China clarifies neutral stance on Ukraine crisis

We are pleased to republish this important article from Global Times, which provides a detailed exposition of what it describes as China’s “neutral stance” in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine and refutes some of the key misrepresentations of the Chinese position. It also analyses the motives of the Western powers in the current crisis and the evolution of their positions as events unfold, including the changing dynamic in relations between Europe and the United States.

Although the US and some other Western countries are trying to handle the current situation in Ukraine with waves of sanctions against Russia and questioning Beijing’s neutral stance, China has once again clarified its neutrality and the reason to the EU, France, Germany and the UK as to why it opposes sanctions ahead of the UN Emergency Special Session on Sunday.

Chinese State Councilor and Foreign Minister Wang Yi had phone conversations with UK Foreign Secretary Elizabeth Truss, High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell, French Diplomatic Advisor to the President Emmanuel Bonne and German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock from Friday to Saturday, according to the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Sunday. 

They had in-depth exchanges of views with a focus on the situation in Ukraine, while Wang expounded China’s basic position on the Ukraine issue. Wang stressed that “China supports and encourages all diplomatic efforts conducive to a peaceful settlement of the Ukraine crisis. China welcomes the earliest possible direct dialogue and negotiation between Russia and Ukraine.”

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Chinese Ambassador to UN calls for diplomatic solution to Ukraine crisis

In the speech below, Zhang Jun, China’s permanent representative to the United Nations, explains China’s decision to abstain on the UN Security Council draft resolution demanding Russia’s immediate withdrawal from Ukraine. Zhang stated that “any action should be truly conducive to defusing the crisis, rather than adding fuel to fire.”

Transgender rights: China advances while US backslides

The following article, written for Friends of Socialist China, by Serena Sojic-Borne, a transgender community organizer in New Orleans, and member of the Freedom Road Socialist Organization, contrasts the situation and prospects for transgender rights in the US and China. Serena explains how, while much remains to be done in both countries, China’s ongoing progress is underpinned by the Chinese revolution’s long struggle against feudal patriarchy and its commitment to human equality, whilst the endemic misogyny, transphobia and racism of US imperialism underscore the rise in both the murder of trans people and legislative attacks on their rights.

This year, transgender star and People’s Liberation Army veteran Jin Xing announced the re-launch of her talk show. It aired in 2015-2017 as the most-watched show in China. With 100 million viewers, Jin was the world’s most popular trans celebrity. Her rise to fame foretells the Chinese people’s rise against transphobia.

But in the US, trans people have suffered sharpening attacks. Last year broke records for trans murders and state-level anti-trans legislation.

What does this difference tell us?

US empowers bigots  

The Republican evangelical right scapegoats trans people as their latest “culture war” to mobilize far-right support and secure corporate interests.

In a coordinated transphobic attack, state legislatures introduced over 100 anti-trans bills in 2021. In Newsweek, Imara Jones reported about how hate groups like the Family Research Council draft and disseminate “model legislation,” including bans on trans kids playing sports and getting healthcare.

Continue reading Transgender rights: China advances while US backslides

The legacy of Edgar Snow: an interview with Professor Ken Hammond

Edgar Snow, a lifelong friend of the Chinese people and proponent of US-China friendship, died 50 years ago, on 15 February 1972. His pioneering book Red Star Over China, written in 1937, was the first introduction to the Chinese Revolution for millions in the English-speaking world. It remains essential reading today, and Snow’s life continues to inspire those that live by the principles of solidarity, international friendship and peace.

Interviewed by Friends of Socialist China co-editor Carlos Martinez, Ken Hammond – professor of history at New Mexico State University and an expert in Chinese history, politics and language – discusses Edgar Snow’s early life, his political development, his relationship with the leadership of the Communist Party of China, the impact that ‘Red Star Over China’ had in the West, the relationship between US progressive circles and China over the decades, and the importance of getting US-China relations back on track.

