Manzhouli: China’s Forgotten “Port City” on the Russian Border

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Manzhouli, China’s busiest land port bordering Russia is often overlooked as one of the first cities to open up during China’s economic reforms. Labeled as the “Shenzhen of the north”, Manzhouli has since grown into an important border crossing responsible for nearly 70% of all trade with Russia.

Chinese netizens react to the massive Chinese border crossing gate at Manzhouli that absolutely dwarfs the Russian gate on the opposite side.

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From Sina Weibo:

Sorry Russians, We Didn’t Do This On Purpose

Here is the imposing border crossing gate at Manzhouli…across the border, that small gate you need a binocular to see is the Russian border crossing gate built 30 years ago. In the distance is Zabaikalsk Station under the administration of Chita. The Chinese border crossing gate at Manzhouli underwent 5 generation of construction, from a crude steel gate to the massive structure today, it reflects the shift of national power between China and Russia. The border gate have a total length of 105 meters, width of 46 meters, height of 43.7 meters, the connecting bridge is 16.9 meters tall, with a total area of 6000 square meters, it is the largest border crossing gate in China. Manzhouli border crossing is the largest inland crossing in China, it’s responsible for over 70% of land trade that are transported through here.

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First generation of the gate was built during the Qing Dynasty, it was set up by the Russians; about a dozen kilometers away from the current gate was a wooden pole, but by the early Republican era it no longer existed. The second generation gate was built in 1920 and was constructed out of wood, on top carved the words “China-Russia Gate”; in 1949 it was torn down by the Soviet Union. The third generation gate was built in 1968, it was a metal gate over rail tracks, on top written the words “All the Proletariat in the World Unite”. The fourth generation gate was built in 1989. With the improvement of Russian and Chinese economic relations and the rise in volume of railway freight, the old gate can no longer meet the needs of the rapid rise in commercial trade between the two countries. To meet the demands of the newly rebuilt border railway, the fourth generation gate was demolished in 2007 to be reconstructed. Today, the fifth generation gate took into full account of the future growth of Sino-Russian trade, the railway was expanded from single lane to double lane tracks with standard gauges. The fifth generation border gate costed a total of 82 million yuan, with a length of 105 meters, width of 46.6 meters, and area of 6000 square meters, the architecture style is of post-industrial style. This project took only 100 days to complete, and on the day of completion Chairman Wu Bangguo climbed on top the gate as the first leader in the central leadership to do so.

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Manzhouli’s border gate is designated as a national 4A scenic spot, it is located 9km west of the city occupying 13 square kilometers and a total area of 200,000 square meters including the border gate, the #41 border marker, the peace gate theme sculpture and Manzhouli historical reliefs, the historical site of Manzhouli underground transportation line, red tourism exhibition, locomotive plaza and other scenic areas, attracting 2 million visitors each year.

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Climb on top of the gate, Zabaikalsk Station, buildings, streets on the Russian side can be clearly seen. Not far from the Chinese gate lies the Russian border crossing gate, written on top are the 6 gold letters “РОССИЯ” [Russia] that are especially eye catching. The Russian national emblem is on top of the gate, behind the gate is the small town of Zabaikalsk administered by Chita, located at the junction of China, Mongolia, and Russia, just 9km from Manzhouli with a total population of 7000 people.

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Comments on Sina Weibo:

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鄞州阿庆:

There is no need to build it so big, it is just a gate, waste of money!

辣手dmx:

Vanity project, what is there to boast about? Looking back at all the wasteful spending due to vanity projects across the country, the corruption caused by it can be seen everywhere.

鲲鹏与鸿雁齐飞:

Sigh! The times have changed!!

荷兰火侯:

When I visited in 1997, the other side still had the big USSR symbol.

明明巴巴:

Just by looking at the border gates, China has become the big loser here.

凡心尘世:

What is the point of building a beautiful gate, even if Russia built one out of wood would you dare to trespass on it?

little-sheep111:

I think by comparing Chinese and American (you can also add Japan) government buildings, it can even better reflect the Heavenly Kingdom’s rapid advancement.

戴-勇:

What is the point of comparing? There is nothing comparable, because Russia to this day have occupied 3 million square kilometers of Chinese territory. It seems China, after losing land didn’t go occupy an inch of Russian territory, you still make the comparison?

宁静的大森林:

Russia does not pay attention to development in the Far East, so comparing border gates means little. China’s side really is wasteful, put too much value on face, they should spend money on promoting trade and commerce, such as building more trade markets.

席卓飞:

If China and Japan share a land border crossing, China’s side will definitely be more luxurious, and Japan’s side will be simple.

何囧老湿:

Your country’s government buildings are all so majestic, they are also the only buildings still left standing after an earthquake.

爱读古兰卡菲尔:

China’s gate is in reality two connected malls.

非得起个名字才能上啊:

What’s the fucking point of having a big gate.

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  • RaphaeI

    Seems like vagina-compensation syndrome to me. For those who are insecure that their vaginas are not big, wide, deep, spacious enough.

