BERLIN -- The New Silk Road Initiative will not only result in an enormous surge in growth for China. With "One Belt, One Road," President Xi Jinping is launching one of the largest development projects in history and offers new perspectives to countries such as Uzbekistan and Tajikistan threatened by terrorism.
SINGAPORE -- This is a rare window of opportunity for China. If Xi had not launched the anti-corruption campaign now, it would have been impossible to do so in 10 years time. By then the vested interest groups would have become too powerful. If the economic oligarchy becomes a political one, China will become the Russia of yesterday.
"Once, humans believed that the earth was flat," he said. "Even a decade ago, people would not believe that a cell phone could work. Humans, if we have never seen something with our own eyes, naturally doubt that it exists, or that life could be that way. I was the first to be brave enough to say: 'I saw that.'"
BEIJING -- "Under the Dome" displays the growing power of social media in China today. It is not a production of any official filmmaking companies, whose products have traditionally dominated the Chinese TV and film screens. This dominance, however, has been challenged by the rising mobile internet and social media. With an exploding 730 million user accounts of mobile Internet in 2014, more and more Chinese individuals are putting up their self-made videos on entertaining portals like youku and iQiyi,
BEIJING -- In the Western media, the National People's Congress -- China's legislative body -- is perfunctorily conjoined with the phrase "rubber stamp." This characterization is less and less true every year and does a disservice to understanding the most significant historic shift taking place in China today: the long march toward "rule according to law" from administrative fiat.
The U.S. chose a policy that could be called "integrate and insure." China was welcomed into the World Trade Organization, but the U.S.-Japan security treaty was revived to insure against China becoming a bully. If a rising China throws its weight around, it drives neighbors to seek to balance its power. In that sense, only China can contain China.
The Cultural Revolution days of an autarkic closed information loop when the Communist Party could dictate a narrative for an isolated and impoverished society are over for China. To believe otherwise is to undermine the very links to the rest of the world that have enabled China to become the ever-more prospering world power it is today.
BEIJING -- Corruption in a democracy doesn't mean the political system is not democratic. In contrast, China prides itself on being a political meritocracy that selects and promotes leaders with superior ability and virtue. The value of meritocracy is central to Chinese political culture. The higher the level of political corruption, the less meritocratic the political system. Hence, the regime will lack legitimacy if its leaders are seen to be corrupt.
HONG KONG -- Despite its media portrayals as a spiritual and cultural wasteland, China is home to more than 200 million people who are either "Buddhists, Taoists or worshippers of legendary figures such as the Dragon King and God of Fortune." China also has 36,000 mosques, 45,000 imams and over 21 million Muslims. By 2030, it will have a Muslim population larger than Saudi Arabia's today and a Christian population larger than any other country in the world. The world's largest publisher of Bibles, Amity Printing Company, is located in the Chinese city of Nanjing.
To be a responsible Charlie might be more important than to be a mere Charlie, which stresses an abstract concept of freedom. Appreciating the right of liberty, while being sensible of each other's culture, brings more benefit and less harm than otherwise. The truth is neither "We are all Charlie," nor "We are not Charlie," but "We are not all Charlie."
SEOUL -- With the U.S. economy yet to recover fully from the global economic crisis, and American politics increasingly dysfunctional, there is a global power vacuum that China, with shrewd diplomacy and economic might, hopes to fill -- beginning in Asia. This may not yet mean Asia for only the Asians; but it could mean a reduced regional role for the U.S. -- especially as America turns inward during the presidential election season that starts this year.
BEIJING -- Just when you start getting depressed about the way things are going in China, along comes Shen Kui (沈岿), an associate professor and vice dean at Peking University Law School, to show that at least some of China's thinking people are not going to take the government's policy of intellectual anesthesia in higher education lying down.
China's censors are well trained and equipped to identify content that poses a potential challenge to the Chinese Communist Party's social and ideological control. We have consistently found that the most interesting stories are those which propaganda officials handpick to censor, but which Internet users feel compelled to discuss anyway, often using coded or cryptic language.