Archive

Author Archive

Yin, Yang and Political System

June 19th, 2011 6 comments

By Wahaha (cross posted from anti-cnn)

If you check the definition of 阴阳 in Wikipedia, you will see the following :

“In Chinese philosophy, the concept of yin yang (simplified Chinese: 阴阳; traditional Chinese: 陰陽; pinyin: yīnyáng) is normally referred to in the West as “yin and yang” and is used to describe how polar or seemingly contrary forces are interconnected and interdependent in the natural world, and how they give rise to each other in turn.”

And “Yin yang are complementary opposites that interact within a greater whole, as part of a dynamic system.”

Is this the way how Chinese understand 阴阳 ? I beg to differ. Read more…

(Stephen Gowans) “The sinking of the Cheonan: Another Gulf of Tonkin incident”

June 2nd, 2010 3 comments

May 20, 2010

By Stephen Gowans

http://gowans.wordpress.com/2010/05/20/the-sinking-of-the-cheonan-another-gulf-of-tonkin-incident/

While the South Korean government announced on May 20 that it has overwhelming evidence that one of its warships was sunk by a torpedo fired by a North Korean submarine, there is, in fact, no direct link between North Korea and the sunken ship. And it seems very unlikely that North Korea had anything to do with it.

That’s not my conclusion. It’s the conclusion of Won See-hoon, director of South Korea’s National Intelligence. Won told a South Korean parliamentary committee in early April, less than two weeks after the South Korean warship, the Cheonan, sank in waters off Baengnyeong Island, that there was no evidence linking North Korea to the Cheonan’s sinking. (1)

South Korea’s Defense Minister Kim Tae-young backed him up, pointing out that the Cheonan’s crew had not detected a torpedo (2), while Lee Ki-sik, head of the marine operations office at the South Korean joint chiefs of staff agreed that “No North Korean warships have been detected…(in) the waters where the accident took place.” (3)

Notice he said “accident.”

Read more…

(Letter from Maitreya Bhakal) The difference in the Indian and Chinese governments’ approach towards Separatism and Development – and what they can learn from each other

February 11th, 2010 2 comments

While the Chinese government prefers development over human rights (like freedom of religion and speech), the Indian government, while guaranteeing these rights, neglects development.

Both India and China face the problems of separatism. Indian Naxalite movements and the recent riots and uprisings in Xinjiang and Tibet further highlights the need for respective governments to tackle the issue seriously.
Read more…

(Letter from pug_ster) China-US relations at all time low?

January 31st, 2010 96 comments

About 5 months ago, Jon huntsman was interviewed by Wall Street Journal and seems positive to bring China-US relations to the ‘next level’ as mentioned in my piece here.

January was a bad month between China-US relations. First there was the google incident. Then the US announced the $6.4 billion in arms to Taiwan. Now China wants the beloved panda Tai-Shan back (I’m kidding about the Tai-Shan part.) Though the arms sales seems to be the straw that broke the camel’s back. If you go to Chinadaily’s website, there is no less than 10 articles and opinions about this spat. Read more…

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , , , ,

(Letter from Brian James) Celebrating Yo-Yo Ma: A World Class Musician

December 9th, 2009 No comments

In case you haven’t heard, the multiple Grammy®-winning cellist Yo-Yo Ma, is celebrating his 30th anniversary recording with Sony Music through the release of Yo-Yo Ma: 30 Years Outside the Box, a deluxe limited-numbered box set of his recorded legacy. Comprised of 88 discs of original album releases and an additional two discs of bonus material, 30 Years Outside the Box is the definitive collection of this iconic artist in a presentation as beautiful and timeless as the music itself. It has quickly become a popular gift for the holidays! Read more…

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

(Letter from pug_ster) National Geographic got into the propaganda act?

November 22nd, 2009 271 comments

Saw an interesting blog of some brave woman who took great risks of taking a picture of 2 Uyghur ‘protesters’ before they got shot Chinese police. It even have a colorful story with it:

Writer Matthew Teague photographed these Uygur men, advancing upon Chinese forces, moments before they were shot.

Many people carry cameras these days. Some have uncommon courage. On page 36 of this issue, in the story “The Other Tibet,” there is a photograph taken with a cell phone. The photographer was not a professional. She was a Uygur woman who documented the shooting of a Uygur man by Chinese security forces on a street in Urumqi, capital of China’s Xinjiang region. She later gave the picture to National Geographic’s photographer Carolyn Drake.

