Saturday, March 5, 2011

Beijing Daily Warns Against Middle East-Style "Unrest"

In a front-page article titled "Conscientiously Safeguard Social Harmony and Stability," the Beijing Daily became the first official media in China to formally address the possibility of a "Jasmine Revolution" there.

The Associated Press paraphrases the article in its report:
Such movements [in Middle East] has brought nothing but chaos and misery to their countries' citizens and are engineered by a small number of people using the Internet to organize illegal meetings, the Beijing Daily, published by the city's party committee, said in a front-page editorial.

"The vast majority of the people are strongly dissatisfied (with the protests), so the performance by the minority becomes a self-delusional ruckus," the newspaper said.


In its editorial, the Beijing Daily attempted to draw a sharp distinction between China and the Middle Eastern countries roiled by unrest, where disdain for long-serving autocratic rulers has frequently been fueled by high unemployment and economic woes.
In a similar news report by AFP, however, the word "turmoil" is used in its translation:
"This turmoil has brought a massive calamity to the people of these countryies," the Beijing Daily said in a commentary.
"Turmoil," or 动乱 in Chinese, became a very sensitive phrase during the 1989 student movement and was a critical point of contention between the student protesters and the government then. It has been rarely used since then.

The Beijing Daily commentary used a different phrase, 动荡, which means "unrest" or "big shake-up," for which the Associated Press has the more accurate translation.

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