Unraveling the torch relay 'conspiracy'

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There's been a lot of discussion on this blog and around the blogosphere in general about the protests surrounding the torch relay. And I have noticed an increasing amount of comments from people (mostly Chinese I'm presuming) who are now starting to contend more and more that there is some sort of larger-scale conspiracy taking place to sully China's image ahead of the games, and that it's the 'West' that is trying to hold back China as a rising global power. And, to a very small degree, there may be some validity to part of this contention. Allow me to give you a thumb-nail sketch of what is most likely happening on the ground in San Francisco in advance of the torch relay there as an example of how this could be argued.

First off, let me point out that there is no sort of broader-scale Western government conspiracy taking place to darken China's image. Unlike here in China, the Western media is not controlled by the government. Media outlets in the West are free to report on anything they wish. And in fact, if any government organization even hinted to the media that it should be covering these protests, it would be a way bigger story than the actual protests themselves. Where the conspiracy aspect comes in is from the very small minority of people who have an axe to grind against China, or are - what I would deem -- 'professional protesters' who feel obligated to get behind a cause because they think it's the right thing to do and the media that covers the events.

When I use the term conspiracy, I use it in this dictionary-based context:

Conspiracy: The act of conspiring.
Conspiring: To act or work together toward the same results or goal.

Other definitions of conspiracy include the terms 'evil,' 'illegal,' or 'wrong.' I'm not going get into the debate of whether or not the torch protests are any of the adjectives listed. But I will say that these protests are - in effect - a conspiracy, as in the fact that it's more than two people or groups getting together to push or be involved in a cause.

Activist groups in the West have learned how to use the media very well over the years. Unlike in the 1960's in the West, where groups of people would use grassroots methods like posters and word-of-mouth to tell people about some type of protest or march, today activist groups are experts when it comes to public relations. GG Bridge banners.jpg I can guarantee that the media outlets in San Francisco have already received dozens of news releases from various organizations, telling the media that they will be at location X at time Y, and spokesperson Z will be available for interviews. These groups will also have set up transportation strategies to bring as many people as possible to the protest, and will have worked days in advance to create signs and banners. They will also have outlined a strategy to create the greatest amount of media coverage possible for themselves, by putting their most colorful and boisterous members in the direct line of the cameras, and will generally throw their full support behind the most militant in the group who are willing to even break the law to get the media to cover their protest. Anyone who thinks these protests are spontaneous events is truly naive.

As for the media's coverage of the events, here's what's likely happening. Depending on the resources that any given media outlet has available (AKA: reporters, cameras, etc) they will likely be at the locations designated by the protest organizations an hour to two hours in advance, and may have pre-planned coverage mapped out. media scrum.jpg Many reporters, during this time, may also be engaging in 'off-the-record' discussions with protest organizers about what their plans are, in an effort to maximize their coverage and get the best possible sound and video. This is not to say that the media agrees or disagrees with the message the protesters are putting out. For the media, its contact with the protesters is merely a way of getting the job done more efficiently. Because of the competitive nature of the media industry in the West, there is intense pressure on reporters to get the best possible coverage to try to 'one-up' the competition. And it's because of this media culture in the West that the minority gets the majority coverage. If there were no protests surrounding the torch relay, the media coverage of the event would be much more minimal. Resources would likely be reallocated elsewhere to other more interesting and attention-grabbing stories. Activist groups have learned this, and have tailored their efforts accordingly.

Noting all this, one could argue that a conspiracy of sorts is taking place: A conspiracy by the protesters to get their message across, and a conspiracy by the media to get the best story possible.

But the one thing that I hope the Chinese understand is that the people protesting the torch relay represent a narrow minority in Western society. I'm using my own figures here, but I would presume that of the 7.2 million people who live in the San Francisco Bay area, about one percent - at most - of the population will turn out to protest the torch relay. Of the remaining 99 percent, I would say that 95 percent have no or little interest, one way or the other, in Tibet, the torch or the Olympics in general. So while the concept of a conspiracy may be in play in a dictionary-based form, the notion of a broader anti-China campaign is simply just not the reality.

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46 Comments

deerhunter said:

Ah! The Illuminati!

XniteMan said:

Paul,

Thank you for the nice article, but I think you missed the point. The protests should not be given too much importance, and the true problem is, the average western people have very deep (negative) misunderstandings on China, Chinese people and things happening here.

It would be more interesting if you try to analyze why it is the case, and, if it has anything to do with the media, why is the "market-directed" media playing a role in it.

