Wo Shi Laowai – Wo Pa Shui

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Richard Writes…

Posted by MyLaowai on Friday, May 25, 2007

I just read this wonderful post by Richard Spencer, certainly one of the better journalists in China. If I may quote from it:

Some might say that journalists shouldn’t take a stand. Perhaps they are right. But I can tell you that on these things it is hard to pretend we don’t have attitudes: The Dalai Lama: we are sympathetic; the Tibetans have had, and continue to have, a rough time.

Taiwan: we don’t care much whether Taiwan is or is not a part of China. But we think it’s up to the people who live there, not missile batteries on the coast of Fujian.

The East Turkestan Islamic Movement: we are not at all sure this exists any more. If it does, we don’t support terrorism, but as with Taiwan, we think the Uighurs have had a rough time, and are sympathetic to them as a people, at least.

Democracy movements: need you ask? We understand the Chinese desire for caution, and to avoid destablising, overnight change. But at the end of the day – yes, we are in favour. As Margaret Beckett said the other day, a society in which the people are not granted the levers of political change is not stable in any sense we understand.

Falun gong: a bit crazy, and they often talk nonsense (too many of their methods of argument, and their understanding of the word proof, seem to resemble the Chinese Communist Party Propaganda Department’s). But do they deserve in any way what’s happened to them? No.
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Many, many “friends of China” – businessmen and diplomats who say the politically correct thing in public – have the same views in private, even those from “friendly” Asian countries whom Beijing thinks it has won over with its “soft power”.

Kudos to you, Mr Spencer.

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One Response to “Richard Writes…”

  1. Eric D said

    “The East Turkestan Islamic Movement: we are not at all sure this exists any more. If it does, we don’t support terrorism, but as with Taiwan, we think the Uighurs have had a rough time, and are sympathetic to them as a people, at least.”

    As with Taiwan? Thought it was Tibet.

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