NYT: Bush whacked by Chinese official

Sure the Chinese government likes to grumble as a group about Bush administration policies, but it’s not all that often we see a Chinese official call out a US President by name. The New York Times this morning reports on a piece in the People’s Daily in which the director of China’s State Bureau of Religious Affairs, Ye Xiaowen, takes the US President out behind the woodshed:

In a front-page article in the overseas edition of The People’s Daily [Ye writes] that Mr. Bushs past references to a ‘crusade’ and to ‘Islamic fascism’ were verbal gaffes that revealed his effort to turn the fight against terrorism into a religious war.

Partly as a result, he said, the United States had lost support for the war in Iraq and had frittered away the good will Americans gained after the 9/11 attacks.

‘The more they oppose terrorism, the more terror they produce,’ Mr. Ye said in the article. ‘How many more troops will they send to die in the meat grinder’ of Iraq.

Mr. Ye wrote that Mr. Bush had effectively ‘hijacked’ one religion, Christianity, to engage in a battle against another one, Islam. That has strengthened Islamic fundamentalists and made the war unwinnable, he contended.

‘Unilateralism and terrorism breed each other, but neither can overcome the other,’ he wrote.

Every word true, but doesn’t being lectured by the Chinese religious affairs bureau on how to preserve international goodwill towards one’s policies measure a blip or three on the old “Irony Meter”? I suppose, as Richard’s post below eloquently and sadly demonstrates, not nearly as much as it once might have.

The Discussion: 11 Comments

Islam should not be considered a religion. It is nothing less than the greatest totalitarian regime the world has ever seen. Muslims are ruining the world because they thirve on ruin. Any fool, for instance who thinks dividing the oil in Iraq will calm the violence is wrong. These savages thrive on violence and caos and destruction. They will never make pece with Israel for instance, because then they would have one less thing to fight over. Islam is a savage religion.

As the Chinese official, he is entitled to his own opinions. The biggers issue is that Bush made a terrible mistake by going into Iraq. We should not be interfacing with these people. There is no military solution to the Iraq problem. The U.S. needs to stay off Muslim soil and away from these savages. They cannot be dealt with in any capacity.

February 3, 2007 @ 10:18 pm | Comment

The most disturbing part about Ye’s tirade is that it was likely inspired by loyalty to a regime that takes great satisfaction in one of their own taking an American leader to task.

Regardless of how many readers are in accord with Ye’s comments, I doubt that the piece was the product of the writer’s own thoughts, knowledge, and experiences. More likely he is a mouthpiece for leaders every bit as contemptible as the one he takes a swing at.

The true irony, of course, is that a Chinese-based edition of an American publication criticising Hu Jintao and company for their lamentable foreign policies, would probably result in the severing of diplomatic ties between the two countries.

February 3, 2007 @ 10:33 pm | Comment

Always a delight to hear from you, Ames. I happen to know lots of Muslims, and the only readon I know them is because they are gracious, intelligent, wonderful people. They are well integrated at home in America where they have shown little to no interest in Al Qaeda’s insanity. The only Muslims to worry about are the ones who believe in the doctrine of Osama Bin Laden and the ones who have been radicalized by colonial blunders in the Mideast like our war in Iraq.

My doctor in California was a Muslim. So was one of my best friends in Phoenix. Making gross generalizations about entire religions is reprehensible. You, sir, are an ass.

February 3, 2007 @ 10:35 pm | Comment

I don’t really have anything to say about the fine example of “seeing the mote in your neighbour’s eye but not the plank in your own” in the article that Richard posted, but I do want to remark that Ames Tiedeman’s comments about Muslims are basically a coarser version of what, ahem, certain “reputable” neocon commentators (i.e. Charles Krauthammer) have been saying.

February 3, 2007 @ 11:48 pm | Comment


It’s probably true that Ye’s toeing the party line here. But if that’s the consensus of the chinese leadership, so be it.


February 4, 2007 @ 10:26 am | Comment

The director of China’s State Bureau of Religious Affairs has about as much credibility as what I just left in the toilet. What a joke. Remember this guy’s job is to “regulate” (read repress) religion in China.

I hear both sides of the Muslim argument. I know there are plenty of moderate Muslims that aren’t savages. They just want to be left alone and practice what they believe in. On the other hand, how can you sit back and do nothing when someone is blowing themselves up in the name of your religion?

February 4, 2007 @ 11:24 am | Comment

“It is not easy to be unfair to Richard Nixon.”
–J. K. Galbraith

And in the same spirit, let us note that the bloodthirsty bastards in Beijing have accomplished something equally difficult.

Bush very early made a disclaimer to the effect that we were not at war with Islam, and he has stuck to it. It has always seemed to me more credible than his obvious lie about not having claimed that Saddam Hussein was connected with 9/11.

His actions belie that? Well, that’s the opinion of some people who despise Bush’s actions, but not others of us. We know, in any case, that war on Saddam Hussein’s secular government was not by any means war on Islam; his fans still don’t understand that, but surely the quacking canards do.

As to the “crusade”: that was really dumb of him and (more relevantly) of his speechwriters and puppet masters. However, he retracted it, and has not repeated it so far as I know. It sounds terribly suspicious, and justifiably so, to Muslims; but the word is so much a part of American Christian language, so constantly used figuratively, that it lost most of its connection to its original meaning — until after 9/11 when all the moral monsters in the US came out of the woodwork to give us stuff like the one at the top of this thread and revive a worse-than-Crusader mentality(*). We can give Bush a pass on this, and still have so-o-o-o much to blame him for.

(*) After all, Saladin and his enemies tended to treat each other with the respect due to warriors.

February 4, 2007 @ 11:38 am | Comment

“Every word true, but doesn’t being lectured by the Chinese religious affairs bureau on how to preserve international goodwill towards one’s policies measure a blip or three on the old “Irony Meter”?”

No more ironic than being indicted by GERMANS for violating international law! (The CIA agenst accused of kidnapping an innocent Deutsche citizen Khaled Masri.)

February 4, 2007 @ 7:27 pm | Comment

Many plainly apparent truth in the guy’s words. However, the more important question is how does the US get out of this mess?

February 4, 2007 @ 10:40 pm | Comment

the more important question is how does the US get out of this mess?


February 6, 2007 @ 1:20 pm | Comment

bukko: i am afraid to see why it is ironic for the germans to charge people with breaking international law. perhaps you’d care to inform us of the current international law breaking of the german govt. i hope you weren’t referring to ww2.

i’d also like to second richard’s comments about muslims. i also have had nothing but positive experiences. there was a recent opinion poll that showed that 40% of young muslims support the implementation of sharia law in the uk. however 85% of muslims feel that they are treated fairly in the uk. whilst i’d prefer it to be 100% and have fewer people support sharia law, i think it shows that there is not a major problem with muslims in the uk in terms of possible violent action

February 6, 2007 @ 8:22 pm | Comment

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