China: August 10, 2001


China continues to arrest Chinese scholars who are currently residents of the United States. The visiting scholars are accused to espionage for Taiwan. Apparently, these arrests are not at the orders of the government, but rather an attempt by the security forces to improve their reputation. As with most countries, no politician wants to accuse the security forces of being over zealous. In the last year, the security services have been embarrassed by leaks and defections. But in China, the situation is worse. China is poor, and the major government departments and provincial governments have long been expected to raise money to pay for their operations. This is actually an ancient tradition. Indeed, it's only in the last century that the military became centralized. Before that, provincial governors were expected to raise troops to deal with local emergencies. If that didn't do it, the central government would solicit the other provinces to raise troops for the emergency. This often led to civil wars were local warlords defied the central government. The tradition of ignoring the central government lives on. It is traditional and no one sees it as unusual, or even a bad thing. The army, like other parts of the government, has to be treated like an organization that could go its own way under the right conditions. The Chinese communists tried to centralize government control, but were never able to pull it off. Thus the danger of regional independence and civil war remain a constant threat.


Article Archive

China: Current 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close