Zhao Ziyang's Tiananmen Square speech

Chinese Communist Party General Secretary Zhao Ziyang visiting and talking to protesting students gathered on Tiananmen Square before the June 4th  Incident

Date: May 19, 1989

Location: Tiananmen Square, Beijing. China

The year that will be 2009

More than for George W Bush, having a shoe thrown in his face is ominous for the Chinese Premier.

Popularised by the Iraqi journalist now seeking asylum for fear of persecution, shoe-throwing has become the preferred manner of displaying political opposition. Bush showed much agility, dodging the offending footwear better than he has his other critics. Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao didn't quite get a chance to match that, since the sneaker missed him by more than an arm's length.

Don't tell the Japanese instant noodles is really Chinese!

In 2000, the Japanese public voted instant noodles as the most important food invented in the 20th century. Little do they know that it was invented by a Chinese.

It is on record that Momofuku Ando (above) of Osaka, the founder of the giant food concern Nissin Food Products, invented instant noodles in 1958. What is almost never mentioned is that Ando, now 98, was born a Chinese named Wu Bai-fu.

How Wen Jiabao likes his noodles

Fearing political unrest due to runaway inflation, China's Prime Minister Wen Jiabao has made scapegoats out of noodle makers.

"China has 1.3 billion people. When you multiply a small problem 1.3 billion times, it becomes a huge problem." Wen Jiabao, China's Prime Minister, made that statement two years ago. Today he has his hands full dealing with exactly such a problem.


Country: CHINAchina

Capital:  Beijing

Jaded in Japan

Has something become lost in translation for this gaijin mouse?

In 1998, when the beleaguered Hong Kong government started talking to the Walt Disney Company for a theme park in the territory, it probably looked to Tokyo Disneyland as a model for emulation. Unfortunately it is the wrong model.

Do it for Darfur

Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett is being urged to divest his company's PetroChina holdings.

Last June, Warren Buffett was hailed as one of the most generous men in history after he pledged US$30 billion to charity, with five-sixths of it going to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Now he has been smeared in the press and on the Internet as a supporter of the Darfur genocide in Sudan. And it is all because of China.

Ocean Park vs Disneyland

Under the sea, under the sea,

Darling, it's better, down where it's wetter...

(Under the Sea, from Disney's "The Little Mermaid")

Hong Kong's most famous theme park seems to indicate that under the sea is better than anything above.

In France, the Euro Disneyland is so popular that politicians fret about it undermining traditional French values. In Japan, the Tokyo Disneyland (together with its neighbour, DisneySea) is the best-performing theme park, drawing 25 million visitors a year, almost all of them Japanese. But when it comes to Hong Kong, the entire Disneyland cast, from Mickey Mouse to Donald Duck, has lost out to a bunch of jellyfish.