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China Closes 1,129 Web Sites

samzenpus posted more than 9 years ago | from the no-porn-for-you dept.

Censorship 396

"The related departments have closed 1,278 illegal web sites and 114 sites promoting gambling, superstitious activities and cult propaganda according to the information provided by the informers. ... China's Ministry of Public Security rewarded a number of informers since China launched a nationwide campaign to crack downon the illegal on-line operations."

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In Communist China (0)

krymsin01 (700838) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166727)

You kill the INTERNET

no... Re:In Communist China (4, Insightful)

buswolley (591500) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166751)

the internet kills you.

These people don't survive long in those prisons.

China oh China when will you give up, and be democratic.. so that you can kick our American financial butts?

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (3, Insightful)

borgheron (172546) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166764)

Seriously, God help the United States when/if they ever realize this.

GJC

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (0, Redundant)

The_Hun (693418) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166771)

Now I see the reason of US govt's soft aproach to human right abuses there.

We are on the path now (1, Interesting)

nurb432 (527695) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166888)

Just try to be a true radical online ( or in real life ) now, advocating for the next revolution.. Outlining details techniques and equipment manufacture..

See how long before you are whisked away for 'questioning' under the patriot act.

True, we are not totally screwed, yet.. But its coming. There no 'if'.

Re:We are on the path now (4, Insightful)

Rhone (220519) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166942)

Just try to be a true radical online ( or in real life ) now, advocating for the next revolution.. Outlining details techniques and equipment manufacture..

I'm always amused by comments like this on Slashdot. Come on--no government, however "free" the country is, is going to look kindly upon people who advocate overthrowing it. Just because a government was put in place by a revolution doesn't mean it would be perfectly happy with being overthrown by another one.

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (2, Insightful)

Mattygfunk1 (596840) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166913)

The US wont need God, a prosperous (capitalist) China would be a good thing financially for all concerned. As for the military capabilities that wealth may bring - a change in foreign policy wouldn't be such a bad thing for the US at this point in time.

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (1)

krymsin01 (700838) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166948)

Yeah, why not? Could rehash the Cold War, maybe give the space industry a kick in the ass to get it's act in shape.

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (3, Interesting)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167014)

The US wont need God, a prosperous (capitalist) China would be a good thing financially for all concerned.

China already is capitalist. They say they're communist, but then North Korea say they're democratic...

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11167011)

You mean "democratic" as "US democratic", where nobody goes to vote anyway and it doesn't make any difference which of the *two* parties will be elected because both will do what corporations want and screw their citizens? Oh and the only country that doesn't have a communist party?

In this case I'd rather have china as it is. At least it doesn't screw their people for financial interests and, the government'd better serve 1 billion citizens than 100 corporations.

Re:no... Re:In Communist China (2, Insightful)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167049)

China oh China when will you give up, and be democratic.. so that you can kick our American financial butts?

When India starts to surpass them. India has the same colossal population as China, but is less well developed; however, it is a democracy. If democracy really is economically advantageous, India should overtake China at some point. As we on /. are all too well aware, the Indian IT industry is really doing well lately... That's when China will start to think about political reform - when their neighbour to the south is suddenly bigger than they are.

Frist P[censored] (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166731)

[censored] pigs!

Also blocking sites in Thailand (4, Informative)

angkor (173812) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166733)

Something similiar is happening in Thailand: http://2bangkok.com/blocked.shtml

Re:Also blocking sites in Thailand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166834)

Maybe we should close China and Thailand..

Re:Also blocking sites in Thailand (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166917)

But that is not interesting for americans. Because in china the commies rule and those a devils. So lets watch how bad they are ... oooh they close more then thousand websites ... bad bad bad.

But how does it... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166735)

help to control porn and illegal circulation? they still can do it.

Whoa (1)

evilmeow (839786) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166736)

"Superstitious activities"?

Why does this sound more and more Stalinesque to me? Uhm.. wait.. might have something to do with those and these being communists.

Are people going to get it any time soon?

Re:Whoa (1)

JNighthawk (769575) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166743)

Get what?

Re:Whoa (1)

The_Hun (693418) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166749)

Maybe, that communism in any form is not acceptable. Just a guess.

Re:Whoa (1)

JNighthawk (769575) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166819)

It was a joke.

However, communism is a decent idea on paper. Equal rights and such for everyone. Everyone working towards the greater good. The problem is, the current incarnations of communism never gave the power back to the people after siezing it.

Re:Whoa (1)

The_Hun (693418) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166851)

"It was a joke."
Sorry I should improve my English :)
Btw: "Communism on paper" actually prescribes an initial period of "dictatorship of the proletariat" over the other classes of society. Well 20th century witnessed that period in many countries - that was "communism on paper", the first stage that is.

Re:Whoa (2, Interesting)

evilmeow (839786) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166904)

Equal rights is not a decent idea. Neither on paper nor in reality. Some people are better, smarter, stronger, cuter, more brilliant than the others.

Any system that claims to provide people with equal rights is inherently flawed because it must decide where exactly those "equal" rights lay. Too much restrictions and the more enlightened part of the society will suffer; too much freedom and the least enlightened part of the society will rebel.

Under equal rights, no one can be perfectly happy with what they get - some will always feel they deserve more or that the other group does not deserves as much as this one.

In order to enforce equality, people must be made equal: not only in rights, but also in obligations, opportunities, abilities, skills and possibilities. I don't think I need to explain -what- kind of society exactly I'm describing here, as I am sure we've all read Orwell.

Re:Whoa (1)

Jedi Alec (258881) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166983)

Everyone working towards the greater good.

That's the problem with communism in practice. It is based on a mistaken view of human nature. Human's aren't naturally good/caring/giving people, they're mostly selfish bastards that couldn't care less what happens outside their white picket fence so long as it doesn't affect them or their family/friends. The whole concept of a "greater good" quickly goes down the drain when there's mortgages/car payments/diapers that need getting paid for one way or another.

Re:Whoa (2, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167039)

Communism works in some smaller systems - like communes, for example. Or most families. I know my family never practiced a democracy. They key to communism working, it seems, is that those that give up their personal possessions for the greater good do so voluntarily - parents, people working together in a commune, etc. Trying to enforce communism on a group of people that don't want to live communally is what leads to trouble.