Panel discussion on the Belt and Road in Latin America

Friends of Socialist China co-editor Carlos Martinez joined Manolo De Los Santos, Executive Director of the People’s Forum, in a CODEPINK webinar about the expansion of the Belt and Road Initiative into Latin America and the Caribbean. Carlos and Manolo contrast the Belt and Road with the Washington Consensus, pointing out that Chinese economic engagement with Latin America is based on mutual respect and win-win relationships, as opposed to the domination and coercion that characterise the West’s approach. The Belt and Road Initiative offers an unprecedented opportunity for the countries of the region to upgrade their economies, to gain access to cutting edge technologies, to develop critically needed infrastructure, and to decarbonise their energy systems. In short, the relationship with China is helping the countries of the region to build a road out of underdevelopment.

Speech of W.E.B. Du Bois in Beijing University in 1959

On the 154th anniversary of his birth, we are pleased to republish this speech given in Beijing by the great African-American communist, Pan-Africanist, scholar and freedom fighter W.E.B. Du Bois on the occasion of his 91st birthday.

By courtesy of the government of the 600 million people of the Chinese Republic, I am permitted on my 91st birthday to speak to the people of China and Africa and through them to the world. Hail, then, and farewell, dwelling places of the yellow and black races. Hail human kind!

I speak with no authority; no assumption of age nor rank; I hold no position, I have no wealth. One thing alone I own and that is my own soul. Ownership of that I have even while in my own country for near a century I have been nothing but a “nigger.” On this basis and this alone I dare speak, I dare advise.

China after long centuries has arisen to her feet and leapt forward. Africa, arise, and stand straight, speak and think! Act! Turn from the West and your slavery and humiliation for the last 500 years and face the rising sun.

Continue reading Speech of W.E.B. Du Bois in Beijing University in 1959

Xi congratulates inauguration of Julius Nyerere leadership school

President Xi Jinping’s message of greetings to the completion ceremony of the Julius Nyerere Leadership School in Tanzania, reported here by CGTN, powerfully demonstrates that China’s commitment to the liberation and development of Africa continues in the new era. President Nyerere was the Founding Father of Tanzania, as well as an outstanding leader of the African liberation movement and of the Global South. A great friend of China, he first visited the country in 1965 and forged a deep bond with Chairman Mao, Premier Zhou Enlai and successive generations of Chinese leaders. This new school, built by China and bearing Nyerere’s name, is a joint initiative of the six liberation movements and ruling parties of Tanzania, South Africa, Mozambique, Angola, Namibia and Zimbabwe. As President Xi notes, for a long time these six parties in southern Africa have united and led their people in the cause of national independence, construction and development. President Xi has taken a personal interest in the building of the college. He also sent his greetings to its groundbreaking ceremony in July 2018.

Chinese President Xi Jinping, also general secretary of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee, on Wednesday sent a congratulatory letter on the inauguration ceremony of Mwalimu Julius Nyerere Leadership School in Tanzania. 

The Mwalimu Julius Nyerere Leadership School, co-founded by six parties in southern Africa, is located in Kibaha, some 40 kilometers from the commercial capital Dar es Salaam.

The six parties are the Revolutionary Party of Tanzania, the African National Congress of South Africa, the Mozambique Liberation Front Party and the People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola, the SWAPO Party of Namibia and the Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front.

Continue reading Xi congratulates inauguration of Julius Nyerere leadership school

Hua Chunying on US double standards regarding issues of sovereignty and territorial integrity

Many people are asking the US: Did the US respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia when US-led NATO bombed Belgrade? Did the US respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Iraq when it launched military strikes on Baghdad on unwarranted charges? Did the US respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Afghanistan when US drones wantonly killed innocent people in Kabul and other places? Did the US respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of other countries when it instigated color revolutions and meddled in their internal affairs all around the world?

Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Hua Chunying’s Regular Press Conference on February 23, 2022

How two US athletes effortlessly subverted information war against the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics

Our Co-Editor Danny Haiphong, in a piece originally published on The Chronicles of Haiphong, deftly takes down the malicious coverage of the Beijing Winter Olympics by the US media, from the overtly white supremacist to the supposedly liberal and progressive. He shows how two honest US sportspeople, Tessa Maud and Aaron Blunk, without making any overtly political comments, but simply by telling the truth and honestly relating their own experiences, have rendered a great service to the cause of peace and friendship among peoples. As Danny notes: “Humanizing China represents a direct threat to the New Cold War agenda.”

Few events have been more politicized than the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. New cold warriors and atrocity propagandists led by the United States did everything in their power to generate popular support for a full boycott of the Games. NED-backed organizations formed a coalition for the cause, the corporate media engaged in a full-scale “China bad” propaganda blitz, and the political establishment got busy crafting several pieces of legislation to respond to the so-called “China threat.” Their efforts failed. To save face, the U.S. implemented a non-consequential “diplomatic boycott” that found support from only a handful of junior partners in the West.

However, failure didn’t put an end to the U.S.-led information war at the heart of the boycott campaign. American and Western mainstream journalists attending the Games have used the opportunity to intensify the spread of anti-China propaganda. Chinese American skier Eileen Gu has been repeatedly targeted for choosing to represent China. Her decision triggered an intense backlash rooted in racist attitudes which are prevalent across the U.S. political spectrum. Eileen Gu was repeatedly labeled a traitor to the United States and even The Nation, a so-called “progressive” media outlet, was willing to publish an article citing a literal white supremacist organization just to defame her.

Continue reading How two US athletes effortlessly subverted information war against the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics

Is the crisis in Ukraine the beginning of a new world order?

In this important article, originally published in the Morning Star, Belgian political analyst Marc Vandepitte assesses the crucial importance of the recent joint statement of Presidents Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping. Marc notes that this is the first time both presidents have spoken out so clearly and strengthened ties so closely. Situating this against the background of recent history, he explains that, following the end of the bipolar division of the world, with the collapse of the Soviet Union, the US had determined that no power should ever again be allowed to challenge its hegemony. However, China, “a poor, underdeveloped country rose in no time to become an economic superpower”. Despite desperate US opposition, a “unipolar world must make way for a multipolar world”. The Collective Security Treaty Organisation, Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership and the new Silk Road are all building blocks for this. A strong peace movement is also a vital necessity.

JUST before the start of the Winter Olympics in Beijing, Presidents Vladimir Putin and Xi Jinping issued a joint statement on international relations and on co-operation between China and Russia.

It is a document of about 10 pages that comes at a time of great tensions with Nato over Ukraine and of a diplomatic boycott of the Winter Games.

The text can be read as a plea for a new world order in which the US and its allies are no longer in charge, but in which the aim is to create a multipolar world, with respect for the sovereignty of countries.

“The sides oppose further enlargement of Nato and call on the North Atlantic Alliance to abandon its ideologised cold war approaches, to respect the sovereignty, security and interests of other countries, the diversity of their civilisational, cultural and historical backgrounds and to exercise a fair and objective attitude towards the peaceful development of other states,” it reads.

Continue reading Is the crisis in Ukraine the beginning of a new world order?

Edgar Snow, and why his legacy is so important today

We’re pleased to republish this essay about Edgar Snow, written by Andy Boreham, a China-based journalist who works for Shanghai Daily and runs the Reports on China YouTube channel. Andy describes how Snow’s classic book Red Star Over China continues to inspire him to report factually and to counter the ubiquitous misrepresentation of China.

The vast majority of Western mainstream media reportage on China is negative and unbalanced, presenting China to the world as a dangerous, dirty dystopia, where 1.4 billion live terrible lives under the control of the “violent” Communist Party of China.

