I’m sure all of you have heard variations of the above prediction over the past decade or so. I know I have.
Perhaps China will be the next great nation, but perhaps not. I’ll tell you one thing, unless the political environment changes a lot over there, a world defined by the Chinese perspective is not a world I want to live in.
The relative lack of political and internet freedom in China is well known, as is the egregious treatment of the Tibetan people. Despite having controlled Tibet since 1949, and the subsequent intentional migration of ethnic Han Chinese into the region in order to dilute the culture, Chinese authorities remain paranoid and filled with fear. So much so that the government is panicking at recent statements by the Dalai Lama that he may not be reincarnated. This screws up the government’s plan to name the next Dalai Lama and use him as a puppet stooge for the regime. Truly embarrassing.
Spiegel Online International (Der Spiegel, German news magazine), Feb. 5, 2015 (emphasis added): [It’s] the worst accident in the history of civilian atomic power… The Fukushima catastrophe changed the world. Nuclear reactors melted down on live television and twice as much radioactive material was released as during the Chernobyl accident in 1986. The disaster… poisoned entire landscapes for centuries and killed hundreds of thousands of farm animals… Fukushima is more than just a place-name, it is an historical event…
Scientists from the Chinese Academy of Sciences, University of Venice, and Nanjing University, Feb 6, 2015: The β radioactivity of snow-pit samples collected in the spring of 2011 on four Tibetan Plateau glaciers demonstrate a remarkable peak in each snow pit profile, with peaks about ten to tens of times higher than background levels. The timing of these peaks suggests that the high radioactivity resulted from the Fukushima nuclear… The released radioactive nuclear substances not only polluted Japan… but also spread to other areas of the Northern Hemisphere via atmospheric circulation and ocean currents, affecting the hemispheric and even global environment. As an overdose of nuclear radiation may seriously threaten human health and wildlife survival, this nuclear accident has caught the attention of the world. The radioactive fallout [was] detected in the atmosphere, soil, surface water, and pastures in the low-altitude regions of North America… Much of the radioactive material was transported by the westerlies, resulting in the fallout over North America… [T]o reach the Tibetan Plateau, material transported by the westerlies has to first circle much of the globe… In May 2011, snow-pit samples were collected on the Gurenhekou Glacier… Dongkemadi Glacier… Muztag Glacier and Yuzhufeng Glacier… In 2005 and 2007, we drilled ice cores… Tanggula ice core [and] Yuzhufeng ice core… Clearly, the peak β radioactivities in the snow pits… are much higher than that in the corresponding local ice cores, and even overwhelm the peak β radioactivities caused by past atmospheric thermonuclear tests in the early 1960s… The peak β radioactivities… are 11.0 and 92.4 times larger than their local average background levels… attributed to the Fukushima radioactive fallout… The Fukushima nuclear accident… created a radioactive horizon that can be used as independent age markers in snow and ice cores in the Northern Hemisphere… providing a direct record of the impacts of human activities on the Earth’s environment…
Officials at the 18th party Congress claimed yesterday that the ‘Skynet’ network has divided the region into a closely monitored grid and that teams of security personnel can be mobilised within two minutes to put an end to the suicide attempts.
Six Tibetans have doused themselves with petrol and set themselves alight since the eve of China’s once-in-a-decade leadership change on Wednesday bringing to 69 the number who are reported to have died in the past year.
Yesterday (FRI), thousands of students marched in protest in Rebkhong county, Qinghai province, according to Free Tibet, an activist group, and armed police stepped up their presence.
Speaking at the Congress in Beijing Losang Gyaltsen, the vice chairman of the local government in Tibet, said: “We do not want to see such incidents,” he said. “We do not want anyone to spoil Tibet as a happy region. For locals, we are checking IDs and for visitors we have checkpoints and security checks on travel.
“We also have a grid management system, so if any immolation happens in a certain block, we can launch an emergency rescue within two minutes,” he added.
Skynet is a highly secretive network and it is not known how many people work for it or how far is its reach. It has hardly been mentioned in official state media communications and is supposed to have a camera on every road in Tibet and in the Tibetan areas of Gansu and Sichuan.
Over the last few years, WikiLeaks has been the subject of hostile acts by security organizations. In the developing world, these range from the appalling assassination of two related human rights lawyers in Nairobi last March (an armed attack on my compound there in 2007 is still unattributed) to an unsuccessful mass attack by Chinese computers on our servers in Stockholm, after we published photos of murders in Tibet.
In the West this has ranged from the overt, the head of Germany’s foreign intelligence service, the BND, threatening to prosecute us unless we removed a report on CIA activity in Kosovo, to the covert, to an ambush by a “James Bond” character in a Luxembourg car park, an event that ended with a mere “we think it would be in your interest to…”.
