A three-way conversation with Anna Chen in the UK, Robbie Barwick in Australia and Barrie Weiss (AKA Barrie V) hosting from China, 16th September 2022.
THE POWER OF PROPAGANDA PART 1: Barrie Weiss in conversation with Anna Chen in the UK and Robbie Barwick of the Australian Citizens Party discussing Australia, the UK, US, mainstream media and Rupert Murdoch.
THE POWER OF PROPAGANDA PART 2: Barrie Weiss in conversation with Anna Chen in the UK and Robbie Barwick of the Australian Citizens Party discussing the UK, US, Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party, Rupert Murdoch, the PNAC.
THE POWER OF PROPAGANDA PART 3: Barrie Weiss in conversation with Anna Chen in the UK and Robbie Barwick of the Australian Citizens Party discussing the Fall of the US Dollar, Empire: Sanity vs Insanity.
Hannah Lowe's new collection of poetry, Old Friends Published by Hercules Editions, May 2022
Introduction written by Anna Chen
A Brief History of the Chinese Who Came to Britain
How many Chinas are there?
In 2022, two Grand Narratives jockey for position as the dominant conventional wisdom which will define China and its global diaspora: the one which demonises its subject, and the other which humanises.
After enduring their “century of humiliation”, China achieves superpower status and finds itself in the headlines for all the wrong reasons. For the past few years, geopolitical stability has tumbled down a Sliding Doors rabbit-hole, splitting the narrative of the peaceful emergence of a multipolar world. One version portrays an existential threat to a western way of life already rapidly approaching its best-by date. The other, which it aims to topple, depicts the dragon reborn, a technological marvel raising 800 million out of poverty, battling the Covid-19 which has already felled western powers, while building beautiful futuristic cities and a new Silk Road.
Into this great sweep of history, Hannah Lowe’s poetry collection, “Old Friends”, provides a timely close-up of some of the characters from the great Chinese migration who’d left the upheavals of a China fragmented by 19th century wars and colonisation and fetched up in Britain. From her father’s Jamaica and Ilford where she grew up to the seafarers and their descendents who settled around the ports of Britain, the Chinese diaspora, established long before many of the nations in which it currently exists, has had to deal with the shadowy identities projected onto it by the same dominant entities who are at it today.
In the beginning … the Chinese were a complete mystery to Europeans.
Early tales from the 13th century Venetian Silk Road explorer Marco Polo, told of the great Kublai Khan, whose Mongol grandfather Genghis conquered a swathe of the Euro-asian landmass, establishing the Mongols as the biggest empire ever. Kublai himself unified China, founding the Yuan empire in 1271 from his home turf around Inner Mongolia and his legendary “stately pleasure dome” of Xanadu in Shangdu.
The first impression breaking through the void was of a magical otherworldly realm of horse warriors, sightings of comets and the exotic treasures that made up the chinoiserie Europeans found irresistible — porcelain, gunpowder, silks, spices and tea — whose desirability would lead to the devastating Opium Wars centuries later.
The Chinese made first contact with Britain in 1685 when the young Jesuit priest Michael Alphonsius Shen Fu-tsung, who was touring Catholic Europe, was warmly welcomed by King James II. Unfamiliar with English, Michael communicated in Latin. Until his arrival, few people even knew which way up to hold a Chinese book so having him catalogue them was a revelation to the gentleman bibliophiles who’d acquired their exotic collections from the Dutch East India Company. King James was so enamoured that he commissioned a portrait which still hangs in the Queen’s gallery today.
However, the first significant number of Chinese to arrive in Britain — seamen brought in by the British East Asia Company during the Napoleonic wars to replace white sailors who were enlisted to fight — enjoyed no such representation in heroic tales, historical works or classical images. These mysterious visitors stayed in the poorest areas around the ports of Cardiff, Liverpool and London’s Limehouse waiting for the next ship to take them home. Not for them the humanising engagement of two worlds who’d just discovered each other. Just a minor role as a reliable source of cheap labour. Gone was the respect shown by James II and, instead, hard commerce and exploitation replaced curiosity and affection.
