Protesters run the risk of this little irony. (Image by TIME.)
In Don’t Feed China’s Nationalism, Fareed Zakaria outlines some reasons why a boycott will only make Beijing more defensive and stubborn. With the decline of communist ideology, the CPP relies on nationalist fervor which all the anti-China demonstrations only serve to strengthen. Moreover, Zakaria notes China’s attitude towards Tibet is not unusual, and that associating China with Sudan may be taking the notion of responsibility a little too far. (Not taking responsibility too far would be to mention Guantanamo and Abu Gharib to Americans.) Instead, he believes that the United States is pursuing a wiser track with diplomacy. Nudging China privately will do more wonders than large scale protests.
On the other hand, Jackie Chan labels the negative attention on China as “unfair”. China’s problems — environmental degradation, human rights — is not just China’s but the world’s. What he means by that is that those problems can be found everywhere else, so why the ganging up on China. He’s obviously dodging the question but I’ll still watch his movie.