Zhou and Bo Hiring: Scapegoat Wanted (Illustration)

April 20, 2012 Updated: September 22, 2015

Illustration: Zhou Yongkang is next on the Chinese regime's purge list, following Bo Xilai.Zhou Yongkang (L), a current member of the Chinese Communist Party’s (CCP’s) ruling Standing Committee and recently ousted Chongqing Party Secretary Bo Xilai (R) have found themselves in a tough situation.

There are several ways a high-ranking cadre in the Chinese Communist Party can find himself on the wrong side of the party’s notorious brutality. One of the most common ways in recent times has been a political opponent within the party uses a cadre’s own crimes to bring him down. Such is the case with Zhou and Bo, who are in the process of being taken down for a long list of crimes, none of which comes even close to the horrors they and their cronies within the party inflicted on 100 million Falun Gong practitioners.

The scale and brutality of the persecution dwarfs any crime the party has committed in recent years and Zhou and Bo were two of its staunchest advocates. Bo has already been brought down and is in the process of being investigated for his crimes. Bo was Zhou’s hand-picked successor to head China’s internal security and legal apparatus, thus ensuring Zhou would not be held to account for his own crimes.

Prior to his purge, Bo (seen with lawsuits under his hand) was demoted to take charge of the problem-prone city of Chongqing in 2007, after serving as China’s well-known Minister of Commerce. His demotion came after his political opponent, current Premier Wen Jiabao argued Bo should not be a prominent face for the party abroad because of numerous lawsuits filed against him from around the world, lawsuits documenting his efforts in persecuting Falun Gong.

A common feature of party purges is opposing factions attack their enemies’ lower-ranked cadres first. Those minions are then offered leniency if they turn on their superiors. This appears to be how Wang Lijun was first used against his old boss Bo. Lijun was Bo’s right-hand man and top cop in Chongqing. Soon after Lijun was taken into custody, Bo was purged, and then put under investigation.

If Bo turns on his highest-ranking ally Zhou, Zhou will only have one place to turn, his old boss and former Party leader Jiang Zemin. But with Zemin rumored to be in a vegetative state, Zhou won’t be able to do much to save himself.

Now all evidence indicates Zhou is next, with several sources speaking out, and with official party newspapers already trumpeting that nobody in the party is above punishment. Unless Zhou can find a scapegoat, he’ll be bearing full responsibility for his crimes. 


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