Top Story – Communist Chinese regime moving against the US on space and cyber fronts: The Chinese Communist Party “is moving full speed ahead with its race to space, while other nations — including the United States — have entered yawn status” (Washington Times). Professor John Hickman of Berry College says the CCP could even become “the world’s pre-eminent spacefaring power” and called on the US to avoid losing the space race “by default.” Meanwhile, a CCP-military-backed hackers group came back into the spotlight when it “stole information from U.S. businesses and government targets” (Epoch Times), although apparently the regime is a little weak on defense in this regard (Washington Times).
Whoops! Regime prints, then deletes, Bo Xilai’s claim of Party collusion with some of his actions: The “show” part of Bo Xilai’s show trail came in stark relief as the trial concluded (ABC News):
As a Chinese court poured out details from disgraced politician Bo Xilai’s trial, it released two transcripts that accidentally revealed the limits of China’s rare display of judicial openness.
The first, the original, mentioned a claim from Bo that his superiors had told him to cover up an aide’s disappearance. That transcript was soon replaced with one that made no mention of the claim, or of Bo’s Communist Party bosses.
Beijing was happy to let Bo call a former police chief a liar, or his wife mentally ill, as prosecutors described his alleged individual economic and administrative misdeeds. But that redaction shows how focused the party leadership was on keeping itself out of the proceedings.
The trial has been a good stage for my Three Rules for Interpreting Corruption Charges in Communist China: 1) The charges are politically driven by factionalism; 2) Despite that, they’re probably true; and 3) The cadres pushing the prosecution have done (or are doing) far worse than anything the defendant did.
A terrorist cell or a prayer group? Locals differ with Communists in account of killings in occupied East Turkestan: The CCP is claiming another triumph against terrorists in northwestern East Turkestan (occupied by the regime in 1949 and renamed “Xinjiang”), killing 15 of them. The only trouble is…locals saw it very, very differently (Epoch Times):
While the police maintain that the group was training for terrorist acts, locals present a different story. One Yilkiqi resident, whose name is withheld, said that the group was gathered for prayer.
“When they gathered in the desert and were praying together, they were surrounded and fired on. There were 26 people there and all of them were killed. The police, instead of carrying the bodies to the village, buried them all in the desert using a bulldozer,” he told RFA.
Another anonymous local said he goes to the desert so he can pray without the Communists trying to get between him and God.
Other Human Rights News: A petition on behalf of a jailed Falun Gong practitioner in Tianjin gets over 800 signatures (Epoch Times). The Long Arm of Lawlessness reaches out to snuff an anti-Communist event in Germany (Epoch Times).
Communist economic statistics off by a trillion dollars: Gordon Chang cites Christopher Balding, an associate professor at the HSBC Business School at Peking University whose work on hidden inflation in the Communist Chinese economic figures reveals growth levels almost a third lower than stated and an overall economy “more than a trillion dollars smaller” than reported. Chang then delves into the implications, particularly regarding the debt/GDP ratio:
Beijing says its debt-to-GDP ratio at the end of 2012 was about 40 percent. That is considered manageable, but the real number is undoubtedly higher because Beijing excludes substantial obligations—and because it is inflating its GDP by understating inflation. Some believe the ratio, properly calculated, is actually north of 200 percent (America’s, by comparison, was a scary 102.9 percent at the end of last year). If Balding is correct, then the ratio is worse, and China is on the edge of a monumental debt crisis.
Ouch!! As Chang himself says to conclude, “If we knew what China’s economic output really was, we would better understand that the country is headed into a debt crisis from which it may not recover this decade.” No doubt.