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How China’s formidable cyber capabilities sparked a tech cold war
July 22, 2019 | | Financial Times | Geoff Dyer.

Chinese Spies: From Chairman Mao to Xi Jinping, by Roger Faligot, translated by Natasha Lehrer, Hurst, RRP£30, 568 pages.... the mercantilist mindset of the US administration and partly in the insecurities of a section of Washington’s foreign policy establishment, prompting the search for new demons to slay. But it is also an inevitable reaction to the aggressive intelligence and surveillance capabilities that China has installed.
Roger Faligot’s history of spying in the Chinese Communist party highlights the turbocharged growth in the nation’s intelligence services......Spying has been baked into the fabric of the Chinese Communist party since its earliest days......Faligot’s subject is the Chinese Communist party and its efforts to develop what he describes as the largest intelligence service in the world. He places particular emphasis on the state security ministry, known as the Guoanbu, the biggest of the non-military spying agencies......The central figure was Zhou Enlai, China’s premier from 1949 to 1976. Zhou’s early career is known more for the diplomatic skills he demonstrated during the second world war but he also developed a taste for clandestine activities as a young man in his twenties in Paris.
......Returning to China in 1928 after a spell at the GRU spy school in the Lenin Hills outside Moscow, Zhou established a series of intelligence networks which, Faligot writes, have a “direct link” with “today’s service”......Two themes, in particular, come through. First, right from the outset, China’s spy agencies latched on to the internet — both as a powerful weapon and as a tool for greater social control....As well as overseas intrusion, the intelligence agencies have been “given a mission to organise a vast system of control of the Chinese population”. Many of the new techniques were first developed in Xinjiang and Tibet, including the compulsory registration of internet users, which has been used to root out cyber-dissidents. ....The second theme is the way that these capabilities have now been harnessed by one all-powerful leader............Xi has conducted a sweeping anti-corruption drive whose biggest scalp was Zhou Yongkang, who in 2015 became the first ever former member of the politburo standing committee to be convicted of serious crimes and sentenced to life in prison. Arresting Zhou allowed Xi to take out a political rival. But it also allowed him to orchestrate a putsch of the security services, which Zhou had been in charge of in the previous administration. During his period as China’s effective spy chief, Zhou had set up what Faligot calls a “parallel diplomacy service” and had also been snooping on all the other senior Chinese leaders. The purge of “the old Zhou Yongkang system,” Faligot concludes, allowed Xi “to retake control of the CCP, the PLA and the secret services.”
books  book_reviews  China  Chinese_Communist_Party  Cold_War  cyberattacks  cyber_warfare  Guoanbu  new_tech_Cold_War  security_&_intelligence  Tibet  turbocharge  U.S.-China_relations  Xi_Jinping 
25 days ago by jerryking
How WeChat Conquered Tibet
"WeChat, the world’s largest standalone messaging app, is constantly refining their technology to monitor — and censor — content from its more than 963 million monthly active users. But still, 70 percent of Tibetans in the diaspora use the application. Overseas Tibetans or anyone with family or relationships associated with Tibet tend to download the messaging app to stay in contact, since other global social media applications are banned in the region. Tibetans who want to communicate with their relatives have no other choice but to use this means of contact...Through my research, I found that some of the key factors behind growing paranoia and possible divisions in the Tibetan movement are lies and unverified rumors created by many fake accounts on popular social media outlets like WeChat and Facebook. These platforms raise concerns surrounding the dissemination of false or misleading information, as they lack the gatekeeping and verification processes that traditional media have. The convergence of traditional and new media as a means of information dissemination has raised questions regarding where to draw the line between regulation and censorship, and how to balance freedom of expression with inflammatory and provocative speech. While enjoying the benefits of WeChat, we should be wary of the negative effects. In short, while WeChat has become and continues to be a popular medium for social interaction and bridging private and public lives, the safety of the application and security of shared content remains a legitimate concern for everyone." - Tenzin Dalha for The Diplomat
otf  tibet  china  asia  wechat  censorship  awareness  surveillance 
4 weeks ago by dmcdev
Tea Tuesdays: Butter Up That Tea, Tibetan-Style : The Salt : NPR
Yak butter tea is often referred to as the national drink of Dhorje's homeland, Tibet. Tibetans drink it all day long — up to 60 cups a day, it's said — though they're not the only ones who enjoy it: It's consumed in countries throughout the Himalayas.
tea  butter  yakbuttertea  Tibet  drinks  NRP  2019 
4 weeks ago by inspiral
Opinion: Ottawa seems to be out of ideas on devising a new kind of China policy
JUNE 19, 2019 | The Globe and Mail | by DAVID MULRONEY. SPECIAL TO THE GLOBE AND
David Mulroney was Canada’s ambassador to China from 2009 to 2012.

