Just as the US is caught up in an unpredictable Republican presidential primary race, China is hosting its own uniquely strange national politics. Here though, of course, things are happening mostly behind the scenes and guessing is the game.
With the country set to change leadership in a transition that begins in March and will likely end next year, things are getting a little noisier and more intriguing. This week, for instance, President Hu lobbed a written bomb at "international hostile forces" bent on Westernizing China. This may seem a bit strange coming from a president under whose leadership China has changed consumerism and material wealth at a staggering pace.
Hu, who did not specify the hostile forces at work, wrote in the Communist Party of China's official journal that Chinese leadership must be on guard for an ideological struggle.
The regime has recently set its sites on further censoring popular culture outlets like television programming.
"We must clearly see that international hostile forces are intensifying the strategic plot of Westernizing and dividing China, and ideological and cultural fields are the focal areas of their long-term infiltration,” Reuters translated Hu's article as saying.
Hu further urged party members to, "always sound the alarms and remain vigilant, and take forceful measures to be on guard and respond."