10/01/2019, 10.15
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China marks 70 years of kitsch and pursuit of power

by Wang Zhicheng

A military parade with 15 thousand troops, 160 planes, 600 models of weapons, many "made in China". The "ships", symbol of the Chinese provinces, like Carnival floats. The great portrait of Xi Jinping, creator of the "Chinese dream". An abbreviated history of the Party, with its failures expunged. 10 Hong Kong policemen present, for distinguishing themselves in repression of anti-extradition movement. The "struggle" for the reunification of Taiwan.

Beijing (AsiaNews) - A massive parade to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the People's Republic of China took place this morning along the Changan Avenue, near Tiananmen Square, in an unprecedented performance of power and kitsch.

The military parade was a magnificent march of 15,000 troops (photo 2), with 160 planes and nearly 600 models of weapons demonstrating the modernity of "made in China" in armaments. There was no shortage of "kitsch" moments, such as the parade of "ships", symbols of Chinese provinces and economic zones, which aimed to highlight the ethnic diversity of the one China, but instead left the aftertaste of a Carnival parade (photo 3).

The celebration was above all in praise of the "eternal leader", the president for life Xi Jinping, who saluted a huge portrait of himself (photo 1), carried aloft on a floral float and by troops, who responded with affectionate slogans to his greeting.

The only one dressed in the Maoist jacket, flanked by former presidents Jiang Zemin and Hu Jintao, Xi Jinping gave a brief speech from the balcony of the imperial palace overlooking Tiananmen Square: "no force can shake the status of our great country, no force can stop the Chinese people and the Chinese nation from marching forward”.

"The People's Liberation Army will serve its purpose in safeguarding the sovereignty, security, and development interests of the country, and world peace” and he called on the Communist Party and the country to unite and continue to fight for the realization of the “China dream” - the great rejuvenation of the Chinese nation.

The parade also had a political message, showing the Chinese Communist Party as guarantor of China's transformation from a "humiliated" country by other nations to a superpower. In an abbreviated historical summary, a large flowered  float showed the portrait of Mao Zedong, the founder of the People's Republic of China, without any memory of the over 50 million Chinese who died of starvation or in prison because of the erroneous policies of the "Great Helmsman"; then there was the wagon of Deng Xiaoping, "the architect of economic reforms", which excluded democratic reforms and was responsible for the Tiananmen massacre; finally, there was Xi's chariot, the creator of the "Chinese dream", but also of a society under police control.

With a certain irony, in his speech, Xi said that China "must adhere" to the principle "one country, two systems, which guarantees liberal society in Hong Kong, which in recent months is living in a strong tension due to the lack of democracy. Also present at the parade were 10 Hong Kong policemen, distinguished for their operations against the anti-extradition movement. Among them was the policeman who fired the first lethal bullet and who has become a hero in China (photo 4).

Xi also stated that he seeks "peaceful development" in relations with Taiwan, considered "a rebel island" by Beijing, but at the same time he promised that China "will continue to fight for the reunification of the country".

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