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The 74th Anniversary of Nanjing Massacre

December 13th, 2011 Leave a comment Go to comments

Today marks the 74th anniversary of the Nanjing Massacre, where Japanese soldiers went on a rampage of rape and murder, targeting women and children alike, killing more than 300,000 Chinese during the brief few weeks when they took over Nanjing, then capital city of the nationalist government. The issue that is perhaps the most contentious between Japan and China is Japanese history text books largely having this tragedy swept under the carpet; vastly toned down without admission of guilt or completely ignored altogether. The Japanese impasse with the rest of her Asian neighbors is similarly over prevailing Japanese unrepentant attitudes towards her colonial past. Germany’s attitude and actions towards their WW2 past offer a big contrast.

In the long run, I am confident Japan will reconcile with China and other Asian countries. The current climate in Japan and few decades of whitewashing history will certainly prolong the reconciliation.

To the Chinese government’s credit, she has largely put this difference aside in favor of normalization. I might add this is done so with some anger from many ordinary Chinese citizens given Japan’s attitude.

I think the Japanese strategy is to wait the issue out. They hope in the distant future, when the victims have long gone, the emotion would have subsided. The “cost” then in formally recognizing a more truthful history would be relatively “low.” Perhaps. Perhaps when the relationship between the two countries have become more normalized and friendly, differences will be easier to reconcile.

Until then, I think Japan’s international profile will remain limited. For example, Japan’s bid for a permanent seat in the Security Council will always be thwarted by her Asian neighbors.

Over the years in my travels to Japan, I have had chance to discuss this history with a number of friends there. One even cried as he recounted some of the stories his grandfather told him. The two atomic bombs and Japan’s defeat in WW2 were bitterness the Japanese also had to endure. Rape by American soldiers were a common occurrence during the early years of occupation.

This particular friend knew full well of the Nanjing Massacre too. After I told him my grandparents home was destroyed by Japanese bombers, he apologized profusely as he cried.

One of them lost her best friend from high school (who is Chinese) after they started discussing this past.

A large percentage of the Japanese population view their invasion of Asia was to keep the region for herself and to ‘protect’ it from Western colonialists. This was their propaganda during the invasion and still lingers today.

One thing we all unanimously agreed: war and invasions are bad. We all should be striving to prevent such adventures. Remember, Nanjing Massacre was just but one episode. Cities throughout China were terrorized by Japanese bombers, including my grandparents in Fujian Province in the south. Chinese deaths totaled 10-20 million where the majority were civilian. Japanese accounted for 3 million in WW2.

The Nanjing Massacre was a horrific past and there are still survivors alive today. As humans, we all could use some reminder what brutality we are capable of. Towards that end, I am looking forward to watching a new film by acclaimed director, Zhang Yimou, starring Christian Bale, called, “The Flowers of War” (“金陵十三钗”), where an ordinary American driven by conscience saves a group of Chinese girls from Japanese soldiers during the massacre.


(Youku version)
I often remind my friends in China – forgive does not mean forget. We have to find a way to stop the cycle of violence. We have to think very long term.  The young Japanese of today naturally want to remember their ancestors honorably.

This truth will eventually emerge more strongly in Japan, given time, as China grows stronger economically and the relationship between the two countries normalize.

  1. December 13th, 2011 at 00:26 | #1

    Perhaps I am being overly sensitive, but this BBC report with the narrative that Christian Bale is somehow “defending” the film as “Chinese propaganda” says more about the BBC than anything else.

    BBC – we don’t need you to second-guess the Nanjing Massacre. The death figure (“tens of thousands”) you used is wrong.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-china-16153164

    Imagine those idiots insinuating Schindler’s list as Jew or American ‘propaganda.’ Wait until they see a big budget movie made of the Opium War starring another big Hollywood star.

  2. December 13th, 2011 at 05:37 | #2

    I blogged as follows. Every time I read it or watched some mini series about this period, I am very sad.

    http://tonyp4idea.blogspot.com/2009/11/rape-of-nanjing_15.html

  3. raventhorn
    December 13th, 2011 at 05:43 | #3

    @YinYang

    If this movie was propaganda, I don’t know what they would call all the Hollywood movies about the DL, or what Richard Gere’s “Red Corner” was all about.

    Let’s just clear the record, Christian Bale’s movie about Nanjing has no portions to glorify any political system. By definition, that movie cannot be “propaganda”.

  4. December 13th, 2011 at 07:27 | #4

    @YinYang
    I believe the foreigner that saved the most Chinese is a German diplomat named http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Rabe. There’s a film made about him in China, the scene that a nazi flag is used to protect civilians from Japanese bombing is very moving. I think the only country that has a positive memory about the Nazi flag is China. Such is the irony of history.

    However, such a film would never be made in the west under the current political climate so an American has to be used instead.

  5. December 13th, 2011 at 08:31 | #5

    @TonyP4
    I feel the same way. Thanks for your link. It is important to remember this tragedy, because the victims have not had justice. This is the very bit that can be accorded them.

    @raventhorn
    The BBC is shit.

    @Ray
    Yes, I first read about Rabe in Iris Chang’s book. That’s an interesting point. It just goes to show that politics trump humanity doesn’t it?

  6. colin
    December 13th, 2011 at 10:32 | #6

    @YinYang

    Thanks for bring to my attention Rabe and from there, Minnie Vautrin. I begin thinking how the Japanese denial of the crimes is a road-block to the development of a more prosperous Asia as a whole. My good friend (non-east asian) friend was at the World Cup in Seoul/Japan, and was at a game between those two very countries. The game was in one of the countries, and his fellow spectators were boo-ing the other country. He asked why they were boo-ing, as regardless of who won, it was a win-win for everyone in both countries to have the games there and that both teams went deep into the rounds. He managed sway them. Imagine how much Asia as a whole could develop better if there was some conclusion to things like the Rape of Nanjing and other WWII atrocities the Japanese.

  7. tc
    December 13th, 2011 at 10:39 | #7

    BBC is shit is not news.

  8. December 13th, 2011 at 10:49 | #8

    @Ray #4

    Irony or not. Humane acts should be recognized as humane acts. When they aren’t because of politics, that is propoganda. This is why I don’t like people bringing up “Nazi” as an end-all-be-all of all evil. That shows more our ignorance than anything else…

  9. Charles Liu
    December 13th, 2011 at 13:41 | #9

    I remember doing research on this subject during the 60th anniversary on newsgroup soc.culture.china (predating blog and twitter), that the buddhist associations that collected bodies had records that survived the war.

    These incomplete records contributed to the estimated casualty figure of 210,000 – 250,000 during the war crime trial. The same time average civilian casualty inflicted by the Japanese army on China was about 300,000 a month.

    Perhaps we should dig up the evidence and send them to the BBC:

    http://www.cnd.org/njmassacre/

  10. Antioxidants
    December 13th, 2011 at 18:30 | #10

    There is also the Unit 731 in Northeast that use Chinese for vivisection and chemical and biological warfare research.

  11. Antioxidants
    December 13th, 2011 at 18:52 | #11

    There is an article just came out from an old China hand, Gregory Clark on China and Japan:

    http://www.gregoryclark.net/jt/page88/page88.html

  12. December 14th, 2011 at 02:54 | #12

    Ray :
    @YinYang
    I believe the foreigner that saved the most Chinese is a German diplomat named http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Rabe. There’s a film made about him in China, the scene that a nazi flag is used to protect civilians from Japanese bombing is very moving. I think the only country that has a positive memory about the Nazi flag is China. Such is the irony of history.
    However, such a film would never be made in the west under the current political climate so an American has to be used instead.

    Yeah, the West could never accept a film about a Nazi with a conscience. How implausible! Eyeroll.

    That said, this is something I actually agree with you guys on. The BBC might be technically right about that number; it really depends how you define “Nanjing Massacre”. It’s actually a misnomer, as the Japanese army was raping, looting, and killing their whole way to the city, what happened in Nanjing was just the exclamation point at the end of a long campaign of inhuman violence.

    Also, as someone mentioned it, Iris Chang’s book has the emotions right, but her research is pretty flawed. The best book I’ve read on Nanjing is actually this: http://www.amazon.com/Nanjing-Massacre-Journalist-Confronts-Institute/dp/0765603357/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1323859902&sr=8-1 The guy got great access to official documents and such, so he’s able to concretely disprove a lot of the statements Japanese officials made at the time and after that (such as, they gave no orders to kill anyone, etc). Highly recommended.

  13. raventhorn
    December 14th, 2011 at 05:52 | #13

    “Yeah, the West could never accept a film about a Nazi with a conscience. How implausible!”

    Quite implausible. So why are you making such a generalized statement? :)

  14. LOLZ
    December 14th, 2011 at 06:06 | #14

    The Western movie makers portray Nazis similar to how Hong Kong film makers treat the Japanese in “historical” Kung Fu movies (Wong Fei Hong, Ip Man, etc). There is always this one good Nazis/Japanese in each movie, but other than that one guy they are all bad. :)

  15. December 14th, 2011 at 08:39 | #15

    @C. Custer
    You also missed an important distinction. In the movie Rebe’s Diary, the whole German contingent was represented officially by the Nazi govn’t. In Schindler’s List, Schindler was represented as an individual while potraying Nazi Germany as a whole with no redeeming qualities.

    Sometimes, I wonder how you could believed that the GLF that lasted less than three years caused tens of million of death but the eight year Sino-Japanese leaved “just” 20 million deaths. And in the massacre of Nanjing only ten of thousands of death. Over a hundred thousands Nationalist troops was captured in the battle for Nanjing. Most of them simply disappeared.

    When people are trying to argue whether tens or hundreds of thousand are killed, they are skirting the real issue, which is what the Japanese revisionists are doing. You are not one of them are you.

  16. December 14th, 2011 at 08:53 | #16

    @colin
    I agree with what you say. Unless, the whole of East Asia or Asia is willing to accept the cause of the war in the Pacific, there will be no mutual understanding.

    The reality is, the whole of Asia with the exception of Japan and Thailand are colonized. Colonized is actually a word filled with racism and cultural superiority because in WWII Denmark, Netherlands, France were invaded by Germany but not colonized.

    If we hold humanity to the same standard pretty much the whole of Asia was invaded and occupied. In a way I agree with the Japanese right wingers view that Japanese was simply following the European foot steps toward modernization and industrialization. They were simply doing what the Portuguese, Spaniards, Dutch, British and French were doing.

    The Japanese view was that if the European are allowed to have their colonies why can’t Japan have one in Korea and China? Nazi Germany has the same opinion, why can’t they have some colonies in Eastern Europe too?

    Basically, when one is blaming just Imperial Japan and Nazi Germany, one is skirting the real issue. Only if China and Korea can take the lead to break out of the mould of being victims of just the Japanese would there be common ground for East Asians. There are no good guys in WWI and WWII, only aggressors and victims. The only difference is that some aggressors are worse than the other. One aggressor would kill, invade and rob while another committed mass murder, rape and of course the ultimate goal is simply to rob.

  17. Charles Liu
    December 14th, 2011 at 12:26 | #17

    @Ray

    Ray, Custer’s claim BBC is technically correct is false. The war crime trial verdict on Nanjing massacre death figure was 210,000 to 250,000:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nanking_Massacre#Death_toll_estimates

    BTW, I’m still boycotting CG.

  18. colin
    December 14th, 2011 at 13:45 | #18

    @Ray

    I’m not sure I’m following you. My point is that the Japanese denial of the crimes is a major obstacle for a more robust pan-Asia movement. Basically, yeah, Japan needs to come clean and admit it’s crimes. Not sure that you can realistically or fairly expect Korea, China,etc to “rise above” and pre-forgive the Japanese who happen to still be in a denial phase.

    Yep, it’s all pretty much on Japan.

  19. December 14th, 2011 at 14:15 | #19

    @Charles Liu
    Thanks for the head’s up.

  20. December 14th, 2011 at 14:19 | #20

    @colin
    That’s my point. In a sense, the Second World War is not just about China and Japan, it is a world war between all the major imperialist powers. Unless, we deal with it using a worldwide perspective the Japanese right wingers will always be indignant. (I am not saying they are right)

    However, in negotiation we must have a win-win situation. China and Korea will not forget the inccident but moving forward requires giving the Japanese a so-called “steps down the stage”.

  21. Charles Liu
    December 14th, 2011 at 15:21 | #21

    Here’s a fairly lengthy article on the different historical accounts of Nanjing massacre:

    http://www.historycooperative.org/journals/ahr/104.3/ah000842.html

    I would like to point out the Tokyo war crimes tribunal figure stated in paragraph 5 was undisputed by Japanese scholars until the nationalist revival in 70’s and 80’s. What’s also worth noting is the rejection of of ultra nationalism by many in the Japanese academia (starting paragraph 9.)

  22. December 14th, 2011 at 18:16 | #22

    It’s always interesting watching some western “liberals” crawl out from underneath rocks to criticize Chinese accounts of the Nanjing Massacre while they stay silent or mindlessly endorse the erroneous allegations by the TGIE against China. The fact is that there is considerable evidence that very large numbers of Chinese people died and were treated with some of the worst brutality of the 20th century by the imperial Japanese closely supporting the main Chinese claims. This is verified by Chinese, Japanese, and American and European historians. While the most commonly spread TGIE claims of atrocities have never seen a shred of evidence by any credible source.

  23. Antioxidants
    December 14th, 2011 at 18:58 | #23

    The Nanjing number game, by Gregory Clark, is a good read.

    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/text/eo20000207a3.html

  24. December 14th, 2011 at 21:03 | #24

    raventhorn :
    “Yeah, the West could never accept a film about a Nazi with a conscience. How implausible!”
    Quite implausible. So why are you making such a generalized statement?

    Because, Schindler’s List, the movie I linked to, is about a Nazi party member who is portrayed in a sympathetic light. It is one of the most popular and critically acclaimed American films of all time.

  25. December 14th, 2011 at 21:08 | #25

    Ray :
    Sometimes, I wonder how you could believed that the GLF that lasted less than three years caused tens of million of death but the eight year Sino-Japanese leaved “just” 20 million deaths. And in the massacre of Nanjing only ten of thousands of death.

    And sometimes I wonder if you guys are ever going to learn to read. Where did I ever say any of that? Nowhere.

    With regard to casualties at Nanjing, my point was that it depends on how you define “Nanjing”. The number might be tens of thousands if you’re talking about people killed actually in the city. It’s been a while since I studied this, but as I recall, most of the prisoner executions and mass executions generally took place outside the city. (That way, the Japanese didn’t have to transport the bodies anywhere; outside the city there was space for mass graves).

    When people are trying to argue whether tens or hundreds of thousand are killed, they are skirting the real issue, which is what the Japanese revisionists are doing. You are not one of them are you.

    No, and in fact, “When people are trying to argue whether tens or hundreds of thousand are killed, they are skirting the real issue” is exactly what I said in my original comment.

    Now I remember why I stopped commenting here. You guys are so horrible at reading and so dedicated to the idea that I’m some anti-China monster that you’re arguing against me even though my point is exactly the same as yours.

  26. December 14th, 2011 at 21:13 | #26

    Charles Liu :
    BTW, I’m still boycotting CG.

    And I promise you, we’re all really heartbroken about it.

    (As for the rest of your comment, please attempt to engage your brain and read my comment again. What I said was, the BBC might be technically correct, depending on how you define Nanjing. I’m sure you’d agree that most of the killing didn’t take place in downtown Nanjing. Much of it actually occurred outside the city proper. It’s a technicality, of course, which is why I said technically.)

    General note on reading: all the words are important.

  27. December 14th, 2011 at 21:46 | #27

    Custer’s logic is really idiotic. I suppose someone could say that no U.S. navy ships were sunk during the bombing of Pearl Harbor by ‘technically’ defining the harbor to exclude the waters!

    What a real piece of shit ‘technicality’ in defending the BBC’s number.

    Allow me to re-quote melektaus from above:

    It’s always interesting watching some western “liberals” crawl out from underneath rocks to criticize Chinese accounts of the Nanjing Massacre while they stay silent or mindlessly endorse the erroneous allegations by the TGIE against China. The fact is that there is considerable evidence that very large numbers of Chinese people died and were treated with some of the worst brutality of the 20th century by the imperial Japanese closely supporting the main Chinese claims. This is verified by Chinese, Japanese, and American and European historians. While the most commonly spread TGIE claims of atrocities have never seen a shred of evidence by any credible source.

  28. LOLZ
    December 14th, 2011 at 21:56 | #28

    I don’t know why would my post be moderated, but if BBC criticizes one of the many movies made about the holocaust as “j3W propaganda”, I am sure that journalist would be fired if not sent to prison for holocaust denial. It is perplexing to me why would so many Europeans think Nanjing Massacre is overblown or a hoax.

    While we are on this topic, can someone from UK tell me how does the local education system deal with the Opium wars? Do British people even know about this part of their history? Because I often see people portray anything which China says about Opium war and Boxer rebellion as propaganda as well.

  29. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 05:18 | #29

    C. Custer :

    raventhorn :“Yeah, the West could never accept a film about a Nazi with a conscience. How implausible!”Quite implausible. So why are you making such a generalized statement?

    Because, Schindler’s List, the movie I linked to, is about a Nazi party member who is portrayed in a sympathetic light. It is one of the most popular and critically acclaimed American films of all time.

    I don’t recall anyone raising the “West could never accept a film about a Nazi with a conscience” here. Why are you talking to yourself (again)?

    Bored to death over at CG already, and have to scurry back here into HH? Seriously, a bit shameless reintroduction of yourself, isn’t it? :)

  30. pug_ster
    December 15th, 2011 at 05:21 | #30

    @C. Custer

    Seriously, C Custer, you should watch out what you are saying here. C Custer is making bigoted statements that Chinese people don’t know how to read. This is why Chinageeks is a hate site. If anyone of us CCP ‘sympathizers’ makes comments there, other people makes personal insults against you and you will be banned. In here, moderators do their jobs and remove these kind of comments of personal insults.

  31. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 05:27 | #31

    “With regard to casualties at Nanjing, my point was that it depends on how you define “Nanjing”. The number might be tens of thousands if you’re talking about people killed actually in the city. It’s been a while since I studied this, but as I recall, most of the prisoner executions and mass executions generally took place outside the city.”

    That’s so classic Chuckie! LOL! (Now, why would anyone bother to define “Nanjing”, to the effect that the “mass executions” just barely outside city walls would NOT count??!! Is someone trying to make the numbers look good??)

    What would you call those “mass executions” then? “Massacre at nowhere”??

    And by analogy, because Gitmo is outside of US, US citizens can be sent there with no protection of US laws, perhaps?

    I can see the Fox News Mindmelt is working well for Chuckie.

  32. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 05:38 | #32

    @C. Custer

    “Now I remember why I stopped commenting here. You guys are so horrible at reading and so dedicated to the idea that I’m some anti-China monster that you’re arguing against me even though my point is exactly the same as yours.”

    Speaking of horrible at reading, let’s just get this 1 straight for once, who wrote this below:

    “the West could never accept a film about a Nazi with a conscience.”

    I would say Chuckie doesn’t know how to read, makes his own ridiculous generalized statements, so his “point” is NOT “exactly the same” as others here.

    (For one, I don’t think it is even possible that 2 people’s “points” are “exactly the same”. So YET another Chuckie ridiculously generalized statement!)

    Chuckie’s statement of “exactly the same point” clearly show his desperation tactics, (another classic Right Wing nut tactics of “Don’t argue with me, My point is the SAME as yours, but better”).

    Oh Chuckie, Your fellows over at CG may be that foolish to fall for that one, but you would be foolish to think others are “exactly the same” as those on your forum.

    And you better see a doctor about your memory lapses. :)

  33. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 06:02 | #33

    @C. Custer

    “Now I remember why I stopped commenting here. You guys are so horrible at reading and so dedicated to the idea that I’m some anti-China monster that you’re arguing against me even though my point is exactly the same as yours.”

    Really, here is your “Point” in the SAME comment, Who else here made “exactly the same point” you did below???!!

    “With regard to casualties at Nanjing, my point was that it depends on how you define “Nanjing”. The number might be tens of thousands if you’re talking about people killed actually in the city. It’s been a while since I studied this, but as I recall, most of the prisoner executions and mass executions generally took place outside the city. (That way, the Japanese didn’t have to transport the bodies anywhere; outside the city there was space for mass graves).”

    Chuckie obviously does NOT read his own “point”, when he writes them! How do you say you made EXACTLY the same point, when you just thrown out another new one of your own in the same comment, just couple of paragraphs earlier??!! :)

  34. December 15th, 2011 at 07:11 | #34

    Moderated for irrelevant personal attacks and SPAM by C. Custer. – RV.

  35. December 15th, 2011 at 09:22 | #35

    I actually found this to be a fair and reasonable post, but can’t say the same for the comments. One thing certainly jumped out at me:

    This is why I don’t like people bringing up “Nazi” as an end-all-be-all of all evil. That shows more our ignorance than anything else

    You really don’t see the Nazis as an end-all-be-all evil? Ask nearly any German today what they think of the Nazis. (And I lived there for two years.) THEY know Hitler was evil incarnate. Ask any of its victims. Maybe the Nazis built roads and helped raise the economy (mainly on deficit spending) but they were the most catastrophic, evil regime of all time. And they reduced their own country to rubble. Of course, there were many heroes, and we mustn’t implicate all the German people, many of whom despised Hitler. In fact, I don’t blame the masses for falling under Hitler’s spell, considering what Germany was like after the Great Depression, when this charismatic man offered them hope. But Nazism per se, by its very nature, is evil because it is based on race and hatred, with the single-minded goal of extermination and aggression. The heroes were those that operated outside of and against the regime. And do you know what happened to John Rabe, do you know what the Nazis did to him? He went back to Germany and was accused of aiding and abetting the enemy (the Chinese), was fired from Siemens and died in poverty. His act of decency was looked at by the Nazis as criminal. The Nazis had no redeeming qualities, nothing to recommend them to future generations, and left behind a trail of death of innocent civilians, women and children the likes of which the world has never seen. They institutionalized mass murder and genocide of totally innocent millions. If the Nazis weren’t evil who is?

    For the record, Custer’s comments were logical and polite, and watching him get hounded for no particular reason is not very classy.

  36. December 15th, 2011 at 09:43 | #36

    @richard
    You are being naive if you think somehow the Nazi is seprated from the German society. The holocaust would never had happened in a country like China. GLF, yes, CR, yes but not the gasing of a whole group of people in chambers.

    The whole German populance and occupied Europe should bear the responsibility for the tragedy. Only those who resisted the Nazi in any way is blameless. Fort example as far as I know not one Jew from Danmark or Albania were sent to the concentration camp.

    Hitler and the Nazi party is the catalyst not THE CAUSE. Your analysis is pathetic at best.

    “They institutionalized mass murder and genocide of totally innocent millions. If the Nazis weren’t evil who is?”

    Your statement can also refer to the US government treatment of the native population by putting them in concentration camp (probably an American invention). How many First Nation language has disappeared since the end of the second world war? You don’t need to look to far for genocide.

  37. December 15th, 2011 at 09:59 | #37

    @richard #35,

    Your response to comment #4 shows perfectly what I mean.

