2013年12月31日 星期二

Taiwan confirmed its second human case of the H7N9 bird flu

Taiwan Confirms Second Human Bird-Flu Case Wall Street Journal
TAIPEI—Taiwan confirmed its second human case of the H7N9 bird flu Tuesday, a sign that the deadly virus is spreading further beyond mainland ...

2013年12月30日 星期一

1947年「 紐約時報」 對二二八大屠殺的報導

1947年 紐約時報 對二二八大屠殺的報導

By taiwancon - 週二 2011年02月22日, 3:07 下午

1947年 紐約時報 對二二八大屠殺的報導
Formosa Killings Are Put at 10,000; Foreigners Say the Chinese Slaughtered Demonstrators Without Provocation
福爾摩沙人死亡人數上達一萬;外籍人士說 中國人屠殺未挑釁的示威者
March 29, 1947, Saturday
Page 6, 554 words
Foreigners say the Chinese slaughtered demonstrators without provocation Nanking, March 28, Foreigners who have just returned to China from Formosa corroborate reports of wholesale slaughter by Chinese troops and police during anti-Government demonstrations a month ago.
These witnesses estimate that 10,000 Formosans were killed by the Chinese armed forces. The killings were described as “completely unjustified" in view of the nature of the demonstrations.

The anti-Government demonstrations were said to have been by unarmed persons whose intentions were peaceful. Every foreign report to Nanking denies charges that Communists or Japanese inspired or organized the parades.
Foreigners who left Formosa a few days ago say that an uneasy peace had been established almost everywhere, but executions and arrests continued. Many Formosans were said to have fled to the hills fearing they would be killed if they returned to their homes.

Three Days of Slaughter:
An American who had just arrived in China from Taihoku said that troops from the mainland arrived there March 7 and indulged in three days of indiscriminate killing and looting. For a time everyone seen on the streets was shot at, homes were broken into and occupants killed. In the poorer sections the streets were said to have been littered with dead. There were instances of beheadings and mutilation of bodies, and women were raped, the American said.
Two foreign women, who were near at Pingtung near Takao, called the actions of the Chinese soldiers there a “massacre." They said unarmed Formosans took over the administration of the town peacefully on March 4 and used the local radio station to caution against violence.

Chinese were well received and invited to lunch with the Formosan leaders. Later a bigger group of soldiers came and launched a sweep through the streets. The people were machine gunned. Groups were rounded up and executed. The man who had served as the town’s spokesman was killed. His body was left for a day in a park and no one was permitted to remove it.
A Briton described similar events at Takao, where unarmed Formosans had taken over the running of the city. He said that after several days Chinese soldiers from an outlying fort deployed through the streets killing hundreds with machine-guns and rifles and raping and looting. Formosan leaders were thrown into prison, many bound with thin wire that cut deep into the flesh.
Leaflets Trapped Many
The foreign witnesses reported that leaflets signed with the name of Generalissimo Chiang Kai-shek promising leniency, and urging all who had fled to return, were dropped from airplanes. As a result many came back to be imprisoned or executed. “There seemed to be a policy of killing off all the best people," one foreigner asserted. The foreigners’ stories are fully supported by reports of every important foreign embassy or legation in Nanking.
Formosans are reported to be seeking United Nations’ action on their case. Some have approached foreign consuls to ask that Formosa be put under the jurisdiction of Allied Supreme Command or be made an American protectorate. Formosan hostility to the mainland Chinese has deepened. Two women who described events at Pingtung said that when Formosans assembled to take over the administration of the town they sang “The Star Spangled Banner."
酥餅的部落格 也有刊載
◎ 2007.2 / 26日 三立新聞 二二八走過ㄧ甲子( 第一集 共13集 )

Soil Pollution Plagues Chinese Coutryside 污染導致中國耕地大量減少 China Uncovers Poor State of its Soil

A farmer worked her land in the shadows of a lead factory in Hengyang, Hunan province, where scholars say soil pollution is especially acute.
Sim Chi Yin for The New York Times

Soil Pollution Plagues Chinese Countryside

Anxiety is growing in China about contaminated soil in the country’s agricultural centers and the potential effects on the food chain.

China Uncovers Poor State of its Soil

Pollution and other effects of urbanization and industrialization continue to take a toll on China's stock of farmland, the government said in a report Monday that provided fresh insight into one of its least understood environmental challenges.

Figures released by the Ministry of Land and Resources on Monday in Beijing indicated as much as 2.5% of China's soil could be too contaminated by heavy metals and other pollutants to farm. Meanwhile, the share of China's land that is arable fell by a fifth of a percent during the three years ended in 2009 due to pollution, urbanization and other reasons, the figures show.

In its report, the first on land conditions made public since 1996, the ministry described the trends as worrisome and said the nation's land situation remains 'grim.' It said China's stock of arable land has fallen in recent years and is less than half the world average per capita, for instance.

Wang Shiyuan, deputy minister of the Land bureau, told the press conference on Monday that China's Communist Party leadership determined fundamental risks remain after being presented recently with soil survey findings.

The Politburo decided, he said, 'We must follow the strictest land protection and land improvement procedures' to stabilize the nation's arable land.

The report left a number of questions about China's soil unanswered. Mr. Wang said the data came from surveys begun in 2006 and that the study was completed in 2009. It also wasn't clear whether the report and data disclosed on Monday fulfill a pledge by the Land Ministry in June to conduct a soil survey. Ministry officials didn't respond to requests for comment.

Chen Nengchang, a soil remediation expert with the Guangdong Institute of Environmental and Soil Sciences, described the release of previously secret information as a 'big step.'

