Tuesday, November 20, 2007

On Not Having Much Understanding of China

I was chatting with a friend in England currently attending an international meeting on China that includes some Mainland officials and academics. Evidently whenever a non-Chinese participant presses a point that the Chinese Government cannot adequately defend, the Chinese delegation's retort of last resort is "you do not much understanding of China's situatiom" (dui zhongguode qingkuang bu da liaojie). But no further explanation is forthcoming, beyond "you are hurting the feelings of the Chinese people" (that one always make me cringe at such debasement of the nobility of the character of the Chinese people at large). The Chinese Government representatives regard this as the final word on whatever it is.

It seems to me that this retort of last resort is typically employed when the non-Chinese person has in fact too much understanding.

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