Tags: china | olympics | regime

China's Veil of Olympic Freedom Belies a Rigid Regime

Thursday, 03 Jul 2008 10:09 AM

By Lev Navrozov

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In 1986, the “supreme leader” of China founded Project 863 to develop super weapons in seven fields.

Project 863 was an advanced scientific-technological development not only by Chinese standards, but by world standards as well. In scientific-technological research, it is important to determine the value of a development, including its genius, if any.

It is common knowledge that many inventions and discoveries failed to be understood in due time. Project 863 was created to determine the genius of a new discovery/invention, or reject it as not worth any further attention.

It is useful to compare Project 863 with the construction done currently for the Beijing Olympic Games and reported by a “dissident magazine,” known as The Epoch Times.

The magazine is polite to the dictatorship of China. As well it should be: The dictatorship will concentrate on its total annihilation even though it is published outside China.

Nevertheless the magazine is useful. Last May it published a report on the construction work for the Beijing Olympic Games. The ironic title given by the Epoch to its report was, “Is China Building the Next-Generation Police States?”

The Beijing Olympic Games are games, plays, entertainments, not nano super weapons, endorsed by Project 863. The authorities reported that they had uncovered a terror plot to kidnap Beijing Olympic athletes. Terrible! But is it true?

The absence of publicity, free speech, and legal justice converts the Beijing Olympic Games into a cluster of conspiracies. As The Epoch Times put it, “35 people were arrested for plotting to kidnap athletes, journalists, other visitors.”

The magazine speaks of new and potent combinations of the most powerful political tools of “authoritarian communism” — central planning, merciless repression, constant surveillance — harnessed to advance “market Stalinism.”

The goal of Beijing Olympic Games is to demonstrate that China is as peaceful as the free West. Give China a little more of that freedom of the free West and you will see. But the irony is that this is impossible.

Different aspects of freedom begin to clash, requiring the reduction of the “unusual level of freedom in China” in order to keep those aspects from clashing and to create the “next-generation police state.”

The key danger to the dictators of China is that aspect of general physical freedom that enables the ordinary population to get a glimpse of life of ordinary population in the West and conclude that it is better (and the dictatorship should be overthrown). Even if it is not better, a convict (especially a “lifer”!) is inclined to conclude that life outside the prison is incomparably better.

Part of this yearning for freedom is instinctive. Recall all living beings trying to obtain or regain their freedom. It is necessary for the dictatorship of China to create for the Beijing Olympic Games a semblance of physical freedom or partial physical freedom. But with human beings this does not work.

A bird released from a cage, flies for its natural environment, and a released wild animal runs for it as well. A human being understands freedom not as the possibility to fly or run away into the wilderness, but as the possibility of personal independence of behavior. But the personal independence of behavior of the Chinese may seem dangerous to the dictatorship of China. Or there may be no consensus among rank-and-file Chinese. What Citizen “A” does may seem heroic to Citizen “B,” useless to Citizen “C,” or harmful to Citizen “D.”

The instructions for the Chinese at the Beijing Olympic Games: “Behave as though you are free and thus let the entire world see that we are free” turn out to be infinitely complicated, since the notion of behavior “as though one is free” differs from person to person, and different participants of this pretense may interfere with one another.

It is not for nothing that the Olympic Games themselves have rules. But there are no such rules in the construction work for the Beijing Olympic Games.

Thirty years ago, a Beijing Olympics Games city known as Shenzhen did not exist. Over the past two years, some 200,000 surveillance cameras have been installed throughout the city. Many of these cameras are disguised. Chinese “security executives” predict they will make the city the most watched city in the world.

So the city will be like a giant prison camera. Separate prisons are surely unnecessary. China will be a single prison. But while a century ago, West-European and American prisons could lack even electricity, the countrywide Chinese prison will be a miracle of the latest engineering, and here even Project 863 can play its part.

We have been used to evaluate our lives by technological progress.

There have been obvious exceptions. Thus, after his defeat at Moscow, Hitler was afraid that his subordinates would betray him to “the Anglo-Saxons” in order to save themselves. So he ordered his subordinates to begin the “final solution” for Jews, without mentioning the fact that it was his order.

With that scientific and technological equipment, Hitler’s subordinates could carry out the “final solution,” that is, the annihilation, of mankind.

Similarly, the dictatorship of China can annihilate all mankind except the population of China or except the dictatorship of China.

Is this why the Western statesmen should attend the Beijing Olympic Games and rejoice that the Chinese city of Shenzhen will soon be “the most watched city in the world”?

The annihilation of mankind, its “final solution,” does not require the symbols of war, whether new or old. Nor do the U.S. (or any other) presidential debates prevent the annihilation of mankind by their good intentions, with which the road to hell is said to be paved.

You can e-mail me at navlev@cloud9.net.

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