China calls the torch run a success

April 10, 2008 8:20:05 PM PDT
Activists in Argentina are coordinating their efforts with leaders of the San Francisco protests, for the next torch run, through Buenos Aires.

About 6,000 police have been assigned to the security detail there.

The torch arrived in Argentina on Thursday, and Olympic officials, satisfied with the security tactics used in San Francisco yesterday, have decided not to cancel the rest of the relay -- to Africa, Asia, through Tibet, and back to Beijing.

In China, the government news agencies are describing an event that never happened.

The Chinese government controlled news service is making the events up, it up which is what they've been doing.

But what San Francisco gave them was video that helps.

The official Chinese news service is calling the San Francisco torch relay a success.

In their words: "Thousands of people gathered along the route of the relay under a sunny sky to show their support for the torch run."

In fact, there was hardly anyone gathered along the route -- compared to the thousands that did gather on the Embarcadero. But the torch never came anywhere near them.

The Xinhua News Service did say the route had been changed due to threats by Tibetan separatists.

The Deputy Director of Students for a Free Tibet says San Francisco's mayor played into the Chinese government's propaganda.

"We hope to change the Chinese government by cooperating and appeasing them. However, the truth often is the other way around and how the Chinese government manages to change us, and yesterday look at San Francisco," said Tensin Dorjee from Students for a Free Tibet.

Tensin Dorjee says San Francisco acted more like Beijing officials. But it's pretty clear that being didn't need these pictures to fabricate the story they wanted to tell.

The massive protests in London and Paris were at first ignored by the Chinese media, and then described as "Tibetan separatists who disrupted the relay to the "indignation of the local population."

"Did the city make it easier for the Chinese government to spin this story to their own people by re-routing the torch?" asked ABC7's Mark Matthews.

"No, I think what the city did was make it easier for San Franciscans to wake up today feeling more secure that their city knows how to handle a difficult situation," said Torch Committee Spokesman David Perry.

Dave Perry, the spokesman for the city's Torch Relay Committee, says the torch run was a success; not the same as the Chinese governments version, but a success because nobody got hurt.

An awful lot of people were disappointed to not see the Olympic flame pass by.

"If you're disappointed you should tell the people who assaulted a person in a wheel chair with the torch on the streets of Paris, you should talk to the people who turned a peaceful protest into something violent," said Perry.


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