XXXXXX said:

fucker

victtodd said:

I want to point out that the western mainstream media are far less independent than commonly believed. Take CNN and Fox news's report of invasion of Iraq in 2004 as an example, they simply ate out of the hand of US government, churning out any news fed by US army and government. They tend to, at best, attempt to appear independent only when they see fit. I think the film "lion for lambs" vividly depicts what really happened.

vittodd said:

Aside from the topic, Chinese people are justified to feel greatly offended when London police failed to protect the petite female Special Olympics athlete holding the torch being assaulted by a Tibet thuggish protestor. Think about it, assaulting a disabled girl on a wheelchair, how vicious and despicable!!!

XniteMan said:

Oh, and, Paul, please read this article and comment on it: http://www.mitbbs.com/article_t/ChinaNews/31349928.html

For those who don't speak Chinese, why is it that, when Hu Jintao visited US only 2 years ago, there were so many pro-Falun Gong protesters out there and virtually no pro-Tibet protesters, and now it's completely the opposite? Remember that Falun Gong was banned in China in 1999, and 7 years after that, they were still active enough to break the security line in the White House, yet only 2 years later they have disappeared from such a great chance of showing the world their views?

My opinion, their ridiculous "organ transplant" lies have undermined their credibility and thus they have lost funding support from CIA or whatever organization which chose Dalai Lama as their next front of anti-China activities.

OK, you don't support my opinion, but please give a viable explanation to this phenomenon.

Turtlewind said:

If you think it's only the Free Tibet crowd that's spending days to organise demonstrations in SF, you might want to have a bit of a poke around MITBBS. Just saying, is all.

Tiffany said:

China is "sullying" its image all on its own. The Chinese ambassador to China was on national television news last night. He argued with the presenter, said that Tibetans are lying, said the news is lying etc etc etc. His main point was that the general public doesn't know the truth. And he's right! Truth is, the Chinese government has killed millions of people, pays off Chinese to marry Tibetans, and has taken control over a region they had no right to; all the while, lying to its citizens and themselves. Why won't they leave Tibet alone and let the dalai lama rule as he should?

Tiffany said:

Vittodd: Where are you getting your information? Many new stations aired the footage of this. The "petite woman" is a news host on London television. She has full use of both of her legs. She is not disabled.

vittodd said:
Aside from the topic, Chinese people are justified to feel greatly offended when London police failed to protect the petite female Special Olympics athlete holding the torch being assaulted by a Tibet thuggish protestor. Think about it, assaulting a disabled girl on a wheelchair, how vicious and despicable!!!

Xylitol said:

Tiffany, please look at this:
http://img148.imageshack.us/img148/382/49785094sa0.jpg

Another image here:
http://www.zhongnanhaiblog.com/2008/04/china-increases-the-rhetoric-a.htm

Please study history better than what your government/some malicious persons fed you. Tibet has been part of China on and off, it's not just of the result from marrying Han Chinese princess to Tibetans. Forget the long history claims before People's Republic is founded, we will use the recent one. In 1951, when PLA "liberated" Tibet, they indeed signed a treaty which agree that Tibet is part of China. So, the case is closed. Tibet is part of China and there is no way China's government will let it become independent. Yes, with all the protests, you might be able to embarrass many Chinese people but we probably will be able to adapt just like many Americans adapt to constant protests regarding Iraq war.

For talk with Dalai Lama, once who is a traitor (and probably still a traitor), staged an uprising and funded by CIA, how can Chinese people trust him? This is why China's government always say, unless Dalai Lama drop all the independent activities, then we will start to talk. IMHO, this included reject all the funding from foreign governments through NGO, and cut ties with them. I doubt Dalai Lama can afford to do that.

Chinese government might be harsh sometime, but what they did is to protect the country so it will be united. In the past, many Han Chinese suffers too and not only Tibetans, but Han Chinese learn that they need to adapt, Tibetans should do it.

And maybe you should study your own country's history first? If you are American, What has your government done to the now minority American Indian people? Have you ever heard of Republic of Lakotah? http://www.republicoflakotah.com/

Many Chinese people who have access to Internet do not rely to Chinese media alone, they read from many sources, a good proof of that is anti-cnn.com. Chinese people are full of curiosity, they are not just brainwashed people like what many Western media are trying to portray.

Mistah Kurtz said:

The Beijing Olympics could be VERY interesting. But hey, look at it this way: All the news about boycotts, protests and riots
will make a nice change of pace from doping and steroids.
To be honest, I was kind of hoping to see some people protesting about the torch being in a no-smoking area.

