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Nordwestpassage | Indien | Kulturrevolution
Jun 20th, 2016 by Gao

China sets its sights on the Northwest Passage as a potential trade boon (Guardian)

China is looking to exploit the Northwest Passage, the fabled shortcut from the Pacific to the Atlantic, according to state-run media, with the world’s biggest trader in goods publishing a shipping guide to the route.
The seaway north of Canada, which could offer a quicker journey from China to the US east coast than via the Panama Canal or Cape Horn, was sought by European explorers for centuries, including by the doomed Franklin expedition of 1845.
Even now it remains ice-bound for much of the year, but global warming and the retreat of Arctic sea ice are making it more accessible, and Beijing sees it as an opportunity to reshape global trade flows.
China’s maritime safety administration earlier this month published a 356-page, Chinese-language guide including nautical charts and descriptions of ice conditions for the Northwest Passage, said the China Daily newspaper, which is published by the government…
Canada regards the Northwest Passage as part of its internal waters, while some other countries consider it an international strait.
Beijing – which is embroiled in territorial disputes of its own in the South and East China Seas – on Wednesday declined to say where it stood on the issue.

Anna Sawerthal: Indien und China rüsten am Wasser auf (Standard)

Über 3.000 Kilometer fließt der Brahmaputra erst durch China, dann durch Indien. Seit Jahren liefern sich die Länder ein Staudamm-Wettbauen – auf Kosten der Umwelt

Chris Buckley: How the Cultural Revolution Sowed the Seeds of Dissent in China (New York Times)

Guobin Yang is a sociologist at the University of Pennsylvania best known for his research on the internet in China. But in his latest book, “The Red Guard Generation and Political Activism in China,’’ he turns back to examine the upheavals of the 1966-76 Cultural Revolution and the imprint they left on a generation of Chinese who became radicals and Red Guards in the name of Mao Zedong. The book explores the cultural background to the violence of the Cultural Revolution, and how those experiences nurtured dissenting ideas and the cultural experimentation that burst into flower after Mao’s death in 1976. In an interview, Mr. Yang explained how that happened.

Foxconn | Ghana | Nikaraguakanal
Jun 11th, 2013 by Gao

Rutvica Andrijašević, Devi Sacchetto: China may be far away but Foxconn is on our doorstep (Open Democracy)

Drawing on support from permissive governments, multinational manufacturer Foxconn has set up shop in Central Europe. Yet the transitory nature of the many migrant workers employed in these factories will have serious consequences for the future of labour in Europe.

Jonathan Kaiman, Afua Hirsch: Ghana arrests 168 Chinese nationals in illegal mining crackdown (Guardian)

The arrests follow a series of pit collapses in which dozens of Ghanaian illegal miners have died, raising concern about the prevalence of the practice in Africa’s second-largest gold producer after South Africa. … The South China Morning Post estimates that more than 50,000 Chinese goldminers have been to Ghana since 2005, two-thirds of them from Shanglin, an impoverished county in southern Guangxi province where news of the gold rush spread by word of mouth.

Jonathan Watts: Nicaragua gives Chinese firm contract to build alternative to Panama Canal (Guardian)

Nicaragua has awarded a Chinese company a 100-year concession to build an alternative to the Panama Canal, in a step that looks set to have profound geopolitical ramifications. The … project … will reinforce Beijing’s growing influence on global trade and weaken US dominance over the key shipping route between the Pacific and Atlantic oceans. … Under the initial plans for the project, the government was expected to be the majority shareholder, with construction taking 10 years and the first ship passing through the canal within six years. It is unclear if this is still the case.

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