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vellocet

You posted a link to a website that the rest of us don't subscribe to.

 

It's hard to believe the Swedes, of all people, descending into racism and expulsion.  

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vellocet

Racism isn't about intent.  It's also about outcomes.  

 

Racism can occur without anyone having to be a racist - or without someone being actively prejudiced against a person of color.

 

Racism is anything whose consequence is harm to minorities or promotion of white supremacy, regardless of whether or not this is intentional.
 

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Shelley

Surely its just a case of no students at the moment so all staff sent home, premises shut down and CI closes in Sweden.

No racism, just economics and coronavirus.

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StChris

I don't think China's new "wolf warrior diplomacy" is helping here:

Quote

 

Traditionally, chinese ambassadors are restrained, colourless figures who emerge from the wallpaper only to object ritually that any criticism of their government is an insult to Chinese people. Gui Congyou, China’s ambassador to Sweden, has taken a different tack. He and his embassy denounce journalists and public figures for perceived slights on an almost weekly basis, a pace so unusual it has been studied by Swedish political scientists. He has been summoned to Sweden’s foreign ministry more than 40 times in two years.

But Mr Gui has only grown more outspoken. Interviewed on Swedish public radio in November, he sounded like a gangster: “We treat our friends with fine wine, but for our enemies we have shotguns.” Mr Gui offers a glimpse of a newly forceful brand of Chinese diplomacy (see article). The regime is quicker to take offence, and retaliates more harshly.

 

 

https://www.economist.com/europe/2020/02/20/how-sweden-copes-with-chinese-bullying

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15 hours ago, StChris said:

wolf warrior diplomacy

I was going to post about this as well.  

 

It supports articles like a recent one in SCMP that suggest China's "wolf-warrior diplomacy" may cause the country problems:  https://www.scmp.com/news/china/diplomacy/article/3080485/it-will-come-back-haunt-us-inside-warnings-against-chinas-wolf

The article mentions that China is even having small conflicts with traditional allies like Iran.  

 

China's hypersensitivity to criticism will likely foster further conflicts.  As you likely know, "Italy" has also greatly upset China because of a bottega spa owner's letter to a newspaper about China needing to pay the costs of the virus.  "Spain" gravely insulted China because one of its fashion companies (Zara) used a freckled Chinese model (and this was portrayed as an insult to all of China).  And there have been countless examples with US, British & German press.  I put the countries in "quotes," because these issues were obviously done by an individual or a company (i.e., a spa owner doesn't represent all of Italy),  but China assumes any & all press against China must be censored.  It's is showing it's intolerant of free press anywhere in the world.    

 

The spa owner & freckled model are most instructive because they are so insignificant.  Can anyone who posts to this blog imagine being insulted because another country choose a model from your country whose appearance you don't like?  (those evil freckles???)  Or because of "bad" letters to the editor.  As an American, I'm used to the fact that negative press about the US appears in foreign press everyday - during good times & bad (well before Trump). 

 

When I lived in England, I found almost every night's evening news highlighted something bad about the US (and we're close allies).  I recently read a biography of Winston Churchill during WWII.  The book constantly criticized the actions of the US during the war.  While I thought that the criticism was often off-based, I still liked the book & would recommend it to others.  As a Chinese friend who is living in the US said, if you are hypersensitive about criticism of your power, you're not very powerful.  The hypersensitivity and desire to control & censor foreign press will only further foster actions like the shutting of Confucius institutes.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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edelweis
20 minutes ago, Dawei3 said:

actions like the shutting of Confucius institutes.

(I'm not sure what happened in Sweden)

 

My impression from reading about Confucius Institutes closures in France is that Hanban establishes those institutes on foreign universities premises, in cooperation with those universities.

So the foreign party does not directly "close" the Confucius Institute.

The foreign party merely revokes the previous agreement which allowed Hanban to use their resources (buildings and easy access to local university students).

(Apparently an organisation backed by the government of the most populous country on Earth can be quite inflexible when dealing with smaller countries universities.)

 

Hanban could easily open their Confucius Institutes as independent schools, provided that they follow local laws. But apparently they are not interested in doing so.

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Sister-city relationships are also being ended.

 

"Gothenburg is among many other Swedish cities that have axed their twin-city relationships with China in recent months. Linkoping severed ties with China’s Guangdong, as did Lulea and Xi’an, Vasteras with Jinan, along with Dalarna and Wuhan."

 

Gothenburg axes twin city agreement with Shanghai as Sweden closes all Confucius Institutes

 

The GAO published a fairly thorough study on the status of CIs in the U.S. last year.

 

https://www.gao.gov/assets/700/696859.pdf

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杰.克
On 4/23/2020 at 1:10 AM, 889 said:

Set your definition expansively enough and you can impugn others with abandon.

 

Funny you should pick Vellocet up on this

 

On 3/21/2020 at 3:23 PM, vellocet said:

You're openly advocating for fascism.  That's fascist.  100%.

 

Perhaps he can be a bit quick to the trigger ...

 

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Please use this thread to discuss the CI closing in Sweden and any related information. If it veers any step further into name-calling and such, I will close it. Vellocet already has a short-term ban for his behavior yesterday in this thread and another one.

