One Country, Two Systems? Although none of the booksellers have disclosed their locations, a few have been in sporadic contact with family members to communicate, in opaque terms, that they are “assisting in an investigation.” On the phone with his wife, Sophie Choi, earlier last week, Lee conveyed that he was calling from Shenzhen, specifying that he, too, was voluntarily helping with a case but, strangely, spoke in Mandarin, the standard mainland dialect, rather than his native Cantonese. [more inside]
We Should All Step Back from Security Journalism. I’ll Go First. Quinn Norton (previously) responds to the sentencing of Barrett Brown (previously.) [Via]
As the plane descended into Rangoon's international airport, I noticed a slight change in my heartbeat. I felt calm, but also excited, knowing that I was about to return to Burma for the first time in 24 years. Former student dissident and exiled journalist Aung Zaw spends Five Days in Burma. [more inside]
Getting Away with Murder - The Impunity Index. The Committee to Protect Journalists' 2011 Impunity Index spotlights the 13 worst countries where journalists are slain and killers go free. The CPJ is also behind the International Press Freedom Awards. This year's awards are taking place in New York, Nov 22nd. The recipients are: Mansoor al-Jamri - Bahrain. Natalya Radina, Belarus. Javier Arturo Valdez Cárdenas, Mexico and Umar Cheema, Pakistan.
At least nine foreign and six Libyan jouranlists are missing in Libya. Three of the Western journalists were spotted in a detention camp in Tripoli.Two others are still missing and unaccounted for, South African Anton Lazarus Hammerl and American freelancer Matthew VanDyke. The Committee to Protect Journalists has documented over 80 attacks on the press in the last month. With Qaddafi forces firing cluster bombs in civilian areas, one wonders how we can expect these journalists to be returned safely home. Perhaps Turkey can intercede? There is a facebook campaign for at least one of the journalists. Of course, this problem is worldwide.
Beijing 2008: China's Olympian Human Rights Challenges. This website was set up by Human Rights Watch to monitor human rights issues in China during the run-up to the Olympics. "This is a historic opportunity for China to show it has the confidence to make tangible and sustainable progress in ensuring basic human rights for its 1.3 billion citizens." [more inside]
China Praises Its Progress Toward Olympics. With one year to go before the 2008 Olympics, China still has many challenges ahead, like dealing with Beijing's terrible air pollution. There is still much criticism over China's record on human rights and freedom of the press, and some protests. But perhaps the most embarrassing public relations setback is that one of the official mascots, Yingsel (aka Yingying) the Tibetan Antelope, has defected from China's Olympic team and gone underground to campaign for a free Tibet. [Some links via BB and MoFi.]
China’s veteran voices of reform by Li Datong (李大同). Li is the former editor of Freezing Point, an influential Chinese weekly supplement to the China Youth Daily. His frequent clashes with his superiors and bold publishing stance there led to his sacking and the temporary closure of the magazine, but he now has a regular column in English at openDemocracy. Here, Li looks at how Party elders are using the pages of the journal 炎黄春秋 (Yanhuang Chunqiu "Chinese Chronicles") to promote a reform agenda quite daring in the Chinese context, making reformists hopeful about the upcoming Seventeenth National Congress of the CCP.
EastSouthWestNorth is a breath of fresh air. Looking for Chinese news in English is pretty frustrating. There is Xinhua, the CPC mouthpiece, and it's outlets like the China Daily. The fluffy Beijing Today isn't much better, geared more towards vapid expats. For an interesting take on China from a Chinese perspective, EastSouthNorthWest translates news from independent Chinese sources to give a picture of China inaccessible to the foreign ear. Everything from religious and press freedom to magical man tubers is covered. EastSouthWestNorth previously discussed here, as a much different site.