But he said the data don't give much indication of how much land is at risk from mild levels of contamination that could also harm crops. Nor does the release provide a ground-level understanding of problems in specific places.

Contaminated land in China has gotten less domestic and international attention than the country's air and water pollution, which are tracked in ways that increasingly give the public an idea of what is happening. The land problem stems from similar industrialization trends, with ramifications for food quality and farmer health. In May, government tests showed the presence of cadmium, a heavy metal, in some rice supplies in southern Guangdong province.

The problem also strikes close to the leadership's concern that China is poorly positioned to satisfy the rapidly expanding appetites of roughly 20% of the global population with only about 10% of the world's arable land.

China's government itself drew unwanted attention to the issue of polluted land earlier this year when its environmental watchdogs declined to release soil surveys. At one point, bureaucrats described the data as state secrets, prompting widespread consternation from environmentalists and even China's government-run media.

Mr. Wang said medium to heavy pollution rendered unfit for farming some 50 million mu (8.24 million acres). He didn't elaborate and the accompanying report didn't provide a comparable figure, but cited pollutants in the country's major rivers and encroachment of major cities as key causes. A mu is a Chinese measure of area about one-sixth the size of an acre.

The pollution figure equals about 2.5% of China's 2.027 billion mu in total arable land in 2012, according to a calculation by The Wall Street Journal. The total arable land figure, down about 0.2% from 2.031 billion mu in 2009, was also a newly released by the ministry on Monday.

Almost a quarter of China's arable land is located in areas considered poor for farming, such as hillsides, the bureau said.

The government considers a minimum 1.8 billion mu of farmable land a 'red line' for food security. Mr. Wang said the party leaders reiterated the importance of protecting the baseline by ensuring 'the amount of arable land is stabilized.'

China's Communist Party leadership devoted chunks of the plenum policy plan released in November to issues related to rural land, including a pledge to 'shape new types of industry-agriculture and urban-rural relationships.' In recent years, China's land shortage has helped drive facets of its foreign policy, from state-supported purchases of farmland and agro-business groups around the world to its appetite for foreign agricultural commodities like U.S. corn.

James T. Areddy









廣東省生態環境與土壤研究所(Guangdong Institute of Environmental and Soil Sciences)的土壤修復專家陳能場稱,這些原先保密的信息得到公佈是邁出的“重大一步”。






根據《華爾街日報》(The Wall Street Journal)的計算,上述污染面積相當於2012年中國耕地總面積20.27億畝的2.5%左右。耕地總面積也是國土資源部週一新公佈的數據,較2009年的20.31億畝減少了大約0.2%。



在 11月份公佈的第十八屆三中全會政策規劃中,大部分內容和農村土地相關,其中包括承諾“健全新型工農城鄉關係”。近年來,土地短缺已成為影響中國對外政策 的一個因素。無論是政府支持的海外耕地購買、海外農業企業集團投資,還是進口美國玉米等外國農產品,無不反映了土地短缺的影響。

James T. Areddy

2013年12月26日 星期四

泰國局勢: postponement of national elections set for Feb. 2? /反對人士組"平行政府"......鄉村民工的政治力漸大

After the clashes between the police and protesters in Bangkok on Thursday that left one police officer dead and dozens of people injured, the Election Commission of Thailand urged the postponement of national elections set for Feb. 2.

The Last Gasp of Thai Paternalism
Bangkok’s middle classes are terrified by the rising political clout of rural migrant workers.

2013年12月25日 星期三

China Considers Rule Change for Challenging Land Disputes

Chinese authorities are considering rule changes to make it easier for citizens to challenge government authorities in courts over disputes such as land confiscation, Beijing's latest attempt to diffuse social tensions by refining the legal system.

A subgroup of China's legislature began considering draft amendments that would strengthen a law governing how ordinary citizens can appeal government decisions by opening new channels for them to sue official bodies, the state-run Xinhua News Agency reported Tuesday. The agency said the amendment, if adopted, would be the first adjustment in the Administrative Procedure Law since its 1990 adoption.

Citizens find it difficult to challenge official actions in courts, which often refuse to accept cases or enforce judgments, and as a result, people have turned to petitioning the government for redress, according to Xin Chunying, deputy director of a legislative affairs commission for the National People's Congress. Quoted by Xinhua, Ms. Xin said compelling courts to accept and try more cases should reduce public petitioning.

Though the rule change would allow people to challenge government decisions on various fronts, officials indicated one main goal is to address calls in rural China for a say in land reallocation. In November, China's Communist Party vowed to pursue 'uniform' land rights nationwide, a pledge analysts said referred to making just compensation for land seized in rural areas.

Shaky legal grounds governing both the use and transfer of land--and property's soaring value--make control of real estate a particular source of tension in China. In recent years, reports in China have estimated the number of large protests annually at about 180,000. The Legal Daily newspaper in January reported almost a quarter of them were a direct result of land disputes, with others related to the environment.

Avenues to challenge official action in China are few; courts routinely reject such cases. In a survey of plaintiffs whose cases actually were accepted, 60% said they never received feedback, Xinhua said in its report about the draft rule change.

Zhang Dong, a lawyer in Beijing with Jiulong Law Firm who often handles land-dispute cases, said language in the draft rule is potentially important because it would put more onus on courts to accept cases. 'But like other laws in this country, what really matters is whether or not it can be implemented as required,' Mr. Zhang said.