    I never said Nazis are not “evil,” as you seem to suggest. What I said was they are now be made the “end-all-be-all of all evil.” Sometimes we see the world as so black and white that a person’s humane acts are not recognized simply because they were a Nazi. People lazily call out the name Nazi as a means to stop discussions – to paint the world as black and white when it is not.

    You did get one thing right, a large part of the evil that arose in Germany was due to pre-war conditions – conditions that I’d like to remind people are imposed by the victors of WWI. That had a lot to do the creation of anti-semitism and other madness that arose concurrently with the rise of Hitler.

    Many Germans today like to paint themselves as victims of Hitler – of a brutal dictatorship. While I admire Germans for atoning their sins (unlike the Japanese), to me that is still a cop-out. The Germans created Hitler as much as Hitler created Nazi Germany. I don’t subscribe to painting the world in good vs. evil and then escaping the past with that categorization.

    Good and evil are parts of the same coin. Recognizing that duality of human capacity, of history, of any culture, any society – that’s the true lesson that can be learned. Simply saying someone is evil – a weird chance of history – that we are his victims – that’s no lesson at all…

  38. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 10:04 | #38

    @richard

    “For the record, Custer’s comments were logical and polite, and watching him get hounded for no particular reason is not very classy.”

    Oh yes, you “watching him get hounded” for no particular reason is definitely not very classy of you. Your logic is about as clear as your sentence. :)

    Why do you “watch” people for no particular reason, Richard??!!

  39. December 15th, 2011 at 10:11 | #39

    I appreciate the polite and solicitous response.

    I never said the German people were not responsible for the Holocaust. Some were, many were not. (And I am a Jew and a long-time student of this topic. That doesn’t mean I’m right, but I do have some knowledge of what I’m saying.) I can only look with wonder at your putting words in my mouth that simply were not said. Here, again, is my one reference to the German people: “In fact, I don’t blame the masses for falling under Hitler’s spell, considering what Germany was like after the Great Depression, when this charismatic man offered them hope.” In other words, I understand Nazism, just as I understand the dynamics of the Nanjing Massacre. And to understand is not to excuse; just the opposite.

    I happen to agree that all Germany was guilty of aiding and abetting the Nazis, many serving as “Hitler’s willing executioners,” and the nation had to — and did — share collective guilt. Then, of course, there are those who went against the Party, like Schindler and Rabe and von Stauffenberg. So where exactly do you and I disagree? Why would you ever utter the words, “Your analysis is pathetic.”

    Your shift then to the US and the Native Americans is irrelevant to this conversation. We aren’t talking about whether America was bad, were we? This is a typical barrier thrown in to change the direction of the conversation, but that’s alright. The extermination of the native population was an unpardonable sin. It did not compare with the planned, institutionalized genocide and torture of men, women and children, and it occurred, sadly, at a time when many countries were colonial and decimated native populations in lands conquered. That is not an excuse at all, but it’s important to retain historical perspective. It’s easy to understand why Hitler did what he did: more land and empire. It is less easy to understand the distinctly sadistic nature of his reign of terror against the Slavs, Jews and gypsies, an intentional program of torture, degradation and death that lies in a different sphere from that of most other mass murderers. (Pol Pot comes close in terms of sadism.)

    But back to the original comment: The evil of the Nazis should never be denied or minimized. No matter how bad you may perceive the US to be, the evil legacy of the Nazis remains, and in and of itself is the very apotheosis of evil. If commenters here wish to say otherwise it’s their privilege.

  40. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 10:43 | #40

    @richard

    “Your shift then to the US and the Native Americans is irrelevant to this conversation. We aren’t talking about whether America was bad, were we?”

    Evil is relative. “End all be all of Evil” is most definitely relative term.

    If you don’t want to do comparison, then we don’t know what you are trying to argue.

    “(Pol Pot comes close in terms of sadism.)”

    For example, see your own comparison in your own comment.

  41. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 10:47 | #41

    @richard

    “The extermination of the native population was an unpardonable sin. It did not compare with the planned, institutionalized genocide and torture of men, women and children, and it occurred, sadly, at a time when many countries were colonial and decimated native populations in lands conquered.”

    Colonialism IS an institutionalize system of policies. I don’t see why you say “it did not compare”, when it is Institutionalized!!

    Seriously, are you forgetting PRESIDENT Jackson responsible for Trail of Tears, set in policies that deprive the Cherokee Nation of property and land, against a US Supreme Court ruling, forcing them to march to starvation and poverty??!!

    Is that not “institutionalized”? If not, what would be?

    How about the current French policies to force the Gypsies to leave??!

  42. December 15th, 2011 at 11:14 | #42


    Why do you “watch” people for no particular reason, Richard??!!

    Oy. Darling, I’m reading the thread — whenever you are reading a thread you are watching what goes on in it. That may be the oddest remark I’ve seen here ever. Should I counter with, “Why are you reading my comments for no particular reason?!!”

    The killing of the Native Americans cannot be justified. But it can be distinguished from the assembly-line process of humiliation, degradation, torture and murder of innocents who the Nazi government was not at war with. Both awful. Both unique. But there was no mass movement in America that was actually founded on the popular notion that the Indians, even old people and tiny children and babies, posed an existential threat that needed to be eradicated. The Nazis are unique in their methods and their ideology, especially in that they were a highly educated, urbane and successful society that had contributed more to the arts and sciences than nearly any other nation. That they surrendered their critical faculties to follow a madman into their own destruction and the destruction of millions more will always be a source of mystery and amazement. The Nazis remain and always will remain the be-all-and-end-all of evil. They were nothing but evil, to the very core of their race-based philosophy.

  43. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 12:41 | #43

    @richard

    I only asked, because you wrote, “For the record, Custer’s comments were logical and polite, and watching him get hounded for no particular reason is not very classy.”

    You brought it up. I guess you just wrote something that didn’t make any sense.

    “The killing of the Native Americans cannot be justified. But it can be distinguished from the assembly-line process of humiliation, degradation, torture and murder of innocents who the Nazi government was not at war with.”

    Are you saying that killing of the Native Americans was because of “WAR”? and there was a distinction because Americans didn’t do it with an “assembly-line process”??

    “That they surrendered their critical faculties to follow a madman into their own destruction and the destruction of millions more will always be a source of mystery and amazement. The Nazis remain and always will remain the be-all-and-end-all of evil. They were nothing but evil, to the very core of their race-based philosophy.”

    Interesting, and Americans did NOT “surrender their critical faculties” in killing of Native Americans??

    I just like to have you explain clearly the differences of “be-all and end all of evil” and some other unjustifiable evil, just so that we are clear.

    Colonialism is NOT some “race-based philosophy”??

  44. December 15th, 2011 at 14:32 | #44

    There’s really no arguing with you, I’m afraid.

  45. raventhorn
    December 15th, 2011 at 14:52 | #45

    richard :
    There’s really no arguing with you, I’m afraid.

    Weird, I thought I was just asking questions to clarify YOUR comments. If you don’t want to explain, you don’t have to.

  46. aeiou
    December 15th, 2011 at 18:34 | #46

    Never forget that it was the British who pioneered concentration camps and American anthropologists who gave creed to Hitler’s ideas. And you have to wonder why did Germans fell so neglected, so mistreated after WW1 and the role of Britain in precipitating the rise of Nazism, and ultimately WW2. Would there have been a holocaust if Britain wasn’t so hell bend on containing Germany and protecting their empire?

    But reiterating #28’s comment, imagine the shitstorm if the BBC tried to politicise the holocaust like they to this movie. Everything pertaining to China is fair game, everything. Nothing is sacred, such is the way of western liberalism.

  47. Naqshbandiyya
    December 15th, 2011 at 19:34 | #47

    @C. Custer
    Technically, no protesters died on Tiananmen Square on June 4, 1989: people just died on the streets outside of the square. I’m sure you’ve heard this argument before, and you may say that that’s an idiotic technicality. But your (and the BBC’s) denial of the Nanjing Massacre is worse; more analogous to Holocaust denial, because the residents of Nanjing did nothing to invite their own slaughter.

  48. Wahaha
    December 15th, 2011 at 20:41 | #48

    With regard to casualties at Nanjing, my point was that it depends on how you define “Nanjing”. The number might be tens of thousands if you’re talking about people killed actually in the city. It’s been a while since I studied this,………..

    **********************************

    Custer,

    Are you saying west media has been lying for 20 years on 6.4?

  49. Jim
    December 15th, 2011 at 20:47 | #49

    This should make for more interesting promotion of The Flowers of War: Christian Bale roughed up by Chinese security guards. Now will China’s cyber cops have to block all searches for Bale’s name?

  50. Wahaha
    December 15th, 2011 at 21:03 | #50
  51. zack
    December 15th, 2011 at 21:39 | #51

    yo maybe next time jet li or jackie chan are promoting a movie in the States, they ought to go and visit bradley manning eh, and when the security guards push them back, everyone else can go around saying “oh, those hollywood movies are linked to US human rights abuses and atrocities”

    riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight

  52. Jim
    December 15th, 2011 at 21:57 | #52

    @zack

    Bradley Manning was tried and convicted under the UCMJ; he’s incarcerated — officially, not some off-the-books house arrest. There are no thugs-for-hire surrounding his neighborhood. If you, Jet Li, or Jackie Chan want to protest Manning’s case and decry what you think is U.S. hypocrisy, you’re free to do that. You’re free to go to where he used to live, try to talk to his family, report on how they’re going about their lives, etc. You won’t be shoved and punched by thugs who cut off his entire family from the rest of the world. Indeed, last time I was at Quantico, outside one of the gates was a protest in support of freeing Bradley Manning…

    Anyway, my comment was at least relevant to part of yinyang’s post.

  53. aeiou
    December 15th, 2011 at 22:20 | #53

    @Wahaha

    Probably the same idiots who hounded bale about supporting dictators and what not also made him take a 8hour drive to the middle of nowhere.

    The conversation must have gone something like this…

    liberal; hello bruce, why did you choose to participate in a communist propaganda film?
    batman; I didn’t. and where did you learn of my real identity?!
    liberal; don’t you feel a little guilty?! don’t you have a conscience?!
    batman; but..
    liberal; well would you like to repent? we are going to drive 8 hours to the middle of nowhere and we’re going to fight some security guards. your experience in crime fighting would be invaluable.
    batman; *sigh*. I you insist…

    I mean what was the purpose of dragging batman along? Did they think the guards would run at the sight of gotham city #1 crime fighter, much less know who he is? for that matter would Chen know or care he was speaking to batman? What’s he going to say? — “Have you seen my movies? Oh…. I’m sorry”

  54. Jim
    December 15th, 2011 at 22:34 | #54

    @aeiou

    I was actually wondering the same thing… I wonder if Bale got pumped up about Chen Guangcheng because he’s been receiving flak for his role in a government-sponsored Chinese movie. I also think the CNN cameramen had an angle to play — it’s much easier to risk being detained by some random thugs in a podunk Chinese village when you know the CCP would have to step in to save the laowai star of its prized new movie.

    I’m more interested in seeing how this plays out on the Chinese microblogs. I mean, it’s an interesting contrast: on one side, government support for broadcasting to the world the story of the horrible atrocities and oppression suffered by the Chinese during the Japanese invasion; on the other side, the CCP’s unrelenting efforts to hide its own continued oppression of Chinese people who are just trying to stand up for other Chinese.

  55. aeiou
    December 15th, 2011 at 22:39 | #55

    @Jim
    Didn’t look like a protest, it looked like they were intentionally ignoring security to get to someone under house arrest. I’d like to see what happens to people who tried to break into where Bradley manning is imprisoned — now that would be a job befitting batman.

  56. Raj
    December 16th, 2011 at 00:43 | #56

    It’s a shame to see the usual dumb comments from some people here, who in this case are having a go at Custer because he’s trying to be scholarly with respect to what happened.

    When discussing the “Nanking/Nanjing” massacre, it’s important to remember that a much wider area was effected, as Custer pointed out. Recognising war crimes shouldn’t be a case of looking where the most people were killed in a small area. Sometimes the worst war crimes are committed in an isolated dwelling in the middle of nowhere, with no neighbours or outside parties to help. It’s easy for the attention to focus to a major settlement like Nanjing, but in doing so the suffering of those elsewhere is largely forgotten.

    It’s like when discussing the Beijing massacres in 1989. The focus sometimes goes on the students, as they were the most noticeable group in the protests. But Beijing residents were also killed by the PLA in the crackdown because they were supporting the students at the time.

  57. WB
    December 16th, 2011 at 02:47 | #57

    To Raj, Richard and C Custer

    I don’t have particularly a bone to pick against people who are just being scholarly. But you can’t really ignore how what C Custer said is completely biased and he applied this scholarly standard selectively, only because of partisan motives. And it is not purely out of logic or reason, unlike what Richard says.

    I will embrace his statement, if you guys agree with the following:

    There has been no massacre in Tiananmen square, and everything CCP said on this topic in the past 20 years has been completely true. Because one define Tiananmen square only as that square ground strictly in front of Tiananmen, and nobody actually got killed on it. Everyone was killed just outside the square. Thus the amount of causality on the square is strictly 0.

    Do you agree?

    If you accuse us as “having a go at Custer” or ganging up on him, then is it not true that you guys are reflexively jumping to his defense, purely because of partisan reasons?

    Do you agree with this: you guys would not defend someone being “scholarly” in this sense about the holocaust?

  58. colin
    December 16th, 2011 at 03:29 | #58

    Wow, Raj, Custer and the duck all commenting in the same thread. The NED and their ilk must be paying big Christmas bonuses.

    Again I have to bring up the irony of the duck spouting anti-authoritarian rhetoric when he’s a tyrant in censoring his own blog’s comments.

  59. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 05:41 | #59

    @Raj

    Nice, Raj.

    I’m sure there are quite a few “Holocaust Deniers” who also tried to be “scholarly” with their accounting of the dead.

    (Now that we cleared up that his being “scholarly” is HIS point, and HIS point alone. Obviously, he was just lying about “agreeing with” us.)

    Kinda shows the sort of ethical backbone Custer has for being “scholarly”, IE. he can’t even say his point is his own, and live with whatever criticism that might come.

    That’s Custer. (and your excuse for him).

    I’m not sure what “Richard”/Duck was trying to say, he seems to want to explain a difference between the Nazi’s “evil” killings and American killings of Native Americans and Imperial Japanese killings of Chinese people, but then just kind of ran out of breath.

    I personally think Duck was trying to imply that somehow Nazi’s killings of Jews/etc. were more “racist”, more evil, (most evil), for some reasons that he can’t explain beyond the general terms.

    Maybe that’s just his personal feelings, so I don’t think anyone can logically explain such personally based distinctions. (By the same note, I imagine most Nanjing people would have very intense personal feelings about the Nanjing massacre, as many Native Americans have intense personal feelings about Wounded Knee/etc.).

    You want to take a “go” at the personal feelings about Nanjing Massacre, go ahead, play “scholarly” with the numbers, and live with labels like “Holocaust denier”.

  60. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 05:59 | #60

    Jim :@zack
    Bradley Manning was tried and convicted under the UCMJ; he’s incarcerated — officially, not some off-the-books house arrest. There are no thugs-for-hire surrounding his neighborhood. If you, Jet Li, or Jackie Chan want to protest Manning’s case and decry what you think is U.S. hypocrisy, you’re free to do that. You’re free to go to where he used to live, try to talk to his family, report on how they’re going about their lives, etc. You won’t be shoved and punched by thugs who cut off his entire family from the rest of the world. Indeed, last time I was at Quantico, outside one of the gates was a protest in support of freeing Bradley Manning…
    Anyway, my comment was at least relevant to part of yinyang’s post.

    I thought Manning’s PRE-trial hearing just started? http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/dec/16/bradley-manning-military-hearing-wikileaks?newsfeed=true

    Where are you getting your information, JIM?

  61. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 06:01 | #61

    @Jim

    outside one of the gates was a protest in support of freeing Bradley Manning”.

    yes, OUTSIDE. What would happen if someone try to go IN the gates to visit Manning?? Mace, Sound cannon?

  62. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 06:14 | #62

    Jim :@aeiou
    I was actually wondering the same thing… I wonder if Bale got pumped up about Chen Guangcheng because he’s been receiving flak for his role in a government-sponsored Chinese movie. I also think the CNN cameramen had an angle to play — it’s much easier to risk being detained by some random thugs in a podunk Chinese village when you know the CCP would have to step in to save the laowai star of its prized new movie.
    I’m more interested in seeing how this plays out on the Chinese microblogs. I mean, it’s an interesting contrast: on one side, government support for broadcasting to the world the story of the horrible atrocities and oppression suffered by the Chinese during the Japanese invasion; on the other side, the CCP’s unrelenting efforts to hide its own continued oppression of Chinese people who are just trying to stand up for other Chinese.

    On the other hand, now that the Western media made Bale into a “China Propagandist”, how are they going to turn him into “Rights Activist”?

    Wait, he was also that guy who went flaming nuts screaming at his assistant on set once, right?

    *Personally, I like his movies, but I don’t care what he does outside of movies. That’s why I don’t really care about people’s personal hobby causes. If he’s a jerk in person, I might still enjoy his movies.

    (But on the side note, I do note that a lot of actors/actresses pick up personal “causes”, because their movie careers are going nowhere. In which case, I stop going to their movies, because they are too desperate for my attention and money).

  63. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 06:20 | #63

    Yes, further note: Entertainers who are too desperate for publicity are not worth watching, because they are compensating their lack of ability to entertain by doing anything just for publicity. (And next day, they will be complaining that the Media is hounding them.)

    So, Bale, if you are doing this whole bit to generate publicity for yourself, I’m un-following you. :)

  64. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 06:41 | #64

    Maybe the guards knew about Bale’s violent history: http://themovieblog.com/2008/07/christian-bale-allegedly-assaults-his-own-family.

  65. pug_ster
    December 16th, 2011 at 06:43 | #65

    @Raj

    C Custer, scholarly? LOL, I almost fell off my chair reading this one. Is telling others that they don’t know how to read scholarly? Sounds more elitist than scholarly to me.

    @Jim

    On Christian Bale’s defense, I don’t blame on what he is doing. Unlike other actors like George Clooney, Christian Bale has never been involved in Political Activism. Greenpeace and World Wildlife Fund does not count. There has been criticism this whole week about him being in a movie for the ‘CCP propaganda.’ He will probably face worse criticism when he goes back to the States and try to promote this movie there. What better way to dispel that notion by pulling off a stunt like that? Of course, that means he won’t be starring in any more Chinese Movies. But if he didn’t pull off a stunt like that, it will Jeopardize his chances on future roles in Hollywood. This kind of crap sounds like McCartyism all over again.

  66. LOLZ
    December 16th, 2011 at 07:17 | #66

    On Bradly Manning, the fact of the matter is that he was arrested and sent to jail for what bringing about evidence of what he and many others thought was US conducting war atrocities. While the US government allows its people to protest on behalf of Manning and Wikileaks, it also tries its best to suppress wikileaks by strong arming financial institutions into denying donations on behalf of Wikileaks/Manning. It’s also no coincidence that not one major MSM reported much on Manning, let alone standing up for Manning. You can argue that the US is more “humane” when it comes to censorship but at the end of the day people like Manning and Wikileaks who makes the US government look bad will still be silenced.

  67. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 07:36 | #67

    I just want to clear up, about Manning:

    Jim wrote that Manning was “convicted”. I don’t know where he’s getting his information, but the news articles are saying that Manning is going through his PRE-trial hearing, clearly NOT convicted yet.

    So, let’s just clear this 1 point of fact 1st. Has Manning being held “incommunicado” for months (>1 year) without trial? http://bradleymanningmailrestrictions.blogspot.com/2011/01/bradley-manning-incommunicado.html

  68. LOLZ
    December 16th, 2011 at 07:42 | #68

    On Christian Bale getting attacked, it sounds like PR work for the Hollywood actor. Afterall, being made into a Chinese stooge (rightfully or wrongfully) by the Western media can be career ending. If I were him I would probably do the same thing. Although, I could never get the people who seriously believe that hollywood actors truly don’t give a damn about the general population into their own country would suddenly care about 3rd world poor.

    Still it’s sad to see Bale (IMO one of the best male hollywood actors) falling into the category of people who want to make money off the Chinese system, but at the same time want to be seen publicly as against the Chinese government.

  69. LOLZ
    December 16th, 2011 at 08:06 | #69

    richard :
    But Nazism per se, by its very nature, is evil because it is based on race and hatred, with the single-minded goal of extermination and aggression.

    Throughout history most religions practice race based hatred with single-minded goal of extermination and aggression. You can say that of modern sects of Christians, Muslims, Jews, even Buddhists. Are you going to say that religion is evil?

    IMO Nazism is evil not because it used hatred to exterminate its enemies and aggressively expand, but because the Nazis lost the war. History often makes the winners look like saints although in most cases the winners of wars are just as hateful and genocidal as the losers. This is because the winners get to write history in their perspective and the losers don’t.

  70. December 16th, 2011 at 08:45 | #70

    @LOLZ #69,

    Richard wrote:

    But Nazism per se, by its very nature, is evil because it is based on race and hatred, with the single-minded goal of extermination and aggression.

    Many of my Muslim friends would say:

    But Judaism per se, by its very nature, is evil because it is based on race and hatred, with the single-minded goal of extermination and aggression.

    Notions of hate and racism can be found throughout the scripture. Jews are the children of the one mighty God. They are the favored race. Although God created the world, God has many “enemies” – the other races. It is the Jews who will ultimately triumph though.

    Anyways, I completely agree with your comment in #69. The victors write history and to help support their legitimacy, make the losers look really, really bad. Yes, the Nazis were bad in many ways, but so were the allies. The truth is that no one wanted the Jews and there were anti-Semitic attitudes throughout the West – including UK and America. Nazis are made to look like this insatiable force of evil which the current world order guards against. That attitude – to me – says more about our current world order than the Nazis themselves…

  71. Jim
    December 16th, 2011 at 09:52 | #71

    raventhorn :
    I just want to clear up, about Manning:
    Jim wrote that Manning was “convicted”. I don’t know where he’s getting his information, but the news articles are saying that Manning is going through his PRE-trial hearing, clearly NOT convicted yet.
    So, let’s just clear this 1 point of fact 1st. Has Manning being held “incommunicado” for months (>1 year) without trial? http://bradleymanningmailrestrictions.blogspot.com/2011/01/bradley-manning-incommunicado.html

    you’re actually right for once — and I’m willing to admit when I make a mistake. My saying that Braddley Manning was convicted was just wrong. He’s only been charged.

  72. December 16th, 2011 at 10:43 | #72

    So, let’s just clear this 1 point of fact 1st. Has Manning being held “incommunicado” for months (>1 year) without trial?

    Happens all the time in the military. I find it inhumane but it’s definitely not unprecedented when the charges, true or false, are so serious. It’s a disgrace, but it’s not without precedent.

