From essays and testimonials on tobacco-information websites run by the Chinese government. The state monopoly on cigarettes in China provides 10 percent of government revenue; annual sales amount to 1.8 trillion cigarettes, or approximately one third of the total sold worldwide. Translated from the Chinese by Mara Hvistendahl. Originally from Harper’s Magazine, September 2005.
Translation: People often ascribe the inability to quit smoking to a weak will. In reality, it is well known that many great men smoked, like Churchill, Mao Zedong, etc. The smokers all around us now are also people of outstanding character. They have a great deal of determination and strength. The courage that they show in the face of unforeseen events”a courage that many nonsmokers are unable to muster”is unforgettable.