CHINA: Pickpockets, Muggers, Thieves

A wave of crime haunts city streets

For years China has cultivated an image of itself as a peace-loving society that had eradicated much of the violent crime plaguing the decadent capitalist West. No longer. In recent weeks Chinese newspapers and radio broadcasts have been so filled with detailed reports about pickpockets, street muggers and rapists that the country appears to be in the midst of a nationwide crime wave.

The problem seems particularly serious in Shanghai, where twelve platoons of army troops have been sent out to ensure safety on the streets....

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