Ai Weiwei's 'Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn' (1995). Photo: AP Photo/Keystone/Steffen Schmidt

Anything you can smash, I can smash better

20 February 2014 7:00

Art is under attack. Another week, another expensive poke in the eye. Last Sunday, Miami artist Maximo Caminero destroyed a $1 million vase by Ai Weiwei in protest at the… Continue reading


Will China kill all of Africa’s elephants?

13 February 2014 14:30

In 2010, Aidan Hartley, our ‘Wild Life’ columnist and Unreported World presenter, asked in his feature below: ‘Will China kill all Africa’s elephants?’ And, as I type, politicians from over 50… Continue reading

Pigs in their pen in Chengdu, China. Image: Getty

The mutant meat industry

7 February 2014 14:11

When it emerged that there was horsemeat in cheap burgers, some people thought it might spark a revolution in the British meat industry. Now that the public are more aware… Continue reading

There may be trouble ahead (Photo: Getty)

China’s banking problems are snowballing — fast

24 January 2014 12:02

The world’s largest bank by assets, Beijing-based ICBC, has announced it won’t take full responsibility for a trust investment worth 3-billion yuan (£300 million) that may go bust. In other… Continue reading

David Cameron is following in the footsteps of the Labour and Major governments.

David Cameron’s craven surrender to China follows a pattern

3 December 2013 14:27

‘This week I make a visit to China. I come with a clear ambition: to build a lasting friendship that can become a blueprint for future cooperation between our countries.… Continue reading

Chinese Premier Li Keqiang and David Cameron talk during a signing ceremony inside the Great Hall of the People. Picture: Getty

PM dodges ‘small island’ moment in China

3 December 2013 12:02

David Cameron’s visit to China is rather different to some of his recent trips. Firstly, as Douglas Murray outlined yesterday, he’s not making as big a noise about human rights… Continue reading

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron (L) and China's Premier Li Keqiang shake hands after delivering statements at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing on December 2, 2013. (ED JONES/AFP/Getty Images)

David Cameron has his price: the Dalai Lama or ‘the global race’?

2 December 2013 17:09

David Cameron has taken a trade delegation to see the People’s Republic of China. The hope is obviously to stir up trade for Britain. Nothing wrong with that. Except that when… Continue reading

Dr George Carey reckons that the Anglican Church is doomed, and he should know.

The CofE doomed? Only because it’s surrendered to phony soullessness

19 November 2013 18:10

The Church of England is doomed, Lord Carey has said, warning that Anglicanism is just ‘one generation away from extinction’. To be fair people have been saying this for a… Continue reading

The 'Bounty', a replica of Captain Bligh's vessel which was burned at Pitcairn Island in 1789. Image: Getty

How a marine reserve could make Pitcairn the crown jewel of the South Pacific

18 October 2013 12:35

Last week, while the Mayor of London (pop. 7.8 million) was visiting China, the Deputy Mayor of Pitcairn (pop. 50) was visiting London.  I met Simon Young for afternoon tea… Continue reading


The global race means swallowing pride every so often

14 October 2013 8:43

George Osborne is in Beijing at the moment, drumming up support for Britain in the global race. Although that doesn’t quite work because Britain is obviously racing China in this… Continue reading

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Edward Snowden and the Guardian have started a debate…in the Kremlin and Beijing

11 October 2013 15:14

I was on the Daily Politics earlier, discussing the Guardian / Snowden leaks and debating against a representative from the campaign group ‘Liberty’. The ‘Liberty’ representative kept saying what a… Continue reading

Ed Miliband on a train having his mind broadened. Image: Getty

Ed Miliband needs to get out more

27 September 2013 15:50

They say travel broadens the mind, and Ed Miliband needs to travel more. To China, India and Brazil, but also to South Korea, Mexico, Turkey and Indonesia. If he did… Continue reading

The radical left has long gloried the despots of China and Iran. It has little besides anti-Americanism. (MARK RALSTON/AFP/GettyImages)

Extremists and the mainstream: the case of Comrade Newman

17 September 2013 13:08

The Chippenham Labour Party has decided that its candidate to contest the 2015 general election will be one Andy Newman. As the anti-totalitarian blogs Howie’s Corner and Harry’s Place have… Continue reading