Like their Tibetan neighbors, the Uygurs have a history of struggle, but when Carolyn began covering them more than a year ago, she had no idea that the conflict would explode into one of China’s most deadly uprisings since the Tiananmen Square massacre in 1989. By June of this year, she thought her coverage was finished; she returned home to Istanbul. Then hints of unrest began to filter back to her. “At first I didn’t realize the severity of it. I started sending emails to my translator and friends in Kashgar, Hotan, and Urumqi, but no one responded.” She anxiously searched news sources, but the picture of what was going on seemed incomplete and unclear. There was only one way to fi nd out: return to China. She did so in July.

Carolyn, writer Matthew Teague, and a Uygur woman with a cell phone camera all took great risks to bring us the story of a struggle for human rights. Many people carry cameras these days. Sometimes they help us find the truth.

Yes, sounds like the human rights abuse Chinese police are at it again. If picture is worth a thousands words, maybe the picture would better explain why.

http://blogs.ngm.com/blog_central/2009/11/editors-note-uncommon-courage-2.html [updated 2011-12-31; originally at this link]

Of course the blog is a story about the ‘human rights’ struggles in Xinjiang and the July 5 protests.

http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2009/12/uygurs/teague-text

Even in the colorful story in the National Geographic magazine, they didn’t explain about how the so called ‘protests’ got ugly and almost 200 people died, namely by those knife wielding maniacs whom National Geographic refers them as ‘protesters.’

I have seen some other propagandized reporting such as this:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2009/oct/22/china-executes-tibet-protesters

But this National Geographic article takes the cake.

(Letter from justkeeper) Understanding China geopolitically

November 14th, 2009 139 comments

I just came across this old post on Sun-Bin:http://sun-bin.blogspot.com/2008/10/john-mauldins-geopolitics-of-china.html, which I am sure most of you must have read, most of the points in that article are valid and verifiable, but there are two I believe to be particularly helpful in understanding the mindset of Chinese people and considerations of Chinese leaders in their policymaking:

  1. The statement “However — and this is the single most important fact about China — it has about one-third the arable land per person as the rest of the world. This pressure has defined modern Chinese history — both in terms of living with it and trying to move beyond it.” — understanding this will help one understand why the PRC leaders often talked about survival as one key elements of ‘human right”, they are serious about this, historically many people die (in fact, famine was commonplace in Chinese history) whenever there was upheaval (and vice versa).
  2. The geopolitical impreative that China needs to Maintain control of the buffer regions.(Mongolia, Xinjiang, Tibet, etc).

Read more…

Categories: Analysis Tags:

(Letter from TonyP4) Tsien Hsue-Shen, the father of China’s missiles.

October 31st, 2009 20 comments

He passed away at 98.

The description of his life in Wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Qian_Xuesen.

I just finished a book on him by Iris Chang. It is translated from English to Chinese. A very fascinating life.

99.9% chance he was not a communist when he was in US. He was a dedicated scientist.

The joke of the century is the witch hunt of communists in US and drove Tsien back to China to help China to develop missiles. It speeds up China’s missile development by at least 10 years when China did not know how to build good bicycle.

Did Middle East and N.Korea benefit from his initial work?

The book mentioned one or two flaws in his life. I believe he needed to do so to be political stable and be able to secure the funds for his work.

Categories: technology Tags: , ,

(Letter from pug_ster) China’s 4 billion Investment in Afghanistan: Nation building?

October 16th, 2009 15 comments

http://worldblog.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2009/10/14/2098654.aspx

It looks China’s investment policy toward many African countries is taking root in Afghanistan. It is the usual kind of investment; building roads, schools, railway, hospitals, telecoms, etc… in exchange for copper in Aynak mines. Given the poverty rate in Afghanistan, this is something badly needed there. In some way, the US was kind of unhappy about this because US has provided some kind of stability in Afghanistan to make way for China to put their investment there.

US has been investing in Afghanistan into nation building in terms of defeating the Taliban and having elections there. However they have been focusing on political and social changes within Afghanistan which might’ve upset some locals while China focuses on the economic side of nation building. Can China succeed where US failed?

(Letter from TonyP4) Nobel Peace Prize

October 16th, 2009 15 comments

Gladly we accept Nobel Prize for Obama.
For nothing he did during his nomination.

Potentially he holds the key for peace.
By not pressing the button to send nuclear missiles to destroy the world,
Or not sending the nuclear carrier to enforce his kingdom.
Or buying peace with money like no tomorrow.