Who wrote this? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166741)

You can barely understand this post, is this some undercover Chinese agent working for Slashdot posting propaganda?

So how long...? (4, Insightful)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166744)

So how long until I can remove the block on a pair of CNLink's /20 networks from my firewall?

My web server was getting massively log spammed from them (even though I don't publish my web stats). The first time round I actually bothered to report the attacks to their abuse address but naturally got no response at all. So the second time I got attacked I had no choice but to just drop all traffic from both their /20's.

When will these ISPs realise they're shooting themselves in the foot by forcing everyone to just outright block their networks?

Re:So how long...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166761)

Uh... why would they stop those kinds of sites? That kind of service those sites provide bring in dollars to china. Seems the ones they're stopping are the ones that threaten china.

Re:So how long...? (1)

FireFury03 (653718) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166777)

Uh... why would they stop those kinds of sites? That kind of service those sites provide bring in dollars to china.

Right, because China's internet access is going to be so great when the rest of the world have blocked the whole country...

Re:So how long...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166972)

Isn't that their goal?

Re:So how long...? (2, Interesting)

Kosi (589267) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166887)

When will these ISPs realise they're shooting themselves in the foot by forcing everyone to just outright block their networks?

As soon as really everyone blocks them.

China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (3, Interesting)

borgheron (172546) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166750)

So far it seems as though they've cracked down on:

1) Freedom of Religion.
2) Freedom of Expression.

Now, I know that we're not talking about the US here, so the Chinese don't have these rights. It's so blatant that the Chinese are never going to change their stance on human rights.

Gotta love the Chinese.

GJC

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (4, Insightful)

tacocat (527354) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166780)

China
Migrating from Socialism to a Capitalistic Republic.
America
Migrating from a Democracy to a Capitalistic Republic.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166818)

Man, I wish had a +5 Bitter Irony mod points for this.
I am afraid we are not even close to realizing how true this, or worse these scenarios are...

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (4, Insightful)

MrNemesis (587188) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166835)

I'll see your American capitalistic republic, and raise you a corporate plutocracy.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (1)

CGP314 (672613) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166876)

I'll see your corporate plutocracy and raise you a fascist theocracy.


-Colin [colingregorypalmer.net]

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (2, Insightful)

DJTodd242 (560481) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166911)

...If this goes on...

Excuse me citizen. Nehemiah Scudder wants to have a word with you.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (3, Informative)

rossdee (243626) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166985)

Mod -1 Obscure Heinlein reference

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (5, Interesting)

IO ERROR (128968) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166845)

China
Migrating from Socialism to a Capitalistic Republic.
America
Migrating from a Democracy to a Capitalistic Republic.

I'm afraid one of those is a little backward. Try this instead:

America
Migrating from a Republic to a Capitalistic Democracy

If you think America was ever intended to be a democracy, you are sadly mistaken. The founding fathers considered democracy to be the most vile thing they could think of, even worse than the Crown from which they separated. That's why they didn't set one up here.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (4, Informative)

rattler14 (459782) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166969)

Please mod parent up. For details, please confer with article 4 section 4 of a little document I like to call "the US constitution"

http://www.constitution.org/cons/constitu.txt

we have a constitutional republic, it just turns out we've turned it into a democracy... aka the tyranny of the majority.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (1)

ratamacue (593855) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166941)

Did you just claim that voluntary trade is the source of oppression?

Only government holds the "right" to initiate force as a means to an end. You have implied that capitalism is somehow oppressive, which just isn't logical. True capitalism is entirely voluntary. How in the world can an act of voluntary association be oppressive?

You have to realize that what we have in the US isn't capitalism. Not even close. On the contrary, the US government is heavily entangled in the "free" market.

You're just going to have to find a different boogie-man. Capitalism is no more oppressive than any other act of voluntary association.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (1)

PasteEater (590893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166995)

You must seriously be kidding (as retarded as that sounds). From the Merriam-Webster website found here [m-w.com] .

Republic- (1) : a government having a chief of state who is not a monarch and who in modern times is usually a president (2) : a political unit (as a nation) having such a form of government b (1) : a government in which supreme power resides in a body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by elected officers and representatives responsible to them and governing according to law

I don't mean to be rude, because you're right... we are slowly progressing towards similar governments. But let's not confuse things further.

Respectfully.....

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (1)

prash_n_rao (465747) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167018)

Heck, do you even know what the terms "Capitalistic", "Republic" and "Democracy" mean?

Here is a rather dumbed-down explanation:
http://capitalism.org/faq/capitalism .htm

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (2, Interesting)

onion2k (203094) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166791)

The article only states that the websites were 'illegal', not the actual law the sites broke. If these were child porn, for example, they'd have been shut down in any number of other countries. The 114 shut down for promoting gambling etc is a little more sinister, but again, theres lots of places in the UK and USA you're not allowed to promote gambling..

There isn't really enough information in the article to say either way whether or not China has actually done anything particularly bad, or indeed different to the way western governments would have reacted.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (2, Informative)

theskeptic (699213) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167000)

Euphemisms the chinese govt uses:

superstitious propoganda- church. christianity.
cults- falun gong etc

Religious freedom is very heavily monitored. Read the article from the nytimes below.

THE GREAT DIVIDE | COMPETING FOR SOULS
Violence Taints Religion's Solace for China's Poor
By JOSEPH KAHN

Published: November 25, 2004

UAIDE, China - Kuang Yuexia and her husband, Cai Defu, considered themselves good Christians. They read the Bible every night before bed. When their children misbehaved, they dealt with them calmly. They did not curse or tell lies.

But when Zhang Chengli, a neighbor, began hounding them last year to leave their underground religious sect and join his, it seemed like a test of satanic intensity. He scaled the wall of their garden, ambushed them in the fields and roused them after midnight with frantic calls to convert before Jesus arrived for his Second Coming and sent them to hell.

Advertisement

Ms. Kuang poured dirty water on Mr. Zhang's head. Mr. Cai punched him. Yet Mr. Zhang persisted for months until the couple's sect intervened and stopped his proselytizing for good.

