View Full Version : Boredom obviously rife in China

11-04-2005, 15:26
20,000 out in protest over a textbook? Don't these people have better things to do? :confused: :confused:

From: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/ArticleNews/TPStory/LAC/20050411/CHINA11/TPInternational/Asia

In China's streets, massive protests . . .Beijing scrambles to contain explosive anti-Japanese ralliesBy GEOFFREY YORK

Monday, April 11, 2005 Page A1

BEIJING -- Street protests erupted in southern China yesterday as the government struggled to control a mounting wave of anti-Japanese demonstrations that has damaged relations between Asia's two biggest economic powers.

An estimated 20,000 protesters marched through the streets of Guangzhou and Shenzhen yesterday, a day after the biggest street protests in Beijing since 1999.

The protests have spilled into violence and vandalism in several of China's largest cities over the past two weeks. Thousands of protesters have overturned cars, burned Japanese flags, smashed windows, thrown eggs and bottles, destroyed billboards, assaulted Japanese shops and restaurants, and attacked the offices and homes of Japanese diplomats.

The demonstrations seem to be tacitly authorized by the Chinese government as a way of venting frustrations and putting pressure on Tokyo, but there are signs that the rallies are becoming difficult to control.


Thousands of demonstrators burst past police lines on Saturday in Beijing, marching 15 kilometres from their original rally site to reach the Japanese embassy and ambassador's residence, where they threw stones and bricks as they cursed the Japanese.

The demonstration, which included up to 20,000 people at its peak, was the largest and most violent protest in the Chinese capital since 1999, when angry crowds threw rocks at the U.S. embassy after a U.S. bomb killed three people at the Chinese embassy in Belgrade.

Anti-Japanese protests continued yesterday in Guangzhou and Shenzhen, two of the biggest cities in southern China. About 10,000 people, including some who threw rocks, gathered outside a Guangzhou shopping centre where a Japanese supermarket is located.

A smaller number surrounded a hotel that houses the Japanese consulate, throwing plastic bottles and breaking a window in a hotel restaurant. They also destroyed a car in front of a Japanese restaurant.

In Shenzhen, about 10,000 protesters gathered outside a Japanese supermarket. Many carried banners or wore T-shirts with slogans demanding a boycott of Japanese products.

In another major Chinese city, Chengdu, protesters rallied on Saturday at a shopping mall operated by a Japanese company and smashed windows at a Japanese supermarket.

In Shanghai, two Japanese students were beaten and injured on Saturday night by an unknown number of Chinese.

Officially, the demonstrations are a response to two recent events: a new history textbook in Japan that plays down Japanese atrocities in China during the 1930s, and a controversial Japanese bid to gain a permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council.

But nationalist sentiment and anti-Japanese feelings have been mounting in China for several years. In part, this is a backlash against a more assertive and hard-line attitude in Japan, where politicians are increasingly willing to risk disputes with the Chinese government.

Despite vociferous Chinese protests, Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi has made annual visits to a military shrine where Japanese war criminals are honoured. And Japan has clashed with China over disputed islands and offshore oil and gas deposits in the East China Sea. When a Chinese submarine entered Japanese waters without warning last fall, the Japanese military tracked it for three days.

The latest protests have been largely organized through Internet messages, e-mails, and text messages on cellphones.

"Let everyone in the world know that we Chinese are still the great dragon of the east," said a message posted on an Internet weblog by an organizer of the Beijing protests this weekend. "All those who love this country, please forward this message to more than 20 people."

Meanwhile, an anti-Japan boycott is gaining momentum, with some shops refusing to sell Japanese products. A banner with an anti-Japanese message was posted at a popular health club in Beijing yesterday. A taxi bore a sign on its door reading: "This car won't take Japanese passengers."

Analysts say the Chinese government has allowed the protests because they serve China's interests, putting pressure on Tokyo to back down from its controversial UN bid and its hard-line stance in territorial disputes.

But at the same time, they say, the government believes it must accept the protests as an outlet for the growing anti-Japanese mood.

"It has to tread a delicate line on this," said Wenran Jiang, a political scientist at the University of Alberta who specializes in China-Japan relations. "Nationalism is always a double-edged sword. If the authorities mishandle the sentiment, the movement could easily turn against the Chinese leadership."

If officials try to shut down the anti-Japan protests, he said, word will quickly spread that the government is blocking a legitimate concern of the Chinese. Beijing's strategy is to allow people to vent their frustrations with the protests, "but not to make things look like the authorities are out of control of the situation," he said.

11-04-2005, 21:42
A lot less to do with a textbook than possibly having another Asian country on the UN Security Council come this September.

China doesn't allow demonstrations or gatherings like the ones above. If it wasn't arranged by the gov., there'd have been another Tiananmen Square-like massacre.

The Japanese were absolutely evil "in the name of science" during the war to their Asian neighbors. Even in the mid-nineties when I lived there, regular citizens would avoid all talk of war atrocities and deny their past doings as well as the holocaust in Europe as ever existing.

Lady Marmalade
12-04-2005, 12:56
Whoa Nelly, of course they're out in force, and so are the Koreans over the same Textbook with it's polite toning down of certain events in history. Oh, those comfort women... The only thing I find hilarious and at the same time very tragic is that they're [the Chinese] not using their energy to protest their own government's whitewashing of history, they do the same as well as Korea's and Japans's. But, truth is indeed always a unique reality especially within a country. I even see it in the gaps of what my husband learned about world history growing up in Russia and what I learned about world history growing up in Canada. We have very different takes on World War II which makes for some unusual discussions.