, threatened by local authorities their (thugs) and being followed by plain clothed lackeys"...

Wow, for a second I thought I was reading about the mexico-usa border...

JiaMing:

As a Chinese, hats off to Mr. Pomfret's very insightful article. You have so much understanding of the selfish aspect (what you called individualism) of the Chinese culture that China should be truly afraid of Westerners like you if you ever to have any hostile intentions toward China. Simply put, you know too much about us.

China did have a brief experiment with democracy in 1911, right after the fall of the Qing Imperial government. It was quickly proven that democracy took too much voluntary cooperation among the population of China. This is the reason why Dr. Sun Ye Sen, the founder of the Republic of China, coined the famous quote "Chinese are like a bucket of loose sand".

Comparing China to Western societies, it is very obvious that individual Westerners are far more integrated with the groups and community than Chinese. From the day a Westerner is born, he or she is surrounded by different social and religious organizations which he or she is expected to be a part of, whether the church or school committees. Those who don't belong to any groups are called "loners". It is this tradition of social activism that formed the foundation of the modern democratic system in the West. The only social organization that a typical Chinese person is a part of is the extended family that includes the parents and siblings as well as any living elders. Social activism is non-existent in the traditional Chinese culture. It is my contention that without fostering it first, China cannot have a functioning democracy.

Z:

Can any of these Chinese propagandists here make a point without calling Americans stupid or obese or idiots? Show some respect when we are trying to learn about your culture, the good and the bad.

Boston student:

Hey, Mr. Pomfret, i like your articles, i've liked them since '89.

just one thought that i want to share with western press: if you guys ever want to run business in China some day, sooner or later, try to be nice to chinese people and stop challenging their patience by calling them slaves, victims and brainwashed people. you pay people respect, they'll buy your news.

Anonymous:

Can anyone blame the reporters on their reporting of China. Stuck for years being harassed and pushed around, many detained or beaten, threatened by local authorities their (thugs) and being followed by plain clothed lackeys. Time to apply the pressure, more and more of it. Keep them coming boys, I am entertained. If it does not bother the chinese as a few have claimed, then go away.

Anonymous:

"Were there any real Tibetans or Uyghurs at all?"...

I hope this question didn't just come from an American...because someone might retort..."Are there any live Native Americans left"? For pete's sake, there is even a Columbus day in the US to celebrate the Ameican Genocide! What hypocrites!

Western media has lost so mush credibility with China, and it's not just with the Chinese in China, but many outside of China too. As for whether you all have been "too harsh" with China, I will say that the Chinese government would be the last one to tell you to stop.

The Olympics have brought out the worst, most biased, half-truth and malicious sides of the western so-call "free media". It really gave many in China a good reality check. It has also united China even more. Previously, China's one major weakness has been its inability to unite its people around its government. But I think the attacks on the torch, and the whole slew of malicious reporting on China by the western press have rallied the whole Chinese population around Beijing. So, why stop? Keep up the good work!!!!

I have just read an article in the Chinese press that the "Reporters without borders" doesnt have one single journalist in its group. How strange! In any case, I hope that China realizes that, the more these western media outlets whine and rant about China, the more "on the right track' it is. Nobody cares about India because it is still weak, so the plight of destitutes and the corruption of the government in india do not interest the western media. But it is precisely the fact that China is gaining so much, that the western media is having a frenzy with China. I take it as an all around good thing for China...you people unite the Chinese, and provide a good gauge for China's direction.

Western press, Jia You!!!!

Anonymous:

"Western media has lost its charisma among chinese public, it just so simple."

What is your point, really? Western media is for Westerners, not chinese, that simple. You can post all you want, it is our choice to listen or not.

"western media to provide the "truth" but due to the recent local events where comparisons can be made, the chinese are learning that this trust has been misplaced."

Trust the media, what are you, a child. Western media is a large part entertainment and another part fear creation. Everyone in the west knows that, everyone. Do you thing the average person in the west cares for one second about China? Most could not care less were it is on the map, period. Why should they? It is were their undershirts were made.

"I'm glad you're having a second thought on these things. The intellectual laziness among the western media on China is deafening. About time to change..."

Ya, it is going to get worse for China and more entertaining for the west. All this talk of bias, the bias is we are viewing china by our standards, not yours. No bias their and no communist government filter. China likes to put a positive spin on everything, west likes to dwell on the negative, deal with it.