Mr. Zhang's body - eyes, ears and nose ripped from his face - was found by a roadside 300 miles from this rural town in Jilin Province, in northeastern China. The police arrested Mr. Cai and fellow sect members. One of them died in police custody during what fellow inmates described as a torture session.

China's growing material wealth has eluded the countryside, home to two-thirds of its population. But there is a bull market in sects and cults competing for souls. That has alarmed the authorities, who seem uncertain whether the spread of religion or its systematic repression does more to turn peasants against Communist rule.

The demise of Communist ideology has left a void, and it is being filled by religion. The country today has more church-going Protestants than Europe, according to several foreign estimates. Buddhism has become popular among the social elite. Beijing college students wait hours for a pew during Christmas services in the capital's 100 packed churches.

But it is the rural underclass that is most desperate for salvation. The rural economy has grown relatively slowly. Corruption and a collapse in state-sponsored medical care and social services are felt acutely. But government-sanctioned churches operate mainly in cities, where they can be closely monitored, and priests and ministers by law can preach only to those who come to them.

The authorities do not ban religious activity in the countryside. But they have made it so difficult for established churches to operate there that many rural Chinese have turned to underground, often heterodox religious movements.

Charismatic sect leaders denounce state-sanctioned churches. They promise healing in a part of the country where the state has all but abandoned responsibility for public health. They also promise deliverance from the coming apocalypse, and demand money, loyalty and strict secrecy from their members.

Three Grades of Servants, a banned Christian sect that claims several million followers, made inroads in Huaide and other northern towns beginning nearly a decade ago. It lured peasants like Yu Xiaoping, as well as her neighbor, Ms. Kuang, away from state-authorized churches. Its underground network provided spiritual and social services to isolated villages.

But it also attracted competition from Eastern Lightning, its archrival, which sought to convert Ms. Yu, Ms. Kuang and others. The two sects clashed violently. Both became targets of a police crackdown.

Xu Shuangfu, the itinerant founder of Three Grades of Servants, who says he has divine powers, was arrested last summer along with scores of associates. Mr. Xu was suspected of having ordered the execution of religious enemies, police officers said.

Yet such efforts rarely stop the spread of underground churches and sects, which derive legitimacy from government pressure.

"Beijing cannot tolerate religious groups that are not directly under its control," says Susanna Chen, a researcher in Taiwan who has studied the rural sects. "But for every group they repress, there are two to replace it. And the new ones are often more dangerous than those that came before."

The Comfort of Baptism Huaide is in the heart of China's breadbasket. Corn grows 10 feet tall on treeless plains that surround rust-belt factories and tidy brick villages, stretching east to the North Korean border.

After the autumn harvest, the fields have been stripped of all but a foliage of corn leaves and the town settles into a languorous winter rhythm. But the placid surface hides Huaide's spiritual turmoil.

Yu Xiaoping, a farmer and shop attendant here, grew up an atheist. Her father was a Communist Party member and a elementary school administrator who frowned on religion, especially when he discovered that his sister attended church. But he died of stomach cancer a decade ago, leaving a small plot of land, a tiny pension and a dying ideology.

Ms. Yu got a part-time job in the local farmers market. She, her sister or her baby niece slept shoulder-to-shoulder with her mother on the family kang, or platform bed, in their two-room home. She felt pinched for cash and confined.

One winter day in 1995 her aunt invited her to attend services in Gongzhuling, about 40 miles away, the closest state-authorized Protestant church. Ms. Yu agreed on a whim. She was surprised to find the simple beige-and-white assembly hall packed with 700 congregants, praying and singing in one voice. Ms. Yu returned the next week, this time taking the bus alone. On her third trip, she was baptized.

Ms. Yu is now 36 years old, petite, rosy-cheeked and prone to giggle. But she talks about having a purpose in life imparted by God.

"Until the day I found God, I felt like I was wandering aimlessly," she said. "Suddenly I felt clear of mind and free of guilt and sin."

Huaide did not have its own church. But soon Ms. Yu received invitations from new friends to attend private services. Villagers discussed the Bible. Sometimes a visiting minister delivered a sermon.

Many visiting ministers criticized the government-licensed church Ms. Yu had attended. They questioned its mandate that parishioners must be at least 18 years old, arguing that God intended children to hear the Gospel. The state's requirement that church members register offended her, as did the stipulation that Communist Party officials, like her late father, forswear Christianity.

"Religion must be based on your heart, not on such rules," she said.

One day a visiting minister - Ms. Yu says she remembers him clearly for his southern accent - delivered a scathing criticism of state-backed churches. He said they emphasized outdated, literal readings of the Bible instead of interpreting how scripture should inform today's world. He urged her to consider an alternative that he said brought Jesus' teaching alive: Three Grades of Servants.

The Appeal of a SectXu Shuangfu, who the authorities say was born Xu Wenkou, is a religious entrepreneur. Now in his 60's, he founded Three Grades of Servants in Henan Province in the late 1980's and oversaw its growth despite serving time in custody.

The sect's hierarchy is based on what Mr. Xu argued is the theme of a trinity that runs through scripture, including three servants of God (Moses, Aaron and Pashur, the ancestor of a priestly family) in the Old Testament, and three friends of Jesus (Martha, Mary and Lazarus) in the New Testament. Mr. Xu occupies the top grade and maintains that he, as Moses did, talks to God.

The group is millenarian. Mr. Xu, followers say, predicted that Jesus would return to earth and eliminate nonbelievers in 1989, then again in 1993. When this did not happen, Mr. Xu explained that even God misjudged how long Abraham's descendants would stay in Egypt. He did not set a third date for the Second Coming.

Though he failed to divine the future, Mr. Xu did reach deeply into the lives of his peasant followers. The sect played a guiding role in Ms. Yu's life not unlike the way the Communist Party, in its heyday of molding people according to Maoist and Marxist doctrine, shaped her father's life.

Ms. Yu reported to a "fellow worker" in Three Grades of Servants, a woman who went by the code name Xing Zhi, or Fortunate Aspirations. Xing Zhi coordinated prayer sessions, collected donations and taught Ms. Yu what to wear, what to eat, when to wake up in the morning. She even matched Ms. Yu with another of her young charges, Zhang Qinghai. Ms. Yu and Mr. Zhang read the Bible together, discussed their goals and fell in love. They married a decade ago, six months after meeting.