    Allen, here’s the distinction I’m hoping you’ll get: Yes, the Jews treat the Palestinians inhumanely. They have never, however, sought their extermination. If extermination were their goal they could have done it long ago, and they could do it today. They have the firepower and the strength. They won two Arab wars and never instituted mass extermination though they had the perfect opportunity to do so. If the Israelis had hunted down every man, woman, child and baby, put them in locked cattle cars, pushed them naked into gas chambers specifically designed for mass butchery, torturing many along the way by working them to death and performing medical experiments on them, then we have a viable comparison. There is good reason why when the word “evil” arises most people reflexively think of Hitler, not Mao or Stalin or Netanyahu or George W. Bush. Hitler is the gold standard of evil. I am no fan of today’s Israel, but to compare them to the evil of the Nazis is rather absurd. Nine million people butchered.

    Someone above said it was the English who created the first concentration camps. That may be true, I don’t know, but concentration camps are very common, especially when you have refugees crossing borders who need to be put up somewhere. That’s a concentration camp. Under the Nazis there were concentration camps like Dachau where political prisoners, criminals and some Jews (before the Holocaust took off) were kept, under vile circumstances. But those are nothing compared to the next level of concentration camp, the death camp, expressly built to quickly and conveniently slaughter millions upon millions of innocent people who posed no threat to Germany. The British never laid the groundwork for that. They never employed gas chambers to kill entire races. More than anything, these are quintessential examples of pure, incandescent evil without comparison. Babies, with their heads split open in front of their mothers, and much worse. The cruelty can legitimately be compared to the Japanese during the Nanjing massacre, but what sets it apart is the scale and the length of the crime, and the cooperation of so many branches of the state and the willing participation of chemical companies like IG Farben that made it all possible. The Nanjing massacre was an explosion of evil. The death camps were a long, slow river that went on for three years, calculated with blueprints and architectural drawings for the express purpose of annihilation, orchestrated by highly educated bureaucrats (the mastermind of the Holocaust, Reinhard Heidrich, played the violin beautifully). So it’s a different type of evil than most the world had ever seen before. Massacres at times of war were common, such as the murder of the Armenians by the Turks or, on a much smaller scale, the inexcusable Mylai massacre by American soldiers. Horrifying as these aberrations were, they were not comparable with the highly efficient, huge-scale death camps of Hitler, in which so many branches of society actively participated, from railroad engineers to concentration camp guards to carpenters and chemists.

    But let’s look at how this got started, and how got off track. In #8 Allen wrote in regard to Rabe, Humane acts should be recognized as humane acts. When they aren’t because of politics, that is propoganda. This is why I don’t like people bringing up “Nazi” as an end-all-be-all of all evil. That shows more our ignorance than anything else…

    To equate the Nazis with evil at its most sinister and terrible displays “ignorance”? Obviously, as I said in an earlier comment, there was no shortage of good Nazis who bravely committed wonderful deeds and saved thousands of lives, like Rabe and Schindler. But that doesn’t neutralize the fact that Nazism was pure evil on as large a scale as you can get. About 9 million Slavs, Jews, gypsies, homosexuals and other “undesirables” were butchered for no reason other than “racial purity.” How could Nazism not be perceived as the archetype for evil?

    To say the only reason Hitler is seen as evil is because he lost the war is nonsense. He had already shown his colors and won international horror during kristallnacht in 1938. He was already seen as evil by many. The best proof that this is not just some allied invention is that his own people, the Germans, view him as the most evil and dangerous man who ever lived (and again, I lived there for two years and am not exaggerating a bit). They give tours of Auschwitz and Buchenwald so the world can see for itself. The argument that we was branded evil only because he lost the war is simply false. Tell the Jewish mother freezing to death waiting to get into the busy gas chambers of Treblinka that Hitler wasn’t pure evil.

  73. jxie
    December 16th, 2011 at 11:02 | #73

    @richard #39,

    The evil of the Nazis should never be denied or minimized. No matter how bad you may perceive the US to be, the evil legacy of the Nazis remains, and in and of itself is the very apotheosis of evil. If commenters here wish to say otherwise it’s their privilege.

    If we rank human evilness in 0 to 100 scales, with 100 being the most evil, Nazi hardly occupied the apotheosis 100. Mongols’ sacking of Baghdad by just about every metric, was more evil than Nazi. Other than systemic killing of all, including women and children, stomping the Caliph to death, Mongols also burned down palaces, libraries, and even hospitals. The sacking of Baghdad basically ended the Islamic Golden Age. Nazi Germany did loot and steal from the others, but as far as cultural preservation goes, they were more decent than most – burning and destroying other people’s cultural artifacts were not their MO. After the Nazi Germany was defeated, most of those looted and stolen artifacts were returned to their rightful owners, but you can hardly say that for other evil deeds in the past – but I digress.

    The ultimate decision of extermination in the Death Camps, which was by far the vilest act by the Nazis, was made by Himmler. Hitler was either not aware of it, or aware of it much later. The extermination was pretty much hidden from the public. Even with their anal-retentive record keeping, there was no direct Nazi record on how many they actually exterminated in those camps. We have a pretty good idea how many they exterminated, because first some of the camps were taken over by the Allies while the killing was still ongoing; then there were strong circumstantial records such as rail records, arrival records at camps, etc. Obviously what went on in those camps, even the Nazis weren’t particularly proud of them.

    Imagine the Third Reich had another 100 years of rules, would the people still know the extent of that part of the history? The Nazi didn’t become the victor who got to write the history. Could there be many Himmlers in smaller scale in the history of the Continental America between the white settlers vis-a-vis the Native Tribes? We do not know that one way or the other now. But if you go by the intellectual foundation, the Nazis were certainly not alone. Personally I tend to think the theory that up to 200 million Native Americans had been murdered (but largely not recorded), probably is more credible than the prevailing theory that most of the Native Americans were killed by some Old Continent diseases – the exchange of infectious diseases to a new population base was bidirectional yet the damage to the point of massive depopulation was only one-way?

    I want to make perfectly clear that I am not making excuse for any of these acts and being angry at any one of them, but rather support Allen’s #37 comment.

  74. December 16th, 2011 at 11:21 | #74

    Could there be many Himmlers in smaller scale in the history of the Continental America between the white settlers vis-a-vis the Native Tribes?

    If we could cover that up no one would know about the extermination of Native Americans.

    Hitler did no. In the words of historian Hugh Trevor Roper, “No Hitler, no holocaust.” Himmler did not conceive it, Heydrich and a circle of others did, with Himmler’s input of course. Read Ian Kershaw’s masterful biography of Hitler to understand how nothing on the magnitude of the Holocaust could have been carried out without his approval. No historian except a crackpot neo-Nazi like David Irving believes Hitler did not know from the very beginning. But even if he didn’t it was a product of Nazism, and that’s what was so evil, much more than one man.

    As I’ve said many times, the extermination of the Native Americans is one of the most sickening crimes ever. There are many inhuman, barbaric acts of history. None equals the systematic, methodical murder of innocents and subjecting many to hideous medical experiments, in my eyes. But this is partly subjective, so maybe we should just agree to disagree on who gets the prize for No.1. All I insist upon is that Hitler/Nazism is way up there.

    The Holocaust was not unknown outside of Germany. Word had leaked to the Allies and to the Vatican by 1943 or so. The deportations to the east were not a secret. I can’t say what would have happened had Hitler won the war, but, considering what he did in Russia and Poland and nearly everywhere else, I don’t believe he’d have been seen as a choir boy. He was already reviled as a deranged monster by the time the US entered the war. Journalists like William Shirer had already told the world after Kristallnacht that Hitler was a madman with an incredible capacity for evil. Anyway, I think we all know where the other stands.

  75. Charles Liu
    December 16th, 2011 at 11:31 | #75

    @Jim

    Nope, Baidu “Christian Bale”, “克里斯蒂安 贝尔” both turned up uncensored results (eg. no obligatory legal notice.)

    Also I would urge Bale to look into Chen Guangchen’s financial connection with the NED and a mysterious “Monica Fund” that pumped millions into HRW for anti-China propaganda prior to the Beijing Olympics:

    http://www.google.com/#hl=en&q=%22Monica+Fund%22+National+Endowment+Democracy

    BTW here’s another example of Western media propaganda. Those men who put up check point to the village are not police, but villagers that didn’t want these attention. Anybody actually visit rural village knows olive green old military uniform is very popular with the civilian population.

  76. December 16th, 2011 at 12:32 | #76

    @richard #72

    You wrote:

    Allen, here’s the distinction I’m hoping you’ll get: Yes, the Jews treat the Palestinians inhumanely. They have never, however, sought their extermination. If extermination were their goal they could have done it long ago, and they could do it today.

    I’m assuming you are responding to my comment in #70.

    Please note that I readily concede there are differences between current day Israel and Nazi Germany. All comparisons of history will involve differences. And there are constraints today on Israel that are very different that the constraint on Hitler – most importantly, history. But there are enough similarities that make many like me shudder…

    I differ with you in particular on your assessment that Israel’s goal is not extermination. What is extermination? It is the destruction of a people on a particular land. Israel – in its goal to create a “Jewish state” – is necessarily about exterminating the Palestinian people. It is about either making their lives so difficult that they move, they give up, or that they simply perish. (See, e.g. http://www.bearcanada.com/fae/israel/genocideingazaintro.html).

    Oh – but you might say, clearing a land for Jews is not genocide, it only seeks to move Palestinians out, not destroy them. If so, I can argue that was Hitler’s intent as well. He didn’t mean to expand on a world campaign to kill Jews everywhere. He only meant to purify Aryan lands. It’s only when the British, Americans, and others refuse Jews, and when a paranoia that Jews are working with external forces to destroy the Fatherland reached a certain threshold that Hitler embarked on his “final solution.” (See, e.g., http://www.bearcanada.com/fae/israel/benjaminfreedmanspeech.html).

    In any case, going to why we even got here: you made a point that you think Hitler is evil because he is racist and aggressive. If that is the core of evil, many people can think not only of present day Israel, but the core of Judaism, to represent evil. Again instead of Judaism, I could have probably picked Christianity, too, and made similar points; there are enough ideologies based on race, culture and aggression to make it easy to argue that if that is the core of “evil,” I see Hitler in many other things in the West today…

    (Note I made two references to bearcanada.com; I did that only because I believe the author made many bold and good points – in a way that brings the prejudice against China into the equation also)

  77. December 16th, 2011 at 13:45 | #77

    Much of what the lead prosecutor at Nuremberg (Robert Jackson) claimed to be the fundamental evil of the Nazis was their waging of aggressive wars and the intentional killing of civilians in these aggressive wars. Israel is guilty of these crimes. They are also guilty of what can only be called either apartheid or some close analogy. Genocide is the worst crime many would concede but there are many crimes so bad that satanic and evil may also be excellent descriptions of what they are. Slavery, torturing innocent people was also such a crime against humanity.

  78. December 16th, 2011 at 16:04 | #78

    Much of what the lead prosecutor at Nuremberg (Robert Jackson) claimed to be the fundamental evil of the Nazis was their waging of aggressive wars and the intentional killing of civilians in these aggressive wars. Israel is guilty of these crimes.

    How many civilians has Israel killed, and how did they kill them? Was it an institutionalized, ongoing project blessed by the state and the business community resulting in millions of deaths? Does it really bear comparison with what Hitler did, and if so, how? Nine million innocents, medical experiments, gas chambers. How many babies’ skulls did Israelis smash into walls like the Nazis did? What was Israel’s equivalent that would put them up there with Hitler? And at least one of Israel’s two wars was absolutely NOT aggressive, they were attacked.

  79. jxie
    December 16th, 2011 at 16:15 | #79

    If we could cover that up no one would know about the extermination of Native Americans.

    You didn’t quite catch the drift of this conversation. First, there is no “we” in it — you are not a part of it. Moreover, a lot of the killings were done outside of the modern-day US, or before the US was founded. All the murders of Native Americans recorded in the European-written history, can account for maybe 1 million deaths. If the theory of up to 200 million had been killed is to believed, let’s use the analogy of a baby seal on top of the tip of a homogonous iceberg – the recorded killings were like the baby seal, while the real killings were like the iceberg itself. The murders would have been done over a rather long period of time, but 200 million is still a very disturbing number. The worldwide population didn’t go over 1 billion until about 1800. We are effectively living in a world as if another Third Reich, arguably nastier one, had won the war.

    If the Third Reich had won the war, what would the historians in Europe explain the disappearance of Jews and Gypsies after a couple of centuries? I bet in that parallel universe, the prevailing belief would be in the harsh environment during the Great War to secure the European Unification, the Jews and Gypsies who were genetically disposed to some diseases mostly died off on their own. Sure, “we might have killed some of them…”

  80. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 17:00 | #80

    Jim :

    you’re actually right for once — and I’m willing to admit when I make a mistake. My saying that Braddley Manning was convicted was just wrong. He’s only been charged.

    Me: 1 right, Jim: 1 wrong.

    Just so we are clear on score so far.

  81. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 17:24 | #81

    @Charles Liu

    Hey, maybe this whole Bale-Guard scuffle was a setup to further promote the movie!

    I mean, think about it: Bale does a stunt scuffle with some Chinese “Guards”, and Bam, he’s instant Human Rights Activist in the West.

    Then, his movie goes hot, sell out, block buster for “Chinese propaganda”.

    Seriously, I watched the video clip of the “scuffle”, it was weak! Bale can do a better “scuffle” in his movies on any bad days! I know guys in college who got worse treatment from bouncers at bars on any weekend. (Which is why it’s weak)

  82. scl
    December 16th, 2011 at 17:36 | #82

    @ jim,

    Israelis have roughed up quite a few Palestinians, does that make Holocaust more interesting?

  83. LOLZ
    December 16th, 2011 at 17:37 | #83

    richard :
    Yes, the Jews treat the Palestinians inhumanely. They have never, however, sought their extermination.

    By Richard’s definition, evil is when you use racial hatred to absorb and exterminate. His defense of Israel’s action hinges on the term “extermination”. His logic goes something like, because the Israel’s army didn’t systematically gas and kill all Palestinians on the stop they are not evil. However, Israel government does support systemic bulldozing of Palestinians homes, taking of Palestinians lands, destruction of Palestinians business opportunities, etc. While such actions do not kill Palestinians immediately, but if you destroy other people’s homes (build your own home on top of their old homes so they can never build their own home there) and destroy people’s opportunities to make a living normally (burning down Palestinian olive crops is just the tip of the iceberg), you can argue that is not much better than outright extermination.

    But, IMO you get into a slippery slope when you start to quantify “evilness”. If you look at the acts themselves, what happened to the Jews under Nazis aren’t all that much different than what happened to the Chinese under the Japanese. Civilians were killed indiscriminately (genocide), sick medical experiments were carried out, rapes, murders, robberies everywhere. The obvious difference between the two is the numbers, which is often difficult to track. When people start to quantify the “evilness” of different acts by counting the victims, they often end up defending other cases of unsavory acts (intentional or not), as Richard is doing here with Israel. The Japan war apologists often argue that because Nanjing Massacre’s numbers look inflated by the Chinese government, it’s somehow more justified. What Richard don’t seem to get is the fact that should Nazis kill 5 million less jews it doesn’t mean that the Nazis are less evil. It just means that they are less efficient at carrying out their tasks.

  84. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 17:50 | #84

    What most people forget is that Nanjing was but 1 incident in a long Japanese occupation of China (and rest of Asia).

    Estimated 17-22 MILLION civilians dead total in China during the 2nd Sino-Japanese War (and occupation).

    Even in terms of numbers, that should give one some perspective of the scale of “EVIL” in comparison.

  85. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 18:01 | #85

    Some have argued (by scholarly use of numbers) that Nanjing was not a “Holocaust”.

    I would say, Nanjing was but only 1 City where many of the Holocaust victims were buried, and the bodies of the rest of the Holocaust victims were scattered all over Asia, without any ashes or tombs to even remember them by.

    Unlike in Europe, the Japanese Imperial Army did not take the time to set up “camps” in their killing of 17-22 MILLION Chinese Civilians.

  86. Wahaha
    December 16th, 2011 at 19:21 | #86

    …..on the other side, the CCP’s unrelenting efforts to hide its own continued oppression of Chinese people who are just trying to stand up for other Chinese.

    ****************************

    Jim,

    How did you know he stood up for other Chinese not for himself ?

    Do you think your media and journalists stand up for people or for themselves ?

    If Christian Bale was forced to do that to secure his career in Hollywood, you should start questioning the so-called “freedom” in US, shouldnt you ?

  87. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 19:35 | #87

    @Wahaha

    On the other side, the Western governments’ unrelenting efforts to openly crackdown on the “99%” who are the People, is quite enlightening.

  88. raventhorn
    December 16th, 2011 at 19:49 | #88

    “However, a scuffle broke out at Chen Guangcheng’s house between Christian Bale and private security guards.”

    OK, why is Bale not suing the “private security guards”??

    http://www.movieweb.com/news/christian-bale-caught-in-real-life-the-dark-knight-rises-cop-chase

  89. December 16th, 2011 at 22:02 | #89

    @LOLZ #83

    What Richard don’t seem to get is the fact that should Nazis kill 5 million less jews it doesn’t mean that the Nazis are less evil. It just means that they are less efficient at carrying out their tasks.

    Well said.

    By the way, if we want to go by numbers (see e.g. raventhorn’s comment above), why aren’t the Japanese the model of pure evil in Western eyes? The only reason I can think of is that Chinese lives don’t count – or at least don’t count as much…

  90. pug_ster
    December 16th, 2011 at 23:05 | #90

    Don’t forget 6 million died as the result of the disgusting Vietnam War, tens of thousands of people today affected by agent orange, thousands of acres of what used to be farmland no longer usable, future generations will be affected as a result of agent orange. Somehow this kind of outrage seems to be missing in America’s history books. What I find amazing is that many people in Vietnam actually have to courage to forgive what has happened and move on while many Americans have little remorse. This is a total shame.

  91. December 16th, 2011 at 23:52 | #91

    @jxie #79

    We are effectively living in a world as if another Third Reich, arguably nastier one, had won the war.

    If the Third Reich had won the war, what would the historians in Europe explain the disappearance of Jews and Gypsies after a couple of centuries? I bet in that parallel universe, the prevailing belief would be in the harsh environment during the Great War to secure the European Unification, the Jews and Gypsies who were genetically disposed to some diseases mostly died off on their own. Sure, “we might have killed some of them…”

    Very good points indeed.

  92. Raj
    December 17th, 2011 at 03:43 | #92

    @WB

    There has been no massacre in Tiananmen square, and everything CCP said on this topic in the past 20 years has been completely true.

    There was no massacre in Tiananmen Square, but there was in Beijing as a wider area. It’s correct to refer to the “Tiananmen Square protests”, the “Tiananmen Square protest crackdowns” or the “1989 Beijing massacres”. But I don’t like it when people suggest the dead were in the Square. It focuses on the students to the detriment of the ordinary citizens supporting their protest that were also killed. It ignores the cowardly way that people were hunted down, having already left the Square and complied with the authorities’ instructions, and the fact that some were even ambushed in narrow allies with nowhere to run or hide.

    Which is why it’s important to not focus on Nanjing but the entire area around it where the war crimes were committed. As I said, sometimes the worst war crime is committed when someone is isolated in the middle of nowhere, with no neighbours or anyone else to witness what happens, let alone intervene.

    Do you agree with this: you guys would not defend someone being “scholarly” in this sense about the holocaust?

    That’s incredibly vague – you aren’t even telling me what this person is supposed to be saying.

    But I guess the equivalent (per what Custer said) would be if someone had said that far more Jews were killed in a huge basement under the Reichstag than in Auschwitz. I might not have read his/her sources on that, but I would support that person’s right to argue that it was true.

  93. Al
    December 17th, 2011 at 07:05 | #93

    There was no “massacre” in Beijing neither. There were fights, and riots in some part of the city (notably near Muxidi bridge), in which both civilians and soldiers died. To avoid focusing on soldiers torched alive inside their trucks and tanks before any fire was opened, as well as on the fact the the first troops sent in didn’t have any weapon, and focusing only on civilian casualties (anyway MUCH MUCH MUCH less numerous than what have been “advertised” in the west), ignoring completely soldiers killed by molotov cocktails and the like is kinda partial way to look at what happened. It also avoid to focus on the fact that those student were left free to protest and occupy the most central square of the capital of the country for more or less one month, before giving them an ultimatum. As Kissinger also said, if the chinese government made an error, it was to let the protest go on for that much time, if it had happened in the US we would have used force to clear the square much earlier.

  94. wwww1234
    December 17th, 2011 at 08:29 | #94

    @Raj
    “It ignores the cowardly way that people were hunted down, having already left the Square and complied with the authorities’ instructions, and the fact that some were even ambushed in narrow allies with nowhere to run or hide.”

    Those in the square were students. Those fighting the troops and died were another group of non-students, and that occurred one and half hour by walk away from the square. No one was hunted down or ambushed, the students all went home unhurt . You cannot simply speculate with your wishful thinking, facts are facts.

  95. December 17th, 2011 at 14:35 | #95

    @YinYang
    It’s definitely not just the BBC (whose story is actually from French press AFP, which is who you should be contacting). The particular article you put up is definitely one of the worst ones, along with the Guardian’s piece of bullshit. A compilation of many of them:
    http://cfensi.dramaddicts.com/forum/blog.php/2011/12/13/the-flowers-of-war-brings-out-the-worst-of-western-media/

    So far, the only English press that doesn’t outright claim the film is propaganda has been the Associated Press and the NYT. The other one that I nominate for worst reporting on the film is the Guardian, which publishedan entire piece based on the false claim that the film was government funded, and then goes on with pretty much every other sentence being just plain wrong.
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2011/dec/15/china-film-the-flowers-of-war

    I’ve contacted CNN, Variety (which was the one who started the claim and everyone else just assumed to be true without doing their own research), the Guardian and the LA Times to disprove their claim that the film was funded by the Bank of China (with a statement from the publicist of the film) two days ago, but none of them have corrected it so far.

  96. melektaus
    December 17th, 2011 at 15:46 | #96

    @richard

    How many civilians has Israel killed

    Too many.

    , and how did they kill them?

    Sometimes by shooting them, sometimes by burning them alive using white phosphorus and sometimes by bombing them.

    There are literally, sniper towers in many parts of Occupied Palestine. IDF snipers routinely shoot at people (many of them children) from these towers. A friend of mine took several photos of these and it is illegal to even take photos of them.

    Was it an institutionalized, ongoing project blessed by the state and the business community resulting in millions of deaths?

    Yes, it was. Millions? No. But too many non the less.

  97. melektaus
    December 17th, 2011 at 16:49 | #97

    idarklight :
    @YinYang

    So far, the only English press that doesn’t outright claim the film is propaganda has been the Associated Press and the NYT.

    I saw a NYT article that did mention it was “anti-Japanese” propaganda.

