Jul 13

Translation: Letter from Xinjiang – Reflections on the Xinjiang Problem

Written by may on Monday, July 13th, 2009 at 6:11 am
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The letter was written to Mr. Ruan Yunfei 冉云飞, a well-known Chinese writer and blogger, by someone from a very small minority group in Xinjiang after the Urumqi Incident. It provides a unique perspective into the ethnic relations in the region. It is unique because the author is neither Han nor Uighur and the voice from smaller minority groups in Xinjiang is seldom heard. The author expresses her views with extraordinary candidacy and courage.

I thank Mr. Ran for helping me contact the author. I am very grateful to the author who gave me permission to translate the letter and publish it on the Fool’s Mountain. She also worked with me patiently in the past few days to clarify many points in the letter. Our communication is reflected in the translation and the notes at the end of the letter.

The author wants the readers to know that the information she provided in her letter about the policies and conditions of ethnic minority eduction reflects her experience in a particular university and at a particular time (early 2000) in Xinjiang. The author does not claim to know situations in every universities in Xinjiang or in the whole country. Readers should be careful when making generalizations. She also said there might be some changes in the policies and conditions of ethnic minority eduction in recent years that she is not aware of.

The original letter is here.

Letter from Xinjiang – Reflections on the Xinjiang Issue

Mr. Ran:

I don’t know if you still remember me, but I went to visit you last October when I was attending a conference in Chengdu.

The reason I write to you today is I want to share some thoughts on the Urumqi Incident as someone from Xinjiang.

I grew up in a frontier town in Northern Xinjiang. The local Uighurs is a small number. Most of the locals belong to other smaller ethnic groups and are obedient.
Although we also have corrupted officials there, there are almost no revolts against the government.

I went to university in Xinjiang. In the universities in Xinjiang, Min Kao Han民考汉 students, that is, ethnic minorities who graduate from schools taught in Chinese, are all allocated to one class. Han Chinese students have their own classes. Moreover, there are also classes for Min Kao Min民考民 students, that is, those taught in minority languages. These Min Kao Min民考民 students are mostly ethnic minorities but there are also a small number of Han students.

自 从我们上大学后,所有的课程都必须用汉语教学了。而我们上公共课时,汉族会有一个合堂,民考汉和民考民会有一个合堂。当我们少数民族课堂上课时,因为学生 听不懂汉语的专业词汇,老师一着急,经常就蹦出维语来了,而我们这些民考汉的学生都听不懂,很懊恼;维族学生也一样,因为从小学习汉语,维语的专业词汇也 听不懂。影响了我们两方面学生的成绩。
When we go to university, all the classes have to be taught in Chinese. When we attend common courses [as opposed to courses for different majors – translator], Han Chinese students are taught together while Min Kao Han民考汉 students and Min Kao Min民考民 students are grouped together and taught in one classroom. In the class of ethnic minorities, the teacher has to resort to Uighur sometimes when the students can not understand the technical terms in Chinese [teachers for minority students are mostly Uighur – translator]. When this happens, we Min Kao Han民考汉 students are very frustrated [because they are schooled in Chinese and they can not understand Uighur – translator]. It is the same with some Uighur students. They are schooled in Chinese and neither can they understand the technical terms in Uighur. This affects our grades. [See NOTE 1]

I heard in Inner Mongolia all classes in the university are taught in both Chinese and Mongolian including sports. There, the Department of Chinese Language中文系 is called the Department of Han Chinese Language汉语系 because Chinese languages include more than just Han Chinese language (this fact is overlooked by many).

新疆的大学都有预科班,所有新疆的民考汉(出疆的)、民考民和汉考民学生都要上。民考汉上一年预科,基本上就是在重复中学的课程(学费很贵),在疆内读大学的民考汉则不用读预科。民考民和汉考民要上两年预科。预科如果毕不了业则需要继续降级,一直读到考过HSK(汉 语过级考试,相当于中国的托福。很难考,题目很怪,汉族学生都不会)。考不过的学生中,条件差的读了一两年预科就回家了,有些条件好的哈萨克族学生则可以 留学哈萨克斯坦(据说她们去那里留学,哈国有优惠政策)。而很多勉强过关,或者作弊过关的学生,后来的专业课对她们来说则是梦魔,因为都是汉语。所以大批 量的少数民族学生成绩超差。这样也会影响到少数民族毕业生的就业,尤其是民考民的学生,就业很困难。
All Xinjiang universities have preparatory classes for students before they start university courses. All Min Kao Han民考汉 students who will attend universities outside of Xinjiang, Min Kao Min民考民 students and Han Kao Min汉考民 students [See NOTE 2] are required to take these preparatory classes. Only those Min Kao Han民考汉 students who attend universities inside Xinjiang are not required to take these classes. Min Kao Han民考汉 students who want to study in universities outside of Xinjiang attend one year of preparatory classes。 These classes are basically a repetition of high school materials and the fees are very expensive. Min Kao Min民考民students and Han Kao Min汉考民 students need to take two years of preparatory classes. If you can not pass these preparatory classes, you have to keep studying until you pass HSK exam (a Chinese language proficiency test, an equivalent of TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). The test is very difficult. Some questions are so odd that even Han Chinese students can not get it right.) Among those who fail to pass the test, some from poorer families go back home after one or two years of preparatory classes. Some Kazak students can afford to study abroad in Kazakhstan (I heard that Kazakhstan government gives preferential treatment to Kazak students from China).For those students who barely pass the Chinese language test or only make their way through cheating, studying their majors later in the university is a nightmare because the classes are all taught in Chinese. As a result of the language barrier, many minority students have bad grades. This also affects minority graduates entering the job market, especially those Min Kao Min民考民 students. They have a very hard time finding a job. [See NOTE 3]

I saw many instances of religious interference in my university. For example, during the month of Ramadan, the woman in charge of our dormitory will “raid” our rooms at night to make sure the Muslim students are not observing Ramadan. The university will also request Min Kao Min民考民 students (most of whom are Muslims) to gather in the school’s dining hall after class and eat their meals together.

我 觉得少数民族的信仰自由,很难得到保障。一方面是信仰伊斯兰教被政府阻挠,另一方面是信仰其它宗教受到本民族的阻挠。我大学期间,我的一个同学,她们几个 姐妹都私下里信仰了基督教,而在她们(穆斯林)民族里,信仰其它宗教是很受歧视和排挤的。(虽然我不喜欢基督教,但是我支持她们信仰自由)
I find it difficult to ensure religious freedom for ethnic groups. On the one hand, the government interferes with Islamic practices. On the other hand, practicing a religion other than Islam is disapproved by other Muslims. During my study in the university, one of my classmates and several of her sisters converted to Christianity in private. In their ethnic group (Muslims), people who practice a non-Islamic religion are very much discriminated against and isolated. (Although I don’t like Christianity, I support their freedom of belief.)

On the one hand, both Han Chinese and Uighurs have prejudice against each other. One the other hand, people like us who are from a much smaller minority group have even less social status. Han Chinese think we are a minority people and discriminate against us; Muslims thinks if we are not Muslims we must be like Han Chinese and they discriminate against us too.

In addition, I want to share some thoughts on Wang Lixiong’s book My Far West, Your East Turkistan. I think Wang Lixiong’s book misses the target. He misunderstands the Xinjiang problem. He frames the problem in a bipolar opposition between him and his Uighur friend and forgets Xinjiang is a multi-cultural society of over 40 ethnic groups. This bipolar reasoning can also be seen in the title of his book. Everything is about “you” and “me”. It leaves no room for “a third person”. Wang Lixiong ignores the opinions of other groups in Xinjiang. The Hui driver who accompanied him on the trip had different opinions on many issues. Wang Lixiong simply dismissed them as a result of brain-washing by the government. He never attempted to understand why the Hui driver had different thoughts from the Uighur.
This is the first point I want to make.

Secondly, Wang Lixiong seems to have a preconception that ethnic relations in Xinjiang are just antagonistic. In reality, many different ethnic groups in Xinjiang live peacefully together throughout history. Wang Lixiong’s book is based on a notion of antagonistic ethnic relations. I don’t think he has really reached out to the common folks.

另外我还想说一下,作为一个少数的少数民族,我对于新疆独立的看法。从我个人立场上来说,我不赞成新疆独立。因为我觉得穆斯林民族的民主势力太软弱了,一旦新疆独立,必然成立一个原教旨主义国家,我是反对政教合一的国家的。也 许有人说那是她们民族的传统(说这话的人根本不考虑生活在新疆昂的其她民族),但是我想说,在原教旨主义国家里,很多自由难以保证。其一,同性恋必然是会 受到打压的(在原教主主义国家,常常处死同性恋者);二是女性也会有更多的社会桎梏。(目前的乌鲁木齐,许许多多的穆斯林女性,脱下了长袍,穿着时尚,她 们愿意拥有这种可以选择自己生活的自由,而在原教旨主义国家,这样的自由恐怕是很难很难);三是信仰其它宗教的自由也必然遭受更大的冲击;四是,其她少数 民族怎么办?不信仰伊斯兰教的少数民族怎么办?
What’s more, I would like to talk about Xinjiang independence as someone from a very small minority group in Xinjiang. Personally, I don’t support Xinjiang independence. The reason is I think the democratic forces among the Muslims are too weak. As soon as Xinjiang goes independent, it will become a fundamentalist country. I am against joining the church and the state. Maybe someone will say that’s their tradition. Those who say so completely disregard other ethnic groups who also live in Xinjiang. I think in a fundamentalist society, it is hard to ensure much freedom. First, gay and lesbian rights are oppressed. In some fundamentalist societies, gays and lesbians are executed. Second, women will face more shackles in the society. In today’s Urumqi, many Muslim women put away their traditional robes and wear fashionable clothes. They want the freedom of choice. It will be very difficult for women to enjoy such freedom in a fundamentalist society. Third, the freedom to practice a non-Islamic religion will be threatened. Fourth, what about other minority groups who do not believe in Islam?

所 以,从立场上我是不赞同新疆独立的。从新疆的现实来讲,更加不可能实现独立。新疆的周边中亚国家早已与中国政府组成了上海合作组织,这个组织已经从反恐走 向了经济合作(哈萨克的油管直通中国内地),连俄罗斯也想掺和进去。而且对于中亚国家来说,她们需要中国这个强邻来与俄罗斯之间形成制衡,保障她们的主权 不会过多受到俄罗斯的干预。所以周边国家不会支持新疆独立。
Consequently, from this perspective, I disapprove of Xinjiang independence. In reality, Xinjiang independence is unrealistic. Xinjiang’s neighboring countries in Central Asia have joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization with the Chinese government. Countries in this organization joined forces on the issue of anti-terrorism and they also begin to cooperate on economic issues (oil pipes run from Kazakhstan to inland China). It seems Russia wants to join the organization too. Moreover, for Central Asian countries, they need a strong neighbor like China to hold off Russia and to ensure Russia will not interfere too much in their internal affairs. That’s why I don’t think the neighboring countries will support Xinjiang independence.

