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Monday, April 28, 2008

Berlin 36 Beijing 08

I was at the pro-China rally in Aotea Square yesterday... observing. They had their banners and placards out, but here's what I was thinking in bold:

Beijing 2008
Berlin 1936

One World - One Dream - One China
Ein Welt - Ein Traum - Ein Deutschland

Tibet is was and always will be Chinese
Austria is was and always will be German

Don't trust the Dalai Llama
Don't trust the Poles

Taiwan supports China
Czechoslovakia supports Germany


And the Sky kiwi tent (Der Stürmer tent) helping to whip up patriotic fervour was up front and the Chinese government agents (Nazi agents) were no doubt lurking in the crowd. That's what I saw.

The rallying masses were predominantly younger Chinese, most likely students, with a few families groups as well. Given I only saw a single person smoking during the whole torrid event I would also say they were the educated upper echelons rather than of the peasant type Chinese classes. The majority were not overtly political, or I thought, even aware of the political overtones of their demonstration - they were naive patriots by and large. Reactionary and defensive it was, but that was not the feeling of the crowd, and despite the negative tone of some of the messages, and despite the thousands of ethnic Chinese in the middle of my home town being rabidly, fervently, nationalistically Chinese, I never felt threatened or alarmed. Just disappointed really. Others however will feel very differently. All of those negative signs were in English so that we could read them let us not forget. This rally was also for our benefit.

If you had grown up under a one party state where your politically-connected parents have grown wealthy through that system so they could afford to send you to Auckland to study commerce then you would probably think the regime's a benevolent or at least necessary force too. And like foreign cultures in our midst sometimes they do things collectively that are completely inappropriate or baffling. The Chinese are utterly unaware of their public relations disaster. It may be normal in China to stage these rallies, but in this country - when you are a guest in someone else's country that is to say - you don't mass in the main square of the biggest city and proclaim that your regime of infamous brutality is misunderstood and that the opposition elements and non-regime media are all evil liars.

The funniest sign was "Stop politicising the Olympics" Yeah, because a mass pro-China rally where angry messages against the enemies of the Chinese Communist regime are displayed isn't political is it? Only in the Chinese mind it seems. Like patriotic Germans who may have done the same thing in '36, they are deluded. They are victims, they are pawns, they are the fortunate few of the would-be ruling classes.

Ben Thomas will post some pictures he took soon.

----UPDATE----
Skykiwi article on the rally with pictures:
overseas Chinese students from New Zealand initiated the support of the Beijing Olympic
[...]
Although this is the form of assembly, but many people take part in spontaneous demonstrations in the square, shouting "China Come on!" Slogans, the crowd in the square in a while and set off a while the "human wave", the Aotea Square, support for China's support Ciqibila the voice of the Olympics, has never stopped, a conservative estimate, the presence of the highest number could reach 5,000 people.

Typically unselfconscious reportage from a sponsoring website.

21 Comments:

At 28/4/08 11:50 am, Anonymous exclamation Mark said...

LOL!! That article has some of the best example of 'Engrish" I have seen for a while:

Along with passionate singing, assembly into one after another climax

the square has gathered more than 1,000 people, they spontaneously put on a red coat or printed with the words of support for China's Olympic T-Shirt.

TVNZ: Auckland red diffuse large rain-fed enthusiasm of Chinese people do not put out

Chinese people do not put out? The storks must have been working overtime for the past couple of decades then...

 
At 28/4/08 11:51 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"when you are a guest in someone else's country that is to say - you don't mass in the main square of the biggest city and proclaim that your regime of infamous brutality is misunderstood and that the opposition elements and non-regime media are all evil liars."

I wish all of those hamas supporting pro-palestinian protesters would take notice of this statement. It's getting rather tiresome.

 
At 28/4/08 11:55 am, Blogger Bomber said...

...
I wish all of those hamas supporting pro-palestinian protesters would take notice of this statement. It's getting rather tiresome.

Almost as tiresome as pointing out the differences between the Chinese Communist Regime and Hamas as a resistance movement that was democratically elected.

 
At 28/4/08 12:19 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Chinese suxs. They are wores liars than the Americans.

 
At 28/4/08 12:29 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I tell you what though. I happened to be in town and knew nothing about the rally. (I was sent into town to buy a pair of black pants for a dinner party that night.) I went into Just Jeans and was trying on a pair when the place was stormed by a heaps of young Chinese people waving banners and flags shouting "One China! One China! One China!" They got so excited they began knocking clothes off shelves and hangers before storming out and down the street. I couldn't believe it!
Macca.

 
At 28/4/08 12:33 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't this the democracy system that the western world wants to impose onto China. Freedom of speech and Freedom of protest.

These Chinese students are just practising what the western world preaches. Protesting for their rights.

We should support them for expressing their rights and hopefully when they return to China they will share this experience and the good idea of protesting with their compatriots.

If the pro-tibetans are allowed to protest, so why not the pro-China protestors.

Stop whining about this!

 
At 28/4/08 12:40 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The western world is pressing for free Tibet. Some years ago they also press for free East Timor. But what happen to East Timor today, is it a better place or country? Are the people of East Timor any happier, richer or peaceful? In my opinion it is no better off, instead it is worst off.

While there may be issues of freedom in Tibet at least it is not war torn, it has the highest GDP growth among all the provinces in China and the people live peacefully.

 
At 28/4/08 12:56 pm, Blogger Paul said...

What the hell is "one china" supposed to mean anyway? That sea of red looks like a fucking invasion.

 
At 28/4/08 1:05 pm, Blogger Paul said...

