Is China A Great Country Or What?

I’ll go with or what. Obama, he’ll go with the bow to Chinese President Hu Jintao.

China tries to sterilise 10,000 parents over one-child rule

Doctors in southern China are working around the clock to fulfil a government goal to sterilise — by force if necessary — almost 10,000 men and women who have violated birth control policies. Family planning authorities are so determined to stop couples from producing more children than the regulations allow that they are detaining the relatives of those who resist.

About 1,300 people are being held in cramped conditions in towns across Puning county, in Guangdong Province, as officials try to put pressure on couples who have illegal children to come forward for sterilisation.

The 20-day campaign, which was launched on April 7, aims to complete 9,559 sterilisations in Puning, which, with a population of 2.24 million, is the most populous county in the province.

A doctor in Daba village said that his team was working flat out, beginning sterilisations every day at 8am and working straight through until 4am the following day.

Zhang Lizhao, 38, the father of two sons, aged 6 and 4, said that he rushed home late last night from buying loquats for his wholesale fruit business to undergo sterilisation after his elder brother was detained. His wife had already returned so that the brother would be freed.

Mr Zhang said: “This morning my wife called me and said they were forcing her to be sterilised today. She pleaded with the clinic to wait because she has her period. But they would not wait a single day. I called and begged them but they said no. So I have rushed back. I am satisfied because I have two sons.”

Thousands of others have refused to submit and officials are continuing to detain relatives, including elderly parents, to force them to submit to surgery. Those in detention are required to listen to lectures on the rules limiting the size of families.

See also:
Chinese city detains 1,300 in compulsory sterilisation drive
Chinese detained in sterilization campaign
Chinese state holds parents hostage in sterilisation drive
China city targets 10,000 in sterilisation drive: report
China Tries to Sterilize 10,000 Parents Over One-Child Rule
Campaign launched to sterilise 10,000 people in China, reports claim
City cracks down on couples

What barbarians! Where is the international outcry, where are the human rights groups?

/just remember, these Chinese communists are the same nice people that hold most of our national debt and flood our retail stores with all manner of cheap, often dangerous crap

It Was 20 Years Ago Today

Tiananmen Anniversary Muted in Mainland China

Mainland China remained quiet Thursday on the 20th anniversary of the bloody Tiananmen Square crackdown, while tens of thousands of people staged a protest in Hong Kong.

Beijing, the capital, was on virtual lockdown. Key foreign news Web sites were blocked, dissidents were placed under house arrest, and police blanketed the vast square where a still-undetermined number of pro-democracy activists were killed in a violent clash with the military June 4, 1989. Journalists were kept away from the scene.

Several foreign governments called on Beijing this week to revisit its policy of ignoring the crackdown. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton said in a statement Wednesday that China “should examine openly the darker events of its past and provide a public accounting of those killed, detained or missing, both to learn and to heal.”

On Tuesday, Congress urged China to agree to a U.N.-backed inquiry into the crackdown, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said she had directly petitioned President Hu Jintao to free the estimated 30 people still being held for participating in the protests.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel commented in a speech Thursday that “June 4, 1989 . . . marked a terrible sacrifice in Tiananmen Square.”

Taiwanese President Ma Ying-jeou, who has pushed for closer ties with the mainland, said: “This painful chapter in history must be faced. Pretending it never happened is not an option.”

Over the years, Beijing has taken a two-pronged approach to the massacre. Domestically, the incident is ignored in history books, and discussion about it is banned to the point that many young people know nothing of what happened. In arguments directed to the international community, Beijing has said the crackdown was necessary to ensure social stability, which it says was a precondition for the market-driven changes that have since transformed China into the world’s third-largest economy.

On Thursday, Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang limited his remarks to a sentence: “On the political incident that took place in the 1980s, the party and the government have already reached a conclusion.”

In the weeks before the anniversary, authorities erased most traces of the massacre from the capital. Twitter and other Internet services that people could have used to coordinate gatherings were blocked, as were news Web sites such as CNN and the BBC. Foreign newspapers and magazines that had been covering commemorative protests in Hong Kong were delivered with pages ripped out. Writers, activists and even mothers of victims were put under surveillance or house arrest.

On Thursday, the only place on Chinese soil where a large-scale protest took place was Hong Kong, the former British colony that has maintained its own legal system since it reverted to Chinese rule in 1997.

Police estimated that 62,800 people, dressed either in white or funereal black, showed up for a vigil in downtown Victoria Park. Organizers put the figure closer to 150,000. Either way, the turnout was the largest since the annual event was first held in Hong Kong in 1990.