Speaking of Xinjiang itself, it has over 40 (47? I forget) ethnic groups, most of which are not Muslims. What these ethnic groups need is not a Uighur-dominated regime in the place of a Han-dominated regime. It is a democratic system that they need. They have already had enough living under the shadow of the dominant ethnic groups.

The Xinjiang problem is not a problem between ethnic groups. It is a problem of freedom and democracy. The Chinese government will not give freedom and democracy to its people; neither will it give to the Uighurs. That’s why the problem can not be solved. When the unsolved problem erupts, it erupts as an ethnic conflict.

I am very concerned about the situation in Xinjiang. I hope everyone I know is sound and well. If you Mr. Ran can publish my letter, it will be my pleasure.

[NOTE 1] There are also courses where Han students and minority students are taught in the same classroom. These courses include common courses that are less important, for example, Regional History of Xinjiang, or Computer 101. They also include courses for different majors. But for those important common courses (e.g., Calculus), Han students and minority students are taught in separate classrooms. And in general, teachers for Han students in important common courses are better qualified than those for minority students. Teachers for minority students are mostly Uighur. The author thinks using less qualified teachers for minority students in important common courses affect these students’ performance later in studying their majors.

[NOTE 2] According to Baidu Encyclopedia, Han Kao Min汉考民 students are ethnically Han students who attend schools using minority languages as language of instruction and take college entrance exam in minority languages. These Han students are usually from those Han families that live among minority communities.

[NOTE 3] In Xinjiang, students enter these preparatory classes after they pass their college entrance exam. Only after they successfully pass these preparatory classes and the HSK exam, they can start their 4-year university courses. It seems setting up these preparatory courses means that a lot of the minority students have to spend more time and money before starting university than their Han counterparts. The author said there are financial aids for students studying the preparatory classes. But the quota is very small and the competition is intense. The money often goes to students with connections not those who really need it.

In Xinjiang, before taking the college entrance exam , Han students and minority students are given different lists of universities and majors to choose from. In general, Han students have the widest variety of universities and fields at their choice. Min Kao Min民考民 students have less choices. In particular, very little advanced fields seem be open to them. Min Kao Han民考汉 students have the least choices. In addition, Han students are given past admission scores of universities and fields that can help them make better decisions but minority students are given none.

Although in the college entrance exam minority students receive extra scores based on their minority status, this preferential treatment on scores does not really open up chances for minority students to enter universities in Xinjiang. For example, in the field of Road and Bridge Construction, Han students and minority students have separate admission quota. As a result, minority students are competing among themselves (so does the Han students). When everyone is getting extra scores based on the minority status, there is really no preferential treatment. (Please note that although minority students do not gain any advantage over Han students under the “extra score” policy, preferential treatment on quota for minority students can open up more chances for them to get into university – thanks to LC for pointing this out.)

[NOTE 4] The term Min Kao Han 民考汉 literally means “minority testing using Han”. Last year, FM translated two posts from Min Kao Han Forum: Don’t indulge our “race complex” and Oppose Belief Opportunists: My Thoughts On Modern-Day Uighur Christians.

[NOTE 5] Chinabeat posted a two parts review of Wang’s book early this year. Chinese Intellectuals and the Problem of Xinjiang ( part I and part II).

There are currently 3 comments highlighted: 43064, 43134, 43271.

118 Responses to “Translation: Letter from Xinjiang – Reflections on the Xinjiang Problem”

  1. S.K. Cheung Says:

    Discrimination is bad, in whatever form or guise. Discrimination based on ethnicity is no different. The irony is that, based on this one account at least, the Uighurs who feel discriminated against are not shy about discriminating against other minorities in exactly the same way. Much like when I grew up, and CHinese Canadians would complain about racism, but then go on to disparage other ethnic groups without thinking twice.

    THe second half of the letter is interesting. The objection to independence because it would replace one ethnic dominator with another is thought-provoking, although it seems to assume that the han majority would somehow up and leave. It would be nice if ethnicity was no longer the foremost consideration in every equation. The author calls for democracy, but it would be unfortunate if the majority think that they are Uighur above all else, to the exclusion of the common good of all the people.

    As for “preferential treatment”, it comes down to the quota in relation to the number of applicants. If the ratio of number accepted to the number of qualified applicants applying is the same between han and minorities, then you’d have to consider the hypothetical of “if a Han applicant was otherwise identical in every way but was now instead a Uighur, would that increase his/her chances of acceptance”, and vice versa.

  2. Realclearchina Says:

    Thanks for this post. It was a very illuminating glimpse at the difficulties and challenges facing minority students in China.

  3. Heart of The Dragoon Says:

    I can understand why a lot of Uighurs and other minorities are not happy with the education system. Things can be made better by

    Allow universities and colleges to teach main subjects in ethnic languages and have a Chinese language for work place course as optional.

    Provide a fund to help more ethnic minorities get businesses going. Drop the idea that all business must be conducted in Chinese language. They just need to allow to use either Chinese or English to intercommunicate with other ethnicities but what they do in the workplace is their choice.

    This will enable the people to empower themselves more.

  4. Shane9219 Says:

    I respect the original author’s POV. There are many other minority groups in Xinjiang, besides Uighur. In China, there is a special term called 较少数民族, a minority with small population. None of them that I know would support and engage any form of separatism, but their number and cultural influence are not great enough to have a significant impact on Xinjiang’s situation both current and future.

    In China, the model of ethnic integration is Yunnan Province, where you can see many lively, distinctive and colorful minority population and culture side-by-side as well as a warm and cordial society, the next is GuangXi where Zhuang ethnicity is dominate (Olympic gymnast Li Ning is a Zhuang), the following places will be Hunan (there is a branch of Uighur in Hunan too !), Hainan, Sichuan, Inner Mongolia, three northern provinces where Manchu and Korean population are clustered, the region around Tibet. The last place is Xinjiang due to its harsh and unstable history.

    Huis are a population group with distinctive culture and religious faith. They spread around almost the entire China and integrated into Chinese society well since ancient time. Admiral Zheng He of 15th century is also a Hui. Though there were many trouble incidents through history between Hui and Han, the emphasis of brotherhood and unity in Muslin faith sometimes does play a big role of amplifying social or individual issues.

    The core components of Chinese culture, Confucian and Dao, are ethnic blind with an emphasis to forge a shared destiny (great harmonious society) through great learning (大學之道) by people of all levels. This is a major difference with Jewish Judaism and Muslin faith.


    Here is an old article about the particular Uighur branch in Hunan province.

    They settled in Hunan during Ming Dynasty “More than 600 years back, Hala Bashi, a Uygur noble, acted under orders from Emperor Zhu Yuanzhang, founder of the Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), to guard Fengshu and was given surname “Jian”.”

    “In the areas where most residents are Han Chinese, the green mosques and growing number of restaurants serving Moslem food, let people feel a strong sense of ethnic Uygur culture.

    “The government has helped us build several mosques,” said Jian Dejiu. In the past 50 years, local governments have sponsored training of over 20 imams, two of whom have made pilgrimages to Mecca in Saudi Arabia.

    Although ethnic Uygur people here seldom marry Han Chinese, they can speak Mandarin (Putonghua) in addition to their mother tongue Uygur language. ”

    Thirty-one-year-old Jian Yiming, head of Fengshu Township, said “what makes us ethnic Uygur people different from Han Chinese brothers is that the state policies are lopsided toward us Uygur people.”

    Local governments have encouraged ethnic Uygur residents to expand traditional slaughter and leather processing businesses, and ethnic Uygur residents have therefore led a far better-off life than Han Chinese in the areas.

    “We also spread our business skills to Han Chinese brothers, so that we ethnic Uygur people and Han Chinese can become prosperous together,” said Jian Yiming, also a graduate of the Central University of Nationality Studies.

    Though ethnic Uygur people only account for 20 percent of Fengshu Township’s total population, every leader of Fengshu Township has been selected from the ethnic Uygur group since Fengshu became an autonomous township of Uygurs in 1986. This group of ethnic Uygurs have a number of celebrities among them, including Jian Bozan, a well-known Chinese historian. ”


  5. Shane9219 Says:

    Another note:

    I have heard from many minority intellectuals as well as in their own writing about their trouble of seeing “Great Wall” as a core symbol of Chinese achievement, while Han people are used to feel proud of it.

    This is an important and symbolic issue that should be discussed in candid among minorities (especially Tibetan and Uighurs) and Han.

    My own opinion is that people should respect and reflect on history:

    1. Great Wall was built and rebuilt several times over the history
    2. The main function was on defense, earlier warning and troop transportation.
    3. It is a major historical engineering achievement, like it or not
    4. It was very costly in the history and put heavy burden on common people, yet not that beneficial (as no castle could not prevent from being broken into in the history), not a proud example on infrastructure building.
    5. The real meaning of Great Wall was long discarded, but the symbolic meaning must be torn down among Chinese. So when 2008 Olympics opening showed the break-down of Great Wall, I could hear a joyful cheer from westerners, but felt a little shock from my Han brothers and sisters 🙂

  6. Steve Says:

    @ Shane #5: I don’t understand the meaning of your last sentence (point #5). Could you explain it a little more fully? Thanks!

  7. Shane9219 Says:

    The symbolic meaning of Great Wall was strongly attached with a traditional Chinese sense of cultural supremacy and isolationism. I think westerners hate the later, but minorities would hate the first.

  8. Nimrod Says:

    I think you’re reading too much into the Great Wall. The Great Wall is treasured among the Chinese partly because it’s just so damned big. After all, not that many visible (and symbolic, since it’s mostly crumbling and rebuilt) large-scale artifacts linking with history are still around. It has some added cachet due to its popularity with Westerners, who write about it so much and link it immediately with China like the giant panda.

    But I agree with the part about minorities. It isn’t because of the wall’s symbolism though. It’s because it’s an alien concept to them. Many symbols of China could be interpreted as Han symbols or pan-Chinese symbols, but a minority would first have to accede to and accept either Han culture OR the Chinese state as part of one’s own identity (I note that the latter is sufficient, the former is not necessary). Barring that, it would be impossible to internalize these symbols. This is an interesting question though — how to manage the tension between Han symbols or originally Han symbols and Chinese symbols. It isn’t about tossing in minority symbols either… I feel what is necessary is a distillation of some common values and symbols that everybody can accept as “Chinese” like what the EU did in its charters. Unfortunately (and consequently), a strong religion is the main roadblock, and it is no surprise at all that the “problem” minorities are Uighurs and Tibetans (and Hui, till somewhat recently).

