By BIELE NINNEI
National Party Congress Correspondent
BEIJING (China Daily Show) – In what many will remember as the clear highlight of a weeklong political rollercoaster, all nine members of China’s outgoing Politburo Standing Committee this morning committed ritual suicide onstage, in front of 4,000 delegates and foreign media at the 18th National Party Congress.
Beginning the action at precisely 9.03am, state security chief Zhou Yongkang stepped forward from the phalanx of dark-suited, indistinguishable politicians, muttered a few words of gruff apology and plunged a carbon steel-alloy yitianjian blade deep into his abdomen, jerking it upwards and moving the blade from left to right, in a sheer slicing motion of textbook seppuku.
“It was an extremely clean kill,” CCTV presenter Yang Rui reported solemnly as, behind him, Central Committee Discipline Inspection Secretary He Guoqiang moved confidently to the podium at the Great Hall of the People, drew forward a curved, singled-edged traditional dao sword and drew it across his throat in a swift but deep slash that severed his jugular and sent thick gouts of arterial blood jetting over grateful delegates, sitting open-mouthed and adoring in the front row.
Long-time China-watchers noted approvingly that, as per Communist tradition, the elderly politicians removed themselves from this mortal coil in the exact order of their rank hypocrisy.
However, the 86-minute-long ceremony of elaborately staged self-slaughter was not without its hitches.
President Hu Jintao had to fire several hollow-point bullets from a customized pearl-handled SR1911 Ruger .45 automatic pistol into his skull before finally slumping to the ground, where his body continued to twitch and inexplicably shower sparks onto the immaculate red carpet for a full two minutes.
And much-loved Premier “Grandpa” Wen Jiabao, whose family is believed to have salted away well over $2 billion during the course of his benevolent leadership, had to be pushed and cajoled onto the stage, before finally agreeing to ram an ancient guan dao spear deep into his bowels and falling to his knees with a pained gasp of surprise and regret.
Analysts agreed that the gory but honorable succession of hara-kiri marked the indisputable high point of this Politburo’s 10-year history and represented an act of supreme patriotism for which they may possibly even be remembered.
However, others warned that the surprise suicides could cast a slight pall over the following day’s next Standing Committee announcement, especially as some of them are now dead by their own hand.
“The pressure is certainly on now for tomorrow’s incoming seven-man Politburo committee to top this spectacular act of self-sacrifice for the motherland,” intoned CCTV’s Yang to the camera. “My most dramatic guess is a true November Surprise: some kind of vague promise for mild economic reform at the municipal level.”
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