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Jul 09

I came across an Op-Ed in the WSJ by Rebiya Kadeer regarding the recent violence in XinJiang.  I thought it would be interesting to post them here for our discussion. Ms. Kadeer is the president of the Uighur American Association and World Uighur Congress.  Chinese authorities have accused Kadder of inflaming ethnic tensions in XinJiang and orchestrating the most recent riots.

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Jul 08


Note: This post is a selective and partial translation of an article written by a second generation Han “settler” born and raised in Xinjiang. That article is titled “一个兵团二代的网文:告诉你真实的乌鲁木齐” (A net article by a 2nd generation Bingtuan kid: let me tell you the real Urumqi). It is a long and detailed account of the author’s memory of growth of and growing up in Urumqi as well as his perspectives on when and how race relationship between Uighur and Han deteriorated. It is a highly recommended read.


Update: Tian, via a comment at Telegraph, provided a short summary of the article referred above. That summary is appended at the end of this post.

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Jul 06

Chinese media has been reporting what appear to be ethnically-motivated riots in Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang.  Xinhua reports that casualty may have reached 140, with more injured.

Western press have also latched onto the story. Here is the latest report from the Wall Street Journal. Continue reading »

Jul 06

( A short thesis exploring the problems and viability of implementing a democratic system from a developing country’s point of view. The thesis concludes with an introduction of an interesting hybrid system that seems to be taking shape in the ongoing political evolutionary process in China.
This article is the final part of the 2-part series on democracy, and was first published on Jun 3, 2009 on the following website : chinablogs.wordpress.com )

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Jul 03

Below is a video of a recent exchange between Niall Ferguson (of Harvard) and James Fallows (of the Atlantic) over the state of the relation between U.S. and China – and perhaps more importantly – over the future of that relationship (Aspen Ideas Festival). Continue reading »

Jul 02

Chan wrote the article, “Topics on Democracy (Part 1) — Democracy War Game,” and he argued that Britain purposefully created a “democratic” fervor in Hong Kong leading up to the 1997 hand-over.  I think it would be really interesting for all FM participants to answer this yes-no survey and see how everyone responds.
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Jul 01

Topics on Democracy (Part 1) — Democracy War Game

Written by: Chan | Filed under:culture, General, politics | Tags:, , , , ,
115 Comments » newest 2009-07-31 22:18:48

( This article was first published on May 23, 2009 on the following website : chinablogs.wordpress.com )
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*** ( Important : Please note that this article is NOT a rebuttal of Raj’s recent Democracy article. Nor has it anything at all to do with his article in any way. It is a pure coincidence that his article was published just before mine. It has always been my intention to transfer my articles from my site onto FM. And my Democracy 2-part series happens to be the next and last articles to be transferred. The readers should NOT view this article as a response to any previous articles on this FM site ) ***

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Jul 01

*** ( NOTE : This is an addition to the 2nd “follow-on” article I wrote recently. I would highly recommend you read that article first before starting this one if you haven’t already. The purpose of this article is to answer a couple of questions raised by some readers. ) *** ( click here to read that follow-on article )
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Jun 30

Honduras, Iran, and China

Written by: raventhorn4000 | Filed under:-guest-posts, General, politics | Tags:, , , ,
54 Comments » newest 2009-07-16 00:13:10

Honduran President was forced into Exile by a group of military soldiers who stormed his house and forced him onto a plane at gun point.

The reason? He tried to push for a referendum to extend his terms of office.

His replacement was quickly sworn in, but massive protests have broken out.

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had this to say:

“Our immediate priority is to restore full democratic and constitutional order in that country. As we move forward, all parties have a responsibility to address the underlying problems that have led to yesterday’s events, in a way that enhances democracy and the rule of law in Honduras.”

*I’m all in favor of “all parties” owning up responsibilities. But it seems, the Honduran ex-President didn’t do anything other than push for a vote by the People.

His replacement now calls it NOT as a Coup, but an Exile by “legal process”, that Zelaya was arrested by a process of law.

But that excuse is rather flimsy. If Zelaya committed a crime, he should be arrested and tried, and not “renditional Exiled” in his pyjamas to another country where he can’t even have a day in court.