Practically Deng saved a million from starving every year.
Not a nomination nod for this short guy.

Not destroying is more important than saving life.
Or Black is a better color than Yellow.

Wake up, you idiot committee.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

(Letter from pug_ster) China Yearns to Form Its Own Media Empires

October 6th, 2009 66 comments

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/05/business/global/05yuan.html

When many people think China and media industry, many would probably be right to think that it would be a paradox. It seems that China’s government is encouraging consolidation of the media entertainment industry and possible partnerships with Western companies to create a media industry within the China’s market. The question is that would these Western Media companies would work within China and comply with Chinese laws and governance? Many of the Tech companies working within China are already doing that. Cisco has supplied the technology for their GFW. Google’s search engine within China blocks out sensitive information like the TS 1989 incident. Yahoo has provided China information which lead to arrest of an Chinese dissident. My guess that many media companies who are looking to do business in China would comply with China’s laws and censorship. What do you think?

Categories: Uncategorized Tags:

(Letter from TonyP4) Buffett praise for Chinese suits

September 26th, 2009 12 comments

Here is one of the many links on this story
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/8262477.stm

This is free advertising for Made-in-China corp. – different from another bad story on bad quality on Chinese products.

The story has a kind, warm human touch too. Thanks Buffett!

Categories: News Tags: , ,

(Letter from btbr403) Translation:Can you provide an example to refute this senior fellow?

September 20th, 2009 209 comments

admin’s note. The following is a blog post from 多维博客(h/t to Snow). Besides re-posting an article originally published on the Study Times (a weekly publication of the CCP’s Central Party School) in 2008, it drew a vigorous debate among Chinese with nearly 300 comments (I hope that someone could translate them too), many of them are interesting. Although we posted the Chinese version last year and A-gu commented on that, it was until recently that btbr403 volunteered to translate it. DeWang and Allen helped with the translation.

Following is the translation of the original post:

The Study Times of The Central Party School published an article by Zhang Weiwei (he was Deng XiaoPing’s interpreter, and he wrote an opinion piece The allure of the Chinese model ), a senior research fellow at the Modern Asia Research Centre, University of Geneva, Switzerland. He showed his excellent eloquence in the invitation only Marshall Forum on Transatlantic Affairs, saying that he had visited more than 100 countries, but couldn’t find one that achieved modernization via democratization. The European and American scholars present couldn’t find any examples to refute him.
Read more…

(Letter from pug_ster) Memories of Mao

September 16th, 2009 61 comments

http://www.atimes.com/atimes/China/KI17Ad03.html

As the countdown of the 60th anniversary of the founding of the modern China looms, it seems that China is getting ready for the big party, from the restoration of Chang’an street to the Film created for the special occasion Jianguo Daye. One thing that seems to be absent in this occasion is Mao himself.

By all means Mao is regarded to many Chinese as the George Washington of China when China rose as a nation from the burning ashes of WWII. Yet, the Chinese media did not mention anything of his death at September 9. The movie released at 10/1 Jianguo Daye means “Lofty Ambitions of Founding a Republic” doesn’t sound ‘patriotic.’ Even textbooks are devote less space for Mao than the previous years.

Chinese history wrote of Mao’s deeds of 70-30 (70% good, 30% bad). The older generation Chinese remember China before 1949 have great regards of Mao because they have seen the devastation of WWII. The middle generation Chinese have bad memories of Mao because of the cultural revolution and great leap forward. The young generation Chinese care less about Mao, and tend to remember what Deng Xiaoping, Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao did.

What do you think of him?

Categories: Uncategorized Tags:

(Letter from Shane9219) Where was the current US President born?

September 9th, 2009 39 comments

A case was filed last month at a US Court alleging US President Obama was born at hospital in Coast Province, the Repulic of Kenya. The case file can be read from here

http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/kenyan-birth-motion-to-expedite-authentication.htm

The core piece of evidence is a birth certificate obtained through back channel by an immigration lawyer.

http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/obama-certified-copy-of-registration-of-birth-in-kenya.htm

More can be followed on this attorney’s blog

http://www.orlytaitzesq.com/blog1/

There were some allegation during last year’s US President election but was rejected as speculation. With newly found evidence, what will be the outcome of this case?

Categories: Uncategorized Tags:

(Letter from TonyP4) City of Dreams, or nightmare?

