Tuesday, 28 December 2010

Foreign Press Reveals Cracks in Chinese Government Propaganda Regarding “China-made” High-Speed Trains

(Written by Ji Mi’ou based on materials translated from the foreign press by He Li) Source: www.aboluowang.com

     Here is an interesting follow-up news item to my previous “Highly Speculative Rant” which puts some more meat on my bone of contention with China’s state media deception.

     China Rail boasts that the high-speed trains springing up across the country, and built with world-class technology, are now completely homemade and were designed and built by a group of Chinese engineers.And yet, it would seem at present, that the sheer intelligence of the engineers who were the creators of this authentic intellectual property has surpassed the level of ability that even China Rail would have us believe. After building these new high-speed trains, which we now see spreading across China, it appears as if they decided to write the operating manual to be used by the train operators in English - not Chinese.
     This minor detail was discovered in an enthusiastic paean entitled “China’s Number One High-Speed Train Operator”, a propagandistic work published by the Chinese Communist Party recounting the achievements of Li Dongxiao.
     When giving an interview for China’s state media, Li Dongxiao talked at length about a bet he had with a German engineer. The German engineer said that Li Dongxiao could not possibly learn how to operate the new “China-made” high-speed train in time to complete the first test-run of the Beijing-Tianjin high-speed railway before the 2008 Olympics. However, as Li Dongxiao explained it, after fighting bravely around the clock and through unremitting efforts, he and his team translated the English operating manual into Chinese in only 9 days and learned how to operate this new-type train. Li Dongxiao had won the bet with that German engineer, but as to why a German engineer was participating in this “China-made” high-speed train project, no explanation was given in related news coverage.
     Even so, Li Dongxiao’s account cannot help but lead one to ask the following question: Why would the Chinese engineers, who invented such advanced high-speed technology, use purely technical English to write an operating manual to provide for Chinese operators who only speak Chinese?
     Another possible explanation is that, as they were eagerly absorbing and digesting railway technology from Siemens, Alstom, Bombardier, Kawasaki Heavy Industries and other foreign companies, somebody forgot that they should have finished translating the operating manuals first before bestowing a “Chinese brand” on the trains.

English translation by Chris Harry