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China stuns the world

Published Aug 20, 2008 10:32 PM

Chinese athletes, children, artists and choreographers, 15,000 performers and an abundant display of new technology since the opening of the Beijing Olympics have stunned billions of people around the world. The transnational imperialist-dominated media have left most people unaware of the tremendous progress made in the world’s most populous country since the earthshaking revolution led by Mao Zedong’s Communist Party in 1949, less than 60 years ago.

Perhaps the most shaken up were the U.S. media professionals themselves—that’s a nice way of saying paid propagandists—who were rendered speechless by the opening ceremony. When these pundits got their act together, they were still reduced to nit-picking about the age of Chinese gymnasts and some debatable decisions about lip-synching a song and technologically enhancing some fireworks. Hollywood and U.S. television use these techniques on a regular basis; only rarely are they made an issue.

Then there were the stories about the difficulties applying for a protest permit in Beijing. One New York Times op-ed analyst applied for his own protest permit. We recommend he apply for such a permit in Denver or in St. Paul in an attempt to get close to the national conventions of the Democrats and Republicans. Protest organizers in those cities need a team of lawyers to get anywhere near the conventions and still face threats from tanks, tear gas, lasers, water cannon, and rubber and lead bullets.

And the reasons for protesting here are so much more compelling, as the conventions will be filled with war criminals like George W. Bush and Dick Cheney, who have ordered illegal foreign occupations and destructions of entire countries while they abandoned New Orleans’ Black population, persecuted immigrants and destroyed the environment at home. That’s only a partial list of their crimes.

You might think that the corporate media’s analysts would try to credit China’s progress solely to its decision to allow in foreign investment and private capital. These pro-capitalist hacks recognize, however, that something else is behind the massive show of Chinese confidence. They see that “kow-towing” to Western rulers is in the dustbin of history.

A hundred years ago, though China still had 5,000 years of civilization behind it, foreign imperialist ruling classes with far less history but more powerful weapons and a stronger industrial and financial base enslaved China’s people.

It took more than technological improvements to turn this situation around. Nor was it done through the good will of China’s foreign rulers. A revolution lasting decades, led by the Chinese Communist Party, not only pushed out foreign imperialist invaders and exploiters but mobilized hundreds of millions of Chinese peasants and workers, women and men in the effort to build socialism. This revolution turned the Chinese people into conscious actors on the world scene, soldiers and organizers who could liberate their nation and shake the world in 1949, just as the performers on Aug. 8 this year stunned the billions watching on television screens.