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老赵为何如此效忠政府?
Why Mr. Zhao is so loyal to the government?



尽管自己的房子在几天前被村长的推土机夷为平地,且第二个孩子因为没有出生证而被当地学校拒之门外,但老赵内心仍充满爱国激情。他会放下唯一挣钱的机会而加入当地打砸韩国车的行列,以响应政府打击报复韩国的行动号召。
 
Even though his home was flattened by the village head’s bulldozer a few days ago and that his second child, without a birth certificate, has been rejected by the local school, Mr. Zhao was zealously patriotic. He would forgo his daily job – the only source of his income --and join a local group to smash Korean cars, in responding to the government’s initiative to retaliate South Korea. 


中国政府的号召激发了包括落后村民在内的老百姓的积极响应,并掀起波澜壮阔的爱国运动,而这一在微信上广泛流传的段子便是对这种激情的讽刺写照。美国与韩国就部署萨德导弹防御系统达成协议让北京大为光火,为此中国政府发起全国性的抵制运动以对韩国进行文化和经济制裁,其中包括呼吁民众抵制韩国的核心企业产品和娱乐节目,并限制进口韩国的汽车和手机等。

The short story widely circulated on WeChat has cast in harsh light on Beijing’s agenda that has elicited quick reactions from the public – including the marginalized villagers.  Irritated by Washington’s agreement with Seoul to deploy a missile shield system THAAD, Beijing has waged a national wide war to sanction South Korea. It has appealed to its citizens to boycott South Korea’s core business and entertainment products and to curb the imports of its cars and cellphones.


为抵制与韩国国防部签署换地协议的乐天集团,中国国家媒体亦号召国民停止购买乐天旗下的韩国产品。中国社交媒体随即趁势掀起了大规模的抵制乐天浪潮,呼吁用户停止光顾乐天商超的帖子蜂拥而至,其中有些帖子甚至偏激地要求将抗议抵制活动持续十年之久。转眼间,所有乐天商品遭超市和商店全线下架,该公司网站也因遭到攻击而陷入瘫痪。此外,近3000名爱国激情爆棚的中国邮轮游客亦决定拒绝游玩韩国的济州岛,此举被中国政府报刊誉为“爱国行动”。

China state media has urged its citizens to stop buying Korean products from stores of Lotte -- the company made an agreement with South Korea Defence Ministry. China social media has instantly turned the bashing into a viral trend, with a flood of posts calling users not to visit Lotte stores. Some posts even made an extreme demand that the protest lasts a long as a decade. Immediately, all Lotte items have been pulled off from shelves of supermarkets and its stores, and the company’s website has been attacked and suspended. Some 3000 Chinese cruise passengers, putting patriotism above tourism, decided to avoid visiting the South Korean island of Jeju, a move that has earned “a patriotic action” praise from the government tabloid.


实际上,韩国并不是中国老百姓在近年来公开打击的第一个目标。随着中国欲展示其国际影响力的雄心不断高涨,中国不断向周边国家和地区展现其强大军事实力,同时也激起了民众对日本、越南和菲律宾等国的怒火。在2012年,一些愤怒的中国民众就曾走上街头打砸丰田车以及日资商店和超市。

South Korea wasn’t the first target in China’s public retaliation efforts in recent years. Amid a growing desire of Beijing to exert foreign influence, China has increasingly flexed its military muscles over its surrounding countries and regions, fueling its citizens ‘anger towards Japanese, Vietnamese, and Philippines. In 2012, angry citizens took to the streets, attacking Toyotas and Japanese-branded shopping malls and supermarkets.

 
中国政府似乎与其国民紧紧拧成了一股绳,全民上下团结一致对外,以向任何一挫伤其民族自豪感的外国势力实施强有力的报复。在世界各国政府都面临公众信任危机之际,中国政府竟能在如此强有力的民众支持下顺利推进其政治议程,这简直令人刮目相看。

It appears that the Chinese government and its citizens have formed a strong bond that empowers the nation to retaliate any foreign forces deemed to have hurt its national pride. Amid a growing public trust crisis that governments across the globe are facing, Beijing have done an incredible job in gaining public support to push through its agenda. 


在包括加拿大,美国和欧盟国家在内的西方国家里,民众对政府、政客以及民选领导人常常是采取消极,不信任之态度。国民对政府解决国家问题的能力越来越缺乏信心,并感到政党领袖高高再挂,与大众距离甚远。最近进行的一项对40个国家的政府调查发现,他们都感到在互联网时代渐渐丧失了公众信任及对通讯领域的掌控。

In Western countries – including Canada, US, and European countries, public is deeply cynical about the government, the politics, and the nation’s elected leaders. Citizens increasingly lack faith in its government’s ability to solve national problems, complaining that the political elites are out of reach.  In a recent study spanning 40 countries, it has found that governments feel to have lost grip on public trust and communications in the internet era.


但是,与此大趋势相驳, 中国政府却是国际上少数几个仍获得国民的信任和忠诚的政府之一。通过极其高效的宣传机器,中国政府凭借着扩张的的自信和膨胀的野心不断向全民灌输所谓“中国梦”及“富国强军”的理念,大力倡导其“中国世纪”已经到来的预言。

But bucking this trend is the Chinese government, its tight grip on its citizens and its heavy censorship on social media. Running the most efficient propaganda operation in the world, Beijing has taken a new level of assertiveness, confidence, and ambition, with a critical mandate to advocate the “Chinese Dream” and its “rich country and a strong military”, and to promote the idea that it is indeed a “China’s Century”.


毫无疑问,通过这一强大的宣传工具,中国政府让老百姓紧紧团结在其周围,并使他们树立起了对政府的盲目信任和廉价忠诚。显然,这一鼓动工作已经深入人心,并取得非常显著的成效,就连老赵这种遭其人权政策迫害的村民们都不惜牺牲自我而积极响应号召,为其效力而在所不辞。

Unsurprisingly, Beijing’s powerful propaganda machine has successfully pulled citizens in its orbit, inspiring them to establish a naïve loyalty and build a blind faith towards their government. The operation has been functioning remarkably well that even villagers like Zhao -- who have been victimized by Beijing’s human rights violations -- are willing to sacrifice their personal lives to answer any calls from their government.  
 

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