Mistah Kurtz

deerhunter said:

@Tiffany:

Who is the "Chinese Ambassador to China"? Just wondering where you get your information.

And why don't the Chinese have any right to Tibet? They invaded it fair and square. Xinjiang too, for that matter, though with lots of support from the Brits. The US and Canada did the same with their native populations, no? Peace loving as natives were, they stood in the way of a continental empire and resources. I can't really imagine the US giving back California or Texas. Can you?

Oh right, but settlers brought civilization, didn't they?

XniteMan said:

Turtlewind,

LOL, I do not think so, as I have explained. You have not answered my question.

If the Falun Gong people are behind the protests, where are they? Where are their slogans and flags? Or have they suddenly abandoned their longly-held "belief" and joined the "Free Tibet" movement?

J B said:

Ah yes, the classic "the US did it!" and "it's legal!" arguments. Because of course if the US did something that makes it OK, and the Tibetan government had a choice when they signed the treaty in 1951.

XniteMan said:

J B,

Read this:
http://www.zhongnanhaiblog.com/2008/03/the-journalism-divide-discussi.htm#comment-4038

Not saying I think what you said has anything to do here.

icemilkcoffee said:

Regarding the number of San Franciscans who participated: To be fair- this event is happening on a wednesday. There are a lot of concerned people on both sides of the issue who are not able to join the protests. If this was held on a saturday I bet you the turn-out would have been much larger. I know I would have gone and joined the pro-china counter demonstration.

victtodd said:

to Tiffany
Are you stupid or what? Do you have the decency to read other's comments before you try to contradict them? Which London television station hire a female Chinese Special Olympics athlete as its news host? Do you even understand the meaning of Special Olympics?

Janus said:

Hey Xylitol:

re: signing a treaty = it is done for all eternity:

This particulary ironic. China, of all countries, should be aware of UNEQUAL TREATIES signed UNDER DURESS.

I used to think that Western self-righteousness was the worst in the world. Now I know that China has, in this respect, far surpassed the West.

Smarter than you,
-Janus

XniteMan said:

Janus,

Your government agrees that Tibet is part of China. If you don't agree, ask your president to change his mind or vote him out of his position. It would be much more effective than arguing here.

Xylitol said:

Janus, if I want to be someone who is simple minded, I would just say Chinese people learned from Westerners after all. They taught us.

But no, if you learned the treaty carefully and read the history, there are many Tibetans who agreed with treaty and it helped many Tibetans who lived poorly under feudal rule. This is one of the problems with many "Free Tibet" people, they don't try to learn and just support blindly. Chinese government is not perfect, please look around, in this past 50 years, USA and many other Western governments made many failed policies too. The problem is the present, has China improved after they bid the Olympic 7 years ago? What will happen with the riot when all the World's eyes were not on China? The government has put a lot of restraints toward the riots, and although they are "managed media tour", it is still a good choice that they do it. I would imagine it could be worst if it happened 20 years ago. I believe China will improve, everyone wants improvement.

And talking about unequal treaty, certain Western governments still do it, namely USA, read http://www.republicoflakotah.com/
Or maybe you just want to avoid it? Just like many Americans when faced with ugliness of their country, they try to change it to other countries' problems or just simply ignore it.

Maybe Chinese people around the world should start funding "Republic of Lakotah" movement, and then set up NGOs, and then training them for uprising. What will happen if that happened to your country?

The way I see the protests, most of them are not really Tibetan supporters, they are just people who really have anti-China feeling and they use this Free Tibet movement to unleash their ugliness and hide behind and saying to the world that they are doing good thing. We know for the fact that, many Westerners indeed have anti-China sentiment (whether because of race superiority [racist], economy problems, etc), don't you think they will not use this opportunity to bash China?

XniteMan said:

CIA former executive assiant SAM HALPERN on why CIA supports "Free Tibet":

I think basically the whole idea was (to) keep them (CHINA) annoyed, disturbed. Nobody wanted to go to war over Tibet... It was a nuisance
operation, basically nothing more. I would think that from the American point of view, it wasn't gonna cost very much, either money or manpower,
anyway, it wasn't our manpower, (it was) Tibetan's manpower.

Source: http://www.youtube.com/v/Iwu5qYosTo0

Nano said:

"Unlike here in China, the Western media is not controlled by the government."

Western media is corruptible and with money it can help to spin any issues from black to white. To me, western media is taking the opportunity of the Olympic Games to bash China. This can obviously be seen from its unwillingness to check the facts of the situations beforehand and many of the reportings are truly distortions and lies. There is definitely a conspiracy behind these PR smear campaigns. Time will unfold the grand conspiracy plan.

