Archive for October 4th, 2012

Thursday, October 4, 2012

China’s Claim on the Senkakus: Liu Xiaoming’s Daily Telegraph Article in Full (probably)

PRC ambassador to Britain, Liu Xiaoming (刘晓明), wrote an article for the Daily Telegraph, published online by the Telegraph on Wednesday, and by China News Service on Thursday.

The following is no translation in full, but you will find the full Chinese wording – according to China News Service – here.

The Telegraph version is shorter, and the emphasis is at times different, too. China News Service says that their version is the ambassador’s article in full. The following paragraphs are excerpts from the Chinese and the Telegraph versions.

Liu Xiaoming’s article for the Daily Telegraph, as quoted by China News Service online:

My first post as an ambassador was in Egypt. This ancient and beautiful country left many unforgettable memories, among them, the Mena House Hotel at the feet of the Cheops Pyramid, where the Cairo meeting was held. On November 27, 1943, it was here that the heads of China, Britain and America discussed the Japanese war and post-war order and plans, and produced the “Cairo Declaration”.

我首次担任驻外大使是在埃及。这个古老美丽的国度给我留下了许多难忘的记忆,其中包括我多次访问过的金字塔脚下不远的开罗会议故址——米那豪斯饭店。1943年11月27日,就是在这里,中国、英国和美国三国首脑共同商讨对日作战和战后国际秩序重建大计,并发表了举世瞩目的《开罗宣言》。

According to the Daily Telegraph:

My first ambassadorial post was to Egypt. I have many memories of this ancient and beautiful country. One is the Mena House Hotel, which I visited many times. Situated at the foot of the spectacular Cheops Pyramid, the hotel is the venue that produced the famous Cairo Declaration. It was published on 27 November 1943 after discussions between the leaders of China, Britain and the United States, and was the master plan for rebuilding international order following the war with Nazi Germany and Japan.

[…]

China News Service online:

History does not tolerate the reversal of a verdict. The Second World War brought deep suffering to many people, which cannot be forgotten. China and Britain have both suffered from fascism, which has deeply influenced them. Chinese and British forces once were in the battlefield, resisting and attacking Japanese fascism shoulder to shoulder, and made major contributions to the world’s victory over fascism. To acknowledge the results of the victory over fascism, to protect the post-war order, and to defend the “United Nations Charter’s” goals and principles is the common responsibility of Chinese and British society.

历史不容翻案。第二次世界大战给人类带来的深重灾难不容忘记。中英两国都是法西斯主义的受害者,对二战感同深受。中英两国军队曾在战场上并肩抗击日本法西斯,为世界反法西斯正义战争取得胜利做出了重要贡献。肯定反法西斯战争胜利成果,维护战后国际秩序,捍卫《联合国宪章》的宗旨和原则,是中英两国和国际社会的共同责任。

Daily Telegraph:

History shall not be reversed. We must not forget the untold sufferings incurred during World War II. China and Britain are both victims of fascism. We have shared memories and pains. Chinese and British troops fought side by side on the battleground against Japanese military fascism. It is the common responsibility of China and Britain and the entire international community to reaffirm the outcomes of the war against fascism and maintain the post-war international order.

China News Service:

German chancellor Brandt’s courage to kneel in Warsaw and his sincerity won Germany new trust and respect, in contrast to Japan, which lost the war, too, but never abandoned its historical baggage, which didn’t deeply reflect on its war crimes, which didn’t sincerely apologize, but rather tried to reverse history. This not only makes it hard to be trusted by its neighbors, but also keeps it from being forgiven by the world.

德国勃兰特总理“华沙一跪”的勇气与真诚为德国重新赢得信任与尊重,与之形成鲜明对比,同是战败国的日本却死背历史包袱不放,对其战争罪行缺乏深刻反省,没有真诚道歉,反而企图对历史翻案,这不仅难以取信于邻,更得不到世界人民的原谅。

Daily Telegraph:

Nazism was born in Germany. On December 7, 1970, West German Chancellor Willy Brandt travelled to Poland and dropped to his knees before the monument to the Warsaw Ghetto uprising of 1943. Many in the world were deeply moved by this famous gesture of repentance and apology. The extraordinary courage and sincerity of Germany won it trust and respect.

[…]

The last paragraphs of the China News Service version are much more lengthy and angry than the one published by the Daily Telegraph. Other paragraphs may differ from version to version, too – I just translated the ones that caught my eye right away.

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Related

» Hawaii, not Pearl Harbor, Sep 7, 2012

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Thursday, October 4, 2012

The Presidential Debate and Voice of America: “Very Rusty Tonight”

“He was very rusty tonight” – that’s how the BBC quotes New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof as he “rated”  U.S. president Barack Obama‘s performance.  Mitt Romney‘s performance, on the other hand, was probably a positive surprise to many of the Republican supporters.

For cultural reasons probably, I wouldn’t have been able to tell who of the two candidates did better – except that Obama occasionally seemed to lack concentration or focus -, but many commenters seemed to see that lack throughout the debate. Romney had his share of stutters, too, but he seemed to be more focused. And as for my lack of cultural insight, Michael Moore filled some of my gaps – because he criticized the moderator, Jim Lehrer:

Eastwood’s chair would do a better job moderating this debate. Romney is both candidate and moderator. Has Clinton arrived yet???!

Maybe Moore would “stop the subsidy to PBS”, just as Mitt Romney would. Anyway – Moore’s criticism of Lehrer seems to suggest to me that he sees Romney as the winner of this debate. But then, maybe Lehrer did a lousy job. Again, for cultural reasons, I can’t tell.

They say that presidential debates don’t sway many voters either way in America. Television debates in Germany don’t either – at least that’s what German television watchers say themselves. Either way, I remember a German television debate where the incumbent looked unusually tired during the first debate, and then went on to “win” the second and last debate: that was Gerhard Schröder, against his challenger Edmund Stoiber, in summer 2002. Similar to Romney, nobody ever expected Stoiber to do well in a debate – that worked to his advantage, at least in the beginning.

What I can tell though is that the Voice of America (VoA) did a lousy job. I tried all their far-Eastern frequencies at 01:00 UTC, and got nothing but international news there – I stopped trying at 01:25 UTC and then watched the debate on the internet. Granted – 09:00 a.m. local time in China or 08:00 a.m. in Vietnam may not be a time when too many people would listen to the radio anyway. But then, why would they bother to broadcast to the region at that time of the day at all?

No matter if Jim Lehrer did a good or bad job, presidential debates are a proud institution – something VoA should cover live – on shortwave.

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