  9. Steve Says:

    @ Nimrod: Excellent comment. If it is possible for the EU to inscribe common values within the European community, surely it is possible for China to do so within her own country. I also agree with you about the Great Wall; every non-Chinese person I know thinks it’s cool and wants to see it. I’ve never heard anyone say they hated it or describe it as a symbol of isolationism. Personally, I always thought of it historically as a protection against the Mongol and Manchurian hordes. As Shane said, it never really fulfilled its main requirement but is still very impressive to visit, at least to me.

  10. Nimrod Says:


    About the EU, yes, but… the EU is grappling with its Muslim population is it not? France and headscarves, the accession of Turkey, etc…

  11. Shane9219 Says:

    The issue of attaching “Great Wall” as a symbol of Chinese culture supremacy was raised mostly by intellectuals (either with minority background or westerners), not tourists. The trouble is when they start to read Chinese history, they would immediately realize their ancestors were being called “barbaric” by Hans. That is not only unpleasant, but could ring a sense of modern-day cultural racism to political intolerant, nitpicking western intellectuals (who are quite popular nowadays).

    People want, need and search for symbols for their common emotion and culture. We can’t prevent it. We have to face it and resolve the kind of inner conflict in order to construct a common world with a shared destiny.

    So there are some effort of promoting a better cultural integration in China, for that lays the foundation for ethnic integration. The so-called Great GuoXue (大国学, Great Sinology, Great China Studies). The person who made this proposal is 国学大师季羡林先生, who was just deceased recently. He said specifically GuoXue should include Tibetan culture, Islamic culture within Chinese border, and influence from other civilizations.


  12. Steve Says:

    @ Shane: I’m sure there are “nitpicking western intellectuals” out there, it’s just that no one knows or cares about them. I’ve never heard of any and haven’t met anyone else who has. I think you really have to search to find them, and quite frankly they are irrelevant.

    It’s true their ancestors were called “barbaric” but that is a perfect example of how to fall behind other cultures. Because the Chinese emperors and mandarins thought everyone else was barbaric, they stopped learning about other cultures, stopped improving their culture and fell behind the rest of the world. If anything, the unpleasant feelings are borne by the Chinese themselves when they look back and realize the mistakes of their leaders and the price the Chinese people themselves had to pay for 150 years because of those mistakes.

    If I want to find people to disagree with, I can always find them, no matter how irrelevant they are. But that doesn’t make what they say relevant. Popular? Popular with whom? Probably just popular with each other.

    @ Nimrod: What you say is true, but the fact that they’ve managed to get ancient enemies to work together is still progress. Though Germans, Italians, French, Spanish, etc are all very different, they still share some commonalities and those commonalities have been emphasized. I guess these cultures share considerably less commonality with Muslim cultures and are having a harder time integrating with them.

  13. Shane9219 Says:


    “I think you really have to search to find them, and quite frankly they are irrelevant.“

    Not at all. This kind of political intolerant individuals are one dime a dozen nowadays, just read news reports and blogs by those people 🙂

  14. Shane9219 Says:

    One has to ask why some minorities in China have no great motivation to study hard on China’s standard language and culture teaching, while people in places like Japan and Korean tried very hard years ago to learn English and their culture teaching, even though their mother tongues are so different from English and other western languages.

    The issue in my view comes down to both incentive and personal cultural interest. As China becomes more advanced and prosperous, more minority people will come along.

  15. raventhorn4000 Says:


    In fact, Human Rights Watch (http://hrw.org/un/chr59/counter-terrorism-bck4.htm#P183_32636) reports this number in one day nearly exceeds all those killed since 1990 in the area in demonstrations. If we compare this reportage to riots in the USA we find a distinct difference. Following the Watts riot in LA which came 5 days after the passage of the 1965 Voting Rights Act, President Johnson blamed the rioters arguing that there was no justification for it. Out side agitators were often used as excused for African-American riots, especially in the South. This was especially true of Nixon who used riots in Afrian-American communities to fan political criticism of certain foes but especially African-American leaders (see Nixonland: The Rise of a President and teh Fracturing of America, by Rick Perlstein, 2008) Following the Miami riot in 1980 the Reagan led Republican Party used the disturbance again to blame the rioters and not the political system of discrimination. The same occurred with the Crown Heights riot of 1991 and LA riot of 1992. When one reads over the media discussions of these events we do not find the kind of criticism of US policy we find today with the media on Chinese events. We should define the nature of the crimes involved, race was an issue, the victims were almost all Han Chinese. Whether outside influences were involved, the pattern is clear how the media has chosen to communicate the events.

  16. Raj Says:

    May, thank you for taking the time to translate these thoughts. It’s interesting to address the wider issue of political representation in Xinjiang rather than just ethnic issues.

    Although I think that the changing demographic balance, with Han on the fast track to becoming the largest ethnic group in the region, will be an issue until some sort of stability occurs, the lack of a political voice for those who are unhappy with at status-quo does make things explode in an ethnic manner because generally the Han are happiest with things as they are, whilst the Uighurs are most unsatisfied.

    Whilst independence wouldn’t replace one set of masters with another, as many Han in Xinjiang are there to stay, realistically it is not on the cards anyway. Political reform, starting with real autonomy rather than proxy Beijing rule, would help resolve matters. But it seems like the central government is too stubborn to consider this and will pursue cosmetic actions. The only people who can help bring about change are Chinese people (i.e. the national Han majority), but sadly they are no more sympathetic to the democratic deficit in that part of China than the politicians. A shame, because I fear that without it Xinjiang will see events like this happen time and time again.

  17. raventhorn4000 Says:

    The hard reality is that there are many Uighurs who are well off. And there are many Chinese of all ethnicities who are very poor.

    The common complaints of poor Uighurs are similar to common complaints of other Chinese poors, eg. taxes, corruption, rising cost of living, etc.

    Thus, I do not think the Chinese policies are “discriminatory” or “segregationist” to the point to place the minorities in clear economic disadvantage.

    *another point.

    1st hand account from some Western Journalists, http://blogs.princeton.edu/pia/personal/schristmas/personal/, have indicated that many city dwelling Uighurs have fairly high standard of living, expensive weddings, Uighur bars, etc.

    Other accounts, indicate a vast shortage of outside knowledge to explain the “discrimination” in Xinjiang.

    (For example, Uighurs as Muslims, could NOT even allow themselves to be in the same room as Han Chinese, when they are consuming pork. 1 US English teacher make the mistake of inviting Han Chinese and Uighur students to dinner in the same room, thinking that she could serve pork to the Han Chinese and serve non-pork food to Uighurs. It led to an embarrassing situation where the Uighur students had to tell the teacher that they could not be in the same room!)

    (from above linked blog: “Then I realized that the pot-stickers and the dumplings were cooked in the same kitchen, hence every crumb from “Shangdong Jiaozi Fanguan” was technically unclean. (If it weren’t for the fact that I spent the entire summer with DLC, who cultured me on all things Orthodox Jewish, I would have never thought of this, but, you know, you can shamelessly apply one religion to another, even if they don’t really get along…) We apologized profusely, totally embarrassed of how American and clueless we were, and then MG and GA said that they couldn’t even eat in the same room with us while we ate pot-stickers! More embarrassment ensued.”)

    In Xinjiang, universities have separate dorms and separate dining areas for Uighurs and Han Chinese for the same reason!

    On that note, Now, I find that the “Han only” employment advertisement a little less discriminatory on its face. If one realized that Uighurs could not even stay in the room, while pork is being served, One can certainly understand that the employment advertisement indicates not what kind of ethnicity is preferred, but rather what kind of cuisine demarcation.

    (Again, even I assumed that Uighurs could somehow work in the Han Chinese restaurant, but clearly 1st hand accounts tell us otherwise.)

  18. Shane9219 Says:

    @Raj #16

    >> “Whilst independence … realistically it is not on the cards anyway”

    I hope you explain that to Uighur exiles in Europe, and see if they listen to you, otherwise it is just your own naive and wishful thinking. Those exiles even regard “Xinjiang” as an offending word to them.

    The aspiration for independent “East Turkestan” has been going on for centuries, will not die down anytime soon. I hope for a better and improved situation in Xinjiang, but I have no illusion of trouble-free so long Islamic fundamentalism and Uighur separatism are live and kicking.

    The recent trouble in Xinjiang also underscore the point that I made several times on this forum, that is, a strong and functioning government coupled with a gradual social and political reform with a goal to build a strong civil society is the best way forward for China’s modernization.

  19. Think Ming! Says:

    @ Raventhorne 17,

    You say: “(Again, even I assumed that Uighurs could somehow work in the Han Chinese restaurant, but clearly 1st hand accounts tell us otherwise.)”

    Not really. Many Uighur work in restaurants serving non-Halal food. While not the norm, I have seen it on countless occasions.

    Thus I would still label the obviously discriminatory job advertisement as being discriminatory.

  20. raventhorn4000 Says:

    BTW, I recommend highly for everyone here to read the huge amount of (very funny and very insightful) blogs as linked


  21. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Think Ming,

    “Many Uighur work in restaurants serving non-Halal food. While not the norm, I have seen it on countless occasions.”

    That might be the exception rather than the norm. (from every thing I have read in the above blog.)

    It seems there is some customary segregation in Xinjiang, done on religious grounds.

  22. JXie Says:

    A few points to make,

    * First a nitpick. Russia was a founding member of SCO.

    * What the author called for the “democratic force” to safeguard the rights to other smaller minorities, is actually the “counter-democratic force” in a liberal democratic society: the force that prevents, or rather slows down the tyranny of the majority; and hopefully with the slowdown, the majority is enlightened enough not to trample on the rights of the minority. World On Fire by Amy Chua gives a good look at what if a society lacks that counter-democratic force.

    * Some figures of a few relevant adjacent -stan countries, and Xinjiang:
    Country, Per capital Nominal GDP, Oil production (mil ton/year), Per capital oil production (ton/year)
    Kazakhstan, $8500, 68, 4.1
    Turkmenistan, $3900, 10, 1.9
    Xinjiang, $2900, 26, 1.2
    Pakistan, $1000, N/S, N/S
    Uzbekistan, $1000, N/S, N/S
    Kyrgyzstan, $950, N/S, N/S
    Tajikistan, $800, N/S, N/S

    * As can be seen, Kazakhstan is quite a bit richer than the other -stan countries and Xinjiang, probably mostly due to its energy wealth. There are about 1.5 million ethnic Kazakhs in Xinjiang, about 18% of the number of Uighurs. Kazakhstan even offers scholarship to Xinjiang Kazakhs who want to pursue college education there. Yet you hear very little Kazakh/Han tension but rather only Kazakh/Uighur tension.

