Is Tiananmen butcher Chen Xitong remorseful?


“Drop butcher’s knife, become a Buddha at once.” This is a Chinese saying much used in the past and indeed made some bad people turn a new leaf. However it has seldom been used since the communists came to power perhaps because a despot, if a communist, must be an atheist not so easily persuaded as the despots before the communist takeover. However, I agree that even if a despot is a communist, when he is really willing to drop butcher’s knife and turn a new leaf, he can also become a Buddha at once.

Does this saying apply to Chen Xitong, a major Tiananmen butcher whose hands are stained with lots of students’ blood. We shall first ask whether he has dropped butcher’s knife.

He does not prepare his memoirs to show his remorse of the killing or the terror he created in Beijing after the Massacre. He does not reveal the details of how he ordered soldiers to kill and how many they killed and wounded though he had the best access to such information at that time. He did not reveal how he rounded up participants of the democracy movement and tortured them to get information of other participants’ whereabouts.

In fact, Yao Jianfu, the writer of the memoirs based on his interviews with Chen Xitong, told BBC reporter that he met Chen on May 29 and heard Chen say that Chen regarded himself a firm communist and Chen had not changed his basic attitude against June 4 even today.

Certainly, Chen has not dropped butcher’s knife. Chen said killing could be avoided as if he regrets the killing he has done, but as a “firm communist”, he would arrest students and torture them though not kill them.

Why then did he give the interviews and want the memoirs published?

According to Yao, he wants to “restore the truth and set the records straight”.

What records? His role in the Tiananmen crackdown and his corruption crime.

So far Chen has been regarded as a major Tiananmen butcher ranking next only to Li Peng. He certainly does not want to leave such a record in Chinese history and bring shame to his offspring. However, he cannot deny his involvement in the Massacre. He only wants to be regarded as a “small potato” doing what he was ordered to in directing the killing, giving reports on the incident and reading the report to NPC Standing Committee to justify the killing.

If his self-defense were accepted, the name of him, “a small potato”, would perhaps not appear in the history record about that major incident in Chinese history or even if appeared, would not draw much attention. Chen forgets that Li Peng’s description of him being the chief commander of the Massacre was based on the actual role he played in the Massacre instead of some official appointment. Moreover, he cannot deny the facts that he obviously enjoyed the limelight given to him, the honor granted him in reading the report and the promotion he got for his contribution to the Massacre (he was promoted into the powerful Politburo for his role in the Massacre) at that time.

At the time during and after the Massacre, exaggeration of his role in the Massacre would make him very happy, but now things have changed. He knows sooner or later, there will be reassessment of the June 4 incident to regard it as Chinese people’ unprecedented struggle for democracy and denounce Tiananmen butchers.

He publishes the memoirs first of all to shake off his notorious reputation as a major Tiananmen butcher.

However, his arguments are very weak. As mentioned above, he cannot deny he actually played the role as the chief commander of the Massacre.

As for his argument that he has not deceived late paramount leader Deng Xioping into making a wrong decision to send the People’s Liberation Army into the square, Chen was so happy when Yao quoted Zhao Ziyang’s words that “Deng wouldn’t be Deng if he could be easily tricked.” Note, Chen does not deny that he did provide information to deceive Deng, but is only happy that as Deng could not be deceived, his information failed to play a decisive role in causing Deng to make the decision.

Chen’s memoirs conspicuously reflect Tiananmen butchers’ fear of the future. Every year when the anniversary of June 4 approaches, they will be filled with consternation that Tiananmen Protests may be redressed on the anniversary. Even Chinese leaders are filled with worry. They will perhaps be embarrassed again by questions about or demand for redressing the event.

Better a finger off than aye wagging. Redress the event immediately to remove the embarrassment forever. Jiang Zemin cannot do that nor can Hu Jintao. Redressing the event will affect Deng Xiaoping’s reputation. Deng was both Jiang’s and Hu’s mentor. He picked them from obscurity and promoted them to the top. It has been a long-established practice in Chinese politics that one never hurts one’s mentor.

Jiang was clever to find a way out. Chosen as the successor after the Massacre, he certainly incurred the strong hatred arisen from the Massacre as he was benefited by the Massacre though his hands have not been stained by the blood. To give vent to their indignation, people wanted at least one Tiananmen butcher punished for whatever reason. If it was impossible to punish the butcher for the Massacre, find whatever offense in him to punish him.

Beijing deputy mayor Wang Baosen’s suicide gave Jiang the opportunity to punish Chen Xitong. Was the evidence sufficient enough? Perhaps not, but Jiang did not care, nor did people who had been incensed by the Massacre. Anyway, Jiang became more acceptable by punishing Chen.

