Kamila Valieva and Eileen Gu: Young Women Athletes as Enemies of Empire

In this article, originally published by Countercurrents, women’s historian Linda Ford analyzes and condemns the misogynist and racist animus directed by US imperialism towards two outstanding teenage woman athletes, Gu Ailing (Eileen Gu) of China and Kamila Valieva of Russia, in the service of the new Cold War.

As Ford rightly concludes:

“Here is hegemonic politics, and ruthless patriarchy and racism, coming together. And here are two remarkably strong and level-headed young women athletes who are braving the results of being who they are. In its overwhelming power, the US Empire has made evil all things Chinese and Russian, and women athletes have not been spared the weaponizing of that hate.”

As one who has followed Olympic women’s figure skating, especially since Michelle Kwan (ironically a Chinese-American), I was—as an egalitarian feminist when it comes to sports—excited to learn that there was a 15-year-old Russian woman skater, Kamila Valieva, who could do effortless quad jumps.  Waiting in anticipation of her first Olympic performance, I listened to commentators and former US skaters Tara Lipinsky and Johnny Weir rave about her spectacular talent.  They told the audience that we were about to see “the best skating in the world”…that “a talent like this comes around once in a lifetime.”  They found her first performance in the short skate “incredible… flawless… perfect in every way.”  It was, they said, a rare privilege to watch her perform:  “she will have an amazing legacy.”  Days later they would say nothing watching her perform.

Continue reading Kamila Valieva and Eileen Gu: Young Women Athletes as Enemies of Empire

Beijing’s Winter Paralympics: a symbol of human rights

This article by Keith Lamb, originally published in CGTN, examines the preparations that have been made in China for the 2022 Winter Paralympics, and explores how these connect to a growing understanding in China of disability rights, along with an expanding infrastructure to support those rights.

Holding both the Summer and Winter Olympic Games in Beijing is unprecedented. Also, it is no lesser an achievement that Beijing will hold both the Summer and Winter Paralympics. If the Olympics represent the harmonious bringing together of global diversity, united in the pursuit of excellence by competing for gold, then the Paralympics goes a step further by including excellence from all members of society.

Some see the Paralympics as a charitable sideshow to the Olympics but this is not the case. Even in the Olympics, athletes are separated in different divisions. The 100-metre sprinter Elaine Thompson-Herah of Jamaica’s gold, in Tokyo 2020, is no lesser an achievement than gold in the men’s division.

Likewise, athletes in combat sports are divided by weight. Welterweight boxer Floyd Mayweather would easily be floored by a “run-of-the mill” heavyweight but he is nevertheless classed, in terms of skill, as one of the best of all time.

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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

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.

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?

The US Left’s China exception: the case of Dave Zirin

We are very pleased to publish this important article by our co-editor Danny Haiphong, originally published on The Chronicles of Haiphong. Using the Beijing Winter Olympics as his starting point, Danny outlines how even some of the most respected voices on the American left have a tendency to drop their progressive values when it comes to China. Danny identifies this as the China Exception. Whilst doubtless a play on the concept of American Exceptionalism, the phenomenon identified and analysed by Danny can also be seen in other imperialist countries, not least in Britain.

I like Dave Zirin. I really do. Zirin is one of the few journalists who analyzes sports from a leftists perspective. His work generally brings a refreshing take on the ways race and class impact one of the most widely consumed areas of popular culture. This article is not a polemic of Zirin’s body of work but rather a demonstration of a troubling trend.

With that said, Zirin and his colleague Jules Boykoff at The Nation have repeatedly demonstrated what I call the China Exception on the American Left. The China Exception is the tendency for even principled left activists and journalists to make critical concessions to the U.S. establishment on the question of China. Those who commit to the China Exception repeat the subtle yet dangerous aspects of the U.S.’s New Cold War propaganda while claiming to be opposed to a “hot war” with China. The conclusion is always that is bad and doesn’t deserve solidarity from the American Left—not even in the form of concrete opposition to U.S. aggression.