    • terroir

      Yes, so long as one is able to fit a set of car keys down there.

      The rest of that joke is just yonic hyperbole.

      • mr.wiener

        “Yonic” is one of my favorite words …and it rhymes with tonic.
        I wonder if people get excited when they see the big choo choo enter the entrance gate. There must be a collective sgh of happiness from all on the train as the announcement is heard: “You are now entering China!”
        For my money the best crossing point in the world is between India and Pakistan where two men dressed as human roosters try to convey emotions of anger ,outrage and defience as they march towards each other,glare and chew their owm moustaches in fury.
        Insert Kyber Pass jokes here:_______.

        • terroir

          The new “that’s what she said/PHRASING” for a yonic-minded generation:

          “Now you’re thinking with portals.”

          It’s an excellent pick-up line that works over XBox Live.

      • Amused

        I had a gf once that you could put two hands inside and clap(shudders)… But car keys??? How do you get those up there without ending up with an angry woman?

        • mr.wiener

          Twist them and see if she starts?

          • terroir

            In this case, flooding the engine isn’t such a bad thing.

            It’s probably too late for this, but here goes: Ladies are wonderful people.

        • David

          It is the punchline to a very old joke. “Forget the flashlight, help me find my keys and we can drive out of here”.

    • Irvin

      China already got the biggest vagina stadium, they don’t need another one for a gate.

    • 42

      Big Vagina compensation? What you talking about? You forget the best vagina is when its tight and narrow, not spacious and wide…..wrong analogy dude.

  • lacompacida

    Just like the Great Wall, this gate will stop all invasion from the North.

  • Bluex

    If its not for large sum of allocated money “disappearing” into the elected official’s pocket overseeing this project, you could see it 3 times larger with diamond encrusted murals on top of it.

    • xiaode

      There is only one mistake in your sentence: the word “elected”.

      • terroir

        The word “elected” is a mistake. Look no further that the recent US midterms.

        • Probotector

          What? Because 2/3 of the US pop didn’t vote, (of their own accord) the Republican majority in your opinion is what Illegitimate? Sorry, but it was a fair contest, and just because the outcome isn’t what you wanted doesn’t mean the election was somehow fixed. Moreover, this is incredible statement, when you consider how Obama and the democrats want to influence the electorate demographics with amnesty.

          • terroir

            I stand corrected. The word “bi-partisan cooperation” is a mistake.

          • David

            Perhaps now there will be some. It works better when one party does not have all the power. Time will tell.

          • Don’t Believe the Hype

            What? I would say the opposite. As soon as republicans had control of the House, nothing got done anymore. The more they “share” the less they can agree on, at least in recent history

          • David

            Well, when the President had control of the Congress for his first two years, they STILL could not pass even a simple budget. The only thing the passed (of significance) was the ACA (Obamacare). Most of the rest that he has done by executive order. He could not even get bills through his own Congress. anyway, time will tell.

          • terroir

            Yes. Political gridlock is harmony all-around. Everyone then shares the power to interrupt the political process, making for true democracy.

            The logical next step after finishing someone else’s sentences is naturally for both parties to talk at the same time. Therefore, the next Congress will be more harmonic than ever, waves of speech lapping up against each other like a sea of compromise.

      • Bluex

        Crap, overlooked proper word. “Appointed” should be it.

  • terroir

    ” The third generation gate was built in 1968, it was a metal gate over rail tracks, on top written the words “All the Proletariat in the World Unite”.”

    …AND MAKE MONEY.

  • terroir

    Large, ostentatious figureheads are more important to China than to other countries, and they’re doing it again.

    China spent $350 million on a bridge to N Korea as a way to develop a special economic zone, and…. nothing. The roads aren’t even done on the N Korea side. It opened weeks ago, and it is literally a bridge to nowhere.

    http://news.yahoo.com/chinas-350m-bridge-gets-scant-n-korean-welcome-062324947.html

    • David

      I am glad the U.S. is not the only one doing that kind of thing.

      • Joe

        except China actually built the bridge to nowhere

        • David

          True, our bridge in Alaska actually went to a small island where a community lived. It was more a “bridge to only a small population who was tired of using the ferry and finally wanted to drive home” Not quite catchy enough for the papers.

      • terroir

        Pff. Projecting.

  • AbC

    “My opening is bigger than yours… Nah nanah nanah”

  • Probotector

    Good to see most of the netizen comments agree that this is again pointless dick measuring (except the guy moaning about stolen territory). However, I love the line “it reflects the shift of national power between China and Russia.” This, coming form the same people who had to slaughter a few hundred thousand canines to trade for a few obsolete Russian jets. Yeah, um, Russia still holds more worldwide influence than China does, and is generally considered more significant in most people’s minds and is a nation taken more seriously. Hell, they’re taken more seriously in the international stage than ‘Murica these days. When comparing the leaders of these three nations, who would you have more respect for, the husband of a singer who used to work for the Sino equivalent of USO, the golfing community organiser from Chicago, or the tiger wrestler who was once head of the KGB?