Chatter said:

Has anyone here actually thought that whoever is behind this - be it Western or indeed Easter,n has in fact succeeded in their overall goal? That of turning us all against one another... In my opinion this is the 'actual' issue. Conflict, confusion, it's all a smokescreen for something much larger.

XniteMan said:

Chatter,

Yeah, it's very sad. Chinese people were educated in the school and told by the media that the world is peaceful and people all over the globe are our friends. It was Deng Xiaoping's words that "Peace and Development are the two primary goals of the world". It hurts for many to find out that they were just too simple, too naive.

XniteMan said:

Evidence of CIA financing, equipping and training the "Tibetan Government in Exile":
http://www.intellnet.org/documents/700/040/744.html

Twofish said:

Also there is a "conspiracy" of such in internet discussions. You are more likely to meet people who care passionately about an issue or have strong views on internet discussion groups than you are in the general population. If your only contact with a different people is through internet chats about politics, you are likely to get a very misleading view of what the general population believes, since you are talking only to people who care about politics, and a lot of people just don't.

Twofish said:

The other thing is that the amount of noise that a group makes is often inversely proportional to the amount of power that it really has. Activist groups have nothing to lose by making a lot of noise, whereas major governments and corporations always think very, very carefully about what they say in public, since an off-hand remark by the CEO of Coca-Cola or McDonald's could have huge impact. This means that activist groups can move very, very quickly. However because they don't have cash and resources, they burn bright, but not for very long.

Playing the "media game" is something that any major organization has to learn how to do, and one thing that has happened is that the Chinese government is now merely somewhat bad at it rather than completely incompetent. Viewing it as a game keeps one from getting too emotional about it. Of course, there are lots of people that are trying to make China look bad and smears its image, but to effectively fight back, you need to learn the rules of the game rather than just complain about it.

> So while the concept of a conspiracy may be in
> play in a dictionary-based form, the notion of
> a broader anti-China campaign is simply just
> not the reality.

Actually there is an anti-China campaign but its not particularly broad, and part of the reason the olympic torch is making news is that this is the first time in years that you have an anti-China media event handy.

There are people in the US government that really think that China is the big enemy and must be defeated to preserve US power and insure freedom and democracy reign supreme in the world. The dangerous thing for China would be an alliance like the one that Ahmed Chalabi formed with the Iraqi National Congress or for something like the Cuban exile organizations to gain power.

However, these people have so utterly discredited themselves with Iraq, that it's hard for them to see them getting popular support in the next five years or so, but they have to be watched very closely. The good thing (since I'm in the pro-China camp) is that the "free Tibet" groups and the "neoconservatives" really don't get along that well, and you'll find the "free Tibet" people campaigning just as hard against George W Bush and the War in Iraq as you do campaigning against China.

Fortunately, China has some important allies in the "shadow war" the most important of them is the corporate America. Also, unlike the situation in 1989, the Chinese government has the general support of the overseas student population.

Twofish said:

There really is a conspiracy of sorts. I was at a Brookings/CSIS meeting on Taiwan in which Carl Gershman, the head of the National Endowment of Democracy, was saying that he was trying to get Tibetan independence, Uighur groups, overseas Chinese activists, and human rights groups together to oppose the Communist Party. He wasn't making any secret about this, and he is doing it because he genuinely thinks that a "color revolution" in China is a good thing. He also mentioned that is was tough because these groups are small, divided, and badly funded.

I don't think he is "out to get China" but I'm sure he wouldn't mind working with people who would, and when you suddenly had editorials in the Washington Post about Uighur nationalism right after the events in Tibet, I thought of him.

Now if you really want to get involved in politics, it's not really that hard, since these sorts of meetings are public and everyone was there from military people, people from the PRC government, people from the ROC government, academics, lobbyists, journalists, etc. etc, and there are all sorts of transcripts online.

Look at think tank websites for these conferences, and just go to the meetings. You meet the people who make policy and you get some excellent free food in the process.

Watch CSPAN. Look up voting records. Write letters to your Congressman. Go and visit your Congressman. Vote. Get people who agree with you to vote. Shake hands. Collect business cards. Figure out who you can work with, and who you can't, and work with the people you can work with.

XniteMan said:

Twofish,

Nice read.:) I'm not sure whether the NED people are bearing good intentions, but they are taking the wrong approach. Chinese people will never accept any independence groups, and getting them together with overseas Chinese activists and human rights groups will only ruin the reputation of the latter. This is so obvious, are they really too dumb ro realize it? Or do they have other considerations?