Even this utilitarian view of the Chinese degenerated further when the British decided they no longer wished to pay the bill in silver bullion for the exotic goods they consumed, (eerily echoed by President Donald Trump’s destructive trade war that’s morphing under Biden into a replay of the Opium Wars carve-up by some of the same imperial powers today.) In 1839, the British army, acting as the military wing of the East Asia Trading Company which had applied Industrial Revolution methods to the mass production of opium in Bengal, forced the drug onto the Chinese at gunpoint, turning an aristocratic vice into a nationwide addiction and called it “trade”.
It was during the ascendency of the imperial narcocapitalists that stories and images emerged to describe not the celestial subjects of earlier wonderment but a debased Yellow Peril, which found its apogee in Sax Rohmer’s villainous Fu Manchu. Stripped of all humanity, they were reduced to a reflection of the monsters in the British id, subhumans deserving of the misery meted out by Empire. It’s an ugly narrative that never really disappeared but simmered away, turning the Chinese and their descendents into a permanent reservoir of scapegoats.
The advent of Chinese seamen expanded the communities of international sailors — including Lascars, Portuguese, French, Germans, Russians and Americans — that huddled around Cardiff, Liverpool and London’s Limehouse. Fewer than 200 Chinese seamen and their families lived in two streets in Limehouse – Pennyfields and Limehouse Causeway, thought to include five shops and a couple of restaurants – but those few residents were reimagined by the yellow press as an invading Yellow Peril horde.
Anti-Chinese hysteria driven by inflammatory newspapers such as the Daily Express and Daily Mail led to riots in London and lynchings in Cardiff during the early 20th century. So contemptuous was the post-WWII government’s policy towards Chinese in Britain that the seamen – who had run the wartime merchant navy in appalling conditions for lower wages than their white counterparts and settled in Liverpool – were quietly expelled and sent back to China, even if they’d started families with local white women. Most of the mixed-race children and their mothers were deceived into believing that they had been abandoned by feckless fathers, and thus they remained ignorant, until relatively recently, of the cruelty meted out in secret.
Surviving wars, occupation, prejudice and massacre, it wouldn’t be until the 1950s and 60s that the Chinese diaspora would make its longest-lasting impact on Britain. By doing what it did so well with food, they transformed fading Italian snack bars into the first of the takeaways, putting a Chinese presence on every High Street.
After a brief Golden Age in the 21st century when British-Chinese relations hearkened back to those earliest days when Shen Futsong was embraced by a British monarch, Yellow Peril monstering is making a comeback as China’s economy draws level with the US.
Amidst the tumult of lurid media fantasies, Lowe’s miniatures of the daily life of some of these early immigrants remind us of the common humanity currently obscured by the new wave of state level sinophobia. It opens a door into a world which will be familiar to some and a revelation to others.
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Hannah Lowe on Twitter: @hannahlowepoet Hercules Editions on Twitter Anna Chen presented the groundbreaking series,Chinese In Britain, which was first broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in 2007.
No Cold War online event Wednesday 25th May 2022 NATO, Ukraine and Russia: war, propaganda and censorship
The West's propaganda modus operandi: a short 21st century timeline of the race to World War III
Anna Chen's No Cold War talk @35m. I was timed out at Point 9 below, so here's the full text of my speech.
When China explored the world in the 15th century and reached as far as East Africa, they traded a bit and brought back a giraffe.
When Europeans landed in the Americas in 1492, they killed and enslaved its native peoples, stole their treasures and gave them smallpox blankets in an early form of biological warfare.
In North America, 100 million native Americans were killed, Black Africans were put through slavery, Jim Crow and imprisonment. The USA was literally built on an ancient Indian burial ground, because that’s what they’d turned it into.
And that’s pretty much been the template ever since.
Europeans sailed beyond their own lands for conquest, glory and fortune. The Chinese mostly stayed at home.
The Chinese invented gunpowder for great firework displays.
Europeans turned gunpowder into murderous weapons of conquest.
If China is the newly rich kid wearing a Rolex who’s wandered on to Mafia turf and is about to be rolled, then America is the 300lb ex-champ who’s geriatric and punch-drunk from all those fights. He’s pinned the kid against a wall, fist in his face, screaming blue murder that the kid’s about to hit him.
Australia and Britain, the Ugly Sisters of the piece, nod enthusiastically and use the opportunity to bury bad news …
like Hard No Deal Brexit fallout,
a wrecked economy,
excess Covid deaths
and a society that’s breaking down.
