Sino-French Kowtow

As we in Seattle continue to host the inimitable Martin Jacques, author of When China Rules the World, I thought this essay by Pierre Haski at Rue89 about French diminution in the Chinese shadow was particularly apropos.  Assessing the above photo, Haski writes, horrified: C’est la photo qui tue. Sans doute ce « moment décisif » cher à Henri Cartier-Bresson était-il trop tentant pour symboliser la nouvelle … Continue reading Sino-French Kowtow

Le Figaro Reports on French Warming toward Pyongyang

Sebastien Sabetti [in Seoul], “La France tente sa chance à Pyongyang [France Tries its Hand/Takes its Chance with Pyongyang],” Le Figaro, 9 October 2009. [Translation by Adam Cathcart] NORTH KOREA.  How to turn a handicap into an advantage: France is now playing diplomatic poker [coup de poker diplomatique, e.g., taking a diplomatic gamble] with the North Korean issue. Its objective: to catch up, overtaking its own … Continue reading Le Figaro Reports on French Warming toward Pyongyang

Dalai Lama in Paris; A Commentary on Elections and Propaganda

Nearly three weeks has passed since the Dalai Lama stopped in the Paris city mayor’s office for a brief ceremony and photo opportunity, but his visit remains worth commenting upon, since the “incident” was widely discussed in China and fed into several important streams of discourse on Sino-French and Sino-Western relations. Timing of the Visit First, although the CCP press noted that the Dalai Lama … Continue reading Dalai Lama in Paris; A Commentary on Elections and Propaganda

Thoughts on Sino-French Relations from “the Time of Distrust” to Today

One of the more exciting things I get to do as a young academic is travel to the Foreign Ministry Archives in Beijing, there to scout out new sources on China’s relations with the world in previous decades.  And what could be more interesting?  In terms of people-to-people relations, or political/military conflicts, China’s history offers a panorama of change and continuities. So, somewhat more than … Continue reading Thoughts on Sino-French Relations from “the Time of Distrust” to Today

Dalai Lama in Europe

Xinhua is upset: the Dalai Lama is planning to arrive in France from June 6-8 to become an honorary citizen of Paris. While the national government of France has pledged that no federal officials will meet with him, the mayor of Paris is offering the Dalai Lama honorary citizenship (and thus the trip). Here he is in Paris in 2003, giving an interview (the present … Continue reading Dalai Lama in Europe