I was so confused why Hu Jia, seemingly a nice guy otherwise, would retain such a "dirty" tie with Dalai Lama, and write that outrageous letter to Merkel, by which he lost the sympathy from Chinese people. Now maybe this is part of the reason, as he is funded by NED.

Twofish said:

Xniteman: This is so obvious, are they really too dumb ro realize it?

It's obvious to anyone that has had any exposure to China, which doesn't include the people at the NED

1) They believe what they are doing is right. Part of the problem with believing what you are doing is right, is that it make you blind to how rational and well-intentioned people might oppose you.

This is one reason I perfer the world of business to non-profits. Business people are just trying to make money so they tend to be less blind to understanding how someone could hate them.

2) The trouble with a lot of people in US foreign policy circles is that they have never really had deep experience with other cultures and countries, and this lack of experience shows. Also they think in terms of a "worldwide democracy movement" without realizing that conditions in China might be very different from conditions in Kenya or the Ukarine.

Actually I think that being stupid is more dangerous than being conspiratorial. The analogy I make is who is more dangerous with a machine gun. A four year old or a Mafia hitman? If power hungry people in CIA was behind all of the anti-China noise, then you can go to the CIA and make a deal.

In some ways it's like the Japanese attacking Pearl Harbor. The one admiral that knew anything about the United States knew that this was insane, but no one else knew much about the United States.

Xniteman: I was so confused why Hu Jia, seemingly a nice guy otherwise, would retain such a "dirty" tie with Dalai Lama, and write that outrageous letter to Merkel, by which he lost the sympathy from Chinese people. Now maybe this is part of the reason, as he is funded by NED.

Think of it from Hu Jia's point of view. He really is this ordinary person writing these letters, when all of a sudden he gets all this world attention. The New York Times is talking about him. World leaders are talking about him. Everyone says that he is a hero. Unless he is extraordinarily political adept, he will let this go to his head and say whatever he thinks will keep people's attention.

The trouble with this is that is *kills* the democracy movement. I saw this in the 1990's with the overseas Chinese democracy movement, which Nancy Pelosi help kill. One problem was that they passed an immigration law that allowed PRC nationals in the US to get green cards, but reduced the necessary green cards for later students. What happened was that this created a gap between old students and new students.

The problem is that NGO's tend to be underfunded. So when suddenly you get to talk with President's and the Department of State it goes to your head, and you get into really nasty internecine fights over access to the government officials. Since the officers of the NGO's get power and money, people suddenly fight over parking tickets. Meanwhile everyone leaves the movement.

Worse in return for this support, the overseas Chinese student movement worked with Pelosi and the AFL-CIO to try to kill China getting into the WTO. This was a *highly* unpopular position and basically killed the what remained of the post-TAM student movement.

What really does help democracy in China is to grant large numbers of student visa. Don't preach, don't even tell people what to do. Just let Chinese students into the US, have them look for themselves at how the US economic and political systems work and decide for themselves what will work or not work in China.

Two weeks ago I was at a seminar at Columbia Law School and this evening I was at a talk given by the Chinese Financial Association in Midtown Manhattan on the subprime meltdown. What I was thinking to myself was that in those rooms were the future of China's government and China's economy, and having Chinese people on Wall Street, at thinktank meetings, in courtrooms, in chip design factories, as lawyers, bankers, engineers insures that when the fate of the world is being decided, there will be Chinese at the table.

@deerhunter:

The illumanti and their corporate tentacles probably bit off more than they can chew, thinking they could stroll into China they way they have most other countries.

But the conspiracy is actually working in reverse. The profiteering powers that be conspired to sell the developed world on the wonders and potential of a commercially developed China and completely overlooked or deliberately ignored the other aspects of China and its own ambitions and grievances.

Nixon came to China seeing a hedge against the USSR.

MNCs came to China seeing 1 billion slaves that would become 1 billion cosumers without rights.

The Chinese saw them bringing the new blood and food that the dragon needed to get back up on its feet and assume its rightful place in the world.

tommydickfingers said:

victodd - you are the one acting stupid. tiffany was in fact right. the petite girl holding the torch in London was a TV presenter (konnie huq I belive(. the paralympic athlete (not special olympics, something you obviously don't understand the meaning of!)was in Paris, not London. Looks like the one not reading mails properly was you. here's some advice: read your first post again.

Xylitol said:

tommydickfingers, it does not change the fact that a disabled girl was attacked by Tibetan protesters.

