Monday, April 11, 2005

News of the Day (April 11)

U.S. troubled about Communist military buildup: The state of Communist China’s military buildup is setting off alarm bells in Washington. Of particular worry is the Communist creation of a force that is now capable of attacking Taiwan, and “could now defeat Taiwan before America could arrive at the scene” to help defend the island democracy (New York Times via International Herald Tribune).

Vote on currency-corrective tariff “no later than July”: Mark the calendars; the leaders of the Senate have agreed to a vote “no later than July on legislation that would slap across-the-board tariffs on imports of Chinese goods unless China agrees to revalue its currency” (Financial Times, UK). It should be noted that Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid was one of the very few Senators who opposed PNTR with the Communists.

Japanese Embassy in Communist China attacked: Communist Chinese police – who can come find and arrest individual protestors in Tiananmen Square in a matter of seconds – somehow managed to miss a group of 10,000 marchers in the capital city who “smashed windows of a Japanese restaurant”, “hurled bottles at a Japanese bank”, and “threw rocks and bottles and shouted abuse at the residence of the Japanese ambassador to Beijing” (BBC). The cadres were also supposedly caught flat footed during a march in Guangzhou at roughly 3,000 during which “some windows in the consulate were broken” (BBC). To be fair, the BBC didn’t buy it, and neither did Cybercast News, which noted the violent protests were “widely regarded as government-condoned.” Japan quickly demanded an apology for the violence (BBC, Financial Times). Communist China responded by saying it was all Japan’s fault due its World War II atrocities (BBC, CNN).

The supposed spark for this was the approval in Japan of a history textbook that downplays the aforementioned outrages of Japan’s past (CNN). Communist China, whose use of rampant nationalism was laughably euphemized by Time Asia’s Hannah Beech (“Chinese leaders, too, are prone to Japan-baiting to garner popular support”), obviously saw a chance to score some bread-and-circuses points against the entire Japanese nation. There is only one problem – Japanese themselves have criticized the book. The editors of Asahi Shimbun (via Washington Times) ripped it for “its consistent attempt to portray Japan's modern and contemporary history, which has bright and dark sides, in the most self-serving light.” Don’t expect the cadres to highlight that reaction.

Two anti-pollution protestors killed in police response: Meanwhile, a group protesting pollution from a Zhejiang chemical factory got a reminder of how an unauthorized protest is treated: “two elderly women protestors were killed in the police action” (BBC).

Communist China and India sign “strategic partnership”: The Communist charm offensive on India made great strides as Premier Wen Jiabao signed “an agreement in Delhi aimed at resolving a long-running dispute over their Himalayan border” (BBC). The agreement was billed as a “strategic partnership” (United Press International via Washington Times), despite the fact that nothing was actually resolved. Still, the deal was a sign that India can fall for the same “engagement” foolishness that clouds most of Washington. Wen later proposed bilateral cooperation in information technology: “Combined, we can take the leadership position in the world” (Newsmax). However, such “cooperation” could take India to the cleaners, as Aravind Adiga (Time Asia) noted. As for the U.S., which is pushing to make India a major world power, a discussion with the world’s largest democracy about Communist China’s threat to the free world would be in order. Unfortunately, too few people in Washington can see that threat themselves.

Taiwan bans two Communist journalists: Citing “a distorted image of Taiwan” (BBC) and “a news blackout on Taiwan,” the island democracy kicked out two Communist-run media organizations: the Xinhua News Agency and People’s Daily newspaper. The “pan-blue” opposition, which has continually tried to cozy up to the Communists despite losing millions of votes over it, ripped the move as “damaging to cross-straits relations.”

Rover doesn’t appeal to Communist China anymore: Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation called any possibility of a resurrection of its de facto buyout British automaker Rover (fifth item) “highly unlikely” (BBC).

Catholics in Communist China being “watched”: Roman Catholics in Communist China who remain loyal to the Vatican rather than the Communist-run copy of their faith “have been under surveillance since news broke of Pope John Paul II's declining health and subsequent death” (Catholic News Service). A number of priests are already under arrest (lead item, second item).

Commission details Communist campaign against NTDTV: The Congressional-Executive Commission on China has released a detailed account of “occasions when the Chinese government pressured satellite companies to back out of deals with NTDTV” (Epoch Times), including Eutelsat, which reneged on its contract with the Chinese language anti-Communist television network earlier this month (sixth item).

Resignations pass 750,000: Included among these ex-Communists are more than 30 graduates from Jiaotong University (Epoch Times).

Qing Ming events: In Sydney, Australia, the day in remembrance of the departed (April 5) was marked with a rally “to commemorate the victims of Chinese Communist Party tyranny.” Xin Fei from the Epoch Times, who also covered the Sydney rally, spoke to the daughter of Zhao Ziyang, the late Communist General Secretary who was fired and put under house arrest for the last fifteen-and-a-half years of his life for refusing to support the Tiananmen Square massacre of 1989.

On Communist China and the Vatican: Matthew Forney, Time Asia, has a piece on the two Catholic Churches in Communist China, but fails to examine the biggest negative repercussion of any future Vatican-Zhongnanhai deal: the loss of a major symbolic ally for Taiwan. George Wehrfritz and Katharina Hesse, Newsweek, makes the same mistake.

Commentary: Yours truly has an Epoch Times column on the implications of the Communists’ plans to invade Taiwan by 2012 (the typo in the first paragraph is mine, too). Charles R. Smith, Newsmax, calls for a ban on all Communist military-owned business in the United States. The Federation for a Democratic China (via Epoch Times) rips Eutelsat for its aforementioned cancellation of its contract with NTDTV. Danzi, also in the Epoch Times, examines the sickening sales of newborn children in Communist China blames the Communist Party for creating “uncaring abnormal human behavior.” Arnold Beichman, Washington Times, laments the rampant counterfeiting in Communist China, and the support the cadres continue to give to it.

Stalinist North Korea broadcasts mass for Pope John Paul II: In a sign Kim Jong-il is clearly improving his propaganda, Stalinist North Korea allowed a mass for the late Pope John Paul II to be “filmed by a US company and shown on South Korean television” (BBC). The “mass” was quickly derided as a Stalinist ruse.

SNK military head says more nuclear weapons are on the way: Kim Yong-Chun, chief of the General Staff of SNK’s military announced the regime would “bolster its self-defensive nuclear deterrent” in light of what he called America’s “hostile policy” against the Stalinists (Agence France Presse via Spacewar).

Praise for Bolton’s tough talk on Kim Jong-il: As United Nations Ambassador-designate John Bolton goes before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee for his nomination hearings, he won praise from columnist Paul Greenberg (Washington Times) for his tough words about Stalinist-in-chief Kim Jong-il: “There has seldom been a more accurate appraisal of North Korea's beloved leader offered by an American diplomat.”

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