State media lashes out at Chen and the US

Posted: May 4, 2012 in Politics
Tags: , ,

A few days ago I looked at the two options the Party’s PR apparatus had in responding to the Chen Guangcheng situation:

  1. Show restraint. Acknowledge, but downplay the story as best it can until it blows over. Perhaps even allow a few commentaries that aren’t hyper-critical of the event to show that the leadership isn’t so insecure.
  2. Actively retaliate with the full extent of police and media power.

It’s now become pretty apparent that they learned nothing from The Liu Xiaobo Nobel PR debacle and have decided to go all in on option 2.

Many of Chen’s extended family and rescuers are still unaccounted for, have been interrogated, beaten, or been placed under soft detention. And several journalists have been blocked from reporting.

Foreign Ministry Spokesman Liu Weimin whipped out the one-size fits all response to international disputes saying, “The US move is an interference in China’s internal affairs.”

The Chinese media is now on the offensive as well, using pretty much every official cliche you can imagine for responding to dissent and foreign involvement in China.  Here’s a few rough translations from recent Chinese media commentaries:

Beijing Daily:

Chen Guangcheng has become a tool and a pawn of the U.S. politicians to discredit China.

Chen doesn’t represent the interests of the majority of people, just the interests of his boss: The Western Anti-China forces.

Chen has been made famous and labeled as a “hero” and a “freedom fighter” by the US and western media – An anti-society, anti-establishment figure.

Paraphrase [kind of an awkward translation]: Chen and the people supporting him are very naïve to think they can use this event to interfere with and blackmail China. It won’t get any response from the 1.3 billion Chinese people, who are mature enough to realize it’s a conspiracy.

Just think if other countries’ embassies became highly interested in the “Occupy Wall Street” movement, giving support to the people to revolt and reinvent the image of America. How would the US respond?

Ambassador Locke, since taking office, has used his duties to strain relations between China and the US instead of being devoted to the development of Sino-US relations. He rode economy class on his plane ride, he carried his bags himself, and used coupons to buy coffee – all as a show. Then he monitored Beijing air quality and published readings at the embassy, creating debate in Beijing city administration. Now he dares to bring Chen – a Chinese citizen – into the US embassy. These things are not in line with Locke’s role as an ambassador, but are meant to stir up contradictions in the whirlpool and it’s very obvious what motive is behind his behavior. [Loosely paraphrased from Chinese parable]: This farce directed by the US embassy gives a lesson to Chinese citizens: The US has ill intentions toward China.

Beijing News:

Diplomats from foreign governments stationed in other countries have the obligation to comply with the laws and respect the culture of the host country. The Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations does not give ambassadors the right to intervene in domestic issues and doesn’t give them “extraterritoriality” to flagrantly interfere in the internal affairs of other countries.

Since World War II, marks of colonial rule like “extraterritoriality” and “consular jurisdiction” have been thrown in the trash bin of history.

When exploring the new power between China and the United States, one cannot simply use the Cold War mentality to look at how to deal with the differences between the two countries.

Beijing Youth Daily:

Chen Guangcheng left the US embassy in China on May 2nd, Ambassador Locke sent him to the hospital in person, pushing the wheelchair under the foreign media’s spotlight. He went beyond his duties as an American ambassador. Under normal circumstances it’s understandable that American officials give help to ordinary Chinese citizens, but Locke used American values to judge Chinese society and forced China to accept American values. His actions were a “show” and “performance” to attract attention, which is typical Western politician behavior. It’s impulsive and hypocritical. It’s not only offensive to Chinese, but the American media also criticizes such behavior.

In recent years, human rights has been relegated to a very secondary position in Sino-US relations. The era in which the US finds fault with China’s human rights should belong to the past. We are willing to make concessions to the relationship with sincerity and goodwill to maintain the overall situation of Sino-US relations. Any behavior that damages the overall situation of Sino-US relations has no future.

Beijing Times

The US is already stretched too wide and too thin in other countries, but it still shows too much concern about Chinese domestic issues. Under the flag of humanitarianism it interferes with other countries’ issues showing its intention of being the master of the world. This kind of behavior totally betrays international law and the principle of non-interference. But if other countries interfere with American internal affairs then the US will retaliate. This kind of logic is pure hegemonic logic.

The countries who have such logic always deliberately look for some tools to flaunt their own rights and the mistakes of others. In this case Chen Guangcheng is their new tool. When he was at the US embassy, he couldn’t find justice but only found himself being used by the US, which left him only frustration and disappointment. Any country during the period of transition and reform will face a lot of conflicts and contradictions. But during the past 30 years after Reform & Opening Up, China has not passed on its problems or contradictions to other countries, but rather it solved a lot of problems on its own and achieved great accomplishments and progress. But some individuals and countries with ulterior motives intend to exaggerate Chinese domestic contradictions in an attempt to discredit China. But this one of the contradictions that Chinese can solve on its own as it did in previous years without the need of others to intervene.

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Comments
  1. […] You know who else is criticizing the United States over its handling of Chen Guangcheng? Oh, that’s right, these party-toeing louses (sampled heavily from Eric Fish of Sinostand): […]

  2. foarp says:

    Unbelievable – none of them can identify a single concrete thing that Chen has done wrong.

  3. […] it’s within his intention or not, Chen lost his own ability to speak.Eric Fish translated highlights from other articles at his Sinostand blog, while David Bandurski analysed the “editorial onslaught”. From China Media Project:The […]

  4. […] Fish translated highlights from other articles at his Sinostand blog, while David Bandurski analysed the “editorial onslaught”. From China Media Project: The […]

  5. […] Fish translated highlights from other articles at his Sinostand blog, while David Bandurski analysed the “editorial onslaught”. From China Media Project: The […]

  6. alsharp1 says:

    When Sinostand speculated what the official response might be a couple of posts back, I left this comment:

    ‘The fact that Chen has hot-footed it to the US embassy is a very provocative statement, but I have suspicions that the Party cannot play the thin-skinned nationalism card with as much resonance as it used to be able to. It might just be the impression I’ve got from the Chinese people I know, and perhaps unrepresentative comments I’ve seen translated on ChinaSMACK taking potshots at corrupt officials and censorship…but I get the distinct feeling that the average Zhou is a lot less willing to swallow whatever the propaganda machine tells him these days’

    To judge from this article (http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/asia_pacific/chinese-newspaper-apologizes-for-anti-chen-anti-us-editorial/2012/05/05/gIQAXkNu2T_story.html), I was dead right! Gordon Chang could learn a thing or two from my razor-sharp analysis!

    Seriously though, I’m quite taken aback — and no little encouraged — at the strength of the netizen response, which has been to pour scorn unreservedly on the party line. It’s almost enough to make you feel there’s hope for this country after all…

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