Pro-Democracy Blogger stabbed to death in China

Freedom of speech is an action that can warrant you death in China, Tiananmen Square evidently proved that a decade ago, It was again in play when a prominent Chinese blogger was stabbed and wounded during a book reading by two men who may have been seeking revenge for his provocative writings.

Xu Lai, a newspaper writer and novelist who is widely known for his provocative blog, was attacked on Saturday in a restroom by the men shortly after speaking at a central Beijing bookstore called One Way Street, a frequent gathering place for Chinese literati.

According to friends who spoke to him afterward, the men threatened to cut off his hand. The friends asked to remain unidentified because it was a sensitive case.

Xu’s editor at the Beijing News, Xiao Sanlang, said that Xu was still in the hospital on Sunday but that his wounds were not life-threatening. “We still don’t know why it happened,” he said.

According to Xiao, the attackers said, “We’re here to take revenge” before stabbing Xu in the stomach. The assailants escaped.

 

In a country where violence against journalists is rare, the bold assault stirred fears and a flurry of rumors. Some people suggested that the attack may have stemmed from Xu’s writings, many of which take swipes at government corruption or poke fun at the ruling Communist Party. In recent days, some of the posts on Xu’s blog included satirical items on censorship, the melamine milk scandal and the fire that destroyed part of the CCTV complex in Beijing last week.

Until last month, Xu’s blog, ProState in Flames, was carried by Bullog, a liberal Web site that was shut down by the government. Although his writings are sometimes deleted, his posts often draw 130,000 hits.

The incident was covered by newspapers and scores of Web sites. Many people, in dozens of posted comments, worried that the attack reflected a growing intolerance of dissent.

“This kind of ‘battle without gunpowder’ will probably become more severe as time goes on,” said one blogger who goes by the name of Rainforest.

In the comments area of Xu’s blog, one reader expressed a defiance that was reflected in many postings: “Comrades, netizens, such a despicable trick cannot stop the progress of Chinese people toward freedom and democracy.”

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8 Comments

  1. Would it perhaps be appropriate to change the title then?

  2. Thank you for your comment James and sure give me one reason and I certainly would change the title.

  3. My god, Xu Lai was being stabbed, are we living in Wen Yiduo’s era. (Wen was a poet and an activist in May 4 movement, he was assassinated by Kuomintang in 1945 after a public talk.)

  4. Xu was also a nominee for the best Chinese blog in the 2005 BoB award organized by Deutsche Welle. Though his blog was shut down by censors last November, he immediately reopened another blog, “Qianliexian Still Wants to Speak” on ifeng.com on November 24. Xu Lai didn’t have any private enemies, it’s just like China has returned to the 1940s and what KMT did to journalists, but it’s the 21st century now.

  5. .
    But will these stabbing wacko monkeys be caught? And what were they referring to?
    .
    absurd thought –
    God of the Universe says
    outlaw critical writing

    that challenges conventions
    political correctness

    .
    absurd thought –
    God of the Universe says
    outlaw most poetry

    register all writers
    make them pay huge fees

    .
    absurd thought –
    God of the Universe says
    outlaw most bloggers

    license all the rest
    monitor their writing
    .

  6. LOL nice piece of poetry, US space, it so blends with the feeling of Xu’s stabbing.

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