China’s Xi Set for Star Turn at Davos Gathering

Tom Mitchell and Charles Clover
Financial Times
President aims to show he is one of the few responsible adults left on the global stage

China Delegation Reportedly Open to Meeting Trump’s Team at Davos

Gemma Acton
CNBC
China’s President Xi Jinping’s delegation to the World Economic Forum to be held in Davos next week is open to a meeting with President-elect Donald Trump’s team

China, Fanning Patriotism, Adds Six Years to War with Japan in History Books

Javier Hernandez
New York Times
For generations, the “Eight-Year War of Resistance Against Japanese Aggression” has been ingrained in the minds of Chinese schoolchildren. Now the war is getting a new name, and an extended time frame.

2016 China-Africa Year in Review

Eric Olander & Cobus van Staden
After years of relatively trouble-free development, 2016 marked a turning point in the China-Africa relationship, amid turbulent changes in the global economic and political order. China increased its deployment of combat troops to the continent,...

A Human Rights Activist, A Secret Prison and A Tale from Xi Jinping’s New China

Tom Phillips
Guardian
Peter Dahlin spent 23 days in a ‘black prison’ in Beijing, where he says he was deprived of sleep and questioned with a ‘communication enhancement’ machine.

China's Homegrown Populism to Test Xi Jinping

CNBC
Britain voted to leave Europe, and the United States voted to elect Donald Trump. Now, could China be facing a populist backlash of its own? Some China watchers say a growing populist movement will test the nation's leadership ahead of the 19th...

Conversation

12.30.16

Rex Tillerson at State: What Will He Mean for U.S.-China Relations?

Barbara A. Finamore, Shen Dingli & more
On December 13, President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team announced the selection of ExxonMobil Chief Executive Rex Tillerson as Secretary of State. We asked ChinaFile contributors to respond to the choice with a specific focus on how Tillerson...

A Good Year for Xi Jinping— But Trouble is Heading His Way

Tom Phillips
Guardian
After domestic victories in 2016, China’s president must deal with a worsening economy and Trump in the White House

Uncertainty Over New Chinese Law Rattles Foreign Nonprofits

Chris Buckley
New York Times
A new law in China is raising concern among thousands of nongovernmental organizations about their ability to continue their work in the new year

Xi’s Power Play Foreshadows Historic Transformation of How China is Ruled

Jeremy Page and Lingling Wei
Wall Street Journal
Party insiders say president wants to remain in office after his second term, breaking succession conventions

Trump’s and Xi’s Differences Magnify Uncertainties Between U.S. and China

Chris Buckley
New York Times
Both came to power vowing to restore their nations to greatness...but that's where the similarities end...

Facing a Transition of Power, China’s Xi is More Desperate Than Ever to Control Young Minds

Echo Huang
Quartz
With 2017 nearing, it’s likely China will expand its campaign to further instill the ideologies of the party in young minds

Viewpoint

12.15.16

The Missing Topic in Trump’s Tough Talk on China

Melissa Chan
President-elect Donald Trump’s rhetoric suggests he will push China on many issues, not just one. Some observers have held on to the hope that his phone call with Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen, his burst of anti-China tweets, and his most recent...

Popular Chinese Muslim Website Down After Posting Letter Critical of Xi

Christian Shepherd
Reuters
Users of China Muslim Net say they have been unable to access the website since Saturday

Media

12.09.16

U.S.-China Relations As a Cycle of ‘Rapturous Enchantment’ and ‘Deep Disappointment’

Eric Fish from Asia Blog
In 1872, China’s imperial government began sending teenage boys to the United States to study science and technology. After a series of “humiliating” military defeats at the hands of technologically superior foreign powers, China’s leaders realized...

Viewpoint

12.09.16

I Think That Chinese Official Really Liked Me!

David Wertime & James Palmer
“Friendship” is everywhere in China, at least when it comes to dealing with foreigners. International societies are friendship associations. The stores once accessible only to foreign currency holders were called Friendship Stores. Provincial cities...

