Monday, December 08, 2008

The pressure starts building in China

Yang Shiqun, a professor of ancient Chinese, reports in his blog ( that two of his young female students reported him to the city's public security bureau and education committee, accusing him of making counter-revolutionary comments during a lecture, critical of government and Chinese culture.

At least one internet site discussed this as "bizarre....While revolutionary, counter-revolutionary and reactionary were among my first English words added to my vocabulary in the 1970s, they have rarely been used since 1978, when the country opted to forget slogans like, "Never forget class struggle". Counter-revolution, once a top crime according to the Chinese criminal law, was abolished in 1997. Students from such an elite law school are supposed to know more about this than the average Chinese. Counter-revolutionary crime, even under the old criminal law, referred to those whose aim it was to overthrow the government. That surely had nothing to do with Professor Yang's criticisms of government practice and Chinese culture. At the same time, students as young as these two, born many years after the "cultural revolution" (1966-76), cannot fully understand what counter-revolutionary means for the many people who were persecuted under such a name during the several leftist movements three decades ago. By accusing their professor of being a reactionary, the two female students have done nothing but opened old wounds on such crimes that once tore apart our nation."

Regretfully, this respected commentator does not understand what is happening in his own country.

Due to increasing economic and social pressures, China is at a point of decision: the Party must use repressive measures once again to keep itself in power - or the Party must genuinely democratise the country - with the attendant risks and gains to the Party.

Watch out for signs such as this "denunciation" to spot the direction in which China is going. Sphere: Related Content

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