Sunday, December 21, 2008

China's Charter 08

"China, as a major nation of the world, as one of five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council, and as a member of the UN Council on Human Rights, should be contributing to peace for humankind and progress toward human rights. Unfortunately, we stand today as the only country among the major nations that remains mired in authoritarian politics. Our political system continues to produce human rights disasters and social crises, thereby not only constricting China's own development but also limiting the progress of all of human civilization. This must change, truly it must. The democratization of Chinese politics can be put off no longer."

This is the English translation of perhaps one of the most important documents in modern Chinese history, by Perry Link.

I have said to friends and in columns and blogposts that if CHina awoke -- not like Napoleon warned, as in economic or political terms, but in intellectual and moral terms -- than we might very well be on the verge of a great transition in society away from the Bushes of the world and toward pragmatic, aware, compassionate and intelligent societies.

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