- David Gitter, Julia Bowie, Brock Erdahl
Weekly Report 3|35 6.20.2020-6.26.2020
Sun Chunlan conducted an inspection of the response to the recent coronavirus outbreak in Beijing (see Senior Leaders section). The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) and National Supervisory Commission (NSC) announced that Beijing’s discipline inspection and supervisory commissions are conducting an investigation and punishment of Fengtai district officials derelict of anti-epidemic duty (see Party Discipline section).
Sun Chunlan Emphasizes Strictly Carrying Out the “Four Earlies,” Resolutely Guarding Against the Spread of the Epidemic During an Inspection in Beijing
6.23 Politburo member and State Council Vice Premier Sun Chunlan (孙春兰) conducted an inspection of the response to the recent novel coronavirus outbreak in Beijing. According to Sun, the Beijing authorities achieved positive results in controlling the spread of the outbreak, with the situation in Xinfadi market basically under control. That said, the sporadic cases in households and workplaces meant that vigilance must be maintained. Sun emphasized that nucleic acid testing was the first of line of defense for carrying out the requirements of the “four earlies” (四早/early identification, early reporting, early isolation, and early management) and screening for asymptomatic persons.
Politburo member and Beijing Party Secretary Cai Qi (蔡奇) also attended the inspection.
Xi Jinping Issues Important Directives on Emphasizing Drug Control: Insist on Strictly Enforcing Anti-Drug Policy, Fight the People’s War Against Drugs Well, Push Drug Prohibition Work to Continuously Achieve New Results
6.24 People’s Daily published Xi Jinping’s important directives to a 23 June conference for exemplary groups and individuals who contributed to the national narcotics control work. State Councilor and National Narcotics Control Commission Head Zhao Kezhi (赵克志) delivered Xi’s directives at the conference. In his directives, Xi emphasized the dangers of “online” and “offline” drug-related crimes towards society and people’s personal health as well as the necessity of maintaining work on drug control as before. Xi also instructed “Party Committees and governments at all levels” to insist on strict drug policies and progress on improving drug management systems and deepen international cooperation. At the conference, 100 groups and 100 individuals who had contributed to the fight against drugs received commendations. Meanwhile, numerous other parties made speeches as well. The conference was held virtually on video call.
Hu Chunhua Hosts the Third Plenary Meeting of the China International Import Expo Organizing Committee
6.24 Politburo member and Vice Premier Hu Chunhua (胡春华) presided over the third plenary meeting of the China International Import Expo (CIIE) organizing committee in his capacity as the head of the committee. During the meeting, he delivered a speech that emphasized the importance of “firmly implementing General Secretary Xi Jinping’s important instructions” to ensure the CIIE’s success. In the context of the current epidemic, Hu called for response plans to prevent and control outbreaks and for the improvement of urban services. In order to do so, Hu urged each unit to “firmly establish a holistic idea” and to cooperate with other departments; Shanghai, in particular, to strengthen the emergency command system.
Ren Ping: A Farce Beyond Belief
6.24 A significant Ren Ping (任平) commentary criticized “some American politicians” for deflecting responsibility, “passing the buck” and creating “rumors and smears” about the coronavirus pandemic, specifically focusing on several states’ lawsuits seeking reparations from China. The commentary said that while the coronavirus was first reported in China, this did not mean the virus originated in China, and that a pandemic is legally considered an act of God that cannot in itself be the basis for a lawsuit. The commentary said the intentions of politicians behind the lawsuits were to deflect public blame for America’s insufficient handling of the epidemic while also seeking to “smear China in international opinion.” It went on to say that such lawsuits had no factual basis, legal foundation, or international precedent, and that despite America’s pride in “rule of law” as a core value, some politicians used the concept as a tool of American hegemony.
United Front Work
The 13th CPPCC National Committee Standing Committee’s 12th Meeting Concludes Wang Yang Presides and Gives Remarks
6.24 The closing session of the 12th meeting of the 13th Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC) National Committee Standing Committee took place on 24 June with Politburo Standing Committee member and CPPCC National Committee Chairman Wang Yang (汪洋) presiding. Discussions during the meeting revolved around the theme of “Winning the Tough Battle of Poverty Alleviation and Establishing a Long-term Mechanism to Address Relative Poverty.” In his remarks, Wang Yang requested that a systemic approach should be summarized and formed from poverty alleviation work in order to provide a useful reference for future CPPCC work in the new era. Wang also emphasized accelerating the formation of CPPCC work rules and other important systemic mechanisms so as to progressively improve the CPPCC system, increasing examination of important strategic-level study topics, and exploring new methods for CPPCC work in uniting and guiding the people in various sectors. On the matter of Hong Kong, Wang Yang instructed the CPPCC Standing Committee of the Hong Kong SAR to communicate with people from all walks of life in Hong Kong in order to gather strong positive support for defending Hong Kong’s national security and “One Country, Two Systems.”
