. Military Space News .

Chinese leader's sacking exposes party rifts: analysts
by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) March 16, 2012

Hong Kong tycoon backs Tang for chief executive
Hong Kong (AFP) March 16, 2012 - Asia's richest man, Li Ka-shing, on Friday voiced his support for scandal-plagued candidate Henry Tang to become Hong Kong's next leader in this month's "small circle" elections.

The 83-year-old billionaire said he would give his vote to Tang, the southern Chinese city's former Number Two, whose campaign has been marred by controversies that have embarrassed some of his other wealthy backers.

"Henry Tang has experience and has served in the government. It is good for Hong Kong if he is elected," the Hong Kong tycoon, known locally as "Superman" because of his business acumen, said in a statement.

Li denied media reports that his two conglomerates, Cheung Kong Holdings and Hutchison Whampoa, would divest some of their Hong Kong assets should Tang's main rival, Leung Chun-ying, win the March 25 poll.

"I love Hong Kong," said the businessman who was named Asia's richest man by Forbes magazine last week with an estimated wealth of $25.5 billion.

Li's open backing, while not unexpected, is a boost to Tang's flagging fortunes and could help shore up wavering support among the small group of business and professional elites who have the right to vote.

The chief executive election will be held in the form of a vote by a 1,200-member electoral committee packed with pro-Beijing delegates including Li and his eldest son, Victor.

Tang was believed to have the support of the city's business establishment and the central government in Beijing, until his repeated gaffes made him deeply unpopular with the general public.

He began his campaign with a public admission of marital infidelity, repeatedly refused to debate his opponents or release details of his proposals, and blamed his wife for making unauthorised improvements to his luxury home.

Leung, a former government adviser, consistently ranks ahead of Tang in public opinion polls but is reportedly regarded as an unreliable liberal by business leaders.

Hong Kong reverted to Chinese control from British rule in 1997, with a semi-autonomous status that guarantees broad social freedoms under limited democracy.

The sacking of rising star Bo Xilai has bolstered President Hu Jintao's reformist faction and exposed deep divides in the Communist Party ahead of a 10-yearly leadership transition, analysts say.

Bo, famed for his populist "red revival" campaign, was removed as party chief of the southwestern metropolis of Chongqing on Thursday, ending his hopes of joining China's most powerful decision-making body later this year.

Analysts said his removal was a victory for Hu and Premier Wen Jiabao, who favour economic and social reforms in China, while more conservative party members want the state to retain its strong influence.

The demise of Bo, who championed a stronger state role, highlights the intense debate among senior leaders about the direction of the Chinese economy and the pace of reforms many see as essential to prevent a collapse.

"There are discussions going on about what policies should be adopted in what order and in what direction," said David Goodman, a professor of Chinese politics at the University of Sydney.

Willy Lam said Bo's demise was a "victory" for Hu and his supporters, but factional horsetrading in the coming months would determine who was promoted instead of Bo to the Politburo Standing Committee, the apex of political power.

"The power struggle between the Youth League and the princelings has intensified. Bo is a victim of that power struggle," said Lam, a China expert at the Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Hu's Communist Youth League and the 'princelings', elite politicians like Bo whose rise is due partly to their family lineage, are seen as the two dominant factions in the Communist Party.

"At the moment, it can be said that the 'tuan pai' and the more liberal factions have the upper hand," said Jean-Philippe Beja, an expert in Chinese politics at the Ceri-Sciences Po school in Paris, referring to the Youth League.

"And Wang Yang, whose chances of joining the Standing Committee are now even higher."

Wang -- Bo's predecessor in Chongqing and current party chief of the southern province of Guangdong -- is seen as close to Hu, and likely to win a seat on the nine-member Standing Committee when a generational handover of power begins later this year.

Bo had been seen as one of the leading contenders to fill one of the seven seats up for grabs before Thursday's dramatic announcement, the biggest and most public political drama hit China politics in many years.

A day after Bo was sacked, the Communist Party magazine Qiushi, or Seeking Truth, published a speech in which China's likely next leader called for greater unity in the party.

Vice President Xi Jinping, who is expected to take over from Hu as head of the party later this year before succeeding him as president in 2013, did not mention Bo by name.

But he warned the party's authority had been weakened by a "lack of principles" among some members, which analysts said was a criticism of Bo and a warning to others.

Analysts said Bo had alienated liberal reformists in the party with his high-profile crackdown on corruption in Chongqing and a populist Maoist revival campaign that alarmed leaders who had lived through the Cultural Revolution.

Leaders were also unnerved by his charismatic style, which analysts said called into question the absolute power of the party.

Some saw a reference by Wen in his final press conference as premier to the Cultural Revolution -- a decade of chaos launched by Mao Zedong to bring down what he perceived as "capitalist" forces -- as an oblique criticism of Bo.

"What happened under Mao was that individual whim rather party organisation came to rule," said Goodman.