    * The language of the once powerful Manchu Empire, Manchurian, is on its way of extinction — at least as a viable language since there are some artificial ways trying to preserve it now. Interestedly there is an ethnic group called Xibo in Xinjiang still speak a form of Manchurian dialect.

  23. JXie Says:

    Think Ming #19

    Not really. Many Uighur work in restaurants serving non-Halal food. While not the norm, I have seen it on countless occasions.

    Did you see that in South Xinjiang, or somewhere else?

  24. Think Ming! Says:

    JXie, I’ve seen it in both South and North Xinjiang.

  25. Think Ming! Says:

    Also, regarding my earlier comment (number 19). . .

    Yet again a completely innocuous comment of mine has been ‘voted down’ within minutes of going up.

    Maye Fool’s Mountain needs to have a long and hard think about the way the system of permitting readers to vote on comments is being blatantly abused by cyber bullies to silence voices they disagree with?

    It is completely obvious that, like Jesus, I am being persecuted here.

  26. Shane9219 Says:

    @JXie #22

    >> “Manchurian, is on its way of extinction”

    That is true. During the late years of Qing Dynasty, most Manchus could not speak or write their own mother tongue.

  27. Think Ming! Says:

    @ Raventhorn 21,

    Yes, there is some segregation in food preparation/consumption, done on religious grounds.

    There is also plenty of discrimination.

    Or, I am supposed to say “discrimination”, and then argue it’s all really religious and the discrimination is not real?

  28. Nimrod Says:

    Think Ming #27:

    Of course discrimination is real. But who is discriminating whom, that’s the question. It seems in Xinjiang it’s mutual discrimination and self-imposed segregation in many but not all cases. This is the “Chinatown” model and it isn’t necessarily unacceptable to the people involved. But even if that’s not the case, who are you supposed to blame? The majority always? Then who is the “majority” in Xinjiang anyway? Actually, “blame” isn’t even that constructive. My extended comprehension of this letter is that the situation is more nuanced than the usual rhetoric of “majority” and “minority” would imply, even if you take away all the other 40+ minorities in Xinjiang and just look at Han and Uighur.

  29. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Think Ming,

    If Uighurs see religious reasons to not be in the same room with other Chinese, it is their custom that we are respecting.

    Not all segregations are de facto “discriminations”. Some “segregations” are for valid voluntary religious or customary reasons.

    I would also add that it is probably implied that Han Chinese cannot apply for any jobs in Uighur Halal restaurants, since most Hans have no knowledge of how to follow the religious requirement of preparing Halal food.

  30. Steve Says:

    @ R4K: I took your first three paragraphs from #17 and changed just a couple of words:

    The hard reality is that there are many Negroes who are well off. And there are many Americans who are very poor.

    The common complaints of poor Negroes are similar to common complaints of other American poors, eg. taxes, corruption, rising cost of living, etc.

    Thus, I do not think the American policies are “discriminatory” or “segregationist” to the point to place the Negroes in clear economic disadvantage.

    This is exactly what I heard from southern politicians growing up in the early to mid 1960s.

  31. raventhorn4000 Says:


    hard reality, Americans knew that the average African Americans were substantially below the living standard of the average White Americans.

    I do not think there is such statistics comparable in China. Indeed, the privilege quota system (in place ever since Economic Reform) probably gave more benefits to minorities in China, because the quotas are far more than the actual population ratios.

    African Americans started as “economically disadvantaged”. Whereas Uighurs and Han Chinese were probably equally poor in 1949 and 1980 and probably today, on average.

  32. Wahaha Says:


    The above was said by 冉云飞.

    Can anyone give an example how 民主 solved the problems without dividing the country or area into several parts ?

  33. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Well, in US, “desegregation” was actually a very forceful policy, where National Guards were called out to escort Black Students into traditionally White only schools.

    But this policy would not have necessarily been good everywhere else. Recall that Australia’s “stolen generation”, where Aboriginal children were placed into White Schools. The loss of cultural identity was very destructive to the Aborigine tribes.

    *the problem is how to balance “desegregation” (which would increase economic benefits to minorities), and “segregation” (which would increase protection for minority cultural identities)?

    Afterall, some African Americans actually choose to establish all Black Colleges, to preserve African American heritage. (and that has not been ruled as reverse discrimination.)

    Ultimately, it is really about individual choice. If a Hispanic or Chinese person in US chooses to “segregate” themselves from the majority English speaking community, so to preserve his/her own culture/language, that is the individual’s own choice. But such a choice, might also mean that that person would have less economic benefits in the general population.

    Uighurs face the similar problem.

  34. Think Ming! Says:

    @ Raventhorne 29,

    Rather than obfuscating things further could we just agree that the 只限汉族 job adverts are blatantly discriminatory?

  35. raventhorn4000 Says:

    and don’t even get me started on “racial gerrymandering” in US elections, and “school districting”. US is still having issues with those.

    Some of the solutions seemed to have caused more problems than they are worth.

    Supreme Court Justice O’Connor, who retired last year (?), once wrote that she expects that this type of solutions for racial inequality should last no more than 50 years (2 generations).

    By silence in the followup, she implied that if US has not cured its racial inequality in 50 years under these solutions, there are deeper problems involved, that the government cannot solve.

    *China has a general poverty problem, Every ethnicity is poor on the average. It would be a mistake to call it a “racial/inequality inequality” problem.

    and the solution to China’s poverty is economic development.

    If Xinjiang is NOT developed, while the rest of China is, then we would have a “racial/ethnic inequality” problem in China in 50 years.

  36. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Think Ming,

    “Rather than obfuscating things further could we just agree that the 只限汉族 job adverts are blatantly discriminatory?”

    Depends on the reasons and the jobs. Again, there might be valid religious reasons.

  37. Think Ming! Says:

    Oh deary me Raventhorn, we seem to be going in a giant circle. . . Anything to deny the existence of Han on Uighur discrimination!

    Oh, some 汉族 are Muslim by the way.

  38. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Think Ming,

    You are not disputing facts.

    “Segregation” is not de facto “discrimination”

    “Oh, some 汉族 are Muslim by the way.”

    Yes, most are not. But neither are most Uighurs willing to work in non-Halal restaurants. What’s your point?

  39. Think Ming! Says:


    What’s my point?!?

    My point is that there is a BLATANTLY OBVIOUS DIFFERENCE between a restaurant advising job-seekers that its kitchen is not Halal, and the same restaurant advising job-seekers that ethnicities other than Han Chinese will not be employed.

    What part of my point is difficult to grasp?

    Why you are determined to paint this blatantly obvious discrimination (whoops ‘discrimination’) as the more benign sounding segregation I have no idea.

    It must also suck to be a Mongolian or Khazak reading these 只限汉族 job adverts. . .

  40. Nimrod Says:

    Extending on Steve #30:

    I think it’s fair to say that if you air-dropped non-mainstreamed minority into inland China or any Han-dominated region of China, they would for all practical purposes be like foreigners… at least they would feel that way. Maybe they have it worse than foreigners since foreigners that come to China seem to be fairly privileged in many ways, and also have a home country to go to, whereas their home is … China. Let’s be perfectly candid, as the Han-dominated people, economy, culture, and ideas move into what were traditionally ethnic regions, people there will not feel very good, it’s as if they are all being airdropped into inland China. Without any notion of blame or discussing whys and hows, it is instructive to plainly recognize the existence of this phenomenon.

    Now, “a foreigner in one’s own homeland” is a saying often used by true separatists, where “homeland” is East Turkestan or Tibet or some such, but consider the frustrated minority who actually considers the “homeland” to be China, all of it — since after all she is born in China and socialized as a Chinese citizen. Yet, the phrase could well remain true for her. That could get pretty sad. There are only two roads. Either (1) the differences between them and mainstreamed Chinese (of which most are Han) must narrow, or (2) mainstreamed Chinese must learn to be accepting of people who are quite different as “Chinese” — this could even have implications for foreigners and naturalization… it’s a thesis worth considering going forward. In any case, (1) or (2), the process needs to be managed and requires active intervention from the government. It cannot just sit around hoping things will go the right way.

    With this in mind, I think the many people on the net who lay blame on Hu Yaobang’s ethnic policy reform have it half right. Hu Yaobang relaxed ethnic identity and self expression in China. That means he either did not choose (1) or believed (1) will be the eventual outcome regardless or somehow believed ethnic identity could be contained to one region. In the first case, he did not provide for the necessary “ethnic reform” directed at mainstreamed Chinese that is the other half of (2), namely, inculcating them with an expanded meaning of what it means to be Chinese in a fundamentally unprecedented way. In the second case, he misjudged the ferocity with which national identity would arise among different people once unleashed and affect the whole country. With hindsight of the Soviet Union, the Balkans, and even among Han in Taiwan, we have a better picture now, but we have not generated better responses yet. In some ways, we’re still at the cross roads trying to choose between (1) and (2). Meanwhile the ethnic problem is here, like it or not.

  41. wukong Says:

    @raven #17:

    Good thing that was an American teacher. If she were a Han, then it would be serious case of cultural insults and religious sacrilege. I wouldn’t rule out a serious food fight or holy brawl by deeply offended Uighurs.

  42. Shane9219 Says:

    @Nimrod #40

    Any discussion of Hu Yaobang era ethnic policy has no real impact on current ethnic problem, and finger-pointing can make things even worse.

    During the past 30 years, especially the last 20 years, China’s economy composition has changed a lot, now that private business of large and small takes a big share. The issue of how to protect minority interests become tricky, so a simple enforcement of ethnic policy devised by central government is not enough :

    1) Small private businesses run by Hans can be hyper competitive with good business network inland
    2) While local ethnic businesses may be good at their traditional lines of work, they have a hard time to expand into newer types of business, except tourism and hospitality
    3) Government nowadays has very loose control over collective business or SOEs. These large business try ways to avoid social responsibility
    4) Xinjiang has many special SOEs (such as oil field and refinery) and BinTuan, these business entities are governed by special policies designed for border region security concern

    In my view, serious work is needed to improve the economy share of minorities

    1) Ask private business to take more social responsibility
    2) Assist and promote local ethnic business to become more competitive
    3) Better training of rural migrant farmers

  43. Nimrod Says:


    Your last three points are the kind of things that I meant as what the government could do. I didn’t intend to finger point, but rather to argue that the kind of “ethnic policies” as begun in the 1980, directed mostly at minorities rather than taking the whole country into account, are at most a stopgap measure (like most reforms from that time) that has become insufficient. Just like economic reform, this aspect needs to move forward and adapt to today’s China as well.

