Attention magnet!

22 09 2012

what a color..

..a way to shout that the Senkako.. ops, I mean, Diaoyu islands are Chinese.. and still be “cool”! 😉

For once, in these days of riot, I can find something funny.. and fruity (point 2. here)!

Contradictions in the protest!

20 09 2012

(Potentially a “funny thing of the day”, but the facts are too violent for tagging in this way) Digging around, after having being told a few facts from Chinese students, that got them from Chinese microblogging, not the so called balanced free international press.. that only now is catching on the situation!

And among the things I have heard from locals I finally found an English blogger writing about, in the post “The Unfortunate Irony of Anti-Japanese Protests”. The images are actually running in the local social networks, and then leaking over the wall..

Unfortunately most of comments of such blog (Americans?) do not get the gravity of the situation:

Most of the people in this video use Jaspanese cameras and in the Chinese Weibo it is also shown some of the mob wearing clearly Japanese-manga cartoon t-shirts!

The police cars were attacked because Japanese brands.. quite uninterested the policemen, but I was glad to see that when the army corps came the attitude toward the mob changed a bit!

It is true though that for the majority the idea of a national boycott of Japan and Japanese product is just crazy, or merely impossible (note the blanked out picture of the Chinese writer of the article at the link: trust me when I say that over here it can be very dangerous to say the wrong thing about Japan to the wrong person..).

On the other hand I read today that several travel agencies stop selling tickets to Japan, even advertising that on their doors, for sure to avoid problems with fired-up idiots in the parades.

Update of China-Japan crisis

19 09 2012

As previously mentioned, especially surprised by the lack of info of international media, the crisis effect are strong even in smaller realities than Shanghai or Beijing.

I got interesting comments from different realities: Drew, Chinese-American, and LeeJ, Australian (I think!) with also a good knowledge about Asia.

From what I am seeing and what I have learned in my two and half years in China, I fear that this situation would have been bad even if Japan had got already a more official apologetic position about the massacre in Nanjing and their occupation. Even being in love with Japan, I felt so strong emotions when visiting the memorial. Every human being would.

So many reasons for China for hating Japan.. but besides the war past, there is always the feeling of inferiority that China suffers from the tiny neighbor islands of Japanese archipelago.

Yesterday, September 18th, it was the 81st anniversary of the Japanese occupation in China: the Mukden incident that started Manchuria occupation was another pretext for strong protests against Japan, in Beijing and everywhere in China.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon with 潘蕾 in one commercial area not far from my home. We had lunch in a chain Japanese noodle restaurant, owned by a Chinese business man: the light sing outside, after the price of specials, was making very clear that even if they serve ramen they are supporting China in the struggle! China-Japan crisis
Similarly a toy shop, with typical Japanese cartoon stuffed toys felt the obligation to emphasize that the islands are Chinese (after seeing several people destroying Japanese cars or attacking place of interest for Japan). China-Japan crisis

Walking around in the area then, in fron a quite nice hotel we saw (from a distance – me wearing as usual a Japanese Aikido t-shirt!) a bunch of people, student age, apparently practicing for some demonstration soon to come: they were shouting some slogans, against Japan, but they were not so well organized, and from time to time stop and laugh.. Then they tried to walk together carrying some large banners (we could not see the text) and then they practice a long run, all together, again trying to keep some order..

China-Japan crisis

It looked at the same time funny and sad.. especially since in the past days very little has been enough to change parade into violent acts, even if some writes as minor acts or groups of protesters, when comparing to the majority.

It is actually a nice article at that link, but they missed a little the point: if in Hefei, that is a small place, I can see the things above (and there was a large parade against Japanese at the train station in the weekend) and for example, Anqing (潘蕾’s hometown, even smaller city) several shops put out the signs: “”dogs and Japanese cannot enter” (because of some Japanese car factories in the area), the situation is far worse than many people living in the big city are making themselves believe!

Out of fear, I believe, because if the situation goes down in the wrong way in Beijing or Shanghai, and since Japan is supported by USA first but close after by Europe, the feelings toward Japanese can turn very fast to be the same toward any laowai!

Also senior students in 潘蕾 university, since they had a free day yesterday, all got an sms from the teacher saying to stay away from the area where there could be some parade against the Japanese in order to avoid to be involved in the fight and destruction: the official position, being of course supporting China in the dispute, is against the parades that eventually always ended up attacking the police.

I hope the situation will manage to reach some.. balance, that both countries realize the risk of ultra-nationalism. Unfortunately I am not that optimist, but the outside world pressure might be the only way out!

Not a good time to practice Aikido!

16 09 2012

The Italian internet newspaper do not write a single line, lost of course after the muslim-USA problems.. but the Chinese-Japanese crisis because of the tiny uninhabited Senkaku “islands”, or better 8 agglomerate of rocks, little vegetation and maybe in the future.. oil? Not confirmed.. so no actual value except for the pure and illogical idealism and nationalism!

The row has old roots, but in this days the situation has fired up.

In the best American attitude of old Bush times, when election comes around and it is time the people look to the real work of their politicians, these people find some distractions in order to gain power and consense.. and what’s best than a war against old enemies? Real Bush-USA typical strategy but this time the wr would not be in some remote arabic land (and dear Americans are paying dearly, especially these days!!), but it could destroy a difficult and tenous balance in the Pacific region.

Watching Chinese TV and then checking internet I have been surprised the major Italian news did not report a single line of what happened the past few days: the same thing you people see in arabic countries (burning og flags and cars, attacking embassies protected by policemen in full body armor) is happening here, in major cities, Beijing and Shanghai firstly.

Chinese police defending the entrance of Japanese embassies and large group of people trying to break through and throwing rocks to the police.

Many Japanese companies have been isolated and Japanese people attacked, in restaurant or just on the street. Friends around here said to be worried people might come to the club just because Aikido is Japanese. I seriously do not know if Endo sensei will come to China in less than one month: Japanese embassy suggested all Japanese people to avoid trips to China if not strictly necessary.

Even with “tunnel” I am having problems opening Wikipedia and Youtube: in these situation one of the first steps the Chinese government always takes is tight the Internet control.

Everybody is talknig about this, from the taxi driver to the business man. China managed to focus on the ghost enemy, the historical one, so that htey forget why the cost of life is increasing like crazy, especially in Beijing, but the salaries are not going in the same way! Why the population is let to increase again (new “one-cxhild policy”: now it is easier to get a second child, if your parents had no siblings) even if everywhere the talks are about a weak economy growth. But soon it is election time, and China needs to feel a unite nation again with a strong leader not afraid to lead a terrible battle against an old hated neighbour..

And of course, the people that does not have anything to do about this is taken in the cross fire..

I wonder when the western press will start considering this in the proper way!