September 7th, 2009 24 comments

The Boston Globe article on this Sunday.

“In 1842, on a British warship anchored off the city of Nanjing, Chinese and British representatives signed a treaty that brought the First Opium War to an end. The British victory had been decisive, and along with the reparations and trade concessions exacted from China was the requirement that Hong Kong, a coastal island sparsely populated by farmers, fishermen, and the occasional pirate, be given to the British in perpetuity as a crown colony.’

———
A kind of upset of the article twisting history and the truth. It reflects the ignorance of the west and journalists.

How outrageous to say the opium pusher (the Britons), was good for the victim (Chinese)?

If it is your reason using force to enforce the opium trade to developing countries, what kind of civilization we’re in?

The British Parliament favored trade profit over justice. They had nothing to trade with China’s silk, porcelain…, but plenty of opium grown in India.

Britons did provide Hong Kong with stability (but stole a lot from Hong Kong as most colonial masters did). HK’s success is on mainly due to its special location (close to China), the expert businessmen from Shanghai and the cheap labor of the refugees.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

(Letter from pug_ster) Jon Huntsman Challenges in China

September 3rd, 2009 30 comments

Jon Huntsman the current Ambassador to China has an interview with WSJ about the current challenges in China.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125191530217380465.html

BEIJING — Relations between China and the U.S. are at a critical phase, with the next few months likely to test whether the two sides really have built strong and lasting ties, said the new U.S. ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman Jr.

In his first sit-down interview with Western media since arriving here last month, the 49-year-old former Republican governor of Utah spoke of his long ties to China, including his 10-year-old adopted Chinese daughter’s excitement at returning to her roots and how as a young man himself he had a brush with global diplomacy when he helped former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger set off on a secret mission to China.

Mr. Huntsman on Wednesday mostly mused about the array of serious challenges that the two countries have to deal with in the next few months, including climate change, the global economy and military ties.

“We’re putting the relationship to the test, there’s no doubt about that,” Mr. Huntsman said. “And I suspect we have more on our plate than ever before in our 30 years of a formal diplomatic relationship.”

On Wednesday, for example, the U.S. trade representative was due to make a recommendation to President Barack Obama on a request by U.S. tire manufacturers to limit Chinese-made tire imports. The two sides have to cooperate on addressing global economic woes, with China critical of the ballooning U.S. budget deficit and weak dollar. In addition, the two sides face sticky issues in dealing with North Korea and Iran, two countries that aspire to develop nuclear weapons.

The two sides are also engaged in difficult negotiations about climate change, with pressure building for a deal during President Obama’s planned trip to China in mid-November. Before setting out for China, Mr. Huntsman said, Mr. Obama told him to focus on a few big-picture issues: global economy, energy and climate change.

U.S. ambassador to China Jon Huntsman, Jr., says relations between the countries are at a critical point. Still, Huntsman expressed hope that despite inevitable disagreements, the two nations could work together.
Read More

“China is in fact a stakeholder in all of these issues, and arguably wasn’t in years past,” Mr. Huntsman said. “If there’s one aspect of the relationship that’s unique and different from what it was before, it is the number of truly global issues that together we’re approaching and hoping to seek solutions on.”

Mr. Huntsman said there already are signs of progress. Ties between the two countries’ militaries are restarting after a year of frosty relations that was triggered by Washington’s agreeing to sell weapons to Taiwan, China’s rival. Also, a regular dialogue on human rights is due to restart this year after more than eight years of virtually no discussion.

The two countries’ more mature ties were reflected in talks Mr. Huntsman had with Chinese leader Hu Jintao, when the ambassador was received last week in the Zhongnanhai leadership compound in downtown Beijing, seat of the central government’s power. “He was very forthright in saying we have to realize we’re not just going to always agree on all issues. I didn’t expect to hear that.”

Mr. Huntsman succeeds Clark T. Randt, whose more-than-seven-year term made him the longest-serving U.S. ambassador to China. Unlike Mr. Randt, who went to college with George W. Bush, Mr. Huntsman isn’t personally close to President Obama — and indeed is from the other main U.S. political party.

But Mr. Huntsman does have extensive experience in Asia. He was a Mormon missionary in Taiwan, where he learned to speak mandarin Chinese fluently, and he served briefly as ambassador to Singapore. He also worked in the office of the U.S. trade representative when China joined the World Trade Organization in 2001.

