China arrested more journalists in 2019 than any other countryPosted by Thomas Bush / December 12, 2019
China has the dubious honor of arresting the most journalists of any country in 2019. China arrested at least 48 journalists, one more than last year. The Committee to Protect Journalists, which published the report accounting for the at least 250 journalists arrested this year. The report noted that, in terms of China, “the number has steadily increased since President Xi Jinping consolidated political control of the country.”
China is walking a fine line between soft autocracy and full autocracy, and this latest report tips the scale towards full autocracy. The social credit system is basically a dystopian nightmare. It turns the population of China into its own Big Brother, with citizens watching over their peers and themselves to ensure social conformity. That’s soft autocracy. But the revelation that the state has been using bird-shaped drones to surreptitiously spy on their citizens. That’s full autocracy. From the article: “The bird-like drones mimic the flapping wings of a real bird using a pair of crank-rockers driven by an electric motor. Each drone has a high-definition camera, GPS antenna, flight control system and data link with satellite communication capability.”
A variation of the “Liberate Hong Kong” chant has been heard some 60 miles to the west of Hong Kong in mainland China. The protestors also said that they were “just like” Hong Kong. This, coupled with the new law that will require new mobile phone users to scan their faces, signals that China may be facing more widespread discontent.
The above law does not mean that users will scan their faces with their phones, but rater that they will need to scan their faces at the shop where they buy the SIM card. The law is designed to prevent people from participating on the web under an anonymous identity.
China is instituting this new law in order to better monitor its citizens, who are exhibiting increasing unrest. It’s part of a wider project of surveillance and control.