Yang Zili and the paranoid regime

Xiao Shu in this piece comparing the 2001 incarceration of fellow Chinese journalist, Yang Zili, and his colleagues today from the Transition Institute, explores the deeper psychological cause driving the country’s “stability-obsessed regime:” a paranoia so institutionalized that it drives state power compulsively. A must read.

Five years after earthquake, Haiti’s journalists show resilience amid threats to freedom of the press

Divided before the earthquake of 2010, the disaster united Haiti’s media landscape out of necessity and in the face of a strong adversary in the administration of President Michel Martelly. Nowadays, that landscape is facing a tight squeeze from a government opposed to press freedom and moneyed NGOs with communication agendas that outnumber the country’s news organizations 10 to 1. Shearon Roberts for Journalism in the Americas reports.

China’s environmental enforcement glitch

Wikimedia Commons/ Tobixen

Declaring “war on pollution” is just the first step, writes Elizabeth Economy in this terrific piece for ChinaFile on the need for Beijing to invest more in the fundamentals of environmental protection: the enforcement of regulations and the necessary human and financial resources to those on the front-line of clawing back blue skies and clean water for China.

Looking forward to the moment when you return: Zhou Qinghui to Huang Kaiping

Kaiping and Qinghui: "I hope that I’ll run into you on the subway, that I’ll run into you on the street on my way home, that I’ll run into you at the entrance to our housing estate."

As China continues its crackdown on reform-minded scholars and civil liberties, the wife of yet another detained member of the respected Beijing-based think tank, Transition Institute, has spoken out in an open letter circulated online. Reaching out to her husband, Huang Kaiping, in the only way she now can, Zhou Qinghui recounts in vivid voice their first meeting, as fifth graders, up until the current day’s events, cast in shadow by the question mark of an uncertain future under a repressive regime.

Just one more foreign investor

Much has been written about China in Africa — China’s #1 spot as Africa’s biggest trading partner, its massive investment in infrastructure development across the continent, its hands-off approach to domestic politics — but is talk of China’s domination in Africa overdone? The Economist reports.

Five years after the earthquake, Haiti remains on unsteady ground

Members of KOPI, a grassroots organization made up of four local groups to press the Haitian government for transparency and community participation in its development plans for the island of Ile-a-Vache, Haiti, meet together on the island. Allison Shelley/The GroundTruth Project

Thousands of Haitians continue to live in tent camps five years on after a deadly earthquake brought an already struggling nation to its knees. This update by Jacob Kushner for the GlobalPost gets at the core of the country’s ongoing struggle for stability despite donor aid in the billions: as long as Haiti remains without property rights, the rule of law and a constitutional government, chaos will hobble recovery.