So, I wonder why US is tip-toeing around this little coup, when it is so obvious.

But here some interesting factoids that might hint the US motives:

(1) Military leader for the coup was General Romeo Vasquez, a graduate of the infamous “School of Americas”, a US military training school for Latin American military dictators and human rights abusers.

(2) Newly installed Honduran President, Roberto Micheletti, was born in Italy, and technically, according to Honduran Constitution, cannot serve as President.

*What’s going to happen if Honduran protest turns bloody? Who will bear responsibility? Will Honduras have an Iranian Revolution? Or will the US trained Honduran General roll the tanks (BTW, they are already sitting at the Presidential Palace)?

Jun 28

What is democracy and how does it relate to China?

Written by: Raj | Filed under:Analysis, politics | Tags:, ,
150 Comments » newest 2009-07-11 21:02:50

It seems that “democracy” has been a hot-topic in political discussions about China in the last year. We’ve seen the Beijing Olympics, the creation of Charter 08, the publication of Zhao Ziyang’s memoirs and the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen protest crackdown. However, it seems that whilst people on both sides of the debate will stick to their positions with determination, relatively few actually discuss what democracy means and what the consequences are for China.

Elections are the most common aspect of democracy that people will point to, but clearly having elections alone are not reflective of democracy. Saddam Hussein allowed elections. It was just that he was the only candidate and the results were fixed (winning 100% of the vote with 100% turnout in 2002). Clearly, then, the elections must be free and fair, as well as open to a wide range of parties and candidates. But how can an election be free and fair if all the media attention, often because it is State-controlled, goes on one candidate? Or some candidates are harassed and/or subject to legal action simply to get them disbarred from running, as has happened in Singapore? Clearly the overall system must allow free and fair elections to happen.
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Jun 27

*** ( NOTE : This is the 2nd and last “follow-on” article of the parent artcle titled : Putting the Sichuan Quake into Perspective“. This 2nd “follow-on” article, like the 1st one, is NOT meant to be a stand-alone article. I would therefore highly recommend you read that article before starting this one. The parent article is only 1 page long, and should provide the context in which this article should be viewed ) *** ( click here to read the 1st article ) Continue reading »

Jun 25

U.S. national debt, China is not the issue

Written by: dewang | Filed under:General, media, politics | 71 Comments » newest 2010-07-06 08:05:26

As of today, the U.S. national debt is $11+ trillion.  When the U.S. media talk about this debt within the context of U.S.-China relations, they usually talk about trade imbalance, currency manipulation, and anxiety over whether China is going to dump her treasury holdings and trigger a collapse of the USD.

I’d like to share with you some graphs (based on numbers I got mostly through Wikipedia, and I believe their “ballpark” to be about right):
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Jun 24

The Green Dam controversy continues. Most recently, U.S. trade officials also seem to be getting into the act. The following is an excerpt from a recent WSJ report: Continue reading »

Jun 24

*** ( NOTE : This is a follow-on of the artcle titled : Putting the Sichuan Quake into Perspective“. This 2nd article is NOT meant to be a stand-alone article. I would therefore highly recommend you read that article before starting this one. The 1st article is only 1 page long, and should provide the context in which this article should be viewed ) *** ( click here to read the 1st article )
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Jun 23

minipost-India: Friend, Enemy, or Both?

Written by: Steve | Filed under:-mini-posts, News, politics | Tags:, , , , , ,
424 Comments » newest 2010-06-19 15:11:57

This article was printed in the People’s Daily on June 19th. Since this is a state controlled publication, whatever is published will usually have the blessing of the CCP leadership.

Chinese President Hu Jintao and India PM Manmohan Singh recently appeared together at the BRIC summit in Russia. Things seemed friendly enough at the time. What has changed since then? And why would China have a problem with the Asia Development Bank financing development projects in Arunachal Pradesh? I would think economic development in an area that China considers to be a part of her territory would be viewed by China in a positive manner, as it would be beneficial to the people of that region.

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Jun 22

i38_19379493 Events of the last week in Iran have been widely reported by the world press. Not long before, the press also reported on the 20th anniversary of the Tiananmen Square incident of 1989. Were these two distinct events reported in a similar manner or were they treated as different and unique events? Let’s take a look at each and see what we can find.

