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U.S. ambassador's low-profile trip highlighted by Chinese netizens

2012/06/26 22:13:23

Taipei, June 26 (CNA) The United States Ambassador to China Gary Locke's recent low-profile family trip to Guilin has been used by Chinese netizens to mock the extravagant manners of Chinese officials.

The photos of Locke's trip to Guilin and Yangshuo, popular scenic spots in the Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Rgioin, have been widely circulated in the Chinese online community, with one user commenting "This is big! U.S. Ambassador Gary Locke is showing off again!"

With no bodyguards in sight and no special arrangement, such as hiring a private boat, Locke's trip was described as behaving like an ordinary person.

Chinese people posted comments online that were typical of the type that indirectly criticized Chinese officials, even though on the surface they were criticizing Locke.

"It is better to be an official in a socialist country. An ambassador of a country of capitalism is not worth much, and is no different from people on the street," quipped another online user.

"In our socialist country, police cars will clear the road when the magistrate or mayor travels," the user added.

One online comment said Chinese people may not believe Locke's style is real, but it is not uncommon for American officials, a mayor for example, to wait in line in the U.S.

"Thank god there is the excuse of different cultures. People like Locke 'should not interfere' with China's internal affairs,'" said one user sarcastically in an online post.

Writers online also sardonically called on the newspapers run by Chinese authorities, Beijing Daily and the Global Times, to publish more articles criticizing Locke's common-man style, as they have done in the past.

(By Kang Shih-jen and Kay Liu)