May 31,
2014

ISSUE
No. 11

AMS Weekly Newsletter
Supporting the development of the future stewards of U.S.-China relations
大家好!
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Weekly Readings
 
This week's readings come from Yang Hengjun (杨恒均), who is a former Chinese diplomat and now writes independently. His most recent writing is on perceptions of China and the U.S. indictments of Chinese military personnel involved in cyber-espionage. Yang writes on a wide variety of issues and offers an interesting mix of thoughtful analysis and nationalist rhetoric.

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Language-learning Resources
 
Curious about which digital dictionaries to use? Here is a wonderful post that discusses strengths and weaknesses of each one and as loads of helpful background info and advice. Well worth a read!

Digital Resources for Sinologists 1.0 
Weibo Watch
 
The Urumqi terrorist attack on May 22 has sparked a multi-faceted debate on weibo. On one side are those calling for everything from a harsh military crackdown in the restive region to deporting all the Uighur migrant workers in China's major cities back to Xinjiang. Another group is composed of more liberal-leaning netizens. They too have been shocked by the attack, but call for engagement between the government and the Uighur minority. Finally, there is the government. The Propaganda Department has put its army of "50-Cent" micro-bloggers to work spreading pictures of happy, prosperous Uighurs enjoying the benefits of order and "everything-is-under-control" posts. 

While the more liberal group doesn't necessarily buy into the "everything is fine" message, they do seem to agree that most Uighurs are not religious fanatics or terrorists. The more extreme group on the other hand are calling for retribution. Given the high number of recent arrests associated with this case and China's prosecutorial track record, they are likely to get it.

The more nuanced response by the government, attempting to control the conversation instead of simply deleting it, seems to be the new norm. That said, censors have scrubbed weibo of all the pictures of the blast sight, as well as any post suggesting direct violence against the Uighur minority. The government has also gone so far as to offer 500 RMB to anyone willing to take a vacation to the region. At the moment no one is saying if they will take the travel bounty or not, but it's certainly an interesting idea.
俗语 in Xi Jinping's speeches

触景生情 
ch jǐng shēng qng 

Translation: Recall old memories at familiar sights


Explanation: Earlier this month, on the 95th anniversary of the May 4th Movement, Xi Jinping gave a speech at Beijing University. Near the beginning of his speech he used this 成语. It refers to that feeling of nostalgia you get when you see a place from your memory (your old school, your childhood home). Perhaps some of you even get that feeling by seeing this picture...

原文: 这是我到中央工作以后第五次到北大,每次来都有新的体会。在洋溢着青春活力的校园里一路走来,触景生情,颇多感慨。我感到,当代大学生是可爱、可信、可贵、可为的。

Documentary of the Week
 
With the recent terrorist attacks across China and Xi Jinping's announcement that a new set of policies are being considered for Xinjiang, this week's documentary, entitled "反恐,中国准备好了吗?", discusses the attacks and China's measures for counter-terrorism. It also discusses the origins of China's counter-terrorism forces, Ba Ren Xiang (八仁乡暴乱), Wang Lequan, and presents a picture of how Chinese policies toward Xinjiang are understood domestically. Some of video is over-dramatized, but that should not distract from the more serious discussion scattered through about intelligence, Chinese policies, and how China has responded to incidents that surpass those normally thought of as "stability maintenance" (维护稳定).

None of the images surpass what one can find in Chinese newspapers; however, be forewarned that some images from Kunming probably are more graphic than would appear in an American broadcast.
 
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