A Chongqing tragedy in three acts

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 11 October, 2012, 3:56pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 11 October, 2012, 3:58pm

Think of what follows as a manifestation of remaining support for Bo Xilai, material evidence that some does exist.

Each day last week, US-based Chinese political gossip site Boxun published a series of increasingly sensational rumours regarding the case now being built against Bo Xilai, ending with a list of 89 people who were meant to form post-coup China's core leadership under Bo.

Not to be outdone, Boxun competitor Duowei then published three letters addressed to Chongqing and the nation, supposedly drafted by Bo in March weeks before being suspended from his positions on the Communist Party's Central Committee and its Politburo, with the third instalment arriving October 8.

Someone - possibly, one Duowei reader pointed out, the same individual who wrote Wang Lijun's own supposed letter to media in February, given that the opening sentences in both are nearly identical ('By the time you read this, I may be dead or behind bars/no longer free') - spent a lot of time researching these pieces.

And pieces they are: list-like re-interpretations of every major detail that has been reported throughout the saga, clearly intended to convince the reader that Bo was a victim of his circumstances, but also, according to the narrator, who describes smuggling the letters to the United States via USB - we're spared the exact details - in that this trilogy had to be painfully reconstructed from the scrambled remains of nearly a hundred plain text files Bo was somehow able to compose, one at a time, on a laptop computer between March 9-11. 

The alternative is Xinhua's version of the story, in which the evidence against him is irrefutable and substantial

Act One: Bo reveals he always knew Wang was mentally ill and out of control but could not be stopped

Key lines:

-This is but a temporary setback on the path to socialism; where I failed in Chongqing, the country will prevail.
-All I ever wanted was to give something back to Gotham/Chongqing.
- Upon my arrival in Chongqing, foreign forces and their domestic collaborators - the Fifth Column, Western imperialists - began their conspiracy - to split China, start a colour revolution and the Jasmine revolution, too! - against me; they were successful so now it's all on you!
- I hired Wang Lijun based on his flawless testimonials and remained in awe throughout the first decade of our kinship at his intense, unblinking stare and ability to terrorise city officials into compliance; his true nature was only revealed after he tricked me into granting him unconditional immunity from prosecution.
- It was consistently my view that those targeted in Wang's persecution campaign against lawyers should themselves be allowed to hire legal representation - that and there's no way we could have satisfied every last legal scholar in the country - and I assumed he would have learned this through at least one of the thousands of wiretaps he was running.

Act Two: Bo reveals he always knew his wife was increasingly mentally unstable and obsessed with death, but being Bo Xilai left him with no time to intervene.

Key lines:

- I had no idea who Heywood was until a couple days ago!
- Gu was always going on about how she thought he was trying to kill her, but I never got any of the details and it never occurred to me to ask.
- Eventually her delusions evolved into suspicion that someone was plotting to kill our son, but I'm still not sure who her key suspect was.
- Actually, Gu and I haven't spoken for years and the last time we did she was already half-gone, mumbling about ashes or smoke and how the British guy like to ride cranes or something.
- By the end I could barely recognise her, she'd transformed into a cold-blooded animal.
- Oh, and Wang Lijun later told me that Heywood was an MI6 agent so there was no chance anyone would make a fuss over his murder. I was disheartened. I was enraged. I was surrounded by murderous lunatics! I told Gu to stop taking Wang's calls, his paranoia was clearly feeding hers, pushing her over the edge.
- One day Wang showed at my house with part of Heywood's heart in his hand. I slapped him in the face and slammed the door shut.

Act Three: Bo comprehension of the past, present and future simultaneously reaches hyper-clarity

Key lines:

-Dear people of Chongqing, of China, everything I've done I did for you! Let not those unworthy smear my righteous name! The truth will be known in time!
- I waved my finger in Wang's face and told him his actions could end up bringing down all of Chongqing with him!
- By this time Gu had completely become transformed into Wang's puppet, held captive by her addiction to the cordyceps and intricate psychological traps with which he plied her.
- Whose puppet was Wang? The man had disappeared, replaced by a demon obsessed with removing the organs of death row inmates.
- This may come as a surprise, but one of China's top leaders is a CIA plant. Ever notice how Falun Gong is always out in force to welcome him on every trip overseas? You see? Right? They CIA has mind control devices that they use to remote control more people than you can imagine and the one they really want to own is me. Me! But they've underestimated my intelligence, oh boy have they ever. But I'm strong. I'm the last line of defense for both the Communist Party and China. I'm still me. I'm ready to fight them. But I need your support...

All right, you get the picture. They've kept Bo's name in the news, but few online are taking these three letters seriously. Apple Daily, however, opted to call the writing style a "definite" resemblance, but in comparison to what previous texts of Bo's isn't specified.

"It seems fake," reads one comment on Donews. "Bo lost his freedom quite a while ago; even if has written a statement, there isn't anyone able to get it out. The content of this does seem to be more left-wing, but no evidence is provided. If it was written by Bo himself, quite a bit of convincing evidence would have been included."