Sun Feb 21st, 2010 at 06:55:02 AM EST
These following two paragraphs are from
what is left of Isaac Stone Fish's February 17 Newsweek article "Charity Case -- Whether they like it or not, China has been good for Tibet" [as it was translated into Chinese and published in 参考消息 Cānkǎo Xiāoxí, China's answer to Courrier International]:
|对西藏来说，中国是合适的 | 美国《新闻周刊》 2月17日文章|
艾萨克 斯通 菲什
|China Has Been Good For Tibet | U.S. Newsweek (February 17)|
Isaac Stone Fish
|原题：慈善实例||Original Title: Charity Case|
明显：对于西藏来说，中国是合适的。||President Obama's controversial meeting with the Dalai Lama will take place this week. But most Americans still see the Dalai Lama as the representative of a people oppressed by Chinese rule. Despite China's many blunders in Tibet, it has erected a booming economy there. Looking at growth, standard of living, infrastructure, and GDP, one thing is clear: China has been good for Tibet.|
|美国凯斯--西部保留地大学西藏研究中心负责人梅尔文？戈尔茨坦说："我为这些村子花的钱感到吃惊。"戈尔茨坦发现，"医疗保险计划变得更好了，银行贷款更容易拿到了，小学和中学教育免费，水电供应也在改善"。在改善后的学校，学生们学习汉语普通话，藏人因此可以到西藏政府办公室去工作，也有机会在全中国的公司工作。||"I was amazed at the amount of money actually being spent in these villages," said Melvyn Goldstein, codirector of the Center for Research on Tibet at Case Western Reserve University. Goldstein found that "health-insurance plans are getting better, bank loans are now more accessible, schooling is free for primary school and middle school, and access to electricity and water is improving." At the improved schools, students learn Mandarin, which gives Tibetans access to work opportunities in government offices in Tibet and in companies throughout China.|
Bruce Humes does a nice job of highlighting which parts of Fish's original article were
censored [abridged] and which parts of the 参考消息 Cānkǎo Xiāoxí version were inserted by the Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda [conscientious editors]. For example, below you can see how the above two paragraphs were edited:
Bruce Humes » Blog Archive » Newsweek via Cankao Xiaoxi: The Tibetans Have Never Had it So Good
|President Obama's controversial meeting with the Dalai Lama [will take place] this week has already infuriated China and stirred up Tibet advocates who thought it should have come sooner. China says Tibet is part of its territory, and that the meeting represents an unwanted intrusion into its domestic affairs. But most Americans still see the Dalai Lama as the representative of a people oppressed by Chinese rule. Tibetans feel chafed by the restrictions on their political and religious freedoms; many are dissatisfied with Chinese rule, and this has led to widespread rioting over the past few years. They want self-determination; fair enough. But that seems to be the only story about Tibet that is ever told. The other story is that, for [Despite] China's many blunders in [Tibet] mountainous region, it has erected a booming economy there. Looking at growth, standard of living, infrastructure, and GDP, one thing is clear: China has been good for Tibet.|
|"I was amazed at the amount of money actually being spent in these villages," said Melvyn Goldstein, codirector of the Center for Research on Tibet at Case Western Reserve University. Through extensive rural fieldwork in the TAR, Goldstein found that "health-insurance plans are getting better, bank loans are now more accessible, schooling is free for primary school and middle school, and access to electricity and water is improving." At the improved schools, students learn Mandarin, which gives Tibetans access to work opportunities in government offices in Tibet and in companies throughout China.|
Go to Humes's link see the entire article in Fish's original compared to the Cānkǎo Xiāoxí version. It's disheartening to see what is cut out. And in some cases puzzling. For example, although the following paragraph offers evidence of constructive Communist Party attention to Tibet (with a plug for "a healthy eco-environment", to boot), it was removed entirely:
|Last month, President Hu Jintao held the Communist Party's fifth Tibet planning conference, the first since 2001, to strategize on the upcoming years. He said that Tibetan rural income will likely match China's average by 2020. And he stressed the need for Tibet, beset by the "special contradiction" of the Dalai Lama, to develop using the "combination of economic growth, well-off life, a healthy eco-environment, and social stability and progress."|
Worth reading as well is Humes's background remarks about 参考消息 Cānkǎo Xiāoxí:
The World according to Cankao Xiaoxi by Bruce Humes | Danwei.org
Cankao Xiaoxi (参考消息) is in fact a much-respected Chinese-language digest of the world press with a long history. Published nowadays for the public by Xinhua News Agency, until the 1980s the only eyeballs that scanned these pages were those of elite party cadres who received this sensitive, "internal-circulation" publication featuring reportage and opinion from the outside world. Claimed daily circulation exceeds several million. As a publishing consultant, I generally take such figures with several grains of salt, but in just about every city I've been throughout China, Cankao Xiaoxi is on the newsstand early in the morning, and often sold out by early afternoon.
Unlike many other publications in China, Cankao Xiaoxi implements strict standards for translation: Virtually no English is used, no content is added, and politically incorrect terms - such as the Republic of China (中华民国) - are translated directly into the Chinese if they appear as such in the original. Such practices make for a good read and have endowed the brandname with an air of authoritativeness over the years.
But there are three areas in which Cankao Xiaoxi takes liberties: It runs its own headlines, creates its own captions, and - this is the killer - deletes references deemed unbecoming to China's image.
As a minor end-note: In Hume's post, Fish's final paragraph, though decimated, nevertheless preserves a single sentence:
|Tibetans have benefited -- a fact Obama might keep in mind when he meets the Dalai Lama.|
But I can't find even that sentence in 参考消息 Cānkǎo Xiāoxí's online version. Maybe it was removed afterwards, or maybe Hume was working from the paper copy of the journal which might have had a slightly different version than the online version.
[UPDATE Cross-posted at DailyKos.com]