May 21

Internet Mob Rides Again – Liaoning Bitch-Girl

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:News | Tags:,
19 Comments » newest 2009-05-27 19:46:57

Zhang Ya (张雅) (UPDATE: New name, see more below) has become the latest target of the Internet lynch mob. She is a 21 year old girl from Liaoning, and probably receiving far more hostility than even Grace Wang.

Here is her crime:

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May 19

“Go China!”

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:Analysis, News | Tags:, ,
14 Comments » newest 2008-05-25 14:52:21

China is defiantly in mourning today. To those who lost their lives last week: you are in our memories, rest in peace.

Faced with a disaster of biblical proportion, the vast majority of Chinese stood still at 2:28 PM (local time) on Monday to memorialize those who lost their lives in last week’s earthquake. The Chinese government and Chinese businesses are taking extraordinary steps to participate in this memorial, including basically shutting down all entertainment in the country for three days; Shanghaiist gives a detailed overview of some of these measures.

The year 2008 might go down in history as the year that has again united China. I’ve had several Chinese of my parents’ generation tell me that many of them had lost faith in the Chinese as a people after the Cultural Revolution, that a decade of mutual persecution and incrimination had destroyed even basic morality. I’ve had other Chinese tell me that they had lost faith in the Chinese as a nation after 1989/6/4, that a country which used force on its people could not possibly survive. I’ve heard from younger Chinese that they felt abandoned by the new market economy, that the growing wealth gap meant we were growing more separated by the day.

But many feel a sense of renewal this year. We’ve seen the wealthy reach deep into their pockets to donate to the victims; we’ve seen young peasant soldiers give their lives, give every inch of their souls in fighting for every last life in Sichuan; we’ve seen (some) admirable government officials go sleepless nights trying to solve every last problem. All of the pain that we’ve shared (from the snow storm, to Tibet, and now to the Sichuan earthquake), and all of the good that we’ve done to fight back are re-establishing in many Chinese a broad love for China that hadn’t existed for decades.

This is no longer the red hot, testosterone-driven lust for a stronger China many of us (including myself) exhibited after the Olympic torch was attacked on foreign soil. This is a deeper, determined, unblemished love for a China that we will rebuild.

I was very moved by this video of the crowds that spontaneously formed in Tiananmen Square (and many other Chinese cities) following a 3-minute period of silence; the video shows tears, anger, sorrow, and hope in the hearts of a billion plus Chinese of all ages and backgrounds.

May 17

Chinese Internet Mob – Morality Police

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:General | Tags:,
8 Comments » newest 2008-05-30 20:59:35

Students from Sichuan high school were evacuated from their classrooms on May 12th due to the earthquake. A few decide to record themselves having some fun. They mock the idea of casualties (one girl says she’s not worried about her parents, only the singers of Twins); they say they hope there’s an earthquake every day.

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May 16

“I love you from under the rubble; I just want to hug you again…”

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:culture | Tags:,
2 Comments » newest 2008-05-17 15:05:50

This poem comes from an editor at Taiwan’s China Post.

Child - Reaching for his backpack

My dearest Daddy and Mommy:

I’m sorry! Today, I won’t be home on time.

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May 15

Sichuan: A volunteer’s diary

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:Letters | Tags:, ,
11 Comments » newest 2008-06-11 18:41:56

This post also comes from Tianya, and is dated the evening of May 15th.

I haven’t closed my eyes for two days. I’m a student from Wuxi’s Professional Health Institute (Wuxi is located in Jiangsu province, in eastern China). After we learned of the earthquake in Sichuan, 8 of us voluntarily organized ourselves into a group, and had one of our parents drive us to Sichuan. The expressway’s still blocked, but along the way we saw a couple military trucks, and we caught a ride. We arrived at the earthquake zone, and we’ve been helping rescue the wounded since.

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May 15

Fortunate survivors spent their time trapped singing songs

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:News | Tags:,
2 Comments » newest 2008-05-15 03:32:27


The thing that 16 year old Li An’ning fears the most is shaking. Lying on her stretcher, the rescuers carrying her to safety are careful with every step, afraid any small tremble will bring screams from her.

“I’m not even afraid of death now, but I’m terrified of even the smallest shake”, she said.