With a court system seen as unresponsive, several million people annually take their grievances to the State Bureau for Letters and Calls, a much-maligned Communist Party-run institution that receives petitions and is rooted in imperial China. Petitioners rarely succeed in their claims and sometimes end up jailed, academics say.

In recent months, Beijing has said it is trying to modernize the petitioning system, including by allowing appeals online. A top bureau official was recently removed on allegations of corruption.

James T. Areddy






由 於中國涉及土地使用和轉讓的法律不完善,加上房地產價格飛漲,使得圍繞土地和房產控制權的爭奪成為中國引發衝突的一大導火索。最近幾年,據國內報告估計, 中國每年大約發生18萬起大規模抗議活動。據《法制日報》1月份報導,這些抗議活動有近四分之一是徵地衝突直接引起的,其他抗議活動則與環境問題有關。


Jiulong Law Firm駐北京的律師張東(音譯)表示,修正案草案的措辭可能很重要,因為它將加大法院受理相關案件力度;但與中國其他法律一樣,真正重要的是相關法律能否按照規定得到執行。



James T. Areddy

2013年12月24日 星期二

Russia Today / 中共祭拜俄共(江春男)

Russia Today








韓国・台湾の液晶メーカー、苦肉の中国現地生産/ a desperate measure

 韓国・台湾の液晶メーカー、苦肉の中国現地生産 日本経済新聞
かつて猛烈な増産投資でシェアを奪い日本勢を経営危機に追い込んだ韓国、台湾メーカーは守りに入っている。台頭する中国勢への対抗策は限られる。苦肉の策 ...

 かつて猛烈な増産投資でシェアを奪い日本勢を経営危機に追い込んだ韓国、台湾メーカーは守りに入っている。台頭する中国勢への対抗策は限られる。 苦肉の策として進めているのは中国での現地生産だ。韓国サムスンディスプレーは10月、先陣を切って江蘇省蘇州市で工場を稼働させた。

a desperate measure/one's last resort

2013年12月23日 星期一




但 這種理論是真的嗎?我最近重讀了美國法學泰斗桑士坦(Cass R. Sunstain)所著的《網路共和國》,又讀了美國亞利桑那州立大學政治教授興德曼(Matthew Hindman)所著的《數位民主之迷失》,他們的說法卻和其他人不同。他們認為政治依靠的是結構與實力,而不是無法發生作用的表達自由。因此統治者縱使 在網路上被人罵到臭頭,這對他們的結構與實力仍然影響不大,他仍在為所欲為。這也就是說,如果網路上的聲音不能集中成為一個結構和固定的實力,它對統治者 根本無法成為威脅,也很難成為改變的力量。



二, 國民黨不管怎麼講,仍是台灣最大的政治結構。它有龐大的黨產,龐大的組織,眾多的地方角頭以及人們無從知悉的金錢資源,以及最龐大的媒體力量,只要一到了 選舉,這些資源一旦發動,它仍是最大的勢力,遠遠的超過了別的勢力。這個人臭了,就換另外的人,它仍是最有可能的贏家。

三,在這個「後 民主」的網路時代,整個民主政治已走往退化的方向,統治者在普通時候完全不理會人民的聲音,笑罵隨便你們,他只管自己的基本群眾加軍公教和富人的利益;到 了選舉的時候,他的結構勢力全部動員並向對手發動抹黑攻勢,他的無能就會被稀釋,一切又會回到基本盤,不致於像人們想的全軍潰敗。「後民主」時代的政治由 於已分為平常時候和選舉時候這兩塊,而這兩塊並不必然相關,這乃是統治者敢膽大妄為的主因。

因此,興德曼教授指出,人們對網路民主所形 成的氣氛不要太信以為真,氣氛可能是假,一定要把這種氣氛變成論述和結構,才可能形成足以改變現狀的結構和力量。今天的台灣,人們太注重網路上的嬉笑怒 罵,太不注重反對結構及勢力的經營,這才是我擔心的。如果一個只有九趴的領導人,他的政黨在未來的選舉中還可以免於潰敗,那就真是台灣民主真正的失敗!

