An Idea Whose Time Has Passed

NOW THAT THE "EVIL EMPIRE" HAS COLLAPSED, MANY U.S. conservatives are eager to convert the Chinese to capitalism. Their nostalgic solution: RADIO FREE CHINA. The project would cost $110 million to launch and $34 million a year to operate. Among its critics is Chinese dissident Nien Cheng, author of Life and Death in Shanghai, the diary of her harsh 6 1/2-year imprisonment during the Cultural Revolution. Cheng notes that millions of Chinese are already devoted to Voice of America. And the new service might "give hard-liners an excuse to crack down on dissidents."

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