    • Alex Dương

      I’d rather work for Obama because even if I piss him off, my freedom won’t be in question. Dunno if you can say the same for Xi or Putin.

      • 42

        Tell that to the people imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay…..

        • Alex Dương

          Only one American was ever imprisoned at Gitmo, and that was somewhat by accident / mistake.

    • Amused

      I wrestle tigers far more competently than that hack! He doesn’t even wear the traditional fur underwear when he performs….

    • Bluex

      Putin is lucky cause its not a Republican president right now

      • Alex Dương

        It’s not clear to me that McCain (who was not going to be elected in 2008 with Palin as the running mate) or Romney would do anything differently.

        • Don’t Believe the Hype

          that may be true, tho reps have traditionally shown (at least outwardly) a tougher stance against these countries IMO

          • Alex Dương

            I agree with the outwardly part. When push comes to shove, Republicans prefer picking on weak countries like Iraq. Bush 43, for example, didn’t do anything when North Korea conducted their 2006 nuclear test.

          • Bluex

            N. Korea is a lost cause, everyone knew about it and preferred to just resort to their normal rhetorical condemnation of it. As long as China don’t hold sway, N.Korea is practically untouchable.

          • Alex Dương

            That’s exactly my point, though: (chicken) hawk Republicans only pick on countries that can’t defend themselves (i.e. don’t have “weapons of mass destruction”).

      • Don’t Believe the Hype

        As much as I hate republicans, i have to admit a tough approach to Russia/China is a much better foreign policy than engagement right now. History has shown both those countries just laugh in the face of any conciliatory gestures

        • William the Awesometacular

          Is there any other good political parties in America? Getting tired of hearing about Dems/Reps.

          • Don’t Believe the Hype

            Nope! You are preaching to the choir

  • Amused

    “There is nothing comparable, because Russia to this day have occupied 3 million square kilometers of Chinese territory”

    Hey look, they don’t even need an ocean to wheel this bullshit out now. Quality education they receive here, I’m telling you.

    • Stefan

      Actually it’s true, China was forced to give outer Manchuria to Russia during the Qing dynasty.

      • guest

        It would also be true to say that the Qing also extended their lands, by force, taking from others.

        • Alex Dương

          Most definitely. Xinjiang is Chinese because the Qianlong Emperor committed genocide against the Zunghar people in 1758.

        • Eidolon

          It’s also the case that Russians did the same. Were you under the impression that Siberia, the Far East, etc. have been Russia’s ‘forever and ever?’ Because they sure as heck conquered it from the natives in the same way that China did.

    • Alex Dương

      Following up on @stefanyichengxumattsson:disqus’s reply, the only “bullshit” part is that “3 million square kilometers” is exaggerated. Otherwise, you can verify for yourself that Qing China ceded all of modern Primorsky Krai and half of Khabarovsk Krai to Russia.

      • Joe

        The 3 million include treaty of aigun, treaty of peking, the land east of lake zaysan, mongolia, and tuva, so its actually slightly over 3 million square km.

        • Alex Dương

          Thanks, I forgot about Tuva. But if the bulk of the 3 million figure consists of Mongolia, I still think it’s exaggerated because while Mongolia was a Soviet satellite during the Cold War, it was never part of “Russia.”

          • Joe

            if you cut out mongolia its about 1.7 million (edit)

          • Alex Dương

            Mongolia’s area is 1.565 million square kilometers, which is more than half the total claim of lost territory to Russia. Regardless, if @disqus_wcDnEMiQ1s:disqus’s point is that it’s exaggerated, that stands, but otherwise, a good chunk of Chinese territory was ceded in perpetuity to Russia in the 19th Century, and the Chinese accepted this in 1991.

          • Ryan

            Remember, any land that China has ever conquered, won, or taken? China’s inherent right to rule FOREVER!!!

            But any land that China has ever lost, ceded, or given up? Is STILL China’s inherent right to rule forever.
            They seem simply incapable of seeing the hypocrisy in that.

            Chinese people will say something like “Tibet became under Chinese rule during the Qing Empire. So it’s our inherent right to rule it FOREVER!!!!.”

            Wow… ok.., but under that PRECISE SAME LINE OF REASONING, couldn’t I say that “Primorsky Krai became under RUSSIAN rule in 1848. So it’s their inherent right to rule it FOREVER!!!!!”

          • Alex Dương

            1. The Chinese renounced all claims to Primorsky Krai et al. in 1991. That some or even many Chinese citizens don’t like this doesn’t change that the government has no border disputes with Russia.

            When did the Chinese ever renounce their claims to Tibet? The answer is never.

            2. You know perfectly well that you would never renounce your Canadian citizenship and go back to wherever your ancestors in Europe are from. Yet, you expect the Chinese to drop their claims to Tibet and leave. You are as hypocritical as these Chinese are.

          • Ryan

            Yeah, that’s because Russia is too powerful for China to invade and control, but Tibet isn’t. That’s the only reason.

            I love this.

            The Qing and Tibet form a sort of tributary alliance in the past.
            Eventually the Qing extend this against the Tibetans wishes into direct rule of Tibet.
            The Tibetans rebel against the Qing in 1911, expel them from their country, and claim independence.
            MANY years and MANY Chinese governments later, the PRC invades independent Tibet

            The amount of spin necessary to rationalize that illegal invasion is insurmountable.

            One thing I don’t understand.
            If the Chinese argument is “Well, we ruled them against their will for a time during the Qing dynasty. That means it’s our inherent right to rule them now.”
            Couldn’t the Tibetans say “Well, we ruled OURSELVES from 1912-1950. That means it’s our inherent right to still rule ourselves now”.

          • Alex Dương

            Yeah, that’s because Russia is too powerful for China to invade and control, but Tibet isn’t. That’s the only reason.

            Indeed. Mongolia is independent today because the Russians gave the Chinese a dilemma: accept the partition of Mongolia and keep Inner Mongolia, or refuse to accept it and lose Inner Mongolia. Tibet is not independent today because the British tricked the Tibetans into thinking that Chinese suzerainty was independence.

            But the British certainly could have forced the Chinese to accept Tibetan independence; the Chinese were in no position to complain in 1914. So why didn’t they?

            The Qing and Tibet form a sort of tributary alliance in the past.

            That is incorrect. While Elliot Sperling argues that Tibet was a vassal state of the Qing, he nevertheless notes that Tibet was under “complete political domination” by the Qing. That is quite different from “a sort of tributary alliance,” which would suggest political autonomy.

            The Tibetans rebel against the Qing in 1911, expel them from their country, and claim independence.

            Sure, the 13th Dalai Lama claimed independence. Problem was, the ROC still claimed them as part of China, and the ROC never relinquished its claim, nor was it ever forced to relinquish its claim.

            Complicating matters even more are the inconvenient facts that the 9th Panchen Lama supported the KMT, and the 10th Panchen Lama voluntarily supported the CCP.

          • Ryan

            Britain probably didn’t think a Chinese government would be evil enough to do an imperialistic invasion of Tibet 30 years later.

            And Tibet and the Qing STARTED as a tributary state. Of course, the Qing eventually extended that into complete control against the Tibetans will.

            The Tibetans rebelled against the Qing (the people invading them against their will) and declared independence.
            It’s still a psychotic stretch to say that a few Chinese governments later 30 years in the future has the inherent right to do an imperialistic invasion of that independent country.

            It’s amazing.
            The only people in the world who seem to think this imperialistic invasion was ok are the people who are born under a government who censors the media and hides the truth from it’s people.
            Gee… I wonder why that is?

          • Alex Dương

            Britain probably didn’t think a Chinese government would be evil enough to do an imperialistic invasion of Tibet 30 years later.

            You’re aware that the British Empire was once known as the Empire on which the Sun never set, yes? How do you think it “earned” that title? By being nice? Of course not. So I hope you don’t really think that such an entity would think that way.

            And Tibet and the Qing STARTED as a tributary state. Of course, the Qing eventually extended that into complete control against the Tibetans will.

            Chinese claims to Tibet date back to 1725. The Golden Urn system dates back to 1792 and was first used in 1820. So “eventually” was less than 100 years.

            It’s still a psychotic stretch to say that a few Chinese governments later 30 years in the future has the inherent right to do an imperialistic invasion of that independent country.

            When did these Chinese governments ever renounce their claims to Tibet? When were they ever forced to renounce their claims? The answer is “never” to both questions.

            The only people in the world who seem to think this imperialistic invasion was ok are the people who are born under a government who censors the media and hides the truth from it’s people.

            Please, not this nonsense again. You’ve already admitted that even if the Chinese were to acknowledge that their claims to Tibet originate from Qing imperialism in the 18th Century, you STILL would not accept Chinese claims as valid. So “the truth” is a red herring here, and once again, you are being very hypocritical as you know perfectly well that you aren’t renouncing your Canadian citizenship any time soon. Don’t expect others to do what you won’t do.

          • Ryan

            I love this.

            So the Qing conquer China and rule them against their will. Then they through a long confusing process end up ruling Tibet against their will.
            Then both the Chinese and Tibetans rebel against Qing rule.But then 30 years later after a few different Chinese Governments, a Communist Dictatorship sees it as their inherent right to rule over all the land that their previous foreign rulers had conquered.

            It’s just insane. Flat out insane.

            It would be like Egyptians claiming “We were conquered by the Roman Empire against our will, but then they conquered the rest of Northern Africa. That means that it’s EGYPTS inherent right to rule all of Northern Africa forever. Afterall, the Egyptian governments never renounced their claims to Northern Africa. To prove that, renounce your Canadian citizenship, or you’re a hypocrite.”
            Uh…. what?
            The funny thing is, if the Egyptian government censored the internet and controlled the Egyptians to think that way, they probably would believe it. Even though the rest of the world is literally SHOCKED that such an insane argument can be believed.
            I guess that’s the power of brainwashing an entire people through media censorship.

            I also love the hypocrisy of the Chinese stance.
            Based on such ridiculous logic, I could make the following argument.
            Mongolia conquered and ruled China for hundreds of years. There are many many maps that prove this (lol… that stupid map argument). Therefore, it is Mongolia’s INHERENT RIGHT to rule over China for all eternity.
            Current day China should be handed over to the current government of Mongolia.
            Let me guess… such arguments are only relevant when the BENEFIT China… correct?

            If you think that the Chinese government did nothing wrong in regards to Tibet, then why does the Government hide everything about it? Why is it not allowed to even be discussed? Isn’t that pretty solid freaking evidence that there IS something to hide?

          • Alex Dương

            But then 30 years later after a few different Chinese Governments, a Communist Dictatorship sees it as their inherent right to rule over all the land that their previous foreign rulers had conquered.

            What you forget or otherwise don’t want to talk about is that the non-Communist Nationalist dictatorship never, at any point in time from 1912 to 1949 (or afterward), renounced its claim to Tibet. Nor was it ever forced to renounce its claim to Tibet. Nor was the claim on paper only, as the KMT actually selected the 10th Panchen Lama and even tried to persuade him to leave with them to Taiwan.

            Your mistake is thinking that modern China from 1912 to 1949 actually accepted Tibetan independence and then decided in 1951 that Tibet was Chinese all along. Wrong. Modern China NEVER relinquished its claim to Tibet.

            It would be like Egyptians…

            Does Egypt have diplomatic relations with Algeria? Yes. Libya? Yes. Morocco? Yes. Sudan? Yes. Tunisia? Yes. So, your analogy is flawed.

            Mongolia conquered and ruled China for hundreds of years. There are many many maps that prove this (lol… that stupid map argument). Therefore, it is Mongolia’s INHERENT RIGHT to rule over China for all eternity.
            Current day China should be handed over to the current government of Mongolia.

            You already tried and failed with this argument, but I’ll refute it again since you didn’t learn anything last time. Your argument is flawed for the exact same reason Beijing’s version of history is flawed: there was something called “the Ming Empire” that followed the Yuan. You see, Genghis Khan’s descendants have no claim to China because Zhu Yuanzhang and his army kicked them out of China in 1368. At the same time, Chinese claims to Tibet cannot date back to the Yuan Empire because the successor Ming Empire did not have sovereignty over Tibet. This is why the correct claim starts from 1725.

            Let me guess… such arguments are only relevant when they BENEFIT China… correct?

            Actually, it’s funny you bring this up because people like you expect China to assume all the burdens, obligations, and liabilities of predecessor states without any of the assets. You expect the ROC to uphold treaties signed by the Qing, but you say that the Qing’s borders can’t be used as a starting point for the ROC’s borders. That makes no sense. The ROC was the successor state of the Qing Empire. It was obliged to follow all the treaties the Qing signed, and yes, it was obliged to start with the Qing’s final borders. Of course, those were subject to change, but that isn’t what you’re arguing.

          • Ryan

            Tibet had already kicked out the Qing and declared independence by the time of the “Qing’s final borders”.

            They don’t need to ASK future Chinese governments for permission to do that.
            Who cares if the ROC never renounced Tibet. By the time the Qing had fully collapsed, they had already declared their independence.

            You say this “You see, Genghis Khan’s descendants have no claim to China because Zhu Yuanzhang and his army kicked them out of China in 1368”

            Ok, and right back at you “You see, China has no claim to Tibet because the Tibetans and their armies kicked out the Qing in 1911.”
            Let me guess… such logic only applies when THE CHINESE do it, correct?

            Only in China….
            “When we conquer land, it is our right to rule that land forever.”
            “but when others conquer us…. uh… the above logic doesn’t apply for some reason”.
            “In fact… uh… when others conquer us, we claim THEIR land as our inherent right to rule forever”.
            It’s just insane. Flat out insane.

            Care to explain why China censors all information about Tibet to it’s people? Afterall, as you claim (lol), they have nothing to hide.
            I guess they censor it for “fun”. Yeah, that must be it. They censor Tibet for “fun”.

          • Alex Dương

            Tibet had already kicked out the Qing and declared independence by the time of the “Qing’s final borders”.

            Wrong. We went over this already: you really don’t know as much about Tibet as you think you do.

            Who cares if the ROC never renounced Tibet.

            It matters if you’re trying to claim that Tibet was independent and recognized as independent between 1912 and 1949.

            Ok, and right back at you

            Kicking out the Qing doesn’t address that the ROC continued to claim Tibet. The only “challenge” to the ROC’s claim was from the U.K., which insisted that Tibet was under Chinese suzerainty and not Chinese sovereignty. So as I said, and as you are loath to admit, the U.K. had plenty of opportunities to recognize Tibetan independence, but it never did.