"You are not required to marry within the group," Ms. Yu said. "But Xing Zhi said if you find someone you love who is also in the group, then that is the ideal."

Like Ms. Yu, Kuang Yuexia and her husband, Cai Defu, had their first religious experience at a state-authorized church. But the distance and the demands of raising two girls and a boy made their visits infrequent.

Then in 1995, Mr. Cai developed a brain tumor. He underwent an operation that forced the family to borrow $1,500 and left his speech impaired. Doctors recommended further procedures. But they could afford no more medical bills and he recuperated at home, slowly.

Three Grades of Servants sent a local organizer, Chen Zhihua, to read the Bible and sing hymns with Ms. Kuang and the bedridden Mr. Cai. Sect members helped Ms. Kuang tend her four acres of corn during her husband's illness.

Ms. Kuang, 46, talks in nervous soliloquies that often give way to tears when she discusses religion. She said Three Grade of Servants became a defining force in her life.

"I loved the songs and the discipline," she recalled. "I used to get angry with the children before they taught me how to change my personality. I learned that you must eliminate hate from your mind."

She said the teachings improved her husband's health. The sect preached calm when facing trial, and Mr. Cai learned to control the flow of blood to his brain, she said, reducing the hemorrhaging that had occurred when he became stressed. He resumed working in the fields.

"Enhancing our understanding of the Bible achieved results that expensive medicine could not achieve," Ms. Kuang said.

A few years ago Ms. Yu and Ms. Kuang received a summons to attend a service at the home of Ms. Chen, the local organizer, and discovered that the "big servant" himself, Xu Shuangfu, had arrived to deliver a sermon. Everyone kept silent in his presence.

Ms. Kuang remembers better how he looked than what he said. He had round cheeks but very white skin and a beatific smile, making him appear part Chinese and part Western.

"He looked like Jesus," she said.

On the Margins Since the early days of economic reforms in the 1980's, China has eased restrictions on religious activity, especially in the cities.

But registration requirements and periodic harassment limit growth, as does a chronic shortage of clerics. The five officially recognized religions - Buddhism, Taoism, Islam, Catholicism and Protestantism - cannot promote themselves or expand easily. The goal seems to be to prevent any from acquiring clout to rival the Communist Party.

The losers are marginalized people who need spiritual support the most, like laid-off workers and rural migrants in cities and peasants in the countryside. They get little benefit from churches that cannot, by law, reach out to them.

One movement that took advantage of this gap was Falun Gong, which espouses an idiosyncratic mix of traditional Chinese qigong exercises and meditation. Its millions of loyal followers resisted stubbornly, though peacefully, when the government crushed it in 1999.

Christian sects form and mutate in the countryside, vying to attract the same disadvantaged classes.

"Cults are thriving among those the government has abandoned," says Kang Xiaoguang, a political scientist at Qinghua University in Beijing. "They provide social services the government no longer does. They give people a sense of belonging," he said.

There are the Shouters and the Spirit Church, the Disciples Association and White Sun, the Holistic Church and the Crying Faction. Many are apocalyptic. A few are strongly anti-Communist. Three Grades of Servants and Eastern Lightning are among the largest, each claiming membership in the millions.

Their identities may be less important than their profusion. They erupt suddenly, shocking authorities with their secrecy, financial wherewithal, tight-knit organization and, occasionally, their willingness to use force.

For the Communist Party, this is uncomfortably reminiscent of China's past. Millenarian sects have been harbingers of dynastic change since the Yellow Turbans contributed to the fall of the Han Dynasty at the end of the second century. As recently as the 19th century, the Taiping and Boxer rebellions weakened the Qing Dynasty and fostered the social turmoil that eventually helped the Communists themselves to take power.

Earlier this year, the government ordered the agency established to combat Falun Gong, called the 610 Office, to pursue a crackdown against rural cults.

"The threat posed by Falun Gong has been superseded by organizations in the countryside that are vying with the party for people's hearts," a document posted by the 610 Office says. "Some are even the spearhead of a movement to seize power from the Communist Party."

The Religious BattleThe 610 Office lists Eastern Lightning as a top target. The group was founded in 1990 by a woman, surnamed Deng, who claims that she is the returned Jesus Christ. It recruits mainly from other religious groups and often uses tactics that include spying, kidnapping and brainwashing, according to two people who say they were forcibly held by the group.

Authorities banned Eastern Lightning several years ago. But it has expanded to become by some foreign estimates the largest underground religious group in China.

In Huaide, as in other northeastern hotspots, Eastern Lightning set its sights on the main local religious force: Three Grades of Servants. In early 2003, Eastern Lightning recruited a few members in Huaide. They in turn were given conversion quotas and an urgent timetable: to save as many souls as possible before the female Jesus wiped out nonbelievers.

Ms. Yu and her husband were approached by two former members of their own sect who had converted. They were given a 1,000-page customized Bible and hymn book, bound in yellow. Eastern Lightning followers returned frequently to discuss the contents and persuade them to convert.

"If you didn't say yes to one person, they would just send another, like messengers from the Devil," Ms. Yu said.

Zhang Chengli, a local farmer and Eastern Lightning operative, headed the team to convert Ms. Kuang and Mr. Cai. According to Ms. Kuang, he followed them to their home and in the fields. His message was blunt.

"He told us that if we joined Lightning, then God would protect us," Ms. Kuang said. "But if we didn't join, we would die."

After midnight one night he stood outside their bedroom with a bullhorn. He yelled through the window, "Convert or die!" Ms. Kuang said.

Another day he clipped the wings of a pigeon and tossed it into their vegetable garden. The bird hopped around until Ms. Kuang captured it and brought it into her pantry, thinking it might make a meal. When she inspected it, she found a note glued to its belly. It read, "Those who cannot see the light will die."

To get rid of Mr. Zhang, Ms. Kuang dumped household wastewater on his head. Mr. Cai, ignoring his own sect's teachings on remaining unruffled, punched Mr. Zhang and smashed his bicycle tires with a metal pipe.

When Mr. Zhang persisted, they considered alerting the police. But they were themselves part of an underground Christian group. And they decided it was morally wrong.

