China: Keeping the Ravers Out of the Officer Corps


May 12, 2006: China's largest search engine, Baidu, which has earned the favor of the government by enthusiastically censoring its users, now proposes to create a Chinese version of the popular Wikipedia (a user created encyclopedia). Wikipedia is blocked for Chinese users, but the Wikipedia concept is popular in China. So Baidu will use the Wiki technology to allow Chinese users to create their own politically correct Chinese Wikipedia. China recognizes free access to the Internet as a weapon that could seriously damage the Communist dictatorship that still runs China as a police state. China has been successful in keeping most of the hundred million Chinese Internet users from "harmful" foreign content. But as Chinese Internet users become more experienced, they discover how to get around the "Great Firewall of China," and many become upset with their government's efforts at mind control. Right now, this group is a pesky, and tiny, minority. But you know how that often works out.

May 10, 2006: In Taiwan, there was an explosion in a munitions storage site in the capital suburbs. Two people were killed. This revived calls move the many ammo storage sites in urban areas. Most of these sites used to be well outside the cities, but as Taiwan's economy boomed, so did the suburbs, with new housing going up around the military storage sites. Now, after half a century of fearing, and preparing for, an attack by China, most Taiwanese are less enthusiastic about supporting an expensive defense establishment, and they want the ammunition storage areas out of their neighborhoods. There are 41 of these storage areas around the capitals, each containing several hundred tons of munitions. There are occasionally accidents, which are loud and visible (because of the smoke.) This sort of thing makes people more nervous than the prospect of a Chinese invasion force.

May 8, 2006: U.S. prosecutors are throwing the book at three Chinese caught trying to smuggle out information about American warship technology (mainly stealth techniques). At first, it was thought the three would be charged with being unregistered agents (lobbyists) for China. But the navy was upset with that, and the charges will be upgraded. China has been operating a massive espionage effort in the United States for decades.

May 2, 2006: China and the United States are rebuilding military exchanges and cooperation efforts. This had been suspended after a Chinese fighter destroyed itself by hitting an American EP-3 patrol aircraft off the Chinese coast in early 2001. This means more Chinese and American officers will get to prowl around each others military bases. This is more important for the U.S. than China, because China is a police state that enforces greater security around its military installations.

April 23, 2006: China will now screen officer applicants for drugs and psychological problems. China's young people are absorbing modern life styles, meaning the music and drug use scares their elders.


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