First he handed out cash to victims of China’s 2008 earthquake. Then he sold “canned fresh air” to residents of smog-ridden Beijing.
Now Chen Guangbiao, listed as one of China’s 400 richest people and a man known as much for his publicity stunts as his wealth, claims he is in talks to buy the New York Times.
“Soon, I will go to America to do three things,” Chen told a crowd Monday night at a news media award reception in the southern Chinese boom town of Shenzhen, according to the semi-official China News Service.
The first, he said, “is to go discuss the acquisition of the New York Times”. Continue reading
There have been numerous bilateral visits by political figures and diplomats from East Asia to the Arctic countries over the past year. Former president of South Korea, Lee Myung-bak, visited Norway and Greenland last September, while former Premier Wen Jiabao visited Sweden and Iceland in April 2012. In April 2013, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Russia with 100 Japanese businessmen in tow to discuss energy cooperation, among other issues. Continue reading
The quicksands of the Arabian Desert are notorious for swallowing up anyone trying to control the area. Historically, that’s what happened to Turkey, Britain, France, Russia and the US. Sooner or later, all discovered that instead of dominating the Middle East, they ended up being dominated by the region’s never-ending problems.
And that may also be the fate of China, the latest power to be lured by the idea that it has to engage in Middle-Eastern diplomacy. Unless decision-makers in Beijing are thoroughly prepared for what awaits, they will also find that the region can absorb all their energies, and usually for no practical effect. Continue reading
China will increase military spending by 10.7 per cent this year to 720.2 billion yuan (US$115.7 billion), the government announced on Tuesday, building on a nearly unbroken succession of double-digit rises in the defence budget across two decades.
“We should accelerate the modernisation of national defence and the armed forces so as to strengthen China’s defence and military capabilities,” Premier Wen Jiabao said in remarks prepared for delivery ahead of the start of China’s annual meeting of parliament. Continue reading
Bo brought up helping Baidu fight off its main competitor, Google, and gain a monopoly in the Chinese-language search engine market. Jiang Zhi recalled that Li bowed to Bo right on the spot.
Bo was willing to promise that Google would be thrust out of China, but a quid quo pro was involved. Bo needed Baidu to cooperate with Chongqing officials and lift the censorship on articles criticizing Party head Hu Jintao, Premier Wen Jiabao, and presumptive next Party head Xi Jinping. The articles would be published on websites outside China favoring former Party head Jiang Zemin.
Full article: EXCLUSIVE: Google Forced Out of China, Plotted by Bo Xilai and Security Boss (Epoch Times)
Amidst the alleged coup that took place in China, here is a quick list of who’s who in today’s Chinese movers and shakers (click link for pictures):
Current paramount leader of Chinese Communist Party.
Promoted for persecution in Tibet.
To be replaced by Xi Jinping.
Allied with Premier Wen Jiabao.
Argued against Bo Xilai’s promotion to vice premier during 17th Congress.
Wants to reform CCP.
Next Chairman, current VP, vice chair Central Military Commission
Unaligned, tolerated by both factions but was possible target for overthrow by Bo Xilai and Zhou Yongkang.
Former Head of Chongqing Municipal Public Security Bureau
Attempted to defect while at the U.S. Consulate Feb. 6.
Rumored to have betrayed Bo to Hu-Wen faction, possibly leading to Bo’s arrest.
Former leader of communist party
Is said to be the real No. 2 of the Standing Committee. Helped further Bo Xilai’s political career.
Secretary of Political and Legislative Affairs Committee.
Rumored to have been recently purged. Hard-liner and ally of Jiang; rose through persecuting Falun Gong.
Former Chongqing party secretary
Ally of Zhou and Jiang, once a possibility for Standing Committee, recently purged and arrested. Rose through persecuting Falun Gong.
Full article: Major Players in Beijing Power Struggle (Epoch Times)
Over the night of March 19 and early morning of March 20, Bejing local time, a message about a large number of military police showing up in Beijing spread widely across microblogs in mainland China.
The key figures in the action are said to be: Hu Jintao, the head of the CCP; Wen Jiabao, the premier; Zhou Yongkang, who has control of the People’s Republic of China’s police forces; and Bo Xilai, who was dismissed from his post as head of the Chongqing City Communist Party on March 15 by Wen Jiabao, after a scandal involving Bo’s former police chief.
Li Delin, who is on the editorial board of Securities Market Weekly and lives in Dongcheng District of Beijing, wrote on his microblog a report that confirmed unusual troop movements: “There are numerous army vehicles, Changan Street is continuously being controlled. There are many plainclothes police in every intersection, and some intersections even had iron fences set up.”
According to the message that went viral on China’s Internet, a military force with unknown designation quickly occupied many important places in Zhongnanhai, the Chinese leadership compound in Beijing, and Beijing in the early morning of March 20, with the cooperation of Beijing armed police.
The troops entered Beijing to “get and protect Bo Xilai,” according to the message.
A mainland Chinese reader has told The Epoch Times that a military coup has taken place in Beijing.
It is still unknown who, if anyone, has been arrested.
The Epoch Times is at present trying to verify the messages.
Full article: Coup in Beijing, Says Chinese Internet Rumor Mill (Epoch Times)
HONG KONG — Prime Minister Wen Jiabao said Thursday that China was considering whether to work with the International Monetary Fund to play a greater role in financing Europe’s efforts to end a sovereign debt crisis, but he left it unclear whether China was willing to drop conditions that would make its help unappealing for European countries.
Mr. Wen, speaking at a press conference in Beijing after a meeting with Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany on the first day of her three-day visit to China, said that officials were studying whether China should be “involving itself more” in Europe’s debt troubles through investments in the European Financial Stability Facility and the European Stability Mechanism. This could be done through the I.M.F., he said.
One idea under consideration by China in recent months is whether it could lend money to the I.M.F., which would then lend it to Europe. This would transfer the risk of a European default to the I.M.F.
Russia embraced this approach in December, but was willing to lend only $20 billion. China had $3.18 trillion in foreign exchange reserves at the end of December, dwarfing the reserves of every other country and potentially giving it the financial power to make a much bigger contribution.
Mrs. Merkel is the first of several European leaders scheduled to visit China this month, the latest in a series of signs that China’s huge foreign exchange reserves have begun to give it financial influence to rival Washington’s.
Full article: China Considers Offering Aid in Europe’s Debt Crisis (New York Times)