The legacy of "Yellowbird" inspires unlikely new networks to transport dissidents to freedom
Among china's greatest art treasures are the Buddhist caves near Dunhuang, an oasis on the fabled Silk Road that once linked China and Europe. Their ancient frescoes, sculptures, and other relics date as far back as A.D. 430 and have survived wars, environmental damage, antiquities hunters, and the chaotic Cultural Revolution. But their biggest threat today is tourism.
"Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun," Mao Zedong once famously said. Though China's post-Mao leaders have struggled to keep the military brass under tight civilian control, in recent months, as factions have divided the leadership of the Communist Party, political rivals have vied for military support.
It's probably best not to even try making sense of Beijing's pronouncements on the 14th Dalai Lama and other Tibetan spiritual leaders: you'll only make your head hurt. Last week the officially atheist Chinese government's State Administration for Religious Affairs disclosed plans to enact a new law forbidding the 75-year-old Buddhist deity to be reborn anywhere but on Chinese-controlled soil, and giving final say to Chinese authorities when the time comes to identify his 15th incarnation.
Parallels between Tahrir Square in 2011 and Tiananmen Square in 1989 haven't been lost on China's media censors. Last week two of the nation's biggest Internet portals, Sina.com and NetEase.com, blocked keyword searches of the word "Egypt." So did Weibo, China's Twitter equivalent. (China's Great Firewall already blocks access to the real Twitter, as well as Facebook and YouTube.) The party warned that websites refusing to censor comments about Egypt would be "shut down by force."
"Chinese moms" in China aren't raising superior kids, actually. U.S. author Amy Chua's book "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother"—and The Wall Street Journal extract of her memoir headlined "Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior"—has sparked huge debate inside China.