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The 48 Club

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The 48 Club

Old 30th Jun 2020, 07:25
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Ecce Homo! Loquitur...
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The 48 Club

Shades of the 1930s......

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/b...hina-q5ng2plt8


British elite ‘being groomed by China’

Apowerful body of business and political figures dedicated to stronger ties with China is taking legal action over a book which claims that President Xi’s government is grooming Britain’s elites.

The 48 Group Club, of which the former deputy prime minister Lord Heseltine is a founding patron, took down its website after Hidden Hand, an exposť of Chinese influence networks, was published. Stephen Perry, a London businessman who chairs the 48 Group Club, has begun legal action to stop the publication of the book in the UK and Canada, according to its co-author, the Australian academic Clive Hamilton.

The book, released in Australia last week, portrays Beijing’s influence in Britain through the Chinese Communist Party as far reaching and unstoppable. It says that while the club, with 500 members and headquarters in London, keeps a very low profile at home it serves as a networking hub “through which Beijing grooms Britain’s elites”.

The claims come as British universities are to be told how to
protect themselves from interference by foreign powers amid fears about the influence of China on campuses. Senior politicians, academics and former diplomats have put a spotlight on foreign interference, drawing particular attention to the financial dependency of universities on Chinese research grants and students.

“In our judgment, so entrenched are the [Chinese] influence networks among British elites that Britain has passed the point of no return and any attempt to extricate itself from Beijing’s orbit would probably fail,” wrote Hamilton, a professor of public ethics at Charles Sturt University and his co-author, Mareike Ohlberg, a senior fellow in the Asia programme of the German Marshall Fund. Professor Hamilton is regarded as an expert on the Chinese Communist Party......

After the club’s website disappeared, a notice at its address said that it was undergoing maintenance. An archived snapshot of the website, from December, listed current and former MPs, peers, chief executives, and prominent individuals from academia and media as “fellows”.......


Hidden Hand was published digitally in Germany in May and is a bestseller. Professor Hamilton said that the book’s UK publisher, Oneworld, had received a letter from lawyers that claimed Mr Perry and the 48 Group Club had been defamed. “We will be responding robustly,” he said. “The book is meticulously documented. We stand by our research.”

In a statement the board of the 48 Group Club confirmed that it had taken legal advice. “We were, and remain, concerned about some of its reported content, not least since at no time did the authors attempt to contact us in the course of their research.” It added: “The 48 Group Club is not in any sense a vehicle for Beijing. It is an independent body promoting understanding of China and positive Sino-British relations, which we believe to be in the UK’s national interest. Any suggestion to the contrary is quite false.”

The club said it awarded fellowships to people it considered to have made outstanding contributions to Sino- British relations, and this status did not entail commitments or obligations.......


ORAC is offline  
Old 30th Jun 2020, 16:16
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And for those who want to see the site before it went in to 'maintenance':
https://web.archive.org/web/20191015...groupclub.com/

Those pesky kids and their wayback machine...
Tocsin is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2020, 12:41
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In the 21st Century how do they think you can "Ban" a book? Anyone can find and read anything one pleases - or even displeases - these days.
Blacksheep is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2020, 12:58
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In the 21st Century how do they think you can "Ban" a book?
Perhaps because it already works so well for them in China...
cattletruck is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2020, 14:06
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Angry

It does make you wonder, in the midst of the efforts to get H u a w e i removed from the 5G network, planners in Cambridge have just approved plans
for a large research facility for them in Sawston just outside Cambridge, makes you wonder who did the lobbying!
cliver029 is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2020, 16:45
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Originally Posted by Blacksheep View Post
In the 21st Century how do they think you can "Ban" a book? Anyone can find and read anything one pleases - or even displeases - these days.
Digressing slightly, in the 1980s I was very proud of myself having managed to buy a copy of Spycatcher by Peter Wright whilst overseas (it was banned from publication in the U.K. at the time) I felt very rebellious and brave bringing my copy back through Gatwick, carefully wrapped in my underpants, deep in my suitcase. I was slightly disappointed when no one challenged me for being a subversive for bringing contraband material into the country but felt a sense of achievement at having outsmarted the authorities.

Having read it, I can see why it was banned. It was the most monotonous and dry book ever. I guess the government were probably more concerned about the public dying of boredom than anything particularly sensitive. It sat on my bookshelf gathering dust for several years and then ended up in a charity bag.
BehindBlueEyes is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2020, 17:48
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Originally Posted by cliver029 View Post
It does make you wonder, in the midst of the efforts to get H u a w e i removed from the 5G network, planners in Cambridge have just approved plans
for a large research facility for them in Sawston just outside Cambridge, makes you wonder who did the lobbying!
Huawei has for some years had a facility inside the BT Research labs at Martlesham. I haven't heard any official statement on its future.
Sallyann1234 is offline  
Old 1st Jul 2020, 21:08
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It was the most monotonous and dry book ever.
Possibly ... but only just ahead of The Satanic Verses ...


Alsacienne is offline  

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