Sunday, 5 October 2008

A look back on China and the Olympics

August was China's great coming-out party
As summer ended, China was put in the global limelight. It had been chosen to host the 2008 Summer Olympics years ago, but this was it's time to shine. Expectations were built up; some dashed (political), some realized (Olympic).

Here are three political thoughts on the PRC that I jotted down as I enjoyed the splendor of the Olympic games:
The future
Perhaps even in 30 years China may drift away from one-party rule. China's economic change is moving at a rapid rate, prompting political change (moving much more slowly). China has been opening up over the past few decades, and one imagines this process will accelerate. On the flip side I cannot see the full transition to a multiparty state happening in less than 25 years.

Since when were the opinions of people protesting for basic freedom irrelevant? The Tiananmen Square massacre gave us a chance to observe the total wrath of the Communist Party in China. Since when were the rights of any person outside of the central party in China respected? In a nation where tens of thousands are employed to control what information one can access on the Internet, freedom is obviously something in short supply.

Actions abroad
The Chinese government brought the criticism it has received lately for its foreign policy upon itself. In subverting the rights of its people, causing cultural genocide in Tibet and other areas, degrading the environment to a remarkable extent, and supporting genocidal regimes such as the one in Sudan, and propping up the Burmese junta, the PRC presents itself as one of the most negative actors in the world.

No comments: