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| September 5, 2017 | 0 Comments

Poor old Pooh Chinese bloggers and other “netizens” have been having a great deal of fun comparing Winnie the Pooh to their president. Reports the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), “When Xi Jinping and Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe [recently] endured one of the more awkward handshakes in history, netizens responded with Winnie the Pooh and Eeyore shaking hands. “And then there was the time President Xi popped his head out of the roof of his special Red Flag limousine to inspect the troops – a photo appeared online of a toy Winnie the Pooh popping out of his own little car.”

Now, what BBC journalist Stephen McDonell calls “The Great Firewall of China” has blocked such images, and banned the use of pictures of Winnie the Pooh outright. China’s online censors are good at what they do. Says McDonell, “The Chinese authorities can just punch certain words or phrases into whatever blocking mechanism they use and shut down discussion of a topic.” This happens even with privately owned consortiums, like the digital chat service WeChat. T

hat dastardly Pooh bear has been in trouble in China before. He’s now a dangerous entity, says McDonell, because China “is now in the run-up to the forthcoming Communist Party Congress. “The meeting takes place every five years and, amongst other things, sees the appointment of the new Politburo Standing Committee: the now seven-member group at the top of the Chinese political system.” Xi Jinping cannot afford to let anything threaten his position, not even a soft, cuddly fictional bear whose sole aim in life is to acquire happiness and honey

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