Smart Reads Friday November 9

- “Beijing looks as if the government declared martial law in the midst of a floral convention” – FT Beijing bureau chief Jamil Anderlini discusses Chinese society’s ever greater expectations amid the start of the Communist party congress that will choose the country’s new leadership.

- FT China correspondent Kathrin Hille analyses how and why outgoing president Hu Jintao has kept the next generation of leaders on a short leash , and the concern raised by his call to build up the nation’s sea power.

- The FT, New York Times and Wall Street Journal all report on Iranian jets shooting at a US drone over the Gulf on November 1 and discuss why the Obama administration kept mum about it for a week.

- Slate.com interviews Scout Tufankjian, who took THAT photo of the Obamas embracing – which the Economist has used for its front cover, with the headline “Now, hug a Republican”.

- Amongst the things Barack Obama did on Thursday was to call some of the world leaders who’d congratulated him. The Washington Post, complete with helpful map, discusses who got called and why.

- And talking of phone calls, the Guardian lifts the receiver, so to speak, on how Goldman Sachs selects its uber-Masters of the Universe.