  98. Wahaha
  99. zack
    December 17th, 2011 at 20:17 | #99

    if it doesn’t win an oscar, the Chinese government can interpret that as the hollywood-media-industrial complex as being inherently anti-Chinese and continue shutting out Hollywood companies from the lucrative Chinese market.

    door swings both ways; the day i see an ethnic Chinese actor playing the main character (and not someone who could pass for white like brandon lee, but an actual han Chinese Chinese like jay chou) and not just bringing it but being portrayed as banging white chicks-like raunchy hot sex scenes where the masculinity of the Chinese man is not denied (as it has and still is in contemporary hollywood), then maybe, just maybe i’ll consider the American film establishment as being genuine in wanting to cooperate with the Chinese

  100. December 17th, 2011 at 22:35 | #100

    Check out the documentary film, “Slanted Screen,” featuring Asian actors talking about their battle for acceptance in Hollywood.

    But I think the answer is more in the form of “Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.” China has to make more movies with bigger budget that foreigners like. That trend has been great.

    I suggest readers go and watch “The Flowers of War” (“金陵十三钗”), because Hollywood notices revenue numbers.

  101. zack
    December 17th, 2011 at 22:42 | #101

    @YinYang
    films like ‘crouching tiger hidden dragon’ are geared more for mainstream american audiences and it appears american audiences have some sort of innate fear of seeing white women being with non white men-so if a film does contain such interracial relationships, it’s invariably based on that relationship.

    i might go and see ‘The Flowers of War’, not just because i like Zhang Yimou and Christian bale’s works but because yes, there ought to be more awareness amongst Americans of what their allies, the Japanese did during the war, that when Chinese ppl object to the visits to Yasakuni, that perhaps they can understand.

    i wont hold my breath though-on that nor on seeing a hollywood film with an Asian lead that isn’t typecast or stereotyped to death. American men are notoriously insecure about their sexuality and masculinity

  102. December 18th, 2011 at 08:42 | #102

    @zack
    Why should Hollywood cast an Asian male lead in the same light as a Caucasian or even African American lead? Hollywood caters to its largest market and pender to their taste and prejudice. Of course some would argue that it is Hollywood that shaped their opinion in the first place. However, I believe this is just one aspect, news outlet have similar clout in swaying public opinion. The rise of China as a large market might reduce the stereotyping of Asian male but to have what you have described probably requires a total paradigm shift. It is rare that even HK, Taiwan or mainland making a movie that you describe.

    @Wahaha
    Yes, the prejudice displayed by the author is shocking. The comment is a better read though.

  103. December 18th, 2011 at 09:14 | #103

    @melektaus
    Since each of the stories have been unfortunately been put up many times, I was only counting the original stories. The NYT reposted a couple of the crappy stories, but their main story did a pretty good job of saying that while it has come under fire, here are all the reasons why it differs from government needs.

  104. December 19th, 2011 at 12:45 | #104

    Picture of comfort women statue (erected recently) in front of Japanese Embassy in Seoul (with Xinhua reporting):

  105. December 20th, 2011 at 06:16 | #105

    Some really gruesome pictures.

    http://tonyp4nanjing.shutterfly.com/

  106. December 20th, 2011 at 06:18 | #106

    @YinYang
    Is the empty chair for the thousands of Jap animals that raped her?

    It is a fact that two countries report differently on the same historical event like the Brit on Opium Wars and on early American history. Otherwise, the Japs including their ‘leaders’ would not pay respect to their war criminals.

  107. dan
    December 20th, 2011 at 11:38 | #107

    TonyP4,
    -‘Is the empty chair for the thousands of Jap animals that raped her?’

    I hope not. That would be an utter insult to the victims. I see it as more an introspective and evocative symbol. A symbol of a life/family these women could have but were destroyed by the animals. Half their lives were made empty; it is a void, a vacuum that nothings could fill it. It is left there blank as an eternal testament of a damaged and hollowed life these victims have to go through and to continue their suffering until the end…

  108. December 20th, 2011 at 11:53 | #108

    @TonyP4

    I like Dan’s perspective.

    Another take is that perhaps the empty chair is for the men of Korea who died in the war – who was or could have been her husband. This woman is thus depicted to bear two wounds alone – one of the crimes done on herself, and another of the crime done to her spouse, her family, her nation – her protector….

  109. zack
    December 20th, 2011 at 20:37 | #109

    @Ray
    famed China hand, Shaun Rein lays the smackdown on CNN and Bale
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesleadershipforum/2011/12/20/shame-on-cnn-for-its-christian-bale-stunt/

    now i like Bale, i admire him as an actor, but i wonder if he pulled this stunt out of fear of being portrayed as being ‘in cahoots with the Chinese gov’ back home in hollywood, home of the holier-than-thou jerk offs who pander to the dalai cliquie. If he did it out of concern of office politics, it would make sense and hollywood has been known to blacklist famous actors and directors for doing things the guild reckons as being ‘incorrect’. like ahem mel gibson ahem and even charlie chaplin .

  110. December 20th, 2011 at 22:05 | #110

    @zack
    After all Bale has to take care of his home base. Unless China becomes the largest Hollywood market, it will always play the part as portrayed by the US media. This is the same reason Stephen Speilberg opted out of the 2008 Beijing Olympic.

    To the west, there can only be an evil CCP, there is no room for discussion on this issue. Any alternate view is drown out.

  111. raventhorn
    December 21st, 2011 at 06:27 | #111

    Shaun Rein and Adam Minter stated the point well enough:

    CNN-style Media “confrontations” highlight through narrow incidents, to broadly condemn entire nations and political systems as “bad”.

    (I think I said similar earlier regarding many Protesters in general).

    I mean, seriously, what’s the difference between this latest stunt and the kind of generalizations in 100’s of old Hollywood Racist Stereotypes in movies and TV’s??

    If someone goes to interview 1 (and not to mention the other 100’s) homeless person in NYC, does that showcase how “bad” NYC and US is??

  112. pug_ster
    December 21st, 2011 at 07:08 | #112

    It is not even worth getting pissed over CNN because this is what CNN represents, Western propaganda. Chinese people knows this, so why bother? I’m more disappointed in Bale who is trying to bite off hand that try to feed it.

  113. December 21st, 2011 at 10:53 | #113

    This whole CNN/Bale incident reminds me yet as another example of how vile the Western media are.

    Apparently, fake beat-up photos of Bale have circulated too on Weibo:
    http://www.zonaeuropa.com/201112a.brief.htm#007

    ESWN made this comment I thought was interesting:

    As one might expect, this story was not covered by the mainstream media in China, but the microbloggers were free to discuss it.

    To me, I think societies need to view media as more a proactive and helpful tool. When the media descend into tabloid trash most of the time, then I think such situation has a cancerous effect on society.

    Nipping at the buds on this fake beat-up photos at its source is applying Chinese law, and in my opinion the right place to address such issues. Giving this tabloid crap extra attention cheapens the utility of media. And I have no doubt this CNN stunt is exposed in the various places that document Western media misconduct – anti-CNN comes to mind – and that’s where such should be relegated to.

  114. jxie
    December 23rd, 2011 at 15:47 | #114

    You have to hand it to some of the Western journalists in China — they make the stereotypical blonde in the blonde jokes look like a genius. Propaganda? If somebody can find out the one who actually asked that question to Bale in the Premiere’s Q&A session, which Bale had to defend the film was not a propaganda film. That journalist deserves the title of “the stupidest person in the world”.

    Once the meme tying “Bale” & “Propaganda” together, the dark humor in life is set in motion and it can’t be stopped. You see, once a negative meme about China is started, however untruthful it is, it must be sustained – it’s actually easier to preach heliocentric view AND Lutheran believes together to some 16th century Catholics, than correcting the untruthful negative views on China today. Of course, after Bale (or more like his publicist) realized the meme might be detrimental to his future films in the West, he had to compensate that with a PR stunt. If you had a time machine and could go back to December 10, 2011 and asked Bale, I’d bet $1 million to $1 that Bale had no clue who Chen Guangcheng was. While on the topic of forced abortion (and “one-child policy”), just remember morally you can’t be a part of the problem without being a part of the solution. If you want to reduce abortions in China (Or India, which actually arguably is worse), you have to be willing to open the immigration gate much wider open in relatively sparsely population countries (US, Canada, Australia, etc.).

    Once upon a time, Zhang Yimou was a great film director (“Red Sorghm”, “To Live”, “Not One Less”, etc.). Lately he has become less relevant as far as film making goes. Some of his films still had great box office results. IMO what has been lacking is his storytelling ability, compared to say Feng Xiaogang. The Film “Flowers of the War” was an attempt at both the box office and potential awards. You see, with everything going on around Nanking in December of 1937, he figured out the story of an American drifter to tell, but hey, that might sell well in the oversea markets. Now the chances of great oversea box office, and award winning, are both dimmer. The one who is pissed by “the stupidest person in the world” the most, is probably Zhang Yimou.

    Bale is a good actor, known for his professionalism and devotion. He had managed to lose a lot of weight and totally change his physique for two critically acclaimed films: “The Machinist” and “The Fighter”, with the latter winning him an Oscar Award. There is no surprise that he became the leading man in both the Terminator and Batman series. He probably gets paid well in Zhang’s movie, likely somewhere between what he made in “The Machinist” (next to nothing), and in the Terminator and Batman series ($20 to $40 million depending on the bonus clauses). Most of the Hollywood big name actors swing between the 2 modes: making some artsy films for awards and cred, and then blockbuster films to get paid. Bale’s CNN stunt is fully understandable – he can’t turn “rogue” as far as his image goes. The film was supposed to a gap filler in his career until the next Batman installment.

  115. jxie
    December 23rd, 2011 at 20:37 | #115

    A bit more background in terms of money (ball-park figures):

    The highest grossed film in China ever was Avatar, with a box office at US$200 million (and a worldwide take of $2.7 billion, which is also the highest grossed movie worldwide ever). The highest domestically made movies were 4: “Red Cliff” I & II, “Let the Bullets Fly”, and “Aftershock”. Each grossed about $100 million. Red Cliff I & II each made about $40 million in China, $50 million in Japan and another $10 million everywhere else. “Let the Bullets Fly” and “Afershock” made almost all in China. The high gross of “Red Cliff” I & II in Japan could be explained by a few factors:

    * Kaneshino (half Japanese half Taiwanese) & Nakamura
    * John Woo has a strong following in Japan
    * Japanese’s fascination of the Three Kingdom Period

    The production cost of “Flowers of the War” is close to $100 million, which is by far the highest so far in Chinese made films. It also means that anything south of $200 million in box office, the film will end up losing money. Zhang probably banked on Bale’s recognition and his Olympic Game Opening Ceremony fame, and hoped for a strong American and European showing much like “Red Cliff” I & II in Japan. As it stands, I think it will end up as a commercial failure. I have not seen the film so I don’t know if it’s any good, but the storyline doesn’t seem to be that appealing to me. Anyway, if the “stupidest person in the world” hadn’t asked that dumb question, and the Western world’s way of dealing Chinese issues hadn’t been so messed up, would the film sell well in the overseas markets? I highly doubt that.

  116. jxie
    December 23rd, 2011 at 21:02 | #116

    The more accurate box office numbers for the films mentioned above:

    * Avatar Chinese market: $182 million
    * Red Cliff I worldwide: $127 million
    * Red Cliff II worldwide: $119 million
    * Let the Bullets Fly: $111 million
    * Aftershock: $100 million

  117. Wayne
    December 24th, 2011 at 04:20 | #117

    @zack
    Exactly.

    Why a movie about such an important and horrific event has to have a white man playing the hero, rescuing Chinese women?

    Obviously the white audience to which it will try and sell itself will only watch movies where the white man is a hero.

    Zhang Yimou has made a wrong move here. It is disgusting that he could not portray a Chinese man in the lead, heroic role.

    As for Hollywood, it is so obviously racist that one would have to be utterly deluded not to notice it.

    Almost every single movie which involves an interracial pairing, whether between whites and asians, whites and blacks, ALWAYS has the male lead as a white man.

    Zhang Yimou is obviously completely oblivious to these racial dynamics – that is to be kind to him.

    To be a little more harsh, but perhaps more realistic, Zhang Yimou probably feels the need for validation from a white man and from a white audience to confirm in his own mind that he is a competent filmaker.

  118. jxie
    December 25th, 2011 at 14:48 | #118

    Wayne, brother, been reading some of your comments. Don’t know how to start responding to you…

    In 12/1937, the saviors of many Chinese around Nanjing were indeed white folks. The nationstate of China then simply couldn’t protect their lives. There were many refuges saved by Westerners in private residences, churches, organizations, etc. — and that’s the historical truth. If it makes you happier, a couple of years later, a Chinese diplomat named Ho Feng-Shan saved thousands of “white” Jews in Vienna.

    That part being history has NOTHING to do with you today, being yourself and in your own skin, hopefully comfortably. You can’t go negative about the world and expect to have a happy life. The future is unknown, and it’s up to you to create it, with a positive attitude.

  119. jxie
    December 25th, 2011 at 15:17 | #119

    Bale, obviously is a flied-by activist serving one main objective, which is making sure his image doesn’t take a hit sort of like Tom Cruise did in the mid-2000s (granted Cruise’s case was mostly self-inflicted). It’s great image management, and a good PR move — I would do the same so can’t fault the guy.

    An interesting thing is this blind activist Chen Guangcheng who all of sudden gets a lot more attention. Personally I agree that he might have been wronged, against the backdrop of a host of very complicated issues centered on the One-Child Policy, abortion, fresh water scarcity in Northern China, population density, Malthusian limitations and the cycles in Chinese history, etc. and an issue that nobody seems to be discussing: global immigration right. Anyway, have you asked these questions: Why this activist? Why this topic? Did you make the choice and the choice was made for you?

    Let’s say there is 5% of the chance of an American criminal conviction is a wrongful one, and another 5% of the chance a prisoner being raped in prison. (Both are quite likely under-estimated.) Statistically speaking, you have 5000 American prisoners being at any time wrongly convicted and brutally raped in prison. Well you can easily blow up the story of any one of them, which can be far more grotesque, and start a new activism. The problem is your activism won’t offer a real-world solution to a rather complicated topic that involves at least: underfunded and over-crowded prisons, three-strike legal code, inequity in quality legal representation, etc.

    The point isn’t “well if you did, I can certainly do that,” but rather

    1. Often time if you get passed the individual, the activism itself really isn’t getting anybody anywhere other than in the grand scheme of things, wasting everybody’s time.
    2. Well, why wasn’t another activist, sometimes activist back home, chosen for you? You actually don’t have an answer to any of the problems, don’t you? – which is why an activist so far away was chosen for you.

  120. Wayne
    December 25th, 2011 at 15:46 | #120

    jxie, come on , there are many many ways a movie about the Nanjing could have been themed, least among them featuring a white man trying to screw our women. And in any case these sorts of movies never need to be 100% accurate replays of anyone’s version of historical truth. There was a WWII submarine movie made a few years ago. It showed the Americans as having cracked the enigma code – or something like that, whereas it was in fact the British who did it. Remember these movies are not documentaries.

    White folk, on balance did enormous damage to China for well over a century and a half. If a few Chinese were saved by a few white diplomats or priests, that hardly starts to balance the ledger sheet.

    How about a blockbuster movie showing the British invasions of the 19th Century, of the devestation wrought by opium, or a movie about the heroic Yihetuan killing British and American and other white invaders? If Zhang Yimou made such a movie though, how much play do you reckon he would get in the West? Of course not much.

    So Zhang Yimou instead sells out.

    Zhang Yimou has a history of disparaging the Chinese man for the amusement of his Western audiences ala Raise the Red Lantern (and of course swooping the foreign film awards). Now we have another movie which will be shown widely on the mainland, and which in the end will remove the last vestiges of any sort of social prohibitions on our women marrying outside of their race.

    Again the question is where are your movies produced by Hollywood with an analogous theme – with a non-white man rescuing a bevy of white damsels?

    Yet Zhang Yimou, like too many chinese rushes in to offer a flock of our women to whites, in order to gain the approval of his intended Western audience.

    Again this slavish mentality is unfortunately all too common among Chinese (and other asians), to seek the approval of the foreign ‘masters’.

    And you can see how Bale has repaid this servant attitude. With the contempt that it deserves. He goes out of his way to create a big commotion to put China in a bad light.

  121. Ben
    December 25th, 2011 at 16:35 | #121

    ” our women marrying outside of their race”

    Man, you guys are creepy. Is this what a PRC education does to someone?

  122. December 26th, 2011 at 04:25 | #122

    Here is my take on this CNN / Bale thing – I don’t think it should be a big deal. Many are rightfully incensed that he choose to pick a stunt like this – playing into anti-Chinese feelings, backstabbing those of us who works for China to reach out to the West for better understanding. But really, Bale is not Chinese and has little stakes in China. Bale’s job was only to play a good role and to bring some name recognition to the film, not to play a Chinese ambassador.

    Many in the West – with an unrepentant Japan as a cornerstone ally in Asia – would probably like to choose to think the Nanjing Massacre as anti-Japanese propaganda. Bale stepping up to explain to the world that Nanjing Massacre occurred and portrayed a (very small) story of that time period should be applauded, whatever his political stance on current day Chinese gov’t.

    Now to Wayne’s comment at #120: I don’t necessarily disagree with you on Hollywood prejudice and racist Western sensibilities or even Chinese self deprecation, but a movie is only a movie, it’s not meant to cure all of the world’s ills. For a film like this to be made and then to be watched and appreciated across the world (and most especially in the West), it has to cater to prevailing norms (however racist and unfair and unpalatable they may be).

    As to the film’s portraying white people as saviors of Chinese citizens – I have no problem with that. Sure, the West has wronged China in so many ways, but where white people do do good for Chinese people, I have no problem with recognizing them where credit is due…

    I hope the film does not become politicized too much more than it already has been. This is a human story. Yes, China would like to use that story to expand its legitimacy, building on the narrative that a weak China is a China where Chinese human rights are violated mass scale in the worst possible way. The West would like to minimize that. China as a modern state after all is arguably built in large part as a reactive response to foreign invasion and colonization. Many would like to undermine that narrative as much as possible – especially in light of a re-surging China. This is all understandable: I just hope those who do so don’t discredit too much the human suffering that truly did result in China as a result of foreign invasion and colonization…

  123. Wayne
    December 26th, 2011 at 04:49 | #123

    For a film like this to be made and then to be watched and appreciated across the world

    You mean the ‘white’ world. I’m sure Zhang Yimou couldn’t care less how the file is perceived by Kenyans, or Iranians, or Burmese, or Guatemalans.

    You see. Chinese like Zhang Yimou feels he needs validation from a white Western audience. He feels if he can get the approbation of white people, in fact only when he gets the approbation of white people, he is validated as a movie maker.

    When in fact why should China care less whether or not white folk like or appreciate our culture or civilization. The only important thing is they don’t invade us, they don’t meddle in our internal affairs….basically leave us alone in the way we have always left them alone.

    Of course we trade with each other. But trade will occur regardless of whether or not they watch our movies.

    As for your comment ‘a movie is only a movie’, I beg to differ. The mass media, Hollywood basically defines societal norms, what is acceptable and what is not acceptable. For a vast proportion of the population of any country, movies portray ‘reality’. The chinese population sees Gong Li and Zhang Ziyi getting screwed by a white, then they watch movies where the love interest of China’s top actresses is a white man, how long do you think it is before it is almost considered abnormal to even speak out against these types of relationships?

    “Sure, the West has wronged China in so many ways, but where white people do do good for Chinese people, I have no problem with recognizing them”

    But of course the question is balance. White people themselves make tons of films portraying themselves as the hero, helping out non-whites. We don’t need Chinese to help them out as well.

    If we have 10 movies like Ip Man 2 for every one movie like Flowers of War then that would be OK in my book. But the fact is we don’t. We need balance.

    One could even argue that there is nothing wrong with any individual movie portraying our women in a relationship with a white man. But when there are hundreds of movies concerning interracial relationships, and practically ALL of them are white man with non-white woman, then something is seriously wrong.

    Zhang Yimou is a running dog. I’ve seen him interviewed. He has this sickening sense of self importance, and when he is with Christian Bale together he has the look of a sycophantic running dog.

    No real man of any race can ever be happy with his own woman running off with the menfolk of another race. Especially the vast hemorrhaging of our womenfolk to the whites in East Asia.

    It is a national disgrace how our woman fall at the feet of whites. And it is a national disgrace how most Chinese men seem not to care less about it. What type of national dignity can there be if our woman prefer a white man over a chinese man simply because the white man is white? And we should bear in mind, that in general the only kind of white man asian women get are the bottom of the barrel losers who white woman shun. That makes it even worse.

    What more important a resource is there apart from land, that a nation has? Of course its womenfolk. And if we continue to turn a blind eye, to be nonchalant about this plunder, then we are not real men.

  124. Wayne
    December 26th, 2011 at 05:10 | #124

    By the way I’m surprised that no one has mentioned the case of Danny Chen and Harry Lew of the US army, who killed themselves after being subjected to intolerable racial bullying at the hands of their white ‘comrades’ (and yes those doing the hazing were whites).

    http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-soldier-death-20111222,0,3384982.story

    It is a dramatic confirmation of the racist contempt that whites harbour towards the yellow race.

    So we repay this contempt with a ‘nationalistic’ blockbuster movie inviting them to come and gorge themselves on our women.

    Not that I really give a damn about the fate of Privates Chen and Lew, of course. They signed up in a white mans army to fight in a white man’s war to kill non-white people who had never ever done them any harm. And if they had been ordered to shoot chinese, I’m sure both of them would not have hesitated to. Good riddance to both of them.

  125. Wayne
    December 26th, 2011 at 05:18 | #125

    Again Allen.

    Answer this.

    Why should we care whether or not our stuff is appreciated by white folk, any more than it is appreciated by a Berber goat herder, an Innuit fisherman, or a Masai lion hunter?

  126. Wayne
    December 26th, 2011 at 05:48 | #126

    张艺谋就是个崇洋媚外的垃圾。正视历史就要揭自己的伤疤去取悦外国人吗? 还要用中国女性的屈辱去取悦?回顾他的片子,能得奖的哪个不是靠买肉的?说他垃圾都是侮辱垃圾

  127. December 26th, 2011 at 08:25 | #127

    事实摆在眼前嘛,欧美的综合实力的确比中国强。张艺谋能扬名国外靠的就是这些。
    现在个人能做的就是做好本分,气是没有用的,找个洋人女友,从个人做起吧。

  128. jxie
    December 26th, 2011 at 10:10 | #128

    Ray, like your comment.

    Wayne, allow me to add a couple of points. I think you are in a confused state of mind.

    * It’s about your market. The box office in 2010 was, $10.6 billion in the US, $1.5 billion in China. The US was by far the largest market in the world, and China was #5. (In 2011 China is expected to overtake UK/Ireland, and France) Moreover, China’s post-movie sales (DVD, Bluray, TV) are minuscule. 1. Movie consumption is secondary to Chinese at this stage of development, compared to say car buying. 2. Piracy doesn’t help. If you make a movie in Hollywood, the taste of Americans trumps the taste of Chinese any time. If the Chinese movie market size is close to that of the US, and Chinese like to see more AMWF than WMAF, trust me Hollywood will give you more AMWF.

    * Take a trip to countries such as Ireland and Brazil, there are more AMWF couples than WMAF ones there. Heck even in Canada it seems to be fairly close between the 2 types. At a personal level, among quite some of the WMAF relationships I know, the men are total losers — could be the green card factor there. Heck, you Wayne could be the best kept secret. You ought to put yourself out there.

