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The Meaning of Liu

From the archive: This story is more than 10 years old.

Comic: Human Rights

The Meaning of Liu

Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, serving an 11-year prison sentence for “inciting subversion of state power”, was yesterday awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.

The Chinese government is infuriated, of course, but sadly, most Chinese won't much care. There is money to be earned, flat screen TVs to be purchased, lifestyles to be upgraded. Democracy? Decidedly surplus to requirements.

And for the few Chinese who do care about human rights, and the fewer who are actively working to bring them to China, Liu's award will very probably mean even tighter surveillance of and controls on their activities.

Roberto De Vido is a communications consultant, writer, cartoonist and jack of many trades. The former chief of Tucson Sentinel’s East Asia Bureau, he now lives in California (make of that what you will).

“We put Wei Jingsheng behind bars, didn’t we?”

— former Chinese premier Deng Xiaoping, boasting about China's disregard for Western concerns about its human rights record

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