2013年12月22日 星期日

2013年亞洲重大事件/ 中國防空識別區侵蝕台灣主權

2013年12月23日 07:26 AM


今年亞洲最重大的六個事件是什麽?這完全是個主觀問題。為 什麽是六個?怎樣才算是“重大”?此外,既然說到這了,我們這里的亞洲到底是什麽意思?這個詞自希羅多德(Herodotus)時代以來一直被用來指代 “歐洲以東的土地”。不過,現在聖誕節都快到了,我們還是趕快轉入正題吧。我們這里的亞洲就按照英國《金融時報》的定義——大體上包括從印度次大陸到澳大 利亞的地區。這一地區的國家有近40億人口,超過了世界人口的一半。“重大”在這里表示將在很多年裡影響大量人口——這一定義排除了小國里發生的有意義的 事件。
今年也不乏悲慘事件。台風“海燕”(Haiyan)僅在菲律賓就導致了6000多人喪生。印度一位23歲學生遭到強姦和殺害的荒誕事 件也造成很大影響,婦女遭受暴力對待這個長期被忽略的問題一下子引起了人們極大的關註。而在另一個完全不同的國度,時任澳大利亞總理陸克文(Kevin Rudd)斷言大宗商品繁榮時代結束了,凸顯了對中國帶動的“超級周期”結束的擔憂。其他可能的上榜事件包括:在香港有關機構拒絕修改關於企業董事會的規 定之後,阿裡巴巴(Alibaba)放棄了在香港首次公開招股(IPO)融資600億美元的計劃;泰國再次發生騷亂(這一幕似曾相識);巴基斯坦首次完成 和平權力交接,盡管結果是納瓦茲•謝里夫(Nawaz Sharif)第三次出任總理(這又是似曾相識的一幕)。
習 近平鞏固權力。在今年以前,中國領導層變得越來越集體化。新任國家主席扭轉了這一趨勢。他發起了反腐運動,使奢侈品製造商受挫,讓中共乾部噤若寒蟬,這場 運動甚至波及以前“不可撼動”的人物,包括原中共中央政治局常委周永康。習近平很可能將成為鄧小平以來權力最大的中國領導人。這讓他能夠穩妥地實施根本改 革,以解決中國經濟中存在的嚴重低效問題,改革的主要手段是讓市場發揮更大作用。在對外方面,習近平似乎更加不避諱展示中國的力量。
尖 閣諸島/釣魚島及其附屬島嶼。一個跡象是,圍繞東中國海爭議島嶼的緊張局勢日益加劇。北京方面正在試探東京和華盛頓維護日本對這片島嶼行政管轄權的決心。 在美國政府關門期間,美國總統巴拉克•奧巴馬(Barack Obama)缺席了在巴釐島召開的亞太經合組織(APEC)峰會,這件事強化了美國所肩負的責任正在減少的想法。(不過美國在台風海燕過後給予菲律賓的有 力支持有助於消除這種印象。)中國宣佈劃設“防空識別區”——覆蓋爭端島嶼空域——震驚了整個地區,並暴露了美日同盟的裂縫。
安倍經濟學 (Abenomics)。日本應對“中國威脅”的策略之一是由鷹派首相安倍晉三(Shinzo Abe)推出的重振經濟舉措。其主要政策工具是大規模貨幣擴張措施,目的是結束長達15年的通縮。這些舉措為日本經濟註入新活力,然而懷疑論者認為這一政 策將逐漸失去效力。即便日本成功地將通脹再次提高到2%水平,也還需要面對人口老齡化且不斷萎縮的問題。而且,不論安倍經濟學成功與否,它都會給日本經濟 和國際資金流動帶來巨大影響。
對莫迪的熱望。納倫德拉•莫迪(Narendra Modi)在明年5月選舉後有望出任印度總理的可能性讓人們喜憂參半。支持者們希望,身為古吉拉特邦首席部長、印度民族主義政黨——印度人民黨 (Bharatiya Janata)總理候選人的莫迪能夠在全國復制古吉拉特邦經濟上的成就。反對者則擔心莫迪的反穆斯林傾向。他們還表示,莫迪在古吉拉特邦經濟發展中所起的 作用被誇大了,而且該邦經濟發展並未使貧民生活得到多大改善。
退出量化寬松的風聲。這件事並非發生在亞洲,嚴格地說這事還沒發生(註:美聯 儲已宣佈將縮減債券購買規模,此文寫在美聯儲宣佈這個消息之前)。但之前光是風聲就足以讓亞洲市場(特別是印度和印尼)陷入震盪了。在美聯儲真正採取動作 後,那些容易受到資金外逃影響的亞洲經濟體可能會受到重大打擊。
拉納大廈(Rana Plaza)事件。孟加拉國一棟建築倒塌,導致1129人喪生。這一事件引起全世界對孟加拉紡織工業的關註,人們看到,為了生產廉價衣物,數百萬名紡織工 人是在怎樣的悲慘狀況下辛勤工作著。從某些方面來說,孟加拉國的紡織業繁榮是好事,特別是對那些進血汗工廠也算好工作的女性來說。導致拉納大廈大規模死亡 事件的根源,一方面是當地的腐敗,另一方面則是西方企業寧願對工人勞動狀況視而不見。只有在這一事件引發變革,使經濟發展目標與確保人身安全與尊嚴的最低 標準之間能夠取得平衡之後,拉納大廈事件才具有重要意義。本文選擇這一事件,既是對未來的期盼,也是一種美好的願望。



2013年12月18日 星期三

新加坡: 把53名外籍勞工驅逐出境,小印度暴動/ 網路抗議管制 :外籍勞工之痛



新加坡內政部(Ministry of Home Affairs)週二發佈公告稱,新加坡警方已查明這53名未具名勞工(52名為印度籍勞工,另一名為孟加拉國籍勞工)參與了騷亂,而且沒有遵照警方的要求進行疏散。

Chun Han Wong

2013年 12月 10日 16:23



European Pressphoto Agency
周 日發生在新加坡“小印度”區的這起事件不僅終結了新加坡40余年無騷亂的歷史,也給這座城市國家作為亞洲最安全國家之一的形象抹了黑。“小印度”是新加坡 南亞僑民和外籍勞工週末的聚集地。分析人士和勞工維權人士說,新加坡有大量外籍勞工,不同民族之間的緊張情緒不斷加劇,這場騷亂凸現出新加坡決策者在試圖 維護社會凝聚力和抑制排外情緒方面所面臨的日益嚴峻的挑戰。



公 開暴力行為在新加坡幾乎可說是聞所未聞,民眾集會在新加坡受到嚴格控制。但新加坡國立大學李光耀公共政策學院(Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy)經濟學教授Hui Weng Tat說,從某種程度上講,像這樣的事件是一定會發生的,特別是考慮到“小印度”周末會有成千上萬的人聚在那里。他說,一些外籍勞工對所謂的歧視和惡劣工 作條件不滿,可能是導致這場騷亂的原因之一。他還說,決策者或許應該考慮提高外籍勞工的薪資和待遇。

