Archive for August, 2010

Filipino police pose for photos near site of hostage crisis, Chinese angered [People’s Daily]

Posted in China, Hong Kong, Philippines on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

August 26, 2010

Chinese netizens are up in arms over online photos of Filipinos posing near the site of a hostage situation that claimed the lives of eight Hong Kong-born Chinese tourists on Aug. 23.

Photos show Filipino police posing near the site of a hostage situation that claimed the lives of eight Hong Kong-born Chinese tourists on Aug. 23.

The tourists were killed when an ex-policeman armed with an M16 rifle boarded a public bus and held 25 people hostage in Manila, the capital of the Philippines.

Critics of the response by the Philippine police said they had some obvious shortcomings in handling the hostage situation. The police team should have ended the bus siege in less than one minute, but actually the crisis took 79 minutes and was satirized by the media as the “longest rescue operation.”

According to Phoenix TV, to everyone’s surprise, local police and residents took pictures smiling in front of the hijacked bus where the bloody siege happened.

Some netizens have showed anger over the photo, saying “It is a loss of humanity when I see the smile on the face of the Philippine police when they take photo.” Other netizens said, “Just leave the hijacked bus there. Maybe it can become a scenic spot symbolizing the Philippines’ humiliation.”

By Zhang Xinyi, People’s Daily Online

Article link here


Crimes By U.S. Soldiers in S.Korea on the Rise [Prensa Latina]

Posted in south Korea, US foreign occupation, US imperialism on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

Seoul, Aug 29 (Prensa Latina) The number of crimes committed by U.S. soldiers in South Korea rose by 64.2 percent last year, compared to 2008, and included a case of murder, official sources reported on Sunday.

According to a police report, U.S. forces accused of violating the regulations governing their presence in South Korea totaled 306, compared to 183 in the previous period.

These individuals included 201 soldiers and the rest were staff and relatives.

Violence-related charges were filed against 130 of these individuals, while 90 had to respond for cases of theft, including seven by force, and five for rape, the report said.

The United States has more than 28,000 soldiers in South Korean territory.

Article link here

Cheonan investigation team member indicted [The Hankyoreh / 한겨레]

Posted in Cheonan sinking, south Korea on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

Shin had been under fire by government officials for claiming that the government and military manufactured the cause of the sinking

August 27, 2010

By Noh Hyun-woong

Shin Sang-chul, the 52-year-old former member of the civilian-military investigation team that looked into the sinking of the Cheonan, has been indicted without detention.  Shin has claimed that the government and military manufactured the cause of the sinking.

The Seoul Central District Court indicted Shin on Thursday on charges of defamation for claiming that the government and military have been covering up the cause of the Cheonan sinking, and that the real cause was that the ship had run aground or collided with another object.

Shin has been accused of claiming that the Cheonan sank after colliding with a U.S. warship after running aground, that survivors are being pressured or detained to cover the reason up and that there were no signs to show that warship sank from an outside explosion in 34 stories, media interviews and lectures between March 31 and June 15, including a story in the Internet news site “Surprise.”

Prosecutors opened the investigation after a series of complaints by the acting head of the investigation team, Defense Ministry and Navy Chief of Staff, beginning May 20.

In particular, prosecutors explained, “Shin was formally indicted due to the perceived seriousness of his crime given the nature of his continued spreading of false facts even after the complaints were received and he was under investigation.”

In order to determine the veracity of his Shin‘s claims, prosecutors visited the site where the Cheonan’s hull is being kept on July 30.

“Shin claims that there are scrapes on the hull from when the Cheonan ran aground, but an on-sight investigation revealed no such scrapes,” said a prosecution official. “In order to prove his claim, which does not accord with objective reality, Shin continued to claim new false grounds.”

During an interview with the Hankyoreh, Shin said, “I have been worried that the indictment will not go through, because I will prove that the investigation team’s announcement was a lie in the courtroom, where the truth is legally uncovered.[“]

Article link here

Evo Morales: Israeli Nukes Call for Sanctions [Prensa Latina]

Posted in Bolivia, Evo Morales, Iran, Israel, Israeli Nukes on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

La Paz, Aug 30 (Prensa Latina) Bolivian President Evo Morales demanded United Nations sanctions for Israel, which holds dozens of nuclear weapons, instead punishing Iran.

Israel possesses 60 to 200 nuclear bombs, but it does not officially declare them, Morales affirmed, according to international news reports…

…Morales also thanked Iran for its unconditional cooperation, expressed in the Bolivian capital by special envoys of of Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad, and disclosed that an interministerial commission will travel to Tehran in late September.