(There's an argument to be had that Great Britain, with the oldest secret service in the world dating back to Sir Francis Walsingham in Elizabethan times, is the Wicked Stepmother and that the US is the senior Ugly Sister. They fell out regarding control over Iran and its oil fields in the 1950s, and the US stuck to the One China policy. However, GB has at last, after decades, managed to get the US on board for Winston Churchill's balkanisation of China: "I believe in the ultimate partition of China — I mean ultimate. I hope we shall not have to do it in our day. The Aryan stock is bound to triumph.")
Asian people are scapegoated, attacked and killed, all whipped up by the crudest anti-Chinese racism that’s lain dormant as an inserted Yellow Peril memory — which is now being triggered at every level by the 4th Estate of the State, the mainstream media.
But the plutocrats and industry giants of the West don’t just hold the delusion of conquest of China as the endgame. They are also ridding themselves of surplus labour which is, of course, us. Pampered middle and working class westerners of the post-war liberal era who never had it so good are now being hollowed out and presented with the bill.
So how did we get from the global economy running in sync and relative peace to the West’s race towards a war on the fat, juicy prize that is China?
The Anglosphere’s propaganda wars rely on the public not joining the dots. Events are presented as mysterious disjointed acts of the cosmos without cause or effect.
Never forget the Battle of Orgreave, 18th June 1984, which rehearsed and revealed the depth of manipulation by the state.
Thousands of striking coal miners picketed the British Steel coking plant. The day erupted in violent clashes between the miners and the heavy police presence, many of whom were on horseback.
The news bulletins that night showed the miners attacking the police, who seemingly horse-charged them in response, eliciting public sympathy for the cops and outrage for the miners.
However, when the original film was examined, it emerged that the the TV news outlets had shown the news footage in reverse order, reversing cause and effect, when it had been the police on horseback who'd attacked the peaceful and legally picketing miners.
They cut up the narrative, respliced it, started it at Act 2, slashed the backstory entirely, recast heroes as villains and villains as heroes.
Attackers became victims and victims attackers.
2) China begins to buy US debt in 2000. In 2006, the value of the US dollar falls by a third because of Iraq war inflation. Meantime, an alarming housing bubble is being pumped up. When China complains, the US tells them to suck it up.
3) Two years later, America’s economic shenanigans lead to a breakdown of their system with the financial meltdown in the US Great Crash of 2008. A global Depression is feared. Deficiencies in Western capitalism are exposed and the system discredited in the eyes of many around the world. China steps in to act as a shock-absorber and rescues the world economy by allowing global currencies to devalue against the yuan, taking a massive economic hit themselves. They buy even more huge amounts of US debt until China holds over a trillion dollars’, and they stimulate domestic consumption because 1.4 billion Chinese can buy a lot of goods.
4) So China saves the world economy from devastation. And how is China thanked for this?
In October 2011, only three years after China saves us all from America’s Great Crash, Hillary Clinton — Obama’s Secretary of State — writes her notorious piece urging US control of the “Western Pacific” (South China Sea!) and the Central Eurasia landmass.
Three huge countries lie in a straight line across the landmass from Europe to Asia: they are, from West to East, Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Mongolia, plus the little known region of China called Sinkiang in ancient times, now known as Xinjiang – China’s back door into Central Asia and Europe. Taiwan claims Mongolia as part of China, so let’s hope President Tsai isn’t made Empress of all the Chinas as the USA seems to want.
The title of Hillary Clinton’s piece is America’s Pacific Century and basically lays out the aims of the Project for the New American Century (began in 1997).
Hillary writes: “… there should be no doubt that America has the capacity to secure and sustain our global leadership in this century as we did in the last.
“The future of politics will be decided in Asia, not Afghanistan or Iraq, and the United States will be right at the center of the action.”
The same year, a NATO coalition attacks Libya and destroys the country.
5) A year later, in 2012, President Obama Pivots to Asia, removing US military from the Middle East and pouring it into Asia where America has about 400 bases surrounding China. By doing so, America takes the first step in existentially threatening China.
2013: US-Australia practise war on China in the exercise “Talisman Saber,” involving 22,000 American and 10,000 Australian personnel and 27 warships.
2014: The US and Philippines begin annual military exercises over the pretext of disputed islands and shoals. Vietnam already started militarising their reclaimed islands back in the 1970s.
