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Monday, October 11, 2010

China’s behaviour is unacceptable

Deccan Chronicle: Beijing finds itself incapable of comprehending that the committee that awards the Nobel Prize is unconnected with the Norwegian government.

Currently signs of peaceful nationalist assertions in Xinjiang and Tibet have been routinely quashed by the Chinese authorities with brute force. Even the Falun Gong, a spiritual movement, has been hounded as the Party fears it might grow into a rival centre of power. Over the decades, these regions have seen a systematic effort by Beijing to change the population mix through the expedient of large-scale settlements of the majority Han people in a move to convert ethnic majorities into minorities in their own native space. A pity the world has witnessed these developments without perturbation.

The heart of the problem is that China has failed to modernise its political system. That would require it to democratise, to listen to its own people, and to moderate, modify and eventually jettison the one-party dictatorship it runs underpinned by its massive military machine. None of this is winning hearts and minds anywhere, including inside China itself. The Chinese Communist Party is so jumpy it seeks to bring the house down with clamorous protests at the first hint of dissident activity.Those asking questions within the Party apparatus are struck down or sent for “rectification”.

The way things are, is there any surprise in the fact that Beijing’s closest allies are countries such as Pakistan and North Korea, which revel in being bad boys of the world system and are considered by many internationally as being beyond the pale? The language employed by Beijing in reaction to the Nobel award to Mr Liu is several shades worse than the one used by the Iranian clerics in denouncing the Nobel Peace Prize to Shirin Ebadi in 2003. This is no advertisement for a power that seeks to play a role on the world stage. More...

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