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Openness in China? Get real!

August 09, 2008

I ENJOYED David Sarno's Web Scout column [" 'Great Firewall' Stands Despite Beijing's Vows," Aug. 6] because it demonstrated that liberal journalists have learned nothing from the history of the 20th century, it seems.

Journalists seem shocked that the Chinese government was lying when it promised free and open Internet access during the Olympic Games. Well, what did you guys expect? China is a dictatorship. It's a totalitarian government. Of course they lied. Did you actually think that they would let the Internet be completely accessible during the Games?

I'm sure the late Alexander Solzhenitsyn would be grimly amused by the continuing naivete of Western liberal journalists.

Richard Zuelch



RE "Ethics' Place in a Building Boom," by Christopher Hawthorne, Aug. 5: To point out the obvious -- that China is a totalitarian state -- doesn't explain why Western architects should have ethical qualms about working there. What creates the dilemma is that in so doing, they are helping entrench a repressive regime.

In pursuit of the almighty buck, or yen or euro, architects are creating monuments to communism that China's leaders will point to as proof of their membership in the civilized world. What's next on the agenda? Cuba? North Korea?

Julius "Jay" Wachtel

Garden Grove

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