Three birthdays say much about China’s future and its leaders’ ‘revolutionary bloodline’

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By Willy Lam,

There are three major birthdays and anniversaries in this year’s political calendar – and how they will be celebrated says much about the country’s future.

Xi Jinping turns 60 on June 15.  /Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo
Xi Jinping turns 60 on June 15. /Erin A. Kirk-Cuomo

The first one is the 60th birthday of President and party General Secretary Xi Jinping, which falls on June 15.The second is the centenary of the birth of Xi’s father, the late Xi Zhongxun, a former vice-premier and party chief of Guangdong Province. And then there is the 120th birthday of Chairman Mao Zedong, which falls on the day after Christmas.

In accordance with the austerity campaign that Xi kicked off shortly after the 18th Chinese Communist Party (CCP) Congress last November, Xi and his wife, former PLA singer Peng Liyuan, have told relatives and party cadres that there will not be any celebration. In accordance with the half-year-old “Eight regulations on improvement the working style [of cadres],” officials are forbidden to hold big feasts or give lavish gifts on the occasion of the birthdays of their superiors.

The centenary of Xi Zhongxun, however, is another matter.

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