新加坡人力部(Manpower Ministry)在回應外界詢問時說,被逮捕的與騷亂事件有關的外籍勞工受雇于不同雇主,他們被關押在不同地點;沒有證據表明他們的不法行為與工作場所的問題有關;無論如何,沒有人可以凌駕于法律之上。

警 方說,他們已逮捕了27人,其中24人為印度籍,兩人為孟加拉籍,一人是新加坡永久居民,年齡在23歲到45歲之間。這些人的名字尚未公開。不清楚這27 人是否以及何時會被起訴,也不知他們是否得到了法律幫助。新加坡當局將這起事件定性為“持危險武器參與騷亂”,一旦被定罪,將面臨最高10年監禁和鞭刑等 懲罰。警方說,可能會有更多人被逮捕。










Chun Han Wong

 Little India, Singapore
The past two months have been a busy time for Singaporean activists of a hackerish persuasion. Many of them have been declaring their resistance to the government's new "internet-licensing" regime and to plans for a major revision of the Broadcasting Act, due in 2014. Their protests have taken place both on and offline http://econ.st/199DtXf

2013年12月17日 星期二

中國政府允許地方移山填海為賺錢Turbulence Ahead for U.S., China Ties 中國不再韜光養晦了嗎?

China's Sprawling Cities Bet Their Future on Getting Even Bigger

Local Governments Approve Steps Such as Cutting Down Hills to Open New Space

Dec. 16, 2013 10:33 p.m. ET
SHIYAN, China—Authorities here worried a few years ago that the local economy was headed for ruin because there was no more space in this remote city, nestled among towering hills, for industry to grow.
The solution? Level the hills.
Shiyan, China, chops down hills to gain land for development. Tim Franco for The Wall Street Journal
Officials launched a campaign to blast hundreds of hilltops and low mountain peaks, leaving man-made valleys through the forested slopes that surround the city of 800,000 in central China. The goal is to expand its area by 70% so it can draw more manufacturing projects.
"It's very difficult for Shiyan to attract investment," said Gong Bailin, an official of the local economic planning agency. "We've paid a high price, but there's now large scope for further development." The nearly $2 billion hill-chopping plan now is about 60% completed.
Shiyan shows the lengths to which Chinese cities are going as they increasingly rely on land, and revenue from its development, to keep growth going.
The strategy gives cities hope for ever more investment and jobs, provided they can lure enough new factories or other projects to occupy the land they are clearing.
It also loads cities with more debt, exposing them to problems if property and export markets don't keep booming. Beyond that risk is the environmental and social costs from clearing more terrain at a time when popular anger over rapid development and land seizures is growing.
A model of a housing project built on land where hills have been chopped for development. In a measure of tepid demand, the development company has given away cars to lure buyers. Tim Franco for The Wall Street Journal
Industrial parks are a particular concern because of the chance that their roads, power plants, sewage systems and other infrastructure may not draw enough projects to pay for themselves. Chinese industries from steel to shipbuilding already face overcapacity.
Occupancy rates were less than half at about 40% of 341 Beijing-approved industrial parks, according to a survey the Ministry of Land and Resources did in 2011. Analysts said occupancy could be lower still for thousands of other parks without the same high-level support.
Regardless, municipal governments continue to build. "This is what I call the cowboy economy," said Karl Hallding, head of China research at the Stockholm Environment Institute, a research center in Sweden. "Local governments have a lot of power, and the central government seems to have a lot of trouble reining them in."
The push to develop more land is driven largely by local government officials whose career advancement is tied to delivering fast economic growth, analysts say. Clearing more land stimulates economic activity in the short term and holds the long-term promise of being followed by major investments. For city leaders, having plenty of land available is a marketing tool to entice investors.
"Chinese mayors are using land as their banks," said Karen Seto, a professor of the urban environment at Yale University. "They look at the mountains and see they can literally turn them into condominiums."
To launch developments such as industrial parks, local governments usually have to borrow, sometimes heavily. To repay, they count on sales of decadeslong land leases to developers of residential and commercial buildings.
The model has kept working so far, as demand for industrial parks and housing has stayed strong. But as developments proliferate and overall economic growth in China slows, analysts say localities' reliance on land leases makes them vulnerable.
"If the land market cools, land prices drop and the volume of land transfers falls, not only will the funding of some projects experience difficulties, but it will likely produce financial crises," Ba Shusong, a researcher at the Development Research Center, a think tank under China's State Council, said in a recent article in the People's Daily.
Officials debated the issue at a party Central Committee meeting in November, called the Third Plenum. Its final document said officials aimed to "raise the efficiency of cities' use of land," but didn't give specifics.
Exactly how much debt China's local governments have piled up isn't certain, as figures aren't regularly tracked. When the National Audit Office last counted in 2010, it put the figure at 10.72 trillion yuan (about $1.76 trillion). Debt has since risen to the equivalent of $2.46 trillion to $4.92 trillion, or 30% to 60% of China's gross domestic product, according to estimates by government officials and analysts. In the U.S., state and local debt is about 18% of GDP, according to the St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank.
The head of China's National Audit Office, Liu Jiayi, recently said local government debt levels were manageable.
The Third Plenum document promised to make it harder for local governments to take over farmland, potentially threatening that aspect of the cities' strategy. Beijing already imposes some restraints on land seizures, issuing an annual limit to preserve a minimum amount of arable land, around 465,000 square miles.
But cities that have ambitions exceeding Beijing's limits—or are constrained by natural boundaries, as Shiyan is—are seeking out new land sources.
Coastal cities are aggressively creating industrial space by reclaiming land from the sea. In the Bay of Bohai in China's northeast, about 80 square miles of land has been reclaimed around Caofeidian, once a quiet fishing island. Off the coast of Shandong province between Beijing and Shanghai, the town of Longkou plans over three years to create 11 square miles by building a cluster of small islands.
