By ZHOU YONGKANG
The news that some 154 Chinese citizens are still unaccounted for on the missing Flight MH370 was greeted with stoicism in the Zhou household.
“Chinese people disappear the whole time,” I grumbled to my wife. “Why all the fuss this time?”
I should know. As China’s former domestic security chief, I made people vanish on a regular basis. Do I have blood on my hands? No. I left the rough stuff to others. But I tell you one thing: no one ever complained.
Let’s just say since a Certain Person took over, standards have been slipping. Take the Kunming Incident about a week ago – over 30 people killed by knife-wielding assailants, according to media reports. That would never have happened under my watch. The media reports, I mean.
And now everyone is talking about this missing plane. They have many questions; I just have one.
What about me? I’ve all but vanished from the public eye for nearly six months. And I’m only the guy who used to run China’s entire state-security apparatus. Yes – I’m just the poor sap who practically kept this whole shitshow on the road. That’s all. What do I get? Not even a frigging helicopter.
Did someone at the New York Times run an article about the extraordinary wealth of my immediate family? Let’s see – no. Did Bloomberg forensically analyze the billion-dollar estate of my closest relatives? Let me check… oh, that’s right: no, they damn well didn’t! Yet it’s me, old Square Head, who’s under investigation for “violating Party discipline.”
Those goddamn hypocrites. The years I must have spent hanging out with boring oligarchs, petty officials, homogeneous petrochemical barons, all in anticipation of a quiet but comfortable retirement – what about them?
Whenever anyone wanted a journalist silenced, a petitioner detained or a human-rights lawyer badly beaten, who would they come to? That’s right: Old Zhou, that’s who. And all I ever asked for in return was a chance to spend all the millions in funds that I quietly salted away over the decades of iron-fisted rule.
Instead I get placed under house arrest. They even pinched my beloved son, Zhou Bin, and accused him of corruption, too. Truly a chip off the old block.
And despite giving the best years of my life to this country, there’s not been a ripple of protest in China! I certainly don’t have multiple press conferences, or families grieving at a fancy downtown hotel. No one’s sent any warships looking for me, or offered me free flights to Malaysia. Granted, several investigations have been launched but they seem to be targeting, rather than vindicating me.
It’s enough to make me think that people simply don’t care that their favorite granite-faced, steely-eyed law enforcer has finally been given a taste of his own rough justice.
If so, that’s sad news indeed.
When it comes to the point that senior Communist Party leaders are being held to account for their illegal and immoral actions, then honestly, it’s not the China I know any longer. And it’s certainly not a Communist Party I want to be a member of.
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