  44. Nimrod Says:

    Speaking of other minorities in Xinjiang, here is a video of Kazakh students at Central Nationalities University.


  45. JXie Says:

    Damn, nobody among those Kazakhs looks like Borat. How come?

    Think Ming #25, let’s just say your grand entrance didn’t win you many friends. When you are calm and less edgy, you actually write interesting stuffs, but unfortunately it seems like your reputation precedes them. Take that big chip off your shoulder already… Hey, what’s the “Think Ming!” handle mean?

  46. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Nimrod #40:
    nice post. Of the two choices, i think #2 is superior. I think it’s better to have a larger umbrella, under which you are able to celebrate differences while recognizing commonalities, than to try to forcefully minimize differences and try to squeeze more and more people under the same unyielding umbrella. Surely, if China is to take pride in her 56 ethnicities, it makes no sense to try to make the other 55 simply become more and more similar to the dominant one.

    To JXie:
    …and I wonder how many Austrians look like Bruno…
    Great point about Think Ming…i think some people are reflexively voting not based on what’s being said, but who is saying it.

  47. Think Ming! Says:

    @ JXie 45,

    What does “Think Ming!” mean?

    Think Ming reflects the idea 思明, as in 思明州 – the name Koxinga gave to Xiamen when it served as his base for anti-Qing resistance.

    Why do we all need to Think Ming?

    1 – Because unlike today’s xenophobic Chinese nationalists, Koxinga was a true Chinese patriot. He was half Japanese but fought against the foreign invaders to the end, even after the Ming cause appeared lost. He was the real thing, not some pretender. Of course today he would probably be labeled a ‘foreign anti-China force fomenting splittism’. Thinking Ming reminds us that the greatest Chinese patriots are likely to be foreigners like myself.

    2 – In Thinking Ming, we remember that the Qing were Manchurian invaders who made Chinese second class citizens in their own country. When we Think Ming we naturally ask ourselves why the modern Chinese nation needs to cling so irrationally to the borders of a Manchurian empire.

    3 – Thinking Ming reminds us to support even those causes that appear hopeless, and to always think outside the box. Take Taiwan as an example. Just as back in Koxinga’s day, Taiwan now represents that glimmer of hope on the ocean of despair. Taiwan could easily be extinguished, but for as long as that glimmer of hope burns, we can dream about a purer, freer and better China. People can be Chinese without following everything ridiculous dictate from Beijing, and just possibly ignoring Beijing can make people better at being Chinese. The powers that be should be relentlessly questioned.

    4 – By Thinking Ming, we give a little nod to the indisputable fact that the best Chinese come from the South. Southerners have always been outwards looking, engaging in the rest of the world through trade, and contributing massively to the history and culture of SE Asia. Despite being outwards looking, Southerners speak fully Chinese languages like Hokkien, Cantonese and Hakka, while Northerners speak a sort of bastardized Chinese-for-dummies that is practically atonal. This is no real surprise, since Northerners are semi-civilized half-breeds who live in horrible arid dust bowls and cook the crappiest food imaginable. Back in the Tang Dynasty northern China was probably habitable, but things have changed a bit. Perhaps Xiamen is not the perfect location for the capital of China, but the capital should be relocated at least as far south as Nanjing. Ordinary Chinese should band together to bulldoze the Forbidden City and write thank you notes to the foreign powers that burned the Imperialist Manchurian Summer Palace!

    5 – Because Thinking Ming is just fun, and makes mindless nationalist drones uncomfortable.

  48. Shane9219 Says:

    @Think Ming! #47

    Really funny and certainly weird thoughts from you. No Chinese would think the way you did, I can assure you. So you are making a fool out of yourself.

  49. Think Ming! Says:

    Oh no! I think I’m going to cry. . .

  50. Think Ming! Says:

    I really am getting persecuted here. . . Some cyber-bully is going around voting down all my posts to try and make them unreadable.

    At 47 I just politely took the time to try and answer Jxie’s question at 45. I could have spent the time doing something more productive like making money. Cyber-bullies going around sabotaging my efforts is kind of annoying.

    And really, on this Xinjiang issue I have only gone out of my way to argue for a little more rationalism and balance. I am hardly trying to inflame things. I don’t understand the relentless persecution.

  51. raventhorn4000 Says:

    “By Thinking Ming, we give a little nod to the indisputable fact that the best Chinese come from the South.”

    I think you are being a bit of a racist.

  52. raventhorn4000 Says:


    “Good thing that was an American teacher. If she were a Han, then it would be serious case of cultural insults and religious sacrilege. I wouldn’t rule out a serious food fight or holy brawl by deeply offended Uighurs.”

    Yes, I think she has dispelled some of the myths of Uighur Han living environment in Xinjiang.

    I get the clearer picture that there are significant amount of “voluntary segregation” going on in Xinjiang.

    1 note: In a pure “race quota” system, an institution is allowed to make advertisement for specific ethnic groups, to replace a specific ethnic shortage.

    For example: if work place had 1 ethnic minority, and 7 Han, if 1 Han quit, the quota system allows for replacement for the Han worker, to maintain the quota ratio.

  53. Think Ming! Says:

    @ Raventhorn 51,

    I’m only being a racist if you think Northerners and Southerners are different races.

  54. siewchoon Says:

    Democracy can be a double-edged sword,but this is not the point here.

    2 person are killed and there is no clear explanation given. Official response is just too sketchy and vain, Han demand truth, just like Uighur demand truth.

    In this case, I think what important is the mutual understanding and compassion.

    子曰: 性相近,習相遠。
    People are born with similiar nature, what make us different are our habits, the environment, the culture etc.
    Just then we all forget this, and too use to ostracize others (intentionally or unintentionally) .

    We must learn to understand others regardless of races or whatsoever.

    This is taught by Confucius long ago.


  55. foobar Says:

    Oh great, I might have just thrown up a bit in my mouth.

  56. wukong Says:

    rough translation :

    eyewitness account of rioters chasing and hacking residents.

    On July 13th between 2:30pm and 3:00pm, an imam was leading prayers for about 150 Muslims (in a mosque). A man in his 30s stood up and approached the podium, trying to take the microphone from the imam. He was immediately stopped.

    A couple of minutes later, he stood up again, this time holding a banner and yelling “Jihad! Jihad! Follow me if you will!”, urging people to follow him to the streets.

    The imam decided immediately the prayer meeting was over, and firmly told him;”we won’t follow you! get out!”. Others in the prayer want no part in it either, and demand him be expelled.

    Right then, he and two people who were standing next to him each produced a blade knife of about 1 meter long, attempting to force others to go along.

    The mosque security guards intervened to stop them, while other worshipers ran scared and scattered. The 3 perpetrators began chasing the guards and others while wielding their knives. One guard was chased down to a nearby lane, where he met police officers who happen to be patrolling there, and he notified them the situation.

    Police tried to control the situation but met resistance, warning shots were fired but it’s ineffective. Police then shot dead 2 perps, injuring the 3rd one.

    The security guard (a uighur) said he wanted to lead the perps away from worshipers, so they won’t be harmed:”Thanks police for the timing rescue, you save our lives.”

    The imam’s outraged, he said the 3’s acts are “a disrespect to Allah”. He said he never met those 3 before, and from their accents, they aren’t locals.

    http://www.sina.com.cn 2009年07月14日22:23 新华网

      干扰礼拜活动 追砍信教群众——清真寺目击者讲述乌鲁木齐解放南路暴力事件经过

      新华网乌鲁木齐7月14日电(记者顾钱江、刘兵) 据乌鲁木齐警方透露,3名暴徒13日下午在乌鲁木齐解放南路一清真寺干扰正常礼拜活动并举刀企图挟持信教群众未果后,又追杀信教群众和清真寺保安。民警鸣枪示警无效后,击毙2人、击伤1人。









  57. Steve Says:

    @ wukong: Thanks for the translation. I was curious about the knives being one meter long. That’s not a knife, that’s a sword or machete. Was that translated correctly? There is no way three guys can bring one meter long swords into a mosque without everyone noticing.

    I also wonder about the shots fired in the air. If a policeman is attacked by three guys with swords, he’s not going to shoot in the air since he’d be dead before he got the next shot off. He’d shoot at the guys with swords. I wonder if that wasn’t added later to make it seem like the policemen were trying their best to avoid violence. All I know is that I would never fault a policeman for firing at a guy charging him with a sword.

  58. foobar Says:

    The original text says knives/blades of over half a meter long. The translation may be a bit off.

    In this video presumably a reporter asked a bystander how many shots were fired. The voice says about 7 or 8.

    Another report says the security guard being chased was a former track athlete, and that the suspects also injured another Uyghur during the chase (–this is actually mentioned in the link wukong provided. I probably read it too fast).

  59. wukong Says:

    The article says “half a meter long” knife, not a meter long. I read it in a hurry as a “meter long” and wrongly translated it.I did the translation on the fly, so pardon my error.

    I don’t see much error with the “warning shot” translation but the wording could be improved.

    Clearly you have much to learn about Chinese policing. Police usually don’t carry guns, police shooting is very rare and quite a serious matter. Police only shoot when they get clear authorization, usually beforehand, from above. You might be surprised to know a PAP squadron leader was beaten to death by “peaceful protesters”. stuff like this would never happen in LA or NY.

    Back to the article…

    I hope someone will do a better and more accurate translation and put it up as a separate thread. Because as far as I know, this is the only article that talks about the specifics of the shooting, and English blogshphere or press haven’t caught up with it yet. I am sure lots of people were wondering what the heck exactly happened and are hungry for details. FM would do many people and itself a favor by being first getting this piece of information out.

  60. Charles Liu Says:

    Steve, if you read the news report in Chinese it’s a lot more sensical:

    – the word “刀” can mean “knife” or “blade”.

    – the story mentions how the police outside the mosque ran towards the men, it is entirely reasonable for the police to fire warning shots to get them to drop the weapon, don’t you think?

    Here’s another version of the same story:


    It appears there were three 1/2 meter long knives, and the iman of the mosque was interviewed.

    Steve, I think three commenters independently verifying this story for you really shows the problem is not the authenticity of the story.

  61. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Think Ming:

    “I’m only being a racist if you think Northerners and Southerners are different races.”

    No, you are a racist because you make it sound like Northerners and Southerners are different races, and “Southerners” are “best”.

  62. wukong Says:

    Is there anyone here who knows Italian?

    A Guardian reader left this interesting comment about a Kadeer interview, I’d like to know if it’s true or a link to the original article.