6) Obama revives military exercises in the Malacca Strait, situated between Indonesia and Malaysia, threatening to fence in China. Previous massive US exercises had been held in 2006 and 2007, prompting China to take defensive measures. Around 80 per cent of South China Sea traffic is China sending us their goods.
7) Donald Trump is elected in 2016, partly in fear of Killary's enthusiasm for World War. Trump launches a Trade War on China on spurious grounds. He imposes crippling trade tariffs on Chinese imports (paid for by the American consumer), claiming a huge trade deficit but when you factor in the American corporate giants providing sales and services inside China — like Apple, Microsoft, MacDonalds, Nike, Coke and Starbucks — the deficit is actually a surplus of about $24 billion.
8) Around the same time as Trump’s Trade War, there’s a slew of Thucydides Trap articles warning us not to have a war just because Athens is catching up with Sparta. The trap refers to the situation in history when an upcoming power (ancient Athens) rivals the existing power (Sparta) and the result is a devastating war that wrecks both sides. China negotiates trade in good faith, increasing their purchase of US farming produce and machinery, but refuses to buckle.
13) Western mainstream media such as the Guardian close to opposing views by the time of Hong Kong riots and the CoVfefe outbreak in 2019. The Guardian's sister paper, The Washington Post, is owned by oligarch Jeff Bezos whose Amazon juggernaut runs the Pentagon's Cloud. Capitalism now openly runs the state.
14) In January 2020, just as the world is waking up to the Covid pandemic, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo calls the Communist Party of China the “central threat of our times.”
Most people have heard Pompeo’s notorious boast that he lies, cheats and steals and runs entire courses on it. How many know this is the exact wording of the Honor Code of the West Point Military Academy he attended … but in reverse: “A Cadet will not lie, cheat, steal, or tolerate those who do”. They are laughing AT you, not with you.
15) Biden is elected President in November 2020 and raises America's military spend to $780 BILLION a year. On top of this he places a fat bounty on China's head when he budgets $500m a year specifically on anti-China propaganda.
After promising he won't start World War 3, Biden forms AUKUS with Australia, and UK, bringing nuclear war to Asia.
In May 2022, Biden will lash up with Japan in preparing for a war on China on the pretext of "defending" Taiwan despite paying lip-service to the One China policy. Constant sabre-rattling provocations — supplying military arms, sending trainers and politicians to the island, sailing entire warfleets off the coast and sending submarines and airplanes into China's territorial waters and airspace — fail to provoke China into hot conflict with its own territory. America and the West are denied their casus belli and it enrages them.
18) Putin sends his military into the Ukraine. Biden gets his war at last.
19) So … Obama launches the war on China after Dubbya Bush sets it up.
Trump and his Gang that Couldn’t Shoot Straight find the plans and try to play it clever.
Biden becomes Trump Lite, gets a taste for it and eclipses even the Donald’s hideousness. He’s unable to fulfil even his promise of ending student debt.
I look at the richest country on the planet and see what they’ve done with their wealth. It has been one long looting spree until the top 0.1 per cent own as much as the bottom 90 per cent and the top 0.01 per cent own 11.2 per cent of America's total wealth. Having sucked their own country dry, a tiny stratum of oligarchs, plutocrats, Military Industrial Complex, fossil fuel companies, tech giants and gun-lobby enthusiasts are now creating new hunting grounds in order to replenish and reinvigorate their imploding economy.
And the mainstream media, the Fourth Estate whose role it is to hold the power of the first three estates — legislative, executive and judicial — to account, are right in there with them.
No Fourth Estate, no democracy.
No Cold War online event 25th May 2022 NATO, Ukraine and Russia: war, propaganda and censorship
Andrew Feinstein - Author, campaigner and former African National Congress MP
Camila Escalante - Journalist and presenter for Kawsachun News
Asa Winstanley - Journalist and political commentator
Anna Chen - Writer, poet and broadcaster
Kayla Quesada - Academic and geo-political analyst
Steve Sweeney - International Editor of the Morning Star
Chair: Sequoyah De Souza - No Cold War Britain
UK frogs still being boiled slowly as the government declares Covid-19 to be
endemic and ends restrictions.
System failed but mission accomplished
So was it negligent homicide, homicidal negligence or mass murder? No, it's
worse: attending parties during lockdown.
