Wednesday, February 23, 2005

News of the Day (February 23)

Europe still snubbing U.S. (and Japan) on Communist China: The Washington Times took note of President Bush’s opposition to the European Union plans to lift its arms embargo on Communist China (see also second item), but also reported Japanese Foreign Minister Nobutaka Machimura supporting the President. Machimura, “in a recent telephone conversation with Javier Solana, secretary-general of the Council of the European Union . . . said lifting the arms ban ‘would seriously affect the security of not only Japan, but also other countries in the East Asian region.’” Such comments are why many, including this quarter and Tom Donnelly of The Daily Standard (Weekly Standard online), are seeing a far stronger friend to the U.S. in Tokyo than in ant European capital. Of course, there was a time when Europe, Britain in particular, was forced to see the Communists for who they really were, as Mike Strobel of the Toronto Sun noted.

Communist Chinese port in Pakistan soon to open, India and U.S. are worried: Pakistan is weeks away from opening a deep-sea port in Gwadar, “near the mouth of the Persian Gulf and some 250 miles from the Strait of Hormuz” (Cybercast News), built largely with funds from its ally – Communist China. The port “will give China a crucial economic and strategic foothold in the Arabian Sea” and as such “has set off alarm bells in the U.S., where China's military buildup is warily watched; and in India, a major Asian rival to China and a longstanding foe of Pakistan.”

Communist China to join fight against money laundering (try not to laugh): Of course, the Communists will mainly focus on “domestic corruption and economic crimes” (Epoch Times), not “international efforts to prevent terrorist organizations from amassing funds” – e.g., al Qaeda, which Communist China helped launder money.

Liaoning Vice Governor bounced over mining disaster: A mining explosion that killed 214 workers has led panicked Communists to suspend Liaoning Vice Governor Liu Guoqiang. Liu “was in overall control of industrial safety in Fuxin” (BBC), where the explosion took place. However, as noted yesterday (fifth item), the miners are facing bigger problems that the Communists have no intention of fixing.

Zhao mourner sues Communists over subsequent imprisonment: Lin Mu former aid to reformist General Secretary Hu Yaobang (forced out in 1987, died in 1989) and spokesman for the Funeral Arrangement Committee for Mr. Zhao Ziyang is suing the Xi'an City Public Security Bureau for imprisoning him for 15 days after he “participated in the activities commemorating Zhao Ziyang, on January 17, 2005” (Epoch Times).

Justice Department investigating Anti-Falun Gong hotel: “During an October 2002 visit to Houston by Chinese president Jiang Zemin, 72 Falun Gong practitioners were denied accommodations in the Homestead hotel next door to where Jiang was staying” (Epoch Times). That earned Homestead a Justice Department probe into its practices.

National Review’s Beijing Blogger: This hurts, because I’m apparently one of the few anti-Communists who still holds National Review in high regard (despite their support for PNTR), but National Review Online has added a “Beltway Buzz” blog written by Eric Pfeiffer. Pfeiffer also writes on occasion for the Communist-run Beijing Review, and if this column is any indication, this was a disastrous move by NRO.

The State of the Workers in the Workers’ State: The Epoch Times recounts the tale of the Zhao Zhi and his wife Guo Xiuying, who were forcibly moved in Tianjin. Guo – who had her electrocardiogram and intravenous unit disconnected – did not survive the ordeal.

Woe Canada! John Crosbie, former Canadian Cabinet Minister and current Toronto Sun columnist, rips Prime Minister Paul Martin for his pathetic visit to Communist China (sixth and seventh items) and has high praise for opposition MP Jason Kenney, who visited Zhao Ziyang’s home to pay his respects.

On the North Korean refugees: Claudia Rosette, Wall Street Journal, rips the United Nations Human Rights Commission for turning its back on the hundreds of thousands fleeing Stalinist North Korea and forced to live as nonpersons in Communist China, which sends back any refugee it finds despite the near-certain death that awaits in SNK.

Speaking of Stalinist North Korea, the U.S. is more than willing to restart the six-party talks in its nuclear weapons program, despite the fact that they have led to no movement by the Stalinists themselves. Reports: CNN, BBC

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