Beijing Discipline Inspection and Supervisory Commissions Announce Punishment Situation for the Issue of Dereliction of Duty and Responsibility in Fengtai District’s Epidemic Prevention and Control Work
6.24 The Central Commission for Discipline Inspection (CCDI) and National Supervisory Commission (NSC)’s website announced that, on 15 June, Beijing’s discipline inspection and supervisory commissions reported on their preliminary investigation and punishment of Fengtai district officials derelict of anti-epidemic duty, saying an investigative team from the commissions would continue a thorough inquiry. The investigation found that relevant officials failed to maintain adequately strict anti-epidemic work, provide guidance, ensure temperature checks and mask wearing, and manage and report problems, making them “bear major responsibility” for the cluster of cases at the Xinfadi wholesale market. The Beijing Municipal Party Committee ratified the inspection report and carried out the assignment of punishments. The Party official responsible for the market had his internal Party duties revoked and was removed from government post, while two other relevant officials were given a stern warning and demotion.
CCDI and NSC Publish Examples of Six Typical Problems Violating the Spirit of Eight-Point Guideline
6.24 The CCDI and NSC recently published six examples of disciplinary violations from across the country, ranging from more minor offenses, such as misusing an official vehicle, to serious ones, such as providing false statistics or accepting bribes. The CCDI and NSC emphasized that the listed cases took place after the 19th Party Congress, that “some even occurred in the period of epidemic prevention and control,” and that the cases included problems of formalism, bureaucratism, and extravagance. They pointed out that between the epidemic, conclusion of the 13th Five-Year Plan, and goals for a moderately prosperous society and anti-poverty, requirements for cadres’ work styles were particularly high this year. The article emphasized continued party discipline and work against the “four forms” (四风), and specifically called for vigilance against corruption related to the upcoming Dragon Boat Festival and against extravagances
Central Military Commission
Revision of People’s Armed Police Force Law Reaches Completion, Providing a Strong Legal Support for Effectively Carrying Out Responsibilities and Missions
6.20 At the 19th meeting of the 13th NPC Standing Committee, the Committee voted to revise the People’s Armed Police Force Law. The revisions went into effect the next day. The revisions to the law clearly defined the role of the Armed Police Force “to be on duty, handle sudden social safety incidents, prevent and respond to terrorist activities, work as maritime law enforcement, rescue and defense operations and other duties assigned by the Central Military Commission (CMC).” An article written in Xinhua about the change described that “Since adjustments were made to the Armed Police Force’s leadership and command systems, [its] relationship with the government and its public security bureau have undergone large changes.” An NPC Standing Committee Legislative Affairs Commission official described what the revisions clarified from three sides: First, central and local governments above the county level should work with the Armed Police Force to establish mission requirements and coordination mechanisms; Second, once the requirements have been set, mobilize the Armed Police Force to conduct the mission according to law; Lastly, these governments should provide guidance to the Armed Police Force on the aforementioned duties.
Xie Xinping: The Mountains Cannot Impede the River, the Waters Still Rush East--China’s Answer to the Global Defensive Fight Against Pandemic
6.22 PLA Daily published a lengthy nine-part Xie Xinping (解辛平) commentary affirming that the China’s development would not be obstructed by challenges such as the novel coronavirus epidemic and the tensions with the US that the disease exacerbated. The article declared that China would continue to push forward its efforts to comprehensively achieve a moderately prosperous society, continue the tough battle against poverty, continue to adhere to a peaceful path of development, continue to uphold a community of shared future for mankind, and fully display characteristics of a “responsible great power.”
The first section of the article chastised the US for fomenting anti-China sentiment in the aftermath of China’s decisive and successful struggle with the novel coronavirus. According to the article, efforts to discredit China are driven by outdated Cold War mentality and zero-sum games. They only serve to force China into sacrificing its right to develop and swallowing the bitter fruit that damages China’s sovereignty and dignity. The article claimed that this sort of behavior is akin to what China’s experienced in the 19th century. Continuing, the article declared that the reaction of some US politicians is completely born out of insecurity about China’s emergence. Meanwhile, latent lesions in the US such as racial discrimination and economic inequality have only served to accelerate the spread of the novel coronavirus.
