A remarkable tale: on a Beijing expressway, an automobile tails the official car of Japan's Ambassador to China. The chase goes on for three kilometers, the trailing car honking its horn the whole way. Another car appears and after a weaving and swerving course, the pair of vehicles halt the Ambassador's car. An occupant of one the cars comes out and snaps the Japanese flag off the front of the Ambassador's car. (J)
Response of the person watching the report with me: "The Chinese are barbarians."
My response, to myself, sotto voce:
"Li Hongzhang. Shimonoseki. March 24, 1895." (E)
A feeling of pride in the emergence of a powerful new state makes barbarians of us all.