Here for more pictures:
http://www.zonaeuropa.com/20080410_1.htm

STQ said:

good post, but you are still missing the point.

I think alot of chinese, especially oversea chinese are not really angry about those "free-tibet" protesters per se. What really pissed us off are the biased western media.

Sure, I don't like those "free-tibet" groups and I don't agree with them. But they have been around for a while now. What really surprised me and angried me was the massive anti-china coverage by the western media.

we wouldn't be talking about a conspiracy if it was just couple "free-tibet" or human rights groups.

we are talking about a conspiracy because it looks like all those groups, and pretty much the entire western main stream media, plus some western politicans are all joining together to bash China.

rose said:

An interesting read:

Risky Geopolitical Game: Washington Plays ‘Tibet Roulette’ with China

http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=8625

Mitchell said:

"Sure, I don't like those "free-tibet" groups and I don't agree with them. But they have been around for a while now. What really surprised me and angried me was the massive anti-china coverage by the western media.

we wouldn't be talking about a conspiracy if it was just couple "free-tibet" or human rights groups. "

What has also been 'around for a while now' is the restrictions of journalists, both national and foreign, in China to do reporting on events. Some of the circular reasoning lately is enough to make one's head spin. To wit, Western media say bad things about China so it was right of the Chinese government to force them all out of the areas of rioting in and around Lhasa, if not to protect them, then so they cannot report 'unglorious' things about China.
The Beijing Olympics is a perfect venue for China to present a modern, developed self to the world. I am convinced that elements within Chinese society were hoping that greater attention would be a compelling factor to create a greater transparency for the benefit of Chinese society as a whole.
'Sunshine is the best disinfectant.'
There are, however, just as many conservative elements that benefit from the control of information, fanning the flames of Chinese jingoism and false sense of inferiority. Some elements from outside China also benefit from this status quo.
We would all be able to engage in a more constructive dialogue if we could more reasonably agree what the real contentions are. For some commenters, however, it's much more satisfying to discuss how despicable it is to snatch a torch from a young woman in a wheelchair; whereas, other people would prefer to know how many 'subversive reporters' are in China's prisons, how many Tibetans have been detained by authorities, and how many people have been listed as 'officially' killed at Donggu monastery, Ganzi, Sichuan.

I agree that in some ways we are in a 'glass half full, half empty' debate, but we must, at the very least, start out by being allowed to look at the same glass.

XniteMan said:

Mitchell,

1. Please don't confuse "lying" with "saying bad things".

2. The problem is not with "Chinese jingoism and false sense of inferiority", it's with the American unilateralism and false sense of superiority. Why do those Americans who don't even know where Tibet is feel confident to make noises? Why do those who still think the 3/14 event was a massacre of Tibetans by CCP believe so firmly that the Chinese are brain-washed? Just because, as Majora Carter said, "because we are America, we can do that"?

I'm all for constructive conversations, but while promoting it, please remember, it's the west that planned and triggered this nonsense.

cc said:

Here is an example of "saying bad things" through "lying".

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jNu3QGKyd-0

Bolelander said:

Tiffany said:
"....Truth is, the Chinese government has killed millions of people,...."
I am assuming you mean millions of Tibetans. Not trying to dispute the case here, just want to know where did you get you facts? From HIS Highness the Dalai Lama? just wondering, you know, I always thought Tibetans was not a populous people. Wouldn't killing millions of Tibetans decimate the population?

Janus said:
"re: signing a treaty = it is done for all eternity:
This particulary ironic. China, of all countries, should be aware of UNEQUAL TREATIES signed UNDER DURESS. "
Well, it may seem signing a treaty under 'duress' is unfair and despicable and even ironic for china. But when in history have you seen a side that won the war, sign a really humane, considerate, 'FAIR' treaty with the loser? And China did honor their treaties, like the returning of HK and Macao in accordance to the treaty's time line by the Imperialist Colonizers. Of course if Tibet manage to wage an independence war and won, a new treaty will be sign on their (Tibet's) own terms: Like USA did to UK.

Bolelander said:

Twofish said:
"Playing the "media game" ...... that the Chinese government is now merely somewhat bad at it rather than completely incompetent. .... you need to learn the rules of the game rather than just complain about it."

