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Beijing Uses Force to Crack Down on Uyghur Protesters

Nearly 10,000 ethnic Uyghur protesters gathered in front of the Urumqi City government, Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region on Sunday, July 5. The government responded with riot police and tanks, using machine guns to kill and injure thousands. The protest spread to Kashgar, the second-largest city in Xinjiang. The government has sent 30,000 riot police to major cities in Xinjiang.

The Chinese government reported 140 deaths and 828 injuries on July 6; on July 7, it revised the numbers to 156 dead and 1080 injured. The spokesperson of the World Uyghur Congress said the true numbers are much higher and that most victims are Uyghurs killed by gun fire. He also accused the Chinese government of attempting to distort the conflict between the ethnic Uyghurs and Beijing as a conflict between Uyghurs and the Han people.

After taking control of the city, the Chinese government opened Urumqi to foreign reporters, intending to show the Uyghur mobs and Han victims. More than 100 reporters have gone to Urumqi since July 6. An official tour backfired when journalists crossed the street to talk to Uyghurs. Beijing’s one-sided story stirred up so much animosity toward the Han people that the rioting constinued on July 7.

The originally Uyghur protest was held to express dissatisfaction with the government’s improper handling of the June 26 incident at a toy factory in Shaoguan City, Guangdong Provice. A disgruntled, unemployed worker had started a false rumor on-line that six males from Xinjiang had sexually assaulted two girls at the toy factory. Uyghur workers were accused of the raping Han workers, which led to a bloody clash between the Uyghur and Han workers, causing 79 Uyghur injuries and 2 Uyghur deaths.

[1] Epoch Times, July 7, 2009
[2] BBC Chinese, July 7, 2009
[3] Deutsche Welle, July 7, 2009,,4462185,00.html
[4] BBC Chinese, June 27, 2009

Global Times: U.S. Has a Different Kind of Military Parade

To justify the upcoming large-scale military parade on October 1, 2009, the 60th anniversary of the Chinese Communist regime, Global Times published the article, “U.S. Has a Different Kind of ‘Military Parade." The article argued that there are three reasons for the U.S. not have a large military parade to celebrate its national day. One, the U.S. is very concerned about the military’s involvement in domestic politics so it limits the military’s influence in domestic politics and social activities. Two, the U.S. would rather demonstrate its power via real war than a military parade. “Three, U.S. has a unique way of expressing patriotism from other nations.” Namely, “On major holidays, especially Independence Day and Pearl Harbor Day, all levels of the government, including the Federal government, State, County, City, and Town will hold military parades and the participants are retired veterans.” Besides, on all major holidays, the military will participate in the public parades. That’s the U.S.’s own kind of “military parade.” 

Source: Global Times, June 22, 2009

Washington Times: The U.S. Should Confront China’s Duplicity

The Washington Times published an article by James Lyons, a retired U.S. Navy Admiral, and former commander in chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, stating that “the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has developed an extremely devious strategy to challenge U.S. strategic interest not only in the Western Pacific, but also globally.” China has built networks with countries such as North Korea, Burma, Iran, Sudan, Venezuela and Yemen – to mention but a few – all of which are hostile to the United States and other democracies. China is behind all of North Korea’s moves. China has been supplying nuclear technologies to other countries, and China has been using Iran as a proxy to support the Taliban, where China provides weapons and ammunition to Iran, which are then passed to Shi’ite militias and the Taliban. Lyons argued that the U.S. should tell China to reverse its nuclear and missile proliferation policy and should also take other measures to confront China’s duplicity.

Source: Washington Times, June 21, 2009

Outlook: The Balance between Defending the National Interest and Maintaining Area Stability

Outlook published an article stating that China should seek to highly unify its strategies of defending the national interest while maintaining area stability when dealing with its neighboring countries.

It listed China’s strategic security environment and development opportunities as: China is adjacent to many counties, some of which are large countries and many of which have nuclear weapons; in the ocean, China is surrounded by several countries along the first island chain and the second island chain; neighboring countries and regions are concerned about China’s rise; and western countries set up international rules on ocean rights that do not favor the developing countries.

“Equally important, the first twenty years of the 21st century is the strategic opportunity era for China. That means that China needs to seek at least twenty years of having a peaceful environment to develop and strengthen itself, to establish its competitive advantage in the areas of the economy, politics, culture, diplomacy, and the military. Then China can better defend its own interests.”

Source: Outlook, June 22, 2009

Ming Pao: China’s Tax and Spending Dilemma

Hong Kong based Ming Pao reported on June 28 that the latest Chinese statistics showed the government has less income from tax but is spending more. The government’s official response is to reduce spending on car purchases, receptions, officials’ visits (tours) of other countries, and construction of government buildings. However, given the massive corruption in China, it is impossible to control the government’s spending. The other option is to increase taxes, but that also presents big challenges, as the government promised the public that it would reduce the tax burden to stimulate the economy’s growth. Therefore, the government is trapped.

Source: Ming Pao, June 28, 2009

Nanfang Weekends: Revamp China Nuclear War Strategy, Because U.S. and Russia Are “Attack First”

Nanfang Weekends published several articles arguing that China should change its strategy of using nuclear weapons. It reported that China is surrounded by “Nuclear Superpowers” and “Nuclear Small Powers.” These countries have encircled China with a total of 22,500 nuclear war heads. China’s military strategic experts have a consensus on war tactics once a nuclear war starts, but there have been many debates over China’s overall nuclear weapons strategy. China’s current position, as stated in the 2008 China Defense White Book, is “limited retaliation.” But as other nuclear superpowers keep adjusting their nuclear war strategy, for example, both the U.S. and Russia’s strategies are “attack first” now, China should reassess its strategy.

Source: Nanfang Weekends, June 17, 2009