"The Cultural Revolution smacks to many people of a lawlessness and the whims of a single ruler. How does that relate to Bo? He laid himself open to the criticism by going for an open, charismatic (style of) politics.

"People who run the party would prefer it not to be like that."

Related Links
Learn about the Superpowers of the 21st Century at SpaceWar.com
Learn about nuclear weapons doctrine and defense at SpaceWar.com

Get Our Free Newsletters Via Email
Buy Advertising Editorial Enquiries

China's heir apparent calls for Communist Party unity
Beijing (AFP) March 16, 2012 - China's likely next leader has called for greater unity in the ruling Communist Party in a speech published Friday -- a day after the biggest political drama to hit the country in years.

The speech, in which Vice-President Xi Jinping also said the party's authority had been weakened by a "lack of principles" among some members, was made before senior leader Bo Xilai was sacked as Chongqing party secretary.

But analysts said the decision to publish it on Friday in the party magazine Qiushi, or Seeking Truth, was a sign that China's leaders were keen to prevent potentially damaging infighting in the party.

Xi is expected to take over from Hu Jintao at the helm of the Communist Party later this year before becoming China's president in 2013 in a generational handover of power.

"To maintain the party's ideological purity is to guarantee the unity of the party," said Xi, accusing some members of "a lack or principles and corrupt behaviour which is not conducive to the purity of the party".

"Today some people join the party not because they believe in Marxism and want to devote themselves to Socialism with Chinese characteristics... but because becoming a member brings them personal benefits," he added.

"If the thoughts of members and cadres of the party are not pure, their ideas cannot be firm, and their political positions can easily change."

Xi did not mention Bo by name in his speech, delivered to cadets at the Central Party School -- a training ground for future leaders -- on March 1.

But David Goodman, an expert on Chinese politics, said it sent a message that party leaders did not want the kind of open politics that the charismatic and populist Bo was seen as practising.

"What happened under Mao (Zedong) was that individual whim rather party organisation came to rule," said Goodman, professor of Chinese politics at the University of Sydney.

"The Cultural Revolution smacks to many people of a lawlessness and the whims of a single ruler. How does that relate to Bo? He laid himself open to the criticism by going for an open, charismatic (style of) politics."

China announced on Thursday that Bo, a rising star once tipped to reach the very top in the ruling party, had been removed from his post in the southwestern metropolis of Chongqing.

He remains a member of the party's powerful Politburo, but analysts say his political hopes are finished after a scandal involving a key aide who was said to have tried to defect to the United States.


. Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Senior Chinese leader sacked in rare scandal
Beijing (AFP) March 15, 2012
China's ruling Communist Party on Thursday fired Bo Xilai, a charismatic leader famed for pushing a "red revival", in a move that exposes ideological rifts during a generational power handover. In a highly unusual public rebuke, Bo's removal as party chief of the metropolis of Chongqing was announced a day after Premier Wen Jiabao delivered his strongest call yet for political reform in the ... read more

Israel lauds its anti-rocket system

US may disclose missile defence data to Russia

Rafael eyes Iron Dome exports after Gaza

Israel sees Gaza rocket fire as part of Iran threat

Lockheed Martin Upgrades Tactical Tomahawk Weapons Control System for Naval Air Systems Command

Raytheon Wins $77.9 Million US Army Missile Subsystem Support Contract

Raytheon Awarded US Army Contract to Counter Rockets

Pakistan test fires short-range ballistic missile

Drones may be controlled by gestures

US drone strike kills 5 militants in Pakistan: officials

UUAV conducts 7-hour mission

FAA Starts UAS Test Site Selection Process

Northrop Grumman Wins Contract for USAF Command and Control Modernization Program

TacSat-4 Enables Polar Region SatCom Experiment

'See Me' satellites may help ground forces

Boeing and Artel to Provide Commercial Satellite Services to US Government

Arjun tanks to get automatic video tracker

Sweden agrees to ratify cluster bomb ban treaty

New Zealand inducts first NH90 helicopters

Lockheed Martin Receives Sniper Post Production Contract

India hikes defence spending by 17 percent

Eurocopter India on roll

Canada mulls nixing F-35 purchase

US urged to cancel Russia arms deal over Syria

Chinese leader's sacking exposes party rifts: analysts

Commentary: Chaos and anarchy?

Bo Xilai: China's fallen political star

Pacific big enough for all of us, says China

HyperSolar Discloses Development Plan for Breakthrough Renewable Hydrogen and Natural Gas Technology

Molecular graphene heralds new era of 'designer electrons'

Touch of gold improves nanoparticle fuel-cell reactions

The shape of things to come: NIST probes the promise of nanomanufacturing using DNA origami

Memory Foam Mattress Review

Newsletters :: SpaceDaily Express :: SpaceWar Express :: TerraDaily Express :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News


The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2012 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement