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[Chinese Character] “Demolish” Appears on Gate Pillars of Chinese Embassy in the US; Suspected Graffiti from Protesters
[Note: The character “拆” (chai, to demolish or dismantle) is commonly seen in China written on buildings to be torn down for new construction or redevelopment, and has sometimes been seen as a symbol of the Chinese government’s “bullying” policy that allows forced evictions and demolitions.]
On the early morning of 2013 July 10, three graffiti Chinese characters “拆” [“demolish”] appeared on the courtyard gate posts and the entrance of the office building for China’s embassy in the United States. American media claimed that this may be protesters expressing dissatisfaction and protest with the forced demolition in certain parts of China.
According to TaKung comprehensive reports, two Chinese characters “拆” were sprayed in blue and black paint appeared on the gate pillars on both sides of Chinese Embassy in the US. Because the embassy posts are gray, it was very conspicuous.
From the pictures, we can’t see guards in the front gate of the embassy, but there are cameras mounted on the pillars. Thus after retrieving the surveillance footage, it should be not difficult to see the graffiti artist’s face. As of press time, the embassy has not yet offered a response to this incident.
Some American media have claimed that this might be people using graffiti to express their dissatisfaction to protest the forced demolition in certain parts of China.
China’s central government had issued many documents, emphasizing that violent demolition and compulsory relocation are not allowed, but under the impetus of economic development, illegal problems such as forced demolition still exists with some local governments.
According to reports, the Chinese embassy in the US held the ceremony for opening a new embassy in 2008 July, which was designed by famous Chinese-American architect Ieoh Ming Pei’s Pei Partnership Architects, and his two sons: Bei Jianzhong and Bei Lizhong. Groundbreaking formally started 2005 April 22. In order to ensure the safety and security of the embassy, construction workers and building materials were transported directly from China to Washington D.C..
What is interesting is that the new US embassy in China held its opening ceremony when US President George W. Bush was in Beijing to attend the Olympic Games. Media claimed at that time that the capitals of the two large countries of China and the United States holding new embassy opening ceremonies respectively could be called a grand occasion in the diplomatic history between China and the United States.
Comments on QQ:
American is not professional. The character of “拆” is not standard! It is supposed to be in red paint, writing a very big “拆” domineeringly first then painting a circle around the calligraphy in red paint.
腾讯郴州市网友 马兰79.1 :
“拆”, such artistry, such a feeling of home. In China, it is difficult to find a place without this word. This is a symbol. That it has crossed the ocean to the United States today is not surprising at all. Like porcelain crossing the ocean, it has henceforth become equivalent to China. [But] can one word “拆” represent [China]? It’s too simple. Is it really evolved?
Though the writing style is very similar, it’s not professional enough. First of all, it should be in red color. Second it should be circled. Some places even draw on a cross/X. Looking at the handwriting, it looks like it was written by a Chinese person. Ordinarily, foreigners who haven’t had two years of [Chinese character writing] practice, their Chinese characters wouldn’t be at this level.
The Chinese government truly is NB, even demolishing its way to the United States.
Demolish, demolish, demolish, now internationally.
That the Chinese government dares to publish negative reports on the Internet shows they have confidence and determination to solve the problems. Don’t just see something and spit [criticize, talk shit about]. If you are a true patriotic Chinese person, then put forward your point and solution. Hurling abuse without thinking should not be something patriotic Chinese people do. If you are not patriotic, please go away.
Ha, now this is something that can be demolished…
Hehe. This word was written well and properly. With this, our Chinese characters have gone international, finally going beyond our own country.
No lying: Maybe Americans do not have much interest in this, just like back then when Beijinger in New York was being filmed in the United States, when an entire street of Americans rushed by without stopping to see what is happening –- Our countrymen’s mentalities. Let’s be more like a large country [major power], a little more tolerate, a little more calm [secure]! Let’s not have a presence/bearing that is inferior to even the ancient Tang dynasty…
Why do I feel so gratified… a sense of delight in my heart like that of secretly being happy when seeing others embarrassing themselves, like when the national football/soccer team lost to Thailand. I’m not angry. I’m very happy.
An embassy is the symbol of national sovereignty, and to defile the embassy is to insult the dignity of the country! Regardless of what goal the people who did the graffiti had, doing this is going too far. What’s the difference between this and writing bastard on someone else’s face?! I severely condemn this kind of behavior!
Back then when Yugoslavia’s embassy was bombed, millions of Chinese people were outraged. Now there are people who treat our embassy as if it were an illegally constructed building and there are people applauding??? Do you people have any national self-respect at all? Do you still think of yourselves Chinese?!
Probably [because it was] an illegally constructed structure? Otherwise tofu-dreg construction [shoddy construction]? It looks like a village office, without any stateliness. I ask Obama for an explanation.
I bet Americans will also begin using the Chinese character “拆” in the future when it comes to demolition. I just don’t know if they’ll draw a circle.
To be blunt, nowadays in China, whether it is the cities, suburbs, or the rural countryside, who isn’t hoping for demolition every day? They all want something for nothing, to get rich overnight [from the government compensation given when land and property is expropriated from the original inhabitants for demolition and redevelopment]. Just how many young people in rural areas have actually done any farming, and just how many still live in their hometowns [villages]? The minute they have some money, they just want to buy a house in the county seat [nearest major urban town]. If they have a little bit more money, they want to buy a house in the city or the provincial capital. The real nail houses are basically big families or families with some background [connections]. Only a minority were screwed over by local governments and developers. These days, other than government officials and speculators, most of the people who are buying homes are rural migrant workers, who still have land in their hometown villages, and write the names of their children on the property in the cities. They’re all very clever.
腾讯网友福州市 浪中游子: (responding to above)
You cannot think that simple. Have you put yourself in their shoes before? When rural farmers and peasants are stripped of their land at cheap prices, when the home they’ve lived in for how many years is then ruthlessly demolished, when they then have to move into flimsy highrises, can you imagine how happy you would be? The millionaires created by demolitions, only people who live in urban villages [urban ghettos that are demolished to be redeveloped/gentrified] and the like are so lucky. Do you know how many farmers in this world aren’t willing to leave their old homes where they’ve lived for many years? It’s an emotional attachment to the old home. It’s just like giving you 10 million in exchange for the life of your son, wife, or parents. Would you be willing?
腾讯网友 阳光无限: (responding to above)
You all have pig brains! In our country, every time there is a demolition, just look at how many people are made millionaires and multimillionaires? All this money, just who is ultimately paying the bill for it all if it isn’t the ordinary common people and the people without any land or property of their own, as well as the general taxpayers and mortgage slaves. You people are aiding tyrants in their oppression, virtually pushing up housing prices. “A rising tide lifts all boats”, do you understand this saying? Do you understand this truth? You people are being sold as pigs by crafty people and you’re even helping them count the money. What a bunch of stupid pigs. You need to know that some households who have had their homes demolished are just as evil as some developers.
腾讯网友 hjian: (responding to above)
Cannot treat them all as the same, this too is a kind of [special] characteristic.