Continue reading The US Left’s China exception: the case of Dave Zirin

Beijing 2022 and China’s challenge to sports imperialism

We are pleased to republish the full text of this insightful and thought-provoking article by Charles Xu of the Qiao Collective, originally published a few days before the opening of the Beijing Winter Olympics. In his article, Charles notes how New Cold War propaganda regarding Xinjiang, the case of tennis star Peng Shuai and China’s zero-Covid policies, have been deployed in the run up to the Games. He further links this to the long and deep-seated strain of racism, and specifically aristocratic white supremacy, in the modern Olympic movement and also outlines the history of China’s relationship to the Olympics from the days of Kuomintang rule through to Beijing becoming the first city ever to host both the summer and winter Games. HIs concluding section on the Games of the New Emerging Forces (GANEFO), organised in 1963 on the initiative of Indonesian President Sukarno, and in which the PRC played a crucial role, is particularly interesting. This was a time when an anti-imperialist Asian axis of Jakarta-Phnom Penh-Hanoi-Beijing-Pyongyang was often invoked. Some readers may note that the concept of New Emerging Forces continued to be frequently invoked by Korean President Kim Il Sung in his diplomatic and internationalist work over subsequent decades.

The incredible disappearing diplomatic boycott

On February 4, the 2022 Winter Olympics are set to open in Beijing. With this, the Chinese capital will become the first city to have hosted both the Summer and Winter Games. It will also make the People’s Republic of China the first country in the Global South ever to host the Winter Olympics, which have historically been dominated by Europe and North America (home to the top 14 countries in the all-time medal table). China remains the only Asian host nation in history besides Japan and South Korea, both of which are advanced capitalist states embedded firmly within the US economic and military sphere of influence.

These milestones have gone almost entirely unremarked-upon in Western media coverage leading up to the Games, which instead paints China as a uniquely “authoritarian” and therefore undeserving host. On this as with virtually every issue of geopolitical import, corporate media march in lockstep with their respective governments in their drive toward a new Cold War against China. The United States led the way in announcing a “diplomatic boycott” of the Beijing Olympics on December 6, 2021, citing allegations of “genocide and crimes against humanity in Xinjiang and other human rights abuses.” It was followed by Britain, Canada, and Australia (i.e. all but one of its “Five Eyes” allies), as well as Japan and a smattering of small north European countries. 

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Eileen Gu doesn’t care what you think – and no one else should, either

We are pleased to republish this article by Ian Goodrum, originally published in China Daily on 9 February 2022, comprehensively exposing the stark hypocrisy of those criticising Eileen Gu (Gu Ailing) for choosing to compete for China in the Beijing Winter Olympics.

Since she was 15, Eileen Gu (Gu Ailing) has had a target on her back.

The US-born freestyle skier of Chinese heritage announced in 2019 she would be competing for the People’s Republic at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, a decision met with enthusiasm in China — for obvious reasons — but intense animosity on the other side of the Pacific. On social media, vile comments flooded in calling her every name under the sun. Gu was ungrateful, they said, and had spurned the country they felt was entitled to her labor.

That already venomous response shifted into overdrive this week, when Gu, now 18, won gold in women’s freeski big air. Her miraculous run included a career-first 1620 in competition, barely edging out her nearest opponent and sending her name into the stratosphere.

Continue reading Eileen Gu doesn’t care what you think – and no one else should, either

Eileen Gu controversy exposes the importance of racial loyalty to the American empire

This article by Friends of Socialist China co-editor Danny Haiphong, originally published on The Chronicles of Haiphong, unpacks the hysteria surrounding the decision of the young Chinese-American ski champion Eileen Gu (Gu Ailing) to represent China rather than the US at the Winter Olympics. Danny explains how the intense hostility Gu’s decision has generated in the US has its origins in the New Cold War, American exceptionalism, imperialism, and white supremacy.

