Political Stability Comes Before Public Health in China
(Minghui.org) While Western countries allocated funds to boost medical supplies and send relief packages to individuals and small businesses to help them cope with the coronavirus pandemic, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) gave a huge amount of money to the police force, internet army, and security personnel at all levels for them to maintain stability, rather than fighting the virus.
A large number of police, auxiliary police, community workers, and militia brigades were often seen patrolling on the streets and sometimes pulling people out of their homes for forced quarantine. They often wore higher-quality personal protective equipment than what was given to front-line doctors and nurses.
It was reported last year that the CCP spent more than 1.3 trillion yuan on domestic security, and this number is only expected to be higher, given the above measures they’ve taken and their expanded disinformation campaign and censorship during the pandemic.
The pandemic didn’t stop the CCP from persecuting Falun Gong either. As many practitioners have continued their efforts in exposing the persecution of their faith, as well as warning people to be aware of the CCP’s cover-up of the pandemic using similar tactics, the month of February and March saw an increase of arrests and harassment of practitioners, as the authorities are trying to silence them.
Other funds have been allocated for pay raises for military officers and the internet army so that they can better serve the CCP.
Pay Raise in the Military
The CCP increased the salaries of army officers by a large margin. The raise is a reflection of the CCP's firm belief that “political power grows out of the barrel of a gun” and that the army is its “bodyguard,” which also enjoys more privileges than civilian sectors.
According to reports on April 18, 2020, a corporal gets pay raise of 5,750 yuan, sergeant 7,820 yuan, staff sergeant 10,120 yuan, sergeant first class 12,420 yuan, lieutenant 10,360 yuan, captain 11,270 yuan, major 13,340 yuan, lieutenant colonel 17,020 yuan, colonel 26,070 yuan, senior colonel 29,440 yuan, and major general 34,270 yuan.
Compared to the military officials, the monthly minimum wage for a migrant worker in Shanghai is only 2,300 yuan or 2,200 yuan in Beijing.
The “50-cent Army” Is Now the “70-cent Army”
China has a huge internet army, hired by propaganda departments at various levels to manipulate and control public opinion. The internet army, often referred to as the “50-cent army” (each post is paid 50 cents), mostly consists of ordinary citizens.
Their main task is to promote the CCP's political agenda by supporting pro-government postings, obscuring the truth, manipulating public opinion, and guiding public sentiment in favor of the CCP, as well as fabricating lies and spreading fake news.
A supervisor may require his/her internet army members to give “thumbs up” to a particular post, or to put a piece of fake news or video on the most-searched list.
One of such postings on WeChat said: “The epidemic in the U.S. is worsening. Each state is fighting the coronavirus on their own and they are running out of resources. The most likely outcome is that each state secedes from the federation and seeks help from China. The collapse of the Soviet Union 29 years ago will happen again in the US.......In addition, some states will apply to join China, becoming a member of the Chinese Socialist Republic. Under the leadership of the Chinese Socialist Republic, the world will no longer have any war, and humankind will return to peace.”
In order to stimulate the performance of the “50-cent army,” payment per post was reported to have been increased to 70 or 80 cents.