Wednesday, April 9, 2008

God Loves The Onion

What the Chinese Media has to say about the Torch that Everyone is Trying to Extinguish

Here’s how the Chinese Communist Party’s English version of the People’s Daily is portraying American calls for some type of action on the Beijing Olympics in response to recent turmoil in Tibet:

“ According to some U.S. media reports, Pelosi said in March that what happened in Tibet is a challenge to the conscience of the world. But people have to ask who is posing this challenge. The truth is, normal life was resumed in Lhasa after the Chinese government took appropriate actions according to law. More than 100 countries in the world have expressed their understanding of and support to Chinese government’s actions, an indication that the international community sides with China on the issue.”

Notice the appeal to the “international community.” The Chinese government is very adept at appealing at the median voter amongst the world’s nations. Proposals that seek to deploy American or European soft power to change Chinese behavior - such as Sen. Clinton’s call on President to boycott the opening ceremonies of the Olympics -have a really high hurdle to overcome as long as China can appeal to such a broad global coalition of nations that care a lot about sovereignty and have not been persuaded about the West’s focus on democracy and human rights.


The Olympics, since well before Hitler displayed Nazism to the world in '36, has always been political. Suggesting that it has ever been or could be otherwise is disingenuous. Personally, I am in favor of a boycott. It would be nice to shoot a volley across Peking's ever growing bow. The ironic bit is that China was one of the 64 countries that boycotted the Moscow Olympics of 1980.

I thought Anne Applebaum put it very well here where she argues thatL

The Olympics are the perfect place for a protest