Sunday, October 28, 2012

(In China Nothing Is Ever As It Appears) China’s Internet censors strike again

The Washington Post
AS CHINA’S prime minister over the past decade, Wen Jiabao was often described as a populist and reformer, sometimes nicknamed “Grandpa Wen” because of his folksy willingness to meet ordinary people. One of Mr. Wen’s refrains was that Chinese officials at all levels should declare their personal assets, and those of family members, in an effort to fight corruption. Mr. Wen suggested that the information should be published for all to see.
On Friday, the New York Times took Mr. Wen at his word and published an eye-opening exposé that revealed that members of his family control assets of some $2.7 billion, including interests in banks, jewelers, tourist resorts, telecommunications companies and infrastructure projects, some of it held in offshore entities. The article marks yet another startling glimpse into how China’s leading families, many of them descended from Mao’s generation, have used their power to become fabulously wealthy. The ouster of Bo Xilai as boss of Chongqing and the subsequent prosecutions in an alleged graft and murder scandal provided another showcase example this year.
As soon as the Times article was published, China’s Internet censors forgot about Mr. Wen’s desire for more openness. China blocked both the English and Mandarin Web sites of the Times so that hundreds of millions of its citizens could not read the account online.  To Read More…..  

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