Mon, Dec 04, 2017 - Page 6 News List

China demonstrates its ruthlessness

By Chen Fang-ming 陳芳明

The Chinese Communist Party’s 19th National Congress ended less than two months ago and Xi is still busy reorganizing the party to increase his power.

Lee’s severe punishment was meant to serve as a warning to all Chinese, showing them the consequences of speaking freely on Facebook and other non-Chinese Web sites.

It confirms that Beijing is monitoring everything that people say. Any Chinese-speaking user of Facebook could be arrested on charges of “subversion of state power” for criticizing the Chinese government or Chinese society: Even if the criticism was made outside of China, the moment you enter the country, you could be indicted.

All of Lee’s comments about China that led to his heavy penalty were made in Taiwan, discussing politics with his Chinese friends online.

Even though it is such a big country and it claims to be the world’s largest democracy, China cannot endure any political discussions on Facebook. Lee’s comments and discussions fell within the scope of an NGO and that Beijing should consider such comments a threat to its regime just shows how fragile it is.

The way Beijing is evicting the “low-end population” from the country’s capital reveals how inhumane Xi’s rule is. This “low-end population,” including blue-collar and white-collar workers, have all contributed to China’s economy and tax revenue. If the Chinese government can be so ruthless with them, it can certainly be ruthless with Taiwan’s democracy advocates.

In China, which claims to be the world’s biggest democracy, even the pettiest remarks can be exaggerated and treated as the worst of crimes — China, the most powerful country and the greatest democracy in the world.

Chen Fang-ming is a professor at the Graduate Institute of Taiwanese Literature at National Chengchi University.

Translated by Tu Yu-an

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