His family business, Huntsman Corp., has business ties in China, but Mr. Huntsman said he had long since sold his stake in the company and has no ties to it. He also said he had signed standard ethics papers recusing him from any issues surrounding the chemical company.

In the weeks before his departure, he said his adopted daughter eagerly anticipated returning to the country of her birth — a feeling that has become infectious. “I see it in her eyes every day the excitement of living in a place she never thought she’d return to,” he said.

He also recounted his own childhood experience: how as an 11-year-old he was at the White House where his father was working as a staff assistant. It was 1971 and Secretary of State Kissinger invited him to his office and let him take his bag to his car before setting out on one of the path-breaking trips to China, which led to the re-establishment of relations in 1979.

“The part I remember best was when I said where are you going?” Mr. Huntsman said. “He said please don’t tell anyone: ‘I’m going to China.’ ”

I do have a question about the relations between the 2 countries are on the ‘critical phase.’ China has more or less enjoyed the relationship with the US under the George W. Bush’s presidency. Huntsman’s predecessor Clark T. Randt Jr, did little to engage China on the sensitive issues while promoting economic ties between the 2 countries. Also, GWB’s insist to go to the Olympics opening ceremony despite mounting criticism was much a face saving gesture to China.

The other US presidents wasn’t as kind to China. Then first lady Hillary Clinton came to China in 1995 and ‘shamed’ China on women’s rights. George HW Bush put sanctions on China after the Tiananmen Square incident in 1989. GWB’s presidency was the best thing since Henry Kissinger decided to have formal ties with China. Could Barack Obama and Jon Huntsman do better than what GWB did during his 8 years of presidency?

(Letter from Wahaha) Why is western democracy fundamentally wrong ?

August 18th, 2009 132 comments

This post is not a comparison between the system in China and western democracy. It doesnt in any way imply the system in China is a better system, either economically or politically.)

Recently, there is “war” in USA about obama’s plan of healthcare reform. It has become an issue of if government should be allowed to butt into the private business of healthcare insurance. I am not here to judge which way is better, but after reading most media reports, it seems to me that media is trying to make it a conflict between government stand and public opinions; to make it an issue if government should have such power (or do you want socialism in US?).
Read more…

Categories: media, politics Tags:

(Letter from TonyP4) A Nation of No Losers

August 4th, 2009 27 comments

We do not let you be a loser!
Your mistakes will be rewarded handsomely.

When you bought clunkers that you should not have, we give you $4,000.
When you had mortgage that you cannot afford, we’re going to bail you out.

When you lose your job, we extend your benefit.

When you do not have saving, we give you free health care.
When you have saving or a job, we punish you by taking your health care away.

Teenagers, the more babies you have, the more benefits you have.

Drunk drivers, no one will prosecute you as the entire jury are drunk.

All athletes are rewarded with millions for taking drugs.
However, we will strongly oppose to any foreign athletes doing same.
It is an America invention!

No other country lets their citizens owning guns to kill other citizens.
NRA and his puppet politicians will give you millions of funny ‘reasons’.

When any company fails, we bail it out.
The executives are rewarded with bailout bonuses for bringing down a company

We need you to vote and re-elect us in 4 years.
The children of today cannot vote, so let’s pass our debts to them.

—————–

The country above is US. However, I can write one on China. China and US are just two extremes. Hope each will choose middle ground.

Health care on China: If you do not pay, you die. Just one of the many examples I can think of. Depending on whether you’re a China basher or a China apologist (see another Letter), you will poke some fun on them.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

(Letter from John Morrison) China?

July 29th, 2009 15 comments

Hello to Fool’s Mountain:Blogging for China. I have been watching the furor over the global economy for the past 8 months as a past time, being unemployed union carpenter since thanksgiving of ’08. Much has been made of the “cause of this global crisis’ mostly revolving around mindspeak from the economic community on Wallstreet. Television reports assure us daily that everything will soon be corrected and America will continue to lead the world down the primrose lane towards happy ever after, or something akin to this.

Read more…

Categories: Letters Tags:

(Letter from TonyP4) Are you a Chinese basher or a Chinese apologist?

July 27th, 2009 14 comments

Most likely your answer is neither. It is human nature to assume him/herself is unbiased.

Both the bashers and apologists have been brain washed. They will not listen to a different point of view, let alone discuss with you with open minds.

Depending on the topic I could be guilty as charged.

I wrote a piece in comparing human right between China and US. I have the highest approval rating from one forum. More than 100 read the long comment and voiced their approval.

The piece is here.

