Politics

A banner marking the centenary of the Chinese Community Party is seen at a subway station in Shanghai, China on 28 June 2021. (Qilai Shen/Bloomberg)

Former Singapore FM George Yeo on CCP’s centenary: The Chinese revolution continues

George Yeo, Singapore’s former foreign minister, shares his thoughts on China’s evolution with Lianhe Zaobao on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party. He sees the milestone as just a pitstop in the long journey of the Chinese nation. Fresh thinking and innovation will be needed as the country progresses. Equally important, developing a “broad-minded and big-hearted nationalism” which is humble and learns from others will keep China on the path of being a great nation. Here are edited excerpts from the interview.
Performers wave national and party flags as they rehearse before the event marking the 100th founding anniversary of the Communist Party of China, at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China, 1 July 2021. (Carlos Garcia Rawlins/Reuters)

Rise of China's CCP and demise of USSR's CPSU: A tale of two communist parties

The CCP has much to be proud of on the 100th anniversary of its founding on 1 July. Coincidentally, this year also marks the 30th anniversary of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union (CPSU)’s demise. Chinese leaders have learnt much from the Soviet Union’s experience, not least the importance of a people-centric approach. In fact, the party is undergoing a grand synthesis of its reforms to chart the country’s way forward. However, amid problems such as regional disparities and insatiable expectations, fresh solutions need to be found. The CCP also needs to present a brand new image of itself in the international arena.
Performers rally around the party's flag during a show commemorating the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Communist Party of China at the National Stadium in Beijing, China, 28 June 2021. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)

A secretive centenary celebration: Can the CCP be more open?

Amid paltry information released by the authorities, Yang Danxu has learnt to rely on “traffic updates” for a heads-up on events marking the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Chinese Communist Party. On the actual anniversary date tomorrow, it seems that a ceremony at Tiananmen Square will be a main event. 100 years after its founding, the CCP still seems shrouded in mystery, not least the details of its centenary celebrations. As the party moves forward, will it let a little more light shine in?
Vladimir Putin, Russia's president, left, and U.S. President Joe Biden, right, react at the start of the U.S. Russia summit at Villa La Grange in Geneva, Switzerland, on 16 June 2021. (Peter Klaunzer/Swiss Federal Office of Foreign Affairs/Bloomberg)

Can Biden 'set up' the US and Russia against China?

Chinese academic Zhang Jingwei notes that the recent meeting between US President Joe Biden and Russian President Vladimir Putin was a step towards easing US-Russia relations. But fundamental tensions remain, not least due to NATO’s wariness of Russia and the US-China-Russia triangle.
In this file photo, Russian President Vladimir Putin (left) shakes hands with US President Joe Biden prior to the US-Russia summit at the Villa La Grange, in Geneva, Switzerland, on 16 June 2021. (Brendan Smialowski/AFP)

The real reset of US-Russia relations has begun?

While international opinion has largely been negative about the outcomes of the Biden-Putin summit in Geneva, Xiang Lanxin remains positive, saying that the US nursed Russia’s psychological wound by referring to the two countries as “two great powers” and paved the way for the US and Russia to work together against the China threat.
G7 leaders attend a working session during the G7 summit in Carbis Bay, Cornwall, Britain, 12 June 2021. (Leon Neal/Pool via Reuters)

D10 group of democracies: A stronger alliance to contain China?

Chinese PhD candidate Du Zhiyuan notes that the recent G7 summit in the UK involving G7 members and guests was in fact a gathering of a “D10” club of democratic partners, along the lines proposed by British PM Boris Johnson. And the D10, in turn, could ultimately lead to a trans-Atlantic/Indo-Pacific alliance better fit to contain China.
A Palestinian girl plays amidst the rubble of buildings destroyed by last month's Israeli bombardment of the Gaza Strip, in Beit Lahia, in the northern part of the Palestinian enclave on 19 June 2021. (Mahmud Hams/AFP)

China needs to reset its approach to the Palestinian issue — fast

From its biased stance towards Palestine in the recent Gaza-Israel conflict and the way it has tried to bring in the Xinjiang issue, it is clear that China is getting its approach to Palestine and Israel all wrong, says Fan Hongda. Amid a vastly changed political landscape in the Middle East, China needs to recalibrate its strategy. Otherwise, not only will it have little influence in the Gaza-Israeli conflict, it will end up on the back foot in defending its affairs in Xinjiang.
Workers set Chinese national flags on a shopping street ,ahead of a rehearsal for the celebrations to mark the 100th founding anniversary of the Communist Party of China, in Beijing, China, 26 June 2021. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

China's new-found confidence to hit back at the West

China has often been criticised by the West over various issues, from human rights to the South China Sea to the origins of the coronavirus. However, recent developments have given China confidence and grounds to hit back at the West as well as Japan. Most recently, China accused the West of its poor human rights records in treating indigenous people and their history, the UK's right of rule over Islas Malvinas (Falkland Islands), and Japan’s decision to discharge nuclear wastewater into the sea. Zaobao correspondent Yu Zeyuan explains China’s fresh confidence.
A supporter gestures while holding the final edition of Apple Daily in Hong Kong, China, 24 June 2021. (Lam Yik/Reuters)

Beijing’s message behind the closure of Hong Kong’s Apple Daily

Han Yong Hong observes that the Hong Kong pro-democracy paper Apple Daily meant different things to different people. Its own history and rise to infamy was also chequered and at times conflicting. But its demise just before 1 July seems to indicate that the central government is sending a clear message that without “one country”, there can be no “two systems”.