    * The women are not yours or mine. They are free human beings.

  129. scl
    December 26th, 2011 at 13:27 | #129

    The discrepancy of interracial marriage rate between AF and AM is probably due to socioeconomic status and language barrier (I suspect WM cares less about verbal communication skills than WF) mainly. Among the second generation Chinese Americans, the rates of interracial marriage are about the same for female and male, if Hispanic whites are included. You are always fooled by the media, let alone Hollywood, if you do not know better.

  130. December 27th, 2011 at 07:59 | #130

    @Wayne #122 @Wayne #124

    For a film like this to be made and then to be watched and appreciated across the world

    You mean the ‘white’ world. I’m sure Zhang Yimou couldn’t care less how the file is perceived by Kenyans, or Iranians, or Burmese, or Guatemalans.

    As for your comment ‘a movie is only a movie’, I beg to differ. The mass media, Hollywood basically defines societal norms, what is acceptable and what is not acceptable.

    Why do we care what people in the West think? Because the West still possess the most advanced technology, has at its disposal by far the most military capabilities, and the biggest economies. If the West wants to wreck havoc on the rest of the world – China included – they can. That’s why we care about popular opinion in the West. However messed up popular opinion is in the West, we must still pay attention and try our best to put some rationality into it. It is why this blog exists. Otherwise, we should just all go blogging in Chinese – who gives a damn about English speaking audience?

    About the social issues you draw, it is not just a Chinese issue. I had a really good friend in law school from Brasil, and he told me that in Latin America, all the glamorous movie stars, soap stars, models, etc. are all white (all have fair skins) even though demographics-wise, only some 10-15% of the people in Latin America are pure white, with most mixed and a small percentage pure natives. For the natives and many non-pure whites, this daily bombardment of bias is truly suffocating. As bad as it is, the situation is even worse in real life. It is still the European descendants that controlled politics and economy in most of Latin America.

    We can vent all we want, but the social / prejudice / normative bias issues is only part of the bigger issue of broader global injustice that started with the rise of the West (colonization, etc.). The ticket to change is to improve the lot of the non-whites – not just to demand a change in attitude. That’s why I think the rise of China to a pre-eminent power is so important. If a non-white civilization can replace Western civilization as the epitome of human civilization, the liberating effect across the world that has been subdued and raped for the last 400-500 years will truly be empowering.

    Now to your comments about Chinese women. While I get your angle, I also want to push back a little. The basis of your complaint appears to be that Chinese women marrying whites is somehow akin to Chinese women being raped, being sold into slavery – taken as war prize or sorts. After all, one mark of a conquered people is killing of the males and marrying of the females…

    But is this conclusion more metaphor than reality? My personal experience (in the U.S.) is that it’s probably more metaphor. Many Chinese women do marry white males in the U.S. because it’s considered “marrying up.” But even these women, I do not think they marry only to play a subservient role. In fact, I’d say of the Chinese women married to white husbands, in many ways they take charge more of the family than white women. What’s wrong with Chinese women choosing to “marry up” this way? Whites still do in general make more money and (due to prejudice in my opinion) achieve greater success here in the West. Indian women and Muslim women probably would do the same, but for some reasons, Western guys prefer Chinese women more than other women. I say more power to these Chinese women.

    Now for the longer term, I definitely hope to see more balance in Chinese males in interracial marriages. There obviously is still social bias against Chinese – especially Chinese males. Your comments about movies setting social norm is valid, but this is a social issue that must be changed over time. I just don’t think that Zhang Yimou must be a trail blazer in this. Conforming to norm to get the stories of Nanjing atrocities out is not a “sell out” in my opinion.

  131. December 27th, 2011 at 08:42 | #131

    Wayne, after reading several of your posts, you appear to be an extremist. There always are two sides of the story. You may learn more if you try to understand what others are saying. Chinese have a bad habit to debase the famous folks, and I hope this is not your agenda. Have a nice holiday!

  132. December 27th, 2011 at 21:36 | #132

    One more thought: isn’t it amazing that we hear so much about the Nazi regime as the ultimate evil yet silence when it comes to Japan – such that when we talk about the evils the Nazis did, people give their utmost reverence to the victims, yet when it comes to the evils the Japanese did, people question whether it is “propaganda”? (e.g. “director Zhang Yimou’s new epic about the 1937 Nanking massacre “The Flowers of War” is, well, frankly, propagandistic and, yes, anti-Japanese. … ‘He went from being this renegade making films that were banned and an eyesore for the Chinese government to kind of being the pet of the government…'”)

    While the article as well as many comments in the link above are despicable, this link referenced in one of the comments did pique some of my interests (http://www.japanesestudies.org.uk/articles/Askew.html). Given the importance of ultimate reconciliation between China and Japan in the future, the conclusion, especially, is worth a read – if not as conclusion, then as a starting point of future discussions.

    In this paper, I have attempted to shed some light on the state of research of the Nanjing Incident today. In conclusion, I would like to make a number of points about researching Nanjing.

    First, to put it mildly, Nanjing is a controversial topic. Although our understanding of the events of Nanjing do not even begin to approach our understanding of the holocaust, it is certainly possible to demonise anyone who budges from the orthodox position as being a denier on par with a David Irving. The problem is that the orthodox position is completely different in China and Japan, and within Japan itself there are three distinct orthodoxies. Although there is real debate in Japan, no one there now accepts the figure of 300,000 victims as plausible, while in China the figure is set in concrete (in both senses of the word) at the entrance of the Memorial for the Compatriot [Chinese] Victims of the Japanese Massacre in Nanjing. Unless the debate is to continue to run on parallel lines, never to come together to produce a deeper, more complete and transnational understanding of this historical event, this is not a situation to be welcomed. How to overcome it, on the other hand, poses a dilemma. As long as much of the debate is dominated by ideologues, the sensible option for historians may well be to keep their heads low and research other topics. That, however, cannot be a desirable outcome. Historians surely have an obligation to combat the trend to use Nanjing as a weapon in contemporary ideological and international contests.

    Secondly, too many Japanese researchers in particular are either completely ignorant of, or do not care about, the fact that Nanjing for better or for worse has become a central plank in the construction of the modern self-identity of the Chinese. To discuss Nanjing is to threaten this self-identity. Once aware of this fact, all who participate in the debate need to show some sensitivity to it. I am not arguing that the Chinese orthodoxy needs to be accepted without question because the feelings of so many will be hurt if it is questioned. Indeed, I strongly believe that human beings have to come to terms with the “real” past and accept it, and that it is more dangerous (at least in the long term) to found national identity on a lie than to discover the truth and live with it. However, some effort does need to be made (on both extremes of the debate) to avoid the use of inflammatory language, and to show a much greater awareness of and sensitivity to the moral implications of historical inquiry.

    Thirdly, as historians, it is our obligation to examine calmly the primary materials and reconstruct the history of Nanjing on the basis of what those materials say. Some clearly want to absolve the Japanese of all blame, while others want to depict the Japanese as a uniquely brutal and ruthless race. Neither position should form the starting point of any discussion of the events in Nanjing – although, of course, either might be the conclusion of any such examination. The publication of as many primary materials as possible is clearly a basic condition for this approach, so we need to encourage the discovery and publication of as much as possible.

    Finally, a dialogue between historians working on the Nanjing Incident needs to be promoted. Again, I have great hopes for the forum provided by the English language, where researchers from both Japan and China can debate with researchers from third-party countries such as the USA, Canada and Australia. The problem with the Chinese and Japanese language discourses is that they are both so insular and the political environments are so charged. It is in the market of ideas and through constant debate (and perhaps the mediation provided by “neutral”, third-party historians), that the truth will be approached.

    Of course, I doubt the debate can be moderated by “neutral” Westerners (umm, umm). It will have to come between China and Japan themselves…

    And the modern identity of Chineseness is not at danger here, as the author may have suggested in the above quote. Even if the figure 300,000 is ultimately lowered, there is no question atrocities were committed. Does it matter if 6 million Jews died, or 5 or 4, or 8 million? There is no “lie” at the bottom of Chinese identity even in the “best” of scenario for Japan.

  133. zack
    December 27th, 2011 at 22:47 | #133

    absolutely disgusting; to hear ppl/journalists deny the atrocities of Japanese Imperial Soldiers/officers is absolutely disgusting and it does make me wonder how well these very same journalists would fare if they were to openly opine such a thing with respect to the Holocaust victims. In some countries even questioning the numbers of victims (as these western journalists are questioning the numbers of nanjing rape victims!!) is an offence punishable with lengthy prison terms.

    or am i missing something here; are these western journalists really saying ‘the life of a chinese person is worth less than a european jew'; is that really the message being conveyed here, because it certainly seems like it.

  134. December 28th, 2011 at 09:06 | #134

    @Allen
    @zack
    Basically, the western media and their government want to instil the thought that the CCP is as evil as the Nazi. And since there is conflict between China and Japan today, anything that can paint the Japanese as aggressor is frowned upon, questioned and challenged.

    That’s why we see some deranged comment here claiming that the Nazi is all evil while somehow the Imperial Japanese government is not. I personally frowned upon labelling the Nazi or Imperial Japan as all evil. Basically, when you have such a conclusion, you will end up with argument in this line “The only good Nazi is a dead Nazi”, “The only good commie is a dead commie” etc.

    However, I believe that if we concentrate too much on Japanese aggression alone we will not be able to come to an agreement. What Imperial Japan did was simply copying western colonialism in Asia (and through much of the world in the past 500 yrs). This fact must be raised and condemned as well. Like I have said many times, the Japanese want their modernization and contribution recognized too. So far they feel that they have only been condemned for their wrongs but not patted on the back for starting a chain reaction that ended European colonialism not just in Asia but Africa as well.

  135. zack
    December 28th, 2011 at 11:52 | #135

    @Ray
    i honestly think the West would rather seek a war than live in a world where they feel they must defer to China. i think it’s an unconscious racist programming, a relic from the colonial days ingrained in the segment of western society who remain deeply deeply racist.

    so it makes sense to attempt to dehumanise a ppl you wish your citizens to fight a war against; do i think it’ll come to war? i hope not, but i wouldn’t put it past leaders in the West who’ve already demonstrated a willlingness to start wars and invade other countries to achieve their aims of hegemony

  136. Wayne
    December 28th, 2011 at 19:15 | #136

    “What Imperial Japan did was simply copying western colonialism in Asia”

    Yes you are right. We must remember this fact.

    Also we should remember that the aversion the West has to China is not so much because of China’s political system, but because China is a non-white power, an Asian power which is rising, and which is challenging Western hegemony (although obviously the fact that we have the political system we currently do have makes us far more of a challenge to the West than the chaotic ‘democracies’ of the sub-continent)

    Playing anti-imperialist movies showing Japanese atrocities is right and proper and has a good effect – when played to a Chinese or East Asian audience.

    But doing the same to a Western audience will NOT engender broad feelings of sympathy and understanding for China. In fact quite the opposite. All it will confirm for a Western audience is that Asians are sadistic animals (what they already think), they will laugh at these Asians killing one another, and this will only help along more ‘yellow peril’ politics (which are always an undercurrent in Western discourse on China).

    Equally as poisonous, by putting a white man in the picture, confirms for white people that only Anglo Saxon ‘decency’ can save the world from harming one another, and this mentality is used to justify Western intervention all over the planet (of course the operative word is ‘justify’ to their public —the real intention of course is to plunder the resources of non-white nations). Whites already thing they are the most ‘noble minded’, ‘altruistic’ people in the world. Every single movie they make about themselves says so. Every single newspaper article they write implies as much. Now it seems (to them) that the Chinese also agree. How unfortunate.

    The average Westerner when seeing a Chinese, thinks just ‘Asian’, not China or Japan. He may use the word ‘chink’ to insult Chinese or Japanese alike. Japanese misdeeds are attributed to the Chinese and vice versa.

    Remember the Vincent Chin case? Two white autoworkers perceived their unemployment was the fault of Japanese auto-manufacturers. So they went and bashed a Chinese man to death for it. And got two or three months in prison – suspended.

    Demonizing the Japanese in front of a Western audience, is not just demonizing the Japanese. It is demonizing East Asians. And will increase racist feelings towards Chinese people as well.

    And it is this racist undercurrent which ultimately informs the West in its political and diplomatic and economic relationships with China.

  137. Wayne
    December 28th, 2011 at 19:45 | #137

    I personally frowned upon labelling the Nazi or Imperial Japan as all evil. Basically, when you have such a conclusion, you will end up with argument in this line “The only good Nazi is a dead Nazi”, “The only good commie is a dead commie” etc.

    This point I disagree. In fact the only good Nazi is a dead Nazi (at least one who really does subscribe to Nazi ideology – not just some minor party functionary). That is because if you subscribe to Nazi ideology, you must support the idea of killing ‘inferior’ races, of killing ‘Jews’, of invading and exterminating the peoples of other lands. That is their ideology. Written down clearly. That is what they believe. So yes. A person subscribing to Nazi beliefs is a danger to the world (in fact sub-consciously most Western whites do have these beliefs – but there are some with enough good conscience to recognise these beliefs as wrong and not act upon them – at least most of the time).

    Communism is entirely different. Communist ideology, no matter how it has been implemented from time to time, is an ideology of emancipation – for all people. In fact while the political antecedents of todays ruling elite in the West were plundering China, invading China, it was only a few just minded men like Lenin who opposed this. Indeed this is why Sun Yatsen had great sympathy for the young Soviet Union.

    Also – most of the world was liberated from colonialism by men who had Marxism Leninism as their guiding ideology. From China, to Vietnam, to Mozambique, to South Africa, to Cuba, those who fought the Western imperialists were either Marxist Leninists themselves, or supported by China or the Soviet Union.

    So there is no way that one can compare Naziism on the one hand, evil at its core, to the communist ideal.

    So yes. I think it is perfectly apt to describe Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan as evil (I would almost do the same for the US – but in this case perhaps there are some mitigating factors).

    What is wrong of course is to describe the German people and the Japanese people as evil. They are not evil. But the polities supported by a significant number of them during WWII and earlier were evil – absolutely so.

    The Chinese people of course recognised this. Even just after WWII when many Japanese war orphans were left behind in NE China by the vacating Japanese forces, in spite of the atrocities committed by the parents of these same children, the Chinese people adopted these orphans as their own and raised them as their own children. That is something we Chinese should be proud of.

  138. December 28th, 2011 at 19:50 | #138

    @zack
    Frankly, I have to agree with you to a certain extend. However, the western countries actually have realist in their government. The British under Thatcher would love to keep HK but nobody in the British MOD think it is possible to hold it militarily, the PRC is simply not going to be like the Argentine in the South Atlantic War so they basically have to negotiate. The reality is, the language they understand is strength. So as long as China keep up the vigilante and work hard there is nothing they can do to undermine China’s development.

  139. December 28th, 2011 at 19:52 | #139

    @Wayne
    Exactly, that’s why I think it is counterproductive to focus narrowly on the Japanese atrocities alone. The origin of WWI and WWII must be explain to a wider audience. Those wars are not a simplistic struggle between the good and evil, they are great imperialist war part I and II.

    But alas, the market economy played a major role in what kind of movie can be made and shown to the largest number of audience (nobody can touch Hollywood in this aspect). That’s why East Asia have to come together first before the current world order can be changed. If the Confucian region that used chopsticks and Han character cannot see eye to eye and continued to be manipulated by outside powers, I don’t see how the world can be changed.

  140. December 28th, 2011 at 20:20 | #140

    @Wayne
    I see your point. However, Nazi Germany while promoting lots of hatred actually have exception.
    http://www.kansaspress.ku.edu/righit.html
    On top of that, Nazi Germany has no problem dealing with the ROC. Look at this picture http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chiang_Wei-kuo
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sino-German_cooperation

    The Nazi are playing the race purity card like pretty much all colonial powers, the Dutch and Belgian are obviously pretty bad offender as well but their crimes are never publicized.

    However, if you paint the Nazi as pure evil what about the US and British government? These two society also openly disallowed interracial marriage. Segregation and Jim Crow law is the norm with the former. The US government pretty much put the native into concentration camp and let them died of from purposeful neglect.

    And when you have argument that “The only good Nazi is a dead Nazi” you run dangerously close to allowing “The only good CCP member is a dead member”.

    Good point you raise on Japanese orphans in China. There are several hundred thousands of Japanese war orphans in Japan too but they all end up in the street and most died of malnutrition. Yes, the Chinese should be proud of the PRC, in fact the CCP pulled all orphans, homeless and prostitutes off the street and took care of them despite the fiscal poverty.

    Anyway, I want to point out that two previous Japanese prime ministers who are against aggression against China and Korea got assassinated. The Japanese are not born monsters either. At that time colonization is the only way they know to survive the cultural onslaught from the west. They chose the western way of colonization/invasion rather than helping the Korean and Chinese.

    That’s why I see the only way out is through cooperation between the East Asian. A united E.Asia will make the white supremist wet his pants. They don’t want to see a united E.asia and this is what China must work towards.

  141. December 28th, 2011 at 20:30 | #141

    @Wayne and Ray #133 – #139 – kudos to both for some excellent exchange in the comments here…

    The evil acts of war should be recognized as evil (I wouldn’t go as far as all wars are evil, but I may personally be inclined to do so). But the context in which war is fought should not be painted black and white.

    The war in China was perhaps unique in history in the sense that you have a hapless but strong willed people fighting against a modern, industrial war machine. That coupled with methods of modern warfare (civilization terror, propaganda, etc.), heavy human casualty is perhaps to be expected.

  142. December 28th, 2011 at 22:18 | #142

    About Zhang’s pushing social boundaries. I read in many places that Zhang Yimou had to tread gently in making the Flowers of War because Japanese atrocities play a sensitive part of the modern Chinese identity. Well, I suppose he also has to thread softly in terms of racial sensitivities here in the West, too.

  143. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 06:38 | #143

    Well, I suppose he also has to thread softly in terms of racial sensitivities here in the West, too.

    Zhang could well be forgiven for being mostly unaware of these sorts of racial dynamics, never having lived in the West for any extended period himself. But that does not excuse the movie. And he is still a running dog. You don’t need to live in the West to understand that if you make a so called ‘nationalistic’ movie, the protagonist should be a member of the group of the nation concerned. Like too many Chinese,Zhang Yimou bounded up to the white man like an eager dog, willing to offer the keys of the Orient to a particularly arrogant and despicable member of the white species – Mr Bale. There are many many Chinese who have never even got on an airplane, let alone lived in the West, who fortunately can see through this.

    If I saw Zhang Yimou in the street I would be tempted to kick his teeth in.

  144. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 06:55 | #144

    @Wayne

    You may express your personal opinions against public figures as you choose, but I would warn you against advocating violence in HH.

    Personally, I think Zhang does cater his art to the Westerners, but his underlying message is consistent with the Chinese view of history. And in that respect, I don’t care if he sells cheap trinkets to Westerners, if the trinkets generate good PR for China in the West, I have no problem with Zhang.

    And Zhang can hire whatever 2-bit Western Actor/Actress he wishes to get his trinket messages across. I don’t care.

    In a time of China’s rapid changes, I’m not going to examine the “Chinese-ness” of every thing that’s in China.

    How “Chinese” was the 2008 Olympics, which Zhang also choreographed?

    How “Chinese” are the 100’s of 1000’s of Chinese students who lived and worked in the West?

    We are all learning from outside of China, and taking things from outside of China to mix into China. Zhang can do the same, even for a “Nationalist” movie.

    If you don’t like Zhang’s choice, that’s your personal opinion. But China is a big place. Being Chinese also means you should be more tolerant of Chinese diversity.

  145. pug_ster
    December 29th, 2011 at 07:09 | #145

    @Wayne

    In your twisted logic, if I watched Saving Private Ryan, I would think Steven Spielberg hates Germany. Gees, it is ONLY a movie and Zhang is the movie director. This movie is based on a true story and does not reflect on Zhang’s opinions.

  146. wwww1234
    December 29th, 2011 at 07:18 | #146

    @pug_ster
    “true story”?

    I thought it was based on a novel written by a taiwan Chinese?

  147. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 07:27 | #147

    “Segregation and Jim Crow law is the norm with the former. The US government pretty much put the native into concentration camp and let them died of from purposeful neglect.”

    Ray. You have made an excellent point. There is a strong case to be argued that Naziism was simply a highly politcised form of racism which was an inherent part of Western civilisation anyway, its only unique point was it was used against other European peoples.

    Indeed once could be justified in saying that really Naziism was no worse than most other forms of Western colonialism, the only difference was it was practiced on the European continent (and it least the Nazis, were brave enough to take on three! world powers at once, and fight man to man against modern armies. Unlike the British colonialists who just mowed down technologically backward peoples with gattling guns, or modern day US and British imperialists who massacre millions of innocent civilians with bombs and missiles).

    We should note that Nazi racial supremacism was not invented by Hitler, Goebels, Rosenberg etc. They refined existing theories which were common in Europe and the US at the time, and gave them a bit more structure and gave emphasis to German nationalism to create their own special version of racial supremacism.

    But the ideas of the Nazis, of white supremacy were actually part of mainstream thought at the time. Theodore Roosevelt was an out and out white supremacist, and even a so-called ‘liberal’ like Woodrow Wilson was an arch-segragationist (who incidentally strongly opposed, along with the Australians, the insertion of a ‘racial equality’ clause in the Treaty of Versaille, proposed by the Japanese). The philosophers and ‘scientists’ the German Nazis drew the most inspiration from in terms of their racial views, were those of Gobineau (a Frenchman), and especially an Englishman by the name of Houston Stewart Chamberlain.

    In the Unites States Madison Grant had racial views in many ways similar to the Nazis. His views were hugely influential in the US, leading to immigration restrictions in the 1920s and were highly praised by Hitler himself. What’s more important to note is that Madison Grant was not considered some sort of nutcase. He was completely mainstream, so much so that the character Tom Buchanan in the Great Gatsby casually mentions he was reading Grant “. “Everybody ought to read it…The idea is if we don’t look out the white race will be — will be utterly submerged [by the coloured races]. It’s all scientific stuff; it’s been proved.”

    These sorts of ‘scientific racialist’ views had real consequences in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Here are just several examples:

    The first genocide of the 20th Century was the genocide of the Hereros by the Germans (under the father of Herman Goering).
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Herero_and_Namaqua_Genocide

    There was the genocide of course of the Australian aborigines, especially the Tasmanian aborigines:
    http://sites.google.com/site/aboriginalgenocide/chalk-frank-jonassohn-kurt

    The Belgian genocide of 10 to 15 million Congolese:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/3516965.stm

    The atrocities of US troops in the US-Phillipines war (perhaps almost 10% of the population killed):
    http://www.timawa.net/forum/index.php?topic=2691.0

    And of course there is the genocide of the Native Americans, Western imperialism in India and China, the Vietnam war etc et

    If one examines European colonial rule in most African and Asian countries, on both a quantitative and qualititative basis, we can confidently say that it was at least as bad, if not worse than the Nazi occupation of Yugoslavia, Poland, and parts of the Soviet Union (the three places where they behaved the worst). And it was similarly backed up by a virulent ideology of racial supremacism.

