Saturday, August 30, 2008

Uyghur Attacking Uyghur in Xinjiang Province, Western China

One of the most intriguing situations to happen in China is not an economics miracle story, but a "simmering" violent situation that many have linked to terrorism sponsored by the East Turkestan Liberation Movement.

There are, however, a few details about the latest incident which has caught my attention. First of all is the surprising and most obvious detail of violence by Uyghurs against Uyghurs. This situation is gaining new dimensions… or perhaps it is more appropriate to say that the conflict has always been far more nuanced than the “simmering Uyghurs” summary that is most often put forward by Western media outlets touching base with the region. The fact of the matter is, the Uyghurs’ involvement in Han develoment/colonization on one hand and East Turkestan freedom fighting/terrorism on the other hand is far from black and white. In an area is remote as this one we can expect both a strong anti-Han sentiment, as rural areas tend to be predominantly Uyghur and mostly more traditional, and a local party/government structure that is mostly Uyghur, since, well, there are less Han around to run things. So we see loyal Uyghur police officers falling in the line of duty, and who I believe inevitably will be put forward by the CCP as model minorities and to further reinforce the “extremists on the fringes” model of Uyghur discontent.

Victims of latest Western China violence all Uyghurs

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