Hu Jintao shadow over Xi Jinping’s ‘dare to win’ 3rd term

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By Manish Anand

New Delhi, October 22: Former President of China Hu Jintao was lifted, pushed and thrown out of the last day of the 20th Communist Party Congress in the Great Hall of People. Hu didn’t look unwell, for he gave a firm pat on Prime Minister Li Keqiang’s shoulder after speaking a few words to President Xi Jinping, who was seated beside him.

The live video footage of Hu’s humiliation on the order of Xi, for it was a key aide of the Chinese President, who presided over the eviction of the veteran communist leader. The chain of events clearly demonstrate that there is strong discontent among the Communist veterans against Xi breaking the well-established ceiling of a maximum of two terms.

The China observers are of the opinion that Hu too would be the victim of Xi’s widespread purge of the Communist members who have not cheered the usurpation of the sweeping powers by the Chinese President. Hu was President of China for two terms, and presided over the peaceful transition of power to Xi in 2012. Hu was also repressive of the dissents in China, particularly Tibet, but he is well known for collective leadership and reforms in economy with non-confrontationist approach with the world powers.

Under the watch of Hu, the Chinese economy gained from the investments by the US, and the developed countries, which helped China emerge as the global factory. But Hu was thrown out of the Great Hall of the People before Xi made his 105-minute long speech. Hu must not have agreed to Xi’s taking the third term in a dictatorial transition in the Communist Party, as the Chinese President would be packing the politburo with his loyalists, a trend that has been set for the past many years.

Many commentators are drawing parallel of Hu’s eviction to the purge carried out by Joseph Stalin in Russia, Saddam Hussain in Iraq in his party in 1979, the North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un and so on. Xi’s dictatorship is built on the People’s Liberation Army that he has created to function with loyalty to him, which is alleged to be carrying out executions of the dissidents.

True to all dictators seen in the history, Xi’s speech at the closing ceremony of the 20th Communist Congress sought to whip the fear psychosis in China, as he spoke of “…we must be ready to withstand high winds, choppy waters and even dangerous storms”. Xi sought to invoke the western threat to justify assuming the third term, as he referred to “blackmails, blockade and contain”.

Indeed, Xi’s target in his speech was the US, which has stepped up efforts to challenge the Chinese hegemony in the Indo Pacific in partnership with a resurgent Japan and India that is seen emerging as the key rival of Beijing in the economic, strategic and diplomatic affairs.

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