Eileen Gu is a world class skier who has already won her first gold medal in the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics at the age of 18. Gu was raised in San Francisco by a mixed-race family. Her mom, who she posts about often on social media, is Chinese. In 2019, Gu announced that she planned to represent the Chinese national team for the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic Games. But it is only within the last few weeks as the Winter Olympics prepared to launch that her decision began to stir a considerable amount of controversy. Gu has been labeled an ungrateful “traitor” to the United States for supposedly spurning the opportunities offered to her in the “land of the free.”

The vitriol directed at Gu has come from all corners of U.S. society. Former Olympic skier Jen Hudak told the media that Gu “became the athlete she is because she grew up in the United States, where she had access to premier training grounds and coaching that, as a female, she might not have had in China.” Popular right-wing talk show host Tucker Carlson claimed that Gu “renounced” her citizenship and betrayed her own country by choosing to ski for China.

A report in The Economist framed Gu’s decision as an agonizing moment for the teenage phenom who finds herself split between two countries engaged in a “superpower rivalry.” No evidence for this claim was provided in the article. Corporate media commentary has repeatedly emphasized that Gu was “born in the USA” while social media users on the far right have openly called for the Olympic skier to leave the country for her act of betrayal.

The intense reaction to Gu comes amid a tireless U.S. effort to delegitimize China in the lead up to the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. U.S. President Joe Biden announced a “diplomatic boycott” of the Games last December, a relatively meaningless gesture that saw more than dozen State Department officials apply for visas to travel to the Games shortly after the policy went into effect. A non-stop propaganda blitz helped pass the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act a few weeks later. The bill effectively sanctions U.S. corporations from doing business in China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region by requiring proof that products imported from the region are not made from “forced labor.” These policy moves just skim the surface of the U.S.-led New Cold War on China and its many forms of aggression in the military, diplomatic, economic, and information realms.

As I penned in a previous column, fear is a critical component of the U.S.’s racist and imperialist attacks on China. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi summed up modern American fear of China when she warned U.S. athletes on the day of the opening ceremony not to speak out against China for fear that its “ruthless” government would seek reprisal. Pelosi’s characterization of China fits one side of casual racism’s double-edged sword. Fear of China’s supposedly unmatched ruthlessness is complimented by a ceaseless suspicion of China’s COVID-19 response, poverty alleviation program, and overall political and economic stability. China is all-powerful yet never successful; a menace to the “free world” but on a never-ending road to collapse.

The U.S.-led New Cold War is an imperialist project. At its core is a ceaseless effort to undermine and eventually overthrow China’s socialist economic and political system. More visible to the naked eye is the palpable fear expressed by Western capitalists of China’s economy surpassing the U.S. in GDP terms over the next half decade. War profiteers have benefitted immensely from the New Cold War. The U.S. military budget continues to grow, with special funds set aside for countering the so-called “China threat.”

Of course, the New Cold War is also a reflection of a long history of imperialist aggression toward China dating back to the Opium Wars of the mid-19th century. The Opium Wars carved up China and left the nation impoverished and weak. Western imperialists justified plunging China into a “century of humiliation” with Yellow Peril racism. The Chinese were routinely dehumanized and portrayed in Western media as sneaky thieves and rapists who deserved to be deported or worse. Yellow Peril justified the passage of racist immigration laws which increased the rate of exploitation and violently managed the flow of surplus labor migrating from China.

China and Chinese people were only useful to the West so long as they were weak and subservient. This all changed after the Chinese revolution of 1949 sent shockwaves throughout the Western capitalist world. U.S. officials lamented over “losing China” to communism. China was placed under sanctions from 1949-1971 by the United States and threatened with nuclear war more than once.

However, Cold War imperialist aggression was unsuccessful in destabilizing China. To paraphrase Mao Zedong, the Chinese people stood up in 1949 and are showing no signs of sitting back down to their former oppressors. China’s achievements in poverty alleviationpublic healthrenewable energyhigh-technology, and a myriad of other fields have changed the course of history. A multipolar world is emerging where non-white, formerly colonized nations assert their self-determination in the midst of a declining imperialist order. China is leading the way.

