In the latest example of corporate America kowtowing to the Communists in Beijing, internal memos and Amazon.com insiders have revealed the company’s continuing appeasement of the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), including colluding with state propaganda operatives to delete reviews of books critical of the regime.
Notably, as reported by Reuters, Amazon caved in like a cheap Mao suit to a CCP edict that it stop allowing negative customer ratings and reviews of the book “Xi Jinping: The Governance of China,” which contains many of Xi’s speeches and writings, as well as other state propaganda.
It gets worse.
Said a company insider, according to Reuters: “I think the issue was anything under five stars.”
Amazon agreed to Beijing’s demand to have anything below a five-star review of Xi Jinping’s book The Governance of China removed from its Chinese site https://t.co/8N3SAXg3rV
— The Times (@thetimes) December 20, 2021
Currently, on the Chinese site Amazon.cn, the government-published book has no customer reviews, ratings, nor even a working “comments” section, all of which are included on other Amazon.com sites.
According to Reuters, Amazon’s compliance with the Chinese government demand, which has not been previously reported, is part of a deeper, decade-long effort by the company to win favor with the ChiComs and protect Amazon’s growing business in one of the world’s largest marketplaces.
Let’s step out of this report for a minute and think about the hypocrisy, here.
While Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos has been described as a libertarian, facts say otherwise. He is a yuuge supporter of gay marriage and has spent millions defending it. His political donations go almost exclusively to the Democrat Party. Bezos in 2017 was presented with the Equality Award by the Human Rights Campaign for his longstanding support of the LGBTQ community.
Understand me, here. I am not criticizing Bezos for any of the above.
What I am doing is pointing to Bezos’s obscene, inexcusable hypocrisy in submitting to a decree from the CCP to censor criticism of a brutal dictator who interns and commits genocide against the Muslim-minority Uyghurs in Xinjiang, a large region of China’s northwest, violates agreements and crushes democracy in Hong Kong, and threatens “reunification” — the invasion and annexation of Taiwan.
Amazon, which routinely censors conservative speech, partnered with China propaganda arm. Owner Jeff Bezos also owns the Washington Post, which also publishes Chinese propaganda in special “China Daily” inserts. https://t.co/kX1yvnkxhU
— Mollie (@MZHemingway) December 20, 2021
Even worse? Bezos is doing this solely for money. How blatant Democrat hypocrisy of him.
Anyway, reports Reuters, an internal 2018 Amazon briefing document that describes the company’s China business lays out a number of damning “Core Issues” the Seattle-based company has faced in China. Among them, according to the document:
Ideological control and propaganda is the core of the toolkit for the Communist party to achieve and maintain its success. We are not making a judgment on whether it is right or wrong.
Of course, not. I already spelled it out: money over principle.
Moreover, that is an incredible and despicable admission from Amazon.
Amazon admits ideological control and propaganda are core tools of the CCP, then promptly announces it looks the other way. Have I mentioned money?
The briefing document, along with interviews with more than two dozen people who have been involved in Amazon’s China operation, detail how Amazon has not only survived but thrived in China by actively helping to further the CCP’s global economic and political agenda, according to Reuters.
In a core element of this strategy, the internal document and interviews show, Amazon partnered with an arm of China’s propaganda apparatus to create a selling portal on the company’s U.S. site, Amazon.com – a project that came to be known as “China Books.”
The venture – which eventually offered more than 90,000 publications for sale – hasn’t generated significant revenue. But the document shows that it was seen by Amazon as crucial to winning support in China as the company grew its Kindle electronic-book device, cloud-computing and e-commerce businesses.
Have you visited the “China Books” section on Amazon.com.? Neither had I.
— Hold My Beer (@RealLibSmacker) December 26, 2021
Among the links on the site are: “Best Seller,” “Governance of China,” “China’s Battle Against the Pandemic“ (emphasis, mine), “Chinese History,” and “Youth Literature.”
One available book extols life in Xinjiang, where even the United Nations has accused China of interning one million ethnic Uyghurs in a network of work camps. The book – “Incredible Xinjiang: Stories of Passion and Heritage” – discusses an online comedy show situated in the region. The book quotes an actor who plays a Uyghur “country bumpkin” claiming ethnicity is “not a problem” there, the official lying position of Beijing, which has denied mistreating minority groups — and it is obscene.
Another even more obscene example is books that portray China’s “battle” against the COVID-19 pandemic — almost certainly unleashed on the world by an accidental lab leak from the infamous Wuhan Institute of Virology — in heroic terms.
One such book is titled “Stories of Courage and Determination: Wuhan in Coronavirus Lockdown.” Another begins with commentary from Xi: “Our success to date has once again demonstrated the strengths of CPC (the Communist Party of China) leadership and Chinese socialism.”
And Amazon not only turns a blind eye; Jeff Bezos’s company aids and abets the ChiComs’ efforts.
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