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China's hard power and hurt feelings

No perceived slight is too small for Beijing to start throwing its weight around


China's Communist authorities must consider their 1.3 billion citizens as exceptionally fragile souls, prone to having their feelings hurt at the smallest slight. Not only are Chinese restricted from openly saying what they want, they also must be protected from any form of offensive speech that might cause undue anxiety.

As anyone who deals with or lives in the realm of the Chinese Communist Party knows, "hurting the feelings of the Chinese people" has become the common admonition against transgressors, repeated countless times since the phrase first appeared in the Communist lexicon in 1959.

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