The Anti-Japanese protests in China have been alarming. As the above video shows, some of the protests are anti-American. From the Shaghaiist (here):
During Tuesday's anti-Japan protests to mark the 81st anniversary of the invasion of Japan into China, a small group of about 50 protestors in Beijing decided to make a detour to the US Embassy. There they shouted anti-American slogans (“Down with American Imperialism!”) and later surrounded a car carrying the US Ambassador to China Gary Locke, hurling bottles at it. The car sustained minor damage and the ambassador remained unharmed.
Note the similarities to Evan Osnos’ blog post “How China Protests” on the anti-Japanese protests (here):
..... But when I visited on Tuesday, I couldn’t help but sense that the Japanese were not the only ones nervous. Over the weekend, anti-Japanese protests, triggered by a dispute over uninhabited islands in the East China Sea, led to violence and rioting. It was a rare sight in China, and the vandalized stores and cars left behind were a reminder of how quickly things can get out of hand. By Tuesday, authorities had clearly decided they would tolerate it no longer. By contrast, this protest was a parade. The police had organized the demonstrators into bunches, allowing them to stream by the front of the Embassy for a moment to throw water bottles at the granite and steel gate, before they were ushered on to make way for the next group. Separating them from the gate were rows of riot troops in camouflage. It was a rare blue sky in Beijing, and the protesters seemed unhurried as they moved in orderly packs, carrying banners denouncing “Japanese dogs” and vowing never to give in.
Police equaled or outnumbered protesters, and they had been issued megaphones to whisk people along when they lingered. About halfway down the protest route, I heard the recorded voice of a woman, and initially thought it was a recording from the protesters. It took me a second to realize it was coming from the police station, and the message was not directed to the Japanese at all. In Chinese, it said:
Since Japan has violated our national sovereignty, it is natural that we express our feelings. We share the same feeling with you. The government’s stance is clear: the government will not tolerate the violation of our national sovereignty. We should support our government, express our patriotic sentiments in a legal, orderly, and rational fashion. We should obey the laws and regulations, and not adopt extreme behavior, or disturb the social order. Please coördinate yourselves with our work, and obey the instructions of the police. Please do not linger here after you express yourself. Thank you everyone.
Moving along the sidewalks with the protesters and onlookers and police, I was struck most of all by how hard the Chinese government was working to keep its people happy, to show them that it is doing what they want. Nationalism is a volatile force, and it would be easy for protests to expand into criticism of the state. Chinese authorities have no choice but to let their people blow off steam over Japan, but they are determined to keep them on message.