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Why some Western media wage 'asymmetric warfare' on China
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17:42, April 16, 2008

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People's Daily Online Wednesday released an interview between Song Luzheng (hereinafter will be Song) and his French boss Bastien, trying to figure out why some Western media entities have long-held a biased, even hostile attitude towards China; and why a few of them showed blatant discrimination towards China and went out of their way to slander China, as seen and heard following the Lhasa Riot and on the global tour of the Beijing Olympic torch relay.

Song: What remains confusing to us Chinese, including the overseas Chinese, is why the French government, as well as the people, are so actively –overzealously – and desperately involved in attacks and clampdowns on China. Some French media carried articles and editorials with evident anti-China sentiment which can be detected by just glancing at the titles: "Olympic flame suffered a disastrous defeat in Paris," and "A slap to China." To my knowledge, the Chinese-French relationship remains sound and without any substantial conflict or confrontation. China has never done anything to offend French interests; and in particular, the two sides recently concluded a deal with a bulky order worth over 20 billion euros. Why would France opt to risk losing such a big and promising market like China?

Bastien: (pondering for a while) For human rights.

Song: Human rights? But why has the French government continuously offered aid and even sent protective troops to those African countries whose human rights records are even worse?

Bastien: You are quite right, but…

Song: Let's get down to Tibet. As a part of China's territory, Tibet takes the lead in the country for tax exemptions; and is also exempt from family planning restrictions. The per capita GDP in Tibet exceeds 10,000 yuan. Compared with parts of China's mainland, Tibet enjoys the most preferential treatment as far as human rights are concerned. Why won't the French authorities shift their attention to other matters equally as important as human rights; and why do they, instead, always pin their focus on Tibet?

Bastien: It is still different because of the Dalai Lama.

Song: When you mention the Dalai Lama, I wonder how much you know about Tibet.

Bastien: I don't know very much about it.

Song: Then how much knowledge do you have about the Lama Buddhism?

Bastien: I'm sorry, I don't know very much about it.

Song: It is unbelievable that your government can easily pick a side to join that is opposed to China, when it remains ignorant of the Dalai Lama and Tibet. The Dalai clique is a bloc mixing religion and politics. Mixing religion with politics is forbidden in Western Europe, including France; and it is considered illegal.

Bastien: I'm not quite sure about this, as nobody has told me about this.

Song : But the Dalai Lama has kept very close ties with the Aum Shinrikyo ( Supreme Truth) cult.

Bastien: That's impossible.

Song: But it's a fact. The Dalai formed a tutor-pupil relationship with the Aum cult guru, Shoko Asahara; and even worse, he accepted a 100,000-dollar offer from the Aum cult. In return, he granted the cult a certificate which gave the cult a religious status in Japan. It was because of the Dalai Lama who persistently supported and trumpeted Shoko Asahara that the Aum cult could acquire "tax exemption" privileges and accumulated funds to bankroll his cruel evil doing against the Japanese people.

Bastien: (suspiciously) Did it really happen that way?

Song: You can find it on the Internet, and you can also find a group of photos with the both of them.

Bastien (reticent)…

Song: Then do you know what the Tibetan social structure was like before 1959, when the so-called "uprising" was foiled by the central government?

Bastien: Democratic society, of course.

Song: (astonished) What? Democratic society! Come on, that was serfdom! It is incredible how you French could call it democracy.

Bastien: What?

Song: Do you know why the Chinese were irate and outraged this time? It is simply because your media fabricated news and made slanted reporting.

Bastien: (excited) Certainly impossible.

Song: The Chinese people both at home and abroad are still protesting this. RTF even fabricated a story saying the Chinese Embassy apologized to the French media.

Bastien: But was that true?

Song: It was crafted news. China's Foreign Ministry has straightened it out at the weekly press conference, stating that no such apology ever happened.

Bastien: Oh! I didn't know that.

Song: When the armed rebellion erupted in Tibet in 1959, the two brothers of the Dalai Lama were both working for the US's CIA, as the U.S then tried to cultivate Tibetan rebellious groups and airdropped them into Tibet to launch and organize the riots.

Bastien: Are you sure about this?

Song: Yes, this is history.

Bastien: As far as I know, the Dalai Lama has all along been seeking greater autonomy, not independence.

Song: But I wonder if you really know about the true nature of this "autonomy." What is behind the "autonomy" he preaches are his unspoken political ambitions: first, he attempts to smash the existing social system in Tibet, and rebuild a Tibetan society by mixing religion and politics. Second, he attempts to force the central government to pull troops out of Tibet. And third, he attempts to establish the "greater Tibet" which covers Tibet Autonomous Region and neighboring provinces which have never belonged to Tibet; and making up a quarter of China's territory. He even attempts to carry out "ethnic cleansing" by driving the Han Chinese out of Tibet. Do you really believe Tibetans would enjoy more human rights under the leadership of such a political Lama?

Bastien: Why has the Chinese side never explained this to other people?

Song: We have. The Chinese government, embassy and the overseas scholars keep informing others of the truth. Unfortunately, you are selectively blind to the facts and turn a deaf ear to the calls for justice.

Song: There is still one thing I personally can't understand: why did the French government sent such a hostile message to China this time? You must have done this for a reason, right? For instance, France strongly opposed to the U.S invasion of Iraq because of oil. More than a decade ago, the French government finished a deal with Taiwan on arms sales, which aroused great indignation from the Chinese and poisoned relations between the two countries. But we all knew, even then, it was driven by profit. But this time, for what? Who will want to deal with such an unreliable and unpredictable friend in future?

Bastien: (silent) I really didn't know about this before.

As we continued talking, I suddenly realized that Bastien is a French person with limited information and knowledge about Tibet and the Dalai Lama and fed by the media's selective or even manipulative reports. I can not help but think of a military term – asymmetric warfare – which originally refers to war between two or more players or groups whose relative military power differs significantly. But today, "asymmetric warfare" can describe a conflict in which the resources of two opposing sides differ; and during the struggle, each side interacts and attempt to exploit each other's characteristic weaknesses. Some biased foreign media is launching pseudo- asymmetric warfare on China.

By People's Daily Online

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