Today’s issue is a bit of a quick and dirty catchup after the CNY holiday. I am traveling back to Beijing this week and the newsletter will not return to a normal schedule until next week.
The big news this morning is the rollout (see below in the Essential Eight) of the “Four Comprehensives 四个全面”, a formulation which sounds like it may end up as Xi’s contribution to the theoretical canon on a par with Jiang’s “Three Represents” and Hu’s “Scientific Outlook on Development”. Expect to hear much more about this concept in the coming days and years.
THE ESSENTIAL EIGHT
1. 人民日报首次权威定义习近平“四个全面”–时政–人民网 Big propaganda rollout for the “four comprehensives”–Comprehensively building a moderately prosperous society, comprehensively deepening reform, comprehensively governing the nation according to law, comprehensively strictly governing the party. So is the “Four Comprehensives” Xi’s signature theoretical contribution on a par with the Three Represents and Scientific Development? The article says that Xi’s moves in his 1st month in office were initial, planned steps in rolling out the four comprehensives… // “四个全面”——全面建成小康社会、全面深化改革、全面依法治国、全面从严治党，从去年12月在江苏调研时第一次提出后，在全国政协新年茶话会上、在党校省部级主要领导干部专题研讨班上、在中央政治局会议和集体学习中、在春节团拜会上……习近平一而再、再而三地不断强调，让“四个全面”成为备受关注的“新提法”。党报此时推出系列评论员文章，正是为了全面梳理、总结这一重要新概念，更深刻地认识“四个全面”背后的“简约不简单”…回头看，治国理政的壶奥，在最初就已经呈现。这篇评论起笔，就罗列了十八大之后一个月中，习近平四次引人关注的活动——参观《复兴之路》展览、到广东考察工作、纪念“八二宪法”颁行、制定“八项规定”。这四次活动，无疑正对应着“四个全面”。可见，运筹帷幄，从履新之际就已开始。
Related: 人民日报评论员：引领民族复兴的战略布局–观点–人民网 page 1 People’s Daily on the four comprehensives “leading the way for strategic arrangement for national renewal” // 这是一个崭新的起点。2012年11月，以习近平同志为总书记的党中央接过历史的接力棒，在新中国成立以来党和人民接续奋斗的基础上，继续在中国特色社会主义道路上谋划民族复兴的伟大事业，续写这无上的光荣。国家博物馆，《复兴之路》展览中思接千载，追寻中国梦。深圳莲花山，邓小平铜像前再展宏图，激荡改革潮。纪念“八二宪法”颁行，重申依宪治国、依法执政，塑造法治魂。力行八项规定，以上率下言出必果，坚守生命线……履新第一个月，起笔落墨之际，前进航标已然确立。两年多来，从党的十八大强调“全面建成小康社会”，到党的十八届三中全会部署“全面深化改革”，再到党的十八届四中全会要求“全面依法治国”、党的群众路线教育实践活动总结大会宣示“全面从严治党”，“四个全面”战略布局清晰展现。
2. Traffic peaks as Lunar New Year holiday ends – Xinhua Traffic authorities estimated that about 9.7 million trips were made by train and some 1.4 million by plane on Tuesday, setting new records. Another 73.6 million trips were made by highway. Altogether, Chinese passengers made 8.25 million trips by air during the week-long holiday, up 7.3 percent year on year, according to the Civil Aviation Administration of China.
Related: 39 Hours Inside The Biggest Human Migration On Earth fun story by Matt Sheehan // Seating stakes are highest on long-haul routes, and the T177 is about as long as they come. This hulking vehicle will take 39 hours and 25 minutes to traverse the 1,998 miles from Beijing to Urumqi in northwest Xinjiang Province.
