Monday, February 25, 2002
Disappointed, but not surprised: If Chinese citizens wanted to hear all of what President Bush said last week, they better have watched it on television, because it's not appearing in the paper.
BEIJING -- The Chinese government responded to President Bush's call for religious tolerance Friday by promptly editing out his remarks on freedom and faith in its transcript of a speech that Bush delivered on live national television.
Before the U.S. leader had even boarded Air Force One to return to Washington on Friday afternoon, China's state-controlled media put out their version of the morning address, in which Bush spoke to an audience of university students.
Almost half the speech--large chunks extolling American liberty and urging China to relax its political and religious restrictions--was simply hacked out in the transcript released by the official New China News Agency. The heavy censorship prompted indignant complaints on the Internet from people who demanded that the full text be restored. "Why must the New China News Agency kid itself?" someone using the name Crawler asked in one chat room. "Does striking out someone's words mean the person never said them?"
Others took to posting the censored portions for others to read. "The Chinese media always distort the facts," another cyber-citizen wrote. "Everyone ought to compare the live remarks with the subsequent transcript."
You can read the entire story here.