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    Nine Commentaries on The Communist Party, the Epochtimes
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    Reporters Without Borders said in it’s 2005 special report titled “Xinhua: the world’s biggest propaganda agency”, that “Xinhua remains the voice of the sole party”, “particularly during the SARS epidemic, Xinhua has for last few months been putting out news reports embarrassing to the government, but they are designed to fool the international community, since they are not published in Chinese.”
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China: Thousands of Residents Protests Over Sichuan Quake Aid

Posted by Author on May 30, 2008

By Don Lee, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer, U.S. May 29, 2008-

LUOJIANG, CHINA — This county in Sichuan province sustained relatively little damage from the devastating May 12 earthquake. But nine days later, Luojiang felt one of the biggest political aftershocks: Thousands of residents jammed a public square here, demanding that local officials explain why relief supplies were misused.

The protesters, many of them young students, fought police with their fists and water bottles, witnesses said. They smashed police vehicles, even flipping one upside down.

“The government was corrupted, so ordinary people were all protesting,” said Yang, a 13-year-old student who left her family store nearby to participate.

The Chinese central government has been widely applauded for quickly and effectively mobilizing national resources for rescue and relief efforts, but the magnitude 7.9 quake and its aftermath have sparked anger toward local governments. In several cities and towns, residents have accused officials of corrupt acts, including taking the best tents for themselves and underreporting the extent of quake casualties so as not to draw scrutiny from Beijing.

Protests and complaints against local officials aren’t rare, but what’s different is that the grievances are being captured on television or being reported by a press that has traditionally been tightly controlled but has had more freedom in the immediate aftermath of the natural disaster.

As well, parents whose children were killed are protesting the failure of local leaders to provide answers about why so many schools collapsed while structures around them, including government buildings, remained standing. Some believe local officials are trying to cover up shoddy construction.

In Mianzhu, villagers clashed with police Sunday over the government’s handling of disaster relief and its response to the collapse of the Fuxin No. 2 Elementary School, where as many as 129 children were buried alive. Earlier that day, dozens of parents marched to complain to higher authorities in Deyang, and, in a scene that has been widely publicized, were met by Mian- zhu’s party secretary, Jiang Guohua, who kneeled and begged them to stop.

“None of us were listening to him. We all kept walking,” said Chen Xuefen, 32, whose 11-year-old son was killed when the school crumbled. “They ignored us. It has been so many days since that day, but no one came to investigate. . . . I told him [Jiang], ‘Now you’re kneeling to us, but if you can return my son to me, our entire family will kneel to you for three days and nights.’ “……. (more details from Los Angeles Times: In China, protests flare over quake aid)

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