Related: Travelers shell out worldwide – Xinhua More than 5 million Chinese expected to have traveled overseas for shopping in the past week. Spring Festival appears to be no longer a time solely for family reunions in China. More wealthy Chinese are traveling abroad, with shopping one of their most important missions during the weeklong holiday. From Japanese electronic toilet seats to Swiss luxury watches, Chinese tourists have been globe-trotting in pursuit of purchases in department stores and luxury shops. // yes, apparently there was a run on the toilet seats…and all 5 million got a chance to experience an unfettered internet too…
3. China’s Most Outspoken Real Estate Mogul Just Made Some New Enemies | Foreign Policy very interesting given Ren’s connections to the apex of power in Beijing // Seemingly conscious of how controversial his remarks might become, he took to his Weibo account later on Feb. 14, posting a full-length article in which he justified his criticism of the CCP’s campaign to vilify “Western values” and its recent move to eliminate the teaching of such values from college classrooms. Chinese state-run media moved quickly to counter Ren’s claims, casting his criticisms as bordering on a call for regime change.
Related: 任志强：什么是西方价值观？_网易财经 Ren’s comments still not deleted…perhaps even more interesting
4. In China’s Modern Economy, a Retro Push Against Women – NYTimes.com According to corporate records examined by The New York Times, fewer than 1 in 10 board members of China’s top 300 companies are women. That measure, significantly smaller than the proportion of women on corporate boards in the United States and much of Europe, is based on a review of the boards of directors of every company in the CSI 300 index, China’s equivalent to the S.&P. 500, which includes a wide swath of the economy from mining to pharmaceuticals. // but still 3x better than Japan
Related: For richer, for poorer: how China’s laws put women second | The Guardian Marriage and divorce, land and property, at work and at home – laws and customs discriminate against women and leave them at a glaring economic disadvantage
5. Q. and A.: Barnett Rubin on China’s Role in Afghanistan – NYTimes.com At the center of promoting United States-China dialogue on Afghanistan is Barnett Rubin, a veteran Afghanistan scholar who served for four and a half years as a senior adviser to the American government’s special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan. He was hired for that position in 2009 by Richard C. Holbrooke, the first special envoy, and worked with two of Mr. Holbrooke’s successors after his death in 2010. Since the summer of 2012, Mr. Rubin, who is also part of the Center on International Cooperation at New York University, has helped to organize seven meetings on Afghanistan that make up a “track two” dialogue between American and Chinese parties.
Related: Afghan reconciliation: Senior Taliban negotiator visits Pakistan – The Express Tribune “Now we have a better understanding and contacts with China on many issues. We trust China more than any other country as Chinese leaders sincerely want an end to the war in Afghanistan,” said another Taliban official, who requested anonymity as the Taliban do not want to comment on-the-record until things mature.
Related: Kabul arrests, hands over Chinese Uighurs to aid Taliban dialogue bid–Daily Times Pakistan Senior Afghan intelligence officials say they offered their hand in cooperation with China and in return asked them to pressure Pakistan to stop supporting Taliban
6. Making Plans: Steps in Development of China’s Crucial 13th Five Year Plan | ChinaFAQs ChinaFAQs expert Angel Hsu and her team at Yale’s Environmental Performance Measurement program have developed an interactive timeline that lays out the steps China is expected to take in developing, enacting and implementing its next Five Year Plan, which will orient the country’s economic and social policy. The 13th Five Year Plan will be announced in early 2016 and will be in place until the 14th Five Year Plan in 2021. The timeline provides details on dates, procedure, and stakeholder involvement for each stage of the process. Past plans have set targets relating to energy and carbon intensity, coal and energy consumption, energy efficiency, and clean energy development. The upcoming 13th Five Year Plan is likely to include additional measures to bend the curve of China’s greenhouse gas emissions downward, and will provide insight into how China will strive to meet its new climate targets for 2030.
7. Debt and (not much) deleveraging | McKinsey & Company China’s debt has quadrupled since 2007. Fueled by real estate and shadow banking, China’s total debt has nearly quadrupled, rising to $28 trillion by mid-2014, from $7 trillion in 2007. At 282 percent of GDP, China’s debt as a share of GDP, while manageable, is larger than that of the United States or Germany. Three developments are potentially worrisome: half of all loans are linked, directly or indirectly, to China’s overheated real-estate market; unregulated shadow banking accounts for nearly half of new lending; and the debt of many local governments is probably unsustainable. However, MGI calculates that China’s government has the capacity to bail out the financial sector should a property-related debt crisis develop. The challenge will be to contain future debt increases and reduce the risks of such a crisis, without putting the brakes on economic growth.