  63. wukong Says:


    14 Jul 09, 6:02pm (about 3 hours ago)

    I doubt that the Chinese government is entirely without blame in all this, but just for the record, this is Rebiya Kadeer interviewed by the not exactly pro-Chinese La Stampa (Italy), 8 May 2009.

    “You see, you gesticulate like me, you have the same white skin as I do: you are an Indo-European. Would you like to be oppressed by a communist with yellow skin?”

  64. huaren Says:

    Hi Nimrod, #40,

    Excellent post.

    “In any case, (1) or (2), the process needs to be managed and requires active intervention from the government. It cannot just sit around hoping things will go the right way.”

    I am really curious which you think is best – (1) or (2).

    S.K. Cheung, #46, argued for (2). Sounds reasonable to me, and I think that seems to be the prevailing “theme” in the USA.

    You see all the inter-racial marriages (Steve an example here), relative “peace” between different ethnic groups, and general harmony that exists, then the USA is absolutely kicking butt in this department. This is a melting pot the world can look up to.

    On the other hand, judging from how Americans in general view the world (from its media), I think Americans are still extremely racist. In terms of the “underground” racism in the USA – I read an article where they cited a study (probably by a Harvard professor) where if you apply for a job, and your name is not “white” sounding, your resume is automatically not considerred for more than 50% of the time.

    People basically need to recognize this is a work in progress. Despite ideals of “democracy”, “human rights”, and what not, and even with the best of examples, the USA, its made great progress and yet still have lots of room for improvement. Do not pin different expectations for China.

    Back to the previous op-ed piece posted here by Allen from WSJ, and the “active intervention” part per Nimrod, I think:

    1. Nadeer, if she’s found guilty of inciting racial violence in Xinjiang, then she should be punished. The Chinese government should quietly find a way to put an end to WUC – or get themselves good at shutting down such nonsense whereever they exist.

    2. For “free” media like WSJ to “promote” Nadeer’s view and not offer the “pro-China” side is adding fuel to this ethnic issue. Yes, I understand its capitalistic media, but I believe they should be responsible.

    China should absolutely not allow these media into the Chinese market until they can prove themselves responsible.

    If you think about it – for WSJ to publish the most extremist views like Nadeer’s is insane. I am sure there are tons of alternative yet more moderate and objective views it could pick from.

    3. Guess what? Now that the violence has subsided, the Chinese (all the ethnicities) are going to have to pick up the pieces and move forward from where they are now.

    For those “human rights” types:

    For me, they are only credible if they can prove they are not going to do more harm to the ethnicity issue. If they cannot prove it, they should stay the heck out. Given how quickly violence and misunderstanding can escalate (and peace and harmony could take eons to improve), those doing damage, regardless of intention, needs to be stopped.

  65. Steve Says:

    @ wukong: I appreciated your translation and believe I did not stress that strongly enough. I wasn’t doubting its authenticity or accuracy, just a couple of the details. There’s a big difference between 1/2 meter and one meter when it comes to a knife.

    wukong, I lived in China and I’m as familiar as anyone else here with police tactics. But when there is a major riot a couple of days before, the leeway would be much greater for the police in this situation. I’m sure all the policemen were carrying guns and if not, that would have been a failure on the part of their superiors. I have no problem with their actions in killing these two men.

    @ Charles: I never questioned the authenticity of the story, just a couple of the details. I think it’d be normal for the police to fire warning shots if the men are running away, but not if the them were running at the police. If the men were running away and ignored the warning shots, then the police would have fired into their backs, which is aggressive but not immoral considering the situation. If the men had been running towards the police, they wouldn’t have had time to fire warning shots but would have fired at them, which is even more justified. Either way, the police certainly weren’t at fault. Per your article in the Straits Times:

    “The government’s statement and the Xinhua report conflicted with accounts by two Uighurs who said they witnessed the incident from 50 metres away and that three Uighur men had been trying to attack security forces. ‘They hacked at the soldiers with big knives and then they were shot,’ said one of the witnesses, who said the incident took place across the street from a mosque.”

    This Uyghur account justifies the actions of the police even further.

  66. Shane9219 Says:

    Finally, a more clear-headed report from AP. AP probably did the most reporting in Xinjiang, also the worst in my opinion.


    “Analysis: Income gaps, corruption fuel China riots”

  67. Shane9219 Says:

    @wukong #63

    Can you find out the original source, and translate it. We should use that to slap into Kadear’s face.

    I mentioned in a previous post that some Uighur intellectuals are both racist and ignorant that they see Han Chinese as Blacks internationally.

    Now that US has elected a black president, what they will think now?

  68. wukong Says:

    It’s not about slapping Kadeer’s face. I know she’s a liar and a terrible one at that, but I didn’t know she’s a racist also.

    As I said, the Guardian reader that comment and I re-posted it here. Like you, I am trying to find out the original source.

    I can find the paper’s website, unfortunately it’s in Italian.


    I was hoping someone here who knows Italian can help.

    The commentator left enough clue to pin down the exact article:

    it’s should be on the 8 May 2009 edition

  69. Charles Liu Says:

    Here’s a headline from an AP MSNBC report:

    Chinese police kill 2 protesters; lawyers warned

    Anyone wondering about the impartiality of our independent media – AP MSNBC called blade weilding attackers “protesters”. They’re probably “peaceful” if the knife thing wasn’t so obvious.

  70. Steve Says:

    @ Charles: You are right to say that the headline is nonsense, but don’t blame the AP report. That headline was generated by MSNBC, not AP. AP just wrote the article, and my initial scan did not catch them calling the two men “protesters”. Seems that headline was an MSNBC concoction.

  71. huaren Says:

    I agree too, this “protesters” label is essentially a lie – shame on MSNBC.

  72. Steve Says:

    Thanks for the comments about my post #30. But I don’t believe anyone caught my point. Whether we use “Uyghurs” or “Negroes” in those few paragraphs, the point I was trying to make was that only an African American who had lived through those days could give an accurate assessment of what life was like for people of his/her race. Anyone not experiencing what African Americans experienced might think they know, but they really don’t. So for them to offer all sorts of opinions on what life is really like seems strange since they really had no idea.

    It’s the same thing on this blog. I keep hearing all sorts of “educated” opinions on what life is like for Uyghurs, but unless you are Uyghur you really don’t know. Were those job advertisements racist? Ask a Uyghur. Do Uyghurs get treated differently because of their name or the look of their face? Ask a Uyghur. Do they have the same job opportunities if they have equal qualifications to a Han? Ask a Uyghur. I’m not a Uyghur so I have no idea, but neither are most if not all of the commentators here. Yet some seem awfully quick to declare they have a complete knowledge of what’s happening in a province they have never lived in and about a people they have had virtually no interaction with.

    The people least knowledgeable about African American life experiences and attitudes were white Americans before the time of desegregation. Today, the people least knowledgeable about Uyghur life experiences and attitudes are Han Chinese, since they are the dominant race over there. No one seems to want to acknowledge this. It’s not that anyone has bad intentions or doesn’t want peaceful relations between Han, Uyghur and every other minority group, but that many seem to think they already know everything there is to know about the situation. I feel that is naive so rather than automatically blaming outside influences, maybe it’d be better to ask actual Uyghur people living in Urumqi and listen with an open mind to what they have to say.

  73. raventhorn4000 Says:


    I have nothing but respect for the search of truth, (and learning from Uighurs about their life. and I do have an uncle who goes to Xinjiang regularly.)

    But I find that Western viewpoints on this issue is almost entirely transposed by your own comparisons of “historical tragedies” of your own countries.

    Why do you assume to project your own historical experiences onto China?

    If you wish to do such a projection, 1st we must assume that China is like the Slavery days of US, etc. But clearly, China is not. Uighurs and Hans were all poor. We were not 2 groups of people, with 1 dominant “haves” and the minority “have-nots”.

    *All too often, Western analysis of China are based upon such erroneous “self-projections”.

    (I’m not objecting to listening to Uighurs. I’m objecting to the Western assumptions that somehow Chinese DON’T listen to the Uighurs. On what basis for this assumption? Should we assume that US was not listening to African Americans just because of LA riot, and other riots?)

    I do not wish to compare West with China, but it seems the West cannot help itself to project its own shameful past onto China.

  74. huaren Says:

    Hi Steve, #72,

    “Today, the people least knowledgeable about Uyghur life experiences and attitudes are Han Chinese, since they are the dominant race over there.”

    I think that’s not a fair statement towards the Han Chinese. I’d think the people who know the Uyghur life experiences the best besides the Uyghur’s themselves are the Hans, Huis, and other ethnic Chinese living with them. Certainly people outside of China know the least, no?

    The key has to be could you point to any government policy that is racist? I don’t think China has gone as “low” as America did on the issue of race.

    “No one seems to want to acknowledge this. It’s not that anyone has bad intentions or doesn’t want peaceful relations between Han, Uyghur and every other minority group, but that many seem to think they already know everything there is to know about the situation. I feel that is naive so rather than automatically blaming outside influences, maybe it’d be better to ask actual Uyghur people living in Urumqi and listen with an open mind to what they have to say.”

    That’s fair. I think the Uyghur’s, Huis, Hans, and other Chinese need to sit down and work things out.

    I didn’t mean to automatically blame outside influences. I believe China has ethnic and prejudice problems just as in every society. I whitness some of this personally some times when I am in China.

    For those doing the criticizing, they ought to come up with recommendations on how Chinese society could improve – not to tell lies and make false accusations.

    To me, as long as the lies and false accusations continue to exist, that continues to create problems.

  75. raventhorn4000 Says:

    Of course,

    if one must project, US is like the modern day Mongol Horde.


  76. JXie Says:

    Don’t know Italian myself but after playing around with machine translation a bit, here is what I found:

    The source in which Kateer said: ““You see, you gesticulate like me, you have the same white skin as I do: you are an Indo-European. Would you like to be oppressed by a communist with yellow skin?” is here in La Stampa. In Italian: “lo vedi, tu gesticoli come me, hai la mia stessa pelle bianca: sei indoeuropea, vorresti essere oppressa da un comunista con la pelle gialla?”

    Uln wondered why it took such a short time to have that many people killed that day in Urumqi. I think we may have an answer. Just to see who these people are: a case of wikipedia shenanigan. In itself is more comical than anything considered the world we live in 2009, but it’s quite telling who these people are…

  77. raventhorn4000 Says:

    No, Say it ain’t so, Kadeer.

    “Yellow Communist”?!

    I guess if we are going for collateral skin matters, she’s not just a “terrorist”, she’s a “White Supremist Terrorist”.

