Maria Holland

Archive for May, 2012|Monthly archive page

UA898

In Uncategorized on May 4, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Hopefully you all are aware of the escape of Chinese human rights activist Chen Guangcheng and subsequent international political drama surrounding his treatment.  If you’re not, read up – it comes off as quite the thriller, what with him pretending weakness only to escape in the middle of the night, when his blindness actually gave him an advantage.

I just wanted to share a paragraph from an article that I found particularly interesting, talking about the surreptitious ways the Chinese have come up with to refer to him without censorship:

First he was “blind lawyer;” then “blind man,” then “A Bing,” a reference to a nationally famous blind singer. All were blotted out by the Chinese government’s pervasive, highly computerized security apparatus. Lately, his plight has been referred to as “UA898” — the daily United Airlines flight from Beijing to Washington which, this week, has come to symbolize Mr. Chen’s demand to emigrate to the United States rather than face an uncertain future in his homeland.

Who says the Chinese aren’t creative?