On being careful what you wish for…

So eager has China’s government been to have one of its citizens win a Nobel Prize that someone even wrote a book about it.  But this wasn’t what Beijing had in mind. In giving the Peace Prize to Charter 08’s Liu Xiaobo, “the Nobel committee once again displayed its arrogance and prejudice against a country that has made the most remarkable economic and social progress in the past three decades.” The decision was a blasphemy that desecrated the prize, according to a foreign affairs spokesman (maybe the same one who described the Olympic flame as ‘sacred’ a couple of years back).

Sometimes you can see why the black hair-dye brigade up in Zhongnanhai must think the whole world is against them. The rest of the planet relies on China’s mighty economic munificence, yet the full respect they crave just isn’t forthcoming.

Their protests anytime anyone meets the Dalai Lama or Uigur activist Rebiya Kadeer are received as boorish and insecure and simply raise the splittists’ profiles. The world’s crumbling, soon-to-be number-two power, the US, spends mid-2010 rejecting China’s claim to the South China Sea, endorsing Japanese sovereignty over the Doaiyu/Senkaku Islands and preparing to disregard pleas not to sell Taiwan a new range of sea and air defence equipment. Now, after imploring Norway not to disgrace the prize Alfred Nobel originally established to honour those who (as the spokesman puts it) contribute to “national harmony and country-to-country friendship,” and warning the Nordics of damaged relations, Liu gets the prize anyway. It’s a conspiracy. Is there any other explanation?

The Chinese government brought this squarely on itself last Christmas Day by sentencing Liu to an extremely harsh 11 years for his authorship of Charter 08’s call for peaceful transition to constitutional democratic rule. Beijing’s desperate intention was to prevent him from becoming a prominent de-facto opposition leader. If they had locked him up for a year or two, as they had on three previous occasions, it would have been just another jailing for Liu. But now his name is known around the world, and he really is the nearest China has to a Mandela or Aung San Suu Kyi. And no doubt millions of curious Chinese who have barely heard of him will seek and find a copy of Charter 08 to read. Nice job.

Meanwhile, the world awaits with interest to see what sort of revenge the PRC will find to wreak upon Scandinavia’s oil sheikdom. Norwegians want for nothing, least of all from China. But I guess that’s the last batch of panda bear sperm Oslo Zoo will be seeing for a while.

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9 Responses to On being careful what you wish for…

  1. TG says:

    “China has allowed a new province to join the PRC. The new province know as “Norway” will be given a special status with PLA troops providing security to the destabilised region… The local people will become one of China’s official minorities. Some have already complained of the influx of Han Chinese and the difficulties they cause such, issues like providing jobs to only Han and so forth. However, this local approves, saying he believes it will bring more jobs and money to the impoverished area and thinks it’s a good thing.”

  2. maugrim says:

    This diplomacy stuff is getting to be fun:

    “The Indian government has already complained over remarks by New Zealand TV presenter Paul Henry who made fun of Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit’s surname.

    In English, the pronunciation is closer to “Dixit”.

    “It is shocking that such bigoted views have been aired by a representative of a mainstream media organisation of a multi-ethnic democracy like New Zealand,” India’s foreign ministry said in a statement.

    “These remarks are totally unacceptable to India and should be condemned by all right-thinking people and nations.”

  3. cecilie says:

    “Multi-ethnic” being the key word. Nobody has ever accused China of that. It has one ethnicity, Han, and then some minor peripheral ones that the Han let keep existing, and who sing and dance all the time. “Norwegians” in their funny national costumes and tendency to burst into loud song and frenetic dancing at any given time, are among these.

  4. Dirty Gertie From Number 30 says:

    The Nobel Peace Prize is a croc of shit. Think about recent past winners who have won the award, such as Al Gore and Barack Obama. In 1979, they gave it to that stupid bitch, Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu.

    For what it is worth, my advice to the Chinese authorities is keep things nice and quiet for the next week or so. Then, pretty soon all the brouhaha will die down.

  5. anonymous says:

    WOT! Me got deleted? Wot about Nobel prize, freedom of speech etc.?

  6. Doctor Devil's Advocate says:

    Thanks Gunlaw. Where the op-ed author says: “Most Chinese would prefer to handle their own affairs without outside interference”, is he not tacitly promoting democracy?

    Off with his head!

    Or at least give him 11 years in the slammer …

  7. anonymous (aka freedom-of-speech) says:

    WOW. Am I Undeleted now? I should maybe try again? So, the deleted, (offending?) comment was: “Ah-h…Shaddup…” Seems appropriate still.

  8. anonymous says:

    Deleted again… Too much to expect an explanation, I suppose…?!

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