Chinese People Comment on Hu’s Visit to the US

January 25, 2011 Updated: October 1, 2015

Chinese leader Hu Jintao on the 18th at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland.  (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Chinese leader Hu Jintao on the 18th at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland. (Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Hu Jintao is back in China from his trip to the U.S., and many Chinese wonder if it was worth all the official ballyhoo.

The unofficial version of events, held by critics of the regime in China who don’t hesitate to speak out online under the cloak of anonymity, is that the visit was a waste of tax dollars, an attempt to increase the legitimacy of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) in front of Western governments, and another chance for the leaders to dodge human rights issues.

The Epoch Times here translates some of these more pessimistic domestic voices for the interest of readers.

Yang from Shaanxi believes Hu’s visit to the US will not improve China’s image in the West, saying, “The CCP has been deceiving the western countries for so many years—it suppressed the people in China and works with some countries to sabotage world peace.”

Yang also believes that when meeting with Obama, Hu may give in on the issues between North and South Korea but not on the issue of the yuan’s exchange rate: “If he did, economic problems so big would ensue that they could damage the CCP’s rule.”

Zhang Zilin from The Union of Chinese Nationalists also believes that there is nothing new in Hu’s visit. “It’s mostly going to be about business and Korean issues. There won’t be much about politics in China.”

Li Zhuoxi, an Internet activist, feels that Hu was wasting Chinese taxpayers’ money to stabilize his political position and pushing the US not to talk about human rights issues in China. Li also believes that China and North Korea will eventually “head toward democracy as Tunisia did.”

Xunling from Hong Kong thinks Hu must maintain good economic relations with the US. “First of all, China can be both the US’ sweatshop and its largest creditor. Second, China has to work with the US to win the currency war and to prevent the collapse of its economic bubble, as well as the autocracy built upon it.”

Zhang thinks the meeting will be about the exchange rate of the yuan as well as the situation on the Korean Peninsula. “The CCP does not want the US to form a strong and stable alliance with South Korea and Japan. This will be a big blow to China’s status in northeast Asia.”

“If war breaks out between the two Koreas, China will send the North financial support and weapons but will not mobilize its military. China will also help settle Kim Jong-il’s political regime in exile. But then China will have to face pressure from the US and South Korea and possibly economic sanctions from the US. China needs North Korea as an ally for political and military needs. If North Korea lost the war, there would be irreparable domestic problems for the CCP. Right now, for the CCP, the issue on the Korean Peninsula is more important than that between Taiwan and China,” said Zhang.

Chen also thinks that Hu wants to continue the six-party talks in order to maintain the CCP’s influence. He also wants to alleviate the tension and conflicts between North Korea and the US, Japan, and South Korea. “The CCP wants to keep Kim Jong-il in power and does not want to make it hard for him to rule the country. If Kim’s autocracy was finished, it would make it hard for the CCP to maintain its own in China. Hence the CCP would do anything to keep North Korea the way it is.”

Human Rights in Focus

Chinese people, including human rights activist Zeng Xiamin, have written open letters to President Obama asking him to pressure Hu during the meeting to improve the worsening human rights issue in China.

Dissident Li Hai in Beijing hopes that no one will be under house arrest because of the meeting. “I also hope that the meeting can improve human rights in China in a substantial way instead of reaching superficial agreements.”

When talking about human rights improvement, Yang said that Hu may release a few democratic activists as a symbolic move to make Obama look good. “He will not solve the problem substantially and the problem will continue to worsen in China.”

Xunling believes that there is a delicate relation between the US and China. “China does not like the US to mention human rights, democracy and freedom, but its economy depends on the US. Had China’s holdings of US debt collapsed during the Wall Street crisis, its autocracy built upon the economic bubble would also have collapsed.”

Read the original Chinese article