The hill-leveling strategy of Shiyan is also on display in far western China's Gansu province, where about 700 hills are being cut down to make way for a new satellite city outside of the provincial capital, Lanzhou.
Yan'an, where in the 1930s China's Communists hid from Nationalist troops in mountain caves, now has launched a mountain-demolition project.
Shiyan, two hours by car from the nearest commercial airport, was just a village until the late 1960s, when worries about possible war with the Soviet Union led Mao Zedong to relocate much of China's industrial production to the relative safety of mountainous regions. Shiyan, in Hubei province, became home of the Second Automobile Works, which is now known as Dongfeng Motor Corp. and is China's second-largest auto maker by sales.
But in 2003, Dongfeng moved its headquarters to Wuhan, the provincial capital. A Dongfeng joint venture with Nissan Motor Co. 7201.TO +2.54% later followed suit.
Before moving, Dongfeng asked Shiyan for about 80 acres of land, which the city couldn't provide, according to the Shiyan Bureau of Land and Resources. The company, in a written reply to questions, said its aspirations to become an international brand prompted its move to Wuhan, which has better transportation links.
To forestall further departures, Shiyan officials in 2007 made up their mind to create 15 square miles of new land.
"After Dongfeng decided to move the headquarters of two of its units, it looked as though the motor city could become an abandoned city," the Bureau of Land and Resources said. "Leveling mountains has become the golden key to resolve the problem of Shiyan's development impasse."
Demolition crews began using explosives to take down the hills, after which excavators moved in to clear the rubble. A visit in October found excavators scraping at partially razed hilltops, filling fleets of heavy trucks with soft, yellow soil.
Dust hung low in the air throughout a broad area, giving the city a hazy feel.
In villages outside the city, farmers who used to cultivate the hillsides now try to make do with the land left to them on the valley floor. Although the city provided compensation, some farmers complain it doesn't offset their loss of farming income. Village children walk to school along dirt roads cut through the hills, shared with heavy trucks.
"At night we can't sleep because of all the noise" from the land being leveled, said Li Xuefei, a 37-year-old who lives in Qiliyacun, a tiny village at the bottom of a gully next to a residential development.
Bao Wei, deputy director of the Shiyan Environmental Protection Agency, said that "the dust from cutting down the mountains does cause some pollution, but it's not on a big scale, and afterward we restore the bare hills. So all told, the environmental impact isn't too great."
Most of the newly created level land is earmarked for industry and warehouses, with a small amount dedicated to housing.
In January, AB Volvo VOLV-B.SK -0.80% agreed to purchase 45% of a new unit of Dongfeng Motors that is dedicated to making commercial vehicles back in Shiyan.
The site is backed by a white cliff face, the remains of a hill that was split in half to create level land. This fall, workers were busy laying the foundations of a gear factory.
"By leveling the mountains, what did we dig out? We dug out a Volvo," said Pu Guolin, head of agricultural zoning at the city's economic planning agency. "If Shiyan hadn't razed the mountains, there is no way Volvo could have come here."
Dongfeng, asked why it chose Shiyan for the plant, cited the city's experience in making heavy vehicles and the company's sense of responsibility toward its traditional home. Volvo declined to comment.
Shiyan officials said they level hills only after securing industrial tenants, who they said are queuing up. They estimated the Shiyan economy is growing more than 10% this year, well above China's national growth rate of around 7.5%.
Shiyan's statistics bureau said that residential space sold was up 29% in the first half of 2013 from a year earlier.
Still, huge swaths of newly leveled land remain unoccupied. And on a recent day, one residential development built on a cut-down hill was offering free cars to people who bought apartments, while another development nearby was offering customers who were willing to buy an entire floor an additional floor free.
Some underground lenders, an important source of credit in the local economy, said they were no longer willing to lend to property developers or people looking to buy apartments in Shiyan, out of concern that demand is weakening.
Tri-Ring Group Corp., a manufacturing company, is building a factory to produce dump trucks and tractors on 120 acres of new land outside of Shiyan. The company laid the foundations in April 2010 and, according to its website, planned to finish construction in 2011.
A visit to the site in October showed just half of the planned buildings had been constructed, with weather-beaten signs marking what remained to be built. The only evident activity was a handful of workers installing wiring in the gatehouse by the main road.
A spokesman for Tri-Ring said it plans to move into the new facility in May.
Pengyuan Credit Rating, in assessing the company set up by Shiyan's government to handle construction of projects on new land, said that its debts were high, that it would be under pressure in paying the interest and that its income was exposed to fluctuations in property prices.
The government company's cash from selling decadeslong leases on land hasn't been sufficient to cover loan payments over the past two years, and additional borrowing was needed to cover the shortfall, according to details disclosed by the rating firm. The price at which land is offered to developers is only marginally more than it costs to develop land from the hills and mountains, according to city figures.
The government company said it can repay its debts in full and on time.
—Qi Liyan contributed to this article.

Turbulence Ahead for U.S., China Ties

Dec. 17, 2013 5:31 a.m. ET

China's foreign relations in modern times—particularly with the U.S. and Asian neighbors—have been guided by a doctrine of prudence embodied in Deng Xiaoping's famous maxim "taoguang, yanghui"—"bide our time; hide our capabilities."
Mr. Deng correctly calculated that once the world understood the full implications of an emerging Asian giant, it would stir up anxieties and upset the external harmony that China needed to pursue its economic development. He was suspicious, too, that the U.S. secretly...