Developing world violence aside, we’ve become used to the level of security service interest in us and have established procedures to ignore that interest.
But the increase in surveillance activities this last month, in a time when we are barely publishing due to fundraising, are excessive. Some of the new interest is related to a film exposing a U.S. massacre we will release at the U.S. National Press Club on April 5.
The spying includes attempted covert following, photographing, filming and the overt detention & questioning of a WikiLeaks’ volunteer in Iceland on Monday night.
I, and others were in Iceland to advise Icelandic parliamentarians on the Icelandic Modern Media Initiative, a new package of laws designed to protect investigative journalists and internet services from spying and censorship. As such, the spying has an extra poignancy.
The possible triggers:
our ongoing work on a classified film revealing civilian casualties occurring under the command of the U.S, general, David Petraeus.
pending releases related to the collapse of the Icelandic banks and Icelandic “oligarchs”.
We have discovered half a dozen attempts at covert surveillance in Reykjavik both by native English speakers and Icelanders. On the occasions where these individuals were approached, they ran away. One had marked police equipment and the license plates for another suspicious vehicle track back to the Icelandic private VIP bodyguard firm Terr. What does that mean? We don’t know. But as you will see, other events are clear.
China is urging the US government to cancel plans for President Barack Obama to meet next week with Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama.
Chinese-US relations have already deteriorated over Taiwan, electronic security, and now with the potential economic threat by China. This meeting means relations between the two countries are going to get even worse.
The White House yesterday confirmed that President Obama will meet the Dalai Lama on February 18, despite China’s objections.
• Dalai Lama and foreign ministries bugged
• Cambridge researchers point finger at Beijing
An enormous electronic espionage programme run from servers in China has been used to spy on computers in more than 100 countries, according to two reports published at the weekend.
The reports, published by the universities of Cambridge and Toronto, detail a “murky realm” where cyber spooks infiltrate email, take over humble desktop computers and use them to spy on organisations, individuals and governments.
The reports name the system GhostNet, and claim that it has been used to attack governments in south and south-east Asia as well as the offices of the Dalai Lama. In two years, the reports suggest, the operation infiltrated 1,295 computers in 103 countries.
Video footage from Tibet is extremely rare. The film, which shows violent scenes from the March 2008 riots, is the clearest evidence yet that Tibetans were subject to police brutality as China struggled for control in Lhasa.
In the seven-minute film, exerpts of which are shown above, Chinese police kick and beat apparently defenceless Tibetan protesters and monks after they have been handcuffed and are lying on the ground.
The Tibetan government-in-exile, which is based in Dharamsala in India, said the treatment of the captives violated international norms and amounted to torture.
Until now, the only video evidence of the riots in March was shot from long-distance and showed clashes in the streets of Lhasa but not evidence of torture.
“This is the first footage which visibly proves the use of brutal and excessive force against Tibetan protesters. It clearly challenges official Chinese statements that disproportionate force was not used on unarmed protesters,” said Stephanie Brigden, the director of the international campaign group Free Tibet.
The second half of the video, which is too graphic to show here, documents a serious set of injuries allegedly sustained by a Tibetan worker after he intervened in the beating of a monk.
According to the Tibetan government-in-exile, Chinese police shot at the man, who was named as Tendar, and then stubbed cigarettes out on his body, forced a nail through his right foot and beat him with an electric baton.
He was initially taken to a military hospital but, according to the video, his wounds were merely wrapped in cling film, which allowed them to rot. He subsequently died of his injuries in June 2008.
Hillary Clinton has told China that the US considers human rights concerns secondary to economic survival.
Arriving in China on her first visit as US secretary of state, Mrs Clinton promised a new relationship between the two countries, one she considers to be the world’s most important of the 21st century.
Mrs Clinton landed in Beijing from South Korea, where she lashed out at the North Korean “tyranny” of its leader Kim Jong-il.
But in contrast she offered a conciliatory hand of friendship to Mr Kim’s ally China, contradicting hostile policies both she and President Barack Obama promised during their presidential campaigns last year.
She said she would continue to press China on issues such as human rights and Tibet, but added: “Our pressing on those issues can’t interfere on the global economic crisis, the global climate change crisis and the security crisis.”
France President Nicolas Sarkozy (L) is greeted by Tibet’s exiled spiritual leader the Dalai Lama in Gdansk December 6, 2008. Sarkozy will pay a “heavy price” for meeting the Dalai Lama, a Chinese state paper said on Monday, keeping up Beijing’s vitriol over Sarkozy’s 30-minute encounter with the exiled Buddhist leader. REUTERS/Eric Feferberg/Pool
BEIJING (Reuters) – French President Nicolas Sarkozy will pay a “heavy price” for meeting the Dalai Lama, a Chinese state paper said on Monday, keeping up Beijing’s vitriol over Sarkozy’s 30-minute encounter with the exiled Buddhist leader.