Of course, this is far from the reality. But any attempt to get the truth out about China, especially by foreigners living here, is often met with derision, accusations of CPC funding, and claims of brainwashing. Western media have also begun going out of their way to discredit foreigners who dare to say anything positive about China, with special reports where they twist facts and stain reputations.

But, believe it or not, this is nothing new …

On this day exactly 50 years ago, American journalist Edgar Snow passed away at the age of 66. Unfortunately he died just a week before then US President Richard Nixon made his famous 1972 visit to China and would never get to see the normalization of relations between the two nations.

Continue reading Edgar Snow, and why his legacy is so important today

Claudia Jones – fearless fighter for Black, women’s and colonial liberation

Today we celebrate the 107th birth anniversary of Claudia Jones: a communist and anti-imperialist; a fearless fighter for Black, women’s and colonial liberation; and an unwavering supporter of the Chinese Revolution.

China and Mexico celebrate 50 years of bilateral relations

The following report is republished from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China.

On February 14, 2022, President Xi Jinping exchanged congratulatory messages with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic ties between the two countries.

Xi Jinping pointed out, both China and Mexico are countries with time-honored civilizations and history, and the friendly exchanges between the two peoples date back to ancient times. Since China and Mexico established diplomatic ties half a century ago, especially since the two countries established a comprehensive strategic partnership in 2013, bilateral relations have been developing on a fast track. The two countries have deepened political mutual trust and enhanced friendly exchanges and cooperation in various fields. In the face of the once-in-a-century pandemic, China and Mexico have stood together through thick and thin and extended a helping hand to each other, setting a good example of international solidarity in fighting the pandemic. The tree of China-Mexico friendship has flourished and borne bountiful fruits, bringing tangible benefits to the people of the two countries.

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Argentina’s ambassador to China reflects on 50 years of China-Argentina relations

In this article for CGTN marking 50 years of diplomatic relations between China and Argentina, ambassador Sabino Vaca Narvaja details the deepening of the relationship over the last two decades in particular, starting with the Strategic Partnership announced by Hu Jintao and Néstor Kirchner in 2004. Most recently, Argentina has joined the Belt and Road Initiative, and the two countries are cooperating closely in an array of areas, including renewable energy, transport, housing and telecommunications. Vaca particularly notes China’s indispensable support during the Covid-19 pandemic: China supplied vast quantities of medical supplies, and has to date provided over 30 million vaccine doses. Sinopharm is now working with Sinergium Biotech to produce vaccines in Argentina.

Argentina and China are “comprehensive strategic partners,” the highest level of diplomatic relations, and this year we celebrate 50 years of diplomatic relations. Here I invite you to join me in a brief review of the evolution of this relationship.

Since the beginning of the new century, the bilateral relationship has deepened. It was precisely in 2004 that the government of Néstor Kirchner signed the “Strategic Partnership between Argentina and China” with the then Chinese President Hu Jintao. An important figure in this event was the then chief of the cabinet of ministers and now president of the nation, Dr. Alberto Fernández. In 2014, the relationship was raised even higher to the level of Comprehensive Strategic Partnership, with Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and Xi Jinping being presidents at that moment. Now the vice president is Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and the president is Alberto Fernández, who has just concluded a successful official visit to Beijing and signed the accession to the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI), deepening bilateral relations even more.

The nature of the comprehensive strategic partnership subscribed in 2014 by both governments implies a mandate to deepen cooperation in all areas, identifying and implementing projects that best meet the interests of both peoples. The potentialities of cooperation are incalculable since all areas are open to cooperation. In this aspect, we are working hard to consolidate and expand bilateral cooperation. An example of this is the Strategic Dialogue for Economic Coordination and Cooperation (DECCE). This mechanism is also in charge of implementing the Integrated Five-Year Plan which lists priority projects between both countries, such as photovoltaic parks, wind farms, gas pipelines, thermal power plants, transmission lines, dams and so on. There are also important projects related to strengthening our railway network, both in cargo and passenger transport and strengthening the connectivity of the Pacific through bi-oceanic corridors from east to west and the border crossings with Chile. Likewise, bridges, aqueducts, water treatment plants and residential buildings are being planned.