A lot of people seem to think PRC Propaganda machine is lousy at it compared to Western Media. I beg to differ. Of late, friends from China and abroad who have more in depth first hand knowledge, are aware of:
instability of many regions, the widening rich poor gap, the water shortages, power failure during Spring Fest, the corruptions, scandals and scandals, the minor riots that went unreported, the angry farmers that got literally beaten off their farm land to make way for foreign corps... etc etc. Tension is seething. Then, Tibet Issue arises. Western Media jump at the opportunity to do some China bashing. PRC Propaganda Machine thinks,
The Bad:-
1/ China bashing by Western media = lose face, annoying, disturbing.
2/ Disturbance of torch relay = lose face, annoyingly disturbing.
3/ Western leaders snubbing Olympics =lose face big time
HOWEVER SO, chance of the actual Olympics get worldwide boycott is slim. Worth taking risk.
The good:-
1/ Western media's selective reporting stir up worldwide support from oversea Chinese.
2/ Western media's bashing, Pro-Tibet NGOs bashing and demonstration and Threats to boycott Olympics stir up ANGER and hurt and frustration of mainland Chinese towards western countries.

The general population's Cynicism towards the PRC Gov rule, their failure to provide basic necessities is suddenly replace by deep sense of patriotism. Western bashing did what the PRC Gov couldn't do for a long time, unite the pretty fragmented, sometimes angry, very dissatisfied mainland Chinese people.
Quote"
In a way, the Tibetan riots have been a golden opportunity for China's sclerotic Communist Party leadership, which has been feeling growing pressure to open up the political system, but which can now ride a wave of unthinking nationalism and push those democratic pressures aside, at least for a time"
End Quote from, Lessons for America from China On Waking Sleeping Giants By DAVE LINDORFF
http://www.counterpunch.org/lindorff04112008.html

In all, Losing face and disturbing Olympics far better than losing control. Let them bash in our interest, CCP thinks gleefully.
DON'T underestimate the CCP's Propaganda Department. They are NOT the stupid brute you paint them to be.

Balboa said:

First and foremost, many congrats to the devils at ZNH for making a 40+ replier... this one being the +.

Now, to my point. All these Torch etc shenanigans are starting to burn my brain... and, to tells ya the truth, I'm now firmly behind the Chinese on this one. To wit:

"As I've said many many times, the issue is fundamentally one of hypocracy and ignorance. From 1492 to the present, European nations grew strong largely by oppressing and colonizing other peoples in other continents. By the 19th century, they were strong enough to impose their power on China, the former principal global power. The Chinese, like anyone else would, resent such incursions. Now, in 2008, the same Europeans indulge in orgies of China-bashing nominally on behalf of the Tibetans. Incredibly, they even do this from the very continents that they so successfully colonized (North America and Australia). I acknowledge and applaud the enlightened ideals with which they decorate their brickbats. I only wish they showed some devotion to those ideals through their actions at home. Their centuries-long theft of Aboriginal and Native American lands is not an act solely of history. It is an ongoing occurrence of theft whose benefits accrue to the colonists on a daily basis. The sheer magnitude of the crime is no excuse for not questioning it or taking measures to reverse it. Yet no such process exists, and the Economist, all the protesters, and all the politicians obviously prefer to blast China instead. This is something like a pack of heroin addicts beating a poor lad for developing a taste for tea."

The above quotation I copied-and-pasted from a very interesting and ongoing web discussion on The Economist (yes, I am a wanker) website, titled "What do Europe-based Chinese Think?"

Fact is, undeniable fact, is that much of the "West", whatever the f-ck that is, is where it is today for the reasons outlined in that posting, and more.

Yes, we've heard and read many times that old argument "The Chinese say, so what if we do this, when you've done it much worse before". Many Westerners reckon that their history doesn't matter in the 21st century. What's done is done, etc.

Well, it f-cking-well does. We (and by that I mean the great fancy concept of the West) have much to answer for, and it matters, still.

Aside from all that sh-t, the Chinese people as well as the government are doing their utmost to put on a decent Olympic Games, show the world that they're a Big Boy again, and why the f-ck not? They are a Big Boy again. So you take these f-cking idiot protesters in London, Paris, San Fran, etc, beating down disabled girls, and the stupid f-cking editors in Western media orgs sanctioning the publication of pictures of Nepalese police beating down on "rabid" monks, while running the caption of "Lhasa Riots", or something so. I would be p!ssed off, p@ranoid, and completely distrustful of everything western if I was Chinese.

If I go through this life without seeing a major world war, I'll be part of the first generation to do so in more than a century.

So human-right off, before I human-right you up the ass!

Zhong Guo, Jia You!

cc said:

Balboa,

The show is not over yet, believe me. It's only starting and you only saw the rehearsal. Plenty of people are grinding their axes for August.