The second section of the article emphasized the centrality of the CCP in combating the novel coronavirus and advancing China’s wider progress. The article declared that China is presently in a critical phase where it’s growing stronger and that it will only beset by ever increasing internal and external pressure. Since opening up and reform, the CCP’s role in guiding China through various challenges has become evident and proved that socialism with Chinese characteristics has vitality and superiority--it is the foundational guarantee for the Chinese nation in overcoming difficulties and achieving rejuvenation.
The third section of the article emphasized the CCP’s commitment to the people. It declared that the CCP leadership would continue to implement the anti-poverty campaign despite the negative economic impact of the pandemic, and wrote glowingly of the CCP’s ability to mobilize vast resources and manpower to Wuhan in order to “save every life at all costs” during the height of the epidemic. The struggle with the disease fully displayed China’s power, spirit, and efficiency.
The fourth section of the article criticized the botched US response to the novel coronavirus, placing it in sharp contrast with China’s efforts. The article accused “some US politicians” for caring more about the polls and fluctuations in the stock market than for the lives of ordinary people, and noted the coronavirus’s disproportionate toll on minorities and the poor. On the other hand, the CCP placed the interests of the people above all else, bearing all the costs and treating all patients regardless of gender, age, or economic status.
The fifth section of the article dispelled concerns about the state of the Chinese economy. The article declared that time and time again, the CCP proved its ability to weather economic storms despite predictions of China’s economic collapse. Neither the effects of the coronavirus nor the impact of a “trade war” and “technological war” with the US will impede China’s development.
The sixth section of the article criticized isolationist trends in the US while presenting China as the guardian of globalism. The article accused some US politicians of erecting trade barriers and recklessly fanning populism in a time when the world needs cooperation the most. Furthermore, the article condemned “some US politicians” for shamelessly leveraging the retreat from globalism to target Chinese firms, forcing tens of thousands of global suppliers to “choose sides” and damaging the world market regulations. On the other hand, the article emphatically declared that China’s open doors will continue to widen-- “China is not only a beneficiary [of the open world economy,] but also a contributor.”
The seventh section highlighted China’s active role in combating the novel coronavirus overseas. According to the article, “in these months, it is precisely China that has continuously injected confidence into and coalesced forces around global cooperation...with each sincere and vigorous action by China, the concept of a shared community of shared future for mankind becomes ever popular.”
The eighth section of the article highlights the role of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA). The article accused some US politicians of neglecting to counter the novel coronavirus in favor of building a “new iron curtain” directed at China, and made reference to the US National Defense Strategy’s focus on the return of great power competition, the playing of the “Taiwan card,” and the activities of the US military around China. In light of all these tensions, the article declared “no matter how the external environment changes, shaking mountains may be easy, but shaking the PLA is not!” The article then lists the advancements made by the PLA in its path towards becoming a “strong military with Chinese characteristics.” Moreover, it declared that by following the commands of the Party, the PLA’s outstanding contributions to the novel coronavirus response proved once again that the “People’s army, from beginning to end, has been a heroic military that the Party and the people can rely upon. Lastly, the article highlighted the PLA’s role in combating the novel coronavirus and claimed that these activities displayed the PLA’s assumption of the roles of a major power’s military.
The ninth and final section emphasized the role of young people in the future of the country. It noted the role of young people as the main force on the front line of the epidemic response. On the importance of the younger generation, it declared that “if the youth prosper, then the country prospers, if the youth are strong, then the country is strong,”
In conclusion, the article noted that in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic, the space for hegemonic countries to display their arrogance will decrease, and their efforts to impede China will only result in a “‘siege’ to isolate themselves.” China, it declared, will continue to adhere to the community of shared future for mankind, and in turn, its influence and appeal will deepen.
CMC General Office Publishes “Regulations on the Auditing of Leading Military Cadres with Financial Responsibilities”
6.21 The CMC General Office released new regulations related to the oversight of leading military cadres entitled “Regulations on the Auditing of Leading Military Cadres with Financial Responsibilities.” According to Xinhua, The regulation improves strict oversight and promotes loyal responsible leading cadres through including leading cadres with financial responsibilities into the individuals requiring auditing. The regulation is set to take effect on 1 July.
6.22 Miao Jianming (苗建明) was appointed vice president of the University of the Chinese Academy of Sciences.
6.24 Xi Guohua (奚国华) was appointed deputy secretary of CITIC Group’s party committee.