It may have been illegal under their own rules, selfish and hypocritical while
people were dying, but the charging elephant in the Downing Street garden
party is the mainstream media's news blackout on how
China eradicated Covid
by day 43 of its unprecedented 76-day lockdown of 23rd January 2020.
With a Bannonesque "flooding the zone with excrement" (to put it politely),
and the robust instigation of a two-minute hate on the new Goldstein figure
after evuhl Ruskies and Muslims fell from the Number One bogey-man spot, Brits
were denied China's hard-won roadmap that enabled them to reopen their economy
with only outbreaks to stamp out.
Instead, we find ourselves reinventing the wheel over and over, heading into the third year of an avoidable
pandemic, no longer even pretending to fend off a virus that is clearly NOT
flu and which has not done mutating because it now has an entire population as
its playground. Rather than starving it to extinction in a properly-run
quarantine by denying it the hosts it needs to survive and reproduce, the
state has birthed a Covid industry. Yay, lucky shareholders. Congrats to the power-grabbers.
We've now had 176,000 UK Covid deaths (within 60 days of infection) with growing numbers of children added to
the list. In the same period, China has had fewer than 5,000. But still the
constant refrain, "China baaaad".
So who gains?
How's this for coincidence?
Boris Johnson mirrored much of Trump's super-spreader policy and cut the legs
out from under our defences, closing the UK's pandemic team within days of
entering Downing Street as Prime Minister in July 2019, the same month that
Trump shut the US CDC's Beijing office that was supposed to monitor new
diseases after he'd already dismantled the White House pandemic team.
Trump's own National Security officers briefed him in detail about the deadly pandemic on the 28th January 2020 and yet he played down the virus, denied its existence, called it a hoax, undermined the science, stigmatised masks, held massive unmasked rallies, pirated PPE from other countries and his own blue states and recommended bleach.
The same inaction at the top froze any effective response to Covid in the USA and the UK for nearly three months after the 31st December alarm was sounded by the Wuhan Municipal Health Commission and carried by the news agencies. As the virus continued to seed itself in the US and UK populations, vast amounts of money would be made.
The UK, and latterly Australia, behaved as if they'd been receiving the same instructions.
Attending parties during lockdown is small beer when the government pauperised us with a devastating no-deal Brexit, allowed Covid to rip, killing 176K Brits, and compounds their crimes by dragging us into World War 3 against our global lifeboat, the world's growth engine that also happens to be a nuclear power.
China sustained a massive hit to its economy and supply chains in order to prioritise the protection of its population, not to mention buying the rest of us time to act. Johnson has
done the opposite: sacrificing public health in order to protect (mostly) private and corporate wealth.
To think it all started with a £350 million per week promise on a red bus and ends with an Opium Wars 2 shakedown of the US's upcoming rival by some of the same imperial powers that profited from the West's narcocapitalist atrocities the first time round in the 19th century.
The Brexit and Covid phases are now done. Boris Johnson served the US well but he dragged his feet over ripping out our Huawei 5G infrastructure costing us billions and, although he's gone through the motions with his military willy-waving off the coast of China, it seems he has little real appetite for war.
So Richie Sunak and Dominic Cummings deliver the coup de grace despite their leading participation in this nightmare because it's time for the next Prime Minister to enthusiastically smash the kneecaps of America's talented rival and lead the charge to war with the superpower. My bet is on Starmer, considering the snarling China-hate that emanated from his recent shadow Foreign Secretary, Lisa Nandy, and David Lammy's promise to Obama last month: "We need to get back to being a consistent, reliable partner that puts values and human right (sic) at the centre of our place in the world", reading "human rights" as the usual euphemism for "our might is right".
The media need to examine their own part in keeping the public in the dark, why they did it and what their objective is, because it's looking more and more as if the USA's geopolitical agenda is far more important to this government than the safety of its own population.
(Edit 8th Feb 2023)
SUNAK co-founded HEDGE FUND THELEME Sunak put all assets in a 'blind trust' in 2018 As Chancellor called in Theleme partner John Sheridan as adviser during pandemic. Theleme bought £1 BILLION of shares in Moderna,some sold at huge profit. See chart of their purchases 👇🏼👇🏼 pic.twitter.com/IwvMOIFooP