Beijing brands the Dalai Lama a dangerous “splittist” for demanding self-determination for Tibet and was incensed by Sarkozy’s meeting on Saturday with the 73-year-old Buddhist monk.
Sarkozy told the Dalai Lama at their meeting in Poland that Europe shared his concerns over his homeland, which the Dalai Lama fled after a failed uprising against Chinese rule in 1959.
Chinese Vice Foreign Minister He Yafei on Sunday said it was up to France to “fully understand the damage” done to relations by Sarkozy, who holds the rotating presidency of the European Union until the end of the year.
Now the overseas edition of the People’s Daily has again warned that China will not easily forget the meeting, accusing Sarkozy of opportunism and trampling on China’s interests.
“He ignored China’s repeated entreaties and stubbornly refused to shift, plainly determined to step over China’s red line,” said an editorial in the newspaper, which acts as the voice of the ruling Communist Party.
“This malicious provocation concerns China’s core interest in national unity and inevitably will exact a heavy price.”
Farmers in Baoding face ruin from a man-made drought
THOUSANDS of Chinese farmers face ruin because their water has been cut off to guarantee supplies to the Olympics in Beijing, and officials are now trying to cover up a grotesque scandal of blunders, lies and repression.
In the capital, foreign dignitaries have admired millions of flowers in bloom and lush, well-watered greens around its famous sights. But just 90 minutes south by train, peasants are hacking at the dry earth as their crops wilt, their money runs out and the work of generations gives way to despair, debt and, in a few cases, suicide.
In between these two Chinas stands a cordon of roadblocks and hundreds of security agents deployed to make sure that the one never sees the other.
The water scandal is a parable of what can happen when a demanding global event is awarded to a poor agricultural nation run by a dictatorship; and the irony is that none of it has turned out to be necessary.
“Over the past two years, some 200,000 surveillance cameras have been installed throughout the city. Many are in public spaces, disguised as lampposts.”
“The security cameras are just one part of a much broader high-tech surveillance and censorship program known in China as “Golden Shield.” The end goal is to use the latest people-tracking technology — thoughtfully supplied by American giants like IBM, Honeywell and General Electric — to create an airtight consumer cocoon:”
“Like everything else assembled in China with American parts, Police State 2.0 is ready for export to a neighborhood near you.”
“This is how this Golden Shield will work: Chinese citizens will be watched around the clock through networked CCTV cameras and remote monitoring of computers. They will be listened to on their phone calls, monitored by digital voice-recognition technologies. Their Internet access will be aggressively limited through the country’s notorious system of online controls known as the “Great Firewall.” Their movements will be tracked through national ID cards with scannable computer chips and photos that are instantly uploaded to police databases and linked to their holder’s personal data. This is the most important element of all: linking all these tools together in a massive, searchable database of names, photos, residency information, work history and biometric data. When Golden Shield is finished, there will be a photo in those databases for every person in China: 1.3 billion faces.”
“Here is a small sample of what the company (L-1) does: produces passports and passport cards for American citizens; takes finger scans of visitors to the U.S. under the Department of Homeland Security’s massive U.S.-Visit program; equips U.S. soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan with “mobile iris and multimodal devices” so they can collect biometric data in the field; maintains the State Department’s “largest facial-recognition database system”; and produces driver’s licenses in Illinois, Montana and North Carolina. In addition, L-1 has an even more secretive intelligence unit called SpecTal. Asked by a Wall Street analyst to discuss, in “extremely general” terms, what the division was doing with contracts worth roughly $100 million, the company’s CEO would only say, “Stay tuned.””
“It is L-1’s deep integration with multiple U.S. government agencies that makes its dealings in China so interesting: It isn’t just L-1 that is potentially helping the Chinese police to nab political dissidents, it’s U.S. taxpayers. The technology that Yao purchased for just a few thousand dollars is the result of Defense Department research grants and contracts going as far back as 1994, when a young academic named Joseph Atick (the research director Fordyce consulted on L-1’s China dealings) taught a computer at Rockefeller University to recognize his face.” ________________________________________________________________________________________
Thirty years ago, the city of Shenzhen didn’t exist. Back in those days, it was a string of small fishing villages and collectively run rice paddies, a place of rutted dirt roads and traditional temples. That was before the Communist Party chose it – thanks to its location close to Hong Kong’s port – to be China’s first “special economic zone,” one of only four areas where capitalism would be permitted on a trial basis.
The theory behind the experiment was that the “real” China would keep its socialist soul intact while profiting from the private-sector jobs and industrial development created in Shenzhen. The result was a city of pure commerce, undiluted by history or rooted culture – the crack cocaine of capitalism. It was a force so addictive to investors that the Shenzhen experiment quickly expanded, swallowing not just the surrounding Pearl River Delta, which now houses roughly 100,000 factories, but much of the rest of the country as well.