Racial loyalty is an expression of both conscious and unconscious resentment toward these developments and plays a central role in the anger over Gu’s decision to represent China. To many in the United States, Gu has chosen the side of the “savages” and the “wretched of the earth.” She has rejected the United States as her white motherland. The overriding perception is that the U.S.’s superiority is as inherent as China’s supposed inferiority, making Gu’s decision a clear pledge of loyalty to a country inhabited by 1.4 billion non-white people and 90-plus million members of the Communist Party of China. In the eyes of her detractors, Eileen Gu is not just an ungrateful immigrant but an assault on American exceptionalism itself.

Such a view is entirely irrational once the blinders of racism are taken off. Gu is deeply connected to China on a personal and professional level. She is fluent in Mandarin and spends most summers in Beijing visiting loved ones. Gu is a Chinese citizen and has several Chinese sponsors. Her mother works for an investment firm in China.

In addition to her connections to China, it is obvious that Gu is developing her moral compass and views her actions as bigger than herself. She has been an outspoken advocate on issues of anti-Asian racism and gender equality. In her Instagram post announcing the decision to ski for China, Gu informed her audience that she hopes to “unite people, promote common understanding, create communication, and forge friendship between nations.”

This is a powerful message that demonstrates Gu is less interested in geopolitics as she is about using her platform to promote peace and mutual understanding.

Of course, racism is never about the facts. Racism makes people see things that are not there and create problems that do not exist. The reaction to Gu is a manifestation of the ongoing importance of racial loyalty to the American Empire. Americanism has always been synonymous with white imperialist power, both in identity terms and through politics. Those who are perceived to cross the boundaries of political whiteness are traitors to the empire’s civilizing mission to dominate, exploit, and plunder in the name of “freedom” and have crossed the line into enemy territory.

I personally identify with the attacks on Eileen Gu. Growing up as a Vietnamese-American of mixed race, I constantly felt that my racial loyalty to the empire was being tested by peers and institutions. Most people saw me as nothing but a “gook” or a “chink,” a target of imperialist wars of prior generations. The message from American society was clear as a young person: I could either put my head down and embrace the white American side of my family or face the threat of violence from white peers who took issue when I would speak up to their racist demagogy. When I would embrace my status as a subordinate and link with those of oppressed racial and national backgrounds, teachers would ask me why I chose to spend time with “knuckleheads” at the expense of my “potential.”

The U.S. is a racist society. No matter how “mixed-race” the U.S. becomes, white supremacy demands that the masses make political decisions based upon their loyalty to the American imperialist project. Racial loyalty subsumes class contradictions in a sea of confusion and directs political energy toward the destruction of an enemy “other.” Majorities of Americans Westerners have been convinced that China and its people are their enemies.

Eileen Gu has exposed how racial loyalty to the United States remains a prominent feature of a declining empire. Her positive message of peace and cooperation is viewed by many as an act of betrayal to her American citizenship—a euphemism for whiteness. White supremacy is inextricably bound with the Cold War 2.0. being led by the United States and its junior partners. Gu’s desire for common understanding among nations is unattainable unless white supremacy is confronted and thrown into the dustbin of history along with the system of imperialism that gave it birth.

Olympic opening ceremony a true celebration of international friendship

The following brief comment was submitted by Friends of Socialist China co-editor Carlos Martinez in response to a request from People’s Daily. It was quoted in a report in the Chinese edition on 5 February 2022.

The opening ceremony was spectacular and inspiring, a true celebration of international friendship and the Olympic spirit. Even in Britain and the US – countries that have imposed a so-called diplomatic boycott on these games – television commentators were obviously highly impressed with the technical and aesthetic excellence of the ceremony, as well as the overall atmosphere of excitement and solidarity.