8. Japanese crown prince says country must not rewrite history of WW2 | World news | The Guardian In an unusual intervention in the discussion, Naruhito’s mild-mannered broadside was being interpreted in some circles as a rebuke to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, a key figure in the right wing drive to minimise the institutionalised system of wartime sex slavery. “Today when memories of war are set to fade, I reckon it is important to look back (at) our past with modesty and pass down correctly the miserable experience and the historic path Japan took from the generation who know the war to the generation who don’t,” Naruhito said.
BUSINESS, ECONOMY AND TRADE
HSBC flash China PMI hits 4-month high | Business Spectator The HSBC China Manufacturing PMI improved slightly to 50.1 in the flash reading for February, up from 49.7 in January. A reading above 50 on the survey points to expansion, while a reading below 50 indicates contraction. Analysts had expected the figures to show a slowing in February from a month prior to 49.5.
Fretting About the Yuan – WSJ Review & Outlook Beijing again deserves credit for keeping its currency steady.
Chinese steel industry shows no signs of slowing | Business Spectator In the last 10 days of January, crude steel inventories at China’s major steel mills increased by 1.27 per cent to almost 2.2 million tonnes when compared to the previous 10 day period, according to the most recent data from the China Iron and Steel Association (CISA).
China’s catering sector picks up after austerity adjustment – Xinhua Growth of China’s catering sector picked up in 2014 after an adjustment prompted by the country’s austerity drive. Revenue of China’s catering sector totaled 2.786 trillion yuan (about 445.5 billion U.S. dollars) in 2014, up 9.7 percent from 2013, according to the latest data released by the China Cuisine Association (CCA). Jiang Junxian, head of the CCA, expects the growth rate of the catering sector to jump to double-digit figures and for total revenue to reach about three trillion yuan in 2015.
POLITICS AND LAW
China vows to step up bribery blacklist – Xinhua The SPP also plans to improve the bribery database to support batch queries and online reservations for inquiries in a bid to make public inquiries more convenient, Song said. Launched in February 2012, the database makes names of convicted bribers available across the country for public inquiry. Anyone discovered to be on the list will likely be disqualified for bidding on government projects and companies may even be forbidden from operating.
中央反腐用狠词 或打更大老虎青岛频道凤凰网 bigger tigers ahead?
中纪委驻教育部纪检组负责人：教育系统反腐倡廉要抓招生基建采购等重点领域-新闻中心频道-新华网 sounds like there will be increased focus on corruption in education sector//新华网北京２月２３日电 中央纪委驻教育部纪检组副组长、监察局局长徐开濯近日在接受中央纪委监察部网站访谈时表示，教育系统党风廉政建设，要抓住招生、基本建设、物资采购和校办企业等重点领域，以及一些影响恶劣的师德师风问题。 徐开濯表示，教育系统党风廉政建设和反腐败工作责任重大，全社会关注。要抓住重点领域，紧扣监督执纪问责这个基本职能不放松，紧扣领导机关、领导干部、领导班子成员这些重点，一级一级往下抓。
China’s Anti-Corruption Effort Faces Headwinds, Agency Says – China Real Time Report – WSJ “Some call on an end to the combat against graft and work style revamp, fearing the campaign would go too far if it continues,” the report ran, according to a Xinhua news agency translation posted on Monday to the website of the Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, the Communist Party’s internal watchdog. “Such arguments must be vehemently objected,” said the article. The commission said separately that in January it punished 1650 people for violations, more than a third of them for misusing official vehicles.
