Mao Zedong

Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks during the opening session of the 20th Party Congress at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, on 16 October 2022. (Noel Celis/AFP)

What’s new in Xi Jinping's 20th Party Congress report

The Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s 20th Party Congress opened with CCP General Secretary Xi Jinping giving a summary of the party report, during which he highlighted the key achievements over the past five years, as well as the way forward. Zaobao correspondent Yu Zeyuan takes us through the key points and what to expect over the next few days.
Chinese President Xi Jinping stands near former Chinese presidents Hu Jintao, Jiang Zemin and Premier Li Keqiang on Tiananmen Gate during the military parade marking the 70th founding anniversary of People's Republic of China, on its National Day in Beijing, China, 1 October 2019. (Jason Lee/Reuters)

How Xi Jinping consolidated power over the past decade

As the 20th Party Congress approaches, Zaobao correspondent Yu Zeyuan looks at the power game in China. He examines evolving rhetorics and terms used by Chinese leaders since Mao, and reflects on the way President Xi Jinping has consolidated and enshrined power in the past decade.
Chinese President Xi Jinping attends an extended-format meeting of heads of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) member states at a summit in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, 16 September 2022. (Sputnik/Sergey Bobylev/Pool via Reuters)

[Party and the man] Factions and fence-sitters in Xi Jinping's China

While Chinese politicians can be classified into different factional groups such as the princelings, the Shanghai gang, the Youth League group, and the Tsinghua clique, these are not necessarily functional factions in real politics. What is more pertinent is politicians’ relations with the paramount leader, Xi Jinping, who has in the last ten years tried to eliminate the various factions and lump them into one loosely connected “anti-Xi faction”. This is the second in a series of four articles on President Xi Jinping and the road ahead.
Customers dine near a giant screen broadcasting news footage of Chinese President Xi Jinping attending a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin, on the sidelines of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) summit in Uzbekistan, at a restaurant in Beijing, China, 16 September 2022. (Tingshu Wang/Reuters)

[Party and the man] Xi Jinping faces biggest challenges in decades

While Chinese President Xi Jinping is likely to secure a third term at the 20th Party Congress, Loro Horta recalls the saying that one should “be careful what you wish for”. The road ahead in his third term looks to be fraught with challenges, both domestically and externally. This is the first in a series of four articles on President Xi Jinping and the road ahead.
People pass by portraits of Chinese President Xi Jinping and late Chinese chairman Mao Zedong, in Shanghai, China, 31 August 2022. (Aly Song/Reuters)

[State of our world] From Three Worlds to Four: Mao’s revised theory of an emerging global order?

Russian academic Artyom Lukin revisits Mao’s Three Worlds Theory to explain that while the world looks to be on the cusp of great change, the paradigms of the past can still inform the future. Much will depend on the “fourth world” of Russia and other perceived US adversaries who are drawing closer to China. This is the third in a series of four articles contemplating a changing world order.
Members of the honour guard prepare for a welcoming ceremony at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, 25 October 2019. (Jason Lee/Reuters)

The PLA’s political role: The party still, and must always control the gun

While the Chinese government has paid more attention to the navy and air force contingents of the People’s Liberation Army in recent times, it is still the land forces that have the most political influence. The party is well aware that it is the latter’s might they would need in the event of internal uprisings and it is this constituent’s loyalty and strength they must ensure.
A screen displays a CCTV state media news broadcast showing Chinese President Xi Jinping addressing world leaders at the G20 meeting in Rome via video link at a shopping mall in Beijing, China, 31 October 2021. (Thomas Peter/Reuters)

Xi Jinping's misguided return to ideology

East Asian Institute senior research fellow Lance Gore argues that two contexts made Xi’s resurrection of ideological orthodoxy almost inevitable — Leninist party rule and China’s rise on the global stage. But Xi’s return to ideology may be to China’s detriment, as it could reverse achievements of the reform and opening up era, and also set China on a collision course with Western liberal democracies.
A woman rides a bicycle along a street in Beijing, China, on 6 April 2022. (Jade Gao/AFP)

Why China's 'peaceful rise' will be particularly difficult

EAI academic Lance Gore notes that China’s “peaceful rise” is a particular hard sell because it involves the rise of a major heterogeneous civilisational power, which is different from the mere transfer of hegemony between states from the same civilisation. Thus China needs to work on gaining acceptance from the international community by conveying the merits of its civilisational traits and avoiding pitfalls such as a reversion to cultural dead wood or failed Marxist orthodoxy.
Students take part in an evacuation drill in a primary school in Kunming, Yunnan province, China, 11 May 2022. (CNS)

China wants to create a new democratic system. Is that possible?

Domestic and external pressures compel China to face the issue of democracy. With growing affluence and diversity in the population, the government needs to find a way to incorporate various views that goes beyond the Mao-era “mass line”. In forging a new path, the Chinese Communist Party is feeling its way around bringing about a socialist neo-democracy, or what has been verbalised as “whole-process people’s democracy”. But what stands in the way of putting thought into action?