How to Look at China – Thomas L. Friedman
Today, the most relevant fault line in China is Tiger Leaping Gorge, a spectacular geological site in Western China along the Yangtze River, and one of the deepest gorges in the world. With its thunderous rushing waters cutting through mountains, it is certainly one of the most beautiful I have ever seen. I visited there with my camera, but I also visited with some local villagers with my notebook.
These farmers are angry that plans are being made to dam the Yangtze River, flood Tiger Leaping Gorge and force the relocation of thousands of farmers and villagers. And they are getting vocal, learning about their legal options and pressing local officials to reconsider how the dam will be built. Getting political is not a hobby for these farmers. It is a necessity.
And similar dramas of necessity are being played out all over the Chinese countryside today by villagers who know that they are not fully participating in China’s economic growth, but are being told that if they want to, they must accept dams or factories that will destroy their environment.
See also photos of Tiger Leaping Gorge.