It was fascinating to see the Bird’s Nest transformed from 2008. The stadium now seems perfectly suited to the Winter Olympics, and its reuse reminds us that the organisers have been very mindful of the need to make these Olympics the greenest in history, at a time when the global struggle against climate breakdown has become widely recognised as one of the most serious threats facing humanity. All the venues are powered exclusively by renewable energy and, of the seven venues, five are legacy venues that been repurposed for these games. Furthermore, the vehicles transporting participants, staff, officials and spectators run on zero- or low-carbon energy. Such innovations serve to showcase China’s increasing leadership on environmental issues.

Continue reading Olympic opening ceremony a true celebration of international friendship

The Beijing Winter Olympics are a symbol of multipolarity and international friendship

In this article, originally published in the Global Times, Carlos Martinez addresses the pathetic attempts by a handful of imperialist countries to organise a ‘diplomatic boycott’ of the Beijing Winter Olympics, noting that the vast majority of the world’s countries have no interest in participating in the US-led New Cold War. Meanwhile the Games will showcase a modern, socialist China that is a leading force in the construction of a multipolar world.

With over 30 heads of state and government gathered in Beijing to attend the opening ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympics, in spite of the pandemic which is still raging in most of the world, the Games will prove to be a symbol of a deepening multipolarity and global solidarity.

A tiny handful of imperialist countries, led by the United States, tried and failed to coordinate a so-called ‘diplomatic boycott’, based on absurd and debunked fabrications about the treatment of Xinjiang’s Uyghur population.

When Joe Biden announced a year ago that “diplomacy is back,” most people around the world hoped he had a more positive program in mind. Tellingly, the only countries that have supported this highly undiplomatic boycott are the same countries that have been waging genocidal wars on the Muslim world for the last two decades. Britain for example was an enthusiastic participant in the wars on Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. One wonders why it didn’t boycott its own London 2012 Olympics, as a statement of condemnation of its state terrorism in the Middle East.

Continue reading The Beijing Winter Olympics are a symbol of multipolarity and international friendship

Message of friendship on the opening of the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022

Embedded below is a friendship message from Friends of Socialist China, delivered by our co-editor Carlos Martinez, on the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022. The transcript follows the video, and has been translated into Dutch by our friends at ChinaSquare.be

On behalf of Friends of Socialist China, I’d like to express our support for, and confidence in, the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022.

We believe that these Games constitute an important milestone on the road to a multipolar world.

A handful of imperialist countries have tried to instigate a so-called diplomatic boycott, concocting vicious and ridiculous slanders about human rights abuses in Xinjiang.

People around the world have commented on the chilling irony of countries such as the US and Britain – with their record of genocidal wars fought against the Muslim world, and with their longstanding problems of Islamophobic racism – suddenly positioning themselves as the defenders of Muslim human rights.

Continue reading Message of friendship on the opening of the Beijing Winter Olympics 2022

Argentina’s President Fernández to visit Chairman Mao Memorial Hall while attending Beijing Olympics

The Beijing Winter Olympics will open in a few days and, despite the pathetic attempts of a handful of imperialist countries to instigate a so-called boycott – and the practical difficulties caused by the global pandemic – dozens of heads of state and government and senior officials from governments and international organisations, particularly from the Global South, will descend on the Chinese capital to welcome this festival of sporting excellence, peace and friendship. One such leader will be Argentine President Alberto Fernandez. As Argentine Ambassador to China Sabino Vaca Narvaja explains in this interview with Global Times, that we are pleased to publish below, his President will have a hectic schedule in Beijing, with a highlight being a visit to the Chairman Mao Memorial Hall. The Ambassador explains that Argentina’s historic nationalist and anti-imperialist leader Juan Peron, to whose political tradition President Fernandez belongs, maintained a friendship and correspondence with Chairman Mao. “It was because of this historical connection that President Fernandez was invited to be one of the foreign leaders to address the ‘CPC and World Political Parties Summit’ last year, when the CPC celebrated its centennial,” the Ambassador remarked.

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez will visit Chairman Mao Memorial Hall during his visit to China for the opening ceremony of Olympic Winter Games Beijing 2022, Argentine Ambassador to China Sabino Vaca Narvaja told the Global Times in a recent exclusive interview.