Ma Bole:

For every Chinese child who digs his classmates out of a pile of rubble, there are many other Chinese who simply turn their backs. I read a news report yesterday describing how a group of Australians here in Beijing rushed to aid a van full of injured Chinese who had been involved in a traffic accident. Meanwhile, perfectly heathly Chinese survivors, passers-by, and policemen stood by and watched.

David Brooks' piece in the NY Times was ignorant shlock. Anyone who has lived in China for any length of time knows that it's coming apart at the seams. Collectivism? Tell that to the billion or so Chinese who've been left out of the last 30 years of economic development.

Ming yao:

Yes, let's give the benign harmonious totalitarian, authoritarian, collectivistic and individualist one-party state a break!

Anonymous:

Whoever post the comment say "Pay for comment", "Raised under propaganda", "Brainwashed" those kind of nonsense, you don't deserver anyone's attention. Speak of free press and speech, I also get this from America "God hate gays", "God hate American", "God hate dead soldier in Iraq" well basically god hate everything. If this is what you call free press and speech, we rather not to have it!

Michael Turton:

Nice post, John. Language Log annihilated Brooks.

]]languagelog.ldc.upenn.edu]nll]?p=478

Though it is not entirely his fault. Nisbett's research is often interesting, but his explanations are asinine...three years ago the Taipei Times mentioned this research. Nisbett then said in a classic bit of essentialist crap:

+++++
"Asians live in a more socially complicated world than we do," he said. "They have to pay more attention to others than we do. We are individualists. We can be bulls in a China shop, they can't afford it."

The key thing in Chinese culture is harmony, Nisbett said, while in the West the key is finding ways to get things done, paying less attention to others.
+++++

Naturally I had a lot of fun roasting that, but then he went on to add:

++++++++++
In ancient China farmers developed a system of irrigated agriculture, Nisbett said, in which farmers had to get along with each other to share water and make sure no one cheated. This is especially the case in rice farming, he said.

Western attitudes, on the other hand, developed in ancient Greece where there more smallholders ran individual farms, raising grapes and olives, operating like individual businessmen. Thus, differences in perception go back at least 2000 years, he said.
++++++++++++

Actually ancient Greece had extensive irrigation systems. Nisbett's ignorance is frightening, and David Brooks is his disciple. Aargh.

Michael Turton

5 mao party:

Look at all these posts coming from the 5 mao party. They must be getting rich posting comments on websites.

All these people are paid to place comments on websites as propaganda. It may work in China, but we in America have a free press where we can learn about these types of things.

Yes, our "western media" has problems, but at its core, they, and the people who read it, are free to form our own opinions.

whiteidiot:

so many friends from america are caring the situation in china. so happy to know that.
no rights, no rice.
more rights, more rice.

hilario:

Mr Pompous Pomfret, you got your brains in the wrong place.

On the other hand:

China is both very individualistic and collectivistic. On the face of it (like crowded roads and buses), China is very individualistic. But deep down, in ways I can't really tell you, there is a very profound collective identity.

maotai:

haha ... and i rather that chinese troops are doing performances than invading some small countries for their oil or "regime change" LOL

maotai:

@MMIII

so what is wrong using the troops to perform. they are available, disciplined and cheap (paid for anyways!)

the chinese use their troops for rescue work, performances and ... heck, they even rent them out to make movies. all hail capitalism! and you tell me what is wrong with that???

klyjdjj:

Hi americans,
Each year, there is some new words coined in chinese sociaty that got immediate popularity and was quoted everywhere by everyone. Such words are described as "Thunder words"
The two most recent thunder words are:
1. Why don't you join the national man soccer team?
It means: The soccer team is just a band of hooligans, so this is very strong language.
2. You can't be so CNN.
It means you have to say or do things upon at least some facts, you shall not make up things out of nowhere.
It is so funny for such a title, give china a break?
It doesn't matter whether you give it or not, the more things you do, the more chinese people knows about you. Western media has lost its charisma among chinese public, it just so simple.

MMIII:

"A nation that can assemble 2,000 perfectly synchronized drummers has clearly staked its claim as the world's assembly line."

Army of drummers or army of soldiers-in-disguise?

'Many viewers also didn't realize that most of the 15,000 "volunteer" performers were from the army or paramilitary...'

http://www.courier-journal.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080813/SPORTS/808130897

Anonymous:

But USA's Democracy and Human Rights concepts were developed through a 200 years' very difficult struggling period by the population of 20M - 200M people.