Continue reading Argentina’s ambassador to China reflects on 50 years of China-Argentina relations

Danny Haiphong and Richard Medhurst explode anti-China myths

In this detailed interview with independent journalist Richard Medhurst, Friends of Socialist China co-editor Danny Haiphong explores the intense anti-China propaganda surrounding the Beijing Winter Olympics. Danny connects this propaganda to the broader context of the US-led New Cold War, being waged in large part to contain China and to prevent the emergence of a multipolar, democratic system of international relations in which the US can no longer maintain its political and economic hegemony. Danny and Richard specifically address the accusations around cultural genocide in Xinjiang; Eileen Gu’s decision to represent China at the Olympics; the so-called disappearance of Peng Shuai; and China’s Zero Covid strategy.

Huey P Newton: What I experienced in China was the sensation of freedom

Black Panther Party founder Huey P Newton was born 80 years ago, on 17 February 2022. In his memoir, Revolutionary Suicide, he reflects on visiting socialist China in September 1971. Away from the system of institutionalized racism and white supremacy that he had endured all his life in the US, in China he “felt absolutely free for the first time in my life”.

What I experienced in China was the sensation of freedom – as if a great weight had been lifted from my soul and I was able to be myself, without defence or pretence or the need for explanation. I felt absolutely free for the first time in my life – completely free among my fellow human beings. This experience of freedom had a profound effect on me, because it confirmed my belief that an oppressed people can be liberated if their leaders persevere in raising their consciousness and in struggling relentlessly against the oppressor.

Huey P Newton, Revolutionary Suicide (Penguin Classics Deluxe Edition, p348)

Understanding China’s latest guidelines for greening the Belt and Road

This important article from China Dialogue describes a new document issued by China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE), Guidelines for ecological and environmental protection of foreign investment cooperation and construction projects. The authors describe the guidelines as “the most comprehensive document by any country regulator to guide environmental management of overseas projects”. Guidelines include adopting international standards or China’s stricter standards for environmental protection in host countries; actively cutting pollution of all kinds; strongly favouring clean energy; and reconsidering projects with high potential biodiversity costs. The authors note that these guidelines are not enforceable, but that they “send clear signals to China’s state-owned and private enterprises.” As such, they form an important milestone towards a Green Belt and Road.

This January, less than six months after publishing the “Green development guidelines for overseas investment and cooperation”, China’s ministries of commerce and of ecology and environment issued another set of recommendations with a similar name: “Guidelines for ecological and environmental protection of foreign investment cooperation and construction projects”.

How is this document different to last year’s? And how does it add value?

Simply put, the latest release reaffirms recommendations made in the earlier guidelines but has more focus on specific issues of environmental risk management throughout the whole lifecycle of Belt and Road projects. It provides more robust direction to manage environmental risks in specific sectors, such as energy, transport and mining.

It also reflects wider developments in recent months. Since the publication of last year’s guidelines, in July, China has made important commitments to support green overseas development. Notably, President Xi pledged China would no longer build new coal-fired power plants abroad, and would support green low-carbon energy in developing countries. In November, he further elaborated that China is exploring the establishment of an early warning and assessment system for overseas project risk.

Continue reading Understanding China’s latest guidelines for greening the Belt and Road

China and Russia declare ‘new era’ of multipolarity, challenging US interventionism

We are pleased to republish the following article from Ben Norton, originally published on Multipolarista, in which he summarises the key points in the more than 5,000 word joint statement of the Chinese and Russian governments, released following the meeting between Presidents Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin on the sidelines of the Beijing Winter Olympics. One of the most important documents in the recent history of diplomacy and international relations, Ben is surely correct in his opening assertion that, “February 4 2022 may very well be remembered in history textbooks as an important date in the shift of global politics.”