“For both Argentina and the rest of the world, Mao is a very crucial state leader,” Narvaja explained. 

President Fernandez is also president of Argentina’s Partido Justicialista Party, which has “very important historical ties” with the Communist Party of China (CPC), the ambassador said. “Former Argentine president Juan Peron even maintained friendship and correspondence with Chairman Mao,” said the ambassador. “It was because of this historical connection that President Fernandez was invited to be one of the foreign leaders to address the ‘CPC and World Political Parties Summit’ last year, when the CPC celebrated its centennial.”

Continue reading Argentina’s President Fernández to visit Chairman Mao Memorial Hall while attending Beijing Olympics

Beijing Winter Olympics boycott is the product of imperial jealousy

In this article, first published on CGTN, Danny Haiphong traces the motivation of the ‘diplomatic boycott’ of the Beijing Winter Olympics being carried out by the US and a handful of its allies. Danny observes that the boycott – like the overall New Cold War of which it is a part – is intended to further to central objectives: to undermine China’s accomplishments and to deflect from the shortcomings of the political and economic system prevailing in the major capitalist countries.

In a few weeks, athletes from across the globe will compete in the Winter Olympic Games in Beijing. The Games come amid a challenging period for the world. COVID-19 continues to contribute to greater economic and social instability. Militarism and climate change threaten the future of humanity. Instead of facing these challenges head on, some countries such as the United States have chosen to politicize the upcoming Winter Olympics in Beijing.

The politicization of the Olympics has taken many forms but the most significant is the U.S.-led “diplomatic boycott” of the Games announced early last month, which was justified on the basis of fraudulent and unproven claims of human rights violations in China. Organizations such as the World Uygur Congress and Students for a Free Tibet, both of which receive funding from the National Endowment for Democracy linked with the Central Intelligence Agency, are leading forces in the boycott campaign. The effort has also received bipartisan support in the U.S. Congress, with several Western countries following Joe Biden’s lead. In a blatant act of hypocrisy, 18 U.S. officials applied for visas with plans to visit Beijing during the Games shortly after the announced “diplomatic boycott.”

Continue reading Beijing Winter Olympics boycott is the product of imperial jealousy

Elias Jabbour: Boycotts, hypocrisy and the organic intellectuals of imperialism

In this important article for CGTN, Elias Jabbour discusses the so-called ‘diplomatic boycott’ by some Western countries of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics, explaining that the boycott forms part of a set of behaviours and slanders that are designed to delegitimise China’s government and to prepare public opinion in the West for further attacks on China. He notes that, sadly, some pseudo-Marxist intellectuals in Europe and North America are participating in this imperialist Cold War project.

It was early December when breaking news took the political and diplomatic circles around the world by surprise: the United States has declared a so-called “diplomatic boycott” of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.

According to U.S. government spokeswoman Jen Psaki, the country would not treat the Olympics as something normal given the “atrocities” in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region. As expected, England and Canada announced something similar later. Same posture Australia. Repeat a lie a thousand times and it becomes the truth?

Since then, EU countries have been pressured to take a similar stance, but for the time being, only Belgium has followed this lead, and in Latin America, there are no signs in this direction. As symbolic as this act can be, it is interesting to note the degree of isolation of U.S. imperialism in countless initiatives.

We must read this attitude in different ways. This “boycott,” although isolated and almost symbolic, is serious. The U.S. doubles its bet on the proliferation of lies for political purposes with a view to delegitimizing the government of the People’s Republic of China in the international community while continuing yet another colonial war.

Let us be under no illusion. What the U.S. plots against China is a colonial war with the purpose of subjugating the country to an order based on violence, blind obedience and punitive wars, applied to those who dare to leave the radar of imperialism’s control. As for the accusations of “genocide” in Xinjiang, the facts show that what we are seeing is an old policy, very similar to what was used by the Nazi propaganda machine. A simple survey is enough to demonstrate that, in reality, these charges are fallacies.

