Toughts, news and small talk mainly concerning China from a berlin perspective

3/24/2005

Beijing scores own goal

PLA Propaganda Poster

Looks as if the Chinese anti-secession law causes European politicians to rethink the lift of the arms-embargo towards china. Strange thing is, that the majority of Chinese, leaders as well as normal people, don't seem to understand what the whole fuss is made about. A commentary in the GUANGMING RIBAO says, those European politicians are shortsighted, accuses them to treat china with bias, and talks of the arms embargo as a discrimination (link by chinablätter). Also Chinese I know found it odd, that so many of their German friends told them they think the law is a bad thing.

Well as there are a lot of reasons for the European reaction for sure, one major point (particularly for normal people) might be the two world wars, and that many Europeans and especially Germans have realized that two reasons for them were nationalism and chauvinism. So Europeans today are quite sensitive towards nationalistic tones like the ones recently aired in Beijing (but also towards those that have been aired in Washington for some time). Also the affirmation the whole thing will appease the Taiwan straights, and nobody wants to buy weapons in a large scale, is not that convincing.

The SPIEGEL wrote about the lift of the arms embargo to be the next major threat to trans-Atlantic relations some time ago. Perhaps the anti-secession law prevented a new crisis between Europe and America. Another interpretation might be, that it is just a good excuse for European leaders, preventing them from loosing face, as they already were convinced by the

Americans, the NYT points out. I anyway wondered for some time how German chancellor Schröder wanted to convince the Green party to accept the lift of the arms embargo, cause it triggers two neuralgic points in the green worldview: selling arms and human rights.

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