Cleared Out Cliques To Target Zhou Yongkang
Former member of Standing Committee, Zhou Yongkang,
has recently been losing his confidants in the oil industry,
Politics and Law Committee as well as in the business world,
as they have been removed one after another.
Rumors say that the Chinese Communist Party (CCP)’s
top-levels have formed an investigation team to handle Zhou.
Zhou’s name recently appeared in an obituary for Wang Ning,
a Guangdong disciplinary department secretary.
Several sources revealed that Zhou Yongkang’s confidants
have been almost fully cleared out.
Analysts say that the investigation on Zhou is speeding up.
On September 5, state-owned media The People’s Daily
said that Wang Ning’s funeral was held in Guangzhou.
Outside observers found Zhou Yongkang to be listed
among the CCP leaders to pay tribute to Wang’s death.
The CCP is always very particular with name list rankings.
On Wang’s death obituary list, Zhou was supposed to be
listed 23rd on the list, behind former premier Wen Jiaobao.
However, Zhou was listed 29th, followed by someone
who had never been a member of the politburo.
After Zhou Yongkang’s retirement, his name has
disappeared from media for a long time.
Since April, Zhou’s name has been mentioned only four times
in reports by CCP mouthpiece media, and the reports that
he is mentioned in are often related to someone’s death.
Apart from Wang Ning’s funeral, a funeral was held in August
for Liu Xiyao, Sichuan provincial Party committee secretary.
Zhou sent a wreath with his name.
When Zhou Kaida, rice expert and scholar of the
Chinese Academy of Sciences, died in July
Zhou’s name also appeared on his death obituary list.
The only time Zhou’s name didn’t link
with a death was in April, when he visited Suzhou
primary school where he had studied before.
Zhong Weiguang, political commentator: “Amid the CCP’s
history of infighting, it is difficult to judge whether one’s
freedom and good name today won’t be taken away tomorrow.
The final decision on how to deal with Zhou
depends upon the results of the CCP’s infighting.
If Zhou’s faction loses, he’ll immediately be in deep trouble."
For example, on the last day of the CCP’s two sessions in 2012,
Bo Xilai, former Chongqing secretary, spoke confidently
in front of the media, yet by the next day
the CCP announced his removal.
Before the CCP labeled Liu Shaoqi as a “spy, public thief,
and traitor", he was the CCP’s Chairman.
Former vice Chairman Lin Biao and Chairman
Hua Guofeng also had similar fates.
On September 2, Hong Kong’s Apple Daily cited sources as
saying the central disciplinary department has implemented
Beidaihe’s decision to investigate Zhou Yongkang.
The report said that Zhou is now under house arrest.
On Sept.4, Reuters cited insiders as saying that
Zhou is cooperating with the investigation.
North America’s Sina website cited Australian Daily
Chinese Herald as saying Cao Jianming, Procurator-General
of the Supreme People’s Procuratorate is under investigation.
Cao was one of the of Political and Law Committee’s major
members during Zhou’s tenure, and a key person in his faction.
Another of Zhou’s henchmen, Li Dongsheng, Central 610 Office
head and deputy Public Security minister, now faces investigation.
Fei Liangyong, president of federation for a Democratic China:
“Zhou Yongkang is a heinous criminal.
He started with persecuting Falun Gong, and has been
accumulating bloody-debts by ruthlessly suppressing dissidents.
When he served as secretary of the Politics and Law Committee,
he has committed many crimes.
He had also worked in the oil industry for over 30 years,
and he took the lead in making the industry become very corrupt.
Whether it’s seen from political, economic or legal perspectives,
a trial is in order for Zhou."
After Bo Xilai denied charges in court, the authorities
have announced that Wang Yongchun and other top officials
of China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC)
would be placed under investigation.
Within two days, four officials of the CNPC were sacked,
astonishing the public.
Jiang Jiemin, former president of CNPC and Zhou’s confidant,
is also under investigation for alleged
“serious disciplinary violations".
On August 1, Sichuan tycoon Wu Bing was arrested
in Beijing’s Western Railway Station.
Outsiders believe that Wu was in charge of
handling the Zhou family assets.
Zhang Jian, China affairs scholar:
“Zhou Yongkang’s problem is deep-rooted and very complex.
He is a real ‘big tiger,’ and his allies pervade all of China,
including the many people overseas with connections
to the Politics and Law Committee.
If Zhou follows Bo Xilai’s footsteps, it will, as we have seen,
cause further public unrest."
Outsiders noticed that Zhou’s cliques
are almost cleared out.
Beijing observer Cheng Ziming says that many signals show
that the investigation on Zhou is moving forward.
How Zhou will be punished
depends on the investigation’s progress.
Fei Liangyong says that the CCP is very crafty,
because the CCP regime is formed by corrupt officials,
Looking from the current political situation, it is hard to say
if the authorities will immediately take Zhou down.