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Beijing Tried to Censor American Political Science Review

Radio Free Asia recently reported on how the Chinese authorities attempted to impose censorship over the Cambridge University Press. First they requested the removal of contents from The China Quarterly and the Journal of Asian Studies (http://chinascope.org/archives/13070). Beijing is also reported to have requested that Cambridge University Press remove articles from the American Political Science Review. The publisher rejected the request.

American Political Science Review is the highest-ranked academic publication on Political Science in the U.S. The Chinese government’s censorship of this journal shows that Beijing’s political censorship over academic publications has expanded.”

Political Science Professor Xia Ming of the City University of New York pointed out that China’s oversight of overseas academic publications has evolved in three stages.

Stage one: Only focus on Chinese content. Articles written in English can be published.

Stage two: Regardless of whether they are written in English or Chinese, an article’s subject matter cannot touch certain areas, such as Falun Gong, the Cultural Revolution, Tibet, Xinjiang, the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) history, and the military.

Stage three: Even if the publication is not about China studies and does not touch the “sensitive” topics, if it is about universal values, democracy, the rule of law, and other such topics, it is subject to censorship.

“Beijing will even censor a purely academic publication (such as the American Political Science Review that does not have a strong political position regarding China). It is because the Chinese government does not want the public and academia in China to access academic articles discussing the pros and cons of different political systems in order to prevent people from developing doubts about the legitimacy of the CCP regime.”

Source: Radio Free Asia, September 10, 2017
http://www.rfa.org/mandarin/yataibaodao/meiti/hc-09102017141334.html

Apple Daily: Why Xi Jinping Is Cleansing the Princelings?

Apply Daily published a commentary stating that Xi Jinping has started to remove princelings {descendants of prominent and influential senior Chinese Communist Party (CCP) officials} from power. A discussion of the contents of the commentary follows.

“The princelings are rare to see among the newly elected representatives of the Communist Party’s 19th National Congress. They are not only rare in the civil section and state-owned enterprises, but also in the military. Several high-profile princelings in the military have either retired or been pushed aside, including Mao Xinyu (grandson of former CCP head Mao Zedong), Liu Yuan (son of former President Liu Shaoqi), Liu Xiaojiang (son-in-law of former CCP General Secretary Hu Yaobang), Zhang Haiyang (son of former Central Military Commission Vice Chairman Zhang Zhen), Liu Yazhou (son-in-law of former President Li Xiannian), Zhu Heping (grandson of former Marshall Zhu De).”

“Obviously this is Xi’s arrangement.”

The article went on to explain that the princelings, many of whom appear to have a high-profile civilian or military rank, are normally not in the key posts. Also, they have been split among many smaller groups due to the CCP’s intense in-fighting, whether among themselves or inherited from their parents.

They are likely to interfere in the administration’s policies. In 2005, Zhu De’s grandson Zhu Chenghu claimed that, if the U.S. were to interfere in China-Taiwan affairs, then  China “is prepared to sacrifice all cities on the east side of Xi’an” to have a nuclear war with the U.S. Another grandson of Zhu De, Zhu Heping, stated that China may have a military fight with Japan to gain the control of the Senkaku Islands (called the Diaoyudao Islands in China).

While the princelings may not have contributed big achievements, they can create big trouble for Xi Jinping due to their political status and their influence over the business world. Therefore, Xi has had to restrict them.

Source: Apple Daily, September 15, 2017
http://hk.apple.nextmedia.com/news/art/20170915/20153339

Xi Jinping on Traditional Chinese Culture: Don’t Lose It

Since Xi Jinping assumed power, he has mentioned and promoted traditional Chinese culture in a number of places. This is a deviation from the Communist Party’s approach which in the past has been to denounce, suppress, and even attempt the complete destruction of traditional Chinese culture.

Recently, Chinese Central Television (CCTV) broadcasted a six episode CCTV program, The Diplomacy of a Big Country. The first episode quoted Xi’s desire to keep traditional Chinese Culture.

“Xi Jinping: (Since) I became the President of the country, a number of retired officials have said to me, ‘What should the Chinese leader do? It is not to lose China’s 5,000 years of culture and civilization. It should also be passed down in your hands.’”

Source: CCTV, August 28, 2017
http://m.news.cctv.com/2017/08/28/ARTIVzGmfqhlkUslnKqCsVFB170828.shtml

Central Military Commission Has Changed the Leadership in Two-Thirds of Its Organs

Two years ago, Xi Jinping restructured the Central Military Commission (CMC) by putting 15 organs under it . Since then, the top leaders of 10 organs have been changed. The two most recent appointments are Qin Shengxiang (秦生祥), former Director of the General Office of the CMC, who was appointed as the Political Commissar of the Navy and Song Puxuan (宋普选) the former Commander of the Northern Theater, who replaced Zhao Keshi (赵克石) as the head of the CMC Logistic Support Department. {Editor’s note: In the PLA system, there are two top officials per unit, one is the Commander (or Minister or Director) and one is the Political Commissar. Changes in either position means that Organ had a leadership change.}

The following are the heads of the 15 organs:

