Willy’s Corner

Kim Jong-Il’s Secret Visit to Beijing

North Korean President Kim Jong-Il’s recently completed visit to Beijing, which came on the heels of South Korean President Lee Myun-bak’s trip to attend the 2010 Shanghai Expo, has testified to China’s unprecedented clout over strategic developments in the Korean Peninsula. Yet despite Dear Leader... MORE

Chinese Leaders Revive Marxist Orthodoxy

Two unusual developments in elite Chinese politics have observers wondering if the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) is moving toward political reform and changes in its policy toward ethnic minorities. On April 15, Premier Wen Jiabao published an article in the People’s Daily—the Party's mouthpiece—that heaped... MORE

China’s Ecological Woes: Drought and Water Wars?

Are there policy and administrative failures behind the unprecedentedly severe drought that is devastating China’s southwestern provinces? The same question is being asked about the unusually ferocious sandstorm that blanketed northern and eastern China last week. The country’s ecological degradation has had dire global consequences.... MORE

Powerful Interests Stifle Reforms at National People’s Congress

A major theme of the just-concluded National People’s Congress (NPC) is social and distributive justice, or the ways and means to help disadvantaged sectors such as peasants and migrant workers in China get a fairer share of the fruits of the “Chinese economic miracle.” Premier... MORE

Beijing Seeks Paradigm Shift in Geopolitics

China’s on-going tussle with the United States over issues including Taiwan, Tibet and trade is in a sense nothing new. For more than two decades, Sino-U.S. relations have periodically gone through rough patches over these and related causes of disagreement. What is new is China’s... MORE

Beijing Bones up its Cyber-Warfare Capacity

While the furor over cyber attacks against Google has lapsed somewhat, the Sino-American confrontation over the larger issue of Internet security and global digital warfare is expected to intensify in the near future. This is particularly in light of the deterioration of bilateral ties due... MORE

Hu’s “New Deal” with Tibet: Chinese Characteristics and Tibetan Traits?

The Hu Jintao administration has significantly tightened policy over Tibet in an apparent attempt to ensure the proverbial Chinese Communist Party’s “long reign and perennial stability” in the restive region. More hard-line cadres are being appointed to run the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR). While unprecedented... MORE

Major Reshuffles in China’s Military and Security Leadership

President and Commander-in-Chief Hu Jintao has reshuffled the leadership of China’s military and security forces to speed up rejuvenation and raise the efficiency and combat-readiness of the generals. The supremo also wants to ensure the officers’ loyalty to the Hu Jintao or Communist Youth League... MORE

CCP Party Apparatchiks Gaining at the Expense of Technocrats

The latest reshuffle in the provincial-party leadership has validated a seminal trend in Chinese politics: the rise of party apparatchiks and the relative decline of technocrats. Early this month, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Organization Department announced two promotions: Hebei Governor Hu Chunhua was made... MORE

Hu Jintao Unveils Major Foreign-Policy Initiative

Chinese President Hu Jintao has signaled his administration's readiness to play a bigger—and perhaps more constructive—role in global affairs through the release of a five-pronged foreign policy game plan. Cited by the official Outlook Weekly as “Hu Jintao’s Viewpoints about the Times,” this far-reaching initiative... MORE