Xiong Yan, one of the 21 student leaders placed on Beijing’s “most wanted” list in 1989 and now a U.S. resident, attended the vigil, but Wuer Kaixi, No. 2 on the list, was back in Taiwan after being denied entry.

The Tiananmen Mothers — a Chinese democracy group led by Ding Zilin, whose teenage son was killed at the square — thanked the Hong Kong people for their support. In a statement, the group accused the Chinese government of using “the economy to lure and buy people.”

Lester Lai, 22, a recent university graduate, said he had come to the vigil because “economic progress is never an excuse for a government to kill its people.”

Deng Ying, a 30-year-old tourist from the mainland, said that in China, the authorities take advantage of the fact that they can ban “anything they are unhappy about.”

In this instance, she said, Hong Kong was acting as “China’s conscience.”

See also:
No ordinary day at Tiananmen Square
Demonstrators honor memory of Tiananmen Square in Hong Kong
Dalai Lama pays respects to Tiananmen Square victims
Tiananmen Mothers Press For Answers, 20 Years On
Thousands turn out to commemorate Tiananmen Square massacre… only in Hong Kong, not China
Tiananmen Square: 20 Years Later
Tiananmen Square: 20 Years Later
Police swarm Tiananmen Square on anniversary
China Blocks Twitter Ahead of Tiananmen Anniversary
China blocks Twitter, Flickr and Hotmail ahead of Tiananmen anniversary
Tiananmen Square protests of 1989

/just say no to the Chinese communists’ attempts to shove their bloody, evil, inhuman massacre of unarmed citizens down the history memory hole

Spy Versus Spy

One week ago today, one of our most advanced underwater surveillance ships, the USNS Impeccable, was minding our own business, in international waters, at least 75 miles of the coast of Hainan Island, well beyond China’s territorial waters, mapping the ocean floor spying on the recently discovered underground Yulin (Sanya) Naval Base. Well, naturally the Chinese didn’t like us monitoring their secret submarine base and so they decided to create an international incident.

U.S., China spar over ship incident

The U.S. Navy ship that got into a scrape with five Chinese vessels last weekend in the South China Sea was looking for threats such as submarines — presumably Chinese — in waters that China claims as its own, defense officials said Tuesday.

The United States maintains that the unarmed USNS Impeccable was operating legally in international waters when it was surrounded and harassed by the Chinese. Beijing responded hotly to a U.S. protest over Sunday’s incident, and neither nation is backing down, even as they prepare for a much-anticipated first meeting between President Barack Obama and Chinese President Hu Jintao next month.

Although they wouldn’t be specific about the Impeccable’s mission when it was intercepted by the Chinese ships, two defense officials said the unarmed ship is designed and equipped for sub-hunting work and was part of a calculated U.S. surveillance operation in the disputed South China Sea.

The surveillance ship tows a sonar apparatus that scans and listens for foreign threats that also include mines and torpedoes. The sonar array was deployed at the time of the confrontation, and a U.S. account says Chinese mariners tried to snag it with poles. The ship is operated by a civilian crew under Navy supervision.

Pentagon says Chinese vessels harassed U.S. ship

The Pentagon said Monday that Chinese ships harassed a U.S. surveillance ship Sunday in the South China Sea in the latest of several instances of “increasingly aggressive conduct” in the past week.

During the incident, five Chinese vessels “shadowed and aggressively maneuvered in dangerously close proximity to USNS Impeccable, in an apparent coordinated effort to harass the U.S. ocean surveillance ship while it was conducting routine operations in international waters,” the Pentagon said in a written statement.

The crew members aboard the vessels, two of which were within 50 feet, waved Chinese flags and told the U.S. ship to leave the area, the statement said.

“Because the vessels’ intentions were not known, Impeccable sprayed its fire hoses at one of the vessels in order to protect itself,” the statement said. “The Chinese crewmembers disrobed to their underwear and continued closing to within 25 feet.”

After the Impeccable alerted the Chinese ships “in a friendly manner” that it was seeking a safe path to depart the area, two of the Chinese ships stopped “directly ahead of USNS Impeccable, forcing Impeccable to conduct an emergency ‘all stop’ in order to avoid collision,” the statement said.

“They dropped pieces of wood in the water directly in front of Impeccable’s path.”

China says U.S. provoked naval incident

China lashed out at the United States on Tuesday, blaming a U.S. Navy ship for violating international law during a tense confrontation near a Chinese submarine base.

The Pentagon said five Chinese vessels had blocked and surrounded a U.S. surveillance ship, Impeccable, in international waters Sunday. One of the ships came within 25 feet of the U.S. boat, the Pentagon said.

