Saturday, June 19, 2010

Official photo of Russel Norman, Co-leader of ...Image via Wikipedia
Brutal truth behind China's pleasant smiles and New Zealand lawmaker finds out the hard way ...

"Russel Norman has done us all a favour. He got roughed up for flying the Tibetan flag in front of he visiting Chinese vice-president, but he leaves us an image and a symbol of great value. He showed the real face of the Chinese police state, not the smiling one it wears at cocktail parties and diplomatic ceremonies. The goons who pushed and shoved him and tore the flag out of his hands also tore off China's mask. The Chinese state oppresses not only the Tibetans but its own people. It does to protesters what it did, astonishingly, to an elected MP in a foreign land: trampled on his rights and treated him with brickfaced contempt. And all in front of TV cameras. This will remain as aa glowing reminder of brutal truths and as a counterpoint to the vapidities of official ritual. Vice-President Xi raises his wine glass and gives a pleasant smile. He shakes hands with John key, carefully angled for the cameras. He has a pleasant talk with Phil Goff, another "great friend" of China. Inside the gilded halls,Xi is surrounded by fawning smiles. Outside, his guards smear our sovereignty and spit on on our democratic values.

Everybody knows, of course,that New Zealand needs China's money. Politicians of both main parties have worked for years to win a free-trade deal with the emerging Chineses super-state. Without China as a market, New Zealand would be much poorer than it is. Without the growing Chinese markets in future,New Zealand's economic prospects would be much dimmer. New Zealand cannot restrict its trade to democracies. We must sell  in the real world, which contains more despots than elected leaders. And this presents a problem."

The opening paragraphs in the New Zealand Sunday Times editorial of June 20, 2010.

Russell Norman the young co-leader of the New Zealand Greens Party had protested on the grounds of New Zealand's Parliament against Chinese policies regarding Tibet and had waved a Tibetan flag.  He was then manhandled by Chinese security guards and had his flag taken off him and trampled into the ground. Russel Norman is an elected member of New Zealand's Parliament and should not have been physically manhandled. That was offensive and is actually assault under New Zealand law. NZ police provide all official security and protection for visiting dignatories such as the Chinese vice-president and his entourage. His security guards should have remained at his side and not become involved in any fracas. Also under New Zealand law foreign security guards cannot be armed. The NZ Diplomatic Protection Squad provides armed protection for foreigners. These security guards breached New Zealand law and could have been liable for prosecution. Of course they won't and not much will be said by those who govern New Zealand at present. They will bend over backwards not to offend Vice-president Xi, who could become the next president of China. This action offended not only members of New Zealand's parliament, but the New Zealand people who are represented by members of parliament such as Russel Norman.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Tibetan Prayer Flags on the Border of China an...Image via Wikipedia

Roughed up NZ MP plans to complain for being assaulted by Chinese security in NZ..

From Pete's Kiwi Watch comes this story:

Roughed up New Zealand MP plans to complain - he was assaulted by Chinese security...

Parliament's Speaker will receive complaint from Green MP Russel Norman, who was roughed up by Chinese security as he held Tibet protest

Green MP Russel Norman plans to lay a complaint with Parliament's Speaker after he was roughed up by the Chinese Vice President's security officers.

The party co-leader was waving a Tibetan flag outside Parliament as Vice President Xi Jinping arrived. He was then manhandled by members of Mr Xi's entourage.

Political editor Barry Soper, who witnessed the scene, says the security contingent was very rough with Mr Norman and he describes the incident as "quite extraordinary.

"Chinese security and there are very large numbers of them, roughed (Mr Norman) up in a way that I've never seen a member of Parliament treated. He had the Tibetan flag ripped from him and trampled on by the Chinese security. He was prevented from getting anywhere near the vice president.

"If somebody does want to wave a Tibetan flag, which is clearly offensive to the Chinese and with the flag went Russel Norman chanting 'freedom for Tibet', well, we live in a democracy and should be able to express our views in the way Russel Norman did."

Mr Soper says Mr Norman can probably expect to receive similar treatment if he waves a Tibetan flag in front of the vice-president again.

Do you expect John Key to put a complaint in to the Chinese? Don't be funny! Seriously the Chinese security need to keep their hands to themselves while on NZ soil or water. Their job was to protect the Chinese dignatory. Any New Zealander is quite free to wave a Tibetan flag here in NZ - NZ is a free democratic state that will not be intimidated by the Chinese regardless of any free trade agreements, John Key. I would wave one myself! The Chinese invaded Tibet in the early 50's. Long live Tibet!

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The touchdown jesus in Monroe, OhioImage via Wikipedia
Jesus was  struck by lightning...

A six-storey-tall statue of Jesus Christ with his arms raised along a highway was struck by lightning in a thunderstorm Monday night and burned to the ground, police said.

The "King of Kings" statue, one of southwest Ohio's most familiar landmarks, had stood since 2004 at the evangelical Solid Rock Church along Interstate 75 in Monroe, just north of Cincinnati.

The sculpture, nearly 19 metres tall and 12m wide at the base, showed Jesus from the torso up and was nicknamed Touchdown Jesus because of the way the arms were raised, similar to a referee signaling a touchdown in a game of football.

It was made of plastic foam and fibreglass over a steel frame, which is all that remained early Tuesday.

The fire spread from the statue to an adjacent amphitheatre but was confined to the attic area, and no one was injured, police Chief Mark Neu said.

Travelers on Interstate 75 often were startled to come upon the huge statue by the roadside, but many said America needs more symbols like it.

So many people stopped at the church campus that church officials had to build a walkway to accommodate them.

The 4000-member, nondenominational church was founded by former horse trader Lawrence Bishop and his wife. Bishop said in 2004 he was trying to help people, not impress them, with the statue.

He said his wife proposed the Jesus figure as a beacon of hope and salvation and they spent about $250,000 to finance it.


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