BACKLASH

China Cracks Down on Dissidents

As the Nobel Committee officially bestows the Peace Prize to the incarcerated Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo, Chinese authorities are showing exactly why they shouldn’t expect to win the award anytime soon. Denouncing Nobel Prize organizers, authorities cracked down on political activism this week by warning against large gatherings and blocking some websites and broadcasts. Lawyers, writers, and academics were also stopped at airports or forcibly taken to the countryside, while known activists were placed under house arrest. Ever since the Peace Prize was awarded to Liu, the Chinese government has stepped up the rhetoric. And on Thursday, its English-language newspaper—run by the Communist Party—ran a lead editorial asking, "Is there a 'plot' among the Western countries against China?"