For example, one of the accusations is that China has a policy of mass sterilization, which would have seen the Xinjiang Uygur’s population falling from 15.5 births per thousand to 2.5 per thousand. However, according to the seventh national census report released in May, the Han population growth rate was 4.93 percent, while China’s ethnic minority population increased by 10.26 percent compared to 2010.

Specifically, the population of ethnic minorities in Xinjiang has grown by 14.27 percent in that same period. It is also good to remember that the birth control policies implemented in the early 1980s were not applied to Chinese ethnic minorities.

Another lie concerns the alleged “cultural genocide” preventing Uygur Muslims from freely practicing their religion, including restrictions on the use of their typical clothes and violation of mosques.

However, Xinjiang has more than 24,000 mosques, an average of 530 Muslims per mosque. This number is more than double the total number of existing mosques in the U.S., Britain, Germany and France. On the other side, in the name of “democracy” and “human rights,” U.S. soldiers looted relics from the Historical Museum of Baghdad in 2003.

For that, it is clear that this “boycott” is not supported by data, but by lies and a sea of hypocrisy. The deep contradictions of U.S. society, which was born under the combination of slave labor and reactionary ideologies that support theses such as “indispensable nation,” “manifest destiny” and “New Canaan,” are known by many.

The human rights situation is dire to the point that a 2021 national poll by researcher John Zogby found that 46 percent of the U.S. population believed that a future civil war was likely, another 43 percent thought it was unlikely and 11 percent were unsure.

War seemed more likely for young people (53 percent) than for older ones (31 percent), and for those residing in the South (49 percent) and Central/Great Lakes region (48 percent) compared to those in the East (39 percent).

Meanwhile, a real disaster is taking place in the country with the death of more than 817,000 people by COVID-19. Right-wing ideologies twist the minds of about half of the country’s population by spreading scientific denial, racism and hate crimes against blacks, Latinos and other minorities.

Finally, the new feature of this attempt of a “diplomatic boycott” is the strong resurgence of intellectuals within the so-called progressive camp at the service of the demoralization of socialist experiences.

This was something very common during the Cold War, and was usually due to the co-option, by imperialism, of European Marxist intellectuals, that were induced to criticize the former Soviet Union. Now, there are figures like the philosopher Slavoj Zizek, signatory of a petition pressing the French government to “boycott” the Winter Olympics.

The cultural war against China involves the mobilization of “intellectuals” to criticize China. History repeats itself, but now as farce.

Table tennis champ Connie Sweeris discusses her experience playing in China

Embedded below is a lovely video interview of Connie Sweeris, then the US national women’s singles table tennis champion, reflecting on her visit to China in 1971 as part of the ‘ping-pong diplomacy’ mission – an important first step on the road to US-China normalization. With the Beijing Winter Olympics coming up in early 2022, and with the US and other countries threatening a diplomatic boycott, Connie Sweeris emphasizes the power of sport in breaking down barriers and building understanding between peoples.

Danny Haiphong: The fake Peng Shuai scandal is part of US efforts to disrupt Beijing Winter Olympics

The following article by Danny Haiphong, originally published in MintPress News, takes a detailed look at the recent story of Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai, who was alleged to have ‘disappeared’ in early November after posting allegations of sexual assault against former Vice Premier Zhang Gaoli. Danny exposes the absurdly sensationalized version of the story that appeared in the Western press, and shows how it is feeding into US efforts to demonize China and disrupt the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics.

The New York Times reported on November 3 that Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai had published allegations of sexual assault against former Vice Premier of the People’s Republic of China Zhang Gaoli on the social media platform Weibo. Peng’s post was deleted within 24 hours. This led to a firestorm of speculation in U.S. corporate media about Shuai’s “safety” and whether the tennis star had gone missing. The hashtag #WhereisPengShuai went viral 10 days later after the CEO of the World Tennis Association (WTA), Steve Simon, called on Chinese authorities to investigate the situation. Prominent celebrities and tennis players such as Serena Williams also went public with their concern for Peng.

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