Publisher Bao Pu and writer Yao Jianfu are perhaps not aware how happy people were when they learnt that Chen, a major Tiananmen butcher, was in trouble as perhaps neither Bao nor Yao lived among those who felt happy when Chen was punished. To be honest, perhaps Chen shall not have been imprisoned for such a long term for his corruption crime, but he deserves the death penalty for his capital crime in the Massacre. He shall regard himself as lucky for being merely imprisoned.

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Chen Guangcheng fights back


New York Times carries Chen’s article that describe the dire violation of Chinese laws by those whose duties are to implement the rule of law.

To read the article please visit New York Times website at:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/05/30/opinion/how-china-flouts-its-laws.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=edit_th_20120530


Drop butcher’s knife, become a Buddha at once


The heading is a Chinese saying much used in the past and indeed made some bad people turn a new leaf. However it has seldom been used since the Communist came to power perhaps because a despot, if a communist, must be an atheist not so easily persuaded as the despots before him. However, I agree that even if a despot is a communist, when he is really willing to drop butcher’s knife and turn a new leaf, he can also become a Buddha at once.

Does this saying apply to Chen Xitong, a major Tiananmen butcher whose hands are stained with lots of students’ blood. We shall first ask whether he has dropped butcher’s knife.

He does not prepare his memoirs to show his remorse of the killing or the terror he created in Beijing after the Massacre. He does not reveal the details of how he ordered soldiers to kill and how many they killed and wounded though he had the best access to such information at that time. He did not reveal how he rounded up participants of the democracy movement and tortured them to get information of other participants’ whereabouts.

In fact, Yao Jianfu, the writer of the memoirs based on his interviews with Chen Xitong, told BBC reporter that he met Chen on May 29 and heard Chen say that Chen regarded himself a firm communist and he had not changed his basic attitude against June 4 even today.

Certainly, he has not dropped butcher’s knife. Chen said killing could be avoided, but as a “firm communist”, he would arrest students and torture them though not kill them.

Why then did he give the interviews and wanted the memoirs published?

According to Yao, Yao and he want to “restore the truth and set the records straight”.

What records? His role in the Tiananmen crackdown and his corruption crime.

So far Chen has been regarded as a major Tiananmen butcher ranking next only to Li Peng. He certainly does not want to leave such a record in Chinese history and bring shame to his offspring. However, he cannot deny his involvement in the Massacre. He only wants to be regarded as a “small potato” doing what he was ordered to in directing the killing, giving reports on the incident and reading the report to NPC Standing Committee to justify the killing.

If his self-defense were accepted, the name of him, a small potato, would perhaps not appear in the history record about that major incident in Chinese history or even if appeared, would not draw much attention. Chen forgets that Li Peng’s description of him being the chief commander of the Massacre was based on the actual role he played in the Massacre instead of some official appointment of the post. Moreover, he cannot deny the facts that he obviously enjoyed the limelight given to him at that time, the honor granted him in reading the report and the promotion he got for his contribution to the Massacre (he was promoted into the powerful Politburo for his role in the Massacre).

At the time during and after the Massacre, exaggeration of his role in the Massacre would make him very happy, but now things have changed. He knows sooner or later, there will be reassessment of the June 4 incident to regard it as Chinese people’ unprecedented struggle for democracy and denounce Tiananmen butchers.

He publishes the memoirs first of all to shake off his notorious reputation as a major Tiananmen butcher.

However, his arguments are very weak. I have pointed out that he cannot deny he actually played the role as the chief commander of the Massacre.

As for his argument that he has not deceived late paramount leader Deng Xioping into making a wrong decision to send the People’s Liberation Army into the square, Chen was so happy when Yao quoted Zhao Ziyang’s words that “Deng wouldn’t be Deng if he could be easily tricked.” Note, Chen does not deny that he did provide information to deceive Deng, but is only happy that as Deng cannot be deceived, his information failed to play a decisive role in causing Deng to make the decision.

Chen’s memoirs conspicuously reflect Tiananmen butchers’ fear of the future. Every year when the anniversary of June 4 approaches, they will be filled with consternation that Tiananmen Protests may be redressed on the anniversary. Even Chinese leaders are filled with worry. They will perhaps be embarrassed again by questions about or even the mere mentioning of the event.

Better a finger off than aye wagging. Redress the event immediately to remove the embarrassment forever. Jiang Zemin cannot do that nor can Hu Jintao. Redressing the event will affect Deng Xiaoping’s reputation. Deng was both Jiang’s and Hu’s mentor. He picked them from obscurity and promoted them to the top. It has been a long-established practice in Chinese politics that one never hurts one’s mentor.