1) Who are the good guys and who are the bad guys?

Based on the coverage I’ve seen, both governments were cast as being in the wrong and both protest movements as in the right. In the case of China, the government sent in tanks and used live ammunition to break up a protest movement that was alleged to have turned violent. Most of the reporters in the world press were located in or near the same area, and their reports reflected what occurred in that vicinity. Analyzes of this event in most cases pointed to the government as the culprit and the demonstrators as being victims and responding in a suitable fashion. Is this an accurate assessment? The Chinese government attempted to confiscate film of the event from foreign sources but those attempts were successfully evaded in most instances.

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Jun 22

( Note : This is a re-post of the same article taken from the blogsite : chinablogs.wordpress.com dated May 10, 2009. You are most welcomed to give your feedback using the Comments section here or on my above blogsite. You may also find the comments and my feedback on the above blogsite interesting. It includes an interesting comment from an American with first hand experience of the quake. )

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Jun 19

It is often said that to be successful in the Chinese officialdom, you have to acquire a thick face, and a black heart (厚黑, there is an English book if you want to learn more about 厚黑学) .

Nine years ago, the director of Jiangsu Provincial Department of Construction, Xu Qiyao (徐其耀), was arrested  for taking bribes of over 20 million yuan. He also distinguished  himself among other corrupted officials by having extramarital affairs with 146 women,  including a mother and her daughter. Recently, a letter to his son, allegedly found in his diary during the investigation, is circulating on the internet.  In that letter, he demonstrated his theoretic superiority in the application of “thick face, black heart.”

Here is a translation for your enlightenment.

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Jun 16

China Internet

It seems the western media and Chinese blogosphere agree on one thing; Green Dam is not winning any popularity contests. Today, the Chinese government backed down on the mandatory usage of the software, though it will still come either pre-loaded or be included on a compact disc with all PCs sold on the  mainland from July 1st.

There are several problems associated with this software, each one an interesting topic in itself. I’d like to run down the issues associated with its release, one by one.

1) Why the sudden announcement of this invasive software with virtually no implementation time given to the manufacturers?
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Jun 04

On my way to school, I saw beautiful flowers

Written by: BMY | Filed under:politics | Tags:, ,
229 Comments » newest 2016-02-10 07:17:27

admin’s note: As Nimrod commented in an early thread, “the tankman photo was a snapshot …, the whole incident is a lot more powerful than the snapshot; in the same way that the whole 1989 movement makes a more powerful statement than the snapshot of 6/4.” Previously, we posted personal accounts of students from Tianjin or Shanghai to give readers a taste of the spread, both in terms of time and space, of the 1989 student movement. Today, we post an account from a student in Beijing on what he saw on that fateful day 20 years ago. Needless to say, the views on the movement among the participates have diverged and shifted considerably over the past 20 years. However, the raw emotions we felt on that day, shock, anger, confusion, and above all, profound sadness, are afresh in our minds on this anniversary.

My Daughter, who is in the first grade, was reading her homework to me, “On My way to school, I saw beautiful flowers. Some flowers were hanging on stems …”

“That’s very good” I said.

“Others felt on the grass after a thunderstorm, but they are still beautiful” She continued.

“Yes, they are.”

Every life is a flower. Twenty years ago, in the morning of June 4th, I saw flowers fell.
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Jun 03

Tiananmen, 1989 – a need for dialogue 20 years later

Written by: Raj | Filed under:Analysis, media, politics | Tags:, , ,
392 Comments » newest 2013-07-01 09:54:48

tiananmen square 1989 tank man

The Chinese government still attempts to restrict public discussion in China about the events surrounding the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989. Its real reasons for doing so can only be guessed at – its official stance on the matter is vague and unsubstantiated. However, the fact that it does at all is highly important.

The “Tiananmen Mothers”, a brave group of campaigners, have long called for an open discussion of and investigation into the circumstances concerning the death of those who were killed 20 years ago. They have done this despite the harrassment many of their members have received from the Chinese authorities. Last week they issued a fresh public statement, calling for an investigation. Continue reading »