Full article here

US-S.Korea continued military drills aimed at fall of North [Global Times]

Posted in Cheonan sinking, China, Pentagon, south Korea, US foreign occupation, US imperialism, USA 21st Century Cold War on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

August 26, 2010

Signs of the ongoing US-South Korea military drill show that the joint war game is not simply a warning or a show of force after the sinking of the Cheonan, nor is it a deliberate attempt to provoke China in the Yellow Sea.

China has to be careful of the two allies’ strategic goal, which is to create turmoil in North Korea…

China must also be wary of the US putting the entire Korean Peninsula under its influence.

The two Koreas have been deadlocked for nearly six decades.  Not many people believe the situation can last forever.

Any change will mean a massive strategic change of power in Northeast Asia, as well as a change in the global balance of power.

Washington has made plans in the event of various scenarios, and has long been trying to push the situation in the direction that favors a US global strategy.

To put it simply, the US has never changed its basic policy toward North Korea, which is to ensue a regime change.

Although Washington is not openly talking about the policy, its goal remains to overthrow the current North Korean government.

The US-South Korean joint military exercises are a move to accelerate this momentum.  It is a strategy to push and prepare for change, and take the initiative if the regime change really happens.

The controversial sinking of the South Korean battleship, in retrospect, is more like a convenient excuse for the US to conduct a long-planned drill that envisions the occupation of the North, rather than a single reaction toward an emergency.

US military leaders have been drawing up such plans since the end of last year.

The South’s unification ministry has also admitted that the South was practicing a “stabilization” program aimed at turning North Koreans into South Korean citizens.

The Korean Peninsula is too important to ignore in the realm of global geopolitics.  US control of the peninsula will pose a realistic threat to China and Russia…

…China needs to clearly realize this, and try to play an active role in preserving the peace on the Korean Peninsula, as well as look after its own interests.

[Edited with emphases by 左手]

Full article link here

Chinese legislature proposes increasing income, narrowing gap in wealth [People’s Daily]

Posted in China, Income gap on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

August 25, 2010

China’s top legislature, the National People’s Congress (NPC), has proposed a reform in income distribution be launched as soon as possible, aiming to increase residents’ income and narrow the gap in wealth.

Officials of the Financial and Economic Affairs Committee of the NPC said they have completed a research report on distribution of national income and made the proposals to be included in the 12th Five-Year Plan (2011-2015).

The research report proposes increasing the proportion of residents’ income in national revenue and the proportion of labor rewards in the primary distribution of national income.  It suggests that the reforms should seek to enlarge the middle class until it becomes the largest sector in society.  The report also offers proposals on taxation and social security.

The legislature did not release further details on the proposed reforms in income distribution.

The NPC, for the first time in history, completed 15 research reports on 14 major subjects from March to July to provide proposals for the formulation of the critical development plans for the next five years, after top legislator Wu Bangguo called for the research at the annual legislative session.

According to a World Bank report, the Gini Coefficient for China, a main gauge of c disparity surged to 0.47 in 2009, exceeding the “security line” of 0.4, pointing to the unequal distribution of income which could arouse social unrest.

This figure was 0.21 to 0.27 three decades ago. ‘  In the primary distribution of national income, the proportion that goes to wages and salaries, the major source for China’s mid- and low-income families, has been declining, according to Yi Xianrong, a researcher at the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.

The proportion of the total income that Chinese citizens receive from the distribution of national income fell sharply to 57.9 percent in 2007, compared with 68 percent 20 years ago, according to the People’s Bank of China.

Source: Xinhua

Article link here

Young Chinese couples face pressure from “4-2-1” family structure [People’s Daily]

Posted in China, Economy, Family planning policy on August 31, 2010 by Zuo Shou / 左手

August 25, 2010

Since China started implementing the family-planning policy in the 1970s, the first generation of people who are the only child in their family is starting to come of age in China.  Now more than 30 years after the policy was implemented, their parents are aging.  As a result, such young Chinese couples have to shoulder the responsibility of supporting four seniors and raising one child, facing enormous pressure.

The “4-2-1” family structure means that after a married couple who are both the only child of their respective family has a child, the family will consist of four seniors (each of their parents), one child and the couple themselves.

The couple is under the heavy pressure of shouldering the responsibility of supporting four seniors and raising at least one child.  Traditionally, the support system for the elderly in China is family-based, and the motto of “bringing up sons to support parents in their old age” has been preserved by the Chinese for years.

Seniors have always been dependent on their descendants for support.  However, following the social development and the changes in family structure, the problem of those born under the family-planning policy being financially unable or having no time to take care of their parents is becoming increasingly serious.
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