My piece on Tibet did not fare that well. Judge it for yourself.

There were more comments on my comment than the original article. Most are Tibetan exiles I guess. So, their POVs are completely different from my Han’s POV. I understand and accept their disapproval.

We hope we’re all be able to understand each other’s POV even if it completely different from yours. We do not want to limit our point of view like the frog under a well but a fool that can move mountain.

Reading the recent posts inspire me to write the above. Hope it will not offend any one.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

(Letter from Hohhot, Opposing Viewpoint) Xinjiang, Tibet, beyond: China’s ethnic relations

July 23rd, 2009 161 comments

unity

The ethnic protests and clashes in China’s westernmost region of Xinjiang on 5-6 July 2009 and the following days have caused around 200 deaths. The deadly violence, mainly between the Uyghur (and Muslim) population and the Han Chinese – but also involving the security forces killing some protesting Uyghurs, in circumstances that are not yet clear – has shocked and polarised public opinion across China. They have also focused renewed attention on the sensitive and complex theme of the relationship between different ethnic groups in the People’s Republic of China.
Read more…

(Letter from TonyP4) China auto after Detroit

July 15th, 2009 21 comments

China is finally coming after Detroit from this WJS article
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124761586630042303.html

Random thoughts.

* With the recent bad quality problems of Chinese products, China really cannot establish a name brand outside China – at least for a while. It is a good way to buy a brand name.

* Cost too much to build dealerships in foreign countries and learning international marketing and laws. It is a good and cost effective way. They are many former US dealers begging for dealership with ample of cheap retail space.

* China still lacks a lot of expertise in top auto technologies such as engine, transmission and environmental control devices. All these can be transferred from Volvo. A win-win situation.

* With China’s (or the company’s) reserve, it is a timely bargain that will return better than most of the past foreign investments, let alone the US treasuries.

* Why China will succeed in this deal?
– The $25 or so (with exception of Mexico) hourly wage cannot compete with $1 hourly wage else where.

– The huge and growing market of China itself.

– The Chinese engineering graduates are no dummies. They’re so dedicated and they work longer hours than most in the west. 12 hour work for one engineer actually equates to 16 hour work of the counterpart in the west working 8 hours when you consider coffee breaks, socializing in the office, holidays, vacations…

* It is the major part of the auto market. Electric cars from another Chinese company is a very small part of today’s auto market. I was a little surprised they did not bid on some division of GM like Pontiac.

* Volvo is a good and reliable car, but on the more expensive side. My friend after surviving from a could be fatal accident with a Volvo is buying Volvo cars for life.

Hope it will not go to Germany way to build cars so sophisticated that it is a big problem to own one in US with expensive parts and unqualified technicians.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: , ,

(Letter from may) Translation: Letter from Xinjiang – Reflections on the Xinjiang Problem

July 13th, 2009 116 comments

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

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

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

The original letter is here.

Letter from Xinjiang – Reflections on the Xinjiang Issue
Read more…

(Letter from Willow) China’s Ethnic Fault Lines

July 11th, 2009 38 comments

I would like to bring readers’ attention to this article in the WSJ. As I do not personally live in China, I do not wish to comment at length on the issue though I personally feel the natural regionalism is countered by an equally strong cultural ethos of staying united, especially after so many attempts to divide up the country.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,

(Letter from raventhorn4000) Honduras, Iran, and China, Part Deux, Detractors missing basic point

July 4th, 2009 51 comments

There has been much comments, analysis, blogs over the Honduran “Incident”.

But the detractors of the current “new government” of Honduras miss the fundamental contradictions of their own arguments.

They argue that “this is not a coup, because ex-President Zelaya was removed for a good reason”. But that is simply an “end justifies the means” argument. Military Coups are wrong, not because we judged upon the justifications of the coups, but because we recognize that use of military force to change a government is simply the wrong means. It cannot be a Constitutional method.

They argue that “this is not a coup, because the military acted under the order of the Supreme Court of Honduras.” But they simply miss the point of even having a Supreme Court. A Supreme Court cannot simply make an order legal, when the Articles of Constitution of Honduras clearly does not prescribe “exile”.  “Removal” simply means removal from official authority.   After that, Zelaya would be powerless to act upon anything, but he should still be able to rally his supporters as legitimate politcal expression.  “Arrest” or “Exile” are fundamentally beyond the scope of “removal” as written in the Constitution of Honduras.