February 4, 2022 may very well be remembered in history textbooks as an important date in the shift of global politics.

That day was not only the inauguration of the XXIV Olympic Winter Games in Beijing; it also saw a historic meeting between the presidents of China and Russia.

Xi Jinping and Vladimir Putin signed a series of important economic and political agreements, deepening the integration of the two Eurasian superpowers.

Among these was a major 30-year deal in which Russia will supply gas to China via a new pipeline, with both sides of the energy transfers managed by state-owned companies. And in a sign of their mutual efforts to challenge the dominance of the US dollar, they decided to settle the sales in euros.

Continue reading China and Russia declare ‘new era’ of multipolarity, challenging US interventionism

Bigotry Unbound: the US media’s anti-China propaganda blitz

We are pleased to republish this article from US novelist and journalist Eve Ottenberg, originally carried on Counterpunch, in which she exposes how the racist, anti-communist, and at times downright fascist anti-China propaganda of important sections of the US media fuels both murderous racism at home and the danger of catastrophic war abroad.

Hate crimes against Asian Americans mushroomed over the past two years. According to the Guardian, they jumped 567 percent in San Francisco since 2021, and you don’t have to look far to find out why. The main reason is, quite simply, incessant China-bashing in the mainstream media.  This propaganda campaign was kicked off by Trump in his last year in office with absurd, dangerous and bombastic claims that China, perhaps deliberately, caused covid. The anti-China hysteria spread like measles. Now the American right-wing deploys Nazi tropes against the Chinese – a repulsive example was a January 25 Washington Times article headlined “Chinese Communist Party Termites Are Everywhere in the U.S.” With Nazi poison like this circulating through red-blooded American veins, can war fever be far behind?

Meanwhile news industry giants, many serving as pentagon mouthpieces, are totally onboard with this media blitzkrieg. One of the most atrocious instigators is the New York Times. Take its so-called coverage of China’s superior covid policies, “reporting” so slanted you could roll a truckload of innuendos down it.

Unlike the incompetent, murderous, free-market, anti-public health non-system in the U.S., which has killed 900,000 people in a population of 330 million, China, population 1.4 billion, has contained covid deaths to a mere several thousand. These statistics reflect very poorly on our vaunted capitalist arrangement. Indeed, many Americans have been shocked by the comparison of their inept, homicidal health care scheme to communism’s stellar success. So, in jumps the Times January 13 with a crude philippic, trashing China for saving lives from the virus and, drumroll… you got it, suggesting China’s Zero Covid policy can be compared to the Holocaust.

Continue reading Bigotry Unbound: the US media’s anti-China propaganda blitz

The West covered sports in 2008, but politics in 2022 – what changed?

The following article, originally carried in Global Times, by Brian Becker, Executive Director of the US campaigning organisation ANSWER (Act Now to Stop War and End Racism), contrasts US media coverage of the opening of the 2008 Beijing Olympics with that of the current Winter Olympics being held in the same city and in this way outlines the poisonous and corrosive effect of New Cold War propaganda.

Contrasting the US and Western media coverage of the first day of the summer Olympics in Beijing in 2008 with their coverage of the start of the Beijing Winter Olympics in early February speaks volumes about the new political consensus that Washington is attempting to impose on news organizations.

In 2008, France 24, the French news service, reported that “The British press was united in declaring the ceremony the best in Olympic history and a stunning display of China’s new-found confidence.”

The New York Times was almost gushing: The Times wrote at 8:20 am on August 8, 2008, “NBC is not providing television coverage of the spectacular opening ceremony from the Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing – in fact, you won’t be able to see it anywhere in the U.S. until tonight. But you can follow all that happens here on the Times Olympic blog, LIVE, as it happens.”

Continue reading The West covered sports in 2008, but politics in 2022 – what changed?