Thousands of people in Russia have suddenly become frightened as the economic crisis ripples through their society and a similar feeling is growing in China. Thousands of migrants are being compelled to return to their native areas as jobs dry up due to economic downturns. The Chinese government is facing economic dislocation together with the 50th anniversary of the Dalai Lama fleeing Tibet and the 20th anniversary of the infamous Tiananmen massacre. Chinese President Hu Jintao and his top generals have publicly warned the armed forces they must obey the Communist Party without question. The Central Military Commission issued a statement that “we must make sure the army will follow the instruction of the (Central Military Commission) and the Communist Party at any time, under any circumstances.”
Chinese leaders are most probably exaggerating threats to their power, but such is the impact of a world-wide economic disaster that governments suddenly are worried about violence and disorder. There will be public protests as people lose their jobs or are forced by economic considerations to leave life in the city for the boredom of a rural existence. The real question the Chinese government should be focusing on is what do migrant workers do if compelled to return to villages and farms after years of making good money working in factories?