In this, I am reminded of the foundational principle of “Separation of Power”, and “Judicial restraint” in many Democracies.

In US history, a case was decided by the US Supreme Court, Marbury v. Madison, where the justices refused to sanction President Thomas Jefferson for ordering non-delivery of “appointment letters” for several judges. Thomas Jefferson had essentially refused to execute laws and appointments passed by the US Congress on the previous term. The US Supreme Court avoided the confrontation with the Executive body by dismissing the case on a “standing” issue.

The US Supreme Court believed that such issues would work themselves out by the People over the long term. And “judicial restraint” means that the court should refrain from making any orders to compel the other 2 political branches in show downs. Let alone use the military or side with the military in any arguments with the President.

They speak of the “unconstitutional referendum”, and how unpopular Zelaya is. But if he is indeed unpopular, then why worry about the “referendum”? Even if he won the “referendum”, it would not legally change the “Constitution”. The Honduran high court has already ruled that the “referendum” would have no legal effect on the Constitution.

The detractors have simply missed the whole point. The fundamental wrongfulness of “military coup” is in the madness of the “method”. Undoubtedly, many previous military coups listed similar “justifications”, but we do not look up the “justifications”, only the process of law. Whether Zelaya should be removed is not the question, but whether the Supreme Court of Honduras had the legal authority order “exile”, and whether the military of Honduras could legally execute such an order.

For such an order, and such justifications, the Supreme Court and the Military of Honduras, have done far more damage to the Democratic process of Honduras than a single Zelaya could possibly do with his “referendum”.

Had Zelaya succeeded in his “referendum”, it would at least be representative of the People’s will, and political branches of Honduran government can reach compromises, or even stand firm and refuse to accept Zelaya as President for a new term. (Surly that cannot be that difficult, if Zelaya is so unpopular.)

But now, we have a precedent of Honduran Supreme Court ordering the military to “remove” a president into “exile”.

The damage to the credibility of the Court’s impartiality and the military’s non-involvement in politics is untold.

And now, the Supreme Court of Honduras will have to deal with the consequential question, can they now be “removed into exile” by the foreign and domestic supporters of Zelaya?  Whatif tomorrow, 1 of the generals use his troops to “remove” the Justices into “exile” on the order of Congress?

*
I for one, now finally and fully appreciate the wisdom of Justice Marshall in Marbury v. Madison, and the principle of Judicial restraint.

Categories: Analysis Tags:

(Letter from raventhorn4000) Honduras, Iran, and China

June 30th, 2009 54 comments

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

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

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

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton had this to say:

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

(Letter from shane9219)It’s time to define new Chineseness

June 25th, 2009 50 comments

Many western press and intellectuals appear to suffer a deep perception gap on modern day China. The root cause is their persistent refusal to recognize the political legitimacy of modern-day Chinese philosophy and ideology. To many western liberals and conservative alike, they perceive the current CCP government as helpless and inward looking, trying hard just to stay in power. Such perception may look logical on the surface, yet can not more farther from the truth.

The handful generations of Chinese leadership since Man and Deng have established a unique brand of worldview for themselves through internal philosophical debate and in practices. They always have a clear thinking of what they want to be in the future and in the world, yet still follow Deng’s wisdom of “holding capabilities to yourself and bidding for your own time”, recognizing the stage of development in Chinese society and bending backward hard to rise the living standard for common people. They are not afraid of looking outside to introduce themselves to new ideas and opportunities, yet still persistent on self-reliance and self-development. The contradiction raised from passiveness and dynamism, stubbornness and openness, showing of leaping progressive attitude with very little regard to western liberal values may confuse and arouse many in the West, yet look perfectly harmonious through the lens of Chinese culture and philosophy.

The modern-day Chinese brand of philosophy and ideology was founded first by great leaders like Mao ZeDong, further shaped by late giants such as Deng XiaoPing, with a deep influence coming from China’s philosophical past. While Mao may be a giant on philosophy and ideology, he was a peasant and gambler on economical development policy. While Mao may be scorned widely by the West, he is still a hero to many common people in China and throughout the world. Deng succeeded on where Mao failed, and also contributed to his brand of pragmatism.

As China continues her development and the process of nation building, it’s also time to define a new sense of Chineseness. Please share your thought on this subject through debate and discussion.

As a source of food for thought, you may read interesting and provocative articles from a serial by the newspaper Guardian from the link here (http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/series/will-china-rule-the-world)

Categories: Uncategorized Tags:

(Letter from TonyP4) Fatherly advice: Eight success principles for being an official

June 19th, 2009 41 comments

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

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

Here is a translation for your enlightenment.

