Dec 16

Chinese Foreign Ministry recently described French President Sarkozy’s meeting with the Dalai Lama as an act that would “gravely hurt the feelings of the Chinese people”.

It is the kind of phrase you are looking for in every Chinese official indignation – ok, feelings hurt, this isn’t something good. However, this is the first time I actually didn’t let it just pass, and asked myself: what does this phrase actually mean? Sure some countries have hurt our feelings, so what? You expect an apology or something else from the other side to compensate your “hurt feelings”? Continue reading »

Dec 16

It’s about time!

Per Mark McDonald at the International Herald Tribune: Shortly after dawn Monday, a passenger plane took off from Shenzhen, China, bound for Taiwan. The 80-minute flight across the Taiwan Strait marked the first regular cross-strait traffic since the end of the civil war in 1949 and another dramatic step in the improvement of relations between the two countries.

The Shenzhen Airlines flight from China – along with a later TransAsia Airways flight to Shanghai from Taiwan’s capital, Taipei – inaugurated regular direct flights between Taiwan and mainland China. Direct ship traffic and mail service also began Monday, state media reported.

Xinhua, the official Chinese news agency, reported that the flight from Shenzhen took off at 7:20 a.m. The TransAsia flight from Taipei left 46 minutes later. A total of 16 direct passenger flights were scheduled Monday. Continue reading »