2013年12月14日 星期六

U.S. Navy-China showdown: Chinese try to halt U.S. cruiser in international waters

U.S. Navy-China showdown: Chinese try to halt U.S. cruiser in international waters

The USS Cowpens seen here in this Defense Department photo.The USS Cowpens seen here in this Defense Department photo.
A Chinese naval vessel tried to force a U.S. guided missile warship to stop in international waters recently, causing a tense military standoff in the latest case of Chinese maritime harassment, according to defense officials.
The guided missile cruiser USS Cowpens, which recently took part in disaster relief operations in the Philippines, was confronted by Chinese warships in the South China Sea near Beijing’s new aircraft carrier Liaoning, according to officials familiar with the incident.

“On December 5th, while lawfully operating in international waters in the South China Sea, USS Cowpens and a PLA Navy vessel had an encounter that required maneuvering to avoid a collision,” a Navy official said.
“This incident underscores the need to ensure the highest standards of professional seamanship, including communications between vessels, to mitigate the risk of an unintended incident or mishap.”
A State Department official said the U.S. government issued protests to China in both Washington and Beijing in both diplomatic and military channels.
The Cowpens was conducting surveillance of the Liaoning at the time. The carrier had recently sailed from the port of Qingdao on the northern Chinese coast into the South China Sea.
According to the officials, the run-in began after a Chinese navy vessel sent a hailing warning and ordered the Cowpens to stop. The cruiser continued on its course and refused the order because it was operating in international waters.
Then a Chinese tank landing ship sailed in front of the Cowpens and stopped, forcing the Cowpens to abruptly change course in what the officials said was a dangerous maneuver.

According to the officials, the Cowpens was conducting a routine operation done to exercise its freedom of navigation near the Chinese carrier when the incident occurred about a week ago.
The encounter was the type of incident that senior Pentagon officials recently warned could take place as a result of heightened tensions in the region over China’s declaration of an air defense identification zone (ADIZ) in the East China Sea.
Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, recently called China’s new air defense zone destabilizing and said it increased the risk of a military “miscalculation.”
China’s military forces in recent days have dispatched Su-30 and J-11 fighter jets, as well as KJ-2000 airborne warning and control aircraft, to the zone to monitor the airspace that is used frequently by U.S. and Japanese military surveillance aircraft.
The United States has said it does not recognize China’s ADIZ, as has Japan’s government.
Two U.S. B-52 bombers flew through the air zone last month but were not shadowed by Chinese interceptor jets.
Chinese naval and air forces also have been pressing Japan in the East China Sea over Tokyo’s purchase a year ago of several uninhabited Senkaku Islands located north of Taiwan and south of Okinawa.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/dec/13/us-navy-china-showdown-chinese-try-halt-us-cruiser/#ixzz2nRxD7t8Q
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

2013年12月12日 星期四

張成澤傳遭「犬決」 死的死逃的逃: Kim Jong-un 當場羞辱 Jang Song-thaek张成泽,中国“重拾权力诉求”,韩国“火上浇油”

張成澤傳遭「犬決」 金正恩全程觀看

【陳 怡妏/綜合外電報導】關於北韓「攝政王」張成澤遭革職整肅的原因眾說紛紜,一般認為是領導人金正恩在鞏固實權,但德國駐北韓大使薩佛獨排眾議12日表示, 北韓軍方是因張成澤推動和中國的經濟合作計劃,威脅到軍方地位,決定剷除。日本防衛大臣小野寺五典12日也表示,張成澤在勞動黨政治局會上被公開帶走的畫 面,讓他聯想到中國文化大革命的場面,擔心北韓未來可能會發生動盪。



News Analysis
A Gamble for North Korea’s Young Leader

In publicly dismissing his uncle and mentor, Jang Song-thaek, above being forced out of a meeting, Kim Jong-un removed a potential challenger to his power.






(德国之声中文网)德国《世界报在线》政治板块周日(12月9日)刊登了题为"中国试探邻国的实力"(China testet die Stärke seiner Nachbarn)的文章,指出:目前在东中国海海域的争端是一场中国和邻国及美国的争端。"到目前为止,相关国家只是摆出了威胁的态度。但这还是唤起了 人们对1914年的回忆,那时欧洲陷入一片战火之中。"
Südkorea Kampfflugzeug 韩国军队正在和美英两国举行联合军演
作者在文章的开头写道:"看上去,东亚的几大强国想在1914年那场全球性灾难纪念日来临之际让世界看到,我们是如何能够从平衡转向失 衡,从对抗转向冲突,从紧张局势转向战争局势的。东、南中国海的局势以及被中国视为安全缓冲区的睦邻关系已经变得非常危险。对于直接的参与方来说是这样, 对于全球的贸易、原材料供应和能源价格来说也是如此。"
文章随后指出,在军事部署威胁以及空军演习的伴随下,想要缓解逐渐紧张的关系,就务必需要治国才能,克制的态度以及'后台外交 '(Backchannel-Diplomatie)。"但到目前为止,我们看到情况则完全相反。过去几百年里的分割土地和殖民扩张已变为对海域和空域的 争夺。联合国新出台的海洋法让许多控制区出现重叠,同时中国和美国都以不信任对方的眼神盘旋在那里,世界上没有其他任何一个地方的情况比这两种因素的组合 更加危险。"
作者认为:"联合国没有足够的实力在这场争端中充当裁判的角色。它只能局限于奉行四平八稳的政策。而全世界该做好哪些准备呢?人们管这个叫做冲突的横向升 级,也就是说多个地点同时陷入几乎冲突一触即发的境地,但没有人开火。中国有时间,却没有多少耐心,它正在试验自己重新获得的实力,并试探其邻国的忍耐度和外交手腕。但它最主要的目标其实是在亚太地区能与其分庭抗礼的美国。"
同时,德广联新联播也关注了韩国本周日(12月9日)宣布扩大防空识别区的消息。发表了题为"韩国为岛屿争端火上浇油"(Südkorea befeuert Inselstreit)的文章。其中指出:"继中国在东中国海域设立备受争议的防空识别区后,韩国也宣布将扩大其防空识别区。首尔国防部公布的这一区域与中国的访识区部分重叠。"
Biden mit Park Geun-hye in Seoul 06.12.2013 美国是韩国坚定的支持者
德国《明镜在线》(Spiegel Online)则于周日当天发表文章称:"韩国扩大了它在东中国海海域的防空识别区,这是针对中国的挑衅行为。"文章援引韩国国防部报道称:"这一区域与北京之前设立的防空识别区有重叠的部分。"

