Could the Sichuan Earthquake be a step towards more freedoms in China?

May 27, 2008 at 11:35 pm Leave a comment

It is almost blasphemous to say, but it could be the case that the Sichuan Earthquake might turn into a positive development for China as it did for the USSR, after the Chernobyl disaster.

Many argue (including Gorbachev himself) that the disaster was the final nail in a Soviet system’s coffin.  After seeing how the Soviet authorities dealt with disaster Gorbachev said to himself ‘that’s enough!’  The Glasnost policy followed later to evolve into Perestroika.

The Sichuan Earthquake unleashed the best qualities of the Chinese nation.  Despite the heroic relieve efforts from Central authorities volunteers are organizing themselves in various forms to help the victims of the earthquake.  This indicates that there is a lot of potential for the Chinese civil society on the grass root level.  The simple folk are taking initiative in its own hands.

It is clear that China will never be the same again after the earthquake.  It is hard to believe but possibly the Central Committee will realize that it is time to spread some powers and decision making to the grass root level.

I saw a documentary about the Leningrad Siege during the World War Two.  One of the survivors made a shocking observation by saying that despite all horrors of the famine something was very different in the air.  He said that since they were cut of from the main land Stalin’s Russia they felt that the ‘big brother’ is not watching that vigilantly.  ‘Somehow we felt free’ he concluded.

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Entry filed under: Politics, Totalitarian regimes. Tags: .

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