Zhou Yongkang’s case alerts CPC to hidden “tigers”: graft watchdog – Xinhua According to the commentary quoted by the CPC Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI), these hidden tigers (high-ranking officials) tend to form cliques and factions, seeking not only money but also political conspiracy, gravely threatening the Party leadership and solidarity. “The tigers we aim at nowadays are deceitful, and tend to lay low,” the article went on, warning that corrupt officials find their ways to survive the sweeping anti-graft campaign. The commentary argued that the fight against corruption must be carried on, in light of the daunting challenges, refuting opinions that “the anti-graft campaign is just a gust of wind.”
国管局:推动审计监督全覆盖 守住资金安全”底线”————要闻——中央纪委监察部网站 2月中旬，国管局召开2015年党风廉政建设工作会议，总结2014年党风廉政建设工作，部署2015年工作任务。国务院副秘书长兼国管局局长、党组书记焦焕成对抓好党风廉政建设和反腐败工作提出要求。
Fei Chang Dao: Nine Lawyers File FOIA Request Demanding Legal Basis for Banning the Spread of Western Value Systems in China’s Universities On February 10, 2015, copies of a Freedom of Information Application began appearing online under the title “By Its Nature Learning Should Be Open, To Seal Up Schools and Shut Up the Country is to Endanger the Nation” (学术天然应开放 封校锁国必误国). The Application, dated February 6, was addressed to the Ministry of Education and was signed by nine Chinese lawyers from Beijing, Hubei, Chongqing, Guizhou, and Yunnan: Yang Mingkua (杨名跨), Liu Wenhua (刘文华), Xu Silong (许思龙), Fu Wei (付薇), You Feizhu (游飞翥), Li Guisheng (李贵生), Zhou Lixin (周立新), Zhao Qing (赵庆), and Huang Simin (黄思敏).
Fei Chang Dao: Global Times: Websites Twisted Nankai Dean’s Statement About People Today Having a Cultural Revolution Mentality Gong Ke’s speech was selectively reported, and the aforementioned content was only a portion of what he said. This report was reposted by certain commercial websites with a modified headline and placed in prominent positions, causing it to take no a meaning beyond its original content. Taken as a whole, what Gong Ke said is defensible and stands up to analysis. But singling out those specific statements from the entirety of what was said at the seminar that day, and putting on a headline like the one mentioned above, is the kind of “montaging” that one commonly sees online these days. When people draw connections between the strengthening of university ideology propaganda work, Yuan Guiren’s statements about implementing this project that certain people have attacked, and some people declaring “the anti-rightists have returned,” it creates a particularly forceful impact.
从在宁德严查干部私房看习近平治国理念–时政–人民网 据人民日报1990年5月21日通讯《办好一件事，赢得万人心》披露：全区有7392名干部营建私房，其中副县级以上的干部达242人，科级以上的干部1399人，分别占这两级干部总数的49％和46％。“这是一组与贫困地区形成强烈反差令人触目惊心的数字！” 习近平在地委工作会议的讲话掷地有声：“这里有一个谁得罪谁的问题，你违纪违法占地盖房，为一己之私破坏了党的权威和形象，是你得罪了党，得罪了人民，得罪了党纪国法，而不是代表了党和人民利益查处你的干部得罪了你。”//interesting comments from Xi in 1990, and interesting getting play now
习近平破守江山遗咒 红色权贵难成威胁_中国-多维新闻网 值得注意的是，目前活跃于政商界的红色后代们也只是其中一少部分人，并不能代表平常人居多的整个红色群体。更何况其中也不乏有能力者者存在，如习仲勋之子习近平、姚依林女婿王岐山。作为红色后代，经历过正统的革命理想熏陶和自我认同，他们对对国家复兴的强烈情感、治国理政的强势作风、对不同声音的高压态势，或许也与其红后身份和特有经历有关。其中，习王扳倒周永康、徐才厚，刘源扳倒谷俊山相关的信息报道更是一直在舆论中回响不息。红色后代群体亦因之获益，形象有了加分。另外，习近平提出和强调的“推进国家治理体系和治理能力现代化”也会大力消减外界对“‘红色权贵后代‘占据半壁江山”的恐惧，因为这个现代化的含义十分明确，不仅是国家机构、官员素质的现代化，也是执政党的现代化。“第五个现代化”回答了坚持改革总目标必须解决好制度模式选择、价值体系建设等重大问题，可以预知推行“第五个现代化”将真正使中国走出以往人治的阴影，使治理国家变得文明规范。
FOREIGN AND DEFENSE AFFAIRS
China’s Beidou gets infrastructure boost on Qinghai-Tibet plateau – Xinhua Precision service infrastructure for China’s Beidou satellite navigation system will be built on the Qinghai-Tibet Plateau as part of efforts to create a nationwide base station network for high precision navigation and positioning by 2018. The infrastructure will be built in Qinghai’s Xining, the provincial capital, and Haidong City, said an official with the First Institute of Surveying and Mapping of Qinghai on Monday.
China completes fishery survey in South China Sea – Xinhua China has completed a survey of fishery resources in the middle and southern regions of the South China Sea after two years of research, said a Chinese expert on Monday. The survey showed the area around the Nansha Islands has fishery reserves of about 1.8 million tonnes, with about half a million tonnes available for fishing, said Yang Beisheng, deputy head of the South China Sea Fisheries Research Institute under the Chinese Academy of Fishery Sciences.
军队人事调整 军官不敢回家过年怕“被遗忘”新闻腾讯网 在这份承诺书中，不仅有旅党委对干部及其家人的亲切问候，更有新年度干部调整使用的方法步骤、相关程序，而且还明确了休假干部归队不得给领导捎带土特产、不得以拜年为名到领导家串门等硬性规定。 记者了解到，这份承诺书不仅贴在了旅机关门前的公示栏里，晒到了旅局域网上，还分别寄给了目前正在老家休假的干部手中。除此之外，该旅还把符合调职条件干部的年度军事等级考核成绩予以公示，干部部门开设专线电话和信箱，方便官兵提出意见，进行监督。该旅政委高大光说：“我们就是要通过这些举措，彰显党委公开公正公平选拔任用干部的决心，确保官兵吃上‘定心丸’，休个安心假。”
Seeking China-U.S. Strategic Nuclear Stability – Federation Of American Scientists “To destroy the other, you have to destroy part of yourself. To deter the other, you have to deter yourself,” according to a Chinese nuclear strategy expert. During the week of February 9th, I had the privilege to travel to China where I heard this statement during the Ninth China-U.S. Dialogue on Strategic Nuclear Dynamics in Beijing. The Dialogue was jointly convened by the China Foundation for International Strategic Studies (CFISS) and the Pacific Forum Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). While the statements by participants were not-for-attribution, I can state that the person quoted is a senior official with extensive experience in China’s strategic nuclear planning.
Stephen Hadley and Paul Haenle | The Catch-22 in U.S.-Chinese Relations | Foreign Affairs In his new formulation, Xi’s second point called on both countries to “respect each other’s sovereign and territorial integrity.” Further down, in the fourth point, supposedly to signify a lower priority, Xi proposed that the countries “do not act against each other’s core interests.” Although these revisions are significant insofar as they demonstrate a Chinese recognition of U.S. concerns and a willingness to make adjustments to see the new type of major-power relations concept realized, they are not adequate from a U.S. perspective. The core interests clause will remain a sticking point until the language is removed or clarified completely. Privately, Chinese experts have noted that the loaded “core interests” term is seen as a blank check in Washington and that consideration of it is, therefore, politically toxic. Any issue deemed to be a core interest of China will be inherently difficult to resolve and will require careful management over time. Focusing on these sensitive areas as the starting point for a new type of relationship could endanger the progress made by both countries in the 35 years since the establishment of formal diplomatic relations
China’s Vision for Modernizing the UN | The Diplomat Upon taking over the presidency, China presented a concept paper for a debate that would focus on reconfirming each state’s commitment to the U.N. Charter. The discussion was also intended as a way to kick off the commemoration of the U.N.’s 70th anniversary and “the victory won in the war against fascism.” Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi chaired the debate, which took place Monday. Wang’s statements at the debate emphasized China’s view for how the U.N. should function – an important point, as China is determined to revamp international institutions to be more reflective of the 21st century (which, in part, would involve more influence for China and other developing powers). In accordance with that vision, Wang called for adding “new dimensions” to the U.N. Charter to “bring to it new dynamism and vitality.”