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20 hours ago, edelweis said:

I'm not sure what happened in Sweden

 

For those who don't have time to read the link 889 posted, there are some key quotes: 

"Linköping mayor Lars Vikinge told Swedish newspaper Dagens Samhalle in February that they were breaking all political contact with China: “This is due to the threats that the Chinese embassy has directed towards the Swedish government.”

"Gui Congyou, Beijing’s ambassador to Sweden since August 2017, has also expressed strong criticism of Swedish media on multiple occasions.  Last November, the ambassador told Radio Sweden: “We treat our friends with fine wine, but for our enemies we have shotguns,” 

“Public opinion of China has become a lot more negative in Sweden… This is quite significant, since Sweden used to be one of the most active countries in Europe in terms of the number of these agreements.”

 

This all suggests the the closure of the institutes is linked to China's "wolf-warrior" diplomacy.  (Can you imagine the hubbub if any Western country diplomat indirectly suggested they would use a shotgun on China?) 

 

As an American, I can understand how our President & Press agitates China (Trump annoys me too!).  However, seeing that China is threatening even neutral countries in Europe suggests to me things have changed a lot.  In addition, whereas some US politicians (and media) go off half-cocked, messages from China extremely tightly controlled.  When the Chinese embassy threatens Sweden, they are doing so with concurrence from the central government.   

 

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imron
4 hours ago, Dawei3 said:

Can you imagine the hubbub if any Western country diplomat indirectly suggested they would use a shotgun on China?

It would hurt all of our feelings.

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mungouk

This isn't just a diplomatic "spat" is it... there are people being jailed/prosecuted on both sides in Sweden and Canada (also closing their CIs?) which has surely led to this low point in relations.

 

Hong Kong bookseller Gui Minhai jailed for 10 years in China
Swedish citizen who went missing in 2015 sentenced for ‘providing intelligence’ abroad

 

Two Canadians held for a year by China remain 'resilient'

 

Extradition Hearings Begin for Meng Wanzhou, Huawei Officer Held in Canada

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杰.克
5 hours ago, Dawei3 said:

Can you imagine the hubbub if any Western country diplomat indirectly suggested they would use a shotgun on China?

 

I'd imagine you could probably find some examples. Especially in the times of Trump 

 

5 hours ago, Dawei3 said:

In addition, whereas some US politicians (and media) go off half-cocked, messages from China extremely tightly controlled.  When the Chinese embassy threatens Sweden, they are doing so with concurrence from the central government.   

 

Personally i don't think you are giving enough agency to individuals here. The idea that central government has dictated to a diplomat he should reference a shotgun in his messaging is unlikely imo. I know its China, and they are more collectivist and centralised than us. But much more likely is, there is a strategic push for diplomats to be more aggressive overall. And he has decided the use this termonoloy (which yes is in line with what he will being pushed to do). But no way someone has someone specifically giving him instructions to reference a shotgun (or any weaponry for that matter).

 

 

 

Come on now. What would that email look like?

 

Please make sure to make more references to weaponry, particularly shotguns, Yours sincerely MFA bosses

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Zbigniew

 

On 4/22/2020 at 11:07 AM, Flickserve said:

 

According to this article, CI no longer exists in Sweden 

 

Just for the record, Confucius Institutes in Sweden were all closed by December 2019.

The recent closure was of the last state-backed Confucius classroom.

An earlier version of the HKFP article has been updated.

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On 4/24/2020 at 5:37 PM, 杰.克 said:

Personally i don't think you are giving enough agency to individuals here. The idea that central government has dictated to a diplomat he should reference a shotgun in his messaging is unlikely imo. I know its China, and they are more collectivist and centralised than us. But much more likely is, there is a strategic push for diplomats to be more aggressive overall.

Using highly scripted speeches is common both inside & outside China.    

 

In 2017, Zhibo Qiu noted that while China has people with international "talent and charm", it's not who China's foreign service uses.  Zhibo wrote:  "At meetings with counterparties, Chinese diplomats often go directly to their seats, only talking to each other, with no interaction or greetings with delegates from other countries. They are usually silent, except on those occasions when they read China’s position aloud from prepared scripts."  "By training and disposition, interpreters closely follow other people’s scripts, and are punished, not rewarded, for thinking beyond that."  https://foreignpolicy.com/2017/01/23/reboot-chinas-foreign-service-for-the-age-of-trump/

 

It's not just international diplomats who are punished for going off script.  One of my first experiences, at the university in China where I teach, was when a senior level individual from China's Food & Drug Administration gave a talk.  The whole time, he had his head down and he read from a script.  I asked a student about this and she said "He's worried he'll say something wrong so he has to use a script.  That's how it is done." (his talk was in Chinese).  And this was >10 years ago.      

 

Hence, the diplomat could have been ad-libing when he said "shot-gun", but he would have done so knowing he could face serious consequences for thinking on his own.    

 

 

 

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Flickserve
15 hours ago, 杰.克 said:

Edit- In hindsight I'm gonna step away from this convo and do some Chinese study!


I didn’t realise this would open up a can of worms. I need to refrain from posting so much

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