Beijing usually takes pride in its tight grip of the information that flows inside and outside of China. However, several recent incidents seem to reveal that Beijing’s iron fist may be losing its grip.
Only a week ago, The New York Times reported on the Xinjiang Papers, a 403-page collection of reportedly classified Chinese documents—including speeches by Chinese leader Xi Jinping and other Communist Party officials—on plans to carry out the mass incarceration of the Uyghur Muslim minority population in Xinjiang, as well as government directives instructing local officials on how to coerce Uyghur students with lies and threats. We were told by the reporters that the leak of such classified documents out of China was unprecedented.
While the world was still digesting the Xinjiang Papers, two more China-related intelligence information bombs were dropped over the last weekend. …
… Wang’s extremely public disclosure of China’s foreign espionage activities, in addition to the recent intelligence leak out of China, seem to suggest a growing opposition from within China that is unhappy with Chinese leader Xi’s repressive domestic agenda and his aggressive foreign policies. The timing of all of these leaks might have been emboldened by the obvious fallout of Xi’s policies: a slowing economy and rising unemployment rates as the result of the trade war with the United States; rising food prices partially caused by China’s own hog industry experiencing the worst African swine fever in decades; and Xi’s evident inability to deal with the pro-democracy movement in Hong Kong, which has been going on for six months and is still going strong.