  78. Think Ming! Says:

    @ Jxie 76,

    I don’t get the link between the arguments about the blonde girl on Wikipedia and the numbers killed in Wulumuqi. Can you explain?

    As for blond Uighurs, while not typical you see the occasional one.

    For real freak factor though I met a Han girl in Gansu who had red hair and grey eyes. That was weird.

  79. JXie Says:

    Think Ming,

    Reading through the whole thing including the back and forth about the picture, it shows some of them (actually seemingly not all Uighurs) want to make Uighurs as more European-looking than they actually are. Most Uighurs to me look kind of mixture between East Asians and Middle Easterners. But anyway, supressing the obvious and purposely playing down or even denying one type of outward appearance is a form of subconscious hatred, if we pretend we are psychologists for a minute, don’t you think?

    BTW, there are some other smaller ethnic groups in Xinjiang with more Germanic/Slavic type of look than average Uighurs, such as Russian, Tajik and Tartar.

  80. Nimrod Says:

    Think Ming! Says:

    For real freak factor though I met a Han girl in Gansu who had red hair and grey eyes. That was weird.
    And that’s called being albino, isn’t it?

  81. Think Ming! Says:


    But how do you get from the photograph argument to the killings in the Wulumuqi riot? The subconscious hatred explains it all? Like you just said, the Wikipedia contributors arguing about this photo likely as not have never even been to Xinjiang. I doubt many of the Uighurs out killing Han last week would have cared much about the photo debate.

    As for the other minorities, the Tajiks and Tartars I’ve seen looked pretty much like regular Uighurs. I never met any that stood out as being radically different. Mind you, I never met many full stop so I know little about them.

    Of course Uighurs themselves are also a very mixed bag in terms of appearance, and can be anything from dark and ‘Indian’ looking to blond and fair skinned. Of course the most common look is, as you say, a sort of Middle-Eastern/Asian mix.

  82. S.K. Cheung Says:

    To Steve #72:
    could not agree more. I’ve suggested before on various Tibetan threads that if one were to want to understand Tibetan grievances, to know of Tibetan desires and priorities, etc etc (with the notable exception of the very select few who have actually walked the walk), it would be best to ask a Tibetan. And as I also suggested elsewhere, “Tibetan” could be replaced for any minority experience, and I think the principle, in general, would hold true. So I do find it curious that so many on this board are more than willing to offer up the minority perspective, for which, for the vast majority, they appear to do so without much basis.

    I don’t dispute Huaren’s assertion that the Han living side by side with Uyghurs may have some understanding of the Uyghur experience. Heck, some of those very same Han may be active contributors to said experience. But there’s still a finite difference between being a bystander to it, versus being on the receiving end of it.

    I also agree with Huaren that China is not alone when it comes to having ongoing inter-racial/ethnic/minority challenges. Like other things, she requires a solution that serves her unique circumstances. But as I’ve also suggested before, one can’t solve a problem until one first acknowledges its existence. This distinction seems to escape some, though thankfully not all, people on this board.

  83. ed Says:

    What’s with Shane? he seems to framing China in a mind just like an American Liberal.

  84. huaren Says:

    Hi S.K. Cheung, #82,

    I agree – for those who are sincere in helping solve these types of problems, they should talk to the minorities. I’d say they should also talk to the Hans, Huis, etc. whose perspectives are also important. After that, with sincerity, try to help in a non-divisive and constructive way such that everyone can agree to move forward on.

  85. ed Says:

    @ Huaren – I agree with you.

    It would be better for those who live in Xinjiang or from China should handle it, we don’t know enough about China and we are not from their society.

    More important our judgments and ideas are learned from our own societies and the Chinese society differs.

    We can only piece together parts of what we have been told or given.

  86. Shane9219 Says:

    @ed #85

    Sound like you are not from China, so it is good for you to take sideline and watch.

    This forum are shared by people from China, oversea Chinese and non Chinese alike, even China haters (quite a few I would say)

  87. Alessandro Says:

    @ Wukong #62
    I’m actually Italian and I think I can help u..
    Sorry, I didn’t have time to check if someone already translated it in the meantime (I’ve only seen ur comment on the La Stampa interview with Kadeer today), but yes, according to that interview Rebiya Kadeer actually said that. Here is that passage of the article: “Mentre parla allunga le dita sottili, si scuote le tradizionali lunghe trecce brizzolate, ti tocca il viso, «lo vedi, tu gesticoli come me, hai la mia stessa pelle bianca: sei indoeuropea, vorresti essere oppressa da un comunista con la pelle gialla?».
    Which means exactly: While she’s speaking she reaches out her thin fingers, jiggles her traditional long graying braids, touches your face, “You see? You gesticulate like me, you have the same white skin I have: you’re Indo-European, would you like to be oppressed by a yellow skinned communist?”

    Actually La Stampa as a whole is quite “anti-chinese” as many italian newspapers, but its correspondent from China, Francesco Sisci, is a sinologist and a very objective and knowledgeable journalist…One of the very few (if there’re any) professional italian correspondents from China (and to understand what I’m talking about, you should read the articles from Federico Rampini of La Repubblica…one of the worst of the lot. Ignorant, plainly anti-chinese etc. etc. It’s a real pity he works for what is the second most important daily newspaper in Italy).
    The Kadeer interview was not by Sisci, of course, but some Antonella Rampino, whom I do not know.

    Here’s the entire interview in Italian, I’m sorry but I don’t have the time right now to translate it all…If u have any further question about it let me know…


  88. rolf Says:

    Discussion between Evgeny Morozov and Ethan Zuckerman (Global Voices Online) about recent events in Iran and China:

    Why did Iran dominate twitter but Urumqi not?


    “Evgeny Morozov, originally from Belarus, is a fellow at the Open Society Institute in New York and serves on the board of OSI’s Information Program. He is currently at work on a book about the impact of the Internet on global politics, with a particular focus on authoritarian states.” http://neteffect.foreignpolicy.com

  89. raventhorn4000 Says:

    I would suggest that too many in the West have failed to acknowledge their own simplistic assumptions of “interracial issues”.

    Analysis laced with erroneous concepts like “monolithic China” are nothing more than heckler calls from cheap seats.

  90. Alessandro Says:

    I just finished translating from Italian that La Stampa’s interview to Rebiya Kadeer….Hope it could be an interesting example of that sort of “epic aura” that so often the west likes to bestow on people like “lady” Kadeer…

    “Gentleness is killing us”. The Uygur pasionaria: “Beijing’s sweet words are deceiving, in this way they are erasing us”. Xinjiang Turks’ leader says.

    If she knew Dante Alighieri, certainly Rebiya Kadeer would make Alighieri’s famous verse “Amor che a nullo amato amar perdona…” [roughly meaning “Love does not allow anyone who’s been loved not to love back”] her own. The PR people call her “The gentle warrior”, “The Uygur’s Dalai Lama”, as it’s also written on the title and subheading of the fascinating biography just published by Corbaccio Publishing. She serapichally smiles about her 62 adventurous years spent defending her own ethnic group; laugh about her oppressed life, from farmer to billionairess, and from billionairess to victim of persecution as the leader of the resistance, now exiled in Fairfax, Virginia.
    She smiles talking about those 8 millions ethnic Turkic [in Italian the old noun “Turcomanno” is used, not very much in use nowadays] “that Stalin sold to China at Yalta, creating Xinjiang”. “We’re all gentle warriors, our national character is sweet, we know that violence only produces other violence, and that only freedom produces freedom”. Even Uygur’s Islam is the sweet Islam of the beginnings, “There’s no fundamentalism to be found among us”.
    Kadeer learned by heart Koran’s verses when she was twelve, then at fourteen she married her first husband, she later left him and chose another one, and had eleven between sons and daughters – all of them persecuted by the Chinese regime, like she also was. While she speaks, she reaches out her thin fingers, jiggles her traditional long graying braids, touches your face, “You see? You gesticulate like me, you have the same white skin I have: you’re Indo-European, would you like to be oppressed by a yellow skinned communist?”.
    Kadeer says that “the Chinese are gentle, but falsely so, they also pretend to be democratic: the world must understand this, China pretends, China isn’t democratic, until it won’t aknowledge our rights, let us speak our language, cultivate our own traditions, and let us freely go and be back with the passports we are still denied today, no country in the world will be safe”. The United Nations, she states, “are not enough: with us, Uygurs, the UN are very gentle, but it’s the same kind of gentleness of the Chinese”. In the meantime China continues its forced migration politic, the forced abortion even at the ninth month, “and the Chinese don’t give us jobs cause, like on of our old sayings states, “it’s with a full stomach than u can think about freedom”. She smiles when someone talks to her about “Uyguristan” – with the same suffix “stan” with which, according to the latest fashion in use among “geopolitics’ sages”, whom do not really know how else to define them, is labelled each and every region belonging to hellish area that goes from the Caucasus to Mongolia.
    “We’re Turkic, the name Eastern Turkestan is perfect: we’ll have an Uyguristan only when the Chinese will have recognized our freedom, we don’t ask for independence”. She doesn’t like to be compared to the Dalai Lama, “my personal model is Gandhi, whose fight started from nothing, who liberated India from the British, and who practiced passive resistance”. Not the Dalai Lama, the Dalai Lama is a king, “everyone owes him respect cause of it, he didn’t need to do anything to earn it”. Kadeer, instead, believes like the Mahatma that an exemplary testimony could make a revolution, and it’s for this exact reason that her name has for many years been on the list of the nominees for the Nobel Prize for Peace. Her life, for example. Which had a surprising goal: a shopping center. “It was created defying everything and everyone, the Chinese regime as well as my beloved second husband, because I knew it would have helped us to rewrite the destiny of my people”. As in the script of a typical western tale of self-made success, “to us, Uygurs, it’s forbidden to become rich and influential”. And after that, a resistance movement remotely guided through You Tube, Internet and every possible weird contraption the Net has to offer. “Messages travel for thousand of kilometres, get to my land, are spread across the countryside, the valleys, the mountains in the form of litanies, or dances, or poetries. They are songs in which nobody ever mentions my name, but they’re the messages of the mother of all Uygurs”. Amor che a nullo amato amar perdona, exactly!

  91. Steve Says:

    Thanks for the translation, Alessandro. I know it took a lot of time and effort and we all appreciate it!

  92. Alessandro Says:

    Thanks Steve, you’re welcome. It took some time but it was my pleasure doing it…I think it can be interesting and also productive to see how media in the west work, also those in non-english speaking countries…I’d like to let u all see some of Rampini “dirty work”, just to let u understand how bad the situation can be on many mainstream media here…Let’s see if I’ll have time I’ll post it:)

  93. Wahaha Says:

    “Gentleness is killing us”.

