Monday, August 25, 2008

Beijing Olympics Watch: Thousands of Peasants Face Man-Made Drought

SURPRISE. Not really:

THOUSANDS of Chinese farmers face ruin because their water has been cut off to guarantee supplies to the Olympics in Beijing, and officials are now trying to cover up a grotesque scandal of blunders, lies and repression.

In the capital, foreign dignitaries have admired millions of flowers in bloom and lush, well-watered greens around its famous sights. But just 90 minutes south by train, peasants are hacking at the dry earth as their crops wilt, their money runs out and the work of generations gives way to despair, debt and, in a few cases, suicide.

In between these two Chinas stands a cordon of roadblocks and hundreds of security agents deployed to make sure that the one never sees the other.

The water scandal is a parable of what can happen when a demanding global event is awarded to a poor agricultural nation run by a dictatorship; and the irony is that none of it has turned out to be necessary.

. . . About 31,000 people around Baoding are said to have lost their homes or land.

Disgusting. Read the whole thing. More here with a slideshow that should make you cringe.

But haven't I been telling you forever that the shiny face of Olympics-ready Beijing conceals an entire underworld of misery that the CCP big shots don't want you to see? that they feel no qualms about steamrolling over their own people? that the vast populations of invisible peasants are the ones who suffer the most? Besides, man-made disasters are a fine old tradition in Communist China, doncha know?

PS: Hey, Obama, do you still want the US to emulate China in our infrastructure? Wise up.

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