UN Live United Nations Web TV – SC President, H.E. Mr. Wang Yi (China), on the United Nations Charter – Security Council Media Stakeout (23 February 2015) 23 Feb 2015 – Informal comments to the media by H.E. Mr. Wang Yi, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China and President of the Security Council for February 2015.
AsiaEye – Official Blog of the Project 2049 Institute: A Peculiar Panic: Russia’s S-400 SAM Sale to China An excellent Defense News report came out late last year with word that Russia might soon sell its advanced S-400 surface to air missile (SAM) system to China. This has understandably caused something of a panic in Taiwan security circles. Yet the threat may not be as dire as forecast. And, if nothing else, the sale raises a number of interesting questions about the logic of Moscow’s thinking.
Ballistic Missile Defense and Strategic Stability in East Asia Remarks Frank A. Rose Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Arms Control, Verification and Compliance Federation of American Scientists Washington, DC February 20, 2015
A Shaky Case for Chinese Deception-Peter Mattis The latest contribution to the debate, The Hundred-Year Marathon: China’s Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower, will no doubt be controversial because of its vague evidence to support the author’s statement about hostile Chinese intentions and how Beijing has been able to hide its revisionism. Despite the author’s intent to sound a clarion call to American readers that cuts through Chinese deception, the book undermines its purpose through sloppy use of evidence and inadequate policy prescriptions to the challenge the author purports to identify.
China’s Submarine Hunting Plane Has A Giant Stinger | Popular Science China is making serious efforts to correct its longstanding deficiency in aerial Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), introducing the Shaanxi Y-8Q (also designated as the Y-8GX6) aircraft painted in the blue-gray People’s Liberation Army Navy Air Force (PLANAF) colors into operation. Previously, two Y-8Q prototypes had been flying for the past several years as part of a rigorous testing and training regimen. Until this month, China’s only long-range aerial ASW capability came from three Harbin SH-5 seaplanes, which are nearly thirty years old.
Ten Reasons Why China Will Have Trouble Fighting a Modern War The introduction of new weapons and platforms into the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) has captured the attention of much of the world for well over a decade. However, new equipment is only one element of the PLA’s long-term, multi-dimensional modernization process. There is much to be done and no one understands this better than the Chinese themselves. Based on what PLA commanders and staff officers write in their internal newspapers and journals, the force faces a multitude of challenges in order to close the perceived gaps between its capabilities and those of advanced militaries.
Chinese, Oceanian scholars discuss China’s regional role in Pacific – Xinhua Scholars and officials from China and Oceania gathered in the Samoan capital of Apia on Wednesday, participating in a symposium to discuss China’s evolving role in the Pacific region. Co-organized by the Center for Oceania Studies at China’s Sun Yat-sen University, the National University of Samoa and New Zealand Contemporary China Research Center at Victoria University of Wellington, the three-day conference, themed “China and the Pacific: The view from Oceania,” is expected to take a multidisciplinary approach to examining Pacific islands perspectives on China’s evolving relations with countries in the region, primarily Polynesia and Melanesia.
HONG KONG, MACAO AND TAIWAN
Hong Kong delegates to China’s parliament seek mainland security laws to counter protests | Reuters The last time Hong Kong tried to pass national security legislation was in 2003 when half a million people took to the streets, a key lawmaker withdrew his support and the government was forced to withdraw its proposal. Stanley Ng, chairman of the pro-Beijing Federation of Trade Unions, said his proposal was triggered by the so-called “Occupy Central” protests, Hong Kong’s failure to pass its own national security laws and its lack of laws addressing foreign intervention and secession.