China Universities Must Become Communist Party 'Strongholds', Says Xi Jinping

Tom Phillips
Guardian
All teachers must be ‘staunch supporters’ of party governance, says president in what experts called an effort to reassert control

Does One Man in China Control the Fate of Africa’s Elephants?

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
In the powerful new Netflix documentary The Ivory Game, Elephant Action League Executive Director Andrea Crosta ominously warned that the entire fate of Africa’s elephants is in the hands of a single man, Chinese President Xi Jinping. Only President...

How a Midwest Governor Rose to Become America’s Top Official in China

Catherine Wong
South China Morning Post
Trump administration hopes Terry Branstad’s long-standing friendship with Xi Jinping will smooth often-strained ties between the two nations

Trump Picks Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad as Beijing Ambassador

Simon Denyer and Philip Rucker
Washington Post
Branstad has extensive ties to China and a personal friendship with Chinese President Xi Jinping

Xi Jinping to be ‘First Chinese President to Attend Davos Summit’

Li Jing
South China Morning Post
Trip has yet to be officially announced but preparations well underway for Chinese head of state’s visit to World Economic Forum in Switzerland

Conversation

12.05.16

Should Washington Recalibrate Relations with Taipei?

Yu-Jie Chen, J. Michael Cole & more
On Friday, Donald Trump shocked the China-watching world when news broke that he had spoken on the phone to Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen. The call was remarkable not for its content—Tsai’s office said she told Trump she hoped the United States “...

China Seizes Opening in U.S. Backyard as Trump Upends Policy

Ting Shi and John Quigley
Bloomberg
As Trump weighs plans to tear up trade deals and deport illegal migrants from Latin America, China's Xi is moving swiftly to reset relations in America’s backyard...

Conversation

11.21.16

Will China Take the Lead on Climate Change?

Sam Geall, Barbara A. Finamore & more
At a time when the world is looking to China and the United States, the leading emitters of greenhouse gasses, to cooperate under the terms of the Paris Climate Change Agreement of 2015, will China now take the lead in fighting climate change?

As Trump Tweets about SNL and Hamilton, China’s Xi Embraces a New, Powerful Role

Zheping Huang and Heather Timmons
Quartz
Trump’s talk of increasing trade barriers and disdain for global organizations and agreements could create a more isolationist US, leaving China to fill the gap

China’s Xi Calls for ’Smooth Transition’ in Relationship With U.S.

Jeff Mason
Reuters
During a meeting in Peru, Xi Jinping praised outgoing President Obama for strengthening ties between the two nations

A China-America Romance?

Economist
After the wildest political upsets this year, here’s a prediction for next: China will deem its relations with America to be entering something of a golden period

Electing Donald Trump: The View from China

Paul Haenle & Zhao Hai from Carnegie-Tsinghua Center for Global Policy
Donald Trump’s election in the 2016 U.S. presidential race ushers in a period of considerable uncertainty in regard to the future of U.S. policies in the Asia-Pacific and vis-à-vis its relationship with China. In this podcast, Paul Haenle spoke with...

China Discovers the Price of Global Power: Soldiers Returning in Caskets

Jeremy Page and Matina Stevis
Wall Street Journal
Xi’s quest to make his nation a military player on the world stage provokes soul-searching as China absorbs its first combat casualties in decades

Conversation

11.15.16

Should China’s Neighbors Rely on the U.S. for Protection?

Richard J. Heydarian, Sheila Smith & more
President-elect Donald Trump campaigned on a platform of neo-isolationism that could see many traditional U.S. allies in Asia left without Washington’s support in the newly roiled waters of the South- and East China Seas. What will the governments...

