Freedom of speech

Competitors in a cross-country skiing event at the 2022 Beijing Winter Olympics, National Cross-Country Centre, Zhangjiakou, China, 16 February 2022. (Lindsey Wasson/Reuters)

Media coverage of Beijing Winter Olympics shows parallel worlds

It seems that the Chinese and foreign media have very different approaches to covering the Beijing Winter Olympics — Chinese journalists want to portray the favourable side of the Games while foreign journalists tend to take a more critical stand in focusing on problems. Zaobao correspondent Yang Danxu examines this phenomenon.
Abortion rights advocates and anti-abortion protesters demonstrate in front of the US Supreme Court in Washington, DC, on 1 December 2021. (Jim Watson/AFP)

Rise of Christian nationalism and its threat to US-China rivalry

A year on from the US Capitol attacks, Peter T.C. Chang reflects that the siege may have been the moment where America turned from championing “end of history” universalism to succumbing to “clash of civilisations" sectarianism. Worryingly, the rise of Christian nationalism could plunge America into internal turmoil and drag tense US-China geopolitical rivalry into uncharted waters.
Students attend their graduation ceremony at South Carolina State University on 17 December 2021, in Orangeburg, South Carolina, US. (Mandel Ngan/AFP)

Are American universities veering too far left?

Some Chinese academics and international students in the US think that far-left tendencies are going overboard in American universities and even fear the dawning of an “American Cultural Revolution”. Are these fears unfounded? What does the profile of those who hold far-left views and have a mission to champion social justice tell us about the evolution of American society?
Peng Shuai in a screen grab from a Zaobao video interview, 19 December 2021. (SPH Media)

Zaobao exclusive video interview: Peng Shuai says she made no claims of sexual assault

In a doorstop interview at a cross-country ski competition in Shanghai, Chinese tennis player Peng Shuai tells Zaobao unequivocally that she has neither talked nor written about sexual assaults against her. This follows her earlier Weibo post which caused a furore when it seemed to level sexual assault allegations at former Chinese Vice-Premier Zhang Gaoli. While the post was later removed and Peng has appeared at public events, the international community continues to question her safety and well-being. Gu Gonglei has the story.
Dr Zhang Wenhong, China’s top infectious diseases expert and head of the Center for Infectious Disease at Huashan Hospital. (Internet)

Who saved Dr Zhang Wenhong from punishment for questioning China's Covid-19 policy?

China's top infectious diseases expert Dr Zhang Wenhong was recently embroiled in an alleged academic fraud case but investigations have cleared his name later on. The investigation came after he put forward the view of "living with the virus", which is at odds with the official stance for achieving zero-Covid. Who protected Dr Zhang from punishment? Was it public opinion, the city of Shanghai or Dr Zhang's impeccable moral standards? Will this deter professionals from speaking the truth in the future?
"I'm a little red flower."

[Comic] Chinese youths are like little red flowers

Comic artist Baiyi examines the idea of China's "involuted" generation of young people and their "lying flat" attitude towards life. Many Chinese youths are feeling stressed and overworked, as they feel trapped by a narrow definition of success. "Lying flat" or taking themselves out of the game seems to be a spiritual awakening of sorts to re-examine their priorities in life. How did Chinese youths arrive at such a state of being?
A boy holds up a US flag as guests attend Independence Day celebrations at the White House in Washington, DC, 4 July 2021. (Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/AFP)

Can China hold its own without the US?

Researcher Wei Da notes that China and the US have been moving on increasingly divergent paths, to the point that relations may soon be irrevocably broken. Despite China’s confidence that it can make it without the US, its strong nationalism may be all that keeps it going.
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”.
Soldiers wait for buses to return back to their base, at Liberty Square in Taipei, Taiwan, 16 May 2021. (Ann Wang/Reuters)

Taiwanese youth: Taiwan not the 'most dangerous place on earth'

People often compare Taiwan and mainland China, and even the Taiwanese knock themselves for lagging behind, especially in terms of economy and business. One frequent comment is that Taiwan is content with “small blessings”. Social entrepreneur and columnist Jack Huang disagrees, saying that the youth in Taiwan are channelling their energy into worthy causes and working hard towards building an inclusive society and a better world for everyone.