Disappearance (?) of Peng Shuai

In fact, Simon’s has already acted to pull the WTA from China (well, suspend tournaments), so that’s already playing out. I haven’t seen any other sports agencies (like, oh, say the NBA) doing likewise, but I hope it makes them at least a bit more cautious and perhaps a bit more observant of what’s going on and the potential blowback on them when their great friends in the CCP do distasteful stuff.

I figure we should see another sham video conference with Peng playing with children or stuffed animals sometime soon. I’m actually surprised they haven’t gotten her to toe the line enough yet to let her at least nominally off the leash to speak directly to the WTA, as they are the ones making the most noise and being the biggest thorn in the CCPs side.

The IOC actually reported a second half-hour video call with her (can’t recall now if that was today or yesterday). But again, with zero details, and just vague claims that she “seemed fine.”

Yeah, I saw a video on that. It wasn’t very convincing except to the convinced, and I think it’s actually hurting them to do this (more than they were already shooting themselves in the foot over this thing) as it underscores the fact that only the IOC really seems to be getting this access. I mean, multiple organizations and even countries have asked for this, yet only the IOC, and only in highly controlled circumstances have gotten it. That’s got to seem a bit fishy even to the CCP supporter types, at least I would think so (ok, probably not).

I don’t mean this to be any sort of defense of the CCP - it’s anything but - but there isn’t really anything the CCP could do that would convince the sporting community that Peng Shuai is indeed free to speak her mind. Peng could say or do anything and we still wouldn’t be able to know that she is doing so free of coercion. Not unless someone assigned some WTA representative to tag along next to her 24/7 for the rest of her life as an eyewitness.

Kudos to the WTA. I wish the NBA and others would follow suit, but I doubt they will.

They could let her leave the country and speak frankly to non state journalists about her accusations against the former CCP official.

Sure, but when she returned to China there’d be a horrific price to pay, maybe for her family as well. Unless you mean her leaving China for the rest of her life in exile/asylum, and I’m not sure she even wants that.

They could do the above and not retaliate against her or her family.

Not gonna happen, but that doesn’t mean it’s not what should happen.

At this point? No, not much, aside from letting her go, and if she wants to get on a plane and fly to personally visit people and talk to them directly. So…that is something they COULD do.

But had they allowed her off the leash a bit initially (assuming they could control her as well as they have in the very limited video releases so far) I think her talking directly to the WTA might have smoothed things over. My WAG is it never occurred to them that this would become such a stink…they generally miss this sort of thing, especially since in the past they have been able to cow organizations like the NBA so easily and completely.

But that’s the thing…they haven’t actually released her. She isn’t free to move around, go places, or talk at any time. She is an international tennis star…she COULD just board a flight to New York or a dozen other places and talk directly to someone like Simon…except, you know, she can’t. You are right…at this point, it would be very difficult to convince any but the faithful with anything short of letting her go. They obviously don’t want to do that so, within the constraints of the cluster fuck they have going here there isn’t much they can do.

She would have known all of this before she posted her accusation, including the part about her family. Pretty obviously, despite that threat, the CCP still felt they needed to take further steps, probably because she posted this knowing there would be a huge backlash including against her family. I don’t think a lot of people understand what it took for her to do what she did.

The only thing we learned from Peng apparently only speaking to the IOC when it’s the WTA demanding to speak to her is… that the IOC is fully controlled by the Chinese Communist Party, as if there was any doubt about it before.

That the IOC is complicit in the coverup/whitewashing of this situation is yet another reason why the Beijing Olympics should be boycotted.

The Chinese government could at minimum allow Peng Shuai to speak to the international media at a press conference (not held in the Ministry of Truth) and answer questions without official handlers gripping her elbows. At the same time it could announce a formal inquiry into her accusations, hauling in relevant officials for on-the-record statements and taking testimony from other female athletes.

And I could fly to the moon on gossamer wings.

They could certainly do the press conference if they have confidence she is under control. In fact, I’m a bit surprised they didn’t do this already, though if you look at Jack Ma it took them months before they seemed ready to let him in front of cameras.

They would never do the latter part of your proposal though. At the most, they would basically handle it internally, probably by framing those involved with some other 'anti-corruption type charges, then shoot them or make them otherwise disappear.

Deepfakes technology has come a very long way in a very short time. It could even be utilized convincingly in a live video-call situation. Not that I have any evidence to support this, but this seems like an ideal scenario to use such technology for nefarious purposes, like say, making it appear that someone who is dead or imprisoned is alive and free.

In related news, a Chinese official has warned of “firm countermeasures” if the U.S. and allies stage a diplomatic boycott of the Olympics in China over human rights issues.

Speculation has it that in return, China will not send a delegation to next year’s Nathan’s Famous Hot Dog Eating Contest.

There is no war in Ba Sing Se.

“I wanted to make this very clear: I have never claimed, or written about anyone having sexually assaulted me,” Peng said.

The animatronic Peng Shuai is far more lifelike than I would have anticipated.

The Chinese really have this stuff down. And – considering supply chain issues rife throughout the world – remarkably quickly, too.

AP posted this; the translation is slightly different:

“First of all, I want to emphasize something that is very important. I have never said that I wrote that anyone sexually assaulted me. I need to emphasize this point very clearly,” Peng told the newspaper’s reporter.

Deep fakes are better.

She never said that she wrote anything. She said things, and she wrote things, but she never said anything about the writing.