Trump, China’s Xi Set Tone of “Mutual Respect” in Phone Call

Te-ping Chen
Wall Street Journal
Mr. Trump’s campaign was marked by heated rhetoric targeting China, but in a phone call, the leaders agreed cooperation was key

Beijing Reacts Cautiously to Trump Triumph

Tom Mitchell
Financial Times
President-elect has threatened China with trade and currency wars

Conversation

11.07.16

The Chinese Communist Party, with Xi Jinping at the Core

Bo Zhiyue & Kerry Brown
In late October, the Chinese Communist Party anointed Xi Jinping as a “core leader.” While the position doesn’t come with any formal responsibilities, its symbolism is important. According to The New York Times, it shows that senior Party officials...

China Ousts Finance Minister Lou Jiwei as Xi Turns to Allies in Surprise Reshuffle

Lingling Wei and Jeremy Page
Wall Street Journal
Senior official was widely seen as a voice for reform of the country’s fiscal system

In Xi’s China, Everything Old is New Again

Julian Gewirtz and Jeff Wasserstrom
Foreign Policy
Eighty years after the end of the Long March, a Communist leader asks for another one. What is he really seeking?

Xi Jinping is China’s “Core” Leader: Here’s What That Means

Chris Buckley
New York Times
President Xi got a lift when the CCP give him the title of "Core" Leader last week. But what does that mean for Mr. Xi and China’s political future?...

Conversation

10.27.16

What Does Xi Jinping’s Top-Down Leadership Mean for Innovation in China?

Matthias Stepan, Anna Ahlers & more
One of the hallmarks of Xi Jinping’s leadership has been a centralization of power across a whole range of areas of domestic politics. This week, the Chinese Communist Party’s leadership meets in Beijing for the sixth plenary session of its 18th...

China’s Communist Party Declares Xi Jinping ‘Core’ Leader

Chris Buckley
New York Times
The term suggests Mr. Xi has already joined the same revered league as Mao Zedong and Deng Xiaoping before a big shake-up in the party’s top ranks next year

China’s 6th Plenum Begins With a Focus on Intra-Party Discipline: What to Expect

Ankit Panda
Diplomat
The highlight of China’s 2016 political calendar, the Sixth Plenum of the 18th Party Congress of the Chinese Communist Party, kicked off on Monday

Party Time in China: The Riddle of Xi

Dexter Roberts
Bloomberg
The prospect of the Party Congress in fall 2017 is already roiling politics.

‘I Am Chinese’: Philippine President Duterte’s Awkward Charm Offensive in China

Charlie Campbell
Time
Having sanctioned thousands of extrajudicial killings, Duterte says his visit to China is “the defining moment of my presidency”

How the Party’s Absolute Power Undermines its Efforts to Strengthen China’s Rule of Law

Cary Huang
South China Morning Post
While Chinese leaders support the need for a credible legal system, it is their iron-clad grip that is the stumbling block to its development

China’s Real ‘House of Cards’: TV Series Unveils Graft Excess

Ting Shi
Bloomberg
The eight-episode series, called “Always On the Road,” is being beamed daily to hundreds of millions of Chinese homes through Oct. 25 on CCTV’s Channel 1

The Limits of Chinese Isolationism

Alice Su
Atlantic
Can a country doing business all over the world really avoid other peoples' politics?...

The Race to China’s 19th Party Congress

Jonathan Brookfield
Diplomat
Next fall, China’s leaders will kick off the 19th Party Congress. Start your engines.

Xi Jinping Reminds China’s State Companies of Who’s the Boss

Emily Feng
New York Times
In an unusual meeting that ended on Tuesday, President Xi Jinping announced that the Chinese Communist Party had the ultimate say over state companies

Why Cambodia is Pinning its Hopes on Chinese President’s Visit

Luke Hunt
South China Morning Post
A country reeling from falling rice prices and foreign investment has its eyes on emergency aid and a boost in trade

