China’s Elite Echo Language Of Mao To Sing The Praises Of Their “Leader And Helmsman”
Nectar Gan, South China Morning Post
Chinese politicians gathering in Beijing for the Communist Party congress are mincing no words in their praise of President Xi Jinping, heaping unofficial titles that hark back to the Mao Zedong era on him and glorifying his achievements with gushing superlatives. While it is not clear how the president responds to the flattery, at least three members of the decision-making Politburo, two generals and eight provincial party bosses have addressed Xi as the “lingxiu”—a reverent Chinese term for “leader.”
Chinese Official Says Xi’s Anticorruption Drive Prevented Coup Attempt
Bill Ide, VOA
A top official in China has praised President Xi Jinping’s expansive anti-corruption drive, arguing it has helped stop coup plotters from threatening the party’s tight grip on power. Chinese officials have previously talked about the threat that “plotters,” “cliques” and “conspirators” pose to the party, but the remarks from Liu Shiyu, chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, were the clearest to date.
Nationwide Crackdown On Chinese Christian Churches During Party Congress
As the ruling Chinese Communist Party gathers for its five-yearly congress in Beijing, authorities in southern and southwestern China have slapped a travel ban on a number of Christian believers, while preventing others from meeting for worship, sources said. Members of the Autumn Rain Blessing Church in Chengdu, capital of southwestern Sichuan province, said several of their fellow believers had been prevented from attending a Protestant Christian symposium in Hong Kong.
Propaganda Battles Pop Culture for Young Chinese Hearts And Minds
When the propaganda film The Founding of an Army hit theaters in China recently, the reaction wasn’t quite what the ruling Communist Party might have hoped for. Instead of inspiring an outpouring of nationalism and self-sacrifice for the state, it was roundly mocked for trying to lure a younger audience by casting teen idols as revolutionary party leaders.
Graffiti Set Design Adds Punch to Cuba Theater Festival
A play parodying the lengths some Cubans will go to in order to earn a few tourist dollars set against the backdrop of socially critical graffiti is adding punch to Havana’s annual theater festival. The first-time collaboration between veteran theater director Nelda Castillo, 64, and street artist Yulier Rodriguez, 27, underscores unease among some Cubans with the recent influx of tourists on the cash-strapped, communist-run island.
Total Number Of US Victims In Cuba Attacks Rises To 24
Josh Lederman, Associated Press
The United States says two more government workers are confirmed victims in the unexplained Cuba attacks. The State Department is increasing the official tally from 22 to 24. But State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert says the new victims “do not reflect new attacks.” She says the additional victims were confirmed following medical evaluations of workers attacked earlier in the year.
How Many Defectors Escape North Korea And Why Don’t We Hear More From Them?
Hollie McKay, Fox News
How many North Korea defectors are there, and where do they go? Since the hostilities of the Korean War ended in 1953, an estimated 300,000 North Koreans have defected from the tightly controlled hermit country. According to statistics from the Human Freedom Initiative at the Bush Institute, there are approximately 225 North Korean refugees that have been directly granted asylum in the United States since the North Korean Human Rights Act of 2004.
Researchers Have Found An Unexpected Axis Of North Korea’s Cyber Activity
Josh Horwitz, Quartz
India and a handful of other countries are unwittingly aiding North Korea as it carries out cyberattacks against its enemies. The New York Times last week reported how Kim Jong-un’s regime has ramped up its cyberwarfare capabilities, creating an army of 6,000 hackers to obtain military intelligence, launch denial-of-service attacks, and steal potentially billions of dollars from foreign countries. Earlier this month a South Korean law maker announced that its neighbor had last year hacked and stolen war plans prepared with the US.
Russia Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny Released From Prison
Saphora Smith, Reuters
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny announced his release from jail Sunday by posting a selfie on Instagram and offering an upbeat account of his time behind bars. Navalny uploaded a picture of himself leaving the detention center after 20 days in jail, saying he had read 20 books, learned several words in the Kyrgyz language and drunk 80 liters of tea. “Ready for work,” he wrote before announcing a rally in Astrakhan, a southern Russian city on the banks on the River Volga.
Why One Of The Best Restaurants In Los Angeles Is Fighting For Human Rights
Andy Wang, Food & Wine
“Good evening, everyone. I am a refugee from Vietnam.” This is how Cassia co-owner Kim Luu-Ng began her October 6 speech at a PBS event about the Vietnam War. Things got heavier from there. She talked about how her soldier father stepped on a landmine that somehow didn’t detonate and how he later survived being captured and tortured. She revealed how her family fled Vietnam by boat, how her mother’s milk ran dry on the journey, how her sister almost starved to death, how both her parents later died young from extremely rare cancers that might or might not have been linked to chemical warfare.
World Health Organization Revokes Appointment Of Mugabe As “Goodwill Ambassador”
The head of the World Health Organization revoked his appointment of Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe as a “goodwill ambassador” on Sunday after the choice drew widespread outrage and criticism. Zimbabwe’s government said it respected the turnabout and that the UN health agency “benefited tremendously” from the attention. WHO director-general Tedros Ghebreyesus last week told a conference in Uruguay on non-communicable diseases that Mugabe, who was present, had agreed to be a “goodwill ambassador” on the issue.
ON THIS DAY IN HISTORY
October 23rd, 1956: 20,000 Hungarian protestors gather at the statue of József Bem and call for independence, officially beginning the Hungarian Revolution of 1956.
October 23rd, 1991: The UN-mediated Paris Peace Agreements officially end the Cambodian-Vietnamese War and create a postcommunist transitional government in Cambodia.