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China toughens fight against corruption

Posted September. 16, 2013 07:01,   


China’s massive security campaign “yenda” was harsh. The word meaning “hit hard” was introduced in August 1983 and continued into the summer of the following year. More than 10,000 people were executed across China, while countless people were sent to labor camps.

During the first five years of Chinese reform and opening up by Den Xiaoping, China experienced serious side effects along with dazzling economic development. Various accidents and incidents happened one after another as the society became loose. Shocking incidents continued, including bombing, hijacking of airliners and serial killings. To address this situation, Den Xiaoping carried out the controversial yenda, which laid a foundation for a quantum leap forward in its economy.

Early this year, 30 years from the yenda, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced that he would beat to death from flies to tigers. This announcement came from the sense of crisis that the existence of the party and the country was depending on the fight against corruption. Tigers referred to main culprits of corruption while flies meant misdemeanants. Following the announcement, inspection swept across China. Chinese central TV said the inspection level was highest in Chinese history which removed nine “tires,” deputy ministers or higher officials.

However, public opinion was different, saying that the inspection removed only feathers while the body remained intact. In particular, a trial in August against Bo Xilai, former clerk of Chongqing who is a child of a high ranking official, aggravated the deeply rooted public distrust. A huge case, involving a murder of the wife, loyalists’ betrayal, power struggle and a massive corruption chain, ended up being a sex murder case in court after a year. This result emphasizes a Chinese norm that sons of high-ranking officials cannot be punished.

Den Xiaoping’s yenda did not take any exceptions. In October, 1983, Zhu Guohua, a grandson of Zhu De who is referred to as the father of the People’s Liberation Army, was executed in Tianjin. Yenda did not turn a blind eye to a descendant of the most admired general among the 10 greatest generals of the Republic taking rank with Mao Zedong and Zhou Enlai. He was executed for sexual assault and theft. People call the incident, “Decapitating a chicken in front of a monkey.” Deng Xiaoping himself used this expression later.

President Xi also has called for fight against corruption without exceptions. In this regard, all eyes are on an investigation into China National Petroleum Corporation, one of the biggest Chinese state-run companies. A network of government and industry The oil company has been a center of government and industry personal connections and an oil field of Zhou Yongkang, former Secretary of Law Committee. The personal network involving the oil corporation is said to have been financial source for government officials from Shanghai, which is one of the two biggest bureaucrat clans in China.

According to a map of Chinese political connections called “Connected China” made in March by Reuters, the former secretary has eight key peers. Five of them were arrested while one more is said to be apprehended soon. All of them are high ranking officials including deputy ministers and a city secretary.

The remaining two are former President Jian Zemin and former Standing Committee Commissioner Zeng Qinghong. It goes without saying that how powerful former President Jian is. Former Commissioner Zeng is also a powerful figure who helped President Xi be who he is now. Moreover, former Secretary Zhou has controlled police, armed police, prosecution and court over the past five years, and made most important decisions as Commissioner with President Xi. Except political upheaval, no former or present Commissioners have been punished. This is why Chinese people do not trust the investigation into the former Secretary. Xi’s fight against corruption has into the scrutiny of the media.