February 6, 2023

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Jiang Zemin, leader of China, dies after the Tiananmen Square protests at the age of 96

Jiang Zemin, leader of China, dies after the Tiananmen Square protests at the age of 96

The brutal capitalism fostered by Mr. Jiang and Mr. Zhou created a wide divide between the rich and the poor even as it raised large numbers of poverty, and fostered a culture of official corruption and nepotism.

“In some ways, this was the beginning of this live-and-let-live attitude to the corruption that Xi Jinping now finds himself attacking,” he said. Joseph Fewsmitha professor at Boston University who studies Chinese leadership politics.

By the time Mr. Jiang retired from the party leadership in 2002 and from the presidency in 2003, his influence and self-esteem had swelled to the point that he was reluctant to leave the political stage. (His successor, Hu Jintao, had already been appointed by Mr. Ding.)

Mr. Jiang remained chairman of the Party’s Central Military Commission, and supervised the People’s Liberation Army until 2004, and then continued to play a back room role in promotions. Party insiders said Mr. Jiang had used his influence to shape the leadership lineup that Mr. Xi inherited when he became party leader in November 2012.

In August 2015, the People’s Daily, the party’s main newspaper, issued an unusually blunt warning that Retired leaders should stay out of politics And “calm down” like a cup of tea after the guest leaves. The comment sparked rumors that Mr. Xi had become annoyed with Mr. Jiang’s efforts to wield power behind the scenes, but the two men soon after appeared on the podium with former President Hu Jintao. During a military parade in Beijing.

But the influence of Jiang and his coterie of allies, sometimes known as the Shanghai faction, has faded over the past decade. At a Communist Party congress last month, Mr. Xi created a new Politburo standing committee, the Seven Men Run China, which is made up entirely of his loyalists, with no officials with close ties to his predecessors, Mr. Jiang and Mr. he is.

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“Jiang Zemin continued to wield influence even after he stepped down, but it damaged his reputation,” said Mr. Yang, a Beijing historian. “He did it because he was comfortable with power, but also because around him there was a circle of people who relied on him and flattered him to make him believe he was indispensable.”