Daily Archives: March 4, 2013

By Gideon Rachman

Some months ago, I was discussing the euro crisis with a high-ranking US diplomat. “It’s back to the 1930s, isn’t it?” said my companion with a mixture of gloom and relish. “The extremists are on the rise.”

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The early announcement of China’s defence spending one day ahead of the premier’s general budget report has long been one of the setpieces during the annual session of the country’s rubber stamp parliament.

But on Monday morning, international media left empty-handed. When a Reuters reporter asked the question, Mme Fu Ying, the seasoned diplomat who is the new spokesperson for the National People’s Congress, refused to answer and referred the media to the budget report instead. Read more