Bo Xilai blev idømt fængsel på livstid, som jeg skriver her på Kinablog. Nedenunder får du opsamling og links til analyser og kommentarer om sagen.
East Asia Forum har fået John Garnaut til at skrive om dommen og dens betydning:
The rise of Bo Xilai showed that extreme measures may well be necessary to get anything done in an ageing one-party system. His demise, however, shows that Maoist political methods don’t sit easily with a modern economy, an increasingly fragmented political elite and a society that is empowered by prosperity and informed by new networks of information. Several of Xi’s supporters within the elite say it is too early to rule out the possibility that Xi wants to leave China with something closer to a credible legal system than the one he has inherited. Many say he is blasting a path through webs of patronage and a hopelessly self-interested political-bureaucracy to enable urgent economic reforms. Whatever Xi’s plans, it is ironic, and potentially dangerous, that he first has to borrow from Bo’s playbook in order to give himself a chance.
PBS interviewer Orville Schell, der som andre siger, at den populistiske Bo var en trussel, fordi han kortsluttede den politiske proces i kommunistpartiet, hvor man gør karriere gennem studehandler og personlige netværk:
Well it was not only an isolated case about one official who was corrupt, but a very high official whose father was one of the “Eight Revolutionary Immortals” that were part of Mao’s revolution. o this sort of reached back into the deep recesses behind the veil of high party politics.
Bo Xilai was a threat to other leaders because he saw the power base that was outside of the consensual kind of backroom leadership agreements that usually decide who rises. He sought to rally a popular following. And this was very threatening to others in the top leadership.
Guardian har interviewet Roderick Macfarquhar, der er enig med Schell, og forklarer, at det var derfor Bo blev en politisk konkurrent, som præsident Xi Jinping ville have af vejen:
Although no one could have foreseen the spectacular manner of Bo’s fall, it had become clear that rivals and enemies were keen to contain him as the party prepared for the handover of power to a new generation led by Xi Jinping, who was appointed Chinese leader in March.
“Bo was a powerful advocate … he was charismatic and was very definitely – in the post-Deng Xiaoping era – behaving contrary to the normal way,” said Roderick Macfarquhar, an expert on Chinese politics at Harvard University. “I think it’s quite possible that he would have taken advantage of any splits in the politburo standing committee to edge Xi aside.”
New York Times har blandt andre interviewet Li Weidong, som peger på, at det netop på grund af magtkampen ikke handler om en kampagne mod korruption i partiet:
“The life sentence for Bo was a little heavier than many people expected,” said Li Weidong, a former magazine editor in Beijing who often writes about party politics. “He probably angered the leaders by resisting all the charges and pleading innocent. That’s not what toppled officials are generally supposed to do.”
Mr. Xi appears to hope that the punishment of Mr. Bo and other fallen officials will deter corruption, without the need for political changes that would subject leaders to much more intense public scrutiny, Mr. Li said.
“It’s like the emperors who tried to cure corruption without changing the imperial court,” Mr. Li said. “This is not about institutional change; it’s about Xi establishing his image as a clean emperor.”
For many in the Party, the choreography aims to send a message that Mr. Xi now has unrivaled authority over the Party elite—civilian and military—as he prepares to unveil a package of potentially painful economic reforms at an important Party meeting, known as a “plenum,” in November.
“Xi Jinping wants to be a strong leader, but he doesn’t quite have the power he needs yet,” said Zhang Lifan, a Party historian and political analyst. “By dealing with Bo Xilai in this way, he’s sending a clear message ahead of the plenum that he will strike hard at any opponents.”
Mr. Zhang and others in the Party see a conscious attempt to emulate Deng Xiaoping, who launched China’s first market-oriented reforms at a plenum in 1978 after emerging victorious from a protracted power struggle after the death of Chairman Mao Zedong.