            Care to explain why China censors all information about Tibet to it’s people?

            There’s a lot of things the Chinese government shouldn’t censor. But once again, this is a red herring because even if every Chinese citizen were to acknowledge that Chinese claims to Tibet stem from 18th Century Qing imperialism, you still would not recognize them as valid. You really don’t realize how hypocritical you are, as you have all but admitted that you certainly aren’t ever renouncing your Canadian citizenship and packing up your bags to leave for Europe, but you expect the Chinese do essentially do just that in Tibet.

            Wow, you know that European colonists didn’t treat First Nations people that well. Great. Are you going to leave Canada for Europe? No? Then don’t expect Chinese people to do what you won’t do.

          • Ludovici

            Alex, I agree with most of what you write.

            Basically, we all want glory for our country – Let me be blunt: I am a National Socialist, a racist, a fascist and an anti-democrat.

            China won Tibet, it is a part of China – End of, as someone who believe in pan-racial nationalism and GENUINE diversity (not multiculturalism), I think the best thing China could do to would be to help protect the Tibetan language and culture at this stage, but there is no disputing that China has won Tibet and pushing for movements that quite obviously aim to undermine territorial integrity threatens the harmony of the world as a whole.

            You are wrong about the First Nations peoples though, I must clarify here. In most cases it’s a noble savage type lie that Europeans mistreated them. The conflict in New England, the sites of the first colonies was begun by the Indians – King Philip’s War for reference, not by Europeans.

          • Alex Dương

            Let me be blunt: I am a National Socialist, a racist, a fascist and an anti-democrat.

            Interesting. I don’t often interact with people who so bluntly admit to being neo-Nazis.

            In most cases it’s a noble savage type lie that Europeans mistreated
            them. The conflict in New England, the sites of the first colonies was
            begun by the Indians – King Philip’s War for reference, not by
            Europeans.

            I can’t agree with this in general or with your specific example.

          • Ryan

            Wow.
            In 1911 Tibetans rebelled against the last of the Qing. The Qing governor was executed. The Han Chinese were being slaughtered.
            You may not know about any of that, because your country censors the internet and only allows you to know what they WANT you to know.
            You say “Mongolia lost their claim when China rebelled against them and kicked them out”.
            Okay. THE SAME HOLDS TRUE FOR WHEN TIBET KICKED OUT THE QING AND THE HAN!!!!!
            30 years later (and numerous Chinese governments later), a communist dictatorship invaded that independent country. Regardless of your spin.

            And all your comparisons to Britain are expected. It’s always what happens. Chinese people are simply incapable of talking about Tibet without trying to distract the conversation away from the obvious Chinese crimes.

            Here’s the difference. British people ACKNOWLEDGE wrongdoings of the past. Many even see it as their countries responsibility to try and compensate for some of the crimes of the past.
            But you and most other Chinese people (brought up under a dictatorship that controls the media) don’t acknowledge any wrong doing in Tibet. You instead use spin and rhetoric to try and rationalize an inherent right to do whatever you want to those people.

            Imagine a North American you were debating with said “it’s our inherent right to rule over first nations. There was no wrong doing” What would you think of those people? Well, that’s what sensible people (not brainwashed by a censoring government) think about your opinions of Tibet.

            If you were to say; “ok, our communist dictatorship had no right to invade that independent country in 1949 and it was an international crime. However, here we are almost 70 years later and it’s just no plausible that our government would hand this land back over. Realistically, that’s not going to happen. But our government should be open to middle ground solutions that are fair for both Tibet and China”.
            Yeah, if you wrote something like that, a very civil conversation would transpire, free of brainwashed people brought up under censored governments.

            But you deny any wrong doing. You’ve created a borderline PSYCHOTIC argument in your attempt to rationalize your governments reprehensible behavior. You are behaving, if I can put it bluntly, EXACTLY the way your government WANTS you and has TRAINED you to act when they censored everything about it and indoctrinated you when you were young.

          • Alex Dương

            You may not know about any of that, because your country censors the internet and only allows you to know what they WANT you to know.

            Believe it or not, if you actually bother to open a book on Tibet written by a third-party researcher not affiliated with either the Chinese Communist Party or the Tibetan Government in Exile, you’d find that the facts as a whole don’t support either side’s version of the story. The truth is way more complex and way more interesting than either Beijing or Dharamsala make it out to be.

            30 years later (and numerous Chinese governments later), a communist dictatorship invaded that independent country. Regardless of your spin.

            Once again, you imply that from 1912 to 1951, modern China recognized Tibetan independence and then suddenly decided that Tibet was Chinese all along. That is wrong. Read Lin Hsiao-Ting’s work on this issue. He documents that the ROC took every effort to maintain its claim to Tibet even as China faced civil war and war with Japan.

