- Publisher unveils Hillary Clinton’s new memoir — ‘Hard Choices’
- Britain’s Labour Party hires David Axelrod — but can’t spell his name
- Washington and Lee law students demand ban on Confederate flag, say Gen. Lee was racist
- Prosecutors seek arrest warrant for ferry captain in South Korea
- Ann Coulter takes up ‘Mitt Romney for President’ chant again
- Mount Everest avalanche kills a dozen Sherpa guides
- Vice principal saved from South Korean sinking ferry found hanged
- ‘I Am Alive’ app gains popularity in terror-ravaged Lebanon
- Gun giveaways gain popularity among Republican candidates
- S.C. hospital worker slapped with $525 federal fine for refilling $0.89 soda
New Chinese leader Xi talks tough on corruption
In a weekend speech that was carried Monday by the official Xinhua News Agency, Xi Jinping told the new 25-member Politburo that the party must be vigilant against graft, noting that corruption in other countries in recent years has prompted major social unrest and the collapse of governments.
“The large number of facts tells us that if the problem of corruption becomes increasingly severe, it will lead to the ruin of the party and the country,” Mr. Xi said in a speech that can be read as an indication of the priorities of the incoming administration.
Mr. Xi’s language was unusually direct for a top leader, indicating his seriousness about the problem, but his speech gave few indications of how the party could better police itself, said Jean-Pierre Cabestan, a political scientist at Hong Kong Baptist University.
“He used strong words. It was clearly a warning: ‘We have to do something about this,’” Mr. Cabestan said.
“Clearly, for him, the crux of the matter is corruption. The trouble is, of course, that he doesn’t tell us much about what are going to be the efficient tools or weapons he will put together to fight corruption.”
Several corruption investigations have targeted high-level leaders in recent years, most notably former Politburo member Bo Xilai, who was purged this year after an aide disclosed that Mr. Bo’s wife murdered a British businessman.
Mr. Bo is accused of obstructing the investigation into the killing as well as unspecified corruption while in office.
Foreign media, meanwhile, have reported in recent weeks that the families of Chinese leaders have accumulated enormous wealth.
Mr. Xi urged officials at all levels to obey anti-corruption regulations and to better limit their relatives or associates from abusing their influence for personal gain, but he gave no indication of any independent mechanism for investigating graft.
The party — which controls courts, police and prosecutors — has proved feeble in policing itself, yet it does not want to undermine its control by empowering an independent body. Some officials have been required to report income, real estate holdings and other wealth to their superiors since 2010, but the measure has done little to halt graft.
Mr. Xi took over as China’s top leader Nov. 15 when he assumed the posts of party leader and head of the military commission from President Hu Jintao. Mr. Hu will retain the title of president — the ceremonial head of state — until next spring, when he hands that position to Mr. Xi as well.
Mr. Xi has been gradually replacing key Hu-appointed party officials.
On Monday, former Public Security Minister Meng Jianzhu replaced Zhou Yongkang as head of the Political Science and Law Commission, which oversees police and the courts.
Zhao Leji, the former party boss of the northern province of Shaanxi, was named the new head of the Organization Department, responsible for key government and party appointments.
TWT Video Picks
By Tammy Bruce
Team Obama's bizarre behavior helps Gitmo terrorists foil justice
- Harry Reid blasts Bundy ranch supporters as 'domestic terrorists'
- CBO shows it's Paul Ryan 4, Obama 0 on budget targeting
- PRUDEN: When a bored president just 'mails it in'
- Joe Biden's biggest gaffe: VP blowing his 2016 head start
- Inside China: Marine's comment on islands draws sharp Chinese response
- BOLTON: A 'three-state solution' for Middle East peace
- With pot and e-cigarettes, Big Tobacco is just waiting to inhale emerging markets
- Golden Hammer: Easter candy bitter taste for taxpayers?
- Obama taunts GOP, takes nationally televised victory lap on Obamacare
- Atheists rush to stage Easter display: 'Jesus Christ is a myth'
Top 10 handguns in the U.S.