Beijing mission: Protect Communist party meet

Beijing mission: Protect Communist party meet

SADİ KAYMAZ BEIJING - Hürriyet Daily News
Beijing mission: Protect Communist party meet

A man walks past a wall decoration celebrating the upcoming 18th National Congress of the CPC in Beijing. REUTERS photo

Nowadays everybody in Beijing, the capital of China, is busy facing the ultimate task of security around the convening of the party congress. Police are keeping a sharp lookout and are even mobilized to make sure that toy helicopters are grounded. Street peddlers have left their daily locations empty as the notorious Chenguan urban management officers roam streets.

Thousands of retired woman sit on their wooden stools gossiping with joy but occasionally a serious look appears on their faces when scowling at “strangers.” Their duty is to watch for suspicious activities. All this effort is in preparation for safety surrounding “Shibada,” the 18th party congress of the Communist Party.

Corruption a challenge

The nervousness of the elite underlines the injustices and inequalities present in the society that have built up over decades. Corruption is the biggest challenge facing the new leaders as they assume power.

Crossing Tiananmen Square by taxi, the driver asks me curiously, “Did you know that the new leaders will be elected soon?” I nod my head, saying “Zhidao,” I know. Later on, I ask him what he thinks about the new leaders that will be selected. The driver just says, “We are ‘laobaixing’ [ordinary people], even if we know, what will it change?”

He actually speaks the truth. Politics in China is reserved only for the ruling elite of party members, not for “laobaixing.” In the opaque world of elite politics, nothing is more secretive than the selection of the top leaders who will rule the country for the next 10 years. Even a retired old woman in the park can speak much more about U.S. elections than her soon-to-be-announced leaders such as Zhang Dejiang, Wang Qishan or Li Keqiang.

But not a word can be found in magazines or newspapers suggesting that the next president will be Xi Jinping, let alone the new composition of the seven-man top leadership team, called the Politburo Standing Committee.

Most probably Xi, will be unveiled as the new general secretary. Behind him will be the prime minister, Li.

China set for congress

BEIJING – Agence France-Presse

China’s ruling Communist Party will open its 18th congress in Beijing on Nov. 8, a major political event to appoint new leadership to head China over the next decade.

At this congress, more than 2,000 party delegates from across China will meet in Beijing’s Great Hall of the People in Tiananmen Square, the symbolic center of communist power. The committee will also appoint the elite Politburo Standing Committee, China’s highest decision-making body.