Read more…

(Letter from pug_ster) 6/4 and Zhao Ziyang’s Chinese’ reactions around the World…

June 9th, 2009 12 comments

6/4 came and went and I came to this article about the Overseas Chinese’ reactions to these this event. Much credit given to China Beat.

http://thechinabeat.blogspot.com/2009/06/64-around-world.html

I rather not discuss issues pertaining to Media nor from the Chinese dissidents living in that country but rather get a consensus of what the Overseas Chinese’ reactions to 6/4 incident and as well as Zhao Ziyang’s memoirs.

Here’s some reactions from several countries that I have found so far:

Hong Kong – 60,000-150,000 held in Candle light vigil.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/asia-pacific/8083569.stm

Taipei – Around 20 Taiwanese protesters held Candle light Vigil.
http://www.straitstimes.com/Breaking%2BNews/Asia/Story/STIStory_385657.html

From the China Beat Article: I quote some interesting responses.

Paola Voci, New Zealand

Here in Dunedin, 4 June is a day like all others.

Because today was my last lecture, I decided that at least I had to check how many of my students knew about what happened 20 years ago (of course many students were not even born then!). To my relief, only a couple had no idea about what 4 June and the Tiananmen Square protest meant. Most had some sort of knowledge that “a protest took place and people died”. We took some time in class to just go over some of the basic facts, some of the issues and the relevance that they still have in today’s China. That was my very small contribution to keep the memory of this tragic event alive and stimulate some discussion on its significance…

Chinese students associations on campus (either from mainland or Taiwan) do not seem to have organized anything to commemorate the event. At least nothing visible. But, the day is not over yet…

Since I came to live here, I felt that for NZ, China has a rather strange proximity and remoteness. Yet, I was expecting a little more discussion about China in the media today…to match at least some of the interest that the Olympics were able to inspire. But, at least so far, it seems as though, even without any CCP intervention, June 4 has been forgotten in NZ.

Tom Pellman, Lima (Peru)

Peru’s leading newspaper El Comercio printed a brief dispatch from its Beijing correspondent Patricia Castro describing this year’s measures by Beijing to pre-empt protests on Tiananmen. Castro’s piece mentions the government’s banning this year of then-student leader Wu’er Kaixi (exiled to Taiwan after 1989) from re-entering the mainland ahead of the anniversary. Other dissidents and activists in Beijing were also forced to leave the capital, the newspaper reports.

Aside from minor coverage in El Comercio, Peru.com, from Peru’s blogosphere, adds a report on Beijing’s efforts to censor popular websites like hotmail and twitter in addition to controling the capitol’s main square. Interestingly, in a city with more than one hundred years of Chinese immigration and tens of thousands of Chinese immigrants living in Lima, there has been less attention paid to the Tiananment anniversary than might be expected.

John Ruwitch, Hanoi (Vietnam)

Six-four didn’t make its way into the official Vietnamese media, of course, but reports about it on CNN, which is widely available in Hanoi, were not censored. When I told a Vietnamese friend I found that mildly surprising, given the somewhat similar positions that the Chinese and Vietnamese Communist Parties find themselves in, plus their much-trumpeted friendship, she laughed and said: “But we hate the Chinese”. Long history there, obviously.

I did not scour the VN blogosphere for info on six-four. I did notice, however, that a seasoned journalist/blogger called Huy Duc wrote a blog quoting from the newly published memoirs of one deposed and deceased CCP gen-sec whose name in Vietnamese is “Trieu Tu Duong”. Huy Duc discusses how DXP ultimately sided with Li Peng, leading to the crackdown, and comments: “There are men like Li Peng everywhere, but only in places where the fate of a nation lies in the hands of a few individuals could could a network of people be ground up by tanks like that.” At the end of the piece, the author concludes: “The aspirations of a people can never be crushed with tanks and bullets.” I thought that was fairly strong stuff coming from inside a country where the leadership, again, is engaged in a juggling act similar to that of its giant neighbour and freedom of speech is limited. Then again, the longer I’m in Vietnam, the more I wonder if the differences between the two out number the similarities.

China Beat have more responses from Singapore, Tokyo Japan, India and Italy. But I chose to ignore them because they got consensus from the Media or from the dissidents instead.

Categories: Uncategorized Tags: ,