“The U.S. claims are gravely in contravention of the facts and confuse black and white, and they are totally unacceptable to China,” said Ma Zhaoxu, a Foreign Ministry spokesman, at a briefing Tuesday in Beijing.

He did not specify what laws the U.S. ship had broken, but said the Impeccable had “conducted activities in China’s special economic zone in the South China Sea without China’s permission.”

Although the United States and other nations consider most of the South China Sea to be international waters, China claims an economic exclusion zone extending 200 nautical miles, or 230 miles, from its coastline.

The encounter Sunday was the latest in a series of recent incidents in which Chinese ships shadowed the towering, twin-hulled Impeccable. The Pentagon said the confrontation took place in the South China Sea, about 120 kilometers, or 75 miles, from the island of Hainan, where China has an underground naval complex with submarine caves.

A United States Navy photo obtained by The New York Times showed a Chinese sailor manning a long grappling hook, and a navy spokesman said the Chinese had used the hook to try to snag a cable that the Impeccable was using to tow an underwater listening device known as a Surtass array.

So, both sides are basically arguing about where the Impeccable was located. She was well within international waters as the United States claims and also well within one of the Special Economic Zones of the People’s Republic of China, kind of like the overlapping regions in a Venn diagram. Well, seeing as how the Impeccable was in international waters and was admittedly not engaged in any “economic activity”, I’m going to have to side with the good guys on this, the Chinese were legally wrong to interfere with the Impeccable’s navigation.

Of course the Chinese, if history is any guide, probably aren’t about to let something like international law stand in the way of one of our ships spying on their submarine base, so the U.S. upped the ante.

US destroyers to escort ships in South China Sea

The United States has decided to provide heavily armed destroyers to escort US surveillance ships operating in the South China Sea after a tense naval standoff this week, a US official said on Thursday.

“Right now they are going to escort these types of ships for the foreseeable future,” the defense official, speaking on condition of anonymity, told AFP.

The US government has said Chinese boats moved directly in front of the US Navy surveillance vessel Impeccable on Sunday, forcing the ship to take emergency action to avoid a collision.

A day after the incident, the USS Chung-Hoon destroyer accompanied the Impeccable, an unarmed ship designed to track submarines, in the same area, the official said.

Since Sunday’s high-seas standoff, there have been no incidents of harassment from Chinese boats or aircraft, he said.

In response, the Chinese have now sortied the China Yuzheng 311.

China sends large patrol boat to South China Sea

China has deployed a large fisheries patrol boat to a group of disputed islands in the South China Sea, a state newspaper said Sunday, a week after a U.S. Navy vessel and Chinese ships had a confrontation in those waters.

The Beijing News said the vessel, China Yuzheng 311, would reach the Paracel Islands on Sunday to patrol China’s exclusive economic zone and strengthen fishery administration in the South China Sea.

The ship, a converted Chinese naval rescue vessel, was deployed Tuesday from Guangzhou in southern China, it said. Calls to China’s Fisheries Administration rang unanswered Sunday.

Fishery administration my ass! Although little is known (at least unclassified information) about the Yuzheng 311, at 113.5 meters long and 15.5 meters wide and at 4,450 tonnes, you can bet it’s bristling with signals intelligence gear that has absolutely nothing to do with monitoring Chinese fisheries. You can also bet that there will be armed Chinese escorts in the vicinity.

And so, we’ll see how far this game of Chicken escalates an/or which side backs down first, if any.

See also:
T-AGOS 23 Impeccable Swath-L (Large) Ocean Surveillance Ship
Surveillance Towed-Array Sensor System (SURTASS)
AN/UQQ-2 Surveillance Towed-Array Sensor System (SURTASS)
Obama calls for more military talks with China
Obama, China seek calm as sea dispute grinds on
Despite Ship Incident, China Calls for Cooperative Ties with US
China’s Naval Secrets
Secret Sanya – China’s new nuclear naval base revealed
China’s secret underground naval base at Sanya-Yulin
China builds new nuclear submarine base
Type 094 Jin-class Ballistic Missile Submarine
Type 094 (Jin Class) Nuclear-Powered Missile Submarine
Jin class Ballistic missile submarine
Two More Chinese SSBNs Spotted
JL-2 (CSS-NX-4)
JL-2 (CSS-NX-4)
CSS-NX-5 (JL-2)
JuLang-2 (CSS-NX-4) Submarine-Launched Ballistic Missile
USS Chung-Hoon (DDG 93)
Beijing raises stakes with tit-for-tat deployment in South China Sea
Surveillance vessel out on patrol
Special Economic Zone

/oh, and if Hainan Island rings a bell or sounds vaguely familiar, it should