"However bad he was," Ms. Kuang said, "I could not report another Christian to the police."

A Lethal Solution Three Grades of Servants had been fighting defections in several northeastern provinces. So when Xing Zhi, the chief coordinator for the sect in Huaide, heard about Mr. Zhang's campaign, she took decisive measures.

She told Mr. Cai to notify her the next time Mr. Zhang came calling, Ms. Kuang said. Ms. Yu's husband was deployed in a stakeout. When Mr. Zhang pedaled by, he was intercepted, gagged with tape and stuffed into the back of a white van, which sped away, according to local residents who saw the abduction.

Assassins sliced away Mr. Zhang's facial features before discarding his corpse. That turned out be a calling card of Three Grades of Servants, which has been linked to several grisly murders. The police were able to identify him only because he was carrying a report card from his son's school, Huaide Elementary, in a back pocket. They began a crackdown.

In an evening raid, Ms. Yu and her husband; Ms. Kuang and Mr. Cai; and Ms. Chen, their neighbor and fellow sect member, were whisked to Jilin provincial police headquarters. Ms. Kuang was so nervous she threw up in the back seat.

Ms. Yu and Ms. Kuang said that they were shackled to metal chairs and interrogated through the night in adjacent rooms. In the early hours, both women recalled hearing Ms. Chen scream and moan in pain.

When dawn broke, the police abruptly suspended their inquest and dismissed Ms. Yu and Ms. Kuang with orders to say nothing about their detention. Shortly thereafter, the women learned that Ms. Chen had died in custody. The police told Ms. Chen's family that she had suffered a "sudden heart attack."

Nearly a year after they were detained, their husbands remain in custody, though they have yet to be charged with a crime. Xing Zhi, the sect's promoter, was also arrested.

The founder of the sect, Xu Shuangfu, was apprehended this summer after a long manhunt. Christian activist groups abroad led a campaign to protest the arrest, citing it as evidence of harsh reprisals against house churches. China's Public Security Bureau said in a written statement that Mr. Xu was charged with ordering murders and leading an "illegal cult."

Ms. Kuang now lives alone in Huaide. Her children have moved away to find jobs in the city. She says she lives in fear of retaliation, either by Eastern Lightning or the police.

Recently she spotted two police officers entering her yard, presumably to resume their interrogation. She said she was so afraid of another round of grilling that she drank a bottle of rat poison in front of them. She was taken to the hospital to have her stomach pumped.

Ms. Yu still lives with her mother and sister. A charcoal grill her husband used to sell barbecued meat on the street is rusting by their door, filled with rainwater and sludge.

The police confiscated her Bible. But she still prays often for her husband's release. The violence in her village only confirmed her faith in Xu Shuangfu. She said he predicted all along that evil authorities and devilish sects would compete for influence at the crucial juncture.

"This is exactly what happens," she said, "when the world is coming to an end."

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11167042)

superstitious propoganda- church. christianity.

I see no disconnect. That pretty much sums it up for me.

China is freer in some ways (1, Interesting)

ValourX (677178) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166806)

Take a look at this [rtoddking.com] . It's probably one of the most spectacular displays of art I have ever seen -- a whole snow/ice village filled with sculptures.

I thought it was the neatest thing I had ever seen, but what struck me later was the sad fact that this treasure could never happen in the United States because no insurance company would cover it. People would sue left and right, and whomever put on that show would go bankrupt. Take a look at the people climbing the wall of ice. I don't know about you, but that looks like a hell of a lot of fun. I'll never know because that kind of "ride" can't ever happen in America because of the litigious assholes that sue people for a living.

I'm currently wrestling with the idea that China may actually be more free than the US. Not because of this single example, but for many reasons... no-knock warrants and other "anti-terrorism" measures that, to date, do not appear to have stopped any terrorists; RIAA/MPAA lawsuits against "john doe" defendants; software patent claims; anti-smoking laws; a whole bunch of shit. What can't you do in China? You can't speak out against the government (the more I hear angry, uninformed EU and US Bush protesters, the more I think I might actually enjoy that), you can't openly practice religion (what?? no Catholic priest child molesters, no Christian wackos and their 10 commandments plaques, no Muslim fundamentalists to kill me?), and you can't have websites that spread superstition. And this is bad... how?

-Jem

Re:China is freer in some ways (1)

Burb (620144) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166874)

I sympathise with your comments in some ways, especially the way that the US is increasingly becoming a lawyer's paradise where frivolous lawsuits are increasing. I am not the biggest fan of the US, but I can't go along with the second part of your post.

I would infer from your comments that you are, broadly speaking, a supporter of the current US president, and you don't appear to be sympathetic to organised religion. In any case, you have the right to those beliefs under US law. They just happen in these specific instances to match the beliefs of the Chinese authorities. Just because your current belief system matches the current belief system of another government doesn't make that other government intrinsically "more free". You are confusing "more free" with "more like me".

Your opinions may change with time, and the pendulum of US politics may eventually swing leftwards. But, we trust, the US will maintain its constitutional safeguards to give you freedom of expression when you find yourself against the tide.

I apologise if I have misrepresented your views which I have tried to infer from the posting.

Re:China is freer in some ways (1)

ValourX (677178) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166910)

"I would infer from your comments that you are, broadly speaking, a supporter of the current US president, and you don't appear to be sympathetic to organised religion."

The two are mutually exclusive, I think. I neither support nor protest President Bush.

My opinions may change, but what I am allowed to do with them is what I am concerned with. China makes no bones about what it allows and disallows. The US pretends to be free, but is shackled by confusing and sometimes secret laws and loopholes, and a generally fascist attitude toward the non-rich. If this were what I signed up for, then that's one thing. It's frustrating, though, being led to believe that you are free when in actuality you're quite restricted.

In China, prison is where you go if you break the law. In the US, prison is where you go if you break the law and couldn't afford a top-tier lawyer to get you out of it (I am still wondering how Scott Peterson can be sentanced to death in the absence of hard evidence, yet OJ Simpson walks free). I'd rather know my limits than constantly be fooled by the superficial veneer of freedom.

