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What to do when liberals are the censors?

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Citizens in authoritarian states know what they can read or publish, see or hear. In places such as China, Russia, Iran, Turkey and Egypt, semi-free private discussion and small-circulation publishing is permitted. But the dissident talk can’t become opposition action. That is cut off, either at the root or when it appears on the streets.

In a revealing interview, the Chinese artist Qiu Zhijie, a dissident in his youth and now a professor at the Central Academy of Fine Arts, told the sinologist Ian Johnson that “this........

© The Japan News