Books

10.11.16

The Red Guard Generation and Political Activism in China

Guobin Yang
Raised to be “flowers of the nation,” the first generation born after the founding of the People’s Republic of China was united in its political outlook and ambitions. Its members embraced the Cultural Revolution of 1966 but soon split into warring factions. Guobin Yang investigates the causes of this fracture and argues that Chinese youth engaged in an imaginary revolution from 1966 to 1968, enacting a political mythology that encouraged violence as a way to prove one’s revolutionary credentials. This same competitive dynamic would later turn the Red Guard against the communist government.Throughout the 1970s, the majority of Red Guard youth were sent to work in rural villages. These relocated revolutionaries developed an appreciation for the values of ordinary life, and an underground cultural movement was born. Rejecting idolatry, their new form of resistance marked a distinct reversal of Red Guard radicalism and signaled a new era of enlightenment, culminating in the Democracy Wall movement of the late 1970s and, finally, the Tiananmen protest of 1989. Yang completes his significant recasting of Red Guard activism with a chapter on the politics of history and memory, arguing that contemporary memories of the Cultural Revolution are factionalized along the lines of political division that formed 50 years before. —Columbia University Press{chop}

China Anti-Corruption Campaign Backfires

Hudson Lockett
Financial Times
Xi Jinping drive to cleanse Communist party of graft tarnishes its image

China Seeks Tighter Grip in Wake of a Religious Revival

Ian Johnson
New York Times
Increased regulations on religion are the latest move by President Xi to strengthen the Communist Party’s control over society and combat foreign influences.

Five Ways China Has Become More Repressive Under President Xi Jinping

Charlie Campbell
Time
According to the 2016 report by the U.S. Congressional-Executive Commission on China, there has been a broad corrosion of freedoms

Conversation

10.06.16

Is the Growing Pessimism About China Warranted?

David Shambaugh, David M. Lampton & more from Washington Quarterly
There are few more consequential questions in world affairs than China’s uncertain future trajectory. Assumptions of a reformist China integrated into the international community have given way in recent years to serious concerns about the nation’s...

Conversation

09.21.16

What Should the U.S. Presidential Candidates Be Saying on China?

Winston Lord, Orville Schell & more
Barely eight weeks before the United States presidential election, Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and her Republican rival Donald Trump have said surprisingly little about how they plan to address China—in areas ranging from the global economy...

Chinese Business’ Complicated Role in Kenyan Corruption

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
One of the many simple, widely-believed narratives about the Chinese in Africa is that Chinese businesses fuel corruption across the continent. Chinese corporate corruption in Africa is well documented, from allegations of paying off corrupt...

Viewpoint

09.08.16

Mao the Man, Mao the God

Sergey Radchenko
Mao Zedong was dying a slow, agonizing death. Diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) in July 1974, he gradually lost control of his motor functions. His gait was unsure. He slurred his speech and panted heavily. The decline was...

International Diplomatic Incidents Bring Benefits for China

Jamil Anderlini
Financial Times
Western officials say that negotiations and joint events often feel like exercises in humiliation.

Media

08.25.16

China Analysts Should Talk to Each Other, Not at Each Other

Scott Kennedy
On August 12, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) issued its annual report card on China’s economy and gave the country mixed grades, finding that its “economic transition will continue to be complex, challenging, and potentially bumpy.” In...

Viewpoint

08.11.16

The Future of China’s Legal System

Neysun A. Mahboubi, Carl Minzner & more
In early August, Beijing held show trials of four legal activists—a disheartening turn for those optimistic about legal reform in China. What are the prospects for the development of the rule of law in China under Communist Party Secretary Xi...

China’s Relationship Status with South Africa: ‘It’s Complicated’

Eric Olander, Cobus van Staden & more
South Africa’s relationship with China has undergone a profound transformation in a remarkably short period of time. In less than 20 years, the two countries have gone from barely acknowledging one another to developing a deep partnership that...

Viewpoint

07.14.16

China’s Failure in the South China Sea

Orville Schell
By reiterating its policy of “no acceptance, no participation, no recognition, and no implementation,” China has painted itself into a difficult corner and diminished the chances of resolving the myriad maritime disputes—involving Vietnam, Brunei,...