Jiang was clever to find a way out. Chosen as the successor after the Massacre, he certainly incurred the strong hatred arisen from the Massacre as he was benefited by the Massacre though his hands have not been stained by the blood. To give vent to their indignation, people wanted one Tiananmen butcher punished for whatever reason. He could not be punished for the Massacre, but find whatever offense in him to punish him.

Beijing deputy mayor Wang Baosen’s suicide gave Jiang the opportunity to punish Chen Xitong. Was the evidence sufficient enough? Perhaps not, but Jiang did not care, nor did people who had been incensed by the Massacre. Anyway, Jiang became more acceptable by punishing Chen.

Publisher Bao Pu and writer Yao Jianfu are perhaps not aware how happy people were when they learnt that Chen, a major Tiananmen butcher, was in trouble as they did not live among those who felt happy when Chen was punished. To be honest, perhaps Chen shall not have been imprisoned for such a long term for his corruption crime, but he deserves the death penalty for his capital crime in the Massacre. He shall regard himself as lucky for being merely imprisoned.


Electric-car safety tests faulted, SCMP


According to SCMP, after deaths of driver and two passengers in a fire when a sports car rammed an electric taxi at high speed, experts say tests don’t simulate high-speed impact as such tests are too time-consuming and require the destruction of too many cars.

For details please visit SCMP website at:

http://www.scmp.com/portal/site/SCMP/menuitem.2af62ecb329d3d7733492d9253a0a0a0/?vgnextoid=34f7874b07997310VgnVCM100000360a0a0aRCRD&ss=China&s=News


Restraints agreed by Chinese and Philippine defense heads


According to China’s official Xinhua news agency and SCMP, in a meeting between Chinese Defense Minister General Liang Guanglie met his Philippine counterpart Voltaire Gazmin on May 28 in Cambodian capital Phnom Penh, they both agreed to restraint their rhetoric and deed to avoid intensifying the tension and to continue communication until a peaceful resolution can be reached.

According to Xinhua, Liang said Chin aand the Philippines were close neighbors. China attached great importance to the development of the relations between the two countries and militaries.

Leung pointed out that Huangyan Island (Scarborough Shoal) was Chinese inherent territory allowing no dispute. The recent Huangyan Island incident was entirely caused by the armed disturbance of Chinese fishermen by a Philippine warship. What the Philippines had done since the incident occurred complicated the situation. China asked the Philippines to earnestly respect China’s sovereignty and refrain from taking any action that might further complicate and intensify the situation. He hoped that the Philippine defense department and military put the interests of the whole above everything else, stay calm and restraint, be cautious in their words and deeds so as to maintain regional peace and stability.

Gazmin thanked Liang for meeting him and exchanged views with him on the sensitive issue. He expressed the hope that the two countries’ defense departments shall continue communications while their diplomats were dealing with the sensitive issue so as to facilitate a peaceful and rational solution of the issue.

SCMP says in addition that “The deputy chief of general staff of the People’s Liberation Army, General Ma Xiaotian, told Phoenix TV on Monday that the PLA was able to protect China’s maritime territories but ‘at the moment China is not preparing to resort to military means – that would be the very last option’.”


Self-censorship code of conduct for Chinese microbloggers, Reuter


Reuters reports from Shanghai that China’s major microblog website Sina has introduced a code of conduct to intensify self-censorship. Users are now not allowed to post information against the principles of the constitution, harm national unity, disclose state secrets or publish false information, among other bans.

For details please visit Reuters website at:
http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/05/29/us-china-microblogging-idUSBRE84S03T20120529


Party expels ex-rail chief; trials looms, HK media


According to SCMP, “Former railways minister Liu Zhijun, who spearheaded the breakneck high-speed railway development, has been expelled from the Communist Party and is facing imminent prosecution for corruption.”

Singtao Daily says that according to Xinhua, Liu was accused of four crimes: taking huge amount of bribes, corrupt lifestyle, helping businesswoman Ding Yuxin make huge illegal profits and responsibility for causing massive corruption in the railway sector. Sources say, Liu has at least 18 mistresses and have taken more than 800 million yuan (US$148 million) of bribes.

Liu, 59, once nicknamed “Father of High-speed Railways” abused his power to grant tenders to Ding Yuxin in exchange for huge illegal gains. He was held mainly responsible of the fatal accident at wenzhou as he raised the speed on Ningbo-Webzhou Railway 50 kilometers/hour above the designed speed.

The report says Liu’s serious violation of Party discipline constituted crimes and in addition to the disciplinary punishment of expelling from the Party and administrative punishment of removal of all his government posts, his cases have been transferred to the judiciary for punishment.

Sources say, due to the huge amount of bribes and serious damage to China’s image caused by the accident, Liu may get death sentence or at least suspended death sentence.