Balboa said:

cc,

Yes, that is exactly what I am worried about. And all the axe-grinding will entirely in vain. All it will do is p!ss everyone off, especially the Chinese hosts. I don't want to see that situation develop. But no doubt, it will.

Yi Ying said:

Nancy Pelosi Succeed To Write Her Name Into Olympic History, With Her HUGE Hypocrisy

Author : Richard Branson

On March 14, 2008

Hundreds of people came out at Lhasa, Tibet. Suddenly, these people act brutally, throwing stones, set up fire on houses, stores, vehicles, and hitting people.

These coordinated brutal attackers are demanding a free Tibet from China. Only in a couple of hours, Tibet is on fire. Rescue forces and policemen are unable to control these rioters.

Less than 100 people or maybe more died before the security forces succeed to control the chaos. Among the victims are an 8 month-old-baby and 4 girls working as shopkeepers, who were burnt to death.

On March 21, 2008 ( 07 DAYS LATER )

Nancy Pelosi, a US House Speaker rush to meet the spiritual leader of Tibet, Dalai Lama, who was accused by China as the planner of the brutal attack. There, Pelosi gave Dalai Lama a moral support, and condemn China who used forces to control the situation.

Then to provoke the world peaceful community, in front of a crowd of thousands Tibetans including monks and schoolchildren, Nancy Pelosi said “If freedom loving people throughout the world do not speak out against China’s oppression in Tibet, we have lost all moral authority to speak on behalf of human rights anywhere in the world”.

Most of media all over the world quickly quoted what she said, exactly the way she has planned. Many western media found that they have no other option than to bias the truth about the Tibet chaos, in order to make it suitable with Pelosi’s statement. Some of them even cut part of the image to mislead public, some used the real picture with mislead information, some even use videos taken from Nepal to mislead the truth.

Several foreigners touring at Tibet when the chaos happened has turn out their voice about media bias, urging people to see the whole picture. But their voice has been turned down by many media, leaving only small room for them.

On March 23, 2008 ( 02 DAYS LATER )

Four US soldiers died by a roadside bomb in Baghdad, making the death toll 4000 since Iraq war. Meanwhile, a British agency estimated that about one million civilians has been died since the war. Mr. Bush quickly show up and offer condolences to the troops family. Nancy Pelosi didn’t even show up. She didn’t even speak out about human rights in Iraq. She doesn’t even send any condolences.

People across the world, including those freedom loving people in America, who expects her to take her huge part to stop Iraq war, are very disappointed. She doesn’t even do something significant at the fifth anniversary of Iraq war at March 20, 2008.

Many people are shocked with her HUGE hypocrisy, when they compare what Pelosi rush to do in Tibet chaos and Iraq war. Facing 4000 deaths on her own side and about one millions civilian death in Iraq, the human-right-police should said something like “If freedom loving people throughout the world do not speak out against Iraq war, we have lost all moral authority to speak on behalf of human rights anywhere in the world”.

Nancy Pelosi has succeed to write her name in Olympic history, with her HUGE hypocrisy. Meanwhile, China will be recorded in the history who try to do the best to hold the Olympic Games. What makes difference is one get respect, the others don’t.

The consequence of her statement had move many freedom loving people throughout the world to attack the Olympic. It started happening when Tibetan protesters disrupt Olympic Flame ceremony on March 25, at Olympia, Greece. Along the way, there will be many protesters who try to disrupt the Olympic, or hold a peaceful demonstration. But the world history will record that all of this peaceful attack can only be related to one person, Nancy Pelosi.

Do the Chinese media as the victim has the courage to publish this article ? Do the western un-censored media has the courage to publish this article ? We will see in the few days.

To conclude the whole article, I found the best quotation at a Hollywood film, starred by Bruce Willis, “Tears of the Sun”. Here is the quotation “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing”.

NOTE : PLS SPREAD THIS ARTICLE ACROSS THE GLOBE…(post it to mailing-list, blogs, emails, newspaper editors, bulletin boards, etc). It will help the American peaceful society to stop the Iraq War. It will help the world to realize that China is only the victim of Nancy Pelosi HUGE Hypocrisy. THANKS.

Charles Liu said:

Paul, here's a simple test:

"If our media is state-sponsored, would it have reported the 2008 Olympic torch relay any differently?"

Amy Goodman of Democracy Now posed this question on our media's pre-Iraq invasion reporting, and her answer was "no".

John Direct said:

The media in the US is only interested in the biggest story no matter its origin or outcome (which they rarely follow)

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