    “We’re all gentle warriors, our national character is sweet, we know that violence only produces other violence, and that only freedom produces freedom”.

    “my personal model is Gandhi, whose fight started from nothing, who liberated India from the British, and who practiced passive resistance”.

    Hence here comes the Gandhi’s way :


    (Note : this site is from an anti-CCP website.)


    This is 冉云飞’s blog :





  94. raventhorn4000 Says:


    A bit too rhetorical.

    Of course all criminals and crimes are caused by other societal ills.

    All we have to do is get rid of Poverty, Religion, and Politics. Then no one would have any reasons to hate another human being.

    That makes a good John Lennon song, not so much for reality.

    and Gandhi deals within the restraints of the imperfections of his country. He started famously with a speech, to acknowledge the poverty of his countrymen.

    Gandhi would not be cowardly enough to go into “exile”.

  95. foobar Says:

    Footage of 7/13 incident:

    The three men were seen bringing a huge sack into the mosque and urging the worshipers to go out demonstrating. They also tried to distribute weapons out of the sack, which failed. They then took blades (not much shorter than 1 meter) out of the sack and started going after people.

    In the shooting scene, apparently warning shots were fired first. Then the three perps were shot at and hit while chasing the police. At least one of them continued chasing even after being shot, and were fired at again.

  96. 洪军 Says:


  97. 洪军 Says:


  98. Charles Liu Says:

    (Translation of comment 97 from a Chinese blogger:)

    “To those who dream of Tibet or Xinjiang independence… keep dreaming!

    In reality even among you, there’s a realization it is impossible! All you’re doing is making a living! If you don’t do your best to scream blood in front of your American masters, they won’t give you money, haha.

    The PRC military is no slouch, when your American masters make a mistake, you will start looking back at the Korean War!

    Let me tell you, China is no Iraq, if Americans are ever tired of living and confront us, we will follow you down the path of destruction!”

    (My comment:)

    Well done NED, kudos Mr. Gershman. You want to fund a “string of pearls” with these dissidents to pressure China in the name of democracy, but all you’ve done is make the CCP more popular, and pissing off a billion people who might have valued democracy at some point.

    Truth be told, Mr. Gershman, if you had your way – the CCP gone, Tibet/Xinjian independent, transitional Falun Gong theocratic government – you wouldn’t know what to do with a billion people dying and suffering from statelessness.

  99. raventhorn4000 Says:

    I guess, it’s time to “address the Genuine grievances of the Chinese people” against the Western display of “racism” and “genocide”.

  100. Wukailong Says:

    @Charles (#98): I mostly agree with this… Not just NED, but many actions of the US have estranged China and made it less interested in democracy. Any change in any country must be firmly rooted in local wishes.

    Just don’t be too polemical – if Gershwin seriously wants a FLG theocratic government, then please provide a link. I’m curious. 😉

  101. 洪军 Says:

    Charles Liu: How are you!
    thank you for your translation! I’ve read your translation carefully! thank you again!

  102. Charles Liu Says:

    Wukailong, it’s no joke, NED is lining up Falun Gong with China Democracy Party, the same way it did with Ahmed Chalabi.

    They are already planning to take over for the CCP after the CIA topples it:



    Future China Forum Invites Experts to Support Transitional Mainland …Future China Forum publicly announced on December 5, 2007 to establish a transitional Chinese government for the purpose of disintegrating the Chinese communist regime. The …


    The China Transitional Government Calls For Individual Land OwnershipIn the past month, about 40,000 farmers in China’s northeast Heilongjian Province started a movement to reclaim farm land that was illegally embezzled by the local government. The …

    (And yes, I am poking fun of the state of overseas Chinese dissident community.)

  103. 洪军 Says:

    As a Chinese youngman, I tell everyone here,, It is completely impossible to take over for CCP! It is just a joke! Don’t argue with me,,,no any chance!

  104. Steve Says:

    @ 洪军#103: I don’t think any of the regulars on this forum have ever espoused the overthrow of the CCP. Even the ones who complain about some of the government tactics and policies have said that to change governments would be catastrophic. Everyone sees China as evolving over time with no drastic changes. Sure, occasionally we get FLG practitioners on here and they go bananas about the government, but they only show up with FLG is mentioned and disappear for everything else. So no worries… 🙂

    @ Charles: Yes, I know you’re just poking fun but your post also illustrates that anyone can find just about any POV, either for or against China, for or against the USA, for or against the UK, for or for Sweden (no one seems to dislike WKL’s homeland), etc.

    Because world media is so diverse, it’s easy to poke fun at it. It contradicts itself. It consistently makes errors, as we’ve seen with some of the mislabeled photos they’ve run of the wrong events. But all this does is endlessly sidetrack every topic into which media source screwed up where. It’s ridiculously easy to find mistakes in US media, China media, UK media, Canadian media, Aussie media, etc. What does it prove? It proves that ALL media is sloppy, makes mistakes and has an inherent POV.

    I haven’t seen much interest in democracy on a national level in China. The interest I’ve seen is democracy on a local level, but one where those elected actually have the power to do something and people can throw out corrupt officials. There have been positive developments in that area, though scattered randomly throughout China. That’s a good sign.

    The Epoch Times? Aren’t you scraping the bottom of the barrel?? 😉

  105. raventhorn4000 Says:


    Present company excepted, this forum has been barraged by the “devotees” of Holy Western Media Empire.

    Hence, we are actively poking fun at all of them.

  106. 洪军 Says:

    @104. Steve: Hello, how are you?
    Thank you for your reply! haha~I just hate those rioters and their supporters…Wish you happy!
    My msn: wangyi16444@hotmail.com
    I am very glad to make friends with you!

  107. Wukailong Says:

    @Steve (#104): “either for or against China, for or against the USA, for or against the UK, for or for Sweden (no one seems to dislike WKL’s homeland), etc.”

    Actually, two groups dislike it: Finns in general and US conservatives. Finns because of historical reasons (Finland was controlled by Sweden since the 13th century) and conservatives because it’s an American nightmare come true: the bleeding heart liberals in control of a country.

    My problem with the country is mostly that it’s so collectivist – while people love pursuing their interests and being individualist at home, they’re afraid of doing anything that challenges status quo at work. Everybody just stays in line.

    Back to topic: yes, media is rarely to be trusted. In fact, I see little difference between Western medias or Chinese media in this regard. They work the same way, except that some news in China comes from the government and has to be reprinted without changes.

    Whenever I’ve known about a particular case in detail and later read the news about it, I’ve been able to spot errors every time. People complain about Wikipedia, but media has been this way for I don’t know how long.

  108. Otto Kerner Says:

    Quiet, Wukailong; I’ll brook no more mindless Western-media-worship of this sort out of you!

  109. Steve Says:

    @ Wukailong #104: Sorry I wrote such nice things about your country. I thought for sure that American conservatives gave your country a pass as long as you kept up the high standards on the Swedish bikini team. Next time I’ll blast Sweden to hell!! 😉

    I was in Border’s Bookstore the other day and was browsing through a book called “IV” by Chuck Klosterman, one of the most popular authors for the under 35 generation. He had a short intro where he talked about how media, when assigning him to write a piece, also gives him the angle or POV of that piece before the subject interview. He said that’s just how media works. In this particular piece, he asked about the angle and the editor told him there wasn’t any and to just wing it. He thought this was really cool since he could just go with the flow and then write the piece.

    I’ll try to find that intro and reprint it on FM once I do. I think it addresses many of the questions and critiques that have been written on this blog. Apparently this process is pretty universal regardless of the country, and fits into what we’ve both discovered when we’ve read pieces were knew something about, in that they had mistakes all over them. In the western media, the editor sets the POV while in Chinese media, the party sets the POV. It seems both are pre-set before the piece is written, so all of them have a planned bias. In fact, click on the link attached to Chuck Klosterman’s name and go to the second to last paragraph. I think that sums up our feelings pretty accurately.

  110. Charles Liu Says:

    Steve @ 104, feel free to twist my words to obfusicate the real issue.

    The fact remains that the NED is giving our tax dollars to Falun Gong, so they can hold these silly meeting to 1) generate any anti-China PR to influence domestic opinion, 2) to actually take over China if anything does happen (vis-a-vis Chalabi.)

    That is the point, not wether Falun Gong has any credibility.

  111. Wukailong Says:

    @Charles Liu (#102): Charles, the links you provided were both from the Epoch Times. As to the other links from the bing search, most of them were unrelated to the issue. If NED supports the ET (I’ll take your word for it), then what they do at most is to indirectly support this transitionary government, rather than Gershman personally looking for a theocratic government.

    I agree with your first point in 110 above, not the second point. But feel free to give sources for it, and I’ll change my mind.

    As for the whole thing with the transitionary government, it seems kind of bizarre and hard to take seriously. It is a bit like the FLG propaganda against the CCP in itself, which mirrors PRC propaganda quite closely (only one evil agent, this agent has done nothing good, etc). It’s even strangely written – who talks about “disintegrating” governments these days?

  112. Steve Says:

    @ Charles: If FLG has no credibility in China, then how can it be an issue? Sounds like more of a waste of money to me.

  113. Charles Liu Says:

    Wukailong @ 111, “who talks about “disintegrating” governments these days”

    Well, folks like NED don’t say it. They just pay someone else to say it.


    Steve @ 112, don’t be obtuse, the “domestic opinion” I’m refering to is OUR domestic opinion, not China’s.

  114. Wukailong Says:

    Is there some sort of tacit agreement here that all people are Americans? I’m wondering because Charles keep saying “we” all the time, and I don’t feel I represent the US or even agree with its policies all the time, to say the least…

    Also, Charles, can you please answer the question what you think about US policies in general, especially the war on terror and the war in Iraq. It would help me understand your viewpoints of China.

  115. Charles Liu Says:

    Wukailong, I’m American, and I am against war in Iraq or Afghanistan, or Iran, or North Korea, or China.

  116. raventhorn4000 Says:

    “You fell victim to one of the classic blunders! The most famous is never get involved in a land war in Asia, but only slightly less well-known is this: never go in against a Sicilian when death is on the line!”

    – Vizzini, “Princess Bride”, 1987.

  117. Cedrick Gehrig Says:

    Great blog! Sorry to get off subject, but I’m new to town and I’d like to find a great auto repair in Nashville TN. Have you read any recent buzz? There’s a new auto repair shop called Veterans Auto Services, but I’ve only seen a few reviews. Here’s the address of this new Nashville Auto Repair, Veterans Auto Services 2404 Cruzen St Nashville, TN 37211 (615) 712-9777. Thoughts? Thanks!


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