Oh yeah, the other thing I wanted to say: freedom of speech means freedom to criticize. What rights do you think their protesting for? The right oppress their own people? The right to annex other countries? The right to storm clothes shops and disrupt business?

 
At 28/4/08 1:33 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

So how about the western countries right to invade Iraq and Afghanistan? Is that ok too!

Tibet has been part of China for more than 400 years longer than when the European took over America from the Red Indians, longer than when the European took over NZ from the Maoris. So what gives the right of the European taking over these countries?

Why not have a Free Aoteroa movement to return Aoteroa to the Maoris? So what will the Pakeha say then. Asking China to return Tibet to the Tibetans is like asking Aoteroa to be return to the Maoris.

Will NZ accept a secession of the Hawkes bay to the Tuhoe? If not why China has to accept a secession of its territory too.

 
At 28/4/08 1:49 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes Anon (1.33pm), reasonable point. But let's take a considered look at how China treats the Tibetans and how New Zealand treats the Maori. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_rights_in_the_People%27s_Republic_of_China. Like apples and oranges.

 
At 28/4/08 1:53 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good point from anon 1.33.

We should be aware that its only in the last 30 years that there has been a move toward indigenous rights.

How are you gonna handle that big guy?

 
At 28/4/08 1:59 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh yeah! so now the western world decides to preach about its high morality of non-opression.

Try talking to an australian aborgines about non-oppression by westerner or to older maoris about the ban imposed on them from speaking their own language in the public in the early days of colonisation.

So the western world has all the fun of oppressing other people and now decides to change the rule that other people are not allow to do so.

Sounds like the pot calling the kettle black.

The west has no right of preaching non-oppression, it is the biggest oppressor in the 20th century.

 
At 28/4/08 2:14 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

THE ONLY FUCKING INDOCTRINATION GOING ON IS HAPPENING HERE IN THE PC UNI!

 
At 28/4/08 2:29 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Awesome multicultural smackdown.

crazed jihadist ragheads, commie slanteyes and inbred redneck crackers abound on tumeke.

Actually anon 1.33 I made a mistake and though that bomber wrote this but it's actually tim who I believe supports maori rights.

 
At 28/4/08 2:50 pm, Anonymous T said...

Hey anon 1:59, maybe'the west' should have left you to the Greater Asian Co-Prosperity Sphere c1937...

 
At 28/4/08 5:13 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL @ 2:50's comment. Maybe you hit the mark and 1:59 is Chinese but I wouldn't want to bet on it. You can find self hating westerners who will preach that same sermon at any uni campus in NZ. Or just listen to Bomber.

 
At 28/4/08 5:23 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

like my great aunty said, never trust anyone you can blindfold with a shoelace.....

 
At 28/4/08 5:49 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL at anon 5.23

Well I guess to add salt to the fire...2 trains collide in China today killing many. Do you trust 'em?

Although this may be a little off track, how often do we hear of these accidents. Planes, trains, buses... I do know that these accidents can happen anywhere in any country, but somehow these accidents seem to occur more often in Chinese countries.

 
At 28/4/08 7:29 pm, Blogger Bomber said...

...
So how about the western countries right to invade Iraq and Afghanistan? Is that ok too!
No it is not and I've protested against both those wars and the West invading them.

Tibet has been part of China for more than 400 years longer than when the European took over America from the Red Indians, longer than when the European took over NZ from the Maoris. So what gives the right of the European taking over these countries?
We have a signed treaty with Maori in NZ that both parties are still trying to fulfill and understand, this seems to be a different approach than the invasion and repression of Tibet by China, oh it's both a form of colonialism but only one is currently involved in a cultural genocide.

Why not have a Free Aoteroa movement to return Aoteroa to the Maoris? So what will the Pakeha say then. Asking China to return Tibet to the Tibetans is like asking Aoteroa to be return to the Maoris.
Well no it isn't, Tibet is in Tibet, Pakeha and Maori live in NZ, in NZ a country is shared, in Tibet China oppresses the entire country.

Will NZ accept a secession of the Hawkes bay to the Tuhoe? If not why China has to accept a secession of its territory too.
Well they need to talk to Tuhoe especially because Tuhoe never signed the Treaty - there are certainly issues and bouts of racist heavy handedness, we are in no way perfect in NZ - but sweet Jesus we are several thousand miles away from the bench mark China sets for human rights abuses, and if you are unable to appreciate the gap between the two we are wasting eachothers time.

Oh yeah! so now the western world decides to preach about its high morality of non-opression.
Try talking to an australian aborgines about non-oppression by westerner or to older maoris about the ban imposed on them from speaking their own language in the public in the early days of colonisation.
So the western world has all the fun of oppressing other people and now decides to change the rule that other people are not allow to do so.
Sounds like the pot calling the kettle black.
The west has no right of preaching non-oppression, it is the biggest oppressor in the 20th century.


Very good post, you are absolutely right, the West has been a major hypocrite in regards to Human Rights, I've detailed many, many instances of such hypocracy on this site every day of the week - and have always argued that we need to be extra critical of the US because if we cant get the defenders of democracy to play by the rules, how can we get the real abusers like Russia and China to play by the rules - your points are well noted and true - but that in no way defends the unjustfiable support China hands out to dispicable regimes that are causing mass suffering and atrocities and our criticism in NZ has none of it's truth removed by your critique of the West.

 
At 28/4/08 8:26 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Chinese people have gained a lot of freedom in recent times and we in the west have lost a lot of freedom recently, mainly because of ridiculous terrorism laws. So they're getting better and we're getting worse.

And Bomber for what you said about the south island, fuck off or apologise you conceited cunt.

 

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