See all those languages up there? We translate Global Voices stories to make the world's citizen media available to everyone.

Learn more about Lingua Translation  »

China: Why Didn't Putin Come Pick Up His Confucius Peace Prize?

Nationalist Chinese leftists seem to have been left out in the cold with their annual Confucius Peace Prize, the second of which was awarded to Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin last month. China's Ministry of Culture has publicly distanced itself from the Prize and even tried to shut it down.

As with last year's recipient, Putin didn't turn up to accept the award at a ceremony held in Beijing this past weekend; Phoenix blogger Cai Shenkun tells us why [zh]:

颁奖仪式上,孔子和平奖评委会主席谯达摩详细介绍了第二届孔子和平奖得主俄罗斯总理普京,并由来自白俄罗斯的女留学生莎莎、玛莎用俄语宣读了关于普京的介绍。

At the award ceremony on December 9, Chairman of the Confucius Peace Prize (CPP) jury committee, Qiao Damo, introduced this year's recipient, Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, in great detail and awarded the Prize in Putin's place to BelarusianRussian exchange students, Sasha and Mascha, who then read out an introduction to Putin in Russian.

接着北京大学教授、孔子和平奖评委会评委孔庆东宣读第二届孔子和平奖授予普京的获奖理由:“鉴于弗拉基米尔·普京先生在担任俄罗斯总统和总理期间,政绩斐然,在内政外交方面均取得了卓越成就,给伟大的俄罗斯人民带来了福祉;以及他于2011年春夏之交,坚决反对北约轰炸利比亚,为维护世界和平做出了杰出贡献,从而为当代人类和平史提供了经典范例,特此颁发2011年第二届孔子和平奖。”

Then, Peking University professor and CPP jury member Kong Qingdong read out the reasons why Putin was chosen as the recipient for the second annual CPP: “Given Vladimir Putin's remarkable achievements throughout his terms as president and prime minister of Russia, distinguished both among his domestic peers and in foreign policy circles, and the wellbeing that he has brought the majestic people of Russia, but also through his resolve in early 2011 to oppose NATO strikes against Libya, Putin has made an outstanding contribution to maintaining world peace and serves as a model figure for contemporary humans. For these reasons, he has been awarded the 2011 2nd annual Confucius Peace Prize.”
Kong Qingdong (bottom), image from Shanghaiist.com

Kong Qingdong (bottom), image from Shanghaiist.com

有趣的是,俄罗斯官方无一人到场参会领奖。此前,文化部发文下令停办了该项未经批准的评选活动。有评论认为,孔子和平奖这个为对抗诺贝尔和平奖而设的奖项,不但没有为国际社会认可,就连中国官方也极力与其撇清关系。

去年的首届孔子和平奖授予台湾国民党荣誉主席连战,不过,连战并没有接受这个奖项,而是由主办者找了一位小女孩代替连战领奖。

What's interesting is that not a single Russian official was on site to accept the award. Prior to this, the Ministry of Culture ordered that candidate selection for this unapproved activity be put to a halt. Some feel that the CPP, established to oppose the Nobel Peace Prize, not only hasn't received international recognition, but even Chinese officials have tried to sever all connection to it. 

Last year's CPP went to Kuomintang honorary chairman Lien Chan, but even Lien didn't accept the award and instead a young woman was selected by its organizers to accept Lien's prize on his behalf.

第二届孔子和平奖评选是在今年11月13号揭晓的,评委会由十六名国内学者组成,包括北京大学教授孔庆东、清华大学教授邱拙、清华大学博士费毕刚以及第一届孔子和平奖候选人谯达摩。对这个奖项,俄罗斯官方没有作出任何表态,一些俄罗斯媒体认为,普京获此奖让他感到“非常尴尬”。

事实上,官方也与“孔子和平奖”保持距离。文化部网站郑重刊登声明,表示下属“中国乡土艺术协会”从未授权任何分支机构举办孔子和平奖颁奖活动,任何机构以该协会名义举办活动,将被追究法律责任。外交部发言人也拒绝回答这届孔子和平奖的问题。

The recipient of the 2nd CPP was revealed on November 13 this year, selected by a jury comprised of 16 domestic academics, including Peking University Professor Kong Qingdong, Tsinghua University Professor Qiu Zhuo, Tsinghua PhD holder Fei Bigang, as well as CPP candidate from the previous year, Qiao Damo. Russia has yet to make any official statement regarding this year's award, but some Russian media have said that Putin himself feels “extremely awkward” at having been chosen as the recipient. 

In fact, even China has tried to distance itself from the CPP. The Ministry of Culture even issued a formal statement on its website saying that the “Chinese Folk Art Association” has never received authorization from any branch of the Ministry to hold the CPP award ceremony, and that any group which organizes an activity under that name will be held legally responsible. A Foreign Ministry spokesperson, when asked about the CPP, refused to answer the question.

一个号称中国级的大奖让孔庆东这样的玩家来把玩,实在让官方难堪。去年第一届孔子和平奖,评选组织者是文化部所属的中国乡土艺术协会。今年第二届孔子和平奖活动一波三折,主办单位中国乡土艺术协会被文化部撤销,主办单位随后换成中华社会文化发展基金会,很快又被官方叫停。最后去年孔子和平奖候选人谯达摩在香港新注册的了一个新的机构:“中国国际和平研究中心”。

The antics of this player Kong Qingdong in trying to pass the award off as representing the country have truly embarrassed the government. Responsible for organizing and selecting the recipient for last year's CPP was the Chinese Folk Art Association, a part of the Ministry of Culture. This year has been an uphill battle for the CPP. After the Chinese Folk Art Association, the official sponsor of CPP events, was revoked by the Ministry of Culture, it changed its name to the Chinese Society Cultural Development Fund, but that too was quickly shut down. In the end, CPP candidate Qiao Moda registered a new organization in Hong Kong, the “China International Peace Studies Center.”

号称是孔子后代的孔庆东在颁奖仪式上除了赞扬俄罗斯总理普京之外,还对美国进行了猛烈抨击。他认为“美国是强盗国家、流氓国家,美国破坏了这个世界上所有人的和平”。
按照孔庆东的逻辑,只要反对美国,就可以获得孔子和平奖。

具有讽刺意味的是,就在北京授予普京“孔子和平奖”时,普京正被俄罗斯50多个城市反普京的抗议示威活动搞得头疼不已,来自北京的这个大奖似乎对他没有多少帮助。

At the award ceremony, Kong Qingdong, who claims to be a descendant of Confucius, aside from praising Russian Prime Minister Putin, also strongly attacked the USA. “The USA is a country of gangsters, a rogue state. The USA has destroyed peace for all people on earth.” 

So according to Kong's logic, anyone who opposes the USA can win themselves a Confucius Peace Prize.

The most ironic part is that right while Beijing was awarding Putin his “Confucius Peace Prize,” Putin himself was facing down anti-Putin demonstrations in more than 50 cities across Russia, and receiving this prestigious award from Beijing couldn't have helped him much.

  • bill rich

    白俄罗斯is Belarus, not Russia. It is like awarding the prize to Obama and ask an English girl to pick up the prize.

  • MarkmBha

    It is amazing that such a violent country, such as China, even has the gall to come up with a “peace prize”. It’s citizens are so poor and controled violently.
    A peace prize; I don’t think so!

  • zhuzidi

    Or the fact that Kong Qingdong is a notorious nationalist who can’t seem to go a week without saying something stupid/bigoted. If he really is descended from Confucius… I guess wisdom doesn’t run in the family.

Receive great stories from around the world directly in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the best of Global Voices
Email Frequency



No thanks, show me the site