General Office: Director replacement to be announced
Joint Staff Department: Joint Chief of Staff Li Zuocheng (李作成) (New)
Political Work Department: Director Miao Hua (苗华) (New)
Logistic Support Department: Minister Song Puxuan (宋普选) (New); Political Commissar Zhang Shuguo (张书国)
Equipment Development Department: Minister Zhang Youxia (张又侠) (Unchanged); Political Commissar An Zhaoqing (安兆庆) (New)
Training and Administration Department: Minister Li Huohui (黎火辉) (New); Political Commissar replacement to be announced
National Defense Mobilization Department: Minister Sheng Bin (盛斌) (Unchanged); Political Commissar replacement to be announced
Discipline Inspection Commission: Zhang Shengmin (张升民) (New)
Politics and Law Commission: Li Xiaofeng (李晓峰) (Unchanged)
Science and Technology Commission: Liu Guozhi (刘国治) (Unchanged)
Office for Strategic Planning: Wang Huiqing (王辉青) (Unchanged)
Office for Reform and Organizational Structure: Replacement to be announced
Office for International Military Cooperation: Hu Changming (胡昌明) (New)
Audit Office: Guo Chunfu (郭春富) (Unchanged)
Agency for Offices Administration: Liu Zhiming (刘志明) (Unchanged)

Source: 163.com, September 13, 2017
http://news.163.com/17/0913/16/CU7R9DSE0001899N.html

Chinese General Comments on U.S. Pacific Commander Admiral Harry B. Harris, Jr.

At the time of the USS John S McCain’s collision with a non-military vessel near Singapore on August 21, the “Defense Times” program on China News Radio (CNR) interviewed Jin Yinan, a People’s Liberation Army (PLA) General.

Jin Yinan commented on Admiral Harry B. Harris, Jr., Commander of the U.S. Pacific Command:

“I think all the soldiers around the world have a common trait: do well on you own duties; train well; and prepare well for war.  However, since Harris became the Commander of the Pacific Command, he has been indulging himself in politics. He has been eager to make (political) statements. That’s a big taboo. It means the military is interfering in political affairs. His interest is not on training or management, but rather on showing-off. (He) uses the U.S. power to protect the interests of his mother country – Japan (Editor’s note: Harris is the first Asian American to achieve the rank of Admiral in the U.S. Navy, and the highest-ranking Japanese American). Of course he still needs to protect the interest of his father’s country – the U.S. Harris is a completely political soldier. He has been keen on attending large international conferences and keen on making tough statements at those meetings. Yet he has ignored military management and training. So the time when he serves as the Commander of the Pacific Command is the time that the Pacific Command has the most problems.”

Source: PLA Website, August 24, 2017
http://www.81.cn/mjjt/2017-08/24/content_7729238.htm

Xinhua and Caixin Made Different Reports on Trump’s Speech

Two Chinese media, Xinhua and Caixin reported with much different attitudes on Trump’s speech made in Phoenix on August 22. The Chinese Communist Party Propaganda Department heavily controls Xinhua. It is the traditional mouthpiece of the state. Caixin is a relatively new media, commonly believed to have a close connection to Wang Qishan.

Xinhua Report: A Split America – Trump’s Speech at a Gathering Caused Controversy

In his near 80-minute speech, Trump spent about half of his time raging at the media. He defended his position on the violent incident in Charlottesville.  …

When Trump scoffed at the media, the audience booed. His supporters shouted, “CNN sucks!” The TV news reporter while shaking his head and sighing said, “This is the President we elected.”

Later Trump moved to immigration, the border wall and NAFTA. …

About 4,500 people said on Facebook that they participated in the protest event next to Trump’s gathering. Over 3,000 more people said that they participated in the anti-Trump event that a local immigration rights group had organized in downtown Phoenix.

After the gathering, the anti-Trump protesters clashed with the police. Police used tear gas on the protesters and smoke was everywhere. At least three protesters were arrested. No injuries were reported.

Afterwards, some U.S. media commented that Trump’s speech, “increased the split in American society.”

Caixin Report: “Trump Criticized the Media for Quoting Him out of Context and Threatened to Shut down the Government if Congress Does not Fund the Border Wall”

On August 22, Trump countered the external criticism (of his position on the Charlottesville clash) and criticized the media for quoting him out of context.

Trump said, “It’s time to expose the crooked media’s deceptions and to challenge the media for their role in fomenting divisions.” “(A)nd yes, by the way, they are trying to take away our history and our heritage. You see that.”

Trump took out a few (copies of) his statements on Charlottesville’s violence incident and criticized the media for quoting him out of context.

“These are truly dishonest people. It’s not all of them. Not all of them. You have some very good reporters. You have some very fair journalists, but for the most part, honestly, these are really, really dishonest people, and they’re bad people. I really think they don’t like our country.”

While he made those statements, the audience booed at and shouted at the reporter area, “CNN sucks! CNN sucks!” About 19 thousand people participated in the gathering. Many of them waved the banners of “Drain the Swamp,” “Make America Great Again,” and “Women Supporting Trump.”

Trump said that the media ignored his statement on unity. “Just like they don’t want to report that I spoke out forcefully against hatred, bigotry and violence and strongly condemned the neo-Nazis, the White Supremacists, and the KKK.” …

Arizona is one of the states that strongly supported Trump during the Presidential election. A few hundred people gathered to protest Trump outside the rally. Phoenix’s Mayor, Greg Stanton, a Democrat, had asked the White House to cancel the gathering and warned about potential violence. However, in reality, the pro- and anti-Trump people didn’t have a direct confrontation that day.

Sources:
1. Xinhua, August 23, 2017
http://news.xinhuanet.com/world/2017-08/23/c_1121532170.htm
2. Caixin, August 24, 2017
http://international.caixin.com/2017-08-24/101134637.html
3. Time, August 23, 2017
http://time.com/4912055/donald-trump-phoenix-arizona-transcript/

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