(typing error)

Anonymous:

Once again, let compare the two different systems or concept from Women Gymnastic Games.

The Team Achievement:
China Gold; USA Silver
Individual AllAround:
USA Gold&Silver; China Bronze and Fifth.

These are the comparison of education or discipline of Individual society and Collective society.

Both systems have their weakness and Advantage:

But USA's Democracy and Human Rights concepts were developed through a 200 years' very difficult struggling period by the population of 20M - 2Billion people.

China really started to develop after 1980 with the size of population of 1.1 Billion people.

But those Western activists or bias reporters (Most are American Idiots) never look at China in a series precise way, and now look at US governemnt and society, full of holes, even though those Americans claim to have freedom of speech, human rights, and free media, or 'democratic' voting system, still American cannot fix it, I don't believe 4 years term of president could improve a thing.

American may have the tool, but they are not building their system, but to tear it down.

Chong:

Whatever westerner say, China really doesn't care. Have you ever achieved anything via westerner media on China?

One question: How can such an "evil" country achieved such rapid development and their people are much happier?

Hmm, someone must be brainwashed. For me, it's obvious.

Dan Lin:

I was a believer of the western media on Tian An Men square in the summer of 1989. After living in the US for 18 years and closely following their coverage of China, I came to the point of having nothig but utter dispise for them.

Boon:

Beijing Olympic has really bring the beast out of the western press. I truly agreed that the press should report the truth and fairly but not indulged in some kind of "nation bashing" activities to the smallest details. Hardly any positive news at all from China, which is truly Spectacular and Amazing as the Opening Ceremony. Very sorry to learn that the western press have lost their positions in upholding the very values it stands for. Just face the reality - China is changing and may be different from what you expect them to be, with an opened heart.

to "Pomfret":

"Han Chinese kids posing as ethnic minorities"

Were there any real Tibetans or Uyghurs at all?

Chinationreport:

The question is good and certainly a good way for the author to get attention. But the author did not give any answer.
I'd like to try: Yes, please!!
Not only the West should give China a break, it should start to show China respect!!
The days for the West to feel entitled to lecture China are gone for good! I understand that it is hard to swallow but deal with it. The world does not need a moral police any more. China and Chinese are having their best time ever recorded in the modern history. Let them celebrate in their way, progress in their way, perfect in their way. You have no right to dictate to China under the name of human rights or whatever rights. Afterall, it is their time, it is their journey!

Visit: http://www.chinationreport.com/#EditorsChoice for balanced news and views about China

amicus:

As a chinese living the Us, it is stunning to read your argument against David Brooks -- Harmony and the Dream, which in my view is the best so far that explains the difference between the two societies. If you don't even undersand why
Chinese culture emphasises much much more on collectivism than individulism, you don't know anything about China. If the author is the the best reporter from the post stationing in China, no wonder the Americans don't get much from the media coming out of China. It is sad.

bbc:

MEDIA ARE ALL LIARERS.

tangjinde:

I admit that we exist lots of problem,but the western also.
China can make much more progress than you thought,
western media and repoters ,do they really know about china

mike:

The author does not understand china at all! I have read some of his junk articles. He has a pre-set mind before he starts his writings.

maotai:

@expat

the western media holds itself to be better. we expected more from it. in the past, the chinese public look to the western media to provide the "truth" but due to the recent local events where comparisons can be made, the chinese are learning that this trust has been misplaced.

yes, we know what the chinese media is, but now we also know that the western media is the same beast in a different hide.

Anonymous:

Chinese cannot change unless the Chinese government allows them to change, and Chinese government's main object is the economical standard of Chinese citizens, if there is anything new that would hurt the growth of economic development, the government will use the collective system to shut it down, especially, the political system is to control current China, and it is good thing that there is system that is quick to react to any disaster natural or others.

a few human rights and democracy can be put to wait, because without bread or rice, others are useless.

And there is 1.3 Billion to take care, it does not take a night, it may take 50 years maybe.

While westerner calling Human Rights for Chinese, the majority Chinese are working hard for Human Rice.

That is the difference btwn those who truly know about China and those who think they know something.

an expat living in china, d:

@zhang - that's a really annoying thing to say. John has described how the US media (and people) needs to change, to respect Chinese people as individuals. Zhang, how do you think the Chinese media should change? I have a few ideas, but I'd like to hear yours.

Zhang Fan:

I'm glad you're having a second thought on these things. The intellectual laziness among the western media on China is deafening. About time to change...

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