Speech to touch on China scandal
By Lou Kilzer
Published: Wednesday, June 27, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
China expert Thomas Sanderson said he expects the Chinese couple once portrayed as the new version of John and Jackie Kennedy to be tried by the time the Communist nation announces new leadership later this year.
“The leadership needs to make a point that corruption will not be tolerated at the top,” Sanderson, co-director of the Transnational Threats Project at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said of the arrests of former Politburo member Bo Xilai and his wife, Gu Kailai.
The World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh will host a discussion by Sanderson on Bo's situation, Chinese naval tension with the Philippines, a slowing economy and other issues at 6 p.m. on Thursday at Bricolage, 937 Liberty Ave., Downtown.
Sanderson said the Bo scandal has rocked China like few others in recent history, and it occurs amid increasing signs that the powerful Chinese growth engine is slowing.
The Chinese public widely senses corruption in the top reaches of the Communist party, and the “party is sensitive to that perception,” he said.
Communist Party leaders are expected to meet in October or November at the Party Congress to elect a new set of leaders. Xi Jinping is widely expected to replace a retiring Hu Jintao as head of the world's most populous country.
Bo, who was formerly party boss of the mega-city of Chongqing, was forced out of the Politburo after his police chief tried to defect to an American consulate. An ensuing investigation implicated Bo's wife in money laundering and the murder of a British businessman.
Considered one of China's leading politicians, Bo will face trial soon and could face serious consequences if investigators find he played a significant role in Gu's affairs, Sanderson predicted. Before his downfall in March, Bo was talked about as a possible member of China's nine-person Standing Committee, the highest body in the land.
His downfall also showed that Chinese officials are having an increasingly difficult time controlling information, as rumors of Bo's fall and reports of an attempted coup spread rapidly through Chinese microblogs, Sanderson told the Trib.
Money is also increasingly leaving the country, something that has happened in the past at the time of planned leadership changes in China, he said.
Cost to attend Sanderson's talk is $15 for council members and $25 for non-members and includes food and beverages. To register, call 412-281-7970 or visit www.worldpittsburgh.org.
Lou Kilzer is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-380-5620 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Duquesne’s Finest Fathers share breakfast
- Port Vue father, son found dead
- Reception honors longtime library director
- Penguins’ youngsters Samuelsson, Despres show lots of promise
- Lincoln reduces taxes for 2nd year
- Pirates talk to Mets about trading for first baseman Davis
- Steelers face decision on Woodley’s future
- Steelers notebook: Tomlin doesn’t regret picking Bell instead of Lacy
- Steelers’ Brown maturing into elite wide receiver
- Kovacevic: Pitt’s soft-to-tough transition fails
- Ligonier man gets 2 life terms for double slaying