Bill Clinton spearheading the fight against AIDS in China

I just saw Bill Clinton on the news addressing the AIDS conference in China, and once more I realized just how great a communicator he is, right up there with Ronald Reagan and Tony Blair.

Clinton’s words were dramatic. He said China’s window of opportunity for “stopping AIDS in its tracks” was fast disappearing, but that there still was time.

Most movingly, he brought up to the podium a 21-year-old Chinese man infected with AIDS after a blood transfusion. This was so important, to give a face to AIDS, China’s great taboo. The young man is now an AIDS activist and he addressed the audience. This sort of thing is unprecedented in China.

This conference was momentous in every way. The speakers actually criticized the government’s AIDS policy, a sign that, at least when it comes to talk, China is loosening the reins — a little, and very slowly. (After all, the AIDS problem goes back to the 80s.)

But sadly, not a single high-ranking Chinese official chose to attend the conference despite the ultra-high-profile speakers, including Nobel Prize winner Dr. David Ho, pioneer of the AIDS “cocktail.”

This tells me that, as always, the Party is still not ready or willing to come to grips with AIDS. The messages at this conference were powerful, but it is only the CCP that can turn them into action. As long as they distance themselves from the crisis, the more perilous it will become. They have absolutely no time anymore. They have to act now. This is truly a ticking time bomb.

The Discussion: One Comment

Remember the activists name. Want to bet that we see him arrested in the nexst 24 months?

November 11, 2003 @ 5:04 am | Comment

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