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Caixin: Who Is the “Big Tiger” That the CCDI Talked About?

On its own website on February 25, 2015, the CCP’s Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) published an article titled, "Problems with the Lifestyle of the Qing Dynasty’s ‘Naked Official’ Prince Qing." The article stated that Prince Qing (庆亲王) was the culprit who, in the late Qing Dynasty, created an extensive corrupt environment. He took huge bribes, sold official positions for money, put all his money in foreign banks, and kept bribing the actual ruler Empress Dowager Cixi. The whole nation followed his example. CCDI didn’t say who, in its eyes, todays "Prince Qing" is.

The term "Naked Official" (裸官, sometimes written as "luo guan" based on its Chinese pronunciation) used in the article refers to officials who save their money overseas and may also have their family members migrate overseas, while only they themselves remain in China at their official post. The article stated that Prince Qing was a "naked official."

On March 24, 2015, Caixin, which is said to have a close relationship with Wang Qishan the head of the CCDI, published an article in English titled, "Who Is Prince Qing?" This article stated that Zeng Qinghong is most likely the "Prince Qing" that CCDI mentioned in its article. It stated, "Who is the Prince Qing of the current anti-corruption campaign? Speculation is rife that Zeng Qinghong, former vice president and close adviser to ex-president Jiang Zemin, fits the bill, especially because his name contains the same character for Qing."

It also stated that back then Cixi "relied more on blood lineage" to rule the country. "Today the princelings tout their ‘red gene’ to justify their entitlement to power, status and wealth. The parallel does not escape notice." Again, this indicates that Zeng Qinghong, who is a princeling, fits the bill well.

The interpretation of some media was that Empress Dowager Cixi stood for Jiang Zemin.

Caixin didn’t publish a Chinese version of this article.

1. CCDI Website, February 25, 2015
2. Caixin Online, March 24, 2015
3. Eurasia Review, March 25, 2015