Communist Chinese-style political oppression came to San Francisco on Wednesday when police, acting on the orders of Chinese paramilitary cops, removed and shoved to the sidewalk an Olympic torch bearer for displaying a Tibetan flag, as the woman’s pleas that she had the right to free speech as an American citizen fell on deaf ears.
Equally outrageous as Carter having her right to free speech violated is the fact that San Francisco police were following the orders of the Chinese paramilitary cops who turned her over to them in the first place. This is completely illegal and lawsuits need to be brought on the basis that the city allowed foreign cops to police Americans, which is completely unlawful unless a state of martial law has been announced. The people of San Francisco have a basic human right to know whether or not their city is operating under martial law.
In a You Tube video, Majora Carter, the founder and Executive Director of Sustainable South Bronx, and co-founder of Green for All, is seen being reprimanded by police before being pushed to the sidewalk during the Olympic procession.
Watch the clip.
“I was carrying a flag for Tibet and the Chinese guards came and took it from me,” said Carter.
“I’m an American citizen, if I want to stand and support other people in Tibet I can do so – and I was not given that right,” she continued.
“Free Tibet! Because we’re American, we can do that,” exclaimed Carter.
According to the New York Daily News, “Carter said a Chinese paramilitary squad escorting the torch pounced and turned her over to cops, who pushed her into the crowd.”
“I was expressing my right as an American citizen using freedom of speech in support of people who don’t have it,” Carter said. “It just became really clear to me what was going on in Tibet and I wanted to do something,” Carter told the media.
“Apparently, I’m not part of the Olympic torch-bearing entourage anymore,” she quipped.
The Coca-Cola Company, who had sponsored Carter to represent them during the torch relay, were nonplussed about the incident.
“It’s unfortunate that Ms.Carter used an invitation to participate in the torch relay as a platform to make a personal, political statement,” a company spokeswoman said.
Majora Carter talks to the media after she is shoved to the sidewalk and kicked out of the Olympic procession by San Francisco police – acting on the orders of Chinese paramilitary police.
“It would be more disgusting not exercising my constitutional right,” Carter responded.
Carter was asked to make the statement by Students for a Free Tibet in Memphis during last week’s events to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s death.
A report in the New York Daily Newsquoted an NYPD police officer and a retired FDNY fireman, both of whom also carried the torch and chastised Carter’s actions as “disgusting and appalling,” seemingly ignorant of that fact that such protests are outlawed in China because it is a Communist police state, unlike America which is supposed to be “the land of the free” where a God-given right to freedom of speech is afforded to every American citizen.
The incident coincides with an announcement by Jacques Rogge, the president of the International Olympic Committee, who said that athletes who display Tibetan flags, even in the privacy of their own rooms, could be expelled from this summer’s Games in Beijingunder anti-propaganda rules.
This is not the first time that American police have displayed behavior more befitting of their Communist Chinese counterparts. During a March 14th rally in New York, peaceful Tibetan demonstrators were beaten up by cops who also threatened to kill them, during a sickening attack that was also caught on video.
Paul Joseph Watson
Friday, April 11, 2008
LONDON—Britain’s GCHQ, the government communications agency that electronically monitors half the world from space, has confirmed the claim by the Dalai Lama that agents of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army, the PLA, posing as monks, triggered the riots that have left hundreds of Tibetans dead or injured.
Tibetans and Han Chinese residents look at Chinese soldiers as they patrol a street in Kangding county,
the capital of Ganzi Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, in China’s southwestern Sichuan province.
(Teh Eng Koon/AFP/Getty Images)
GCHQ analysts believe the decision was deliberately calculated by the Beijing leadership to provide an excuse to stamp out the simmering unrest in the region, which is already attracting unwelcome world attention in the run-up to the Olympic Games this summer.
A boy being taken by force along a street in the Tibetan capital Lhasa
China blocks internet access over coverage of protests
Dozens of Tibetan prisoners were paraded on military trucks in Lhasa yesterday, with their heads bent and wrists handcuffed behind their backs, as soldiers from China’s People’s Liberation Army tightened their grip on the Tibetan capital.
Tibetan Buddhist monks on a hillside above the Drepung Monastery where the protests began
Paramilitary police have surrounded Tibet’s most important monasteries after hundreds of monks shouting “Long live the Dalai Lama” defied Beijing in the biggest protest in the Himalayan region for almost 20 years.
Witnesses described violent clashes between monks and police on the outskirts of Lhasa on Monday afternoon and reported hearing as many as 60 gunshots as troops forced the monks to return to their quarters early yesterday. They said that about 60 monks from Drepung monastery were detained on the edge of the Tibetan capital and about 11 from Sera monastery were arrested after shouting anti-Chinese slogans.