    So yes, I largely agree with Ray. A good case can be made for equating European colonialism with German National Socialism because of the following two points of similarity:

    (1) the scale of atrocities was the same, in some cases even exceeding the Nazis, if one takes the percentage of population killed of some colonies and

    (2) the killings were justified and in many cases impelled by a vile racist ideology (and in fact the Nazis learned their racism from the European imperialist powers, combining it with the anti-semitism of the Christian religion and German nationalism).

    So why are the German Nazis so particularly villified, and not say the Germans who killed the Hereros, or the Belgians who killed the Congolese? Simply because the German Nazis invaded mainly European countries, and killed mainly Europeans. That is the only difference.

  148. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 07:33 | #148

    pug_ster:

    You completely miss the point. There are many many themes a movie director can choose to use. The fact that the story may or may not be true is beside the point.

    Zhang deliberately chooses the tired old cliched and racist theme of white man rescuing chinese women to please his intended white audience. Thus, for profit, he sells out to the white supremacist Hollywood crowd.

    Some have said that in mitigation, that the movie will make the Western audience sympathise more with the Chinese – to understand China more. But this will not be the case, as I have argued above, the movie is likely to increase anti-Asian, even anti-Chinese feeling in the West, and will confirm the prejudices of the white audience against all East Asians. And these prejudices in the end do inform the West’s attitude towards us, both on the ground, and at the inter-governmental level.

    As for saying ‘it is only a movie’….get real! Movies are propaganda, no matter who makes them. To many people what is in the movies is uncritically accepted as reality. If something is acceptable in the movies, it quickly becomes acceptable in society. It is the mass media and Hollywood which is directly responsible for many of the cultural shifts within Western society itself over the past several decades, some of these good, some not so good.

  149. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 08:06 | #149

    How “Chinese” was the 2008 Olympics, which Zhang also choreographed?

    How “Chinese” are the 100′s of 1000′s of Chinese students who lived and worked in the West?

    We are all learning from outside of China, and taking things from outside of China to mix into China. Zhang can do the same, even for a “Nationalist” movie.

    None of the things you mentioned above, involve China giving away anything to the West for nothing in return.

    Fair exchange is good. The students studying in the West learn advanced science and engineering. The Western countries concerned benefit from the huge student fees these students pay.

    The 2008 Olympics is of course influenced by various cultural elements, some Western (as is a lot of modern Chinese music). But unless there were any copyright breaches, which there were not, what is the problem?

    One can listen and enjoy the 9th symphony for the price of an admission ticket, or ipod, just as a Westerner can enjoy Chinese food for a small price. In both cases there is no cultural surrendering either way, no compromising of the interests of the West to the East or the East to the West. All fine in my book.

    But when it comes to interracial relationships, the exchange is anything but fair. It is the same as someone taking $10 from you and giving you back 50 cents. Is that fair?

    White men regularly boast of having dated and had sex with dozens of Chinese women in China, and other parts of East Asia. The most useless, butt-ugly white man can often score a Chinese woman easier than a reasonable Chinese man.

    But does a newly arrived Chinese man in the West get swarmed over by white women wanting to have sex with him? Of course not.

    So the exchange is far from fair.

    Whats more, marriageable women are becoming more and more rare in China, because of the gender imbalance. We can ill-afford to be so generous in handing our women away, encouraging our women to marry whites, and encouraging whites to marry our women.

    Zhang Yimou’s attitude is unfortunately typical of too many Chinese. If the white man approves of Chinese culture, or says our women are beautiful, our food is good, we are happy. The white man is used to validate ourselves, as a yardstick.

    That is completely and utterly fucked up. We should learn from the Mulims, and not give a flying fuck what white people think. If would much prefer they fear and hate us than play the part of a friendly dog. But of course mutual respect and friendship is the ideal. But there can NEVER be amity between the races if they take10 of ours for one of theirs. Not until hell freezes over.

  150. dan
    December 29th, 2011 at 08:31 | #150

    …handing our Women away…? –

    Don’t you think that has to come from the Chinese women themselves? But if marrying is an act of upward mobility, then Chinese just need to be ready for a new breed of (Han, Man, Mongol, Hui, Zhang, Miao, etc.) Chinese. May be one day in that distance future, the Asiatic-H, M, M, H, Z, have to compete for the newly minted Caucasoid-H-M-M-H-Z to be the new masters of China…ha…what a day that will be. I can’t wait to see blogs sprout up from one camp deriding the others for the true ‘Chinese’ title, or the true ‘Descendants of the Dragon’. Ouch.

  151. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 08:45 | #151

    Don’t you think that has to come from the Chinese women themselves?

    Only if you are some brainwashed, post-modern, metrosexual.

    Right throughout history wars have been fought over two things. Land and women.

    Women will go to whoever is the strongest. The strongest does not always have to be the one with the most money. If our culture is strong, the men are staunch and uncompromising, the women will stay. Just look at the Muslims. Do their women behave like sluts in front of white men, like so many of our women do? Of course not. The white man who touches a Muslim woman will find his head separated from his body very quickly, and the woman likely the same. Good for the Muslims.

    As for the various Chinese nationalities, they by and large are all East Mongoloid. So mixing in this respect is fine.

    And leaving aside the genetics of it, look at the numbers game: Do you think we should be encouraging our women to have sex with whites, when we get only 1 in exchange for about 20? Anyone who would agree to such a deal is a sell-out, a running dog, a hanjian.

  152. raffiaflower
    December 29th, 2011 at 10:14 | #152

    `The average Westerner when seeing a Chinese, thinks just ‘Asian’, not China or Japan. ”

    I think those words from Rambo Wayne sort of explains Allen’s lament about Chinese victims in WW2 not held @ par with European/Jewish body count. In the average Westerner’s mind, WW2 is embedded largely as a fratricidal war to save Western civilization and values. Its enemies were ideological (Nazism/fascism) and cultural ( an upstart `honorary’ white eventually nuked into submission and held in Stockholm Syndrome to its captors ever since.)
    The Japanese invasion of China was regarded mainly as a regional conflict; the war went `worldwide’ only after Japan had the temerity to hit out @ the white man @ Pearl Harbour and their empires in Southeast Asia.
    So who cares for Chinese lives? Especially now since Japan has been rehabilitated as a full
    Western ally (gee, even the murderous Hirohito is cuddly and wears a Mickey watch!!), and the Nanjing Massacre has propaganda value – but only for the commies, not the West.
    No match there, then, for that damn Holocaust, apotheosized as the triumph of the progressive West over its own dark side – and useful for Israeli apologists (such as that you-know-who) to silence any criticism against the genocide of Palestinians by Jews.

    Lest we forget: It was China’s resistance that pinned down Imperial Japan’s forces and helped to keep them off Russia’s eastern flank and British India. Without the German failure on the Russian front, it’s arguable, the British might not have held against Hitler’s onslaught.
    How could the West today admit though, that the `peace’ and `democracy’ they so proudly claim as their post-war enlightenment, and exemplar for the whole world, may have been partially won by the sacrifice of millions of worthless/faceless Chinese? Zhang Yimou is really restrained with a line such as “We’ve got virgins up here!’ Only brain-dead Western hacks could claim that’s propagandistic.

    As the Chinese judge Mei @ the Tokyo tribunal noted, China fought the longest – more than 50 years – and suffered the most, from Japanese aggression, while the British turned tail @ every step of the Japanese advance.
    Yet the Anglo-American mafia attempted to relegate China to third seating position at the trials, which Mei resisted. Some of the things that Wayne says are unpleasant and extreme, but there is certainly a case for China, and Chinese people, not to abase themselves before bullies.

  153. December 29th, 2011 at 10:42 | #153

    @Wayne
    I agree in principle on your point about not wanting predatory and imperialistic men with bad intention from marrying women from a marginalized society. However, is there an easy solution to this? Basically, I don’t think anger will solve any problem.

    If you think women from Muslim background or other countries don’t “marry up”, you are not paying attention. Stories abound in the west of Muslim girls wanting to leave their religion being violently treated by their family. I don’t think this a solution.

  154. slim
    December 29th, 2011 at 14:09 | #154

    I’ve seen Wayne’s reasoning before, in the racism at the core of North Korean state ideology that has led to infanticide of Chinese-Korean mixed race babies, but also among immigrant teenagers with no prom dates and no prospects. Usually guys who use the expression “our women” end up with “no women” and we read about them in the paper when they throw acid on some poor woman’s face. I hope it doesn’t come to that for Wayne.

    My question is how would China enforce this romantic apartheid? Laws? Village busybodies? Plainclothed thugs?

  155. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:23 | #155

    Obviously Slim is a white loser who could never get a white woman.

    Your comment on acid throwing is simply racist scaremongering. I have read that it occurs in some rural parts of Pakistan. But among immigrant Chinese in the West? NEVER. A typical white racist motherfucker who makes things up to smear the Chinese people.

    And where have I ever said such a thing should be done?

    You are making it up in your own diseased mind. Perhaps that is what you want to do the white woman, your own kind, who have always rejected you.

    As for how things could be enforced, all we need is to change some of the content of the mass media, films, TV, as well as making it more well-known in East Asia the types of white men who prey on East Asian women are actually losers from their own society. Simply doing these two things would improve the situation immensely – without the need for legislative coercion.

  156. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:27 | #156

    Let’s speak plainly here:

    Is it racism if an Asian guy dates/marries a White woman? NO.

    Why is it such a big deal for some people that a Asian girl dates/marries a White guy?

    Come on, Wayne, Sexual Equality, at least in moral standards.

    Just because you might not have as good as chances as the Asian girls at interracial relationships, Don’t whine about it.

    What is with all this “our women” talk??! You don’t OWN those women!!

  157. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:28 | #157

    @Wayne

    Calm down, and watch your language!

  158. December 29th, 2011 at 16:31 | #158

    Wayne, you make many good points. But on the point of Chinese women and dating and marrying, I think you are being bogged down too much by ideology.

    Most importantly, is there any risk that the vitality of the Chinese people (however you want to define) is becoming endangered by whites dating and marrying Asians? I don’t hear stories that somehow the demographics of China is changing because white males are invading and dating and marrying Chinese women. I don’t see statistics of smarter, more beautiful women marrying whites. There are really no global problems – at least not measurable ones.

    You worry about half Chinese born of white fathers being white washed – I say, if (when) China become strong, they will easily come back to root. You need not worry. They will seek out China when China reoccupy the epitome of world civilization…

    To the extent that a population of Chinese women is / want to be involved with Caucasian males, I therefore say, let them. Even if Asian women marry whites because of messed up social norms, I just don’t see Asian women categorically getting into worse relationships per se (relative to white women), or becoming somehow sort of indentured servants (relative to white women). Even if Asian women become white washed, let them pursue their dream of being white washed. Such women probably wouldn’t have led a good life in China anyways and would probably have been more a burden than anything else to society.

    The ills you pointed out are real. But the key to solving the ills is not to treat the symptoms (messed up social norms), but to rebuild Chinese civilization. That takes true pride. Everything else is just details… Dust that will settle in the wind…

    We live in special times. However much injustice we feel there are in the world, imagine what the generation of Chinese in the early 20th century or late 19th century had to deal with. At least for us, we can witness or if we are really lucky, help to revitalize, Chinese civilization.

  159. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:31 | #159

    Why is it such a big deal for some people that a Asian girl dates/marries a White guy?

    Really, this in itself is not the problem. The problem is the interracial disparity which is huge.

    And as long as this continues, there can never be any sort of national pride or dignity.

    As long as the biggest loser of a white man can step off the boat in China, and get more womem than the average Chinese man, there is no really little national dignity we can speak of.

    The race which loses its women to the men of another race is a conquered race.

  160. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:35 | #160

    I don’t see statistics of smarter, more beautiful women marrying whites.

    Really. If you see any reasonably successful Chinese woman, of any sort of fame, a celebrity, a movie star, then there is about an 80% chance of her fucking a white man.

    Look at our celebrities, our film stars, the list with whites is staggering. And because these famous Chinese women are doing it, what social prohibitions remain to deter all Chinese women from doing it if given half the chance?

    Really we need to adopt some of the attitude of the Muslims, and not be sucked in by this post-modern, everyone does as they want shit, even if to the detriment of national pride.

    The fact is this. Women are a resource. Just like land.

    Even if Asian women marry whites because of messed up social norms, I don’t see that Asian women are somehow getting into bad relationships per se, or becoming somehow sort of indentured servants.

    Really I don’t care how these white men treat these asian sell outs. The welfare of women with white men, the welfare of their children is the last thing on my mind. They are lost causes. We need to act before they sell out.

    And do you know what? One of the reasons why Asians get so much racism from whites, are despised by whites, is precisely because they can get our women so easily. They simply laugh at us and do not consider us to be their competitors in this field. Just google it. There are tons of sites where whites simply laugh at why asian women prefer white guys over asian guys.

    I guarantee if we start to get stronger about this, firmer about this problem, then we will get a lot more respect wherever in the world we go.

  161. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:42 | #161

    @Wayne

    I acknowledge the “disparity”, but I don’t believe an “Affirmative Action” on interracial relationship is a workable solution.

    “disparity” in relationship across many factors. Across races, it’s NOT 1 race’s fault!

    “The race which loses its women to the men of another race is a conquered race.”

    Let’s not get over dramatic. China is not some tiny island like Hawaii, and there is no “rush” of White guys trying to hoard Chinese women.

    You are just being paranoid and rehashing a lot of old racial stereotypes.

  162. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:43 | #162

    @Wayne

    “The fact is this. Women are a resource. Just like land.”

    That’s just sexist over the top generalization. Men are “resources” too. If you can’t utilize your own “resources”, that’s not anyone else’s fault.

  163. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:51 | #163

    but I don’t believe an “Affirmative Action” on interracial relationship is a workable solution.

    I did not suggest ‘affirmative action’.

    In fact it is whites who get ‘affirmative action’ now because all the movies, all the mass media, including now it seems Chinese film makers go and actively promote this type of relationship to white men and Chinese women.

    I am not asking for ‘affirmative action’. I am simply asking that we stop providing ‘affirmative action’ for white men when it comes to our women.

  164. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:58 | #164

    @Wayne

    “I am not asking for ‘affirmative action’. I am simply asking that we stop providing ‘affirmative action’ for white men when it comes to our women.”

    That’s reverse affirmative action, but still affirmative action, because you are trying to limit 1 type of relationship in FAVOR of another, based upon some numerical “parity” that you want to achieve.

    Numerical “parity” on race lines, is EXACTLY “affirmative action”, actually the worst kind.

  165. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 16:59 | #165

    “I am not asking for ‘affirmative action’. I am simply asking that we stop providing ‘affirmative action’ for white men when it comes to our women.”

    Who’s “providing” affirmative action for white men??

    Geez, you make it sound like Asian girls are going for White guys because they feel sorry for them, or something.

  166. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 17:03 | #166

    Reventhorn: I am not talking of quotas here. I am talking of the way the mass media promotes the white man as some sort of heroic figure saving the asian woman.

    I am talking of the mass media, which always shows a white man with an Asian woman, but rarely a white woman with an Asian man. Either not promote these types of relationships at all (the best solution), or if they are portrayed, portray them in a balanced fashion.

  167. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 17:14 | #167

    @Wayne

    Then your problem is not with “our women” selling out, ONLY the “media” selling out, in NOT portraying enough of AM/WF relationship.

    “portraying” interracial relationship is NOT “promotion” of it, any more than portraying white people living in China as “promoting” white migration into China.

    It seems like the root of your problem is, you don’t believe you are being “promoted” enough by the media.

    Well, that you have to lobby the media companies and Zhang, and say, “why aren’t your promoting me”?

    I don’t believe you can “promote” yourself using that kind of hard way.

    Next thing I know, the ugly people will want more realistic “promotion” in movies. NOT going to happen!

    (Sorry, ugly people, that’s fact of life. and I count myself as one of the uglies, because I’m not going to be any movies in any country).

  168. December 29th, 2011 at 17:17 | #168

    Guys, I kow a lot of you don’t like me, and I certainly have major disagreements with many of you. But I also know you are sincere and expressing your true opinions. I think Raventhorn is a little too hostile and pugster a little too trollish, but I want to say I am impressed by both of them in this thread for questioning Wayne.

    Here’s what I want to say, and again, even if you don’t like me I think you know I am not a BSer:

    Wayne is a very dangerous guy and a quintessential troll. Note how he has completely taken over this thread with incredibly aggressive and even violent, radical nationalism. He comments on other sites under the name Mongol Warrior and Mark Lau. When people disagree with him — or rather, when white people disagree with him — he sends them shockingly vicious hate mail. The more you interact with him the more it encourages him, and he is simply here to make trouble. Below is a copy of an actual email he sent me after he learned I was a Jew:

    From: Mark Lau
    Fucking hook nose….fucking oven dodger – you and your fucking family –you need to be skewered on the end of someones bayonet —you fucking flea ridden greasy hook nose!!!!! Fucking juden lice…..go get a delousing!!!!!! hahahahahahahhahaa

    This is who you are dealing with. I actually have to congratulate pugster for calling him on his nonsense. But it’s not nonsense, it’s invective and it’s deranged. His pattern is always the same — he starts by being friendly and reasonable, and then he gets scarier and scarier. Please beware: you are being made fools of by a very disturbed man.

    yinyang, are you reading this? You are a smart and reasonable guy. Do you not see that there is something wrong with Wayne’s contribution to this thread? I say that, believe it or not, as a friend. Thank you for listening.

    Richard

  169. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 17:31 | #169

    Richard. I don’t know who the hell you are talking of. But it certainly is not me.

    Instead of just trying to close off the debate because it is going in a direction you do not like (you can do that on your own website), why not join the debate and tell me, and others, where we are wrong.

    Or does that scare you? Perhaps you know in advance you will lose any sort of polite and fair debate?

    Otherwise I suggest you leave this site….as a ‘friend’.

  170. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 17:36 | #170

    “portraying” interracial relationship is NOT “promotion” of it, any more than portraying white people living in China as “promoting” white migration into China

    raventhorn: Of course it is ‘promoting’ it. Just like the Western media promotes an unbalanced and unfair view of China. Some of what the Western media says about China is based on facts. But tthe problem is these ‘facts’ are not balanced out by other ‘facts’ to give a fair picture of China.

    Hollywood likes to portray white men fucking non-white women, but not non-white men fucking white women. Because they want to ‘create’ a reality that suits themselves, where the white race takes the resources of non-whites.

  171. raventhorn
    December 29th, 2011 at 17:55 | #171

    @Wayne

    No sane people would believe “movies” are “FACTS”, at least not the whole fact.

    “Because they want to ‘create’ a reality that suits themselves, where the white race takes the resources of non-whites.”

    That’s their problem. It’s called they are living in their dream world.

    And you know what, for every loser White guy who packs up to go to China and spends all his money looking for a Chinese girl, MOST are just going to end up wasting their time and money.

    I know plenty of Chinese girls who play loser expats for their money.

    If some loser expat is stupid enough to believe in the fiction, let him. I frankly don’t feel the need to burst his bubbles. (Such stupid people will convince themselves of many delusions, and won’t listen to anyone).

    (Frankly, from what I have seen of the kind of expats that have roamed through HH, I say their chances are good that they will get a “greencard” Chinese wife, who will drop them the divorce papers the minute they land in US).

    *Let’s also say that the Expats are more worried about their own reputation and image, as losers, who can’t find mates back home.

  172. zack
    December 29th, 2011 at 19:03 | #172

    @raventhorn
    the saddest thing is, a LOT of ppl acquire their information about other ppls and cultures from stereotypes which popular media and the internet have amplified a thousandfold.
    about white ppl moving to China to exploit the Chinese Dream, apprently China’s cutting down on foreign expats which i reckon would be awesome for those many, many expats who come to China, take everything their Chinese hosts offer them, and then have the fucking audacity to bitch about the country. Yeah, i know the type well; expats who stuck together in the same groups whenever they went out clubbing, not wishing to intermingle with the dirty dirty natives (despite the fact that most of them might’ve been there on assignment or learn mandarin). So with that in mind, i toast the Chinese Communist Party for having the right frame of mind and perception.

    oh and also, it aint like these expats dont get nothing; they’re covered in terms of healthcare and insurance (courtesy of the state in some cases) so it’s logical to tax the living crap out of them. China’s not America were the 1% are exempt from paying taxes; i should think that they ought to be taxed and heavily, by the gods!

  173. December 29th, 2011 at 22:18 | #173

    @richard #168

    I wouldn’t say we dislike you (how can we, we haven’t even sit down for coffee yet). I would probably say most here probably would not like what you write and how you run your blog (censoring comments with bias and opacity and the like).

    In any case, since we are on the topic of “dangerous writing” (you think Wayne’s writing is dangerous, I gather), I want to push back and ask you to consider your own writing.

    At the very worst, Wayne’s writing is deranged, and impact at most one or two people. But your writing, if taken at face value, foments general hate and misunderstanding – the kind that can lead to war, that result in hundreds of thousands if not millions of suffering humans.

    Now, I would like to say that I do not condone what you present as Wayne’s email. If he writes with that kind of language openly here, I’d edit his comments, warn him, and maybe even kick him out. But I don’t consider him “dangerous”: for example, as you can see from the comments here, rather than igniting a race-based firestorm (of the type you see on Tibetan sites), you see that most commenters disagree with him on what I consider to be a rather orthodox take on racial marriage. Some has even made fun of him in jest (see e.g. this comment).

    In any case, if you really care for hateful writing, please reconsider what you write daily. We all write with a personal motive. We all want to be heard. But beyond that, we eventually need to ask, what is the purpose of our writing. Is it to promote human understanding or hate?

    You need not answer here. It’s ultimately your own call.

    Best,

    Allen

  174. Wayne
    December 29th, 2011 at 23:13 | #174

    Yeah, i know the type well; expats who stuck together in the same groups whenever they went out clubbing, not wishing to intermingle with the dirty dirty natives

    Oh,,,,, don’t you worry they do more than their fair share of intermingling, ….but they don’t have chinese ‘buddies’ or ‘mates’. I get a laugh when I talk to expats in the office here in HK, and they always tell me how many chinese ‘friends’ they have. You know what….they are invariably all female…..hhahahahahahaha.

    Once my cousin (female, westernised) took me around to visit some expat friends of hers (american). The Americans were all whites (male –pink as lab rats), and there were a couple of other chinese females there. Man did they not really want me around, were simply not interested in making small talk, but were only after the chinese sluts (of which my cousin is unfortunately sailing close to that condemnation). hee haaing and giggling and chortling like a flock of turkeys and hens. Incidents like these made me start to see more and more clearly the way whites view Chinese, and by extension the way the West views China.

  175. raventhorn
    December 30th, 2011 at 05:21 | #175

    King Tubby :The Armenians feel particularly aggrieved here, as they have not been mentioned or wiki linked.

    I feel for the Armenians. (I have a few Armenian friends).

    I suggest you go to Turkey (a NATO member) and protest their censorship of Armenian genocide. And I’ll cheer you on when they put you in their jail and later deport you.

