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Archive for the ‘asia’ Category

A Word From a Chinese Tout

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S.M. Hali is an “analyst and journalist” who appears frequently in electronic media and pens columns in various publications, mostly in Pakistan. I’ve been reading his “analysis” for several years now and when it comes to China, he’s less of an analyst and more of a cheerleader. China never had a bigger public relations promoter than Mr. Hali, who, it seems, is more Chinese than the Chinese.

Nevertheless, it was Mr. Hali’s column in the on the 19th Communist Party of China National Congress that makes him gush like a fan boy, going as far as to call China a ‘democracy!’

The Occident does not appreciate the intricacies of Chinese democracy as it perceives it from the prism of its own system like that followed by the US or the Westminster. China has adapted a style of governance and democratic rule, which is more suitable to its people and is flexible in accordance with changing times. 2,280 delegates including 24.2 per cent women and 11.5 per cent minority delegates, chosen from a group of nearly 89 million party members across the nation are attending the 19th CPC National Congress, making it all pervasive. The opinions of more than 4,700 people, including delegates to the party’s 18th National Congress and newly-elected delegates to its 19th National Congress, have been solicited on the draft report, which has been submitted to the current Congress. If that is not democracy then what else is?

It’s clearly obvious Mr. Hali doesn’t know what democracy is. He’s equating democratic centralism, practiced by Marxist-Leninist parties like the Communist Party of China, with democracy, which are two different things. Not that this distinction matters to Mr. Hali, who is an unalloyed supporter of China in all things. You’d be hard-pressed to find him write anything critical about China in all his years as an “analyst and journalist.”

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Written by niraj

October 23rd, 2017 at 10:29 am

Posted in asia

Jealous Of China?

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According to Jayati Ghosh, any criticism of China– on Tibet, its unqualified support of Sudan, selling arms to thugs like Mugabe– is imperialism incarnate, double-standards, racism, colonialism, and every word the left has monopolized to describe its enemies. Nice, no? Anyway, everything she says about China’s critics can also be applied to China. Just ask China’s neighbors. Or read a history book.

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Written by niraj

April 22nd, 2008 at 2:56 pm

Posted in asia

China And Olympics: A PR Stunt

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I don’t know how the rest of the world feels about the Olympics, but it has no charm for me whatsoever. The Olympic spirit, so to speak, has been suborned by crass commercialism and political expediency.

China is using the Olympics strictly as a public relations gimmick: to propagandize its achievements; a sort of gaudy coming out party. They want the world to know that China has arrived. So it pains them to see their efforts sullied by silly protests over Tibet. So, in response, China has attacked the Dalai Lama, who has been nothing but supportive of China. China has also attacked the West, the usual standby, for its neocolonial mindset: they can’t stand the idea of China succeeding. That old chestnut.

China is on the verge of being a superpower (something it always aspired to be), it has the world’s second biggest economy, yet it is offended by harmless protests. It’s only going to get worse. China would to like the world to see China strictly on its own terms. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way. When you put yourself on display like China is doing, the whole world will see everything, good and bad. It’s the price of being a superpower. Deal with it.

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Written by niraj

April 17th, 2008 at 9:28 am

China: Friend Of The Environment?

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No one kisses China’s ass more than The Pakistan Observer, whose editorials are nauseating for their sycophancy, if not outright worship of the Red Dragon. In its latest editorial, it heaps praise on China’s new found concern for the environment:

The world today is facing grave threats due to unplanned, reckless and irresponsible development that has produced serious ecological and environmental problems for the mankind. Most of these problems are the direct result of the blind pursuit of material development by the West, which is still not prepared to take bold and vital steps to save the globe from impending disaster. In this backdrop, China deserves credit for bringing leaders and experts together to discuss the crucial issue of how to improve environment of Asia. This is timely initiative in view of the fact that after Japan, South Korea and Malaysia, countries like China and India too are moving swiftly on the path of industrial growth raising concerns about environmental issues.

If China wants to improve the environment, it should look in its own backward. According to The Guardian, no friend of capitalism, China is the biggest emitter of carbon dioxide in the world, and it’s only going to get worse. Many of China’s major cities live in clouds of pollution so toxic residents have to wear masks. And in the run-up to the 2008 Olympics, China has banned thousands of automobiles from Beijing in order to improve its air quality.

