Jiang Zemin’s Legacy of Corruption and Violence
Jiang Zemin was the leader of the Chinese Communist Party from 1989 to 2002 and president of China from 1993 to 2003. In that time, he managed to foster a culture of corruption, violence and lawlessness that continues to this day. In this just us episode of China Unscripted, we discuss Jiang Zemin's legacy, how it's still impacting China, and how his life is being portrayed in the media.
186 Hong Kong Protesters Are Still Fighting for Freedom
While the protests of 2019 can no longer be seen on Hong Kong's streets, that doesn't mean the movement has died. Protesters have gone underground, moved abroad or are biding their time in prison. In this episode of China Unscripted, we talk about the new form that protests are taking, what governments and individuals can do to hold China accountable, and the significance of China going after Apple Daily. Joining us in this episode of China Unscripted is Anna Kwok, the Strategy and Campaign Director for the DC-based nonprofit Hong Kong Democracy Council.
185 Protests in China Are Everywhere
Dissent in China is more widespread than most people know. That’s because Chinese state media doesn’t report on it, and China’s censorship apparatus either blocks or erases evidence of it. The NGO Freedom House has created a China Dissent Monitor to track various forms of protest in China. In this episode of China Unscripted, we talk about the perception that protests in China are rare, what kind of protests are the most common, and the forms of dissent the China Dissent Monitor tracks. Joining us in this episode is Kevin Slaten, the research lead for China Dissent Monitor.
184 China Sows Discord, Division to Weaken Its Adversaries
China uses "entropic warfare" to weaken its adversaries and put it in a relatively stronger position on the world stage by amplifying division and sowing chaos. In this episode of China Unscripted, we talk about China's relationship to TikTok, China's influence in the Pacific, particularly the Marshall Islands and the Solomon Islands, and the danger of Elon Musk turning Twitter into a platform like WeChat. Joining us in this podcast is Cleo Paskal, a senior fellow at The Foundation for Defense of Democracies.
183 China’s Spies Are Seducing America
The 12th Bureau of China's spy agency, the Ministry of State Security (MSS), is not your typical clandestine spy operation. Officers of MSS's 12 bureau operate in the public eye. Rather than stealing state secrets, they seek to influence public opinion on China, which is why it's made up of a coterie of of academics, artists and business people. In this episode of China Unscripted, we talk about how China has been using the 12th bureau to shape the international conversation on China, examples of public figures it has co-opted, and some of the tactics it uses to co-opt them. Joining us in this episode is Alex Joske, the author of "Spies and Lies: How China's Greatest Covert Operations Fooled the World".
182 China's Ridiculous Xi Jinping Propaganda Ahead of Party Meeting
Ahead of a meeting of Chinese Communist Party leaders, China flooded the airwaves with propaganda about Chinese leader Xi Jinping. The over-the-top projection of Xi as a man of the people could not have been more ironic. In this just us episode of China Unscripted, we talk about security, protests and propaganda in the lead-up to the 20th Party Congress, the US cutting China off from its semiconductor technology, and Elon Musk's solution for the China-Taiwan conflict.
181 China Enforcing Zero Covid Policy at Gunpoint
Videos of people in white PPE suits toting guns have gone viral in China, creating fear that China's unpopular zero covid policy could soon turn deadly. Taiwan draws a red line on China going into its airspace and territorial waters, saying any incursion by China will count as a "first strike". China is trying to turn Hong Kong communist—but slowly. We talk about that and more in this "just us" episode of China Unscripted.
180 Microchip Scarcity Could CRIPPLE World Economy
Modern life depends on microchips for the function of everything tech, from microwaves to phones to airplanes to drones. As important as microchips are though, their supply chain is just as fragile. In this episode of China Unscripted, we talk about the importance of microchips to the world economy, how a Chinese invasion of Taiwan could break the microchip supply chain, and how China is trying to shore up its chip manufacturing to insulate it from supply chain breaks. Joining us in this episode is Chris Miller, the author of Chip War: The Fight for the World's Most Critical Technology.
179 Chinese Propaganda Is Everywhere
Chinese propaganda is no longer confined to Chinese state-controlled media. The Chinese Communist Party has realized that its propaganda is much more effective when it comes from sources that appear independent from the Chinese government. In this episode of China Unscripted, we discuss how Chinese propaganda has become more international and covert, how Chinese companies and ambassadors are involved in suppressing and promoting certain narratives about China, and how China tries to co-opt social media influencers. Joining us in this episode of is Sarah Cook, the research director for China, Hong Kong and Taiwan at Freedom House.
178 Chinese Police Are Coming to a City Near You!
China is sending its police overseas, and it could soon spread to every corner of the globe. In this just us episode of China Unscripted, we talk about China's overseas police bureaus, Hong Kong's subtle protest of CCP rule, and what to call China's form of colonialism.
177 Chengdu Residents Trapped by Covid Lockdown During Earthquake
Chengdu residents were under strict Covid lockdowns when a magnitude 6.8 earthquake struck the city of 16 million. In some areas, local officials kept people from fleeing their homes due to the lockdowns. In this Just Us episode of China Unscripted, we talk about China's strict zero covid policy, China's subversion of the United Nations, a new fashion trend we've dubbed "cadre chic" and much, much more.
176 China’s Network of Spies Target Dissidents Worldwide
China has a network of spies, but not necessarily the kind of spies you might imagine. Instead of using highly-trained informants, China uses everyday citizens to monitor and suppress dissidents overseas. In this episode of China Unscripted, we discuss how China exports its repression overseas, how China uses its Covid app to track dissidents inside China, and why the Chinese Communist Party's No. 1 enemy is a group that meditates. Joining us in this episode of Levi Browde, the executive director of the Falun Dafa Information Center.