The Enduring Ideological Monism of the Chinese Communist Party

 By Giorgio Strafella. In his last article on this blog, Dr Wang Zhengxu examines the coming changes in the CCP Constitution to prove the CCP’s “continuous evolution toward a normal, secular, governing party.” The current Party Constitution, dated 2002, does not include Hu Jintao’s contribution, “the Scientific Outlook on Development,” which will be added after …

Navigating China: A reflection on the CCTV special performance for 18th CCP Congress

by Tracey Fallon. China watchers are kept busy this week pouring over the speeches and wondering what is going on behind the scenes at the 18th Congress of China’s Communist Party. Due to the secrecy over proceedings, words and actions will be scrutinised for any clues as to what is ahead for China. Here, I …

A New tifa of the Party’s Ideological Foundation?

By Zhengxu Wang. “The Party will not remove ‘Mao Zedong Thought’ from its Constitution. But a change to its ideological formulation shows the Party’s continuous evolution toward a normal, secular, governing party.” Prior to the opening of the Party Congress, a most notable suggestion of possible change that would emerge at the Congress was the …

How to understand the succession in China?

by Steve Tsang. The 18th Party Congress scheduled to start today will determine who will be the leaders of China for the next decade.  But the people of China have no say in who will be selected, or even how they will be selected – not even the 80 million plus members of the Chinese Communist …

Next PLA Shoes to Fall

by Chris Clarke. With the appointment of the two vice chairmen, it now seems clear that outgoing General Armaments Department Director Chang Wanquan, 63, will be the new defense minister, a position that likely will not be formally announced until next March when the National People’s Congress reveals the state and government leadership changes.  Chang …

How Strong is the Public Demand for Political Reform: data from where Xi Jiping used to work

By Dragan Pavlicevic. “While Xi Jinping’s earlier tenure in Zhejiang Province may lead people to see him as a liberal, whether he is ready to introduce political reform once in the country’s top office is far from clear. In fact, in Zhejiang, where many local government innovations are taking place to allow more citizen participation …

Personnel Changes in the Military Leadership First

By Zhengxu Wang. The appointment of two new vice chairmen to the Central Military Committee at the just-closed Plenum shows Hu Jintao is now in fuller control of the succession arrangements for the forthcoming Party Congress. The Central Plenum, the last of the seven between two Congresses, closed over the weekend. By the Communiqué it …

An Election for the Politburo Standing Committee?

By Zhengxu Wang. Something previously deemed utterly unthinkable may indeed take place at this Party Congress. And it relates to the most powerful institution, the Standing Committee of the Politburo (PBSC).  There are indications that, in a major experiment of intraparty political reform, the Party could run an election for the PBSC. Not a full-scaled …

The capacity of the incoming leadership to advance political reform

By Anastas Vangeli. Concerning China’s new leaders, one particularly intriguing question is how they will continue to sustain the Party’s legitimacy through political reform. Political reform is something that has been discussed a lot, but acted little upon. In order to discuss the prospects of political reform, one has to look at the generational features …

CCP’s anti-corruption campaign enters 63rd glorious year; still no shortage of targets

by Jackie Sheehan What is the Chinese for chutzpah? Whatever it is, He Guoqiang, outgoing head of the CCP Central Commission for Discipline Inspection, surely has it, if he can straight-facedly claim the Bo Xilai case as a sign of success for the party’s programme to root out corruption among its officials. He has headed …