North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un salutes as he watches a military parade to mark 100 years since the birth of the country's founder and his grandfather, Kim Il-Sung. (Ed Jones/AFP/Getty Images)

Korea – the 60 year war

9 July 2013 9:37

In the early morning hours of June 25, 1950 the opening shots of the Korean War were fired. At the time, few could have predicted how seminal this event would… Continue reading

Fireworks light up the night sky above the National Stadium also known as the "Bird's Nest" during the closing ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games on August 24, 2008.(FRANCK FIFE/AFP/Getty Images)

Timothy Beardson interview: It’s urgent that China reforms

25 June 2013 11:32

Recent convulsions in China’s banks will not, I suspect, have surprised Timothy Beardson, a sinophile, veteran Hong Kong financier and author of Stumbling Giant: The Threats to China’s Future. He… Continue reading

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Meet Chen Guangcheng – a hero of the Chinese people

6 June 2013 13:47

The other week I had the honour of spending some time with a great hero. Chen Guangcheng is the blind Chinese human rights activist who made world news last year… Continue reading

Fireworks explode over the stadium during the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games, an event that catalysed the measure of Chinese self-confidence captured in Chan Koon Chung's The Fat Years.

Chan Koon Chung – banned in China

29 May 2013 10:29

Chan Koon Chung’s previous novel, The Fat Years, was set in a gently dystopian Beijing of 2013, when a whole month is missing from the Chinese public’s awareness, and everyone… Continue reading

François Hollande

François Hollande’s great haul of China

27 April 2013 12:41

François Hollande has just completed his visit to China. The two great socialist nations more or less embraced: ‘I look forward to… working with you to make our relationship closer,… Continue reading


Kim Jong-un is the least of Asia’s problems

23 April 2013 19:01

This may look like just a photo of rather boring-looking suits being led by a placid Eastern monk through some Asian temple, but it’s created a furore in South Korea… Continue reading

A fruit seller waits for customers in a wet market in Shanghai. China's economic growth slowed to 7.7 percent in the first quarter, data showed. Picture: Getty

China’s GDP shock may be good for everyone in the long run

16 April 2013 11:27

Is the Chinese economy for turning? The country has reported a ‘shock’ GDP growth of only 7.7 per cent for the fourth quarter. Yes, I know — if only Britain could… Continue reading

A photo released by China's Xinhua news agency shows Hu Jintao shaking hands with the late Kim Jong Il, inside the Great Hall of the People in Beijing 17 January 2006.(AFP/Getty Images)

North Korea nukes — China has a hell of a lot to answer for

5 April 2013 11:51

Let us be clear — Beijing bankrolled this monster. As Kim Jong-un continues his bellicose bluster, now having moved a second missile to North Korea’s east coast, we cannot forget:… Continue reading

An undated photograph, released by North Korean propaganda authorities, of the young Kim addressing soldiers. (KCNA VIA KNS/AFP/Getty Images)

The world should see that North Korea is no laughing matter

3 April 2013 10:14

I found myself snorting with derision last night while watching a news bulletin about the Korean situation. The sight of a Gummy Bear like Kim Jong Un vowing to obliterate… Continue reading

Jose Manuel Barroso, Herman Van Rompuy, and Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao. Image: Getty

Would you prefer to do business with the eurozone or China?

25 March 2013 17:51

Does it really matter now whether the eurozone breaks up or not? The damage may already have been done, in terms of business confidence. A £10 billion bailout for Cyprus… Continue reading

Mo Yan collects the Nobel Prize for Literature last December. Image: Getty

The world has yet to see the best of Chinese literature

13 March 2013 10:18

- Hong Kong  Imagine if every British novel published since the 1940s was about the Second World War. That’s about as accurate a view of contemporary China held by readers… Continue reading

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Launch Of The Royal Navy's Newest Super Submarine

Europe's defence budgets may not be noble, but they are at least rational

19 February 2013 22:34

Gideon Rachmann is unhappy that european defence budgets are still falling: Since 2008, in response to the economic downturn, most big European countries have cut defence spending by 10-15 per… Continue reading