Wednesday 1 September 2004

A Century of Progress

Germany, 1901 :
In spite of the fact that we have no such fleet as we should have, we have conquered for ourselves a place in the sun. It will now be my task to see to it that this place in the sun shall remain our undisputed possession, in order that the sun's rays may fall fruitfully upon our activity and trade in foreign parts, that our industry and agriculture may develop within the state and our sailing sports upon the water, for our future lies upon the water. The more Germans go out upon the waters, whether it be in races or regattas, whether it be in journeys across the ocean, or in the service of the battle flag, so much the better it will be for us.

China, 1996 :
A generation of Chinese has totally and uncritically absorbed Western, particularly American, values. Lately, however, the tide has begun to turn. More and more people in China are looking East instead of West to find a future. Because of the growth of the Chinese economy and the legacy of China's rich cultural traditions, many of us maintain that China should aspire to take its place as a world power instead of lamely emulating Western society as, for example, Japan has.
Critics of China Can Say No have noted that we make no secret of our appreciation of Vladimir Zhirinovsky, the Russian nationalist.
No doubt our views on Taiwan will worry the Americans and some people in Taiwan because we encourage Chinese youth to prepare to solve the Taiwan issue by force. The theory that the people of Taiwan have the right to determine their own political future is "absurd." This is not meant to be a provocation, only a reaction to the arrogance of the American Congress who think it is their vocation to "protect" Taiwan
At the end of the 20th century, China has once again become a world power in its own right. It need not play second fiddle to anyone. The next generation coming to power in China is prepared to say no and won't hesitate to do so when it is in our interests.

As for Zhiranovsky?
He advocates, inter alia, the re-incorporation of the former Soviet republics and Alaska and Iran through the use of military force. He has also praised Adolf Hitler's rule and encouraged the use of nuclear weapons against possible adversaries.

I hope the Chinese article is a minority opinion.

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