Some interesting points from Jonathan Watts' article in the Observer, on the anti-Japanese riots in China. Firstly, the extent of their orchestration:
[I]n Shanghai the police not only approved yesterday's demonstration, they actively encouraged it. At 4.30pm last Thursday, mobile phones in Shanghai buzzed with a text-message from the municipal security office calling on local people to show their love for their country in a law-abiding way. Many among the millions who received the message took it as a green light to join the demonstration. News about the rally was also broadcast by the Shanghai radio station, which informed people about the march while also announcing that it was unauthorised.
Then, the way that increased internet use is being exploited by the government:
Hopes that the rapid spread of the internet in China would lead to an increase of open democratic debate also appear to have proved wide of the mark. While many sites promoting human rights and religious beliefs are blocked, a plethora of anti-Japanese sites have been largely free to promote hatred.
And finally, the ugly truth:
Communist cadres openly acknowledge that nationalism is replacing Marxism as the raison d'être of the ruling party. 'Nobody understands Marxism. It is ridiculous,' says Li Rui, a former secretary of Mao Zedong. 'The ideals of the past don't exist any more. So it is right to turn to nationalism. It is the means by which the party can maintain its system and ideology.'