-Jem

Re:China is freer in some ways (2, Interesting)

Burb (620144) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167010)

Freedom can, it's true, be just a superficial veneer. And it's true that the US can be a dreadful place if you are poor. As a middle-class European, I find it a great place to visit but would not necessarily jump at the chance to live there. Most of us don't question the beliefs instilled into us and childhood. To an outsider, it seems that the "saluting of the flag" business at the start of each school day serves to drum into children a belief that the US is a great place to be without providing much evidence of same. Anyway....

China's record on human rights would means that prison is a place where you go if you break the law OR if you a nuisance to the government. Try discussing the Tiananmen square "incident" Communist and post-communist societies like China have still a poor track record in this area. Look carefully and you will find secret laws and loopholes as bad, or worse, than the USA.

Re:China is freer in some ways (1)

borgheron (172546) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166976)

You infer a great deal, incorrectly. :)

I am, for the most part, a Libertarian. I am also a member of the ACLU. This makes me a really big believer in human rights above all things.

I despise George W. Bush, because he's destroyed this countries freedoms.

I dislike, deeply, the fact that the US is miring itself in legal bunk. If you check the anti-patent petition at the bottom you'll see the extent of my wish to change the current situation here.

I believe that people should have the right to believe in whatever God they wish.

I'm not against "organized" religion so much as I am against "state imposed" religion, and there is a difference.

I'm not sure if you're from the US or not, but I'm inferring that you aren't given your rather prejudiced view of Americans. :) So far your assessment of me has been entirely wrong.

Later, GJC

Re:China is freer in some ways (1)

borgheron (172546) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166979)

My apologies for the last paragraph in my previous post, I thought you were replying to me. :)

GJC

Re:China is freer in some ways (1)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166877)

you can't openly practice religion, .... and you can't have websites that spread superstition. And this is bad... how?

I would be with you on this one but my horoscope said to do otherwise.

Re:China is freer in some ways (5, Insightful)

PasteEater (590893) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167045)

You can't speak out against the government (the more I hear angry, uninformed EU and US Bush protesters, the more I think I might actually enjoy that), you can't openly practice religion (what?? no Catholic priest child molesters, no Christian wackos and their 10 commandments plaques, no Muslim fundamentalists to kill me?), and you can't have websites that spread superstition. And this is bad... how?

You have removed choices for me and for everyone else.

Perhaps you would like me to pick out your clothes for tomorrow. Better yet, I'll decide what kind of car you drive (if I decide you get to drive a car at all) and then I'll figure out if you are worthy of...?

We each make choices everyday. Whether they *seem* like small or large decisions, would you like someone else to make those decisions for you?

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (4, Interesting)

WIAKywbfatw (307557) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166840)

It's not so blatant to me. Change will come, but it will most likely come slowly rather than quickly, if for no reason other than China is a big country, with a huge population that enjoy a range of disparate lifestyles.

Sometime in our lifetimes China is going to become a consumer culture, consuming many of the goods that it already makes and exports to the rest of the world. My PDA was made in China. My keyboard was made in China. My colour laser printer was made in China. Can you see where I'm going with this?

Sooner or later, China's markets will open up to near Western levels. Chinese people will buy widescreen TVs, computers and designer goods. And when that happens, the gates will open too, albeit in a controlled manner. How strict those controls will be or how they will function is open to speculation but for over a decade now China has been becoming a more relaxed and less restrictive society.

Just because they have limits on internet access now that doesn't mean that they will always have limits on internet access. The US once had limits on the rights of blacks and women, yet it progressed from that point and China will to.

Don't forget, China isn't just a different country it's a different country with a totally different culture to that which we're familiar with in the West. Concepts that seem alien to us are natural to them, and vice versa. And, obviously, it's the negative aspects of Chinese society that always get played up rather than the positive ones.

And when it comes to things as subjective as human rights, please realise that there's an "eye of the beholder" aspect to be considered. You might regard China as being oppressive when it comes to religion or expression but there's not a country in the world that hasn't done the same at some time or another or that has its own human rights abuses going on right now.

So to recap, don't dismiss China as being stuck permanently on hold. China will progress and develop, but at its own pace and in its own time. Who knows when change will come and how suddenly. After all, the day before the Berlin Wall fell, or before Nelson Mandela was released, or any ground-breaking event, who would have predicted that such a radical change would come overnight?

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (1)

borgheron (172546) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166940)

I am quite familiar with the Chinese people and their culture. I was engaged to a woman from Hong Kong, who's family original from mainland China, for 6 years (it didn't work out for personal reasons). Also, I've been a student of eastern philosophy for much of my life.

It's these positive things which make me hate the negative things which I hear coming out of China so much. The fact that the government of China has absolutely no regard for the freedoms of it's people is gut wrenching to me. I guess this is why I get so cynical when it comes to stuff like this, because I'm so damn sick of hearing it.

I agree with what you're saying about the Chinese market. Perhaps that will help the human rights situation in China as well. When (not if) China wakes up and joins the modern world, the West is in for a shock of massive proportions. China has an awesome economic engine just waiting to get started.

GJC

Perhaps WE are the backward ones (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166855)

China just opened up it's religious freedoms, actually.

As for censorship... even we censor certain things we find unpalatable: child porn, for instance. Perhaps the only difference is that other countries have more foresight to see the harm some publications do to society (after all, we're still recovering from the stupidity of tobacco advertising, images promoting eating disorders, etc.).

Just because it's different, doesn't mean it's wrong. At the very least, when another culture chooses to manage its society differently, we should give the other approach serious consideration, and choose the best, or a compromise between the advantages of both.

Re:China Cracks Down on Freedoms... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166923)

There's nine hunderd million of them in the world today, you better learn to like them, that's what I say...

Chorus.

Gov't Represses Rights of Chinese People (4, Insightful)

reallocate (142797) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167020)

The Chinese people have the same rights as Americans or anyone else. We all have the same rights. The Chinese government simply represses the rights of its citizens.

It is both wrong an very dangerous to think our rights come to us as gifts from our governments.

Re:Gov't Represses Rights of Chinese People (1)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167057)

It is both wrong an very dangerous to think our rights come to us as gifts from our governments.