2013年12月11日 星期三

Thailand Rancor Swells / 泰國大分裂/ 曼谷開槍 Acts of heroism abound in the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan

Thailand Rancor Swells as Protesters Push for Eradication of Shinawatra Family From Politics3


Dylan Martinez/Reuters

總理英拉·西那瓦(Yingluck Shinawatra)周一早上在電視播放的一則聲明中說,「讓人民來決定國家的方向以及誰將成為執政的多數。」
  • 檢視大圖 周日,反對派領導人阿披實·威差奇瓦(前排左邊第二個)和黨內成員在民主黨位於曼谷的總部開會。
    Chaiwat Subprasom/Reuters

抗議領導人安佳麗·派里拉克(Anchalee Paireerak)在提到選舉時說,「那不是我們的目的。我們會繼續遊行。」
反對黨一直都因自己無法在選舉中擊敗由富豪他信·西那瓦(Thaksin Shinawatra)支持的強大政治機器而深感沮喪。他信曾任泰國總理,目前流亡在國外,英拉是他的妹妹。
上次選舉是在2011年7月舉行的,當時執政黨獲得了1570萬張選票,而反對黨民主黨(Democrat Party)獲得的選票數量為1140萬張。
周日辭職的一位議員提普泰·西納彭(Theptai Seanapong)說,「我們贏不了他們。即使我們在議會表決中同時舉起手和腳,我們都永遠不會獲勝。」
抗議領袖之一、民主黨的一位前議會成員薩迪特·翁農托(Sathit Wongnongtoey)周一說,如果像憲法規定的那樣,由現任政府作為看守政府來維持局面的話,他擔心選舉中將會出現「作弊」。
這種對選舉政治的不信任對整個東南亞地區都有影響,比如馬來西亞的執政黨一直在嚴格操縱選區的劃分;還有在柬埔寨,獨裁總理洪森(Hun Sen)利用國家機器和軍隊鞏固自己的權力。柬埔寨反對派指責7月份大選中出現大範圍的選舉舞弊,至今仍繼續抵制議會。
泰國與這些國家的一個主要區別是,他信所在的政黨受到多數選民歡迎的這個事實沒有什麼爭議。學者們說,執政的為泰黨(Pheu Thai Party)通過採取對地方選民、尤其是泰國北部的選民有利的政策,而令人信服地贏得了自2011年以來的每一次選舉。
在目前的示威中,抗議活動的領導人已經在拉攏軍方,很多抗議者公開呼籲要再來一次政變。但到現在為止,陸軍總司令巴育(Prayuth Chan-ocha)似乎對介入這場危機保持謹慎態度。
泰國報紙《今日郵報》(Post Today)周日報道稱,巴育說政變不能解決泰國的問題。該報援引他的話說,「我們必須要耐心地尋求一種和平的解決方案。」
Poypiti Amatatham對本文有報道貢獻。



News Analysis
Protests Reflect Deep Divisions in Thailand
Experts say Thailand is seeing a steady unraveling of an old consensus about who wields political power and who receives government largess.


Thailand protests turn deadly, gunshots fired in Bangkok

Deadly gunshots have been fired as opponents and supporters of Thai Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra have clashed in Bangkok. Thai security officials have said military backup is being deployed to quell the violence.
At 18, Jomar Pascual is the head of his orphaned family of four brothers and a sister in Tacloban, the Philippines.
Grief and Heroism as Survivors Struggle in the Philippines


Acts of heroism abound in the Philippines after Typhoon Haiyan, often with a special emphasis on ensuring the survival of children.




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德国之声 27.11.2013 | 16:00 UTC





中国近日宣布新设"东海防空识别区",引起美日等国批评抗议。周二,美国两架B52远程轰炸机飞经东中国海引起争议的海区空域。中国国防部之后表示,中方进行了"全程监控、及时识别判明了美方飞机类型",并称"中方有能力对相关空域实施有效管控"。就中国设立"东海防空识别区"及影响,本台记者采访了美国华盛顿《防务新闻》周刊亚洲部负责人颜文德(Minnick Wendell)。

美军“挑战”防空识别区 北京反应克制



更新時間 2013年11月28日, 格林尼治標準時間03:26
(編譯:蕭爾  責編:李莉)

泰國反政府抗議升級 首都加強戒備