From Spiegel Online:
The Chinese Communist regime’s had planned to stage the 2008 Olympic Games as a triumphant celebration of itself as a model of success. But anyone traveling through the country’s provinces will encounter a crumbling realm threatened by forces released by its economic boom.
The man who can explain China is sitting in a private booth in an old teahouse in Beijing, holding court at an antique table with a laptop on it. Black and white photos hang on the walls and silk cushions adorn the benches. In the world outside, the Olympic Torch is making its way through the country and slowly approaching Beijing. The man says that the West is taking the easy route with China, despite its enormous complexity. “In this country, every movement takes place at the edge of an abyss.”