  176. raventhorn
    December 30th, 2011 at 05:31 | #176

    @Wayne

    See, we have nothing to worry about.

    If they want to live in their fantasies, but end up with “sluts”, that’s their problem.

    As far as I’m concern, they can waste their money and take all the STD’s they deserve.

    (On that note, I certainly have no desire to make up a “promotion” fantasy for Asian males, so that we can also enjoy a similar make believe world of movies). I’m perfectly happy with my ordinary life.

    *As I said before, Expats who fall for the Hollywood stereotypical fantasies, are really quite stupid. Smart Chinese girls with good morals would not fall for such losers.

    The ones who prostitute themselves to such loser expats? Well, I don’t consider them much of a “loss” for Chinese people.

    Besides, it’s the modern era. Such loser couples often end up in divorce court, because both parties are delusional.

    Bottomline: Good marriages/relationships cannot be based on a movie stereotype.

  177. King Tubby
    December 30th, 2011 at 15:41 | #177

    @raventhorn
    That was an ironical comment directed at the main type of argument utilised on this site, and it also anticipated your reply

  178. pug_ster
    December 30th, 2011 at 17:12 | #178

    @richard

    Richard,

    I find your comment ironic. There’s plenty “Wayne” like trolls in your website like that Loser Slim and King Tubby, yet you allow people like them to comment in your hate site.

    Second, you chose to set up a blog site, have your name public, and make your controversial statements by making your “hate CCP” fill rants, you are going to have these anonymous hate emails. If you can’t stand hate emails, maybe blogging is not the way for you.

  179. raventhorn
    December 30th, 2011 at 18:17 | #179

    @King Tubby

    I guess you don’t understand irony when re-directed back to you? Not surprised.

  180. December 30th, 2011 at 19:33 | #180

    @pug_ster and Rhan
    The previous few comments were done by a troll. I’ve deleted his comments and your response to him. Also banned his IP.

  181. raventhorn
    December 30th, 2011 at 19:54 | #181

    Hey, it’s the Holiday Trolls.

    I guess it’s snowing spam and BS.

    Have fun with the spam filter, boys!

  182. December 31st, 2011 at 17:55 | #182

    Looks like Wayne’s comments about Chinese women and White men inter-racial marriages in this and some other threads were quite a stir.

    To me, what he is observing, as others have characterized is mostly about “marrying up.”

    It’s primal too, much like a lion’s pride. When a bigger and stronger lion comes along, he gets all the girl lions.

    If we fast-forward to some number of generations and China becomes the new super power, who is it to say that White women won’t flock to Chinese men? Obviously I am talking more about economic power, because during the height of Soviet Union, I don’t recall too many women hunting for Soviet men. Replace China with any other nation, that’d be true.

    The “affirmative action” that Wayne speaks of that White men enjoy is very true. This is also because they have the wallets to allow so many movies to cater to their tastes (primal ones I might add). The equalizer is in the economics. When the Chinese men have big wallets, that will level the playing field.

    BUT, this view of races fighting for each others women is a bit wrong-headed in my opinion. I hope we have become better than the lions.

    The Nazis tried to create a pure Aryan race. So the White supremacists would probably criticize these men marrying non-White women as sell-outs.

    In my view, if we look at millenniums ahead, I would hope that all humans mingle. That is the true testament to tolerance and acceptance.

  183. January 1st, 2012 at 14:04 | #183

    I’m also deeply concerned with the level at which Zhang’s films have sunk. He was once perhaps the greatest director in the world and now all he makes it garbage for a pop (western?) audience. This started with his kung fu movies which were still moderately good but not great. He has a great talent for story telling but what is up with him in the last 10 years?

    Anyway, China has just as talented 6th generation directors that are not willing to sell out.

    I also share many of the concerns of Wayne. There is a evil effort to try and denigrate AMs especially in Hollypeckerwood. This goes far beyond the general denigration of Asians in that set of institutions that has been going on for 100 years. It is one of the most virulent and despicable attempts to dehumanize and vitiate a population in the history of Hollywood which says a lot since Hollypeckerwood is one of the most racist institutions in the history of mankind. I don’t think people in general both in the west and in China realize how effective Hollypeckerwood propaganda is in inculcating people’s beliefs and values.

  184. zack
    January 1st, 2012 at 23:40 | #184

    look at it this way, gents; by the end of this decade another 400 million Chinese will have joined the middle class (going by the 5 yr plan which Beijing rarely misses); so you’ll have a consumer class of a near billion in total by 2020 and i assure you, THAT’LL make an impression on greedy hollywood execs. With a market that size and with that sort of buying power, the Chinese film industry could easily own hollywood; it also means hollywood actors who decide to take on the ‘Free Tibet’ cause will have to go into early retirement, or face the humiliation of not getting work.

  185. Wayne
    January 2nd, 2012 at 02:24 | #185

    “so you’ll have a consumer class of a near billion in total by 2020 and i assure you, THAT’LL make an impression on greedy hollywood execs.”

    That will be an incredible achievement. We should remember that in 1949, after a century of imperialism, China was perhaps the poorest place in the world, poorer than India per capita, poorer than Ethiopia, with a primitive industrial base smaller than Belgium’s.

    Yet in the first 30 years of the revolution, life expectancy was almost doubled to 67 years (higher than India today), http://tinyurl.com/7h3omxf, literacy went up to close to 80% (higher than Indias 60% today), and this laid the basis for Deng to work his reforms upon.

    A group of Harvard researchers have made a compelling case that the reason for China economically outperforming India over the past three decades relates to the health achievements of Maoist China.

    “After 1949, China’s Maoist government invested heavily in basic health care, creating communal village and township clinics for its huge rural population. That system produced enormous improvements in health: From 1952 to 1982, infant mortality in China dropped from 200 to 34 deaths per 1,000 live births. Life expectancy rose from 35 years to 68.”
    http://tinyurl.com/2fj2r4z

    So in retrospect China seems to have done a lot right. The first thirty years improved the single two things that all extremely poor countries need to improve upon, life expectancy (health), and literacy. And the second thirty years concentrating on economic growth and gdp to provide the consumer goods and lifestyle of a modern society.

    Never have so many people been raised out of poverty, their well-being improved, in such a short period of time, than has happened in the past 60 years of the Peoples Republic of China. China’s system has clearly outperformed all other comparable developing nations, in fact almost all other developing nations in terms of saving lives, increasing literacy, and increasing the wealth of hundreds of millions of people. Of course while there is still a long way to go to catch up with the advanced Western countries, it is safe to say that China’s system is perhaps the most successful and efficient the world has ever seen in uplifting the living standards of a formerly extremely poor country.

    Another important point to note is this. China pulled herself up by her own efforts, not by invading and exploiting and using and abusing the human and material resouces of other countries, like the US, Britain and other Western European countries. These achievements were made in the teeth of a extremely hostile international environment (China was the first nation in the world to defeat US imperialism), with China bravely maintaining her independence from of course not only the US, but the Soviet Union.

    Of course while a lot of this information can be easily verified by academics, even the statistics of the CIA, the World Bank etc, it is not readily known to the general public of Western nations. All they see are bad things that one would find in any developing country, including the US itself right up until the late 1950s (afterall how many people died building the Hoover dam?). In a country of 1.3 billion, one can always find horror stories, stories of official malfeasance, and injustice, and then paint the blackest picture of that country.

    This demonstrates the extraordinary power of the mass media. China is seen as a despotic hellhole, while India a responsible, trustworthy rising ‘democracy’. The West would like China to take India’s road. Because China is a steadfastly independent country under the leadership of a communist party. China is harder for the West to handle and control, because she still, at least officially hews to Marxism Leninism.

    But India’s ‘democracy’ in terms of all the important criteria, life expectancy, infant mortality, per capita GDP, literacy, lags far behind China. Even though both countries began on a similar footing in the late 1940s.

    Noam Chomsky has pointed out that, India’s system, relative to China’s has killed probably well over 100 million people. And we can see what happened in the former Soviet Union after the collapse of socialism there. Excess deaths that far exceed on a proportional basis even what is claimed for the Great Leap Forward.

    The West does not have good intentions towards China. They do not want the Chinese people to be really free. Because if you can’t read or write, can’t eat, live in a povertous shithole, being able to put an ‘x’ in a box once every four years means absolutely nothing. By building up a huge, well-educated middle class, China is laying the groundwork for further democratisation in the future at a sensible pace.

    Without a large middle class, one man one votes means exactly shit.

    The type of Asian the West is comfortable with is someone like the Dalai Lama. A harmless figure, at least to the West, a blubbering, subservient Asian, who is no threat to them, is no threat when it comes to fucking their women, and will allow narcissistic Westerners to act out their ‘save the world’ fantasies. Of course whites love superstitious, ‘spiritual’ Asians like him. The cultural mindset of people like the Dalai Lama will never have the gumption to throw off imperialist oppressors and build atomic weapons to defend themselves against the white invaders. That is why the West loves these subservient lackey sell-out asians.

    Because the Western media is so powerful, what does China have to be extremely careful about. Of course it is to control the access of the brainwashing potential of this Western media. Western historians write trash history, slandering the Chinese revolution, slandering our leaders, saying the revolution was a disaster. Because their media is so powerful they are a real danger. Because if the Chinese people started believing what is said of them by Westerners, we could end up with a situation where they chuck out all the progress to date, embrace what Western capitalism imperialism desires of them, and in a few years or so, China will be a powerless, poverty stricken shithole that is the playground of rich Westerners (even more than she is now). It will be back to 1930s Shanghai when whites chained coolies to rickshaws to play a form of polo, the horses being Chinese coolies.

    China has to be on guard against Western subversion at all times, and must not be afraid to go a bit too far at times.

  186. January 2nd, 2012 at 04:21 | #186

    It’s too bad this thread has been so blatantly hijacked…

    Regarding all the hot air and hysterical claims here about “The Flowers of War”, who’s actually seen the film? This thread has a whole lot of baseless assumptions about what the film contains or signifies. It would clear the air to get some authentic criticism.

    I thought it was very good. Whatever the controversies, the Chinese movie-going public seems to be agreeing; it’s rated 8.1 (out of 10) on the film consumer review aggregator at Mtime.com. As of around Xmas it’s already grossed more than twice the total BO of the last big film about the Nanjing Massacre, “City of Life and Death” [《南京!南京!》]

    I’m trying to write up a review for my blog; I feel some concrete, informed criticism of the film is urgently needed for the world audience in light of a lot of negative hype and prejudice the movie is confronted with.

  187. raventhorn
    January 3rd, 2012 at 05:50 | #187

    @Sweet & Sour Socialism

    I saw the movie. Not personally impressed by it, but I can see why some might find it interesting. (I’m more personally impressed by original eye-witness accounts of the events, not by some dramatizations).

    Personally, I believe, historical events of significance do not need the embellishment of drama. In a word, it does feel like cheapening of the events, not celebration of them.

  188. January 3rd, 2012 at 21:31 | #188

    @Sweet & Sour Socialism

    Hi Sweet and Sour Socialism: when you get to writing the reviews, please let us know. With your permission, we may want to cross post it here.

    @raventhorn

    Personally, I believe, historical events of significance do not need the embellishment of drama.

    Ahh … a perfectionist. But how much of the public consciousness of the Titanic do you think derive from books and documentaries and how much from that blockbuster movie?

    Movies are an important of the human story telling process in the modern society – for better or worse.

    I myself haven’t watched this latest movie but plan to…

  189. Naqshbandiyya
    January 3rd, 2012 at 22:00 | #189

    @Wayne
    Speaking of the devil (the Dalai Lama), I was watching two videos of speeches given by Rebiya Kadeer, the department store oligarch-turned Xinjiang independence activist. Unlike with the Dalai Lama, whose boring Buddhist Shangri-la cachet is bigger than his political audience, you can be sure that the audiences receiving Rebiya Kadeer are firmly anti-China, and that they import her solely to bring an ethnic anti-China message. To my surprise, along with the usual dubious history, falsified statistics and accusations of genocide that we have come to expect from ethnic China-bashers, Rebiya seemed to put something with ethno-sexual undertones in her speeches. The Chinese government has a policy, she said, of taking young Uyghur girls from their Xinjiang homes to work in eastern China as “slave labor”. Labor didn’t seem to be the issue to her, though: what she repeatedly emphasized was that the girls were “beautiful”, aged 14 to 21, and “unmarried”.

    It’s pretty clear what she was insinuating, at least to her U.S. audiences soaked in a history of paranoia about white women and black men. Modest Muslim maidens from sacred East Turkestan are being shipped away on fuckbuses to the land of the yellow infidels! The girls’ guttural dialect only lubricates their Turkic throats for the Han phalluses of wealth and power. Where Uyghurs stick Hans with hypodermic needles, the Han stick the Uyghur girls somewhere else. The drawing of the Uyghurs’ hymen blood avenges the spilling of the Hans’ blood in the Ürümqi riots. But what of the Han men who would rather not partake in this inter-minzu orgy of Kadeer’s imagination, knowing full well the Uyghurs’ disproportionately high rates of HIV/AIDS?

    Again revealing again her patriarchal race-nationalism, Kadeer denies in the video what everyone knows – that these infections come from Uyghur drug use – instead attributing the disease to “Chinese” prostitutes for her men to use. (Uyghur and Tibet exiles agree: the oldest profession in the world did not exist in their regions until the Chinese Communist Occupation™, and even this new prostitution could never involve Our Women®!) It’s hard to say to what extent Kadeer’s sexual race-baiting moves the audience, but it hasn’t alienated them enough that she has stopped doing it. Perhaps it works because Westerners are fascinated with the idea, heavily promoted by Uyghur separatists, that Uyghurs are somewhat genetically “Caucasian”. They might not be Aryan enough for your taste, Wayne, but some “affirmative action” to portray Han kebabs in Uyghur naans by the Chinese government could kill two birds with one stone.

  190. raventhorn
    January 4th, 2012 at 06:57 | #190

    @Allen

    I personally thought Titanic was a terrible drama. I like the older black/white movie of Titanic a little better, because it was done through multiple person’s point of view, and thus you get a much bigger picture of the events. (The older movie had stories from so many different people, including the Chief Designer of Titanic, the Musicians, the Upper class passengers, the Lower class passengers, the pick pockets, the ship Captains of Titanic, the nearby rescue ships, some couple who got separated from their child, some old couple who found the child, etc. It really gave you a sense of the chaos of the sinking, and the sadness of human tragedy and pride, and the bravery and the humanity of people in distress).

    The new Titanic movie was just too much of the love story from a core small group of people’s point of view.

    Now, I’m not really a perfectionist. But I do prefer a “big picture” view of history. That’s because I think it’s much closer to the broader reflection of historical significance, and less likely to cause any personal biases from narrow set of views.

    Imagine if you will, if the DL got to make his own movie from his own personal view, or a Nazi German soldier got to narrate his view of events in Tibet, (OH wait, Hollywood did both those already).

  191. raventhorn
    January 4th, 2012 at 07:26 | #191

    @Naqshbandiyya

    I wouldn’t call these “race baiting”, but rather the long standing tradition in these “independence” groups of maintaining their “ethnic identity”/”ethnic supremacy”.

    Just look at the TGIE’s recent “election”, it was filled “attacks” questioning the “Tibetan-ness” of Sangay Lobsang, with rumors and innuandos of his “Chinese girlfriend” and his “Nepalese wife”.

    The entire term/issue of “Cultural Genocide” is centered around a dubious claim to some kind of Ethnic identity that is being threatened by “dilution”.

    That is simply Racism and Segregationism. (Racial Segregation in US was partially rationalized based on the same idea to “Keep the races apart” to prevent dilution).

    *
    Now, Gary Locke, now US Embassedor to China, when he was Governor of Washington State, he was attacked for his Chinese “identity”, even though his family has been in US for generations. He was even getting death threats.

    (HH members regularly get SPAM comments questioning their ethnic ties and identity).

    The Pattern of such racism vary, but are essentially the same.

    It’s never really about “Culture”, it’s not about “preserving” anything, because it is fundamentally a paranoia about losing some mystical ideals of “purity”.

    A Tibetan candidate in TGIE with a “Nepalese wife” is somehow “unpure”, instead of being embraced by TGIE.
    A Chinese American Governor is somehow “unpure”.

  192. jxie
    January 4th, 2012 at 11:44 | #192

    Back in 2009, Alessandro translated Kadeer’s interview with an Italian magazine “La Stampa” at Fool’s Mountain:

    While [Kadeer] speaks [to the reporter], she reaches out her thin fingers, jiggles her traditional long graying braids, touches [her] 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?”

    Framing their struggle as “white” vs “yellow”, and the revisionist historical narratives, in my mind make the Uighur Independent movement quite sad. Those historical figures with dubious achievements you rave about, unlikely were your ancestors, and for sure didn’t speak the language you speak now! Kadeer and co. have had a hard time to sell to most Americans/Europeans. Newt Gingrich even penned a piece, “America, meet your new neighbors: the Uighurs.” It was a partisan piece, but “the Uighers” nonetheless caught in the cross-fight.

    A nation in which the cause has not been totally lost is Turkey. It’s a long story about that…

  193. Wayne
    January 5th, 2012 at 06:02 | #193

    @Naqshbandiyya

    Anglo-Saxon men are the most sexually insecure in the world. Early images of the Chinese were racist to the extreme, especially in the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Chinese (and Asian) men were portrayed as out to prey on white women, to overrun ‘white’ countries – all part of the ‘yellow peril’ mindset of the era, and which carries on today albeit in an implicit form. And of course they use to burn black people alive (yes burn them alive and castrate them right up to quite recent history), if they even got a little cheeky to white women.

    Here is a poster from 1899 which showed white attitudes towards the Chinese at the time:
    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/87/YellowTerror.jpg

    Obviously Rebiya Kadeer brings in the theme of sexual exploitation by yellow people of half-white/half-yellow people to try and appeal to the grossest racial stereotypes of chinese. The white audience laps it up of course, as this gives them the opportunity to indulge in racism without appearing (at least overtly) racist.

  194. pug_ster
    January 31st, 2012 at 06:55 | #194

    http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2012/01/31/flaying-flowers-an-example-of-western-media%E2%80%99s-bias-against-china/

    Must be a weird Tuesday. Yiyi Lu actually wrote a balanced article about Western Propaganda playing a role pertaining how they review the film.

  195. February 1st, 2012 at 13:37 | #195

    @pug_ster

    Thanks for sharing that with us. I have placed that in the recommended readings list.

    So – even as the West debates whether Flower is anti-Japanese propaganda – and even as Japan refuses to own up to its history – here is an interview about the “comfort women” of SE Asia at Asia Times.

  196. Haikun
    February 2nd, 2012 at 21:17 | #196

    @Wayne haha this wayne guy is a totally pathetic and insecure loser! Oh I hate white man with asian girls, whaaa whaaaa whaaa, big whiney BABY! This loser typifies the fenqing phenomena! And does anyone call him out for being a pathetic racist loser losing Chinese face? Well we know the answer tot hat one!

  197. Haikun
    February 2nd, 2012 at 21:33 | #197

    Who can ever take PRC lectures on historical responsibilty when the CCP is itself the greatest historical revisionist??? Sure USA and some European states commited their own horrible acts but I am reading a typical US history book for college students right now; it has every sin from slavery to the pllight of the Indians spelled out clearly. Wanna read a CCP history book? Yes Nanjing was terrible and Japan should be ashamed for not coming out and teaching it in its history books clearly. But PRC lecturing? No way! No legitimacy! And a stain upon the historical events which they often try to propagandize. Common, lets see a movie about the Great Leap Forward, egotist Mao killed far more Chinese than Tojo ever could! Cultural Revolution, thats nice! Anti-Rightist Movement?! Oh yea lets see that! 641989??? Common give me a real Chinese drama! This is such BS, CCP flooding their state controlled media with all this one dimensional Japanese imperialist drama while totally over looking more sensitive parts of the CCPs own large scale killings of Chinese only tarnishes the memory of ALL the victims!

    And the most pathetic part is this socalled website claims to stand up against the one sided media portrayals! But all it succeeds in doing is demonstrating the inherent reactionary and ideological leanings of its contributors who are oh so willing to call out the west, japan, whoever, but dont have the guts to stand up look in the mirror and say “hey CCP running dog media, you are full of S*#$t”. So until that day roles around, keep barking at the moon but dont be surprised when nobody takes you seriously.

  198. Haikun
    February 2nd, 2012 at 21:36 | #198

    Sorry I am not trying to belittle the atrocious behavior of the japanese nor the genuine suffering of the Nanjing victims, but you ALL waltz around much larger and deadlier events in more recent Chinese history and that is complete BS. You all need to stand up and condemn the actions that killed many more Chinese in more recent times at the hands of the CCP. Man up or else dont pretend to care about what happened at Nanjing, cause such two faced talk is BS and a shame to all Chinese.

  199. zack
    February 2nd, 2012 at 22:40 | #199

    @Haikun
    yeah, yeah, “i’m not a racist but…” yada yada yada

    making the claim that xyz massacre is irrelevant in the greater context of history is not just morally depraved, it’s also mentally lazy; it’s an excuse for propagandists and racists to hide behind so they can continue carrying on as they were. Perhaps if the Chinese in the past had used Japanese civilians and non combatants as bioweapons research and sex slaves, you *might* have a point but as it is, you don’t and moreover, you’re simply a racist turd who apparently thinks that xyz thousands of Chinese dead and raped is nothing compared to abc thousands of , after all that is your line of reasoning: that because plenty of Chinese had died in the past, the rape of nanking was irrelevant.

  200. Wayne
    February 3rd, 2012 at 09:10 | #200

    @Haikun

    “You all need to stand up and condemn the actions that killed many more Chinese in more recent times at the hands of the CCP.”

    Haikun is a clown.

    The fact is the Great Leap Forward did not set out to ‘kill’ Chinese. The Great Leap Forward period was the worst period of mortality in the history of the PRC. This was due mainly to the worst climatic conditions in an entire century.

    But the fact is even though the GLF was the worst period in the history of the PRC, the average annual mortality for this period, even according to Mao’s worst detractors, was about typical for most developing countries of the time. And better than the crude mortality in British India just a decade before, and far better than the mortality rate in China before 1949, and certainly better than that of the 1930s and 40s when Japanese imperialism was rampant.

    The facts are clear. Chinese socialism perhaps saved more lives than any other political system in history. And the Maoist era saw the greatest and most rapid increase in life expectancy in documented history.
    http://tinyurl.com/6uua6fb

    In fact China’s life expectancy by 1976, was higher than what India’s is today. Even though both countries started off on more or less the same footing in the late 1940s.

    To compare the excess deaths of the GLF to the Nanjing massacre takes a sick mind, devoid of any sense of moral perspective. That is what Haikun has.

    Now I wait for this dog to prove anything I have said above to be wrong.

  201. Wayne
    February 3rd, 2012 at 09:31 | #201

    CCPs own large scale killings of Chinese only tarnishes the memory of ALL the victims!

    There were large numbers of executions after 1949. But these were not of entirely innocent civilians, of women and children. They were of the worst bandit elements and landlords who had abused and oppressed people in the old society. Of course in the climate of the times many innocent people would have suffered. But this can simply not be compared to raping and killing women for sport, or bayoneting children like what the sick and deviant Japanese did at Nanjing.

