Thursday, November 16, 2017

We Must Push Back Before China Silences Us

Authoritarian China has turned its sights on the intellectuals in the West who are shedding light on what the regime and its proxies are doing to our liberal-democratic way of life. Our institutions must step in to ensure journalists and academics can continue to do their work without fear of legal repercussions 

The pressure that authoritarian China and its proxies abroad have exerted on media organizations and academic institutions in the West, and the corroding impact that such activities have had on freedom of expression, were brought to the public’s attention recently thanks to exposés in countries like Australia and New Zealand. 

Exploiting fears of lost business opportunities in the Chinese market or the drying up of Chinese students, several Western institutions in recent months have broken with proud Western traditions of openness by agreeing to self-censor. Publishers have pulled thousands of journal articles from electronic services in China, or stopped the publication of “controversial” books about Chinese influence. And professors have been reluctant to address, or have downright avoided, topics such as Taiwan, Tibet or the Cultural Revolution in the classroom, for fear of becoming targets of angry Chinese students — or the local Chinese consulate. 

Continues here.

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