China’s ban on virtual private networks (VPN) prompts this ChinaFile conversation between global experts on the potential outfall from Beijing’s latest pullback on citizens’ online access. According to award-winning journalist George Chen: “These days, the government is keen to regulate everything it hates and promote everything it likes with new legislation or renewed enforcement. That’s what the rule of law Chinese-style is all about.”
It will now be the turn of Germany — more likely, individual German taxpayers — to take on the role of suckers.
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.
After three months of ‘enforced disappearance’, Huang Kaiping, has been returned to his home in Beijing. Front Line Defenders reports.
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.
The brutal treatment of champions of freedom is a stark reminder that market reforms are not enough to serve as the foundation of a free society. Atlas Network reports.
The constant stream of news coverage on China’s water crisis hasn’t dampened Beijing’s bid to host the 2022 winter Olympics and the production of a key, water-guzzling component of that bid: snow. The Economist reports.
China’s new environmental protection law is not enough without robust implementation mechanisms, accountability regimes and institutional arrangements. This report for the science journal Nature identifies four gaps that will cause challenges for the new law.
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.
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.
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.
A US-based colleague of detained Chinese activist, Guo Yushan, reflects on Guo’s formal arrest earlier this month.
A new study of China’s approach to water scarcity, co-authored by a consortium of British, Chinese, and American universities, has deemed the country’s massive South-to-North Water Transfer project an example of “pouring good water after bad”.
The Chinese government’s $97-billion pledge to clean up the country’s dire water situation has afforded foreign water firms market opportunities typically denied them in the past. Even so, roadblocks still prevail as China continues to put the breaks on importing the international expertise it needs to help with its water recovery.
This spotlight on mega-dams of note, profiled by International Rivers’ Peter Bosshard for The Guardian, lists more banes than boons with a quest Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first prime minister, famously described as the “disease of gigantism.”