    On a proportional basis, the Nationalists on Taiwan killed at least as much as the communists, and the South Koreans even more (ala the Bodo league massacre).

    All governments during times of great insecurity, threat of foreign invasion, and internal instability will commit excesses.

    While people died during the CR –this was more due to inter-factional conflict—-in fact there is absolutely no evidence at all that violence was actually encouraged from the leadership. And it was in fact a revolution within a revolution. Overall however the Cultural Revolution period (if we consider 1966 to 1976) actually was the period of lowest mortality in the whole of Chinese history, up until that point in time. And it was the period which saw the greatest increase in basic literacy in Chinese and perhaps world history.

    The French revolution, on a per-capita basis, was more bloody than the Chinese revolution. Yet do the French then use the excesses of their own revolution to go and justify the German invasion of WWII?

    Of course not!

    Look how proud the Russians are, even today, of their achievements in the Great Patriotic War. Do they go around saying their pride should be diminished because Stalin carried out a few purges before the war?

    Of course not!

    Only a sick and diseased mind would use the excesses of a great social revolution to try and mitigate the completely wanton and gratuitous atrocities of foreign invaders.

  202. February 3rd, 2012 at 09:58 | #202

    @Wayne
    Here’s a brain stormer for you. How come Japan can become the 2nd largest economy (1968) overtaking UK, Germany, France etc in just 23 yrs after WWII?

    Why is mainland China so backward? Why isn’t mainland China industrilized or modernized the way Japan did in 23 short yrs?

    Is China’s modernization on the right track? It has been more than 60 yrs since 1949. I believe this is what the CCP did try to find answer and lead to a 2nd round of reform in late 1970s.

  203. Wahaha
    February 3rd, 2012 at 09:59 | #203

    No point to argue with a Falun, just a reminder.

  204. Wayne
    February 3rd, 2012 at 10:48 | #204

    @Ray

    “Why isn’t mainland China industrilized or modernized the way Japan did in 23 short yrs? ”

    Well quite simple. In spite of the devestation caused by WWII Japan had a massive installed industrial base. And the most educated population in the whole of Asia after WWII.

    Whereas China’s industrial base was smaller than Belgium’s—-a country less than a hundredth the size in population of China.

    Japan’s industrialisation did not take 23 years. That is ridiculous. Japan’s industrialisation began in the mid to late 19th Century – under the Emperor Meiji.

    Look at many of Japan’s huge corporations. When were they founded? Mitsubishi goes back to 1870.

    Japan was a predatory imperialist power since the 19th Century. China was an oppressed nation.

    Japan’s per capita GDP after the war was three times higher than that of China’s:
    http://www.nationmaster.com/graph/eco_gdp_per_cap_in_195-economy-gdp-per-capita-1950

    And then of course there was the Korean war which was a massive boon for the Japanese economy. This was simply good luck. Whereas China had to fight in this war and lost hundreds of thousands of men. China underwent an embargo at the hands of the US, and then in 1960s relations with the Soviets deteriorated to an extent that China was effectively isolated from the world.

    China’s life expectancy in 1950 was about 35. Literacy was 20%

    Japan’s was 60 years in 1950. 99% of Japanese children were enrolled in lower secondary schools.
    http://www.unesco.org/education/wef/countryreports/japan/rapport_1.html

    Finally look at this chart:
    http://www.efficientfrontier.com/ef/404/8.GIF

    China underwent a huge decline under Japanese and Western imperialism. The turn around point was not 30 years ago. It was 60 years ago.

    China’s performance relative to Japan over the past 60 years is nothing to be ashamed of. Remember Japan was an imperialist country allied to other imperialist countries. China was an oppressed country.

  205. pug_ster
    February 3rd, 2012 at 10:59 | #205

    @Wahaha

    Agreed, ignore that clown. This guy contradicts himself so much that he makes Newt Gingrich look like a straight shooter.

  206. February 3rd, 2012 at 13:15 | #206

    @Wayne
    Thanks for taking the time to make a proper respond. China didn’t get a fair chance of development until 1949, even then the country has no forex or gold reserve and was under threat of war. The real break didn’t come until 1971 when the PRC got back the seat at UN.

    Yes, Japan started industrialization in the second half of 1800s. Qing China started industrialization around the same time too but much less efficiently due to not being able to run the country effectively. On top of that the mounting indemnities that China was forced to pay foreign powers has destroyed China fiscally.

    Well, the Japanese economy was behind UK, Germany and France before WWII. The European had a rude awakening when Japan become No.2 in 1968. I would say that is a remarkable achievement. Of course one can say that Japan was able to concentrate solely on economy by giving up its political independence. However, I believe that China’s economic development in many ways have to follow the Japanese trend of high efficiency, high saving with low energy usage. The US mass consumption model would not be achievable for China.

    The fact of the matter is China achieved the most remarkable growth for the last two hundred years under the PRC.

  207. February 3rd, 2012 at 13:52 | #207

    There’s something deeply morally defective about people who compare the deaths that resulted from the famine in China between 1959-62 and something like the Japanese invasion.

    Anyone that can’t tell the difference between intentional killing and unintentional famine from poor economic and agricultural planning seem to have a part of their brain missing.

    Morality and the law takes intention seriously. Those who cannot see why that is important are likely cognitively defective in some way.

  208. Wayne
    February 3rd, 2012 at 16:11 | #208

    @melektaus

    Not only deeply moral defective. But deeply stupid and deeply inconsistent.

    Japan simply did not cause just the deaths killed by guns and bayonets. Japan and the other Western imperialists are responsible for ALL excess deaths caused by their presence in China.

    After all those who say Mao ‘killed’ millions because of excess deaths in the GLF. So why not hold excess deaths against imperialism? That then would be compariing apples to apples.

    If we do this then it will be seen that the greatest killer of the 20th and 19th centuries was not socialism (which in fact saved lives), but imperialism.

    After all the average annual mortality during the GLF was 24/1000 people. Just before 1949, annual mortality was 38/1000. Amazingly using the statistics of even Jung Chang and Frank Dikotter, it is clear that during the now claimed 4 years of the GLF fewer people in China died (by a country mile) than at any four year period before 1949.

    Even taking into account new medical innovations (which CHina hardly had the opportunity to benefit from anyway), it is clear that if China could have developed earlier, was free of imperialism earlier, she could have benefitted from the very rapid decline in mortality which happened under the PRC earlier and thus saving even more lives.

    It is clear that true national sovereignty in 1949, when the chinese people stood up, was what saved China, both in terms of the lives of her people, and economic development.

    No independence, and the human rights of the Chinese people are no better than that of Czechs and Russians under Nazi occupation.

  209. Wayne
    February 3rd, 2012 at 16:16 | #209

    After the Soviet Union fell, Russians experienced a massive increase in mortality due to capitalist shock therapy, with “excess deaths since 1989 runs into the millions”, as even this Economist article admits.
    http://www.economist.com/node/12494500

    UNC-Chapel Hill Professor Steve Rosefielde estimates that three million excess deaths were caused in the 1990s due to Yeltsin’s economic program.

    This is equivalent to the unnatural deaths of 27 million! people in a country as large as China.

    Therefore using Haikun’s logic we can also say Yeltsin is a mass murderer right?

  210. February 3rd, 2012 at 16:46 | #210

    @melektaus #207 and @Wayne #201 and @Wayne #209 and @Wayne #208

    Thank you – Agreed wholeheartedly.

    I have read too many times in Western blogs / press that while Japanese have been bad, it is the Chinese leadership that need to apologize most to the Chinese people – for killing more Chinese than all others combined. Something to that effect.

    That’s a very weird type of accounting indeed…

    Also

    @Ray #206

    You wrote:

    The European had a rude awakening when Japan become No.2 in 1968. I would say that is a remarkable achievement. Of course one can say that Japan was able to concentrate solely on economy by giving up its political independence.

    Well – we should not forget the Japanese stagnation of the last decade or so may have been caused by its caving to U.S. pressure for Japan to appreciate the Yen (but see IMF retort). If so, then its rapid rise in the early years must be heavily discounted. Political dependence can give some net benefits in the short term, but not necessarily in the long term. For China, political independece may have some cost today – but over the long term, I am sure it will yield more net benefits.

  211. February 3rd, 2012 at 16:59 | #211

    @Wayne #185

    Independence, health and literacy – these must be the basic pillars of human development and liberation. And Mao brought all those to China…

  212. zack
    February 3rd, 2012 at 17:28 | #212

    it is only because japan is at present an american vassal and slave that the West does not wish to focus too much on japanese war crimes; it’s politically inconvenient in an era where the Americans wish to form a cold war era bloc against them evil chinese communists.

    that’s why you have disgusting individuals like haikun who belittle the suffering of the Chinese victims of Jap war crimes (thankfully a lot of the ww2 Australian veterans i’ve spoken to don’t, they do in fact honour the fighting of the Chinese resistance and hate the japanese like hell) because they are motivated more by the immediate perceived threat of China’s rapid ascendancy.

    the knee jerk reaction amongst the West when they realise China would soon eclipse them economically and politically was predictable: containment. worst, they’ve deluded themselves that containment will ensure the safety of their own rapidly western led world order, whilst Beijing outmaneouvres Washington on the world stage by forming agreements and understanding with the arabs and europeans.

  213. jxie
    February 3rd, 2012 at 19:02 | #213

    Like to make 2 different comments on the GLF and the number of people who were supposed to starve to death between 1959 and 1961. First it’s from page 46 and 47 of a book by Wim f. Wertheim, Third World whence and whither? Protective State versus Aggressive Market. The book is partially available in Google Books. The following is the result of OCR (containing some errors) with my rudimentary corrections to make sure it’s readable:

    In the years 1960-61 serious food shortages occurred, as a result not only of natural disasters — drought and flood — but also of the disequilibrium caused by ill-advised government policies in the previous two years. In the chaos that followed, the euphoria of the ‘Big Leap Forward’ had definitely become a thing of the past. There was famine in parts of the country, an unknown but certainly terrific number, that may have amounted to sonic millions dying from starvation.

    None the less, figures in the tens of millions, now broadcast by both the present Chinese regime and Western media, and adopted by serious scholars such as Brugger and Reglar, and by Friedman and his co-authors, lack any historical basis.’ Calculations, based on comparing the official census figures of the 1950s with those of the 1960s, and showing that ‘between 17 and 29 millions of Chinese’ appeared to be missing, lack any semblance of reliability.

    When planning my first visit to China, in August 1957, I had asked whether I could meet two outstanding Chinese social scientists, Fei Xiao-rung, the sociologist, and Chen ‘Pa, the demographer. I could not meet either of them, because at that time they were both seriously criticized as rightists'; but I was visited by Pang Zenian, a Marxist philosopher who knew about the problems of both scholars. Chen Ta was criticized because he had questioned the figures in the pretended 1953 census. As a past organizer of censuses, he could not accept the official claims of the Chinese authorities that, within a remarkably short period of time, the total population of China bad risen from 450 to 600 million (even if the 17 million inhabitants of Taiwan were included) Chen Ta would himself have liked to organize a scientifically well-founded census, instead of one based on random samples at regional level, as had been the case in 1953, in which year. the methods followed were, in his view, unscientific.

    A recognized Chinese expert on the demography of China, Dr.Ping-ti Ho, Professor of History at the University of Chicago, also noted, in a book entitled Studies on the Population of China, 1368-1953 (Ho 1967). numerous ‘flaws’ in the 1953 census, concluding that in all, therefore, the nationwide enumeration of 1953 was not a census in the technical definition of the term. The figures for the separate provinces indeed show an unbelievable popula-tion increase of some 30% in the period 1947-1953, a period of almost continuous civil strife (Ho 1967:93/94)! John S. And, another well-known expert in this field, in an article published in 1983, argued that both the 1953 and the 1964 censuses had been very unreliable, in contrast with the 1982 census.* Mao himself suggested an interesting explanation for this: before his rime, peasants omitted to list their grown-up sons in the census returns. fearing that they would be called for military service; following the Revolu-tion people tended to list more children than they actually had, because this might increase the share their households would receive from the collective!

    My conclusion: it is useless to argue that in the 196os some 17 to 29 million people were ‘missing’, since there was never any certainty about the figure of 600 million Chinese. Most probably these ‘missing people’ did not starve in the calamity years 196o-61, for the simple reason that they never existed in the first place.

    Moreover, if the famine of the early 19605 was really as terrible as is being argued at present, the surviving rural population would surely have been weakened to such an extent that a rapid restoration of agricultural produc-tion to normal levels could not have been realized. This had been repeatedly the case with the pre-war famines.

  214. jxie
    February 3rd, 2012 at 19:23 | #214

    The prevailing numbers of the GLF starvation deaths nowadays range from 30 million to 45 million. Supposedly some 10 million people died in Sichuan alone, which works out to about 17% of people died (Sichuan was the hardest hit province). This number is so large that a double-take is needed: it’s more than the people, percentage-wise, died in Germany or Soviet Union in World War 2. It was at least 4 times larger than the Chinese deaths (in %) in World War 2. Throughout the World War 2, Soviet Union suffered from wide-spread starvation also, on top of the horrendous war deaths; and the World War 2 lasted more than the GLF starvation period.

    The poignant questions to ask are, why didn’t the people revolt? At the very least, why didn’t a large number of people turn into refuges?

    It is just so that a branch of my family live in some remote mountainous dirt-poor Sichuan region. Over the years, I have spoken to some tens of elderly who had been through those years and asked their first-handed knowledge. None of them had any immediate family members died. A few of them who needed to travel regularly, typically those who needed to work in the towns but lived in the rural areas, did tell me that they had seen dead bodies due to hunger. But the first-handed stories just seem to be so far off from the level of supposed deaths in Sichuan.

    The problem as I see is, the population base was some 600 million. A 10% off in data collection, you have a 60 million discrepancy. As Wertheim alluded to, both the 1953 and 1964 census data was of very quality. We will likely never know how many people died then — but I will be very shocked if in actuality more than 5 million did.

  215. Wahaha
    February 3rd, 2012 at 21:02 | #215

    There’s something deeply morally defective about people who compare the deaths that resulted from the famine in China between 1959-62 and something like the Japanese invasion.

    ***************
    Exactly,

    Why do you guys argue with someone who didn’t even have one ounce of love left in his heart ?

  216. Wayne
    February 3rd, 2012 at 23:32 | #216

    thanks Jxie–excellent posts. Appreciate it.

    Why do you guys argue with someone who didn’t even have one ounce of love left in his heart ?

    You have a good point there.

    But thinking about it a little more it probably is worth it to rebut Haikun’s idiotic comparison. It is frequently brought up by those who wish to defame the Chinese revolution, by those who want regime change in China.

    Consider our rebutals a bit of free target practice against a ‘dummy’!

    Seriously speaking there are three things our enemies bring up which to them seem like the trump cards. And some people on our side do not know how to respond.

    These three ‘trump’ cards of our enemies are as follows:

    1. Mao and the CCP killed more than Japanese (and Western) imperialism.
    2. Compare China to the rest of East Asia (especially Taiwan and Japan)—-surely this proves the Chinese revolution was a disaster?
    3. Why do you live in the West if you are pro-China—-you are a hypocrite!

    All three are of course ridiculous and should be easily disposed of. They expose the intellectual vacuity of the asker —people like Haikun.

    However, there are a few people on our side who seem to wilt under these questions, and instead duck them.

    I say we should welcome these questions. They can be met head on and the person asking them made to look like an absolute idiot and fucktard.

    I’m busy right now…….but I will post more on this in detail a little later.

  217. February 4th, 2012 at 00:32 | #217

    @Wayne
    Really excellent point. You would appreciate this comment from Naqshbandiyya.

    Allen and I were discussing highlighting the great insights you Jxie and others have offered as of late. This blog is much stronger with your contributions.

    Naqshbandiyya recently also suggested Chinese outside China speak up more in front of their personal friends against the unfair narratives thrown against ‘China’ and the ‘Chinese.’ Part of that means many of us will have to learn to spot the bigotry and fucktardedness.

  218. February 4th, 2012 at 15:32 | #219

    @Ray

    Thank for the link. It’s long but very good.

    Famines were common occurrences in China between the mid-19th century and the mid-20th century. During KMT’s “golden decade” (1928 to 1937) after KMT consolidated its power and before the 2nd Sino-Japanese war, there were 4 wide-spread famines (affecting more than 1 province). During the 8 year Japanese occupation, there were 2 more. Due to the lack of reliable demographic data, the starvation deaths during those famines were mostly guesswork. Typically in a pre-1949 wide-spread famine,

    1. A very large number of refuges spread out to other provinces.
    2. Agricultural productions suffered in the year afterward.

    Yet neither were the case during the 1959-61 famine that according to the prevailing starvation death number, should be more devastating. There are 2 types of “research” in the 30-45 million death camp. One is the likes of Banister, Coale, and Yang — all of their mathematical computations and models were based on faulty demographic data as suggested by Wertheim. The other type is the likes of Dikkoter and Jung Chang, Joseph Goebbels would have been proud of them. By no means I am a Mao’s fan for most of what he had done after 1957, but please, this smear campaign has to stop!

  219. February 4th, 2012 at 16:26 | #220

    @jxie
    Their study also did not take into consideration human behaviour. From 1950-1958, China’s birth rate exploded compare to the last hundred years or so. In 1959-1961, the birth rate would be close to zero due to the famine. All those missing birth was counted as famine death by Banister, Coale, and Yang.

    On top of that if you add in the regular death rate you would easily have a figure of 30-45 million. Frankly, I wouldn’t trust any study that has no exposure to China’s archive. They pretty much do their research from afar. A very unreliable method at best.

    I believe this is how the 1 million death figure on the US’s Iraqi invasion come from. I personally believe the figure to be closer to 200,000. Of course this is still a large figure.

  220. February 4th, 2012 at 19:07 | #221

    @Ray

    Exactly. Virtually all of those “studies” were essentially projections based on the population, birth rate, and death rate data around that period, which was of rather poor quality to begin with. No common sense was ever applied.

    See the US demographic history:

    1900 76,212,168
    1910 92,228,496
    1920 106,021,537
    1930 123,202,624
    1940 132,164,569

    From 1900 to 1930, the annual compound population growth rate was about 1.6%. Based on the same rate there should have been 144.6 million Americans in 1940. Since there was no war (yet), no major natural disaster or pandemic, STOP THE PRESS, we have an even bigger man-made disaster than the 1959-61 Chinese famine in percentage term — 12.4 million Americans were murdered! Down with the Kapitalizm!

  221. Antioxidants
    February 4th, 2012 at 19:29 | #222
  222. Wayne
    February 8th, 2012 at 04:13 | #223

    Dear friends:

    Study this chart carefully:

    http://acminc.com/wp/wp-content/uploads/Untitled7.png

    You are looking at perhaps the world’s greatest ever crime. The plunder of the East (and Africa) by the West. How many excess deaths, mortality resulted from Western imperialism?

    I highly recommend Mike Davis, “Late Victorian Holocausts”. British imperialism engineered famines in India, China and around the globe, which makes the GLF famine pale into insignificance by comparison.

    If we look just at India, the British are responsible for perhaps 1.5 billion excess deaths during their two centuries of rule. Similarly these whites fucked China for well over a century.

    Mortality during the GLF was much lower than before 1949. It was no higher than that of other developing countries of the time.

    Compare China and India after independence.

    Do not be ashamed of China’s socialist revolution. It was the turning point. Because China secured her independence she could start developing again. And it is largely thanks to the extraordinary leadership of Chairman Mao Zedong.

  223. March 3rd, 2012 at 14:42 | #224

    I wonder how many have watched that new Pentagon propaganda movie – Act of Valor?

    I haven’t watched it. But it looks like it’s a real hit!

    Heard that it’s a brainless movie but with some really cool actions and awesome toys.

    I like this op-ed from Salon about the movie.

    The Pentagon’s amnesia-inducing propaganda

    The military’s first feature-length film wants to make Americans forget about our imperialist
    misadventures

    When philosopher George Santayana said “those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” he meant it as an admonition — not as an endorsement of mass amnesia or historical revision. This should be obvious. Yet those operating at the shadowy intersection of the Pentagon and Hollywood either don’t understand – or more likely, refuse to understand — the thrust of the aphorism. Instead, with this week’s release of a much-awaited film, Santayana’s omen has been transformed into a public mission statement for a burgeoning Military-Entertainment Complex.

    Since 1986′s “Top Gun” rekindled the Pentagon-Hollywood relationship from its post-Vietnam doldrums, the collusion between the military and the entertainment industry has become a blockbuster con, generating huge benefits for both participants — and swindling the American public in the process.

    The scheme is simple: The Pentagon allows studios to use military hardware and bases at a discounted, taxpayer-subsidized rate. In exchange, filmmakers must submit their scripts to the Pentagon for line edits. Not surprisingly, those edits often redact criticism of military policy, revise depictions of historical failures, and generally omit anything else that might make audiences wonder if our current defense policy is repeating past mistakes.

    If a studio doesn’t agree to the edits, then it loses access to the martial equipment, and typically, the film is terminated. If, by contrast, filmmakers agree to the edits, access is granted, and the film gets made at a cut-rate price to the studio. Except in the credits’ fine print, the audience is never told about the censorship.

    The predictable result is a glut of movies that both celebrate U.S. military policy and whitewash the checkered history of military adventurism — and relatively few major movies questioning that policy and that adventurism.

    No doubt, as a system of stealth coercion, the arrangement has been wildly effective. But with America now questioning the efficacy of constant invasions and the morality of never-ending occupations, the Pentagon is getting worried and thus intensifying its agitprop to ever more manipulative extremes. Last year, for example, it cemented its first full sponsorship of a major film, “X-Men: First Class,” integrating the movie into recruitment ads. It’s now going even further, fully financing its own feature-length film, “Act of Valor,” appearing in theaters nationwide starting Feb. 24.

    Casting active-duty SEALs, the film is ostensibly about a mission to neutralize terrorists. But as one of the filmmakers let slip this week, its heroic portrayals and triumphs are really designed to once again make us forget the past.

    “I’d like to see the legacy of Vietnam put to bed,” said “Act of Valor” filmmaker Mike “Mouse” McCoy in an interview with the Huffington Post. “It was a really bad time in American history, absolutely, but it’s time to sort of forget that and forget those sensibilities and don’t associate our troops and our men and women to that conflict anymore, and time to really open our eyes to say, ‘What’s going on in this world? What are our men and women in uniform really doing right now for us?’”

    While it’s true that America’s recent wars are not exactly the same as the Vietnam War, a stunning new report in Armed Forces Journal proves there are troubling similarities we could learn from. With history’s lessons in mind, we might learn to refrain from involving ourselves in foreign quagmires because the human costs are too high. We might also learn that some conflicts have no military solution at all.

    But such lessons run counter to a Pentagon focused on perpetually repeating a military-centric past, so those lessons are being deliberately obscured. That’s indeed a triumph of the Military-Entertainment Complex, but it’s a Pyrrhic victory for America — one that guarantees Santayana’s warning goes unheeded.

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