            This matters because it disproves your narrative: modern China, Nationalist or Communist, NEVER recognized Tibetan independence. Ever. Nor was it ever forced to recognize Tibetan independence / renounce its claims to Tibet. And that brings us to the next point…

            Here’s the difference. British people ACKNOWLEDGE wrongdoings of the past. Many even see it as their countries responsibility to try and compensate for some of the crimes of the past.

            Do you know what a red herring is? Because that’s what you’re doing every time you claim that you or others “acknowledge wrongdoings of the past.” We’ve already established, repeatedly, that even if Chinese people were to accept that Chinese claims to Tibet stem from 18th Century Qing imperialism, you still would not recognize the claims as valid.

            Why does this matter? Because it really doesn’t matter in the slightest that you “acknowledge wrongdoings of the past” done by European colonists to First Nations people in Canada if you aren’t going to move back to wherever your ancestors are from in Europe. It is hypocritical to expect and even demand that other people do what you refuse to do yourself.

            But you and most other Chinese people (brought up under a dictatorship that controls the media) don’t acknowledge any wrong doing in Tibet.

            Correction: if you want to say that the Chinese government doesn’t treat the Tibetan people well insofar as they restrict many personal (including political) freedoms, I agree with that. But if you want to say that Chinese claims to Tibet are invalid because they are based on 18th Century Qing imperialism, I can’t agree with that. If you truly believed that, then you’d leave Canada. But you won’t.

            Imagine a North American you were debating with said “it’s our inherent right to rule over first nations. There was no wrong doing” What would you think of those people? Well, that’s what sensible people (not brainwashed by a censoring government) think about your opinions of Tibet.

            You aren’t much different from this hypothetical Canadian. Sure, you “acknowledge” that there was “wrongdoing” in the treatment of First Nations people. And? What then? Is that it? You just “acknowledge” it, and after that, you can stay in Canada with a clean conscience?

            Obviously that’s what you’ve done because you refuse to leave Canada and indeed, scoff at the very idea as stupid. Yet, you DEMAND that the Chinese leave Tibet, and this demand would continue even if all Chinese were to acknowledge that Chinese claims to Tibet originate from 18th Century Qing imperialism. This makes you a hypocrite, as I’ve said repeatedly: you expect others to do what you won’t do yourself.

            If you were to say; “ok, our communist dictatorship had no right to invade that independent country in 1949 and it was an international crime. However, here we are almost 70 years later and it’s just no plausible that our government would hand this land back over. Realistically, that’s not going to happen. But our government should be open to middle ground solutions that are fair for both Tibet and China”.

            I’m not going to say that because it isn’t “my” Communist dictatorship; Tibet wasn’t an independent country; and the reincorporation of Tibet into modern China took place in 1951, not 1949. As for “international crime,” something called the Korean War took place from 1950 to 1953. Why wasn’t there ever a Tibetan War with the U.N. involved?

            Here’s a hint: who represented China in the U.N. until 1971? What did this entity think of an independent Tibet? Here are the answers: the ROC represented China in the U.N. until 1971, and the ROC never relinquished its claim to Tibet. The U.S., not wanting to annoy the non-Communist ROC during the Cold War, didn’t do anything; and the U.K. continued to insist that Tibet was under Chinese suzerainty.

            The bottom line is simple: you are a hypocrite. You don’t discuss in good faith. And you really don’t know much about Tibet at all beyond some propaganda tracts you read from Tibetan Exile and Tibetan Exile Activist organizations.

          • Eidolon

            What I find incredulous is people’s incapability to accept the fact that all human history, when it comes down to it, is the history of taking land, women, resources, etc. from people weaker than yourselves. What does it matter what excuses China uses to rule Tibet? What excuses did the Europeans and their descendants use to justify the fact that they are ruling an entire continent that they ‘illegally conquered’ from the natives and are never giving back? In US history, I remember phrases eg “Manifest Destiny,” “white man’s burden,” “Christianization”, etc. That’s the European equivalent of “Qing ruled Tibet,” “freeing Tibetan slaves,” and “Chinese man’s burden.”

            There is no ‘just right’ to land except that which is agreed upon between the conquerors themselves. Why did virtually no one recognize Tibet as independent back when it declared independence? Why does virtually no one recognize them as an independent country under Chinese occupation today? Simple, because none of the great powers of the world, each with skeletons in their closet, want to have their own territorial rights challenged, and so shook hands on maintaining the status quo.

            You say the Chinese are brainwashed, yet the alternative – used by the US, Canada, etc. – is to accept that what they did was wrong, and yet still benefit from it. Hypocrisy, instead of denial. Nobody’s ever going to give the natives of the Americas, Australia, etc. their continent back – what Europeans conquered in the age of empires are theirs now and forever. Do you expect the Chinese to hold to a different standard, to give up Tibet simply because they conquered it 50-100 years later than the last European conquest in the Americas? The Chinese have pathetic excuses, but they are no fools.

      • Amused

        The Qing were Manchu, not Chinese.