A new approach is needed to managing Canada’s relationship with China – one that’s alive to Canadian vulnerabilities as well as our national interests.....There are many smart reasons for engaging China, but flattering the leadership in Beijing isn’t one of them. Good ideas emerge from hard thinking about long-term Canadian interests. Even summoning the vision and courage to think strategically would mark a significant improvement over our current China policy, which appears to be conjured up from equal measures of wishful thinking and parliamentary politics.....Thinking strategically requires asking why China is being so assertive, (e.g. building a blue-water navy, militarizing rocks and shoals in the South China Sea)....These are part of a patient and persistent Chinese effort to push the U.S. out of Asia and achieve regional dominance – and that is clearly not in Canada’s interest. The U.S.’s commitment to Asia enabled regional balance and, with it, peace and rising prosperity. More to the point, a China-dominated Asia would hardly be friendly to Canadian values and ideas.
(1) Abandon our current policy of “comprehensive engagement” – the notion that we should say yes to just about anything related to China. Cancel the commitment of $256-million over five years to the Beijing-based Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.
(2) reassessment of our relationship with Taiwan.
(3) move from talking about human rights in China to actually doing something about them. We normally count on the United Nations to address major human-rights abuses, but the UN, anxious to avoid offending Beijing, has been silent in the face of the government’s mass detention of Uyghurs and its brutal assault on their religion, language and culture.
(4) do the same for China’s beleaguered Tibetans. Canada’s commitment would be a welcome signal to both communities that they haven’t been forgotten.
(5) investment at home, too. Put more money into domestic security, combatting Chinese interference more effectively. And we shouldn’t be afraid to name and shame perpetrators when we discover examples of meddling; Beijing won’t like it, but it will also probably tone down its more egregious activities.
(6) invest in China competence in Ottawa, where the commodity is alarmingly scarce. Future leaders in key departments, in the security agencies and in the Canadian Forces need to be far more aware of how China works and how it thinks. This isn’t about agreeing with China, but about understanding it – something that we’re having a hard time doing at present. To do so, Ottawa should create a special “China School” that not only offers language training but also exposes top people across government to the best thinking on China’s politics, economics and security issues.
AIIB  Beijing  bootcamps  Canada  Canada-China_relations  Canadian_Forces  China  China_rising  DND  human_rights  ideas  idea_generation  maritime  national_interests  op-ed  policymaking  policymakers  political_staffers  reinvention  security_&_intelligence  South_China_Sea  strategic_thinking  Taiwan  Tibet  Uyghurs  values  wishful_thinking 
8 weeks ago by jerryking
Apple Censoring Tibetan Information in China
Working in collaboration with OTF-supported GreatFire on their Apple App Store Censorship tool https://www.opentech.fund/results/supported-projects/app-store-censorship/ TibCERT (Tibetan Computer Emergency Readiness Team) identified "29 popular Tibetan mobile applications [censored] in the China App Store. Tibetan-themed apps dealing with news, religious study, tourism, and even games are being censored by Apple...TibCERT analyzed 119, Tibetan-themed, iOS apps...By looking at which apps have been censored, it is possible to identify some of the censorship criteria. If the name of the app contains the Dalai Lama’s name then the app is likely to be censored. All media apps are censored. The only game that has been censored prominently features the Tibetan National Flag in its logo."

Among the censored apps are those from the Dalai Lama, Radio Free Asia, Tibet Times, Tibet.net (website of the Central Tibetan Administration), VOA Tibetan, and Voice of Tibet. See the full list in the article, or explore the app store censorship tool here. https://applecensorship.com/
otf  china  asia  tibet  censorship  apple  gfw 
11 weeks ago by dmcdev
[pdf] Aris Lecture - Magic, Healing and Ethics in Tibetan Buddhism - Sam van Schaik
Magic, Healing and Ethics in Tibetan Buddhism
Sam van Schaik (The British Library)
Aris Lecture in Tibetan and Himalayan Studies
Wolfson College, Oxford, 16 November 2018

Podcast: * Published: 12/6/18 08:12:25
* Episode Download link (43 MB): http://media.podcasts.ox.ac.uk/wolf/general/2018-12-07-wolf-vanschaik.mp3

Tibet  magic  Buddhism  history  WolfsonCollegeOxford 
april 2019 by pierredv
early Tibet | Notes, thoughts and fragments of research on the history of Tibet
via Wolfson lecture podcast "Magic, Healing, and Ethics in Tibetan Buddhism" Dec 2018
Tibet  Buddhism  magic  history  WolfsonCollegeOxford  blogs 
april 2019 by pierredv
AWFF 2019: Collaborative documentary Displacement and Resilience explores conflict, migration and exile
"Displacemennt & Resilience": Documentary highlights experience of #women #refugees in Tibet India Philippines Canada Tunisia, from trauma to healing and triumph #FiveMillionFilm ^cr
documentary  refugee  reference  women  PTSD  migration  exile  philippines  tunia  comparison  india  rohingya  tibet  asia  canada  story  film  2019  editing  social  worker  resilience  police  interview 
april 2019 by csrollyson
Why it’s so hard to keep the world focused on Tibet
In 2011, Beijing further tightened its chokehold on the autonomous region under the leadership of new Tibet Communist Party secretary Chen Quanguo (paywall), who implemented a vast array of security measures, including the incarceration and “re-education” of those who had returned from listening to the Dalai Lama’s teachings in India. [...]

“To some extent, China has been very successful in dealing with Tibet,” said Tsering Shakya, an academic at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver. [...]

Draconian restrictions on travel by Tibetans, foreign diplomats and journalists has made getting disseminating information from the region immensely more difficult.

Ever-tightening security has eliminated visible, large-scale displays of protest. The “optics of urgency” spotlighting the Xinjiang situation, such as satellite photos of camps and reporting by journalists on the ground, are missing from the Tibet narrative, wrote Gerald Roche, an anthropologist at La Trobe University in Melbourne. The “slow violence” that characterizes the plight of Tibet today, Roche added, makes it harder to get global attention.
tibet  china 
march 2019 by terry

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