The Corner

End of An Era

Jiang Zemin, now 78 years old, has stepped down from his last remaining

official post, Chairman of the Central Military Commission. This marks the

end of the Jiang Zemin era in modern Chinese politics. I remarked on the

beginning of that era in a review for NRODT:

“It is clear from the Tiananmen Papers that Jiang Zemin, the current

President of China and General Secretary of the Communist Party, owes his

positions not to any constitutional procedure, but to a voice vote taken on

May 27 1989 by the ‘eight elders’, a cabal of senior party leaders led by

Deng Xiaoping. You will search China’s constitution in vain for any

reference to this body, yet they made all the key decisions leading up to

the June 4th massacre.”

I think the invaluable Pan Hu is going to do a full piece for NRO on Jiang.

I’d just like to record my own “Good riddance!” to this faceless, colorless

Party hack whose only positive achievement was to keep out of the way while

his countrymen engaged in rational economic activity. His negative

achievements, which were numerous, will be fully covered by Pan’s

forthcoming article.


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