        • Alex Dương

          That’s too simplistic. While the issue of Qing identity is quite complex, to say that they “weren’t Chinese” ignores that the Qing referred to themselves as “China” (page 8 of the pdf / 9 of the paper). Even if you take a look at the Russian text of the Treaty of Nerchinsk in the 17th Century, the Russians refer to Kangxi as the Chinese Emperor, not as the Manchu Emperor.

          It’s also too simplistic to say that they were fully sinicized, but between these extremes, the full sinicization simplification is still more accurate, as the “Manchu, not Chinese” simplification just can’t explain how the Manchus eventually almost completely lost proficiency in their own language.

          • Amused

            Oh I agree with you that they VERY enthusiastically adopted much of the Chinese culture. This has always been the secret behind China reappearing after being conquered over and over; they make the conquerors Chinese nobility and throw the triumphant leader into the Forbidden City. We all know how useful most(not all) rich Chinese people’s kids are, and what the Forbidden City does to dynasties.

            Doesn’t change the fact that the Manchu weren’t Chinese. If Germany conquered France tomorrow and took up a sudden passion for cheese and ballet, they wouldn’t suddenly be French.

          • Joe

            The French and Germany comparison is not really valid since they are civilizations on equal footing. Manchus were nomadic while China was a established civilization, it would be more like a multicultural Greek and Roman Empire that share the same identity.

          • Amused

            Ok, fair. Did the conquering Huns, Franks, Vandals, and various Goths who picked the bones of Western Rome suddenly become Roman?

          • Joe

            That’s because the various Teutonic tribes and the Gauls were never fully romanized, whereas the Manchus were sinicized when they invaded China. Regardless, the impact of Roman culture is significant still, considering Western European languages namely those of former Roman Gaul and Roman Hispaniola (influenced from Latin) are still considered the Romance languages

          • Paulos

            This entire thread perfectly illustrates how the word “China” itself can muddle a conversation.

            What @haysoosnegro:disqus is saying is that Zhongguo was established as a multi-ethnic state during the Qing dynasty. The extent to whether or not the ruling Manchu became Han is irrelevant. The fact remains that Russia occupied land under the jurisdiction of Zhongguo.

            That being said, the irony of complaining about being forced to concede territory that was originally acquired via forced concession is not lost on me.

          • Alex Dương

            Doesn’t change the fact that the Manchu weren’t Chinese.

            Of course they weren’t Chinese; the question is for how long do you want that statement to hold? They certainly weren’t Chinese when they were at war with the Ming. But as I pointed out, by the time of the Kangxi Emperor, the Qing had already started to refer to themselves as “China.” Flash forward 200ish years later, and you can see that the Qing’s contemporaries viewed it as “China” as well.

            As I acknowledge, full sinicization is also a simplification. Qing identity was quite complex, as the Qing were a multiethnic empire, and its rulers positioned themselves differently to the different groups that made up the empire. But to say that they were “Manchu, not Chinese” ignores too many things, most damningly of which is that the Qing referred to themselves as “China,” and so did their contemporaries.

        • Eidolon

          Both the ROC and PRC regard themselves as successors to the Qing, just with a change in leadership. The proper analogy is with India’s claim to all the territories formerly ruled by the Mughals, but is especially poignant in the case of China because China traditionally viewed itself as a country ruled by a succession of dynasties, not all of which were Chinese. Thus, the idea of dynastic replacement is completely normative to Chinese, as is the idea of keeping a hold of the territory each successive dynasty gains. Qing is therefore just another dynasty of China, and not an altogether different empire. The conclusion follows.

  • Joe

    you’re right, *corrected

  • Alex Dương

    Oh, you’re absolutely right that any claim to Primorsky Krai et al. is irredentist. I don’t dispute that at all.

    But if I understood you correctly, I would not say that an argument that the Qing Empire’s borders at the time the Empire collapsed form the borders of modern China is irredentist. To me, that’s succession of states. I’d add that it seems a bit odd that the ROC would not inherit the borders of its predecessor but would inherit its obligations (e.g. treaties, indemnities, etc.).

  • SixAces

    This is all about “face” isn’t it? Or being able to brag? Do you think some of them walk up to an ugly kid and say “you call that ugly? my second cousin is 10x uglier than you!”. Or see a dog taking a dump, “YOU CALL THAT A DuMP!? I once laid one that was 10 meters long!”.

  • Poodle Tooth

    “If China and Japan share a land border crossing, China’s side will
    definitely be more luxurious, and Japan’s side will be simple.”

    Wabi-shabi

  • Eidolon

    It’s because you’re telling half the story. Sun Yatsen changed his mind after realizing that China without the extra territories conferred to it by the Qing was vulnerable to all sorts of geopolitical bullying by the empires of the day. In light of that, the ROC was eventually founded on the principle of being a multi-ethnic state, ergo Manchu became full fledged ROC citizens. See: Five Races Under One Union. Even the ROC flag had five stripes for five peoples, one of which were the Manchus.

  • Nikolai Kalinovski

    Yeah I’m Russian and they definitely don’t show that border post in Russia.

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