China sets no example

Thailand, and the world, got a close-up view last week of what a truly censored society looks like. The lesson came from China, where the death of a "dissident" set off near panic and controlled frenzy in the many offices of thousands of Chinese censors.

Since Nobel Prize winner Liu Xiaobo died of cancer, the Beijing government has been working around the clock to prevent Chinese people from even knowing about it. And then, for those who do find out, trying to ensure they don't tell others.

Overall, it is an ugly scene. The bottom line is quite inescapable. The government of more than a billion people, one that craves to be called a "superpower", is flatly lying to its citizens. Liu was -- and certainly still is -- known worldwide. Preventing news of his death from reaching the country suppresses a truth that the Chinese have a right to know.

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