Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Innocent Observation?

The picture of a student's letter to Xi Jinping
Seems like the the topic of the Chinese president's weight is off limits when it comes to the censors.

A nine-year-old schoolboy from Henan wrote an essay suggesting Xi Jinping should shed some pounds and it went viral after his father thought it was amusing and posted a picture of it on his WeChat.

It was soon picked up by the media, but then word came down from the propaganda department to take down any reference to it.

The innocent letter by Niu Ziru was addressed to "Xi Dada", a close term for an older man, and started off talking about the space industry.

"The United States and Russia -- even the European Union and India -- are all planning to land on Mars. Let's hurry up," Niu wrote.

Then he changed the topic to something he thought was a "lighter subject" by saying, "Xi Dada, you could lose some weight. [You] don't have to look as slim as [US President Barack] Obama. It's all right to look like [Russian President Vladimir] Putin."

The Zhengzhou Evening News ran a story on the letter, but then it and other news outlets scrubbed the story from their online editions.

What's wrong with an innocent suggestion as that? He's only concerned for Xi's health...

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