Does anyone else see through the huge public spectacle that China has started to force down the throat of major western countries? Or is it just me?
Yesterday, when I was talking to some local people about the matter, they seemed not to be able to understand what is going on. But then again, they have never been to China, and the only way they know Chinese people is from our local take aways. There is not a lot of cultural, philosophical and sociological knowledge gained from ordering the odd fried duck with fried rice and prawn crackers.
For previous Olympic Games the Olympic Torch - always lit by a ray of Sunlight at Olympia, the Greek home of the ancient games - was carried through the host nation until it arrived on the day of the opening ceremony in the host city.
But this year the Chinese have extended this tour of the torch to a number of foreign countries, in order to highlight the fact that they host the games even more. Not that they were short of cities and towns in their own country to parade the torch through. In fact, if one would move it all around China, it would take about two years to complete the journey.
So why then the foreign legs of the tour? Very simple. It is a deliberate act of superior arrogance and dominance, forcing the western countries, most of which are already completely dependent on China for the manufacturing of most of their consumer goods, to bow before Communist China, the Olympic host. There is a lot of pride in this, as well as deliberate humiliation for the western "paper tigers", as Mao tse-tung used to call them.
What I don't understand is why countries like Britain and France play along with it and threat a little stick with a flame as if it were a head of state! In total there were yesterday more than 2000 uniformed police officers detached for the torch parade through London. And a similarly sad spectacle is expected to take place later today in Paris. How much all this costs the taxpayer, and how much crime those police officers could have prevented if they had been allowed to do their proper duties, can only be estimated. But it is quite substantial.
A protective ring of ten Chinese "flame attendants" (read: special forces police) in light-blue track suits and white baseball caps plus British police officers in fluorescent jackets surrounded the torchbearers closely at all times, with additional uniformed police joining at potential flash points along the route.
This unprecedented close protection of a small object was so massive that the spectators and even people watching the event on TV could often not see the Olympic torch or make out who was actually carrying it. The whole sad show only exposed two things: That there is no freedom in China, and that the UK government prefers the staging of a sick spectacle to please the Chinese dictators to the highlighting of the human rights abuses China commits every day, and especially in Tibet.
Like Hitler used the Olympic Games of 1936 to make the world bow to National Socialism, China now uses the games to make the world bow even deeper before Communist Mercantilism of Chinese fashion. All those - politicians, sports people and anyone else - who close their eyes to the facts or decide that they could not be bothered with details about China, Tibet and human rights as long as they get a few hundred hours of sport on TV this summer, are not only fools, but dangerous fools who contribute to a lot of political, social and economical damage.
People should realise that there is an unbroken tradition of 6000 years in China, which was already a high civilisation at a time when our ancestors still lived in caves and wattle huts. Reading about China and its history might help to understand Chinese ambitions, aspirations and general attitudes. And we should also remember that there is a word called "no" which we should use more often when encountering developments and behaviour we are not happy with. Letting every bully get away with every prank will only create a world ruled by bullies.
The Emerald Islander