True, but it is also wrong and very dangerous to think that everyone has rights as a matter of course. Such thinking leads to us taking our rights for granted.

Our rights are what we have won for ourselves, by confronting our governments and the governments of other nations, in 1215 and in 1776 and in 1789 and in 1945... We'll keep them as long as we still think they're important. Of course, nowadays the argument seems to be that we must give up some rights because otherwise we might get killed by Terrorists; so, it seems that we no longer consider liberty worth dying for. What rights we will still have at the end of this, I can't help but wonder...

Sounds like now is the perfect time to use Tor (2, Informative)

Agret (752467) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166755)

Sounds like now is the perfect time to use Tor which was previously covered today :) http://yro.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=04/12/22/20 31229&tid=95&tid=158&tid=153&tid=17 [slashdot.org]

Re:Sounds like now is the perfect time to use Tor (1)

tirloni (681156) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166893)

I tried it and it works great. My IP changes every minute or so. The only problem that I'm having is random slowness but I think it'll improve over time.. gotta have more people sponsoring onion server

How many sites exactly? (4, Interesting)

cybertears (778765) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166758)

China Closes 1,129 Web Sites The related departments have closed 1,278 illegal web sites and 114 sites ... how many sites were closed? Is it 1,129 as the headline reads, or 1,392 as the body states (1,278 + 114)

Re:How many sites exactly? (1)

Daniel Ellard (799842) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166852)

The point is not exactly how many sites. The point is that they're closing lots of sites.

It's not how much is being censored, it's that they're actively censoring.

Re:How many sites exactly? (1)

skinfitz (564041) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166882)

If someone is going to quote an *exact* number in the title, then a different number in the body, then it's perfectly reasonable to question that number.

If the headline had been "China closes >1000 sites" then fair enough, but to mention a specific number in the headline, then to quote a different number in the body, should and does raise questions.

Re:How many sites exactly? (1)

budgenator (254554) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166990)

The related departments have closed 1,278 illegal web sites and 114 sites promoting gambling, superstitious activities and cult propaganda according to the information provided by the informers
I'd guess that one of the 114 sites that promoted gambling, superstition and cult activities was legal, but closed any ways.

1984? (5, Funny)

james_bray (188143) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166759)

"...China's Ministry of Public Security..."

Sounds suspiciously like the "Ministry of Truth" from to me....

Re:1984? (5, Interesting)

Peden (753161) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166774)

Exchange that with "Homeland Security" and I think you will get the picture....

Re:1984? (2, Insightful)

yulle (724126) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166841)

or "Ministry of Homeland Security"...

Re:1984? (1)

Atrax (249401) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166957)

"...China's Ministry of Public Security..."

Sounds suspiciously like the "Ministry of Truth" from to me....


Sounds more like "Department of Homeland Security" to my ears.

In Socialist China... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166762)

...blocking websites is always positive.

China needs to watch itself... (1, Troll)

MrRTFM (740877) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166776)

... if they aren't careful with their draconian rules then they will end up like Australia.

I can say that because I live here, and I am extremely embarrased when yet another stupid law gets passed, which doesn't do anything at all - except make the lawmakers (and its citizens) look dumb.

Re:China needs to watch itself... (1)

kbw (524341) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166916)

Don't feel isolate in this. We in the UK have similarly enabling legislation, our RIP bill for starters.

Re:China needs to watch itself... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166935)

You mean a parliament which passes laws most of its citizens don't want? Sounds like every country to me, not just Australia. We don't do so bad here i reckon, although with Howard in for another term (with senate majority), ill probably be eating my words.

Re:China needs to watch itself... (1)

metricmusic (766303) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167044)

We need to be on the big bully's side.

Too Little (1)

tacocat (527354) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166800)

Until they start lining up spammers I really don't care what they do with their section of the Internet.

I'm still for giving the e-chinese the silent treatment.

Whoa ! (1)

sunsrin (842762) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166802)

Downloading/Hosting US movies and music isn't illegal ! Host BT trackers there !

It happens... (0, Redundant)

mstefanus (705346) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166812)

Western goverments and corporations force websites to close all the time... Is China not allowed to do the same?

Re:It happens... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166859)

re: Western countries

What's the process and for what reasons are sites closed in the West? Is there a fundamental difference between the two? Is there a significant quantitative difference? Is there recourse in those respective jurisdictions for the losing party?

Re:It happens... (1)

The_Hun (693418) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166963)

Is others' sin/amorality/infringing-of-rights an excuse for anyone to do the same?

Wonder if it works for something useful as well (2, Interesting)

QuasiRob (134012) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166817)

The article implies that concerned citizens can report websites that they consider to be illegal somewhere on the www.china.cn website. Might be worth flooding it with reports of all the spam sites operating in China, I just need to find the page to report it on.

It doesnt matter what China does (2, Funny)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166827)

Monty Python said the Chinese were nice, and I quote

"I like Chinese,
I like Chinese,
They only come up to your knees"

So that made it official. We like Chinese.

Re:It doesnt matter what China does (1)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166847)

sounds liek these guys forgot about the :

"They're always willing and they're ready to please" part

got to love anti-religions and anti-superstition laws

Please can we have them in the West.

Re:It doesnt matter what China does (1)

YOU LIKEWISE FAIL IT (651184) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166934)

I love posts like this. I'm an evangelical atheist - I actively engage people and try to drag them around to my point of view [1]. However, let me tell you, trying to ban religion is short sighted at best, and an affront to the kindred beliefs of atheism ( personal liberty, freedom from prejudice, etc etc ) at worst.

If you want to become a religious bigot of an unsual stripe, be my guest, but make no mistake - orthodox religion holds the whip in the west right now, and if you get the legislature involved knee deep in matters of the spirit, I guarantee it will blow up in the face of those of us who just want to be left alone by the government to practice as we choose.

YLFI
[1] Strike them hard, drag them to... the library?

Re:It doesnt matter what China does (1)

DrSkwid (118965) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166975)


I know, bans do nothing but opress. Each to their own.

The meddlings of church in the state (and vise versa) are well documented.

But when you have leaders who say they are doing the work of god you've got to wonder about their sanity let alone suitability.

Our Mr. Blair found religion for his trip to the top and is pretty suspect. I'd love to have an evening discussing theology with these guys and see how deep their particular rabbit hole goes.

Do you *really* think there's some guy in the sky watching your every move 24/7 ready to judge your misdemeanours to classify you for eternity in heaven or purgatory ? Really ? Are you sure ?

Re:It doesnt matter what China does (2, Informative)

LordLucless (582312) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167027)

Better get your own theology straight before you do - AFAIK, no Christian denomination teaches that. Standard Christian theology teaches that hell is the default destination of every human being (ie: not dependant on your misdemeanours) and protestant Christians at least (not too up on Catholic theology) believe that you are saved from hell by the grace of God (again, not dependant on your actions.)

By the by, do you really believe non-living chemicals learnt to walk and talk all by themselves?

Re:It doesnt matter what China does (1)

ocelotbob (173602) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167030)

No, because humans should be able to express their opinions openly, regardless of what they are. Otherwise, you aren't free. How does someone peacefully expressing their beliefs affect you?

Wond'ring aloud... (5, Interesting)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166828)


> The related departments have closed 1,278 illegal web sites and 114 sites promoting gambling, superstitious activities and cult propaganda

Was Slashdot listed under "superstitious activities", or "cult propaganda"?

what is considered illegal? (1)

stormi (837687) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166870)

the problem isn't that they're closing websites for their own 'legitimate' resaons (although what is wrong w/ a good cult every now and then?) but i'd like to know what qualifies as illegal. what do they consider cult-like and superstitious..... that's what scares me. do really intelligent sites get blocked off? evolution was a nasty cult superstition, remember....

Drop in reports. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166918)

"With the closures, the on-line reports on the illegal web sites have declined to 17.4 percent from 67 percent when the crackdown began." ... 17.4 percent of what? Most of the reports are now on non-illegal sites?

Yes that right (5, Insightful)

asciiwhite (679872) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166931)

In Communist China

You kill the INTERNET


Yes and in Constitution Repubic USA.

FBI agents raided the Texas-based host of Arabic Web sites [slashdot.org]

and

Al-Jazeera shutdown [guardian.co.uk]

When the Chinese government close down what they consider propaganda, it's these evil communists trying to hinder freedom of speech.

When the American government close down what they consider propaganda. It's because it's propaganda, and not infringing on freedom of speech.

The difference between Americans and Chinese is they realise they are being screwed, where as Americans dont seem to have a fucking clue...

Re:Yes that right (1)

n0rr1s (768407) | more than 9 years ago | (#11166964)

Yes and in Constitution Repubic USA.

The USA relives its teenage years?

Re:Yes that right (1)

TummyX (84871) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167004)

The difference between Americans and Chinese is they realise they are being screwed, where as Americans dont seem to have a fucking clue...


Funny how you linked to Slashdot, an American site full of Americans who actually agree with you as proof that Americans are stupid.

All that self congratulatory American hating fueled wanking must really bruise your penis.

Re:Yes that right (1)

metricmusic (766303) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167051)

A large portion of slashdot users use firefox too but most internet users don't. What the americans on slashdot agree with what americans in general do.

The immorality of Open Source (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#11166932)

Having read the article thoroughly, this startling news shows the flaws in the brewing Open Source Zeitgeist that is gripping the software community. Have you considered that providing software for free to countries such as China is essentially tacit support for oppressive regimes?

Far-fetched? Think about it: With MySQL, the People's Army will now be able to do multiple queries on their tables of democratic activists in Olog(n) time instead of lengthy searches in card catalogs. The bureaucratic overhead previously allowed activists enough time to flee the country. How about building cheap firewalls so the people can't get the unbiased reporting that CNN provides? Or using Apache to publish lists of Falun Gong people to their police forces instantly? I doubt that never crossed your minds when you were coding away in your parents' basements. Consider putting that little thought in your mental resolv.conf file.

If that does not concern you ( which it probably doesn't, since the slashdot.org paradigm is publishing articles about how not to pay for things ), consider something else. When China eventually goes to war with Taiwan, we want to be able turn their command and control facilities into the computing equivalent of a train-wreck. One of the advantages of Windows never mentioned in the article is the ability of Microsoft to remotely deactivate Windows XP in the case of a national emergency. Thanks to GNU/Lunix, Taiwan will be on a collision course with the mainland in the near future.

Which throws into question Mr. Stallman's motives. A known proponent of socialism, the Chinese government and RMS are natural allies. Could it be a back door to Stallman's dream of an über-Socialist United States? We may never know for sure. Next time you consider contributing to an open source project, ask yourself this question: don't you want to make sure your work isn't used for nefarious purposes? Will you risk having blood on your hands?

Give me access to a Chinese Proxy (1)

jellomizer (103300) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167017)

This would be the perfect job. Searching for porn on the internet and when I went threw all the free stuff I report it to the Chinese officials get $240 for it and continue on. The trick is use an American internet connection and when you find a site check to see if it runs in china then report it. Sure I may be a sell out but that is the American Way right?

can we get them to shut down the spammers? (2, Funny)

m2bord (781676) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167024)

many spamming websites are hosted in china.
while they are turning off the spigot to squelch dissent, can we please get them to turn off the spam too?

Re:can we get them to shut down the spammers? (1)

flokemon (578389) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167056)

That would be down to the large number of open SMTP servers there. I haven't checked lately, but a couple of years ago, most universities/schools in China seemed to have an open SMTP server...

So that's why so many come to Mohegan... (1)

jpellino (202698) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167028)

I had to chuckle when the article mentioned cracking down on gambling and superstitious activities - at least at Mohegan Sun Casino (gambling = gambling, superstition = believing you're going to win at gambling) they have special staff and services and casino floor areas just for Asian gamblers, several dedicated bus lines that run from BOS and NYC Chinatowns whose scheduled stops are a series of Chinese groceries, restaurants and temples in Boston and NYC...

Also, you can get non-.cn sites if you're surfing inside China, right?

Hegemon (2, Insightful)

kir (583) | more than 9 years ago | (#11167033)

I learned a great deal from this book. (Note: By saying this, I'm not pronouncing this book as the bible on China. Don't box me in. Slashdot is good for that.)

An excellent review can be found here [theotokos.org.uk] .

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