Coming Sunday from Guy Farmer
With the U.S. image deteriorating around the world due to the war in Iraq, China isn’t far behind in the race to the bottom of the international image sweepstakes. While American politicians struggle with Iraq policy, China needs to work on its image before hosting the 2008 Olympic Games.
In recent weeks, China has come under fire for exporting dangerous consumer products and is under increasing pressure to resolve serious environmental and human rights problems before the world’s top athletes descend on Beijing next summer. This is a major challenge for a huge totalitarian state where dissent is squelched by force, if necessary.
Recently U.S. government inspectors have taken action against a wide variety of Chinese agricultural products and manufactured goods, including toys. Those products have included pesticide- or additive-laced shipments of plums, lemons, star fruits, kumquats, scallions and ginseng blocked by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), along with other imports.