A photo crying out for a caption, and the death of Peking University


There are two truisms about political events in China:

  1. You only know something really happened when the government denies it.
  2. When really important things happen, state media publish articles about the events that are only one or two sentences long.

Today’s top story on the Global Times — a nationalistic rag that China watchers love to hate but really is worth following because it represents the id of the Communist Party — is about Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit to Beijing. This is the whole article:

Xi meets Japanese PM

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Chinese President Xí Jìnpíng 习近平 met with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe here on Friday.

That photo is crying out for a caption. Global Times’ own caption is actually longer than the article it accompanies: “Chinese President Xi Jinping (R) meets with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe in Beijing, capital of China, Oct. 26, 2018.”

Our previous summaries on Abe’s visit are:

We’ll have a roundup of commentary on Abe’s visit in our SupChina Access newsletter that goes out to subscribers this afternoon, as well as other news, including:

  • Xi Jinping has been sabre rattling: we’ll summarize what he said, and how scholars and journalists are interpreting it.
  • A secret police apparatchik has been put in charge of Peking University, one of the last bastions of free thinking in Xi Jinping’s China.
  • There’s a lot of other interesting stuff happening — my news feeds are jammed up this morning. This is a depressing time to be human being, but one could not ask for more interesting times as a China watcher.

Finally, to get you in the mood for Halloween, on SupChina we have published Vampires and ghosts: A brief history of Chinese horror films.

If you want more news and analysis in your inbox later today, please sign up for Access. Upcoming events are listed below.

—Jeremy Goldkorn and the SupChina team

SupChina events and news

November 2, New York: We’re celebrating the female founders of two of our Sinica Network podcasts: Ying-Ying Lu and Rui Ma of TechBuzz China, and Alice Liu and Joanna Chiu of NüVoices. They will be in Brooklyn, and we’re organizing a networking event from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Westville DUMBO. The first two rounds are free if you RSVP to office@supchina.com.

November 13, New York: Please join us for SupChina’s second monthly women’s networking event with guest speaker Ingrid Yin, Ph.D., cofounder of MayTech Global Investments and a winner of the 2018 SupChina Female Rising Stars Award. Our theme is innovation in medicine and biosciences in China.

We’re also busy preparing to redesign our website. We’d really appreciate it if you could take a quick five-minute survey, which will help our designers understand how best to serve your needs.