HK seeks to tighten visit scheme for Chinese mainlanders: chief executive – Xinhua peaking ahead of an Executive Council meeting this morning, Leung said the overall number of mainland tourists visiting Hong Kong during the Lunar New Year was similar to last year, but the number of those came under the visit scheme dropped. Despite the drop, the government will discuss with the mainland authorities measures to tighten arrangements under the scheme, Leung said, adding he understood that mainland tourism growth had placed pressure on local people’s livelihoods. He said that contrary to newspaper reports, the scheme was not being extended to more mainland cities, and that he had been advising the central government not to expand the scheme as Hong Kong’s capacity to receive tourists is limited.
From China, Love and Hate for Common’s Oscar Speech | Foreign Policy The recording artist’s nod to Hong Kong protesters set off a social-media flame war.
‘Don’t touch the fruits’: Hong Kong fruit vendor’s signs warn mainlanders to back off: Shanghaiist not constructive // “99.9 percent of mainland people like to poke the fruits whether they’re buying or not. And they accuse me of duping them for selling five pieces for HK$15 and say other stalls are selling at HK$10 for five. They’re such a nuisance,” the vendor said. He added that he’s going to keep making the signs and refusing service to mainlanders because he continues to received complaints about their rude behavior.
TECH AND MEDIA
Tech speeds holiday cash gifts- China.org.cn As long as audience members shook their smartphones during the show, they stood a good chance of receiving WeChat red envelopes with cash gifts. WeChat said it received 11 billion shakes during the show. The peak was reached at 10:34 pm, with WeChat reporting 810 million shakes a minute and 120 million red envelopes being sent out. Smartphone users were also busy sending red envelopes to family members and friends included on their WeChat contacts list. According to WeChat, more than 1 billion red envelopes were sent out on Lunar New Year’s Eve, 200 times the amount sent last year.
SOCIETY, ART, SPORTS, CULTURE AND HISTORY
Mighty rams or timid lambs: Children of Year of Sheep – Xinhua Chinese obstetricians always expect a lighter workload during the Year of Sheep, which began on Feb. 19 this lunar year. “Not many people want to give birth in the Year of Sheep,” said Duan Tao, director of the Shanghai First Maternity and Infant Hospital. He has already seen a fall in deliveries. “In January, 2,330 women gave birth at my hospital, about 200 fewer than in December, and the number is still dropping.”
Watch: Dazzling Poor Man’s Fireworks in a Chinese Steel City – China Real Time Report – WSJ The steel industry in China’s rustbelt province of Hebei, which surrounds Beijing, is sooner associated with choking smog than with beauty. But over 500 years ago, it produced a unique art form that still dazzles today. Poor blacksmiths in the town of Nuanquan, in Hebei’s Yu county, found that if they hurled molten iron at the old city wall, it exploded in a shower of sparks in the cold night air. They donned sheepskins and straw hats to protect themselves, and used spoons made of hard willow wood to hurl the iron.
林迈可：一个人的抗战史藏界人物新浪收藏_新浪网 interesting show in China of Michael Lindsay’s WWII photographs
Tiananmen Square ‘Negatives’: An Art Book or a Protest? – NYTimes.com The latest book by the photographer Xu Yong is filled with the images of young Chinese idealists clamoring for democracy and denouncing the Communist Party, but he insists that there is nothing political about his decision to publish this trove of snapshots he had kept hidden for more than two decades.
Stephon Marbury is now a settled superstar in China – CBS News “People ask me about China all the time,” Marbury said. “You gotta come to China to see for yourself. Me telling you this, you’re not going to believe me.” He’s tattooed “I love China” to his arm. Among his fans, the feeling is mutual. The exchange is pretty simple, Marbury said, adding: “It’s easy to love people who love you.”
ENERGY, ENVIRONMENT, SCIENCE AND HEALTH
China’s Air Pollution: The Tipping Point | ChinaFile- Michael Zhao For the past eight years in Beijing, and four years in other Chinese cities, I have recorded an impression of the daily air quality by taking photographs from fixed points.
JOBS AND EVENTS
Work for CET | CET Academic Programs | CET Academic Programs interesting jobs at the Middlebury programs in Hangzhou and Kunming