Sunday, October 21, 2012

What Chinese Know (or Don't) about 1962 War

In my never-ending scramble to search the Interwebs for research and polls and stories about what people know (or don't know), here's one that pinged the hell out of my search this morning.  There are four versions I could point to, so let me pick this one at random.  Below, the lede:
BEIJING: More than 80 per cent of the Chinese population have no knowledge of the 1962 war with India and want the two neighbors to walk out of the shadow of conflict, a survey by state-run media said.
The obvious reason, the Chinese population is weighted heavily toward the young.  But the survey is really about relations between India and China -- two regional powers and emerging world powers.  So read the following:
Over 61 per cent of the people regarded Sino-Indian ties as normal or good, while over 34 per cent of the respondents believed the two countries have constant frictions.

This is in sharp contrast to the recent survey results published by Washington based PEW agency which stated that “roughly a quarter (23 per cent) have a favorable opinion of India, while 62 per cent offer a negative opinion.”
When it comes to sound poll methodology, I lean toward Pew.  The difference is interesting and may be a function of when the polls were conducted.

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