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Week of November 3, 2000

Week of October 05, 2001

The U.S. and China This Week



 

DOMESTIC: China Celebrates National Day and Mid-Autumn Festival

SUMMARY: (10/1) On Monday, October 1, China celebrated both its National Day and the mid-autumn festival, a coincidence that happens every 19 years.   For the third year in a row, policymakers granted a seven-day holiday break to allow people to travel as tourists as an effort to boost consumer spending.

To mark the 52nd anniversary of the founding of the People’s Republic of China, Chinese leaders attended a grand reception in Beijing hosted by the State Council.  During the event, Premier Zhu Rongji delivered a speech reiterating China’s determination to make China an even better country to live in.  He also stressed China’s opposition against terrorism and hegemonism.  Zhu said China stands for building a just and rational new international political and economic order.  Elsewhere in Beijing, 200,000 people gathered in Tiananmen Square to witness the national-flag hoisting ceremony, while a reported 1.18 million tourists from across the country have come to the city to see its many historical attractions.

In Hong Kong chief executive Tung Chee-hwa, along with 500 officials and guests, recognized China’s national day during it’s own flag-raising ceremony amid tight security and protests.  Slogan-chanting protesters called for the end of communist party rule on the mainland and the release of all political prisoners.  Members of the Falungong have claimed some 289 practitioners have died in police custody in China since the government outlawed the religious group in July 1999.

In celebration of the mid-autumn festival, Hong Kong held several lantern carnivals, while others enjoyed the traditional holiday by eating mooncakes and moon watching
 


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INTERNATIONAL: Jiang’s Diplomacy Reflects Concern Over China’s Stature

SUMMARY:  (10/1) - In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States, Chinese President Jiang Zemin has made numerous telephone calls to world leaders, which analysts say is a reflection of Jiang’s worry that China is not considered a player in world affairs. Analysts say China’s desire to wield global influence is natural given that it will host the 2008 Olympics and will soon join the World Trade Organization.

In a call to Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf September 30, Jiang said the United States needed to produce evidence that Osama Bin Laden was behind the attacks that killed several thousand people before retaliating against him and his al-Qaeda group. Jiang also argued the United States should abide by international law in its response, according to the official Xinhua news agency. And Jiang stressed America should only hit “concrete targets.?China has issued statements maintaining that America should avoid attacks that would harm innocent civilians.

Darryl Jarvis, University of Sydney expert on Asian international relations, said Jiang’s stance on terror is “a veto against the United States conducting bombing raids into Afghanistan.?Jarvis maintained, “China is more comfortable with a Delta Force-style slash-and-burn, quickly-in, quickly-out strategy.?

In addition to Musharraf, Jiang spoke on the telephone with Sri Lankan President Chandrika Kumaratunga, U.S. President George W. Bush, and the leaders of France, Britain and Russia. China fears that a U.S. military campaign against Afghanistan may embroil the United States in the region for a long time. In a National Day speech, Premier Zhu Rongji attacked both terrorism and what he called “hegemonism,?Chinese lingo for what it considers is an overly powerful United States in the post-Cold War world.

Jiang told Musharraf that China would send Pakistan 1.21 million dollars of emergency aid; Pakistan fears large numbers of Afghan refugees may try to enter its terrain.  China is worried that refugees may try to enter Xinjiang province, where they could connect with Muslim separatists. The Chinese Foreign Ministry maintained China could close its border with Afghanistan immediately if it wanted to.
 


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CROSSS-STRAIT RELATIONS: Taiwanese Speculate on Terror in Wake of Attacks on U.S.

SUMMARY: (10/3) - In the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks on the United States, a Taiwanese professor has raised the possibility that China could resort to terrorist acts against Taiwan. “It is not impossible for the mainland to use unconventional tactics against Taiwan in the future,?said Chao Chien-min of the Sun Yat-sen Graduate Institute for Social Sciences and Humanities. Chao said that the mainland has “many ultra-nationalists.?#060;/font>

In 1999, two People’s Liberation Army colonels published a book, Unrestricted Warfare, calling for China to use “dirty war?tactics such as terrorism and computer viruses against Taiwan. “The battlefield will be everywhere,?the colonels wrote. “There is nothing in the world today that cannot become a weapon.?In an interview last year with the organ of the Communist Party’s youth league, Qiao Liang, one of the writers, said there are no rules in unrestricted warfare. He commented that “nothing is forbidden.?#060;/font>

The first vice-chairman of the Mainland Affairs Council, Lin Chong-pin, said in addition to nuclear and non-nuclear warfare, China has been developing what he deemed a “third leg ?acupunctural or pressure point warfare. It’ll be a war of paralysis rather than a war of annihilation.?#060;/font>

Several Taiwanese political analysts, however, said China will probably not resort to terrorism against Taiwan. “China could use economic rather than terrorist tactics against Taiwan,?said Ho Szu-yin, director of Taiwan’s Institute of International Relations, a prestigious government-funded think-tank. According to Ho, “The mainland may be a gangster, but it is not a terrorist. It intimidates, but does not necessarily inflict harm.?#060;/font>

Lin Bih-jaw, who was an aide to former president Lee Teng-hui, also said he did not agree that China would use terrorism against Taiwan. However, Lin, now a professor of diplomacy and vice-president of National Chengchi University, did maintain that Taiwan will have to beef up security if the island develops direct air links with the mainland and opens up to mainland tourists. In the early 1990s, there were various Chinese planes hijacked and brought to Taiwan by disgruntled mainlanders seeking a new life on the island; none resulted in tragedy.
 


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U.S.-CHINA RELATIONS: China Releases U.S. Scholar

In the midst of a recent thaw in U.S.-China relations, China released U.S. citizen Wu Jianmin, who was arrested in April and charged with spying for Taiwan.  Wu’s release coincides with a planned visit by President George W. Bush to China for the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit in Shanghai on October 20 and 21.  This overture is expected to improve the political environment for the first meeting between Bush and Chinese President Jiang Zemin.

Born in China, Wu taught at a Communist Party school and was a journalist for a state newspaper in southern China from 1986 to 1988, according to a Hong Kong based rights group.  In 1989 he moved to the United States and became a citizen in 1996.  His wife and child currently live in New York.

Wu wrote a book about the Tiananmen democracy protests and its bloody crackdown and, as a journalist in Hong Kong, has written articles on Chinese politics for several journals and magazines.  He was arrested after crossing over into Shenzhen in May, 2001.    Xinhua news agency quoted the Ministry of State Security as saying, “Wu was employed by the intelligence agency of Taiwan, and conducted espionage activities on the Chinese mainland many times, seriously jeopardizing the national security of China.?amp;nbsp; Chinese officials stated they released Wu due to his admittance of guilt and the disclosure of his accomplices?criminal activities.  He was immediately put on a plane and deported to the United States.

Wu is the forth Chinese American released over a short time period after they were arrested and held in China on espionage charges.  There has been no word on other cases involving detained U.S. permanent residents, including Liu Yaping and Teng Chunyan.
 



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