Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Pyramid scheme

Confession: I don't remember learning about the Cairo Conference of November 27, 1943, when plans for the postwar peace in Asia were discussed. So I don't remember who was there. If I were in China right now I might think the star of the occasion was Mao Zedong.

The image at left is one of several spoofs apparently making the rounds of the Chinese web, lampooning the poster for the newly released movie 开罗宣言 Cairo Declaration; the cats replace an image of the actor playing Mao. In fact, the Cairo Conference brought together Churchill, Roosevelt and Chiang Kai-Shek; Mao wasn't there - and why should he have been? China wasn't his yet. This would be funny - a little worse than making the Stonewall Riot a gay white male party - except it's not. The Economist has a scary cover editorial about the way the 70th anniversary of the defeat of Japan is being spun in Beijing, but the better read is their longer piece, "The Unquiet Past: Asia's Second-World-War Ghosts." War ended, but peace has yet to be made.

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