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May 14

Donations for Sichuan Earthquake Relief

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:Environment, News | Tags:, ,
3 Comments » newest 2008-05-15 10:09:56

For those who care about China, your effort is needed now more than ever. Here are a few more options for those looking to make a donation to the Sichuan earthquake relief effort.

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May 13

Sichuan earthquake – continued

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:General, media | Tags:,
7 Comments » newest 2008-05-14 16:58:52

Within 2 hours of the actual earthquake, premier Wen Jiabao was on a plane to Chengdu. Upon landing, he was on the scene at the devastated city of Dujiangyan within hours. He has barely slept over the last 24-30 hours, personally attending to details on the scene. He has been in almost constant tears, doing what little he can to help.  He has been quoted as saying to government officials: “Only one sentence: the people feed you,  you know what you must do.”

The death toll continues to rise. The worst devastation appears to be in Beichuang, where basically the entire county-town has been leveled. The People’s Liberation Army and Armed Police have double-time marched into the area, but they could not bring heavy equipment. They can only provide basic comfort at this time; trapped school-children are calling out to them… “uncles, please help!” Villagers are being evacuated slowly, leaving behind probably half of the original population of Beichuang in the ruins.

Beijing has been remarkably open with covering this entire tragedy, not pulling a single punch. Images of children crushed and trapped within schools are on the front-pages of all Chinese newspapers and websites. Every resource within China is being brought in.  The Olympic torch relay has been drastically modified.  The route has been shrunk, and there will be a minute of silence in memory of those lost.  Donation boxes will be setup around the route; the relay will now be a chance to raise money for the victims.

An elite airborne paratrooper unit (15th Airborne Corps) was widely reported to have been planning to parachute into the heart of the devastation yesterday, with road access still cut off. With horrible weather, many expected a very high casualty rate amongst the paratroopers; many reportedly wrote their last wills in preparation. With weather growing even worse in this mountainous area, however, this desperate measure was postponed for now.

Nations and people around the world have offered their sympathies and assistance. The Dalai Lama has applauded Beijing’s remarkably quick response to the earthquake, and is praying for the souls of the dead. Earthquake rescue teams from every nation stands ready to deploy; in the face of overwhelming support for the government effort so far, this last item is probably the only point of contention in the Chinese world right now. Some in China accuse the Chinese government of wanting to save face, and thus refusing international teams on the ground. However, Taiwanese experts commented that during their earthquake effort a few years back, dealing with international experts (speaking different languages and unfamiliar with the setting) can actually serve as a major distraction in the early hours of such a crisis. Beijing has said it welcomes all aid, and international teams will be welcomed in as soon as the roads into the mountains are cleared.

And yet again during this 2008, the Olympic year, the world’s attention is squarely on China.

May 12

Major earthquake centered in Tibetan autonomous area

Written by: Buxi | Filed under:News | Tags:,
10 Comments » newest 2008-05-13 17:04:37

A devastating earthquake has struck western Sichuan province. Early press reports are available here, and here; video from CCTV is here (Internet Explorer required). The earthquake’s epicenter is in Wenchuang county, which is part of the larger Aba Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture.

The earthquake occurred at a very shallow depth, which accounts for the heavy damage, as well as people fleeing from swaying buildings in distant cities like Taipei, Shanghai, and Bangkok. To give some context for this scale: Chengdu’s distance from Shanghai is roughly similar to the distance of New York from Florida, Winnipeg from Quebec, Belfast from Rome.

Most of the damage and deaths appear to be located in Wenchuan county. Wenchung county is in the southern part of Aba (also known as Ngawa) prefecture. Wenchuan county has a population that is 46% Han, 34% Qiang, and 18% Tibetan. For Aba prefecture as a whole, 54% of the population is Tibetan, and 25% are Han. There were significant violent riots in Aba prefecture in March.

Premier Wen Jiabao is already on the ground in Sichuan province, and will direct the rescue operation personally. Road access has reportedly been cut off to the mountainous areas where the epicenter of the quake is; we won’t know full story for days.

UPDATE: Death count has crossed the 8000 boundary, and likely to climb higher. For those able to help, instructions for making donations to the Chinese Red Cross are listed below.

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