It is quite obvious that the developing countries, which are at the receiving end, cannot spare adequate resources to undertake comprehensive programmes for promotion of environment and therefore, it is responsibility of the rich and developed nations to provide them financial assistance as well as transfer technology for the purpose.

Interesting. Is The Pakistan Observer saying that China– with over $1 trillion in foreign reserves and arguably the second largest economy in the world– is still considered a developing country, and that developed countries (code for the West) should give it resources to improve its environment so China can continue its economic growth at no cost? Ridiculous, simply ridiculous.

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Written by niraj

April 14th, 2008 at 10:25 am

The People’s Daily Supports China

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The Hindu finally lets its opinion be known about Tibet. It’s a rare single, six-paragraph editorial instead of the usual two, two-paragraph editorial that is their stock and trade. Not suprisingly, The Hindu takes a pro-China stance. The first paragraph says it all:

If you go by western media reports, the propaganda of the so-called ‘Tibetan government-in-exile’ in Dharamsala and the votaries of the ‘Free Tibet’ cause, or by the fulminations of Nancy Pelosi and the Hollywood glitterati, Tibet is in the throes of a mass democratic uprising against Han Chinese communist rule. Some of the more fanciful news stories, images, and opinion pieces on the ‘democratic’ potential of this uprising have been put out by leading western newspapers and television networks. The reality is that the riot that broke out in Lhasa on March 14 and claimed a confirmed toll of 22 lives involved violent, ransacking mobs, including 300 militant monks from the Drepung Monastery, who marched in tandem with a foiled ‘March to Tibet’ by groups of monks across the border in India. In Lhasa, the rioters committed murder, arson, and other acts of savagery against innocent civilians and caused huge damage to public and private property. The atrocities included dousing one man with petrol and setting him alight, beating a patrol policeman and carving out a fist-size piece of his flesh, and torching a school with 800 terrorised pupils cowering inside.

Why are reports from western media and the Dalai Lama considered propaganda while Chinese news reports, which are essentially official government press releases, more credible? And how does The Hindu account for the fact that China employed a press black-out, where no non-state media outlets were allowed in. So where did The Hindu get these images, news reports, eyewitness accounts? The Hindu does not say, but we can speculate that they got their ‘fanciful’ news stories directly from China.

Nitin gives the editorial the thorough dissection that it deserves.

ADDENDUM: It would not surprise me one bit that among protestors were agent provocateurs to engineer incidents like attacks on civilians and police. Authoritarian regimes often engage in such practices to give them a free hand in suppressing opposition, violently if need be.

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Written by niraj

March 26th, 2008 at 2:30 pm

Posted in asia,india,media

How Many Really Die In Tibet?

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From the AP:

China’s official news agency says the casualty toll from anti-Chinese riots in Tibet has risen to 19 dead and 623 injured.

Xinhua said Friday night that 18 civilians and one police officer were confirmed dead in the unrest a week ago in the Tibetan capital. The news agency said 241 police officers and 382 civilians were injured in Lhasa.

The actual death and injury toll is probably much higher. Xinhua is underreporting the numbers for political reasons.

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Written by niraj

March 21st, 2008 at 2:43 pm

Posted in asia,media

Tibet Is Just The Beginning

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People seem surprised by the protests in Tibet, which seems to be growing in scope everyday. I wasn’t. Tibet is just the tip of the iceberg. China is more restive than it’s being reported by the mainstream media, who tend to focus on China’s red-hot economy.

For one thing, the countryside is not as placid as China would have us believe. It’s a region of great ferment. Violent protests have broken out in all parts of rural China, which the government brutally represses. Only sanitized version of events appear in state-controlled media, which much of the world media parrots without comment or skepticism.

And it’s only going to get worse. The Communist Party, which rules China, has no mechanism to channel protests of any kind. It perceives any dissent, no matter how trivial, as a threat to its authority. There are no democratic institutions in China: no free press, no political parties, no freedoms– nothing! As long as the economy is strong, and jobs are plentiful, people are happy. But what will happen when the economy weakens? That is the dilemma that will plague China in the days to come.

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Written by niraj

March 20th, 2008 at 12:33 pm

Posted in asia